New Music Tuesday 5/7 Featuring Joshua Radin, Beware of Darkness, Natalie Maines

Quite a variety of new music released today. Here’s what will be going into my shopping cart.

Joshua Radin – Wax Wings

His first album released independently of a label. I’ve only heard one song, but it sounds like the Joshua Radin we’ve all come to know and love. Expect your new favorite love song to be found here…


Beware of DarknessOrthodox

I have been waiting for this one…you wanna rock?


Natalie Maines – Mother

I’m a fan of The Dixie Chicks so I’m looking forward to hearing this album. It gets bumped to the top of the list because she covers one of my favorite songs, “Free Life” by Dan Wilson.



Other releases I hope to check out:

  • Lady Antebellum – Golden
  • Rod Stewart – Time
  • Patty Griffin – American Kid
  • Music of Nashville Season 1, Vol.2
  • She & Him – Volume 3
  • Fitz & The Tantrums – More Than Just A Dream
  • Savages – Silence Yourself
  • Little Boots – Nocturnes
  • HIM- Tears on Tape
  • Goo Goo Dolls – Magnetic
  • Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires Of The City
  • Noah And The Whale – Heart of Nowhere

~ Kristen

Kristen’s ’11 Mix – Track 9 – Ben Rector

9. “When A Heart Breaks” – Ben Rector 

LMN spent some time in Nashville this year exploring a bit of the local music scene. I realized that I’ve been listening to quite a few Nashville-based artists. Butterfly Boucher, Matthew Perryman Jones, Gabe Dixon (and all the Ten of Tenn-ers), Neal Carpenter, Bonnie Bishop, Matt Wertz, etc. It was hard to select just one for this mix, but the one who had the greatest impact on me this year was probably Ben Rector.  I first heard of Ben a couple of years ago but this year was the first opportunity I had to see him, first opening for Matt Wertz at The Troubadour and later at The Hotel Cafe as part of my epic 4 venue/7band evening.  Ben Rector had a new album come out this year called Something Like This, which I quite enjoy, but I’m still hung up on Into The Morning which features “When a Heart Breaks”

~ Kristen

New Music Tuesday 9/20 Featuring Needtobreathe, Thrice, Will Dailey & The Rivals, Katie Herzig, etc.

I can’t believe it’s Tuesday already. I’m still happily feeding off of last week’s releases (especially that Matthew Perryman Jones) and now a whole new course of music is being dangled in front of me. Of course I will partake as I’m a bit of a glutton, but the richness is a bit overwhelming. If you’re hungry for some new tunes, many great options this week. Here are some of my top picks:


NeedtobreatheThe Reckoning 

Needtobreathe is one of the bands I am most excited about at the moment. Their show at The Hotel Cafe will certainly go down as one of the best of the year. I pre-ordered this CD that night and was so happy at midnight last night when I could start listening! Love this band. Love this album. Love love love their live show. If you have the opportunity to get to one of the “secret shows” the band has been doing across the country, DO IT!

In the meantime, you can stream the new record here




Or just go ahead and buy it on amazon or itunes.



Hard rockers Thrice, always manage to surprise me with each new CD release. I have really enjoyed following this band on their musical journey over the last 10 years or so and I look forward to discovering where recent years have taken them. I feel in love with the more bluesy tones of their last album, Beggars, but I’d be foolish to expect more of the same from a band who seems to change it up with every album. I’m not exactly sure what to expect from Major/Minor, but I am confident that it will be a great addition to the band’s varied catalog of music.

Stream it here. Buy it here or here.




Will Dailey & The RivalsWill Dailey & The Rivals

Boston singer-songwriter, Will Dailey, caught my attention the first time I heard his song, “How Can I Make You Happy”. It was love at first listen. I have followed his career ever since and I was thrilled to discover he had a new album, Will Dailey and The Rivals, coming out today. You can download one of the new songs from his website and if you live in the Boston area, be sure to catch him tonight at Newbury Comics or the 24th at The House of Blues Foundation Room.

Amazon has the album here.



