Yamin Semali: Yamintro (Hello Again)


Some hip hop from the ATL for you today. We get so many submissions from rappers who just spit straight over an old song, with no attention paid to rhythm or dynamics and little thought given to production, that when I come across an artist like Yamin Semali, who leaves some space for personality and clever rhymes over great production, I almost cry.

Check out the video for “Yamintro (Hello Again)”, utilizing the classic Cars song, from Semali’s new album self-titled album, and keep any eye out for the cool Chevy-logo tailpipe.


“Yamintro (Hello Again)” – Yamin Semali


Yamin Semali’s album is available now via his Bancamp site and features John Robinson (Scienz of Life, DOOM, J. Rawls), Boog Brown (Mello Music Group), Chopp (The Smile Rays, Dillon), Blc Txt (King I Divine), and Gotta Be Karim (Black Spade, Do For Self), with production by Illastrate.


Yamin Semali @ Bandcamp

Yamin Semali @ Twitter

Yamin Semali @ Facebook

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Friday Link Session

  • It’s about that time: Bands, if you can’t – or don’t want to – make it to SXSW this year, start getting your submissions ready for the third annual CXCW (Couch by Couchwest), March 10-16. Find submission details here.
  • If you’ll be in the Cleveland area on June 22 and would like to move from the couch to someone’s porch, the 5th annual Larchmere PorchFest is accepting submissions until May 1.
  • Wonderful CXCW alumnus Daniel Knox is playing a residency at the Hideout in Chicago, IL. For a highly interesting read, check out his pre-residency interview with ChicagoMusic.org.
  • Spacehog – yes, the “In the Meantime” band – are preparing to release their first new album in twelve years, As It Is On Earth. They have a fundraiser project for the album, with part of the proceeds going to the David Lynch Foundation.
  • On February 7, Patti Smith received the Katharine Hepburn Medal from Bryn Mawr College. The medal “recognizes women whose lives, work and contributions embody the intelligence, drive and independence” of the great feminist actress.
  • Roots artist Frank Fairfield is Continue reading

Willy Mason: Don’t Stop Now

Willy Mason - Don't Stop Now


Around the time Now This Sound Is Brave started, back in 2010, I found myself in the habit of inadvertently seeing Willy Mason play live as he seemed to be opening for everyone I wanted to see. While he clearly had talent and skill, it took a while for me to be won over. Mason had started his career at a young age and was growing into his role.

Seeing his name pop up in the old e-mail inbox after three years is like seeing an old, beloved friend again. Willy Mason is trotting out his first new album in six years, Carry On, and in the run-up, he has an EP titled Don’t Stop Now available for free download from NoiseTrade. It’s a beautiful little thing, ranging from the somber to the downright danceable.



Mason is gearing up to tour the UK and Australia, and will be joining the Gentlemen of the Road tour for four stops this summer.


Willy Mason Official … Continue reading

A Good Read, a Good Listen, and a Good Drink: Murder by Death

Murder by Death's Dagan Thogerson


It’s a simple yet sublime pleasure, and just thinking about it can make you feel a little calmer, a little more content. Imagine: You bring out one of the good rocks glasses (or your favorite mug or a special occasion tea cup) and pour a couple fingers of amber liquid (or something dark and strong or just some whole milk). You drop the needle on the jazz platter (or pull up a blues album on your mp3 player or dig out that mixtape from college). Ensconcing yourself in the coziest seat in the house, you crack the spine on a classic (or find your place in that sci-fi paperback or pull up a biography on your e-book reader). And then, you go away for a while. Ah, bliss.

In this series, some of NTSIB’s friends share beloved albums, books and drinks to recommend or inspire.

Murder by Death’s latest album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, is a product of one of the most successful Kickstarter music campaigns to date, and the endearingly silly video Continue reading

The Dirty Nil/Northern Primitive Split 7″

The Dirty Nil/Northern Primitive Split 7"


The Dirty Nil, who appeal to our never-ending love of loud, have a new single out. This time around, they’ve gone in on a split 7″ with their friends Northern Primitive. The single is available digitally and on vinyl.

Check out a video of the bands playing both songs of the split – “Positive Bondar” and “Zombie Eyed” – in, as the band says, “the coldest barn in the history of barns”.


