Archive for First Communion After Party

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?

First Communion Afterparty Reunite For Next Week’s Bathysphere Psychefest

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , on June 29, 2013 by johnbuckley100

First Communion Afterparty were (are?) the best band to emerge from the squall of the past decade’s neo-psychedelica, and their break-up, two years ago — before releasing Earth Heat Sound, their follow up to their brilliant debut, Sorry For All The Mondays and to Those Who Can’t Sing — was a bummer of the first rank.  But now comes an Owsley-pure jolt of good news: not only are FCAP going to be appearing at next Friday’s Bathysphere: A Psychonautical Voyage, but in the weeks ahead, they are going to perform again, when they release, posthumously if in the flesh, Earth Heat Sound.

The Bathysphere psychefest at First Avenue in Minneapolis, promises to be the best spot on the globe you could be on July 5th, with Dean and Britta headlining, but also our faves Magic Castles, Flavor Crystals, and even Sonic Boom of Spaceman 3 appearing.  Secret Colours, a young Chicago band whose astonishing album Peach has just been released, are a fitting addition to a lineup that also includes stalwarts The Volta Sound.  If you are anywhere between Pittsburg and Sioux Falls on the 4th, get in your rainbow-colored VW bus and head to Minneapolis.

We know about next week’s Bathysphere, and the glorious news about First Communion Afterparty, due to the tip provided by  the very helpful Twin City denizen Ben Schultz, who not only gave us this info, but also steered us toward Is/Is, one of the FCAP offshoot bands.  Additionally, Ben turned us on to Mojo Pin-Up, a presumably deceased combo including Liam Watkins of FCAP with members of the Magic Castles, whose tailings, deposited across the web, are tantalizing.

The other FCAP offshoot to keep your eye on is Driftwood Pyre, whose early demos capture the same magic as First Communion Afterparty — that same melding of Jefferson Airplane and the Brian Jonestown Massacre that gets our heart fluttering faster their our cranial synapses.

So, lots to chew on.  And here are your instructions: First Communion Afterparty return to play next weekend, and will finally release the album we’ve waited for since 2008; set a reminder to buy Earth Heat Sound, and if you haven’t already listened to Sorry For All The Mondays, aw, man, what are you waiting for?  Set your GPS on next Friday’s Bathysphere psychefest in Minneapolis.  Immediately go buy Secret Colours’ amazing new album Peach. Track down Mojo Pin-Up.  Wait for new happenings from Is/Is, and get excited, now, for Driftwood Pyre.

Thing are looking bright, no?

Are The Magic Castles The Best Young Band In America?

Posted in Music with tags , , , , on August 23, 2012 by johnbuckley100

We saw the Magic Castles open for the Brian Jonestown Massacre at the 930 Club last night.  Too often, you have to endure opening acts to get to the main event, and few things are worse than having to sit through the thudding gyrations of bands you find just fundamentally lacking.  This is not so much the case when the BJM are in town; Anton Newcombe is many things, and one of them is a good mentor, as evidenced by how many of the bands we love have cited, on their websites, that they toured with the Brian Jonestown Massacre.  It’s like a punk rock Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval, playing with BJM, and it’s worth showing up an hour earlier than otherwise you might. We’ve liked The Young Sinclairs, and that Icelandic band, Singapore Sling, they had open for them in 2009, and didn’t we see the Flavor Crystals open for them once? But The Magic Castles were… magic.

Imagine John Densmore drumming while Dean Wareham and Sterling Morrison back up Neil Young.  We’d read the reference to them in last week’s issue of The New Yorker, capsule-previewing their opening for the BJM with that shorthand citation: a comparison to the Velvet Underground.  As some know, Tulip Frenzy has an office policy, rigidly enforced from the senior staff on down to the interns, to be curious about any band that is referenced in the same sentence as the VU, either as in, “They sound like the Velvet Underground,” or, “They sound nothing like the Velvet Underground.”  We don’t much care which way it goes; any such reference is worthy of our checking it out.  Only, when we saw them play last night, we didn’t think of the VU so much as First Communion Afterparty, the Doors, Luna, Kurt Vile, Fripp and Eno, or maybe it’s Cluster and Eno — all of them great character references.

So we didn’t know they were from Minneapolis, which makes some sense given the FCAP vibe.  They’re not really like the late and lamented psyche-tyros — granted, the Magic Castles’ music, especially as recorded, has these psilocybin traces of the color spectrum limning its edges, though not the lysergic propulsion of that other sadly mothballed Minneapolis band.  On vinyl, on the eponymous record they put out on Anton’s A Records, they’re more like an entrant into the Elephant 6 landscape: ’60’s vocals that emerge like beekeeping monks who have all just swallowed  something interesting spontaneously breaking out into song, while the guitar notes wind around their black-clad habits like a quietly buzzing but sonically active hive.  Live, though, they were tougher, more Summer of Luvish, a band we could imagine coming not from the Twin Cities but from our Notional Brooklyn, where the artisanal hippies have all gone to roost, tinkering in their workshops, a serious Portlandia where everything is made of fresh-baked fixins that have tasty undertones.  Yeah, the Magic Castles make you think this way.  Let’s hear more.

