Listen to Syna So Pro's Loop Talk Vol. 2: Two Riffs and Some Heartbreak

Categories: Homespun

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Corey Woodruff
Syna So Pro
Syrhea Conaway contains multitudes. Her one-woman shows as Syna So Pro make that plain, as she constructs the foundation, framework and artful edifice of a pop song in real time with the help of traditional rock & roll instruments, a few loop pedals and impeccable harmony. Her studio albums can't rely on such showmanship, so they not only give proof of her instrumental prowess -- she handles everything but the drums, which come care of Corey Woodruff -- but also her stylistic shifts between T. Rex-ian pomp and ethereal dream-pop.

See also: Get in the Loop with Experimental Pop Artist Syna So Pro, a One-Woman Show

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We Party Portugal's Self-Titled EP: Listen Now

Categories: Homespun

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We Party Portugal's self-titled EP: the Deluxe edition.
Local rock & roll quartet We Party Portugal isn't exactly elusive in nodding to its key influences. The band's ReverbNation page only has one band listed in the "Sounds Like" section: Pavement. Not that you'd need to to be told of the legendary band's imprint -- the laconic and meandering (but always tuneful) guitar lines and detached vocals singing obtuse lyrics are all pretty good tells (even band member Andy Malkus' surname is one letter away from "Malkmus").

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Arthur & the Librarian's New Album Draws Inspiration From The Odyssey

Categories: Homespun

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Jason Stoff
Arthur & the Librarian

You can't act too surprised when a band called Arthur & the Librarian turns out to be a bit bookish, and you can't fault a bookish band for cribbing from the Western canon's all-time greatest epic for a literary-inspired album. The local quintet took inspiration from Homer's The Odyssey for its Island of the Lotus Eaters LP, but the title is about as direct as the band gets in referencing Odysseus' long voyage home.

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The CharFlies to Release Linoleum Angel This Friday at Off Broadway

Categories: Homespun

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CB Adams
The CharFlies
It took about fifteen years and a few hard knocks to get Richard Newman back to writing and performing original music.

Newman played in local acts Junkbox and the Neverminds a few musical generations ago, but since then other endeavors -- such as writing poetry and editing the literary magazine River Styx -- took over his interests. But a self-described midlife crisis and his second divorce managed to reawaken his inner songwriter, and with his group the CharFlies, Newman has paired his evocative and thoughtfully rendered songs with hand-hewn, soulful folk music.

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The Provels' Self-Titled New Album Goes Down Easy

Categories: Homespun

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via the Provels' official website
The Provels
In terms of local culinary customs, there is no more clearly demarcated line in the sand than Provel. You can tart up a toasted ravioli or pour a Busch Bavarian into a snifter, but there ain't no dressing up this ballast of St. Louis-Italian cuisine. For locals, the processed cheese-food is quite literally part of their bloodstream; non-natives look at the gooey, too-malleable substance as St. Louis' great unpardonable sin.

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Exclusive: Stream Bo & the Locomotive's New Album, It's All Down Here From Here, Now

Categories: Homespun

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Bryan Sutter
Bo & the Locomotive
Tonight is the record release show for Bo & the Locomotive's new album, It's All Down Here From Here. The band will be joined by Middle Class Fashion and the Carondelets at Off Broadway ($10 to $13 / 9 p.m.).

Can't wait until then? Well, you're in luck: We have an exclusive stream of the album for you right now.

See also: St. Louis' Bo & the Locomotive Is Poised for the National Stage

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Bo & the Locomotive to Release It's All Down Here From Here This Friday at Off Broadway

Categories: Homespun

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Courtesy of the band.
Bo & the Locomotive will release It's All Down Here From Here this Friday at Off Broadway.
The long lead-up to Bo & the Locomotive's second album is indicative both of the care that went into its writing and production, as well as the promotional push the band has been crafting. The past six months saw the group launch a listening party and fundraiser for the LP, which included a conversation with producer David Beeman, whose Native Sound studio hosted these sessions.

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Traveling Sound Machine's Self-Titled EP: Listen Now

Categories: Homespun

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via Bandcamp
Traveling Sound Machine
A local six-piece that has hopefully endured a modicum of Gloria Estefan-related jokes, Traveling Sound Machine released its first, self-titled EP last fall. These five songs (plus a minute-long interlude of plinking piano and musical saw called "Ave Maria") are attractively moody and creatively arranged. This is a rock band at heart, using conventional structures and sequences to create tension and release.

But creative instrumentation — that, crucially, is organically integrated into these songs — gives the band something extra.

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Walter Whitney's Phantom Worlds: Listen Now

Categories: Homespun

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Via Bandcamp
Walter Whitney, working the Roland.

In the early 1980s, synthesist and programmer Walter Whitney composed music with tech-savvy guitarists Carl Weingarten and David Udell in the group Delay Tactics. Their work, collected on albums released by Weingarten's Multiphase Records label, was inspired by the ambient and fusion works of artists like Brian Eno and Robert Fripp. The group's 1982 debut, Out-Pop Options, even features a track called "Chasing Moroder," if that gives you any hint at its influences.

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Vandalion's Self-Titled EP: Hear It Now

Categories: Homespun

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Vandalion, a young local band previously known as Grafted, released a self-titled EP last month. The band's avowed influences tell the story behind their sound, though you'd hear the stamp of Radiohead's "Paranoid Android" on these songs with little help. Wallace McCanless' lead vocals owe a debt to Incubus' Brandon Boyd, though he avoids the temptation to go full-on ROCK DUDE with his performances. For its part, Vandalion honors that tradition of taking somewhat complex song structures and themes of alienation and technophobia and packaging them in attractive, radio-ready modern rock.


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