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September 2015
Advance Base
"Nephew In The Wild
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To say an album "returns to form" seems to allude to something being off or missing or in a deformed state in previous releases. With the new album from Advance Base (aka Owen Ashworth), Nephew In The Wild, it is more of a beautiful blending of two "forms". This album could have easily been the first Casiotone for the Painfully Alone album since 2009's Vs. Children. This is a clear return to the sound and storytelling of the Casiotone persona. The album's open track and lead single "Trisha Please Come Home" in the perfect example. Ashworth spins tales of the everyday but tinges of sadness. His stories are sweet and sad, and always fully realized. Musically, the album is filled with familiar sounds from an array of instruments; Electric pianos, drum kits, drum machines, autoharps, Omnichords, Optigans, Mellotrons. All of this, blending with Ashworth's skill, create a perfect late summer and early fall soundtrack.


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Baltimore's alt-folk Stephen Lee releases album West of Twenty-Three, plays the Villain and Saint, 1/10

He has a raspy voice, a guitar, and knack for storytelling through song, so naturally Stephen Lee is a perfect fit for the Baltimore music scene. With his unique brand of Americana mixed with alternative flavoring, the music evokes images of smoke-filled bars by railroad tracks and old factories, filled with beer-swilling listeners and stomping feet. Lee's sound is similar to that of Lucero, stripped down to near lo-fi status and backed by a steady beat from his guitar. If you're looking for common man verses without airs, give his recent release West of Twenty-Three a listen or catch him opening for Noble Giants and Throwing Wrenches at the Villain and Saint in Bethesda, 1/10. -Jonathan Goodwin

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Baltimore's hip-hip fusion Joint Effort to play the Tree House Lounge, 1/22

They may only be three-strong, but Joint Effort have the musical chops and talent of a dozen. With guitar riffs supplied by Neil Durr, the musicality has strong similarity to the jams of Jimi Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughan, capturing some of the essence of blues and blending it with their rock and hip-hop bedrock. Flawless bass lines from the hands of Durr's brother Evan tie together the sick string work with the lyrically-rich verses spilled by vocalist Eric Means. Laying down equal parts philosophy and commentary, Means freestyles are as poignant and evocative as Flobots or Lupe Fiasco. You can catch this fantastic trio take the stage at the Tree House Lounge, 1/22, with Mary El and Edjacated Phools. -Jonathan Goodwin

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Issue #45 (Winter 2016) of The Deli NYC is online!

Lurvely Deli Readers,

We are proud to introduce you to our Winter 2016 issue of The Deli NYC, featuring on the cover Brooklyn songwriter, producer and multimedia artist Brittany Campbell, portrayed by NYC comix artist Lale Westwind. Inside the issue - besides dozens of talented emerging NYC bands and artists - you'll also find a feature about the undiscovered genius of Captain Baby and the ongoing saga of Manhattan DIY art space and venue ABC No Rio

READ IT ONLINE HERE! It will be out in print around January 15.


Edjacated Phools, The Milestones, and Western Star blew up at the Warehouse, 12/19

A chilly, dark Saturday on the other side of some tracks in Baltimore found this writer attending a killer show at The Warehouse, a small venue with the perfect amount of sketchiness and featuring cheap beer, plenty of graffiti, and a working toilet. First onstage was Western Star, a four-piece heavily influenced by alt and classic rock. High octane riffs, croony vocals, and evocative lyrics, the band is equal parts Modest Mouse and Van Zant Band in their musicality. Frontman Max Jeffers brought great energy to the stage, hair flying, and the instrumentals were fantastic, recalling the stylings of Jimi Hendrix.

The Milestones are quickly becoming an establishment-worthy act in the Baltimore scene. Cobbling together an indie style with dance-worthy melodies, the band put on a fantastic show, gripping the audience's attention immediately and not letting it go until the last guitar note faded on the amps. A particular standout song, UFO (see below) was great live, with expert guitar pieces and crashing drum segments. The band recently put an EP called Honey and listening is highly recommended, especially for a highway playlist.

Closing out the night was rap-reggae-rock fusion group Edjacated Phools. A band of seven, they surprised with their rap skills and seamless reggae techniques. Slick guitars, sick, booming vocals, and melodic keyboard playing brought together an exciting and fun performance and their audience interaction was on point. With semi-political and feel-good verses, the Phools are reminiscent of Sublime and Dirty Heads, yet distinctive in their own right.

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Alternative rock group The Sometimes release new EP, Standoff, and play Jammin' Java, 1/5

If the likes of REM or Counting Crows spent some time in the Appalachians, you'd end up with The Sometimes. This band has a sound built from their Virginian roots, incorporating Americana and bluesy undertones into an alternative framework. Hailing from Fairfax, the quartet put out a new EP, Standoff, that inspires nostalgic introspection and features eloquent repetition. Energetic power chords and moderately raspy vocals produce a standout vibe, so don't miss The Sometimes play Battle of the Bands, 1/5, at Jammin' Java in Vienna. -Jonathan Goodwin

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