Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Music journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie artists. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome. See my complete profile
This week's NYC Scene Report features the rock infused singer-songwriter stylings of Kevin Devine, Americana/indie rock act Paul & The Tall Trees, J Hacha De Zola putting his unique spin on an Ariana Grande song, and dark pop artist Shana Falana not liking being lied to.
* Kevin Devine is going to be incredibly busy this fall, as the Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter has a new album, titled Instigator, due out October 21st, and a national tour that begins October 3rd, and lasts through December 11th.
Not the type of singer-songwriter you find at your local coffee shop, Devine has significant rock elements in his music. A prefect example of this is his latest single, "No History."
“No History” is a collection of personal vignettes centered around the September 11th attacks, and the emotion sees Devine harnessing a rock sound. The result is downright captivating.
* You don't normally stroll through NYC expecting to see forest life, but if you happen to stroll through Brooklyn there's a chance you may come across some Tall Trees in a music venue in the form of Americana/indie rock band Paul & The Tall Trees.
The group, led by Paul Shalda, whose musical history includes two decades of playing in bands of various genres, and being a guitarist for Charles Bradley, will be releasing their latest effort, Our Love In The Light, on October 21st. Our first taste of that effort is the single "Next Time."
With a chorus that embodies much of what's important about life in just a few simple words, "Next Time" is a beautiful song that admits personal faults while continuing the quest to be a better person. Check it out.
* If you know me, you know that I'm a fan of Ariana Grande. It seems as though column favorite, New Jersey native J Hacha De Zola, is an Ariana Grande fan, as well, as he recently covered her song "Bad Decisions."
According to De Zola, who released his latest album, Picaro Obscuro last month, his goal for his cover of “Bad Decisions” was to make it completely unrecognizable until the chorus hits. “At that point, I hope the listener says, ‘Holy shit, this is an Ariana Grande cover?!’”
Whether you love Ariana Grande, or simply love music that defies categorization, you’re going to want to click play on this one.
* I'm pretty big on telling the truth, and I think Brooklyn-based dark pop artist Shana Falana would appreciate that, as her latest single, “Lie 2 Me,” expresses how she isn't a fan of being lied to.
If you appreciate sludgy, fuzzy, pop-rock – the kind you might hear at a dingy NYC venue well past midnight, with your shoes sticking to the floor, and your emotions soaked in cheap alcohol – you're going to love "Lie 2 Me." (side note: was that too graphic of a description of my life?)
“Lie 2 Me” is off of Falana's upcoming album, Here Comes the Wave, due out October 21st. Give the song a listen, because the truth is Shana Falana is really good.
For more of the best of NYC’s indie music scene, come back next Wednesday, and check out the archives for previous columns.
B-Listers are a select group of artists that were featured in my Artist Of The Week series that ran every Monday from April of '06 to April of '11. All of these artists have two things in common; extreme talent, and a flight path far too under the radar for my liking. They took on the title of B-Listers as they embraced being featured by me, Adam B. Check out the AOTW Archives for all the interviews.