The Ones That Got Away: 2008 Albums Tulip Frenzy Wished It Had Noticed

Posted in Music with tags , , , , on November 18, 2009 by johnbuckley100

As the gang at Tulip Frenzy World HQ gets ready to prepare the 2009 Tulip Frenzy Top Ten List, let’s just acknowledge that long about February, we’ll already be playing music we missed from this year and saying, “Damn, how did we miss that?”  So just to clear up some  loose ends, let’s put down the list of music from 2008 we flat out missed.  There was a lot of good music that came out in 2009, but here’s what we listened to from 2008, regretting it took us so long.

First Communion After Party

How it was we missed the best record by a new band in 2008, we may not know, and we’re not too proud to admit it.  FCAP’s Sorry For All The Mondays and To Those Who Can’t Sing was the best debut since, dunno, Echo and the Bunnymen?  The Pixies? This neo-psychedelic powerhouse from Minneapolis was on the iPod all year long.  Too bad we couldn’t have given them their due.  And boys and girls?  Time to get back in the studio and crank out a new one.  After all, since we consider you as good as, if not better than, Black Mountain, the Black Angels, the Warlocks, Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound, and have been telling this to everyone we meet, it’s time to pick up the slack and crank out new tunes!  We want you to put out the best album of 2010!

Tift Merrit

We really like Tift Merrit, we just got a little sick of her circa Bramble Rose. Somehow last year she came out with a killer album, Another Country, and it wasn’t until this year that we went, Who was that?  And sure ‘nough, it was Tift.   Who uncorked a scorcher of a country’n’torch song soulfest.  Love it.

Darker My Love

Straight out of the BRMC school of fuzztone punk, kickass beat, and solid, throbbing mid-tempo songwriting, Darker My Love released their second album in 2008, imaginatively entitled 2, and we missed it.  Fortunately, we got on the bandwagon and discovered their even better eponymous first album from 2006 (they save their creativity for the studio, not titling their albums.)  Wish we hadn’t missed ’em, glad it wasn’t a permanent error.

King Khan and The Shrines

We’re not even sure we missed them last year; it may have been the year before.  After all, one of the two or three greatest garage rock songs of the last decade is their “Outta Harms Way.”  But if you go sleuthin’, you’ll find it shows up on various albums spread out over a couple of years.  The one on the obscure Serbian label may have come out first, or was the Burkina Faso version?  Anyway, the version we first heard came out last year.  Missed it.

Okay, enough admission of fallibility.  We’re not planning on going on a self-lacerating kick.  It happens.  Wait til next year… when we review what we’re about to miss when compiling our list of the best of this year…


Today’s Best Rock’n’Roll Lets Its Freak Flag Fly

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , on September 7, 2009 by johnbuckley100

The greatest rock’n’roll band in America today is First Communion After Party. They’re too young to have drivers licenses — or maybe it’s that they need some gig money to afford a van — so they don’t travel from Minneapolis very much, but man, when they do, can’t wait to see ’em.  We anxiously await the follow up to Sorry For All The Mondays And To Those Who Can’t Sing, and on their MySpace page, there’s a tantalizing reference to an album launch party in November.  Aside from FCAP, where’s all the energy in music during these econolyptic days?  Way over there on the furry side o’ the dial.

Uncut Magazine just put out a new CD with the October issue entitled Seeing For Miles, and it’s the best compilation they’ve done in years.  It turned me on to three bands in particular that have brought plenty of joy to this Labor Day weekend.  Let’s go through ’em.

Assemble Head In Sunburst Sound has First Communion After Party’s reverence for Summer o’ Love era Airplane, including that boy/girl choir in between crunchy guitars, but they also work their way back to bluesy power riffs probably in the same manner that Black Mountain get there.  When Sweet Sleep Returned is an astonishment: great songwriting, the ability to rock hard or soft, John Cippolina guitar cantering down through the desert sage, with Radio Birdman piano twinkling every once in the while.  The only complaint I have is with the album’s production, which is muddy in the middle.  These guys are the real deal, and they come by their San Fran roots naturally, as they, um, come from there.  Recently the WashPost had a funny piece on the problems Ang Lee had finding genuinely skinny, non-buff, hair folk to cast as extras in Taking Woodstock.  Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound play with muscle, but here’s betting they don’t actually have any.

Abouretum hail from Baltimore, and immediately join Greg Kihn and David Byrne in that town’s Rock Hall of Fame.  The singer sounds like Richard Thompson, and come to think of it, some of the songs on Song of The Pearl sound like they could have been performed by Fairport Convention.  But then they’ll turn a corner and the guitars going spiraling off into shafts of light, and dust motes tickle our brains.  A little more of Rock band than others on the neo-psychedelic left bank.  Way listenable and cool nonetheless.

