We’re exploring music of Missouri with some help from Whettman Chelmets (who also gave us a fabulous guest mix last month). You can read more about his work on Echoes and Dust, Fuzzy Sun and Houdini Mansions.
Dive into PIM archives to hear music from Alabama, Arizona, Louisiana and more!
Right now, the biggest as far as underground/indie stuff goes is Foxing. Kinda emo, kinda post rock, kinda indie. Not really my thing, personally, but I get why they have the following they have:
Bummer is more of a noise rock, sludge, punk, metal kind of thing. More up my alley in terms of taste:
XOS Musik is out of Kansas City. Kinda industrial, noise, drone types of stuff they put out digital and on cassette.
Skin Graft Records out of St. Louis is a pretty big indie label. Do a lot of math rock indie type stuff. as well as alternative and noiser rock types of things. Fades by Cheer-Accident is really good:
Distorted Visions is more of a noise, DIY cassette thing. I’m friends with one of their artists (Terminal Island) but they do interesting work:
Justin Mank, the guitarist from St. Louis’s hardcore/metalcore Not Waving But Drowning, has been doing more drone/ambient guitar stuff lately as Two Hands, One Engine.
He’s a nice guy, and I like his work:
Those are some of the statewide ones. As far as where I live, the biggest one is probably Somebody Still Loves Your, Boris Yeltsen, but they are more indie pop:
Wee Rock Records as been doing garage rock out of Springfield for 20+ years now. Really nice people:
You’ll find The Itch on there. More garage/punk type stuff. They’re friends of mine from when we were teens back in the 90s.
I really like Space Dingus. They are a spacey type surf rock group from here in Joplin that just started a couple of years ago.
Nice kids, and they do something pretty interesting:
Two of the people that keep me on my toes personally as far as music go is the Mayor of Donutville and Justin Deremo. The Mayor of Donutville is a one-man recording project from Carthage, Missouri, who draws a lot of inspiration of surf and Esquivel type arrangement and production. Very unique arrangement skills. I feel like I’m the 50 Cent to his Kanye in terms of production at times.
Justin Deremo is someone who I’ve known since I was 16, and if I had a best friend group, he’s in the top 5. Still keep in touch irregularly. He never likes the idea of putting his music out there. As he told me recently, he’d rather have 1 person out there who gets it as opposed to be a flavor of the week, and he’s just busy with social work and raising a kid. No one I know listens to music with as much depth as him, and the music he puts out is kinda this electronic kitsch dub type of thing that when he gets serious is really beautiful. https://justinderemo.bandcamp.com/ He hasn’t updated his bandcamp in like 11 years, and post sporadically on Soundcloud.
These are a couple of my favorites: