Friday, July 27, 2012

'Hollow Earth' by Black Wine

By Jason Duarte
Release date: July 3, 2012
LP: Don Giovanni Records
Rating: 5/5

Black Wine, hailing from the Matawan, NJ area, released its third full-length, Hollow Earth, earlier month via Don Giovanni Records.
On Hollow Earth, the band continues to take steps outside its comfort zone, thus maturing its sound. The band's haunting and sometimes eerie tones linger in songs like "Blurry" and "Naysayer." Singer/guitarist Jeff Schroeck (The Ergs!/The Hamiltons) and Miranda Taylor (Full of Fancy/Hunchback/Noun) offer four songs each, while Jay Nixon (Hunchback/Psyched To Die) offers two.
Black Wine instills an inquisitive mentality on its listeners. The concept of Hollow Earth deals much with perception and how we relate to each other and everything around us.
"The architect has plans/His bricks and expression/Tricks are paint to the magician/I am always searchin' for an alteration or a clever iteration," Schroeck sings on "Heavy Veil."
I highly recommend Hollow Earth not just because the lyrics and music top everything they've ever done as a band, but the minds behind it weave some of the best sonic tapestries I've ever heard. Listen hard enough and you might look inside yourself and around you in a different way.
Hollow Earth, as well as the rest of Black Wine's catalog, is available here.
Stream Hollow Earth below:

Black Wine playing "Burlap" at Township in Chicago on 7/1/12:

Black Wine playing "Flatland" at the Empty Bottle in Chicago, on 6/30/12:

Black Wine's music video for "Burlap:"

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

'Missing Link' 7'' by Sore Subjects

By Kevin Toomey
Release date: April 14, 2012
7'': Surfin' Ki Records
Rating: 4/5

Sore Subjects is back with four new songs on its second 7'', Missing Link, released earlier this year. It’s obvious on Missing Link and from the band's recent live shows, that the Sore Subjects is really finding their own sound and style. The band is playing tighter than ever and somehow managed to pull off an even more lo-fi sound than last year's self-titled 7''. A-side tracks, “Obscene Calls” and “Wearing You Down,” are both reminiscent of the Marked Men and the Busy Signals, and have made their way onto my summer party playlists. The last two songs continue in the same vein, although they lose some of the momentum from the first side. But, this 7'' still good enough to earn 4/5 stars. Purchase the Missing Link 7'' on Sore Subjects' Bandcamp page, and stream it here: