Big Tree is an indie pop quintet, conjuring up "the kind of twee-rock that follows in the footsteps of The New Seekers and The Free Design with their sweetly enchanting sound which rings both lushly produced and delightfully rag-tag DIY at the same time. A much smaller, earthier Polyphonic Spree, if you will." Born in the Big Apple, the five-piece recently relocated to sunny California, where they've quickly become a thriving element of the Bay Area music scene. The band's past three years have seen 4 cross-country tours, two full length albums, two Daytrotter Sessions, the NYC Deli Magazine Band of the Month title, and over 250 incredible shows. This environmentally-minded group gets from show to show in a tour van that runs on recycled vegetable oil, bought with the help and support of their fans.
Big Tree is still growing and expanding with the release of their second full length album This New Year. This New Year finds the band expanding on a sound that is "a difficult one to classify, but an easy one to enjoy" (Fensepost). It is infectious pop music splashed with colorful harmonies, driven by pulsing rhythms, unique time signatures, group vocals, and poetic quirky imagery. Kaila McIntyre-Bader, Anna Ghezzi, Luke Bace, Dan Pirello, and Matt Schory have been called "fiercely talented" (Prarie Dog) and "remarkably captivating" (Magnet Magazine). Growing roots on the West Coast, Big Tree is ready to defy the limits of pop music and show the world a new genre that can be enjoyed by hipsters, hippies, and mainstream masses alike.
Bridge Nine Records
When it comes to Candy Hearts' open-book policy, that book is essentially a diary. Since conceiving the band while attending college in upstate New York in 2010, frontwoman Mariel Loveland has used the band as an outlet to vent her feelings and frustrations in honest and relatable ways by way of familiar imagery and revealing, recognizable failings of short-term romance, empathetic tragedies channeled through '90s alternative-soaked pop-rock. It's a maneuver fully realized on their sophomore full-length,All The Ways You Let Me Down.
"This album really spans the whole spectrum of a relationship," says Loveland, "from being single and looking for somebody, to finding someone and then breaking up." All The Ways You Let Me Downdetails the trek, pinpointing the highs like building emotional bonds during car rides ("The Dream's Not Dead", "Brooklyn Bridge") as well as the lows of unsureness and/or desperation that comes with any escalating relationship ("Michigan", "Coffee With My Friends", "Playing With Fire"). "Coffee With My Friends" and "Playing With Fire" also highlight the relationship one develops with themselves, a theme that subtly inflects "The One To Get Me Out" and other moments on the album.
While coming off emotionally wounded, occasionally downtrodden and heavily introspective, Candy Hearts - currently filled out by bassist John Clifford and drummer Matthew Ferraro - have always bundled these sentiments with hook-filled, bubbly, poppy inclinations. "It's a cool vibe for me," Loveland says of All The Ways. "It definitely has a more alternative and pop vibe than our last EP [2012's The Best Ways To Disappear]. It feels like Taylor Swift meets the Breeders, and that's something we were always going for. It's a lot less pop-punk; it's just like a straight-up pop-rock record."
New Found Glory guitarist Chad Gilbert, who took on the band a couple years ago after overhearing their music from a bandmate on NFG's tour bus, has helped polish these intentions as producer for All The Ways You Let Me Down (as well as The Best Ways). He's also helped expose the band to broader audiences, handpicking them as the first act on his Bridge Nine imprint, Violently Happy Records, and taking them on a couple tours, including the upcoming UK Pop Punk's Not Dead run in the fall.
"It's always really great when we work with him," Loveland says. "We have a good vibe together. He really understands what we're going for, musically. There are no arguments, and he definitely helps bring out the best parts of songs and shape them to be something that is definitely more catchy."
A cameo from Jordan Pundik on "Something's Missing" also provides a pleasant collaboration between the bands, especially with the NFG frontman acting as an influence on Loveland's musical upbringing. "I was psyched," Loveland says of Pundik's vignette. "There are only a couple singersâ€”the Beatles, Alanis Morissetteâ€”when I was younger where I was like, 'Man, that is something amazing.'"