Okay, we’ve been hearing about Wooden Shjips for years without actually hearing them, but their highly caffeinated trance music on Dos is so good for listening to while exercising in the gym, I think I’m going to forever ruin my chances to be cast in an An Wang movie.  Uncut refers to Spaceman 3 when doing their liner notes on the cut WS add to the sampler, and I can see that.  It’s just there’s no way these guys are ever going to evolve into Spiritualized.  Too much propulsion, too much beat.

Ok, haven’t yet listened to Six Organs of Admittance, and the new White Denim isn’t out yet (though seems to be preceded by thunderous acclaim).  But these three bands are a start.  If you think about where the fun has been these last few years, The Warlocks, Black Mountain, Black Angels come to mind.  And then First Communion After Party vaulted way up their on the Coolo’Meter.  Add at least Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound to your play list, and let your freak flag fly.

The Warlocks’ “Mirror Explodes” And The Shards Shine Darkly

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , on May 21, 2009 by johnbuckley100

When L.A. psychedelic masters The Warlocks released 2003’s Phoenix, it was filled with enough exuberance for a Modern Lovers album.  “Shake The Dope Out” even kinda sounded like “Roadrunner.”  And then there was “Baby Blue,” as sweet a confection of SoCal Britpop as anything produced by BJM or members of the Paisley Underground.

But things got darker from there, witness the titles of their next two albums — Surgery and Heavy Deavey Skull Lover. This was disappointing, because at their best, The Warlock’s were the Alpha dogs of the nascent American neopsychedelic scene — big brothers to the Black Angels, regional counterparts to Vancouver’s Black Mountain.  They are the grandparents of First Communion After Party, the ones that show up and leave cigarettes in the punch bowl and ashes right next to the rosary that was the gift of Aunt Martha. They could bash their way darkly through six-minute guitar fests with Bobby Heksher singing like some exile from The Darkside, like maybe the member of Spaceman 3 who was left on launch pad because he was just too heavy to get into orbit.  Call him Spaceman 4.

Now comes The Mirror Explodes, and it’s the best thing they’ve done in six years. Maybe the concoctions they consume keep them from ever returning to the relative innocence of their Phoenix days, but they’ve sure resurrected themselves from the ashes. Okay, so the opening song sounds like late ’80s Sonic Youth, and surely “There Is A Formula To Your Despair” was swiped from Kramer’s apartment after an early Galaxie 500 session.  But these are compliments, man.  They’ve got a little of their swagger back, even if it’s 33 RPM swagger in a 45 RPM world.  The Mirror Explodes, and after you duck, you realize things are shining brightly all around the room.

New Songs By First Communion After Party

Posted in Music with tags , on April 27, 2009 by johnbuckley100

Now see here:

Is First Communion After Party The Best Twin Cities Band Since NNB?

Posted in Music with tags , , on February 28, 2009 by johnbuckley100

I think yes.  Since midweek, I can’t quite get to listening to any other band.  Sorry For All The Mondays… doesn’t have a single bad song on it.  Yeah, below you can see the initial reference points: Jefferson Airplane, shoe-gaze bands like Spaceman 3, bands like Black Mountain and the Black Angels and the Warlocks.  But these guys are magical.  Aside from having the best band name since The Rolling Stones, they’re the best Minny band since the legendary NNB of Big Hits From Mid-America fame, whose 30th anniversary hits this summer.  (They’re going to have a festival at the Hump Dome to honor the occasion.  Editor: no, they’re not.)

Tulip Frenzy wouldn’t steer you wrong: download “2CB” and if you don’t like it, we’ll give 99 cents to the charity of your choice.

Austin Get Ready: First Communion After Party Is Playing SXSW

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , on February 25, 2009 by johnbuckley100

Ah, I still remember my first communion after party: all the seven-year olds swimming on a bright May Sunday, school almost out, summer near.  Maybe we saw God, but probably not the way First Communion After Party does.  These guys are maybe the best neo-psychedelic band to have emerged in recent years, which when you think about it, is saying something.  If they set their amps up in a Catholic church parking lot, the Warlocks and Black Angels would put down their bingo cards and listen.  They’re that good.

If Byron Coley isn’t a charter member of the FCAP fan club, I’ll give up music for Lent.  See, they’ve got this Grace Slick/Marty Balin, Exene/John Doe thing going on vocals.  The guitarists have spent a lot of time listening to the 13th Floor Elevators.  I’ve seen an interview in which they deftly eschew the comparisons to the Brian Jonestown Massacre, but admit to getting their noses into the same batch of altar wine: Spaceman 3, Spiritualized, the Darkside, that whole tribe.

Austin get ready, these guys are going to be the biggest thing hitting SXSW other than the premiere of the film The Least of Me (which has a simultaneous premiere at, FYI.)  If you want a little taste right now, go to the iTunes Store and download Sorry for All The Mondays and To Those Who Can’t Sing, which is either the best album title I’ve heard in a while or the worst, I can’t decide.  I do know this: if my First Communion After Party had sounded like this, I might have kept the faith.

%d bloggers like this: