You’ve probably already noticed that we’ve elected rock-legends-in-waiting The Stone Foxes as our Artist Of The Month. We’ve got all sorts of great Stony Foxy stuff heading your way – starting with this great playlist of the band’s favorite songs. Enjoy!
Blues, rock and country – they’re labels so simultaneously vague yet culturally ingrained that sometimes they seem to have lost all meaning. Pretty much any guitar based album in existence – and, to some extent, a number of genre-fusing hip-hop and electronic projects too – carry elements of this all-American heritage, be they proudly displayed as centerpiece artistic choices or tucked away as subtle undercurrents. Whether it’s sound, attitude, aesthetic, or a combination of all three … there are certain touchstones guitar music will always have to adhere to. Its just part of the deal, folks.
With this in mind, it’s easy to come to a natural conclusion: that to define a band as ‘blues-rock’ with hints of ‘country’ is to render them somewhat unremarkable. A drop in the ocean. A thumbprint on a skyscraper. In some cases (hell, let’s say in most cases) this wouldn’t be too far from the truth. In the case of California’s foot-stomping avengers The Stone Foxes, however, listeners can rest assured that their sound – while steeped in the vast, winding heritage mentioned above – is far from generic. Let’s put it bluntly: a rock to the head has always been a rock to the head since the first brawl between two cavemen. That doesn’t mean a perfectly-placed rock to the head in 2012 doesn’t carry with it a real fucking impact. Some things just don’t seem to mellow with age.
The Stone Foxes throw out rock with a capital R, blues with a capital B, and country with … well, maybe an odd smattering of uppercase font. Put it all together, and you’ll no longer be interested in literary deconstruction anyway – you’ll be too busy (in the time-honoured fashion of another American tradition) throwing your hands in the air like you just don’t care.
Hope you’re enjoying our season of cool stuff from our Artist Of The Month Thao & The Get Down Stay Down – and we really hope you’ll keep your beady eyes on BAMM.tv towards the end of this week, when we’ll be unveiling an exclusive competition to win some personalised merchandise from the band themselves!
In the meantime, we’ve got something else very cool to share – we asked lead singer Thao Nyugen to pick her five favorite performances from the sprawling (and awesome, and amazing, and exclusive, and numerous other descriptive terms) BAMM.tv archives. Here are her choices:
Will Sprott – A Dog Will Love You When Nobody Else Will
A dog will indeed love you when no-one else will. Unless of course they’re those hell hounds from the end of Ghostbusters. You want to avoid those.
Tambores Julio Remelexo – Go Down
Ironically you won’t be feeling down after chilling out to this …
Forro Brazuca- Salsa De Reboco
Time to swing the night (or afternoon) away with these salsa shenanigans.
Lulacruza- Rio Contento
Enjoy the multi-layered melodies of this dynamic duo.
Great Lake Swimmers – Still
A memorable and moving song from their legendary performance at the 2011 BAMM.tv showcase at the SXSW festival.
The eagle-eyed among you (well, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration – we’ll just settle for ‘those among you who have taken a look at our blog this past week’) will know that alt-folk-rock stars Thao & The Get Down Stay Down have taken the throne as our coveted Artist Of The Month.
As usual, then, we want to find out which tunes are tickling their earbuds right now. So we asked frontwoman Thao Nyugen to spill the beans. Here’s her top five …
Aha- “Take On Me’
Classic 80s pop with one of the best videos ever made.
‘Get down, stay down’ may sound like a direct command (imagine your clichéd ‘give me fifty’ drill instructor barking it in your ear) – but such straightforward bludgeoning really isn’t the style of Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, the San Francisco act who just happen to be BAMM.tv’s new Artist Of The Month.
This isn’t to say that there’s no immediacy to their music. Thao Nyugen and her mainstay cohort Adam Thompson (the band members have previous included Frank Stewart and Willis Thompson) have crafted a body of work which – while loosely fitting within umbrella terms like alt-rock and folk-rock – opens up with multiple listens to reveal rewarding intricacies, unique vocal and musical flourishes, and melodies within melodies.
You may think you’re getting everything with a surface listen – and an enjoyable surface listen it definitely is – but sentiments like ‘you are a dead man/I just have to shoot the gun’ (‘Body’) and ‘I come back because the punches always hit the same’ (‘Trouble Was For’) show off a beguiling complexity. Think of similar creative multi-taskers like Broken Social Scene, Jim Ward, Cat Power, Fiona Apple and Feist – not a bad line-up to be mentioned alongside – and you’ll be close.
Or, y’know, just listen to them. (click ‘more’ to continue)
We’re still celebrating our Artist Of The Month – the wonderfully talented singer-songwriter Diana Gameros. Coming up tomorrow is an exclusive poster giveaway and on Thursday we’re offering the incredible chance to spend some time in the studio with Diana.
Today, however, we asked Diana to pick her five favorite videos from the BAMM.tv archives. Here are her choices …
Infantree “Living Proof”
If you’ve been paying attention this week - and we hope you have, because there’ll be a test afterwards – you’ll know that singer-songwriter Diana Gameros is our Artist Of The Month. As well as exclusive interviews, performances and giveaways, we also asked Diana to reveal her favorite music of the moment. Here’s what she had to say:
Want to hear them for yourself? Just click that ‘more’ button and let’s go …
We’re happy to announce that wonderful singer-songwriter Diana Gameros is our Artist Of The Month. Yesterday we featured an exclusive in-depth article and interview with Diana, and – later this week – we’ve got some amazing giveaways in store (including the chance to see Diana live, and even to spend time with her in the studio!).
Today, however, we’re simply going to show you why we’re such big fans. Here’s a special message from Diana herself:
And click on ‘more’ to see a selection of performances from the BAMM.tv archives, as well as Diana’s appearance in our exclusive documentary ‘City Of Fog’. Sit back, chill out and enjoy …
Time for another BAMM.tv Artist Of The Month feature: a selection of great music, exclusive articles and prize giveaways (among other things) from one of our favorite up-and-coming artists. This month we put San Francisco singer-songwriter Diana Gameros under the spotlight …
Soulfulness is a hard thing to quantify. People are a varied breed, and experience tells us it would be foolish to go all-out and categorise emotional response – music that leaves one listener cold may well prove to save the life of another. Music may be universal but the gamut of reactions works on a far more personal level – an innate form of relativism that both unites and separates us all.
Sometimes, though … sometimes you just have to appreciate the resonance of an artist. Opera may not do it for you, but you can’t help but quiver at the bombastic authority of a tenor or soprano. Heavy rock could well be the last thing you’d listen to, but you’ve have to be a cultural zero-mark not to marvel at a virtuoso guitar solo. As for emotive, Latin-tinged, classical acoustic songwriting? That might be outside your sphere altogether, but – frankly – if you’re not massively moved by the heart-stopping performances of Diana Gameros, then you might as well nail that coffin lid down now.
Luckily – here at BAMM.TV – we are big fans of emotive, Latin-tinged, classical acoustic songwriting. And we’re even bigger fans of the heart-stopping performances of Diana Gameros.
If you’ve been paying attention - and we hope you have, because there will be a surprise test later – you’ll be aware that we’ve chosen the amazing San Francisco three-piece Geographer as our Artist Of The Month. Why? Because they’re capable of heart-stopping performances like this, that’s why:
To enter, just answer this question in the comments below:
What’s one cover song you think Geographer would knock out of the park?
We’ll pick the five best answers as the winners! The deadline is Monday 28th January, and we’ll in touch with the lucky victors next week – so remember to include your email when you register to comment (the email will remain unseen and private, of course.).