The Dirty Nil @ Bandcamp

The Dirty Nil @ Tumblr

The Dirty Nil @ Twitter

The Dirty Nil @ Facebook

Northern Primitive @ Bandcamp

Northern Primitive @ Tumblr

Northern Primitive @ Twitter

Northern Primitive @ Facebook

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Friday Link Session


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Murder by Death Is Coming to Cleveland

Murder by Death


The best voices in modern music are not those that are technically proficient but those that are dented and torn, so full of character that they could tell a whole story just by humming a few notes. Tom Waits, Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Leonard Cohen… as their careers continued their lives seeped into their voices, expanding, contracting, cracking, causing deep crevices. Adam Turla of Murder by Death is well on his way to becoming a member of this camp. In the early days of MbD, Turla’s voice was like a flower bud, green and simple. Now, a decade on, his voice has a timbre closer to another one of those vocal icons, Johnny Cash.



And like those other singular singers, Turla is not relying merely on his battered vocal chords to carry him forward. He integrates it with A) a great band, and B) great stories. While this is clearly a band with a sense of humor – not only are they named after the 1976 murder spoof starring Peter Falk, Peter Sellers, Maggie Smith, … Continue reading

Feel Bad For You, February 2013

A new FBFY mix is live, and I’d personally like to thank our FBFY commander-in-chief for not choosing a Valentine theme this month.

“…and we’re back! I considered and then threw out a number of ideas for different themes and went with goulash (def: an eclectic and uncoordinated mixture of something). What a mixture we’ve got! We are spanning quite a few genres and yet it works! Thanks to Matt (@truersound) for this month’s artwork.”


Feel Bad For You, February 2013

  • Title: Cleaning Out My Closet (Eminem cover)
    Artist: Angel Haze
    Album: Classick (2012)
    Submitted By: @tincanman2010 (http://tincanland.wordpress.com/)
    Comments: NSFW! wtf, rap on FBFY? Yeah, deal with it bitches. Eminem broke through rap’s colour barrier and Haze threatens to shatter it’s gender ceiling, so a cover seems appropriate. Similar styles, too

  • Title: 1965 (Duas Tribos)
    Artist: Legião Urbana
    Album (year): As Quatro Estações [2007]
    Submitted By: hoosier buddy
    Comments: First, thanks go out to my last.fm friend Vitória for turning … Continue reading
  • Friday Link Session


    • Morrissey has been diagnosed with a pre-cancerous throat condition, but he’s determined to be back on the stage next week. Check out Louder Than War for more details. Best wishes, Moz.
    • Continuing in the artists-of-the-’80s-who-remain-mighty vein, Depeche Mode have made a video for their lead single, “Heaven”, from their forthcoming album Delta Machine. Watch the video at Stereogum and tell me they shouldn’t be tapped for the next Bond film soundtrack.
    • Dinosaur Jr. made a stop at World Cafe recently, complete with characteristically painful interview segments.
    • Hearth Music posted a trailer for the upcoming Coen Brothers’ film “Inside Llewyn Davis” to their Tumblr. The intriguing-looking movie is based on the memoirs of folk artist Dave Van Ronk.
    • Cleveland’s Weapons of Mass Creation Fest has chosen its dates and venue for this year. Mark August 16 through 18 on your calendar, NEOers.
    • Stupefaction has posted a documentary called “The Britpop Story”. No prizes for guessing what it’s about.
    • Set some time aside for “Wattstax” the documentary of a 1972 concert festival of Stax artists in memory of the 1965 Watts riots. The Staples Singers, Albert … Continue reading

    Video Mix: Madeleine Peyroux, Skyzoo, Everything Everything


    A handful of videos to pique your interest today. We start with the lead single from Madeleine Peyroux’s forthcoming album The Blue Room. It’s a sweet, jazzy, strolling take on Buddy Holly’s “Changing All Those Changes”. The Blue Room releases in March, followed by a tour. Check her official site for more information.

    “Changing All Those Changes” – Madeleine Peyroux


    Next up, Skyzoo pays tribute iconic filmmaker Spike Lee, with a verse from the man, Talib Kweli. It features rapid-fire spitting, majestic horns, and a truly lovely piano outro.

    “Spike Lee Was My Hero” – Skyzoo, featuring Talib Kweli


    Now shake the end-of-the-week dust off with the super danceable “Cough Cough” by UK band Everything Everything. It comes from their EP of the same name, their US debut, which is set for release on February 5. The band will be playing SXSW, followed by shows at the Roxy in L.A. and the Bowery Ballroom in NYC.

    “Cough Cough” – Everything Everything

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