portland

SXSW Presents: Floating Room

 In what is best described as "gray pop," the music Floating Room makes creates a sense of mellow desire; a longing manifested through their use of droned hums and haunting vocality. Floating Room is the musical partnership between Maya Stoner (ex-Sabonis) and Kyle Bates (Drowse, also featuring Stoner), though their partnership expands to much more than what started as bedroom pop recordings. In a romantic sense the couple's chemistry, aside from their collective experimental and artistic capacity, helps make Floating Room what it is. Tenderness isn't feared on either of their ends, and their propensity for support behind the instruments and in front of them is evident 

Sunless, the band's 2016 full-length debut on Good Cheer Records, married deep socio-emotional themes with paralyzing sounds. Stoner and Bates trade off guitar and synth duties as they channel part of makes Sunless (and the way they play together in general) beguiling - its vulnerability. Stoner sings about the transition from a bad relationship to a much better one, touching on abuse of power and misogyny along the way. For most, the subject matter is relatable, giving a welcoming sense to each of the tracks.

The openness presented on the album translates into Floating Room's live performances as well. They'll be touring with Alien Boy (which is led by Sonia Weber, Floating Room's sometimes drummer) and are playing four SXSW dates, so see them as much as you can.

   

The Hugs bring love with 'New Utopia'

 Since 2007, garage-pop quartet The Hugs have radiated nothing but sheer entrancing energy. Sometimes more on the rocking side, sometimes more on the power-pop side, The Hugs have never ceased to embed a sense of angst in their tracks despite their affectionate name. And now, on the day truly meant for love in a calendrical sense, The Hugs are sharing some new tunes with just as loving of an air.

Sure, the band have touched on romantic notes before, but this Valentine's Day release sees the band occupying more of a sweet realm with their new EP New Utopia, manifesting amorous undertones through a more tender, dreamy synth-pop that's just as indelible as songs the before it. It's the perfect triad of love-themed tracks from one of your favorite bands, and it couldn't have come on a better day.

Listen to all three of New Utopia's tracks below, accompanied by their saccharine video for "L.A.H.L.I.T (Look At How Long It Took)" below.

   

PREMIERE: Wonka Vision - "Application"

Back in April of last year, the eclectic and commanding jazz heads of Echo Pearl Varsity won our Artist of the Month poll, a designation given to those local acts that sit high and esteemed in the hearts of local music appreciators. The jazz-fusion post-rock hybrid group is led by principle songwriter Sam Luna, who has momentarily shifted his focus onto his solo endeavors, recorded under the moniker Wonka Vision. Presently, much won't be found online, but that's why we're pleased to share the premiere song and video from Wonka Vision's debut solo album, titled "Application."

Luna directed, edited and starred in the sci-fi Netflix series Black Mirror-inspired video, based on the overuse of internet and cellphones, and how digital technology is essentially numbing society. "[Cellphones are] disrupting our daily lives, taking up useful hours and all together just rotting our brains," says Luna. "Through the digital world we refrain from human experiences, which cause us to be less social, more self-conscious and more depressed."

The ending of the video goes further to display this point, with one of characters caring more about her online persona than reality, which is how Luna feels most people are in the current age. He even titled the whole DIY album, which is due out February 23, as White Mirror.

Numb out to "Application" below and be on the lookout for the White Mirror drop later this month.

   

Electronic

Time: 
09:00
Band name: 
Vákoum
FULL Artist Facebook address (http://...): 
https://www.facebook.com/vakoum.music
Venue name: 
Doug Fir Lounge
Band email: 
   

Women Crush Music's triumphant return

 *pictured: Haley Johnsen and Kingsley

Women deserve the most appreciation ever, to be quite honest, and the kind that goes much farther than just wearing a button or posting a picture of a femme you find attractive on a Wednesday. The type of adoration and appreciation women need, especially in a time where it's becoming more and more widely realized that women are frequently abused and mistreated, is the type that Women Crush Music provides.

Founded by Ashley Kervabon, Women Crush Music is a showcase that started in early 2017 with the mission of encouraging, inspiring and exhibiting local femme singers and songwriters. Now in over 10 cities, it relaunched at the beginning of 2018 as a nonprofit, with a staff spanning from the west to east coast. Portland, its flagship city, will be the only locale chapter to host showcases every month at its new venue home the White Eagle, while the other cities will have showcases six times a year. 

“There is such a need for what we are doing here at #WomenCrush, and how quickly we’ve grown in the last 6 months really goes to show that," says Kervabon."

"By relaunching as a non-profit organization we believe we will be better able to fulfill our mission at #WomenCrush Music, which will always be to support women artists in whatever we way can. I am hopeful that we will continue to expand in the states, Canada, Mexico and then intercontinentally and I am excited to continue empowering women in music and for all of our future plans.”

Women Crush Music's first show of the year features Kingsley, Haley JohnsenEmily Aldridge, Hayley Lynn, Isabeau Waia'u Walker, Jessa CampbellMaiah Wynne, Shae Altered, and Tara Velarde.