Although Loveland says she would love for millions of people the world over to hear and buy All The Ways You Let Me Down, she does so with a laugh, aware of the struggle it takes to gain as much fame as Candy Hearts' pop-rock predecessors and peers. However many people hear it, though, she'll ensure that the message is still as clear and honest as possibleâ€”to both fans and themselves. "I've always wanted this band to be completely true to ourselves," Loveland says, "That's just what our band has always been about."
Habibi is the brainchild of Rahill Jamalifard and Lenny Lynch. Together, the two Detroit natives started the all girl, Brooklyn based project in the spring of 2011. Growing up with the harmonious sounds of Motown and the punk attitudes of Quatro and Iggy, their music invokes the same simplicity and fiery spirit. Jamalifard’s Persian ancestry and Lynch’s love of Middle Eastern culture are evident in the bands name (Habibi’s translation is my love in Arabic), their mystical lyrics, and their eastern tinged melodies. In the short span of time since their formation Habibi has captured the interest of audiences and labels abroad, eager to hear more of their simple and catchy songs. The four piece featuring Erin Campbell, on bass and Karen Isabel on drums look forward to their upcoming single and their first full length album.
Hailing from Echo Park, CA, Froth combines a forward-thinking garage rock sound with elements of shoegaze and psych-pop washed in the dreamy textures of omnichord and jangly 12-string guitar. Getting their start in 2012, Froth has quickly risen through the ranks of the Los Angeles DIY music scene, playing with the likes of The Growlers, Cosmonauts, La Luz, Mr. Elevator & the Brain Hotel, Mystic Braves and many more. Along with playing popular local events like The Growlers' annual Beach Goth Party and Burgerama, Froth has also gained exposure to an international audience after being hand-picked by Hedi Slimane to score the Saint Laurent AW14 menswear collection runway show. After releasing their debut album, Patterns, via Burger Records and Lolipop Records in the fall of 2013, Froth continues to attract new fans with their strong hooks and high-energy live show, and remains dedicated to exploring the sonic possibilities of their expansive psychedelic sound.
Summer Twins are sisters Chelsea (guitar, vocals) and Justine Brown (drums, vocals). They write dreamy rock ‘n roll songs with a touch of California sun. Born and raised in Riverside, Ca, they formed Summer Twins in 2008, with a focus on singing pop harmonies atop garage rock inspired by the ’50s and ’60s. Summer Twins play live with Michael Rey Villavicencio on bass and are signed to Burger Records and IRMA Records (Japan).
Hailing from the sleepy suburban sprawl of Orange County, California, Cosmonauts forge malcontent drone-pop melodies, delivered with a clangy laser-fuzz backbone. Formed in Summer 2009 by Alexander Ahmadi & Derek Cowart, Cosmonauts offer a glimpse of drug-addled Southern Californian rock n roll in the 21st century. Inspired in equal parts by polo-shirts and MDMA, this four-piece garage-trance outfit has garnered a reputation of amps dialed to ten and lullaby meltdowns with both audiences and contemporaries. Supporting established acts at home & abroad such as The Growlers, The Black Angels, Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, The Beach Fossils & more.
Defined by critics as "Beach Boys on downers" & "how Lou Reed wound up wearing that dog collar", these pop-loving, feedback-chasing drop-outs have been releasing records and touring North America and Europe at breakneck speed. Releasing material with labels like Burger Records, Austin's Reverberation Appreciation Society & more. Not to mention a handful of 7" singles released by European & Californian labels. Last year they followed up heir rattling, echo-drenched 2011 debut self-titled LP(Permanent Records) with 2012's If You Wanna Die Then I Wanna Die, released by local-Fullertonian label Burger Records. Both LPs recorded in a rennovated Anaheim warehouse, in viewing distance of Disneyland's nightly fireworks.
Peach Kelli Pop
Peach Kelli Pop originated when Allie Hanlon, originally a drummer, decided to try writing and recording songs in Ottawa, Canada in 2009. Hanlon started out writing not for an audience but for herself. The intimate quality of her bedroom recordings have been maintained to this day. On first listen one will hear high-pitched harmonies and thick layers of trebly guitars but just below the surface lays an evocative darker side to the music that often goes unnoticed.
