Archive for “Earth Heat Sound”

First Communion Afterparty’s #1 Album On The Tulip Frenzy 2013 Top Ten List ™ Now Available For Download

Posted in Music with tags , , on December 19, 2013 by johnbuckley100

Yes, the torrent of email continues, with readers wanting to know how they can download Earth Heat Sound by First Communion Afterparty.  Go here!

Not yet up on the iTunes Store, but I believe that if you order the vinyl record, you can immediately download the digital version.  Which means you can listen to the album today, AND you have a holiday gift for your very hip 15-year old nephew.

Wait, you’re not aware of the greatness of First Communion Afterparty?  Ah, easy to rectify.  Just go here!

 

The #1 Album On The 2013 Tulip Frenzy Top Ten List ™ Is First Communion Afterparty’s “Earth Heat Sound”

Posted in Music with tags , , , on December 8, 2013 by johnbuckley100

You may not be surprised by this choice, given how we raved about it, but we were.  The odds were against our saying Earth Heat Sound was the best album of 2013, because until mid-summer, we’d given up on ever hearing the thing.  

By now you know the saga: Tulip Frenzy’s collective belief that First Communion Afterparty were the best band in America, only to find out, sometime after the fact, that they broke up in 2009 or so.  We despaired of ever hearing this record.  And then came word… a mysterious email from Minneapolis… a hint the band was playing one more time… or maybe twice, as they were going to have a record release party…. Did you say record release?  But this must mean… Yes, and they released it a few weeks ago, and our life is complete.  Well, more complete.

Here’s what we wrote:

“Counter to every storyline you might expect, following the conventions of Hollywood, Earth Heat Sound is no disappointment.  It’s an astonishingly great album, showing the growth we would have expected after Sorry For All The Mondays revealed them to be the single greatest buncha hippies at work in our savage land.  What were the circumstances under which the album was recorded, and how it fits into the saga of their breakup, we do not know.  What we know is that bittersweet feeling of being grateful we have this to listen to, and even more distraught that there may never be anything again quite like it.

“Jesus Told You,” which gets things going, captures what’s so special about this band.  Layers of drums and tambourine undergird Joe Werner’s sitar-treated lead guitar, as Liam Watkins strums and sings along with Carin Barno in some Haight-Ashbury choir.  Watkins’ voice always has a punk rock weariness, but when bassist Sarah Rose and keyboard player Marie DeBris wrap their angelic tongues around Carin’s purty warbles, there’s a Mamas’n’Papas sweetness to the overall psyche effect.  That’s the band in miniature: melodic songwriting, ’60s guitar, a deep-bottomed, energetic rhythm section, and a chorus of voices singing around a campfire in Golden Gate Park during The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.  Sparks fly, timelessness rules.

“Balloons” is a reminder that underneath the dreamy vocals and the layers of guitars and keyboards, this is a band powered by Nic Grafstrom, a drummer of the Aynsley Dunbar/Bev Bevan school o’ tricks.  ”Featherhead,” emanates from the Skyline, Starlight EP, but in this fresh context shows how much growth the band made between that first studio album and this.  ”Field of Flowers/Spring Rites” and “Shone Brightly” are two of the songs that, via YouTube, always promised that when Earth Heat Sound was released, it would be a killer.  Included here, our more than three-year vigil for the album was time well spent.

The antecedent that constantly comes most to mind when listening to FCAP, exemplified by a song like “Sleep Away,” is the Jefferson Airplane, which prior to 1970 not only made great records, they were a fantastic live band. “Featherhead” is that rare song here that shows a contemporary influence, in this case My Bloody Valentine.  It’s the exception that proves the rule: First Communion Afterparty were/are sui generis, a band that harkens to the greatest sounds of the Summer o’ Love, while being utterly contemporary.  Admittedly, ending the album with “21AAA”, a 14-minute song, is a bit of a throwback, and yeah, we’ll listen to it about as often as we listen to Ummagumma, but still.

Well done, First Communion Afterparty.  How a band this original, this fine, this thrilling could slip away from us makes the poignancy of the departure only sweeter.

A public service announcement: to buy Earth Heat Soundgo here.  Order it in vinyl, and you’ll get a card to download it too.”

Yep, still not out on iTunes.  WORTH THE EFFORT to buy via the link above.

We Have “Earth Heat Sound” By First Communion Afterparty, And It Was Worth The Wait

Posted in Music with tags , , on November 17, 2013 by johnbuckley100

About five years after my father died, a letter arrived from an old WWII friend of his, saying, “It’s been way too long, buddy, why don’t you write?  Is something wrong?”

