More Music from the Inbox: 15 April 2012

Just a reminder that next Saturday is international Record Store Day.  Please make an effort to support your local record store.  It’s an opportunity to connect and re-connect with fellow music nerds.

Maybe you can look for some of the following releases.  

This time Juliette Jagger takes care of the final filtering.

Artist: Kojo “Easy” Damptey, “Illusion”

Album: THE EP

Kojo is a man with a message. I appreciate an artist who wears honesty on his sleeve and who sounds like he makes music because sometimes we just hurt. THE EP, which focuses on the social narrative of an African immigrant living in North America, is an off the beaten path approach to some heavy subject matter. Illusion has touches of reggae, R&B, and soul, and a dreamy synth organ that’s smooth as hell.

Sounds like: The truth of the matter. 



Artist: Squarepusher “Dark Steering”

Album: Ufabulum


Squarpusher is an extremely well thought out marriage of sonic and visual proportions. “Dark Steering” is the physical extension of an “apocalyptic nightmare” stitched together with exhilarating cinematic appeal. This song feels exactly like it sounds; it’s full of rushing emotion and speed.

Sounds like: Escaping earth



Artist: Eight And A Half, “Go Ego”

Album: Self-titled debut

I’m really lovin this record right now for a couple of different reasons.  As a fan of music, it’s pretty cool to see artists from various well-known Canadian bands come together this way (The Stills / Broken Social Scene), but this is also just a really killer song.

Sometimes certain words – “there goes my ego, there goes the pie in the sky, I’m standing naked at the edge of my life, oh it’s over” – just sum it up and that’s all you really need. 

Sounds like: gracefully accepting defeat



Artist: Cadence Weapon, “Conditioning”

Album: Hope In Dirt City


Cadence Weapon is Roland Pemberton; a bridge, rhythmically straddling genre and language lines with clear-cut emotional intent, intelligently plucked from the brain of a young Canadian hip-hop poet.

Sounds like: a new school vernacular meets an old school aesthetic



Artist: The Rabid Whole, “Future”

Album: Refuge

Sometimes I share bands because they deserve to be made an example of.  The Rabid Whole is an electronic hard rock hybrid kind-of-a band; reminds me of Jakalope with a little NIN, which is actually fitting since their mixes were done by the same guy. That being said, the music itself is pretty good if we’re talking radio play standards, but my problem lies in shit like this…

Andreas Weiss, the band’s guitarist describes them as “providing an exit, an honest and refreshing alternative to the bullshit we’ve been fed and it’s noticeable. Anyone that hears what we’ve come up with is hopefully going to have a hard time ignoring it.”

Okay, cool. I dig it, and I think that’s great. More bands should be that bold and confident in their own sound. So what’s the problem? The problem is that when I scroll down to the bottom of the press release I find out that the band looks like this:

Really, are we still doing the gimmick thing? If you are a rock band that knows you’ve got something great, then let your music do the talking, you just shut up and be great. Don’t fuck yourself by cheesing the whole thing out and looking like you just jumped out of an episode of YTV’s Reboot.

Sounds like:  Jakalope…remember them?




Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 37451 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

3 thoughts on “More Music from the Inbox: 15 April 2012

  • Yes! Absolutely. Don't try and get creative whatsoever with your look. Just wear some plaid shirt and army shorts the last band that had to get a day job threw back to the goodwill. Find some geek glasses, those scream "my band's music is so much better than that other dude with geek glasses' music, even though we look the same." Nobody pays attention to any bands that try to stand out a little, you just get confused with characters from children's shows by the media who sorta like your music.

  • It's only a matter of time before the world is completely bored of the usual. It's nice to see a band be fearless and put some effort into standing out from the pile. Dare to be different, ruffle some feathers! Great music too!

  • Let's look back at yester-year to bands like Kiss and singers like Chery and Madonna and what about today's huge stars like Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, LMFAO and even Saskatchewan's, Sheep Dogs. These stars got notice. Yes, the music reels you in but if you look like everyone else and you are new on the market, people don't remember. It is the look that people will remember. People will say, "I love that song, "Future" by that new band…what was their name?? Oh yah, they are called The Rabid Whole. They were that group that Alan Cross liked the music but dissed their costumes on his blog. They have that futuristic look." I agree…dare to be different and memorable. Your music is great so will definately sell!


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