WELL, HI, LO: There’s been lots of buzz-buzz-buzz about the debut album from Lo Talker, and now we’ve arrived at the week of its release. Officially, the album—A Comedy Of Errors—will be released Friday, Mar. 19, courtesy of notable and award-winning Canadian label Arts & Crafts. Andrew Shepard (Roadkill Ghost Choir), founded this debut album, and it is just a joy to hear. Its indie-isms are polished within an inch of platinum, and its melodies feel pulled from some secret box of tunes. The band is filled out with Shepard’s brother Zach on bass, Rhett Fuller on guitar, Jeremiah Johnson on drums and Alec Stanley on guitar and keyboard. Key standout tracks are the Tommy Keane-ish “Automatic Love” and the smoothly driving “No Champagne.” Wake up early on Friday and greet the sun with this one. Head to lotalker.bandcamp.com to make your plans and, if so inclined, smash that “like” button over at facebook.com/lotalker.
LAST CHANCE: This is the last week that nominations are open for the 2021 Vic Chesnutt Songwriter of The Year Award. The nomination process is super easy: Anyone can nominate anyone, within reason, and artists may even nominate themselves. I explained most of this last week, but here’s a quick recap: There are two categories this year: those for whom music is a career and those who play for fun. There’s no hard-and-fast standard for either, though, so the choice is yours. The winner of each category gets $1,000, and all finalists will receive $250. The winner of the Play For Fun category also receives recording time courtesy of Amplify at Nuçi’s Space, and the Career winner receives a promotional package from Team Clermont. New this year, with the first ones occurring this past January, are the organization’s workshops and seminars, which seem to have been fairly successful, even given our current social restrictions. Also, per the organization’s website, “Individual, one-on-one instructional sessions are still available from all instructors,” even though the initial workshops are over. You can find out more about those, nominate some songwriters and more over at vicchesnuttaward.com. The award was created and is administered by the Rotary Club of the Classic City of Athens, and I encourage you to look them up at classiccityrotary.org.
PHONE, HOME: Chances are good you’ve never seen your favorite local band or business skewered via memes with such care and skill as done by Phillip Brantley (Palace Doctor, Modern Skirts, Blue Blood, et al). When he’s not busy with that jibber jabber, he’s making new music under the project name Terminally Phil—which is itself a nice nod to existentialism —and has a new four-song EP out now. All four songs were recorded in his apartment and, as he reports, straight into his phone. It’s named February 2021 (or stylized as Feb ’21), and the powers that be want you to focus on the lead single, “Putz.” Admittedly, that’s a catchy beat-box-based tune and totally fine in its own right, but my tastes run more toward the gentle introspectiveness of “Prospects Grim.” Word on the street is that this is just a taste of things to come, and a full-length album is planned for later this year. Check this out at terminallyphil.bandcamp.com, and check in with the man himself at facebook.com/terminallyphilmusic.
WAKE UP: Because it came out right smack dab in the middle of our long winter’s nap, the EP titled Kind of Warm For a Lonesome Home by Sleepy Co. slipped through the cracks. Well, it’s been given another leg up, thanks to being associated with/re-released by/something to do with Athens label Echobass Records. I’m gonna tell you right now: This three-song record cooks on high. The crunchy and Krautrock-ish opening track “One Season Between” kicks things off loudly and a little defiantly, but things quickly slip into fishbowl glassiness on the quieter but equally spun “Naudical” before the crumbling and collapsing stomper “Timeout Boy” finishes the whole thing off. Now that I’m thinking about it, was Sleepy Co. possibly named after the Olivia Tremor Control song “A Sleepy Company”? I dunno, but it wouldn’t surprise me. Featured on this are John Fernandes on clarinet and Emileigh Ireland on vocals on “One Season Between.” Ireland is also credited in the notes for contributing the “overarching album concept,” which is a nice thing to mention. Listen for yourself at either auxvids.bandcamp.com or echobassrecords.bandcamp.com.
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