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Live Review: Blunt Mechanic, And I Was Like What?, Lee Corey Oswald - April 8th at Berbati's Pan

 

Singer, guitarist and songwriter Ben Barnett has a new sound, a new band, and a new LP - World Record - coming out April 20th. I got a chance to check out his band, Blunt Mechanic, at Berbati’s Pan last Thursday, along with Portland groups And I Was Like What? and Lee Corey Oswald.

The crowd was sparse and the atmosphere quite dark, but that didn’t keep any of the bands from rocking out hard. The Oswald duo opened the show and reminded me once again how much I love listening to acoustic guitars and a sweet harmony. However, I have to admit that their harmonization was a little off live, and they at times sounded like they were trying to yell over each other. They got the crowd all warmed up and raring to go though, and once And I Was Like What? stepped on stage, the crowd was ready to groove to their Americana pop beats.

This all-bearded band really had their shit together and it's hard to believe they are still unsigned. They sounded fantastic live, and I absolutely loved the band’s use of the electric violin.

By the time Blunt came on I was starting to feel the fatigue setting in, so I was hoping they were going to bring some mad energy to the stage. Lucky for me they did. The best was definitely saved for last in this case, and Blunt was just as much fun to watch as they were to listen to. Barnett is not new to the music scene; in fact, he released 10 albums with the band Kind of Like Spitting and works as the Music Director of Seattle’s School of Rock. All of his experience shows on stage, and his enthusiasm and passion pours over you like a banana split with a cherry on top.

All three bands have upcoming shows in the Northwest, so keep your eyes glued to The Deli and your ears tuned to your local radio stations.

- Deanna Uutela

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Casting Call for Free Energy’s “Bang Pop” Video!



Did you see the “balloon video” and think “those Free Energy dudes look like fun guys - I’d love to be in one of their videos”? Well, you might have your chance! If you are available for shooting April 16 - 19, come down to Urban Outfitters (1627 Walnut St.) tomorrow Tuesday, April 13th from 5 - 7pm for your chance to be cast in Free Energy’s “Bang Pop” video. There are over 100 parts to be filled for the video. For casting, please bring a photo ID. If you are under 18 years old and want to be in the video, you must have a parent or guardian with you. Come dressed to impress, especially the ladies! - The Deli Staff

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Earth Day and The Giving Tree Band

On Earth day (April 22nd) The Giving Tree Band, known as "Greenest band in the land," according to Mother Earth News, will put their previous two album on “Fire Sale” and donate 50% of the proceeds to Global Green USA. The band is also performing at University of Chicago's Earth Day Festival on the 23rd. Here is how the fire sale will work, on the 22nd the albums Unified Folk Theory (2007) will sell for $4.99, and Great Possessions (2009) for $3.99, or both for $6.99 (51 tracks total) exclusively via the band’s website. Currently you can download two tracks for free from their site to hear what the band sounds like if you aren’t familiar with their down-home bluegrass sound.

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Steel Train release new album in June, single out now

Steel Train is a cool NJ based avant-pop band that has been around for awhile but for some reason hasn't been detected by our music radars until now. We like their openly pop songwriting contaminated by schizophrenic arrangements - which skillfully and playfully quote and juxtapose all sorts of musical references. In "Turnpike Ghost" for example, the preview track from their 5th release out in June, the band's post/punk approach (reminiscent of some sort of Animal Collective/Clash hybrid) meets David Bowie's attitude and dramatic delivery, and Queen's wacky epic changes and guitar solos. The band will release a 7" limited edition vinyl of this song with a b-side cover of BULLETPROOF (by La Roux) for this year's installment of Record Store Day (April 17th.) Currently on tour, Steel Train will be back live in NJ on April 30 for the Hoodwink Festival.

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Shots EP

The Vindits have a new ep called Shots, which they will be releasing on April 22nd at Beat Kitchen. This is the bands third ep and follows their 2009 ep Overactive Sundays. The bands plays dark and gritty rock music and is sure to entertain. The band will also be appearing on 89.5, Vocalo.org on April 16th from 2-3pm.

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