The Persian Leaps – “Praise Elephants”

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Review by Christine Mlodzik

With a name like the Persian Leaps, I expected something exotic, a sound that would require me to buy armloads of incense to set the listening mood. Not so! The band describes themselves as a noise pop band from St. Paul, Minn., and you know what? That’s exactly what they are.

The Persian Leaps is Drew Forsberg (vocals, guitars), Brad Hendrickson (bass, guitars, vocals) and Mike McCloskey (drums, vocals), and their debut EP “Praise Elephants” features five hyper-catchy tunes that whiz by in less than 30 minutes.

“Praise Elephants” is a nod to 80s post-punk. “Hard Feelings” starts things off on the right foot with pristine and clear harmonizing, brimming with influences by The Smiths and Morrissey. Each of the songs are short and snappy, with some sharp edges (Hard feelings on parade / Took their lemons – choked on the lemonade) and endings.

Next is “Not That Brave” and what follows is my favorite track on the album, “Silent Treatment.” It’s damn catchy and after hearing it just once, it’ll burrow into your subconscious and take root, its melody coming back to you when you least expect it. The EP is rounded out by “Exponentially Devoted” and “Sleepless.”

The Persian Leaps is a group with potential you can’t ignore. Check them out.

http://thepersianleaps.com/

Music Review – Verskotzi – “Lemon Heart “

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By Becca Martin

“Lemon Heart” is Verskotzi’s first full-length album release. The band is Joey Verskotzi, Izaac Burkhart, Ian Allison, & Grady Kenevan. The album was recorded and produced by Izaac Burkhart at The Color Lounge in NE Minneapolis. Continue reading

Review -Beachmaster – Love Lake

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By Brandon Henry

Forget the purified waters of Lake Minnetonka, do yourself a favor and dive head first into the sunny sounds of Love Lake.  On Beachmaster, their second album, these guys take over where Weezer left off, combining simple, catchy songs with multi-layered, jammed out riff rock that’s awash in summery reverb.  Featuring songs about great landladies, bicycles, and chasing love, each filled with memorable hooks and swooning ooos and ahhhs that make Beachmaster a great summer album. Continue reading

Dear Data – “Wait Until You See”

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Dear Data’s new album is entitled “Wait Until You See” and it seems so fitting after a listen. I knew nothing of this band and with a name like Dear Data I expected a quirky, Devo-esque vibe, or maybe even an obscure Star Trek: The Next Generation reference thrown in, but what I got what was none of the above. Continue reading

Niki Becker “Intermission”

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By Christine Mlodzik

As I listened to Niki Becker’s new album, “Intermission,” I read this paragraph: After the loss of her dog and a really bad year, Niki found herself with a set of songs about grief, longing, and trying to move on. The songs represented a certain moment in life where everything seemed to be on hold and about to change, an Intermission. Continue reading

Crunchy Kids’ Mint

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By Kristine Volvsek

Minneapolis hip-hop group Crunchy Kids just released their second album, Mint. A little less jazzy than their first album Crunchy Kids, Mint allowed the band to experiment with new sounds. Continue reading

Review – Joey Ryan and the Inks – [pause]

Joey Ryan & The Inks [pause.] Cover

By Victor Alvin

Joey Ryan and the Inks are no strangers to polished-glittering pop, and their new EP [pause.] is more proof that straight-forward pop music still has its place in this dark and damaged world. Continue reading

Review – Youth at Large – Students

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Review By Rich Horton

When first hearing the name of the band Youth At Large, I immediately thought of a young raw punk band. I was totally wrong on that account and was pleasantly surprised with the musical and refreshing offering, “Students”. Continue reading

Hart Lake Mystery EP

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Review By Christine Mlodzik

Hart Lake Mystery’s Web site says their EP was recorded in two days in August 2012. The one thing it doesn’t say is how long these guys have either known each other or played together because just one song in and you can hear this is a tight, solid band.

At its core, this five-song EP is melodic with catchy pop hooks. When “Sunny All The Time” starts, it’s clear Hart Lake Mystery knows know to write smart and listenable songs. And while each is good, two stand out for different reasons.

First, “Wrote You Off” throws in a hint of country twang with extra attitude. It doesn’t turn the song into pop country, but it does make it even more fun.

Second, “Solace Seeker” sounds a whole lot like the ‘Mats. That’s not a comparison I’ve made before or will make lightly, and I’d be surprised if they don’t hear that hear it more often.

“Ice Cream Heaven” circles around for another country-tinged track as the EP finishes with “Key On A Chain.”

If this EP is Hart Lake Mystery’s way of sticking their toe into the local music scene’s waters, next time, just dive right in because we need to hear more.

http://hartlakemystery.bandcamp.com

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