Katie HerzigThe Waking Sleep  

Another week, another Ten out of Tenn artist release! Katie Herzig is one of the first artists from this Nashville collective that I started listening to (she made my SXSW ’08 mix). Especially considering how much I’m loving the recent releases from Gabe Dixon and Matthew Perryman Jones, getting this one was really a no-brainer. Plus, I’m really looking forward to her show at The Hotel Cafe in October with Butterfly Boucher and I need to be prepared!

Download the new album on Amazon or Itunes.



Other releases I’m looking forward to giving a listen:

Happy Music Day!
~ Kristen

To Do Today: Dead Sara, Ten out of Tenn, High Voltage Magazine, The Silent Comedy, etc.

I love to do lists! Here are a few items I would highly recommend adding to your list of things to do today:


WATCH Dead Sara’s new video for “Weatherman”: Dead Sara is my newest favorite band. Get to know them as they have the talent to take over the world.


DOWNLOAD Ten out of Tenn’s new CD, Volume 4, at This is a fantastic collection of songs from an amazing collection of Nashville-based artists. You can download it for FREE or leave a tip of your choosing. I’ve had this CD for a couple weeks now and I LOVE it!



PLEDGE to High Voltage Magazine’s campaign to raise funds to release new print issues! $10 gets you an awesome music compilation full of  b-sides and rarities from the likes of Hurricane Bells (featuring Justin of Blue October), Shawn Christensen (Stellastarr) and Kevin McAdams (Elephante), Robbers On High Street and more to be announced. You can also pledge to receive a signed and framed poster from Neon Trees, tickets to a show of your choice in select cities, and more!



WATCH The Silent Comedy’s live performance at SofarSounds in Los Angeles. They play stripped down versions of “The Prince” and “Footnotes”



DOWNLOAD this week’s Daytrotter Sessions featuring the likes of Kina Grannis, William Elliot Whitmore, and The Dandy Warhols.


this just in! DOWNLOAD a live version of Scars on 45‘s song, “Heart on Fire” that will be featured on the next Grey’s Anatomy Soundtrack.


~ Kristen

1 night. 4 venues. 7 bands: A Tale of a Music Enthusiast

On any given night in Los Angeles there will be a great band playing somewhere. I will go, enjoy the music, chat with friends and call it an evening. Sometimes, the gods of music seem to get angry with me and book too many amazing musical events on the same evening, thus forcing me to make somewhat agonizing decisions that, more often than I care to admit, leave me so paralyzed I don’t venture out at all. Monday night I choose to defy those gods as I successfully completed the near impossible feat: Hit up 4 venues in one evening. Here is my story.

It all started with one of my favorite hometown bands, Scarlet Grey. Even since I helped out on their music video for “The Sky & I,” seeing this band has been a bit like a family reunion. The boys of Scarlet Grey are taking off for London for a while and booked their last LA show for Monday August 22nd at The Troubadour.  In my calendar it went with indelible black ink.

Soon after, I was incredibly pleased to see that one of my favorite Nashville-based artists, Ben Rector, had booked a gig at my favorite LA venue, The Hotel Cafe. Ben doesn’t come to LA that often, so this was not something I wanted to miss. I went to ink it in the calendar and was dismayed when I saw the date already filled. Fortunately Ben played at 8pm and Scarlet Grey at 9:45 so I could catch both.. Excellent! A full and exciting evening planned with two great acts.

Things started to get a wee bit complicated when I met Bay, a musician in the band Some Hear Explosions, outside The Viper Room after The Veronicas show.  Bay handed me a CD sampler and spoke of this magical Some Hear Explosions show taking place at The Viper Room. He painted such an enticing picture, I was excited…until I asked him when said show was to occur. Monday August 22nd. Why Monday is often the most convoluted day of the week show-wise is beyond me. It’s MONDAY! Anyway, after listening to said sampler and cursing the goodness of it, I penciled in the 11:15 SHE set thinking that The Viper usually runs late anyway, so it was entirely possible to make it after The Troubadour…the venues are fairly close together.

