Month: February 2014

Recommended Song: Michael O. – World Without Meaning

Michael O. - World Without Meaning

Michael O. – World Without Meaning

The Mantles Michael O. (Michael Olivares) will be releasing his debut 7″ and LP via the newly formed Fruits & Flowers Records this Spring, and the first track, “World Without Meaning”, is a mid-fi swaying beauty. While not as full sounding as previous Mantles records, it’s far from just an echo of those sweet songs, standing firmly on its own while providing much excitement for what’s to come on the rest of the album.

Recommended If You Like: The Mantles, Juan Wauters, The Troggs

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Even When They Stand, They Sit – A Sort Of Review of Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks at Paradise Rock Club

Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks are not to blame.

Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks are not to blame for the shoegazers we’ve become.

It’s finally happened, much sooner than I expected – like a sniper in the shadows pulling a shot that ends in red mist, my youth has been blown away. Without want, desire, or effort I’ve become old – the inevitable fate of the survivor…I guess.

At the young age of 34 I’ve reached a disgruntled state that has me waving a white flag on the future status of what I call Rock. I’ve gone to too many shows where I expect to be swept up in the excitement of Rock and Roll – allowed to forgot my everyday worries, and be entranced by bright lights, good music, and a raucous crowd.

Shit. Maybe I’d even pogo around like an idiot, sweat too much while feeling alive, free, and without self consciousness. But for whatever the reason when I attend a show as of late it’s an affair riddled with crossed arms, furrowed brows, and a bunch of young assholes who haven’t lived enough to make a mistake that allows them to make a real decision.

Crap. I really have crossed a border.

I know. I’m old, disgruntled, and you should get off my lawn. These are likely middle aged growing pains that I feel while not going to the real shows of today – but I doubt that’s all they are – going to a show like Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks shouldn’t feel docile, safe, and sterile. You should sweat, move from the spot you stand, and get lost in a sway you don’t completely control.

But what the fuck do I know. I’m 34 years old.


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Uncle Tupelo – I Wanna Destroy You (Soft Boys Cover)

This is me on any given night.

This is me on any given night.

I couldn’t find Uncle Tupelo’s excellent cover of The Soft Boys classic “I Wanna Destroy You” anywhere on the web. So decided to record it off of my 7″ copy and share with the World. This is an Honor Roll worthy cover – and a convergence of a lot of great things. The video’s me on a typical night at home. Drinking a ‘Gansett. Watching the Celtics. And listening to Music.

Recommended If You Like: Television, Post-Jangle, Rock and Roll, Jay Farrar

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Recommended Song: Ruby Rose Fox – Raggedy Ann

Ruby Rose Fox

Ruby Rose Fox very likely has the best voice in Boston.

Ruby Rose Fox‘s voice is absolutely arresting in its quality. Her stratified vocal approach can make the simplest arrangement dense with emotion – and “Raggedy Ann” is the perfect example of this. The previously unreleased track has an accompanying video which approaches the song much like the twittering bright guitar that sweeps in the background – it stays out of the way – and lets Rose Fox’s voice place handcuffs on your ears as you willingly let yourself be taken away.

Ruby Rose will be performing in a few weeks down at SXSW – and she’ll be back in Town at Atwoods Tavern on 03/22/14 with Sarah Borges.

(Video and audio by Roger Metcalf)

Recommended If You Like: Peggy Lee, Patti Smith, Leonard Cohen

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Recommended Song: The Men – Different Days

The Men - Different Days

Bands like The Men give hope during a frozen winter. (Photo – Sacred Bones)

Finding a band that strictly carries the torch of Rock in these future days of 2014 is like stumbling upon the rarest of truffles in some snow capped forest. Over the years The Men have been labeled as punk, psychedelic, garage, and noise – but all those genres really add up to is Rock, and rock they do. They’re a band that barely has its own website, and have all but shunned any form of social media – which may be as punk as it gets in these modern times.

When I hear The Men have a new record on the horizon my teenage self becomes stupid with anticipation. “Different Days” is off their forthcoming LP Tomorrow’s Hits and it’s done the opposite of quell my excitement – I may have even sprouted a few pimples in its honor.

The track begins with some drunken yelps and a nakedly insistent bass which propels the song into motion as driving guitar and organ accompaniment take you to a place of good. For those of us consistently searching, in a forest or otherwise, it’s nice to know that between massive quantities of vastness hope lies about, waiting to be plucked up.

Recommended If You Like: The Woolen Men, Bad Times, Dinosaur Jr, Rock

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Visions of the Unexcused Video Premiere & Giveaway: TURCHI – When You’re Lost, It’s All A Sign

TURCHI - When You're Lost It's All A Sign

“When You’re Lost It’s All A Sign” is an early 2014 standout 7″. (Photo – Alissa Whelan)

TURCHI play a style of rock & blues that harken Beggars Banquet era Stones coupled together with the veiled introspection of Kurt Vile. Reed Turchi’s conversational lyrics and expressive guitar paint scenes of despair wrapped in hope. “When You’re Lost, It’s All A Sign” accomplishes this deft trick of push and pull – combining beauty, despair, and promise.


Below you’ll find the Video Premiere for “When You’re Lost, It’s All A Sign” – a desolate tribute to endurance that rings truer than the loudest gong. The first of the Unexcused to share this track via FaceBook or Twitter will receive a beautiful 7″ pressed by Fat Elvis Records. Just share and @ Reply either Visions of the Unexcused or @digital_derek and we’ll reach out your way for more information.

Lastly, you’d be wise to join me at Atwoods Tavern on March 2nd for some killer craft brew and to see TURCHI live for a special matinee show at 4:00pm. A guaranteed way to ease out of a wonderful weekend.

Recommended If You Like: Jay Bennett, Mark Lanegan, Kurt Vile, Stones

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