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Ripley Snell's 6 Natural Flavors 4.23.14

In the five months since his November release of Fall Denim, Ripley Snell has been busy working on collaborations and clothing lines, and is already putting out his sophomore album, Natural Flavors, which is a six-course menu of imaginative lyricism. He draws inspiration from be-bop, hiphop and R&B, funk, metaphysics, and his Portland surroundings.

The titles of each track on 6 Natural Flavors are named after the often unnatural and additive ingredients listed on the back of a Coca-Cola. Tied with Snell's lyrical content, the album serves as a metaphor for the sugarcoating of political and socioeconomic problems which have grown over time into the everyday norm. The album is said to be inspired by and dedicated to the individuals that live on W. 3rd Ave in downtown Portland.

Speaking his mind and keeping it real, Ripley Snell is a storyteller giving insight on Portland nights, homelessness, and racism with candor. Jazz infused “Caramel Colors” speaks on “gentri-fried chicken" and feeling isolated from the Portland Spirit because of his style. “Phosphoric Acid” has whirling string loops, primal urges, and some hilarious personal hygiene disclosures. “Caffeine” begins with a sub octave vocal sample of the words “easy beats" then quickly gets to tackling the topics of STD’s and dying on the street. “High Fructose Corn Syrup” begins with some good advice:  “Let’s do things well... let’s do ‘em well,” then jumps into a flow of colorful metaphors about Monsanto's lucid dreams and hanging out with fat polar bears on frozen lakes "drinking blue chip shares." While Snell is getting lyrically deep inside issues, Neill Von Tally's beats throughout the album feature jazzy and playful instrumentation and vintage audio sampling including everything from the triangle bell to string trios and brassy melodies.

Ripley Snell will celebrate the release of Natural Flavors by performing the album in it’s entirety with a public all-ages show at the NW Portland art gallery and clothing store Upper Playground at 7pm sharp. There will be access to a free download of the album at Ripleysnell.com for a limited time when the album drops April 23rd. In the meantime, check out his album Fall Denim.

 - Brandy Crowe

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Church Bar's One Year Anniversary with The Lower 48

A good way to get yourself back on salvation’s path the Monday after 4.20 (and Easter in case you forgot) is to visit one of Portland’s churches. And fortunately, you won't feel out of place if you go to Church Bar's one-year anniversary party this Monday. Portland’s rock and roll supernovas known as the Lower 48 will be ringing in the celebration. This band has been evolving their sound for many years and has come to give themselves a defined sound consisting of vintage pop, folk, with a grunge overtone. Their vocal harmonies and exploding bass lines reel in the listener and then they hit you with a secret weapon as Nick (the drummer) overhauls the music with a trumpet. So, there’s one way to start your week on the right track. - Colin Hudson

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Palabra Release 'Manos Luminosos y El Cubo Blanco' 4.19.14

The threat of Palabra never performing again was once alluded. Now, the jazzy latin prog trio consisting of Zach Evans, Johan Wagner and Papi Fimbres are performing at Habesha Lounge this Saturday night for the release of their second album Manos Luminosos y El Cubo Blanco which mysteriously means "luminous hands & the white cube." Palabra give off effortless vibes of an openness to whatever influences cross their path. With an emphasis on jazzy rhythm, synth and psychedelia, their experimental groovy jams are destined to cloud your mindspace. Sharing the stage with Palabra Saturday night are Elfin Elephant and the SuS Quartet.  

Watch Palabra's trippy music video for the first single, "UpStepTrep," off the new album, then make plans to attend their album release Saturday. Cut ties with distractions and don't let anyone else waste your time.
 
 - Colette Pomerleau

  


Artist of the Month: Mufassa

It's time we set aside our previous notions that Mufassa is the King of the Jungle, or that unfortunate condition of the male genitalia that you've read about on Urban Dictionary (here).

Rather, Mufassa is one of Portland's most promising new bands who play a powerful blend of soulful, bluesy garage rock, reminiscent to the genious of King Kahn. And, as voted by the people, Mufassa is The Deli Portland's current Artist of the Month! The group is currently working on a new album, of which they gave listeners a taste last month with their single Johnny. The track is an epic dancy rocker, showcasing classic rock'n roll guitar riffage, and gentle soulful vocals like that of a higher pitch Elvis. Take a listen for yourself and keep an eye out for their next album. - Travis Leipzig 

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Afternoon Metal House Show: Thou and Contempt 4.17.14

If you can't appreciate the aggression, emotion and straight up virtuosity that produces up some of the best black metal/doom/hardcore music, then I question your roots in rock 'n roll and music in general. This Thursday afternoon shake off your hipster timidness, release the inner punk rocker you once were and show some gusto at the Megaton Haus show freaturing Batton Rouge doom band Thou, midwest grindcore Cloud Rat, Oakland's Reivers and Portland's very own Contempt. While you're there, pick up Contempt's January release Skinwalker on cassette. The show starts at 1pm at 10128 NE Pacific st. Portland. - Travis Leipzig

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Foxy Lemon // Mufassa // 4.12.14

The five guys of Foxy Lemon  have been working hard on production, tightening and experimenting with sounds which largely encompass dripping bass, strong drums, and and classic rock guitar elements of rock and blues. They have oft been compared to doing some fresher, glammy Led Zeppelin or Jack White. Keishi Ihara's voice is emerging, and the band's work on their  XOXO EP- like that dirty guitar stretch on "Muscat" (oh, sweet wine),  is kinda hot. The fact that they are returning to The World Famous Kenton Club with Mufassa tomorrow night instantly garners my approval. Patrimony open the night at 8:30 followed by The Ex-Girlfriends Club. - Brandy Crowe


Little Dragon and UMO 4.10.14 - Live Photos

Check out the live photos from the Little Dragon and UMO show at Roseland Theater April 10th, 2014. All photos by Craig Williams. 

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Havania Whaal Tour Fundraiser with Mascaras 4.12.14

So what is a Havania Whaal? Havania Wall? Whale? Wail?

Drummer Noelle Magia says she and her band/housemates Kelly A.D. and Paul Billy were just having fun. "Just words we made up" she says, "we like seeing how people say it/spell it. " Whatever it is, their EP Chateau de Chienne is a full bodied vintage of  brood-gaze. There is a touch of pop, a little spice, and a nice long finish in lo-fi. Some tracks such as "Foine"indulge in sing-song "get your motor running" anthems, but mostly the band is moving in a heavier direction. "Real Surreal", "Moths", and "Codeine Dreams" are examples; building on heavy bass and dead-pan choruses with a swirl of feedback threatening in the background, then lashing into alternating rhythms and bang-out basement rock. 
 
Havania Whaal plays Habesha April 12th to raise funds for their East coast tour which starts later this month at NYC's The Cake Shop. Also on the bill Saturday at Habesha are Máscaras, Love And Caring, and Muzzy. Go fill your ears with guitar fuzz and give them some money. - Brandy Crowe

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