We’re continuing our virtual travels across the US in search of new and exciting sounds and this time our eyes and ears are on Connecticut! Jump into PIM archives in order to hear more music from across the USA.
It seems that Paul Belbusti (aka Mercy Choir / 1/2 of Connecticut act Rivener) fully mastered the art of writing dark and atmospheric songs. We got our first taste of Paul’s work via 2017 “Like a Fountain Stirred” – a descent into the deepest regions of psyche. His recent “More Than Ever” EP feels like a cheerier sounding record, but still retains the atmospheric/otherworldly vibe characterizing the rest of his work.
Clones of Clarence
El Album, this New Haven’s project debut, is chock full of rather pleasant (and pleasing) electronic pop / R&B – no revelations to be found here, but it is done rather tastefully. Speaking of taste – Coulter Davis, the man behind the project, also works as a chef/barista.
If there’s one band that never gets tired of creating ambient textures, its Connecticut’s Landing. Essentially a solo vehicle for Aaron Snow (backed up by a revolving-door lineup), the band put out countess EPs and albums since the late 90s, all characterized by a very distinct flavor of ambient/space rock. Their latest is Bells in New Towns that came out El Paraiso Records – earlier in the year Snow also put out an EP under the name Turning.
Rare it is to encounter something that manages to balance melody, prog-rock complexity and unstoppable energy in the way that “Elusive Firsts” from Ourselves Alone does. While music on OA’s debut is purely instrumental, lack of vocals are more than made up by the fact of how effortlessly the band members capabilities of going from melody to dissonance and back.
Equally rare to encounter someone that can handle a multitude of style with no sweat – that would be Ceschi (aka Ceschi Ramos). The man is a fireball of energy while onstage, whether he’s doing freestyles or grabbing the guitar in order to sing about how much being in jail sucks.
Where Andrew WK likes to party hard, those Connecticut maniacs not only do that, but also bulldoze everything moral and decent that stands in their way while at it. Who’s there to stop them, really?
They don’t make pop music like this anymore, but maybe the reason is that there is no other pop music we know of that sounds remotely like Waveform (Ween might be a good comparison). Short, catchy songs filled with nostalgia for places that you never been to.
No relation between the two CT-based guitarists, but we decided to close out our roundup due to the fact that both are awesome in their own special way. Evan used to live in Seattle and writes little instrumental ditties for a variety of labels (latest one being Dead Definition) – beautiful ones at that. Mary is the most future-seeking guitarist who collaborated with Weasel Welter and creates some mind-melting soundscapes that clearly bear the stamp of WW’s own work.
Suggestions by Others
Mercy Choir suggested Lys Guillorn (see guest mix by MC)
Tommy Barvick suggested his new band Arcadia (funk-grunge from Haven, CT)
Raised by Gypsies suggested Human Flourishing and Glambat
Serpentine Skies suggested Dan Barrett (Have a Nice Life / Gate / Nahvalr) – read our interview with Steve/SS