Finally, during SSMF, a friend of mine pointed out two additional bands also playing on Monday. Chappo, a Brooklyn-based band I had heard good things about, was playing a set at The Satellite and The Constellations were going to be at The Bootleg. I really wanted to see Chappo because I juuuust missed them at SSMF, but their Satellite set fell right in the middle of my already inked in events, so I cast that thought aside. The Constellations, however, were playing at midnight. The Constellations are a band from Atlanta, Georgia. They make infrequent appearances in Los Angeles and I had been craving a live set since their CD came out last year.  I didn’t care about the excess driving, the time crunch, or the fact that I would be too tired to function the next day. I needed to be at that show! I penciled it in right after Some Hear Explosions.

Come Monday night, every little thing just seemed to be working out. Traffic was shockingly light and I arrived at The Hotel Cafe early. I immediately found street parking (something that doesn’t often happen for me) and I went into the venue to find the 7pm act, Korey Dane, still playing. I only caught 2.5 tunes, but I was impressed. Just as I was thinking, “I really need to see this guy again,” someone hands me a flier for BuskerFest, an event taking place this Saturday in Long  Beach at which Korey Dane is playing along with Everest , Jay Buchanan, and more.

Ben Rector took the stage shortly after 8pm and for the next 30min or so I was lost in his world. He played many of my favorites (“When a Heart Breaks,” “The Beat,” even “Hank”!) going back and forth from the guitar to the piano. It was only Ben’s second time playing in Los Angeles, but fans were out in full force, singing along, clapping unprovoked(!), and listening attentively to Ben’s stories.  There was Frisbee throwing, “Loving You Is Easy” got an improvised verse about grilled cheese, and throughout the whole set I could not stop smiling. My only complaint was that he didn’t play “Moving Backwards,” the song that first introduced me to Ben a couple of years ago. I still haven’t heard it performed live…and this bothers me greatly.

As soon as Ben Rector’s set was over, I left The Hotel Cafe to head to show number 2: Scarlet Grey at The Troubadour. On the way back to my car I passed by The Piano Bar. There was good tune-age coming from within, so I ducked in for a song. Turns out it was Waylon Payne, the guy who played Jerry Lee Lewis in the movie Walk the Line. It would have probably been a great night of music just hanging out at The Piano Bar (I spotted piano extraordinaire Brother Sal in the corner), but I couldn’t stay.

Heading to The Troubadour I was again amazed to find traffic to be light and free parking to be a piece of cake. I walked into the venue in time to hear my favorite Dead Country song, “Euro Thrash” and find where all my friends were hiding before the quickest set change ever occurred and suddenly Scarlet Grey were on the stage rocking out to “No Boys in the Ballroom” and “Fancy Blood.” The band played quite a few new songs that gave me the impression that they are aiming to up the rock factor, adding longer musical interludes and shifting the audience dance from jumping up and down to head banging. The set was over way too quickly but the boys came back out to do an encore which included “The Sky & I” so I was quite pleased.

I was even more pleased to realize I had some time after the set to hang out with The Grey Family for a few minutes before taking off to show number 3. The Viper was easy to get to and for the third time that evening, I made it in time to catch a few songs from the previous band (in this case, The Mulhollands).  I was excited to see the cat walk had been brought out and I spent the time in between sets saying hello to some familiar faces in the room and recollecting my last Viper/cat walk experience (Semi Precious Weapons).

Some Hear Explosions started around 11:30. Bay wasn’t kidding when he said a lot of effort was going in to that night’s performance. Lights, video, sound effects in addition to the runway upped the level of intensity for the already energetic band. Some Hear Explosions played a couple songs I knew from the sampler with such panache, it was impossible not to get into it. It was difficult to disengage 20 minutes into the set, but the call of The Constellations was strong.

I arrived at The Bootleg just as Robert Francis was ending (thankfully things were running late). I found my peeps and we recounted stories of our evening’s adventures thus far. Between the three of us, we had gone to 6 different shows before convening at The Bootleg. I was starting to fade but then the set began and before I knew it, the music had taken over and I was a dancing machine! The Constellations proved to be as good if not better than I had anticipated. I love bands that really fill the stage (there are six of them…and only 1 guitarist) and lead singer, Elijah Jones, has a unique voice that sits somewhere between groovy rock and growling spoken word and can hit the most perfect maniacal laugh with impressive ease.  New Band Love!!

