One of those unexpected treats that validates digging through the crates. Pardes may be neither hip nor happening, but proves herself a pro when it comes to the three pillars of singer-songwriting: lyrics, vocals, and composition.
Wallmann recently moved west to direct jazz studies at Cal State East Bay, but Minor Prophets pays tribute to his former home of New York City with a breezy palette and an inviting, complex finish.
Bedroom ravers rejoice: local talent Martin lays down a seventy-minute set of stylish European house featuring three of his own compositions (and one from brother Christian) plus selections by other producers here and abroad.
Perhaps little more than one man's mission to front a band featuring four beautiful women. Though Downey's lyrics reflect reputable morals, his songs soil adult-contemporary's already beleaguered name.
A promising pop mess (think broken down Broken Social Scene) from seven Berkeley high school students. Some songs have yet to find themselves, but surprisingly many are downright glorious.
A song- and beat-based sound collage sourced from original material (local musicians on upright bass, drums, violin, and electric guitar, plus Stevedood on djembe, synth, and a jar of mayonnaise) that remains listenable throughout.
Blogs are abuzz over a new six-song EP from a garage rock band called Foxboro Hot Tubs, with suspiciously Billie-Joe-ish vocals. Like they did with the Network, the members of Green Day appear to be not-so-subtley releasing music under another pseudonym. Stop Drop and Roll is currently available for free download on their web site. No word yet on show dates.
These sincere, middle-of-the-road country-tinged tunes from singer-songwriter Armstrong (and friends) neither offend nor particularly impress, but could be just the thing for the right time and place.
Straight outta Cal, Scene of Action's angsty, Muse-ish sound needs time to lighten up and develop beyond its influences. Still, not bad for a debut EP.
The virtuosic music of Berkeley-based, internationally recognized guitarist Gyan Riley flows between flamenco, jazz, raga, classical, and Satriani-esque shredding without so much as a hiccup.