Band(camp) of the Week: The Nico Blues

These Jersey guys first came to my attention when they told The Aquarian Weekly that they were named after Shannon Hoon’s daughter. While I was expecting to hear a Blind Melon tribute band, I was pleasantly surprised to find a mixed bag of indie rock sounds on The Nico Blues “Blame the Boredom, Blame the Basements” and if there’s a Blind Melon influence in the music, I can’t easily detect it.

Then again, I’m not sure I agree with the bands that The Nico Blues have been compared to: Fugazi,Pavement, The Grateful Dead and the Smashing Pumpkins. The Nico Blues don’t sound like a punk band, a hippie/jam band, or an egotistical arena-rock band. They also don’t sound like The Blood Brothers although they are times that the vocals share some similarity between the two bands. Whatever it is they sound like, I’m digging it.

Recommended for fans of: The Blood Brothers, Modest Mouse, Pavement, Free Diamonds, Toys That Kill

Band(camp) of the Week: Love in October

Did a little web-searching on Chicago-by-way-of-Sweden’s Love in October and found previous comparisons to a bunch of bands that I’m too old to enjoy (The Plain White T’s, Motion City Soundtrack, blink-182). This made me a bit leery of checking out LiO’s newest EP, Love in October II. But considering the lack of investment (the EP is available to download for free through Feb. 8), I’m glad I checked it out.

While the band’s earlier influences have been Alternative Press cover boys in the last 10 years, it’s as if Erik and Kent Widman – the brothers and principal songwriters for LiO – decided to order some archived issues of AP from the mid-90s and create a sound more akin to bands like Pavement (“Paper Heart” reminds me of “Shady Lane”), The Dismemberment Plan and Modest Mouse (“Desperate”).

Recommended for fans of: Pavement, Modest Mouse, Weezer, Shout-Out Louds

Band(camp) of the Week: The Short Summers

Kicking off 2011 with a new feature – Band(camp) of the Week. One of the greatest sites I found for discovering new music in 2010 was Bandcamp.com. It reminds me a lot of the early days of MP3.com where unsigned or independent bands would post free music for people to check out. The idea is similar with Bandcamp.com – artists upload their music and then set a price for it – often, many bands just want the exposure and the chance to be heard and give their music away for free or for a very low price (many EPs and full lengths start with a suggested $1 donation).

Boston’s The Short Summers packaged together their individual 7″ releases into one download on Bandcamp.

Recommended for fans of: Pavement and Steve Malkmus’s solo material.