Talk about glowing reviews, sheesh!  Pitchfork emerged from the dawn this morning with an 8.1 review of the new 2xLP/CD by Debo Band, Ere Gobez, on FPE Records.

“This is a powerful, and, perhaps, inspirational record: it certainly inspires dancing, filling spaces and capturing a dynamic live sensibility. It’s no surprise that this is a band that takes up a great deal of room. With so many members, some in Boston, some as far away as Addis Ababa (violinist Kaethe Hostetter established a String Center in the Ethiopian capital), Debo is true to its name, which means ‘communal labor.’ The community of Debo Band includes a bold, shimmery horn section, complete with sousaphone, but also slick guitar, a tight rhythm section, orchestral strings, an accordion and, on occasion, a masinquo—a one-stringed Ethiopian fiddle. There’s a quaver in lead vocalist Bruck Tesfaye’s voice that is in keeping with Amharic-language singing style, but it is a powerfully pure energy that sits on top of each song, rising  along with all the other instruments.”



We love it when a title of an album actually informs the listener about the level of awesomeness of said album. In the case of Native Sound‘s new LP from Miserable, Uncontrollable, that release has proven to be uncontrollable, unstoppable, and altogether unfuckwithable!

Spin commented that “the tracks unfold slowly, and with a palpable sense of purgation… a nine-track work of dizzying lo-fi sadgaze,” while My Old Kentucky Blog offered even higher praise –  “Uncontrollable, the beautiful and gut-wrenching debut LP… It is impossible to not respond and relate to the raw sadness and pain conveyed in the charring lyrics and disorienting guitar work that blurs from moments of chaos to uneasy stillness each song to the next. While immediate in its connection, the album plays out like a knife slowly being pushed deep into the center of your soul.”

The Bay Bridged have been so fascinated with the release, they interviewed Kristina Esfandiari (Miserable) on creating, mental illness, & feminism.  Billboard called her track “Violet” one of the best songs of the week, and Nine Circles mentioned of the album that “Her voice is effortless, airy and full of depressive beauty. Her work with Miserable is not merely, as the name suggests, mono-dimensional sadness. Rather, Miserable creates a depressive and emotional landscape using minimalist instrumentation, layered vocals, plenty of reverb and Kristina Esfandiari’s best weapon: her incomparable voice.”

while CVLTNATION have premiered the video for “Stay Cold” (watch below).



Let’s Pretend‘s newest signee, Erin Tobey, has cultivated quite a following in her native Indiana, and her new LP/CAS, Middlemaze, is just around the corner – to be released on 6/3.

Stereogum has premiered “Work It Out” from Middlemaze, stating that it “…was written over the course of several years and is, at its core, an album about growing up and leaving youth behind. Its latest single, ‘Work It Out,’ exemplifies that purgatorial state exceptionally well. Tobey explores a series of situations that could easily end in catastrophe and then asserts what the ‘responsible adult’ way of handling things would be: ‘If it is not pretty/ Then do not make out/ If what’s burning is not yours then/ Do not put the fire out.'”

NPR premiered “I’m Young” calling it “…”measured and assured… Erin Tobey’s blossoming music opens just at the moment of revelation. After more than a decade, the Bloomington singer-songwriter returns with a reflective second album…cosmic country”, while Paste mentioned “…Tobey’s voice has developed considerably from youthful urgency to something measured and assured, reminiscent of Juliana Hatfield or Bill Callahan. She sings of that other time with such tenderness and understanding that, even in its quiet, it feels as if the song could burst.”


(photo by Chaz Mottinger/courtesy of the artist)




Honey‘s debut LP/CD for Wharf Cat, Love Is Hard, was unleashed on the world on April 15th, and brains everywhere have begun to shimmy, shake, and altogether rattle about with all things Honey. Delicious!

Pitchfork, upon reviewing the track “Monk”, said that it “… invites a more ominous interpretation – that of submitting to black-majick forces beyond your control, with the song’s echo-drenched vocal tics and subliminal synth oscillations suggesting the casting of some sinister spell. This is a deviant song of devotion for lovers and Lucifer alike.” Impose said of Love Is Hard “They’ve produced a ripping seven-track debut LP, Love is Hard, which lives up to its name – it’s not for the faint of heart. That’s not to say that it’s inaccessible; earlier this month Honey shared “MFLH” (stands for Mother Fucker Long Hair), a psych punk anthem with a melody that sticks.”, while Subbacultcha added “…the band, with members who used to play with Amen Dunes and Psychic Ills, delivers seven tracks of swirling guitars for those who like it loud, fast and sweaty – it’s the Brooklyn punk sound at its finest. True, love is hard, but honey is sweet, and we love honey.”

Noisey/Vice interviewed the band, noting, as ultra-scribe Byron Coley did that, “there’s a consistent vibe … that puts me in mind of The Mirrors to Friction to Death of Samantha … Something about the way Dan Wise’s guitar mixes with both his singing, and that of Cory Feierman’s, reminds me of naught but a Lake Erie fish fry. And the rhythm section with Cory on bass and Will Schmiechen on drums bears down on these twinned howls in a way that makes it possible to catch whiffs of the Dead Boys at their sharpest.”  The Fader have premiered the video for “Monk” & interviewed the band as well (see video below!)

All this AND…HONEY are heading out on a summer tour with Barbed Wire!

May 29th – Brooklyn, New York (Wild Kingdom)
May 31st – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Second Empire)
June 1st – Columbus, Ohio (Cafe Bourbon Street)
June 2nd – Indianapolis, Indiana (State Street Pub)
June 3rd – Chicago, Illinois (Auxiliary Art Center)
June 4th – Detroit, Michigan (El Club)
June 5th – Toronto, Ontario (Faith / Void)
June 6th – Montreal, Quebec (La Vitriola)

+ more TBA!

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