The Constellations played all the songs I wanted to hear (“Felicia,” “Setback,” “Step Right Up”) and the set had put me in such a good mood, I found myself lingering at the venue for some time after the music had ended. I just wanted to retain as much of that magical energy for as long as possible. I don’t think I want to tell you want time I finally got home that evening/morning. At the end of it all, I had seen two of my favorite acts, discovered a great new artist, added a new band to my local must see list, and fallen in love.  For a music enthusiast such as myself, this was not a bad way to spend an evening. 7 Bands. 4 Venues. 1 night. Not bad…not bad at all!



~ Kristen



New Music Tuesday 8.16.11: The Milk Carton Kids, Bird by Bird, The War on Drugs, Ten Out of Tenn, and more!

Another Tuesday, another barrage of new music. There are a few I’m looking forward to getting my hands on this week so I thought I’d share.


The Milk Carton Kids– Prolouge  

This is one of the BEST CDs currently in my player. I’ve said it before, but Joey Ryan and Kenneth Pattengale (AKA The Milk Carton Kids) are the second coming of Simon & Garfunkel…if Simon & Garfunkel could make you both laugh to the point of crying. There is no excuse for anyone not to get this CD as it is being offered for free on The Milk Carton Kids website. Pay close attention to the tour dates because this show is one you don’t want to miss.

“Michigan” is the first song off the album. It was days before I could move on to track to because I just had this one on repeat.



Bird by BirdWhile You Sleep

Bay area rockers, Bird by Bird, were in town on Saturday playing On the Rox. I’ve been looking forward to seeing this duo of Jonathan Devoto and Ross Traver, but of course Saturday was the day of a million shows and I couldn’t make it. Guess I’ll have to go the download route ( on this one as the only shows the band have scheduled are up in Nor Cal. Even though I’ll have to wait a bit longer to see them live, at least now I have something new for the ears.

You can listen to a stream of the album on AOL’s Music Page:




The War on DrugsSlave Ambient  

My Philadelphia brethren, The War on Drugs, have a new album. I’ve only heard bits of it, but some of my favorite musicians are associated with this band, so you’d better bet I’m going to go out and get it! Their 2008 album, Wagonwheel Blues, boasted tunes like “Taking The Farm” and “Arms Like Boulders” which still find their way onto my playlists. The War on Drugs is coming to The Satellite October 22nd.

Listen here to The War on Drugs live on NPR!

And an interview with Filter Magazine

Buy Slave Ambient here




Ten Out of TennVolume 4 

Ten Out of Tenn is a collective of artists based in Nashville, TN. Individually they are all amazing singer-songwriters, Butterfly Boucher, Andrew Belle, Trent Dabbs, Katie Herzig, etc. Together, the ten (or so) artists travel around the country together playing their music and combining their skills to form a sort of super group. Their albums, including today’s release, Volume 4, come across as compilation CDs, giving the listener a taste of each individual voice. I love this concept! Ten Out of Tenn is currently out on tour. I wouldn’t miss it…



Itunes link

Because I just saw him last Friday, here is Ten Out of Tenn featuring Andrew Belle’s “The Ladder”



Other CDs coming out today:

  • Blue October has a new one out today called Any Man in America. I am a huge fan of this band’s debut album and am looking forward to see what they sound like these days. Their album today is only $3.99 on…this does not sound like a bad deal to me…
  • Fool’s Gold is a band based in LA I keep meaning to check out. Maybe having their new album, Leave No Trace, will encourage me to do so. They are playing at The Amoeba in Hollywood tomorrow, August 17th, at 7pm
  • The Parson Red Heads is another LA based band. I saw them open for Truth & Salvage Co. and I recall enjoying their performance. I’m hoping their CD, Yearling,  is equally enjoyable!


Happy New Music Day!