Peach Kelli Pop is known for her catchy and tongue-in-cheek songs inspired by video games, Chinese food and conspiracy theorists, illustrating not only her playfulness but also her wit and her angst. Hanlon also grapples with more serious topics like the pressures and challenges women face and the weight of love. Some songs feature the sounds and words of frustrated heartache and recognizable sorrows. Those that spend enough time with Hanlon’s music will grasp its depth –both musically and emotionally.
Peach Kelli Pop plays with the type of urgency and immediacy that appeals to an audience with short attention spans. Hanlon fronts Peach Kelli Pop’s energetic live shows on guitar and vocals and is backed by an assembly of female musicians. The live band consists of an additional guitarist, a bassist, a keyboardist and percussionist and a drummer. Hanlon has been playing with all female musicians in recent years because she recalls being inspired by seeing other women play shows as a teen. In the male-dominated music world, it affirmed her own potential for writing and playing music.
Peach Kelli Pop has their third full length record being released this April on Fullerton, CA label Burger Records. They are doing month long tour of the United States and Canada and a tour in Japan in support of the new album.
Castle Peak Music
Gal Pals is a drum and guitar duo, originally from Austin, now based in Los Angeles. We write pop songs.
Castle Peak Music
Alexi Glickman began performing and releasing music as Sandy's in 2012 after fronting the Botticellis and touring with Little Wings. In Summer of 2014 Thomas Campbell put out Sandy's debut record, Fourth Dementia, via Um Yeah Arts.
On his new EP, Prom, he wraps five melodic gems with layers of vintage tape echo and open tuned Stratocaster shimmer for a dreamy late summer slow dance. Alexi recalls, “my first memories of music were in these big echoey rooms watching my Dad and his dance company rehearse. I wanted to make an EP that had a presence like that.” Prom features album art by Nat Russell that depicts a lone guitarist playing for a seemingly vast, empty landscape— save for the multitude of glowing stars in the cosmos. It’s a lonely image but also a transcendent one in the same spirit as the opening lines of Chris Bell’s I Am The Cosmos, “Every Night I tell myself I am the cosmos / I am the wind / But that don’t get you back again.”
Lyrically, Prom deals with a similar kind of social desolation— when friends drift away after school or turn their backs on their old friends as they pair off to get married. “Sometimes there’s an openness of spirit that begins to fade in people as they grow older— songs like "Consolidated Identity" are a kind of last dance with that person before they become someone else.” Recorded mostly live to a 1960s Scully 4-track in a house in the Sierra Foothills of Northern California, Prom centers around Alexi’s guitar— an on old Fender, open tuned, echoplexed—reverberating in the old wood panels of the forest dwelling turned recording studio.
Sandy’s band, made of Burton Li (the Botticellis), Nick Aives, (The Range of Light Wilderness, Vetiver), Dave Muller, and Jeremy Black (Apollo Sunshine), blend into one instrument— winding through rich harmonic passages like they were riding a wave.
“I decided to keep two tunes on the EP instrumentals to invite folks to listen to them in a different way. Vocals can sometimes steal the show—when there’s an intricate composition underneath you wonder if anyone notices. I have vocal versions that I’d like to put out someday but I thought opening with an instrumental on each side of the EP was a fun way to welcome folks into this little world.”
Castle Peak Music
My Double, My Brother
My Double, My Brother is an alternative indie band based out of Long Beach, California. After meeting in college and playing together in their school's music conservatory, the band started rehearsing at an old church in Whittier. They soon moved into a house in Fullerton to record their debut album What We Found Beneath the Ground and self-released the record in March 2011. After a warm reception, many gigs—including an opening slot for mewithoutYou—and a successful Kickstarter campaign, My Double, My Brother released Infinite Line EP and started recording their follow-up LP with producer Jon O’Brien in Orange County at the Music Box.
The band released their sophomore LP Shelves in February 2015.