Thursday, August 28, 2008

review me patiently, review me honestly

it's not too often that you can take an honest listen to indie-pop and like it beyond the fun and zip of indie-pop. with brighten's early love ep though, any music listener can take something away from it. of course it's the same fun, well-written, tight melodies we expect from brighten, but this ep marks a clear line between the adolescent record making of their past and real life, song writing of grown up's with grown up struggles and feelings. not to take away anything from brighten's two previous independent releases. it's never enough to stay the same and brighten has been foreced to grow up and mature in the past years since king vs. queen was released in 2007.

for justin richards, song writer and brighten frontman, he has a lot to write about these days: the well-documented disaster with an unknown label (if you don't know, don't ask: they won't talk about it), releasing king vs. queen independently, broken relationships, changes in the band, being broke, and wrecking their van last spring have been more than enough lyrical fuel to light the bonfire.

not that anyone in brighten would have a bad attitude though. for brighten, to be angry or bitter about any of it would represent a bigger failure than quitting and giving up.

"nobody ever writes about real love anymore. i wanted people to feel love and hear truth when they listened to it. i just tried to bring positivity back into music" says richards.

if the music industry made sense, brighten should leave behind the flashbang-graveyard that is indie-pop and become a household name. but as with most great bands, industry success remains tantalizingly elusive for brighten. and while they continue to be courted by records labels of all shape and size, the right deal with the right label continues to be justin's white whale. studio eyes will be watching this week as the early love is released (itunes, smartpunk) and as long as the early love is judged by it's quality and not the hype of the marketplace, brighten should be well on their way - with a van and with gas in the tank and on tours that make sense.

catch brighten with a novel form on saturday, september 13th at solid ground cafe.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

ravens & chimes

if you were inside my computer screen looking out at me you would see me happily bouncing around in my teal office chair. you would wonder what has me so happily dancing around & i would tell you "ravens & chimes!!!" this is my favorite new musical discovery so far this month. the tempo changes a lot in their songs, so each song is like a musical journey into a world with beautiful voices & pianos & i keep imagining a marching band somewhere in there. sorry but this is one of those bands that i like so much i have to write run-on sentences just to try to express my feelings of satisfaction & excitement. i want all their music on my ipod right now so i can live in this world until i'm ready to leave (which will be never because i love it too much.) Here is a bunch of their music on hype machine. i just found this video of them performing live at a radio station. once you get past the dj talking for 40 seconds the magic starts. enjoy!

carmel doesn't phase us (but it does suck)

here's a couple of photos from last weeks' break in / juvenile destruct-o-mania at the cafe. it's disheartening, but we press on. thanks to all of you who emailed us, called us, left some comments offering to help clean up, etc. it means a whole lot. see you monday, september 8th for colour revolt and atherton.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

apparently i've been missing out.

i found kina grannis's youtube channel on accident when i was watching videos on fourfour. her video showed up after the mariah carey video i had been watching ended. This girl is freaking talented! turns out she is the #3 most subscribed to musician on youtube (according to her site) so i guess i'm the last to know about her. anyway, enjoy some lovely music from her. she talks a lot after videos so you can either get to know her sweet personality. if you're like me, you don't have the attention span to watch that part, so just press pause & move on to the next video.

a coconut story

once upon a time on a beach somewhere, a palm tree grew from the sand. from that palm tree came two happy coconuts. one day a storm came thru & blew those coconuts from their happy home. lion came & kicked them past flamingos & into a ping pong game where one of the coconuts beheaded a ping pong player. then they rolled south to mexico where they played golf & flew with rubix cube hot air balloons. the coconuts feel from the sky into a lovely purple river where they met a friendly pineapple who gave them a lift over a waterfall & dropped them off in a sailor's boat where they sailed adjacent to the sunset.

Architecture in Helsinki - Like It Or Not from helsinkids on Vimeo.

enjoy this hand-stiched music video from architecture in helsinki.

Friday, August 22, 2008

broken into to, but not broken

according to police reports, at sometime around 4 am this morning our beloved cafe was broken into and vandalized.  there's definitely a lot of damage, but most of it was petty vandalism.  while we're not sure who did it, we are sure that our shows will go on as planned and if anything, it has only strengthened our resolve to make these last shows our best ever.  please help us by spreading the word that we're "not dead yet" despite this recent challenge.  we'll keep plugging along and we sure hope you'll join us.  we're sad that some people chose to do this, but we're thankful no one was hurt and we're excited for colour revolt on monday, september 8th (for discount tickets to that show, head over to our facebook and get on the rsvp list).  we're also extremely thankful that the fellowship (the church that owns the building) already started clean up and repairs this morning and are committed to helping us make sure that the colour revolt show will happen and that things will be ready to go.

thanks for all your support and love and willingness to help us pick up the pieces.  as always, we do this for love of people and music, certainly not stuff and money!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

save money on cafe shows

go add us on facebook and save money on cafe tickets. literally. here's what we've cooked up in our continuing effort to make the cafe fan friendly:

1. go to our facebook page (click on the logo).
2. under events on the right side, click on colour revolt.
3. RSVP for it (if you're going).
4. when you get to the cafe the night of the show, just tell the door that you're on the RSVP list and we'll charge you $6 to get in (for everyone not on the list it's $8).

we think that's easier than buying online tickets with their service charges and also better than asking bands to drive all over salt lake to sell you advance tickets. we're trying it on the colour revolt show and the brighten show and we'll see how it goes. we hope it goes well! our goal is full shows, happy bands and happy fans. while you're there, check out some photos, add a few of your own and if you can, tell some friends as well.

Monday, August 18, 2008

best show ever? we think so

we could not be more proud to announce this show! every band is incredible. SO worth a few bucks on a monday night. and it's our first show back so we're hoping you'll lend some support! advance tickets are cheap for that very reason: it's sort of our thank-you to all our supporters and friends! $8 at the door is still a bargain!  atherton and paul jacobsen will round out the night.  we're not quite sure how we got so lucky to get all this talent in one room; let's just pretend we're good at all this.

Friday, August 15, 2008

another show

and also:

september 26th: catherine, sever your ties and athens.

good stuff.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


two things to update you on...

1) the end is indeed near

due to economic pressures, the church that owns the cafe has to put it on the market. they hope to sublease it for the next 3-5 years until the economy turns around a bit.

what does this mean for the cafe and the shows there? well first off, they won't last forever. we will however book shows until the very last day possible! when that will be though, we have no idea. it won't be right away, but it is looming in the near future.

will we do shows somewhere else? well we have no idea. we make about $20 a year on shows after paying all our bills so it's unlikely we could find a place with rent that cheap (if you know someone though, let us know).

are we mad? absolutely not. the church that owns the place has always been amazing to us and allowed to us to run shows out of their building at a minimal cost. their love for what we do has actually hurt them financially as they probably should have leased the space to someone else long ago (someone who earns more than $20 a year). they've been upfront and honest with us every step of the way and we wish them all the best.

2) in the meantime

in the meantime we have some REALLY great shows lined up:

september 8th: colour revolt
september 12th: the heyday
september 13th: brighten
september 16th: the photo atlas
september 19th: boomsnake, snuffaluffagus
september 23rd: paxtin, the anix, cromwell
october 6th: in:aviate, the stiletto formal, man without wax

so if it has to end, what a way to do it. we'll add more shows to that as much as we can, we're hoping you'll show your incredible love and support until the fun has to end. we are still looking for local support, if you're interested, hit us up.

and seriously, we don't do this for money so to have all the support you've shown us is really huge. it's why we do what we do. we're sad to see it end at the cafe, but you never know what the future holds.