We thought of this as we’ve looked over some of the past posts in Tulip Frenzy on First Communion Afterparty.  Beginning around 2009, we began to despair they would ever put out another album as good as “Sorry For All The Mondays and to Those Who Can’t Sing.” By 2010, we couldn’t understand why an outfit we believed to be, by a long shot, the best young exemplars of American neo-psychedelica — our most thrilling rock’n’roll band — were so dilatory in putting out that sophomore record. It took a while for us to learn they’d broken up.

Even though First Communion Afterparty hailed from Minneapolis, they might as well have been from Tibet, for all the news we could find out over the years.  They clearly played SXSW, and one of their videos showed them at the ocean’s edge, so we assume they made it to the West Coast.  But we could never get information about them playing much beyond the borders of Minnesota. But then in 2010 they put out the Skyline, Starlight EP, and our hopes were raised again.  It wasn’t until last summer, when we learned they were to be reconstituted long enough to play at the Bathysphere Psychefest in Minneapolis that word arrived of an actual release date for album #2.  From beyond the grave, First Communion Afterparty actually were going to put out Earth Heat Sound, the vinyl copy of which arrived last night by meth-crazed carrier pigeons who flew two straight nights to get it here.

Counter to every storyline you might expect, following the conventions of Hollywood, Earth Heat Sound is no disappointment.  It’s an astonishingly great album, showing the growth we would have expected after Sorry For All The Mondays revealed them to be the single greatest buncha hippies at work in our savage land.  What were the circumstances under which the album was recorded, and how it fits into the saga of their breakup, we do not know.  What we know is that bittersweet feeling of being grateful we have this to listen to, and even more distraught that there may never be anything again quite like it.

“Jesus Told You,” which gets things going, captures what’s so special about this band.  Layers of drums and tambourine undergird Joe Werner’s sitar-treated lead guitar, as Liam Watkins strums and sings along with Carin Barno in some Haight-Ashbury choir.  Watkins’ voice always has a punk rock weariness, but when bassist Sarah Rose and keyboard player Marie DeBris wrap their angelic tongues around Carin’s purty warbles, there’s a Mamas’n’Papas sweetness to the overall psyche effect.  That’s the band in miniature: melodic songwriting, ’60s guitar, a deep-bottomed, energetic rhythm section, and a chorus of voices singing around a campfire in Golden Gate Park during The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.  Sparks fly, timelessness rules.

“Balloons” is a reminder that underneath the dreamy vocals and the layers of guitars and keyboards, this is a band powered by Nic Grafstrom, a drummer of the Aynsley Dunbar/Bev Bevan school o’ tricks.  “Featherhead,” emanates from the Skyline, Starlight EP, but in this fresh context shows how much growth the band made between that first studio album and this.  “Field of Flowers/Spring Rites” and “Shone Brightly” are two of the songs that, via YouTube, always promised that when Earth Heat Sound was released, it would be a killer.  Included here, our more than three-year vigil for the album was time well spent.

The antecedent that constantly comes most to mind when listening to FCAP, exemplified by a song like “Sleep Away,” is the Jefferson Airplane, which prior to 1970 not only made great records, they were a fantastic live band. “Featherhead” is that rare song here that shows a contemporary influence, in this case My Bloody Valentine.  It’s the exception that proves the rule: First Communion Afterparty were/are sui generis, a band that harkens to the greatest sounds of the Summer o’ Love, while being utterly contemporary.  Admittedly, ending the album with “21AAA”, a 14-minute song, is a bit of a throwback, and yeah, we’ll listen to it about as often as we listen to Ummagumma, but still.

Well done, First Communion Afterparty.  How a band this original, this fine, this thrilling could slip away from us makes the poignancy of the departure only sweeter.

A public service announcement: to buy Earth Heat Soundgo here.  Order it in vinyl, and you’ll get a card to download it too.

So At Least We Know “Earth Heat Sound” By First Communion Afterparty Ships As An LP On Thursday

Posted in Music with tags , on November 11, 2013 by johnbuckley100

That’s right, vinyl gets released on Thursday.  If you want to order the rec, and immediately download three of its songs, head on over to Bandcamp right this sec.

And when might we get a full digital download of what we can honestly say is the album we have most looked forward to hearing since 2009?

We don’t know.  Don’t know what the plans are for iTunes or other fine digital stores near you and your mouse.

But we aim to find out.

