Category: Visions of the Unexcused Premiere

Mint Pillow Debut EP – Terms & Conditions

Mint Pillow - Terms & Conditions (Artwork - D. Hixon)

Mint Pillow – Terms & Conditions (Artwork – D. Hixon)

I released my debut “solo” EP last week called “Terms & Conditions” – I placed solo in quotes because I had heavy collaboration from talented artists I happen to call friends.

I’ve been listening to so much music due to DJ-ing and have been digging pretty deep in the record bins, so I wanted to put some of that to use in my own music. The album has a skeleton that’s based on samples I pulled from favorite tracks – and then looped and freaked with those samples further. Adding live instruments, drums, and synths and then passed on to my collaborators for them to rap, sing, or play their own instruments over.

The result is “Terms & Conditions” an eclectically weird EP that balances between electronic, hiphop, breaks, and left-field indie.

Contributing Artists:

Recommended If You Like: Dr. Dundiff, Glad2Mecha, James Pants, Boards

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Recommended Song: Ben Morey & The Eyes – New Life

Ben Morey & The Eyes - Mt. Doom

Ben Morey & The Eyes – Mt. Doom

For fans of the Rochester, NY based indie pop band Howlo, the announcement of a Ben Morey solo album is big news. Known primarily for punchy indie rock, Mt. Doom finds Morey exploring more of a cosmic country sound. Featuring the efforts of nearly 30 members of the Rochester indie rock community, including turns from members of Pleistocene, Green Dreams, Maybird, Northern Spies, and of course, Howlo – Mt. Doom is a bold and lush soon to be classic.

To celebrate the release, Visions of the Unexcused was granted an exclusive stream of the tune “New Life” – which finds Morey’s folk sound enhanced by ghostly steel guitar & mournful back-up harmonies.

Recommended If You Like: Phosphorescent, Bill Callahan, Smog, Howlo

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Visions Premiere: The Ghost of Electricity “The Ritual”

The Ghost of Electricity's Bonez EP drops 2/16.

The Ghost of Electricity’s Bones EP drops 2/3/16 via Spark & Fizz.

The music of The Ghost of Electricity – a recording project featuring Ray McNamara; is unabashedly adventurous & unique. His upcoming EP, Bones, will be released on 2/3/16  by Spark & Fizz Records – and it’s a sonic sculpture whose psychedelic shape morphs with repetitive listens, forming a topography that makes for constant (and rewarding) change. There’s a meditative quality to the EP that is restrained in presentation but complex in composition – Zen Chaos. “The Ritual” is the opening track off Bones and shimmers you into the jangled depths this  EP contains.

Recommended If You Like: Bibio, Dirty Projectors, Buffalo Daughter

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Video Premiere: The Longwalls – Zombies! – Live at The Bridge Sound and Stage


Fresh from taking part in the always fantastic Outlaw Roadshow in NYC – The Longwall’s have released the first of a ten-song live video from their  record release show back in March (due out in early December w/audio). Fittingly for this Halloween weekend the song they’ve chosen is “Zombies!” – one of my favorite tracks from their 2008 debut Field Guide for the Zombie Survivalist.

Filmed back in March at The Bridge Sound and Stage for the release of their absolutely stellar Gold Standard an album which will be featured on Visions upcoming “Best Of The Year” podcast. I was lucky enough to be present for this show. Beer was packed at the front of the stage from the still too high snow banks outside – and the mood inside was positively captivated – something this video, and the upcoming video series encapsulate wonderfully.

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Visions of the Unexcused on WEMF Radio

Visions of the Unexcused on WEMF

Visions of the Unexcused on WEMF Radio

I’m stoked to be DJ-ing live today (01.04.15) from 5:00-7:00pm in the studio at WEMF Radio. WEMF is a new LIVE online radio station specializing in great music and the best personalities in Boston. In a modern world riddled with the likes of  iHeartMedia & musical algorithms – WEMF is a very much needed breath of fresh air, and is as close to real radio you’ll get in 2015.

This is hopefully the first of many such sessions – follow live tonight, and hit me up on Twitter (@TheUnexcused) with any requests or feedback. I’ll be offering the mix as a podcast after as well. Huzzah!

Listen Live!

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Lost While Found: Visions of the Unexcused at State Park Bar

Mint Pillow enjoying the night with friends. (Photo - K.Chandler)

Derek (aka, Mint Pillow) enjoying the night with friends. (Photo – K.Chandler)

Last Wednesday I had the fortune to spin vinyl at State Park Bar in Cambridge. State Park is the Sister restaurant to the highly revered and loved Hungry Mother – and is quickly becoming one of many reasons you should spend more time in Kendall Square.

The faithful sit during the congregation. (Photo - K. Chandler)

The faithful sit during the Mint Pillow’s congregation. (Photo – K. Chandler)

Located on the same block as West Bridge, Friendly Toast, & Cambridge Brewing Company – State Park offers a sophisticated & laid back vibe that’s disguised as a dive bar. This said, the food, cocktails, and staff exhume the opposite of dive – and pump out A+ Southern inspired dishes, drinks, & charm that leave mouths happy and hearts content.

State Park offers and affordable menu that's both creative and fun. (Photo - K. Chandler / J. Nguyen)

An affordable menu that’s creative & fun. (Photo – K. Chandler / J. Nguyen)

The scene offered the perfect compliment to the music featured on Visions of the Unexcused, making for a fit that was seamless, ideal, & preferred. I spun a set that included favorites from Garage, Indie, African, Funk, and Hip Hop – many that can be heard on previous podcasts – and as the tunes echoed throughout the bar – smiling ears and eyes couldn’t deny the symmetry between music and location.

Garage, Indie, Post, and Funk 45's & LP's provided the night's soundtrack. (Photo - K. Chandler)

Garage, Indie, Post, & Funk 45’s & LP’s provided the soundtrack. (Photo – J. Nguyen)

As a cherry on top we had a New England staple, which also doubles as a favorite, Narragansett Beer, be a generous sponsor, providing the Unexcused Faithful (that’s you!) with some drinks sans charge in support of our Visions. This is hopefully the first of many nights we get lost together- and I hope we find each other with the music next time around.

Once your delicious meal's complete activities such as shuffle board demand your attention. (Photo - K. Chandler)

After food, activities like shuffle board demand attention. (Photo – K. Chandler)

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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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Visions of the Unexcused Video Premiere: Detroit Rebellion – “The Detroit Rebellion of ’67”

The synched archival footage make for some stunning shots in Detroit Rebellion's latest video.

The synched archival footage make for stunning shots in Detroit Rebellion’s latest video.

Detroit Rebellion’s music teems with fidgety unease, a touch of anxiety, and an undeniable groove. Their primal approach has the repetitive nature of a machine gun and the artistic touch of a seasoned blues man. We’re lucky enough to premiere their latest video for “The Detroit Rebellion of ’67” and the striking archival footage taken from said riot matches their music distinctly – or is it the other way around?

Detroit Rebellion will be playing with Party Pigs, St. James & Apostles, and Sour Doo Dahs at Dusk in Providence, RI this Thursday.

Recommended If You Like: Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Kysuss, Dirty Blues

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