Album Review – Pennyroyal – Baby I’m Against It


By Becca Martin

“ A little bit country and a little bit rock-n-roll”- I never thought that I would quote that but it is true.  Pennyroyal plays music that makes you want to tap your feet.  This is a band on the rise. “Baby I’m Against It” is exceptional.  It is their second release and was produced/engineered by the talented Ed Ackerson at Flower Studios in Minneapolis.  Ed is well known for BNLX & Polara and just recently produced The “Songs for Slim” project. Pennyroyal’s sound is robust with a purity of form and function in it.  Elements of alt country are heard with a soul of rock and roll. Continue reading


Film Review – Every Everything the music, life and times of Grant Hart


By Becca Martin

Bechard’s “Every Everything…” continues his documentaries of MN musicians.  This one featured the subject almost exclusively including band footage, which is a departure from the other docs.  At face value people may view this film finding a gentler, kinder version of the Grant Hart than the one we knew after Husker Du disintegrated. However, it delves deeper than that.  Grant the artist is revealed; his opinions of art were quite interesting as were his influences such as William S. Burroughs and Patti Smith amongst others. Time has seemed to heal a lot of the dramatic Husker Du wounds. Grant opens up quite wide revealing fatherhood, and the loss of his mother and home. Bechard has succeeded in a place he hadn’t before, really helping the audience to understand the artist.  After all isn’t that what all artists want-understanding?

This Film is showing Wednesday, November 13th at Landmark Center. As part of the Sound Unseen Film Festival

“Where Do You Want” – Brilliant Beast


Review by Christine Mlodzik

“Where Do You Want” is the latest album by Brilliant Beast. In a nutshell, the album is seven solid tracks of shoegaze with distortion, featuring two lead vocalists – a guy and a girl, brother and sister to be more exact, who each bring their own unique style and still create a very cohesive sound.

Brilliant Beast is Jordan Porter (vocals, guitar), Hannah Porter (vocals, guitar, violin), Mark Kartarik (bass) and Eric Whalen (drums).

“A Child On Fire” opens the album with Jordan on vocals. I was quickly struck by the infectious and unforgettable hooks. And while I enjoyed each of the tracks on the album, “Nepotism Shakes” is my favorite with its shimmery guitars in combination with Hannah’s vocals, where she sounds much like Camera Obscura’s Tracyanne Campbell.  “Someone Else Did” closes the album with a hint of rock and a pretty sweet bass line.

The band lists My Bloody Valentine, Stone Roses, Sonic Youth, Pavement – even the The Buzzcocks and The Clash – as influences. I hear a little bit of Oasis in the mix as well.

“Where Do You Want” is simply a great record, but check it out for yourself and you’ll hear what I mean – it might just be the perfect addition to your music collection.

Brilliant Beast’s “Where Do You Want” is brilliant and anything but beastly.

Brilliant Beast’s release show for “Where Do You Want” is Friday, November 8, at Cause in Minneapolis, along with Crimes, Fury Things and Bad Bad Hats.

Review – Robots From The Future – Entendres


By Kristine Volovsek

The first 15 seconds of Robots from the Future’s Entendres made me think I was getting into some sort of weird dub step album.  However, when the vocals and guitar came in on the first track, my fears were subdued.  Throughout Entendres they play with robotic, computer-esque, and synthy sounds which I found rather fitting and fun.  Though the name Robots from the Future, to me, connotes something new – perhaps a sound that hasn’t been done before – this album kept reminding me of other bands.  My impression is that I can hear who, perhaps, influenced Robots from the Future but I can also hear how they’re trying to expand on those sounds and create their own.  Continue reading

Road Reports…


By Becca Martin

See behind the stage into the revealed lives of Minnesota musicians on tour in their own words.

“One of the best parts of being on the road is listening to and discovering/rediscovering artists together as a band.  Our vehicle of choice has a CD player and a radio that works sometimes, so the ease of an iPod was out.  We spent some time scouring record stores looking for the albums we were craving.  We came out with an awesome Sam Amidon album, “I see the sign.”  It has a beautiful cover of R. Kelly’s “Relief”. I think we listened to that song at least 40 times and that album almost as much.  There was also a dark, rainy hour in which we dove deep into Lisa Loeb’s second album. “Firecracker.”  This was great in a very different, 90’s nostalgia sort of a way.”

-Jenny Kapernick (The Ericksons)

Music Review – Verskotzi – “Lemon Heart “


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