 

 

Next Week, At Long Frickin’ Last, First Communion Afterparty Release “Earth Heat Sound”

Posted in Music with tags , on November 4, 2013 by johnbuckley100

It has been a very long wait.  More than five years ago, First Communion Afterparty released Sorry For All The Mondays and to Those Who Can’t Sing, which was the best American neo-psychedelic album of the era, and one of the greatest albums this shuddering, heaving wreck of a land has erupted with since the Jefferson Airplane’s Bless Its Pointed Little Head.

Like every rock critter worth his salt, we counted the days until Earth Heat Sound, FCAP’s follow up, hit the stores.  We’ve been waiting since the fall of 2008, and in the meantime, the band went and broke up. Now, like the Count of Monte Cristo with scratch marks all over his prison walls, we can finally see the day when the album, recorded before their dissolution, finally gets released, for next Thursday, November 14th, First Communion Afterparty come out of retirement to release — we’d say posthumously, but if a band reforms for a show to celebrate the liberation of an album recorded before they broke up, what’s the word to describe it? Exhumously? — okay, we’ll use it.. To release exhumously the album we’ve been waiting for since 2008.

This past summer, we offered advice on how to survive the wait until Earth Heat Sound is finally frisbee tossed to the adoring fans at Turf Club.  The end is nigh.  All you have to do is sleep each night for the next 11 days, and the release date will be upon us.  At long frickin’ last.

Please tell us that, with the release party on a Thursday, the record will be available to us non-Minnesotans, shortly thereafter via iTunes or Amazon?

How To Survive The Wait Until First Communion Afterparty Release “Earth Heat Sound”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2013 by johnbuckley100

When we last reported on First Communion Afterparty, it was prior to their  reuniting to play at the July 5th Bathysphere: A Psychonautical Voyage in hometown Minneapolis.  We knew about it because of a tip from a loyal reader in the Twin Cities, and pulling on the string of magic yarn he dangled before us, we found out not only that, at long bloody last, FCAP are going to release Earth Heat Sound, the album they’d recorded before they broke up, but that there were two off-shoot bands that sound an awful lot like the original Minneapolis psychedelic champions — whom you know we believe to be the greatest band this steaming glorious wreck of a nation has thrown out there since about 2000. We don’t know when Earth Heat Sound is to be released — though we urge any and all FCAP fans to channel info this way — but we do have some instructions on how you can bide the time until the magic moment arrives.  Ready?

1. Go to Bandcamp and listen to Driftwood Pyre’s demo/early version of their forthcoming E.P.  Scenes of The American Midwest Underground Vol. 1 of course takes its name from Big Hits From Mid-America, Vol. 1, the 1979 Twin/Tone sampler from which so many boss Americans learned about the great Suicide Commandos (by that time, forced by Suicide’s lawyers to change their name to The Commandos), not to mention NNB and the Suburbs.  (Come to think of it, wasn’t Vol. 2 how we all first heard of the Jayhawks?) But we digress.  Driftwood Pyre’s Bandcamp songs sound like exactly what you’d expect from the boys in First Communion Afterparty.  (There are two girls in the band, but we don’t know if one is the fantastic bass player who was in FCAP.)  If you just have to have your hit of FCAP Minny Psyche, this is an excellent way to tide yourself over until Earth Heat Sound is, at last, released.

2. Go to Bandcamp and download the single by FCAP offshoot Is/Is.  Not as good as Driftwood Pyre, but the same squalls of guitar wrapped in reverb.  You’ll like it.

3. Go find Three, the third album by the Flavor Crystals, which is more ruminative than the straight-ahead psychedelica of either FCAP or their offshoots, and perhaps not as good as their Television-esque early work, but still a fun listen.

4. If for some reason you’ve been slow on the uptake of checking out the Magic Castles, get thee to the iTunes store and start downloading.  The eponymous 2012 release, produced by mentor Anton Newcombe, is one of the most thrilling records of the past two years, as we pointed out last year when we asked, “Are the Magic Castles the best young band in America?” Landing somewhere between Brian Jonestown Massacre  and classic psyche, we’re disappointed we don’t have a new album to push, but  as of July 8th, their Facebook page was reporting progress on a new ‘un.

5. Finally, for something a little further afield, go check out the Bandcamp page of Fire In The Northern Firs.  Why do we include it here, since they don’t really sound like a Minneapolis psychedelic band?  Mostly because we like their album, which you can download, and the Minneapolis Rock’n’Roll Chamber o’ Commerce promised to send us a lutefisk if we pimped for all their most promising bands.

Hey First Communion Afterparty?  You could end this, and guarantee yourself an audience of, well, dozens, if you’d just give us a firm date for the release of Earth Heat Sound.  (Taps wristwatch.) We are waiting.

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