[MP3 Playlist] Indie Dojo (October 2015 Round #1)

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We have officially kissed summer goodbye. It’s time for beanies, beards, and sad but sweet “I’ve been holed up in a log cabin writing songs by a fire place” tunes. While we’re over here, knitting you a scarf of Indie Dojo’s to roll you right into the seasons of change. ‘Cause, we’ve got your neck

Habitats
Boogie Waltzer
Hollow Wood
Oh My God
Luke Sital
Singh
Chelou
Youre So Good
Ghostly Kisses
Such Words
Aidan Knight
All Clear
Valley Maker
By My Side
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[Electro-Pop] A R I Z O N A – Where I Wanna Be

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A R I Z O N A
Where I Wanna Be

With only a smattering of singles to their name, the globe spanning trio founded in New Jersey known simply as A R I Z O N A wields a sonic fluency far beyond what their modest catalog would indicate. Taking much of their direction under the guise of pop structuring, A R I Z O N A have been measurably successful adding touches of soul, R&B, rock and disco groove into their evolving aesthetic, and latest single “Where I Wanna Be” marks another foot forward in their short sonic evolution. “Where I Wanna Be” pushes off with a four-four kick drum, bent guitar loop and the kind of vocal pitching that would make Sir Kanye tip his hat in approval before a buttery vocal track takes a welcome hold of the entire tune. If it wasn’t for Zach Hannah’s lush vocal we may have missed the rest of A R I Z O N A’s careful instrumentation, but we couldn’t help but get swept up in their carefully layered synth work which almost steal’s back the spotlight. There are a number of reasons to fall in love with this one, and while we only had time to delve into a few, we suggest you take the reigns and let A R I Z O N A sink their hooks into your listening rotation today. Stream “Where I Wanna Be” above.

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Connor Leimer – Postcard [TMN Premiere]

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Postcard
Connor Leimer

Pop, rock, reggae and folk are amongst the eclectic mix of genres in which Connor Leimer explores through his latest record. His debut single “Postcard’ kindly lends itself as a jazz piece consisting of a warm brass section and infectious bass lines, solidifying a framework for his raspy yet organic vocals, resembling a tone similar to jazz artist Jamie Cullum.

“Postcard” explores running away to the coast, or the gardens with a loved one. Planting familiar images for us to relate to and understand. Connor writes by “blurring the boundaries” between genres and allows his work to “take [him] wherever it needs to go”, following an extremely authentic process of songwriting. The band provide a consistent accompaniment of harmonic variation, as the instruments mould together and move simultaneously, guiding the relaxed melody and conversational lyrics comfortably from phrase to phrase.

Having grown up in the suburbs of Kansas City, Leimer’s majority of work is influenced by his days in high school. Travelling away from home is unfamiliar, as he questions the desired prospect of reaching the shore, and includes imagery in association with the ocean, such as sailing away on a boat, or the sea air in [her] hair.

Check out Connor’s ongoing ‘Dorm Room Tour’ around the US in the link below. He’s undoubtedly one to watch over the coming months.

http://www.connorleimer.com/tour/

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Solomon Grey – Choir To The Wild [TMN VIDEO PREMIERE]

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If you haven’t fallen in love with Solomon Grey yet, it’s only a matter of time. Their latest EP Selected Features dropped earlier this month, and it’s been garnering support from publications across the globe. Amongst many reasons for the fawning adoration of both critics and fans alike, is the fact that this London-based duo Joe Wilson and Tom Kingston can’t be placed into a neatly wrapped, genre-specific label.

A testament to that versatility can be found in a deep listening session through Selected Features, which showcases elements of larger-than-life, cinematic soundscapes, obscure hip hop vibes, and soulful grooves. Even though you won’t find it on the EP, “Choir to the Wild” had us enamored on first listen truly capturing the Solomon Grey’s genre-melding style.

That oh-so-gorgeous song not only highlights the stunning vocal harmonies between these two, but also the ability to encapsulate listeners with understated, and uncomplicated instrumentation. And, we’re admittedly giddy to showcase that, as we bring you an intimate look at their show at Sofar London on May 27th, 2015. Take a look below, but be warned – you’ll be helplessly lost for a few, brief minutes.

If you find yourself in London on November 11th, we strongly suggest you catch this duo live. Click here to pick up some tickets, before it’s too late.

