Hello and welcome to FTA’s list of what we are excited for this Bandcamp Friday, aka every music nerds favorite day! A bunch of us weighed in on what we’ve been into lately and we’ve got plenty of goodies old and new for you to dig into over a wide range of genres. But don’t take our word for it, dive into these tracks/albums and judge for yourself. Feel free to let us know what you think and tell us your suggestions.
It’s the first BC Friday of 2023 and we’re stoked for another big year of killer tunes. We had a bunch of great lists over the course of 2022 which you can peruse for plenty of inspiration on variety of tunes for you to explore. Check them out here: April, May, June, September, October, November and December.
Kate Hoos- Editor In Chief
Debbie Downers– Eat My Skorts. I’m not sure if this bratty Australian punk band ever released anything else, but I love this EP which I happened upon randomly while searching for something else on the Helta Skelta Records BC page (they have a bunch of other cool releases you should check out too, most notably Gaffer‘s demo which was a BC Friday score for me in 2020). And who doesn’t love a happy accident?! Described on the page as “6 tracks of short, fast and choppy DIY punk following a similar route to bands such as Kleenex/Liliput and the Petticoats” that’s a very apt descriptor. This was released in 2018 and as of yet I haven’t found anything else by them, but here’s hoping more is soon to be revealed!
Mr. Marcaille– No Snare No Headache. The internet, oh the internet. It’s an unyieldingly horrible cesspool most of the time, but every so often, your nightly doomscroll can pay you in large dividends. Just such a thing happened to me recently when I was on Instagram and saw a video of a dude playing a cello in his underwear while simultaneously playing drums with his feet and screaming…to which I said SIGN ME UP! The video didn’t show a name but eager to learn more, I googled “cello metal dude” and was quickly met with an article titled “Watch This Nearly Naked Bloke Play Death Metal On A Cello In The Park” from the NZ website The Rock (which seems to have the similar gonzo-esque/snarky approach to things that I have been more heavily leaning into lately, so you know I loved it). The article also yielded said undie clad cello metal bloke’s name, Mr. Marcaille.
I’m just starting to dig into his catalog, but there is just something so soothing about listening to a one man death metal band scream the perfect ode to navigating NYC on an given day “Fuck Off and Die” (that’s not what the song is really about, rather my personal interpretation). He is currently in the number one spot of my list of bands I absolutely must see. There are many videos of him playing shows and festivals around Europe on YouTube and I will be watching the Internet swamp like a hawk for the news that he is heading to the hellfire shores of Murica.
Various– If The 20th Century Didn’t Exist It Would Be Necessary To Invent It. This came out in 2002 on the now defunct label 5 Rue Christine (which at the time was an offshoot/the more experimental arm of Kill Rocks Stars) and I was recently reminded of it when I was thinking about my first introduction to Lightning Bolt when I was writing up their December show in Brooklyn (see pics).
Repeating what I said in that writeup about it: That time period was sort of the end of the heyday of the cheap record label/zine comps where you could get 20-25 songs for a few bucks and discover all sorts of new shit to explore, perhaps even finding your new favorite band. It was always (and still is) supremely satisfying to strike musical gold this way, much more so than playlists are now or downloading random MP3s were during the same era. You got the “brand assurance” of knowing the label or zine releasing it so you could bank on the fact that it probably was good/well curated, but you still had to have a little skin in the game and make a bit of an investment which yeah, sometimes turned out to be a bust, but a lot of times it paid off in spades. And pay off that comp surely did, I played that CD over and over again until it eventually got lost, but I never forgot the music I learned about from it.
This comp was my first introduction to many bands I went on to love: Lightning Bolt, The Sick Lipstick, Dilute, Generic aka The Advantage, Deerhoof and more. It will get you a lot of bang for your buck and I highly recommend it. (If CDs are more your thing, you can also get a copy on Discogs for a pretty good price, something I think I probably will do soon. I’ve been recently re-buying a lot of these 90s/early aughts comps—or picking up some for the first time—since they were so formative for me discovering new stuff in that era.)
Brianna DiGioia- Contributing Photographer
FACS– Negative Houses.
Linda Smith– Till Another Time: 1988-1996.
Magik Markers– 2020.
No Joy– Wait to Pleasure.
Say Sue Me– When We Were Together.
Chantal- Contributing Writer
DAKTYLOI– Mineral Screen. “An ecstatic slush binder.” Ambient sounds made by manipulating everything from tape, vinyl and an Assmann Universa dictation machine.
Dylan Mars Greenberg– BADWORLD. Greenberg is a local transgender musician and video artist who I was lucky enough to catch live recently. Here you’ll find 80’s synth sounds with a glimmer of Magnetic Fields. The melodies on these songs are insanely catchy. Watch out for next time she plays a show.
Miami Nights 1984– Sentimental. Nostalgia-tinged synthy beats for driving down the neon-washed streets.
SKYBRIDGE– VICTORY IS LIFE. Skybridge is a NYC-based production duo that I came across on a Tumblr blazed post. The soundtrack to the best racing video game you’ve never played. Expect synths and wild guitar licks.
Edwina Hay- Contributing Photographer
Bruise Control– self titled EP.
The Delgados– Peloton.
Kate Bell- Contributing Writer
Billy Nomates– CACTI.
Bria– Cuntry Covers, Vol. 2.
Meg Baird– Furling.
The Prof. Fuzz 63– Cinnamon Sea.
Strange Neighbors– Party of None.
Mike Borchardt- NYC Scene Editor
The Cult of Chunk– Cult Answering Machine. As they head out on their first extensive tour of the United States to spread the word of Chunk, learn what you can do help back here on the home front. Kool Aid? Oh yeah!
Ilithios– Panic. This EP didn’t get the vinyl treatment as its beautiful LP predecessor Florist, but it packs a mean punch so it’s most definitely worth scooping up in digital format.
Ray Rusinak- Contributing Photographer
Arbor Labor Union– Yonder. This Atlanta quartet has been putting out music which they refer to as “transcendental twang” since 2016. That’s quite an apt description of what you’ll hear on Yonder. If you’re a fan of artists such as Ryley Walker or Garcia Peoples with their cascading guitar dominant cosmic neo-psychedelia, then Yonder ought to be right up your alley.
Isaac Alexander– Future Sanctuary 1 and Future Sanctuary 2. Little Rock’s very own Isaac Alexander attempted a quirky marketing trick with FS1&2. He released #1 at 11:59 PM on December 31, 2022 and #2 at 12:00 AM on January 1, 2023. I’m not sure if this little trick garnered much more in the sales of these two albums but I will say that the songs which pack these two discs speak for themselves. Between the two you get 24 well crafted songs that are introspective and thought provoking. Presented in a relatively (for the most part) quiet and soft singer/songwriter style within the Americana genre, Alexander, who runs and operates a Little Rock advertising agency as his day job ought to appeal to fans of Water Liars or Father John Misty.