~ Kristen

Local Music Nation Goes to Nashville

After Bonnaroo, we were covered with dirt and grime. Unshowered and not having slept, the last thing we wanted to do was immediately get on an airplane for 4 hours. Instead we decided to hit up the nearest Steak N Shake, find a hotel with a pool, and spend a little time in Nashville…it is, after all, the music city. We explored the Country Music Museum learning about the history and nuances of country music as well as a lot more about Hank Williams and his family than I really cared to know. There were some fun artifacts including horse lover Webb Pierce’s tricked out car, Elvis’ golden piano, and most excitedly (for me), Carl Perkins’ actual blue suede shoes! In association with the museum, we also toured RCA Studio B where hits from the likes of Elvis, Dolly Parton, and The Everly Brothers were recorded. I picked up a t-shirt with the museum’s slogan, “Honor Thy Music”

My favorite part of our Nashville adventures, was the evening we spent at local bar, 3rd & Lindsley. I wanted to get a taste for the local scene (as well as some fried pickles) and I was overly pleased when I noticed that 3rd & Lindsley was having an evening jam-packed with Nashville-based artists! The evening began with a group from Winston-Salem, NC (a town I incidentally spent a summer living in back in ‘05). Katelyn Marks and her two guitarists got the evening off to a great start, even playing a cover of Nashville natives, The Civil Wars’ hit “Barton Hollow”.

The second act was a songwriters in the round featuring three Nashville-based musicians; Jaron Boyer, Jared Crump, and Neal Carpenter. I enjoyed each of these artists for different reasons. Jaron Boyer was the country boy with fun, smartly-crafted tunes that would flow seamlessly on the local radio. Jared Crump was the sensitive singer-songwriter with the heartfelt love songs that can make you feel all mushy inside. But it was something about the way Neal Carpenter sang his tunes that made me stop and put down my fried pickles every time he picked up his guitar. I was dismayed to find only one tune available on itunes. Give a listen to “Don’t Give Up”…this guy is definitely going on my watch list. Can’t wait ‘til he comes to LA!


The ‘Round was fantastic, but the evening was really just beginning. The final portion of the night was reserved for The Podunk Sessions, a family of Nashville-based musicians who like to get together and play music with each other. Each artist would get on stage and play a mini-set of 3-5 tunes…perfect for sampling. The evening began with Dave Pahanish, a guy whose name you might not know, but whose songs have been sung by the likes of Toby Keith, Keith Urban, and Tim McGraw. My favorite part of Dave’s set was when his wife, Kristin Lee joined him for a tune or two adding her soulful voice to his country twang.

The night continued with an impressive line-up. From the too cute for words Rachel Loy and the up-and-coming country star Eric Paslay to Brain Wright’s Nashville doppelganger Hugh Mitchell and self-proclaimed “downer” of the group, Brad Tursi, there was seemingly no end to the talent that took the stage. My favorite of the evening was probably the still nervous when she sings but will knock your socks off with her stunning vocals Bonnie Bishop. There were also a string of guests whose names I just didn’t get who were equally impressive and most likely great artists in their own right.

Individually, all the artists were such a treat to listen to, but the true magic of the evening lied in their collaborations. As the evening continued, musicians seemed to be coming out of the woodwork. I began to wonder if there was anyone in the place who wouldn’t at one point get on stage to sing, pick up a guitar, or at the very least lend some enthusiastic background clapping. The event left me with the most favorable impression of the local scene as a talented and collaborative community of singers and songwriters.

We left the party early (a bit after midnight) because we had one more aspect of Nashville to explore: the late night dining experience. We ended up at Cafe Coco which had a comfortable indie vibe, plenty of interesting artifacts on the walls, and an impressive array of food options. We each tried a couple of different things and it was all quite scrumptious. I was especially pleased with the turtle cheesecake…

All in all, I’d say LMN’s first trip to Nashville was a smashing success…plenty of music to investigate and new artists to keep tabs on. We got to visit some historic sites and got a tiny glimpse of the local scene. I found myself wishing I could live in Nashville for awhile. As much as we saw, there are so many more music venues to explore and artists to discover! Maybe someday…


Want to learn more about all these great artists coming out of Nashville? Here are some links to the music and pages of the musicians we came across on our trip:

Neal Carpenter
Jared Crump
Jaron Boyer
Katelyn Marks
Dave Pahanish
Kristin Lee
Rachel Loy
Eric Paslay
Hugh Mitchell
Brad Tursi
Bonnie Bishop

and if you’re ever in Nashville:

3rd & Lindsley
The Country Music Museum
Cafe Coco
Jack’s BBQ