Radio Free Brooklyn and Bushwick Daily are proud to announce a new weekly local-music column that will focus on artists that call Bushwick home. Each week, a Radio Free Brooklyn personality will pen a record or performance review of a different Bushwick based artist, with a curated selection of the best upcoming local gigs in the neighborhood for the following weekend.
Atlas Engine, the project of Brooklyn based singer-songwriter Nick LaFalce, continues to evolve and blossom with each new release. Conceived in 2016 with the release of his first EP, the soothing, yet frank, After The End, LaFalce subsequently shared two rousing, in your face singles, “Don’t Stop Now” and “Shadow Dancer” in 2017 and 2018, respectively. Now, Atlas Engine is back with a brand new track, “New Constellation,” which sees LaFalce challenging himself
even further by incorporating lush aural textures to create a track that’s dreamy and ethereal sounding.
By expanding his sonic palette, “New Constellation” is arguably LaFalce’s most complete and compelling song to date, as his ability to experiment with a denser, electronic sound, while still ensuring that his guitar is the principle puzzle piece, is on full display. Though many artists choose to mollify the guitar in favor of electronics, Atlas Engine instead utilizes a mesmerizing electronic beat to complement his highly skilled guitar work in a perfect balance that avoids the common trapping of sounding too overproduced. Lyrically, the song returns to some of the more personal themes found on After The End, focusing on love, longing, and uncertainty.
What’s refreshing for indie rock fans is that songs like New Constellation experiment electronically without abandoning the genre’s central instrument: the guitar. While many critics may argue that guitar-based music is in decline, songs like “New Constellation” represent a strong counterpoint. It’s not dead, it’s simply evolving in unique and creative ways that preserve what makes the genre exciting. Musicians like LaFalce are still finding fresh, intriguing ways to keep listeners hooked.
Maneka, Cool American, Noods, Long Neck at Trans-Pecos
Wednesday October 17th, 2018 8p.m.
Maneka, the avant-garde project of former Speedy Ortiz member Devin McKnight, headlines a bill that also features the lo-fi, indie-pop stylings of Oregon’s Cool American. This Pacific Northwest duo just released their latest collection of bedroom pop recordings, “Better Luck Next Time Vol. 3” earlier this year. Noods, also released their second EP, Comfort Food, a delightful 5 song collection of indie-punk. Lily Mastrodomis of Long Neck, who recently returned from a European tour playing guitar in Adult Mom, will perform open the show with a rare intimate solo set.
Holy Tunics, Your Dream Coat, Joy Cleaner, Algebra II at Alphaville
Thursday October 18th, 2018 8p.m.
Thursday night at Alphaville features a lethal combination of indie-pop juggernauts from Brooklyn and New Jersey. Topping the bill are local power-pop stalwarts Holy Tunics, who are already back at work in the studio recording the follow up to their excellent debut album, Butter Dish. Also representing Brooklyn are newcomers Your Dream Coat, who currently only have one single to their name, “People Like You.” However, if this tune is any indication, this three piece certainly has more jangly gems up their sleeves. Also performing are two of the Garden State’s most electric trios, Joy Cleaner and Algebra II. Joy Cleaner is dropping a brand new single this Friday on Dromedary Records that features some certified bangers, including the bouncy “Easter Tuesday” and if you’re already nostalgic for the warmer weather, check out Algebra II’s sunny, lo-fi debut EP, Milkshake Summer, in preparation for this gig.
Laraaji, Arji Oceanada, Matthew Nichols at Secret Project Robot
Friday October 19th, 2018 8p.m.
Friday night at Secret Project Robot features an eclectic performance from multi-instrumentalist Laraaji and sound healer Arji OceAnanda. The two new age, ambient artists are celebrating the release of their latest project with Austin based group Dallas Acid. The album, which is titled, Arrive Without Leaving, was recorded in one six-hour session, and has been described as “unconventional and euphoric.” Opening the show is ambient musician, Matthew Nichols.
Big Bliss, Grim Streaker, Flexi, Gustaf at Alphaville
Saturday October 20th, 2018 8p.m.
This weekend is jam-packed with release shows, as one of Brooklyn’s finest trios, Big Bliss, celebrates the release of their highly anticipated debut album, At Middle Distance. The band has already shared three hard-charging singles from the record, “Surface,” “Constants,” and “Duplicate,” so expect to hear the balance of the album in full force on Saturday night. They’ll be joined by goth-punks Grim Streaker, who released their latest single, the surrealist booze inspired “Mojito,” and art-punks Gustaf, who are quickly becoming well known across the city for their intense live shows.
In Case You Missed It…
Kevin Hoopes was out in full force at a jam-packed Our Wicked Lady last Wednesday night for Mark Sultan with The Mystery Lights. He also captured some great shots of one of the opening acts, The Elevator Operators!