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[Album Stream] Favored Nations – The Great Unknown

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We’ve been steadily supplying you Ninjas with bits of globe-spanning super electronic group Favored Nations’ looming LP, The Great Unknown, in the form of singles “Always” and “I Can See You” and as the LP sees the light of day today, we thought it was a perfect time to let our inquisitive readership get their full share. Quite the lengthy release, totaling a whopping 18 tracks, The Great Unknown more than satiates our listening passion for Favored Nations’ unique yet highly accessible sound. So, let’s start Friday with the complete vision of Morgan Phalen, James Curd and Surahn “Sid” Sidhu’s epic album project The Great Unknown below.

Purchase The Great Unknown on iTunes here, and for registered Spotify users, enjoy the full album stream below.

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Drenge Discuss New Album, US Tour, and Their Wild Music Video [TMN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW]

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If you don’t have heard of this Sheffield-based brotherly duo, it’s the perfect time to start paying attention. Eoin and
Rory Loveless make up Drenge, who are currently kicking off a sizable U.S. tour in support of their second album, Undertow, which released back in April. The album is stacked, top to bottom, garnering the adoration of fans, press, and even the great David Letterman.

After being turned on to the wild, raucous, and highly addicting “We Can Do What We Want,” we reached out to Eoin ask a few questions before we head out to see them in Denver next week.

TMN: Hey guys. Thanks so much for taking some time to chat with us before your upcoming show in Denver. How’s the tour going so far?

Drenge: We’ve enjoyed two weeks touring around the UK and we’ve just finished our second show in the States in Philly. It’s been great. We’ve known both the bands we’re touring with for a long time so it’s been great just hanging out with our friends. There’s no “getting to know one another” which can be difficult when your schedule is packed with soundcheck, travel, shows, press and sleeping.

TMN: We’re stoked to have you guys out here, especially at one of our favorite venues, Larimer Lounge. Have you guys ever been to the Mile High City before?

Drenge: Nope, it’s our first time. We always seem to play coastal shows in the states, so it’s a real treat to play somewhere more central.

TMN: This tour is currently in support of your Sophomore release, Undertow. We can’t help but notice the myriad of influences across the album. Let’s talk about “Running Wild,” which definitely has some grungy undertones. Did you guys grow up listening to a lot of bands from that Seattle scene?

Running Wild

Drenge: On Running Wild, we were going for a psychedelic game show vibe. There’s a refrain that runs throughout that if I was ever to host something like a dysfunctional “Family Feud” would be played whenever we move onto the next round. But yeah, we listened to Nirvana almost exclusively when we were kids.

TMN: On the other hand, we can’t help but hear a little bit of iconic punk influences, like the Ramones, Sex Pistols, etc in the catchy, anthemic style of “We Can We Do What We Want.” Did that happen by chance, or were you guys paying homage to someone you looked up to? Or, neither?

We Can Do What We Want

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Mew’s Johan Wohlert Discusses Touring, the New Album, and What’s Next [TMN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW]

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Every Mew fan out there is fully aware of how much this tour means. For years, we’ve been patiently waiting, occasionally checking the band’s facebook page for tour dates, listening to our favorite songs over and over, and wistfully hoping for the five-year hiatus to come to an end. Well, it has, and not only do we have a collection of new favorites, but we also have the opportunity to catch this storied band at numerous venues across the US.

We were fortunate enough to catch one of Mew’s shows down at SXSW, but couldn’t find the time to sit down with them. Luckily for us, and you, we locked down a chat with Johan Wohlert ahead of their stop in the Mile High City this Saturday.

TMN: Hey Johan! Thank you for taking some time to chat with us. It’s been quite some time since you’ve had a full tour in the states! How long has it been?

JW: I think it’s been 5 years.

TMN: How’s it been going so far?

JW: It’s been great, to be honest. The states have always been really good to the band. It seems like there’s a lot of excitement around the fact that we’re back here.

TMN: We’re really excited to have you in Colorado on October 3rd.

JW: Absolutely!

TMN: We had the pleasure of catching you at SXSW for your make-up show after the rainout. We’ve been waiting a long time to see you play live and it definitely did not disappoint. One thing we caught is how well you capture your studio sound in your live performance. How much of an emphasis is that for you guys?

JW: The general rule is to try and be well prepared. A live set should never be exactly the same as a record, but we try and at least make it sound really great. I think, in the case of this new record, we spent a long time before we even started recording. We made sure the songs were sounding up to snuff with just the five of us playing them in a room. We knew that they would work in a live setting.

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