Posts Tagged ‘Blackbird Blackbird’

Blackbird Blackbird // Tear

Sunday, November 6th, 2011

It’s been a while since I posted something from Mikey Maramag (aka Blackbird Blackbird) partly because I imposed a self-enforced moratorium on tracks by him: the dude just churns out mp3s right-and-left. After giving “Tear” a listen though, I knew I had to throw together a few words and pass along the track for others to hear.

One thing about Mikey is you can never peg a label on him: for one track he’s chillwaving it up with synths out the wazoo, the next he’s sounding like the next iteration of El Guincho tropicalia (not to mention the endless amount of remixes scattered across the interwebs). With “Tear” you get to view yet another face: electro indie-rock (instrumental). The opening harmonies sound like a slowed down, marimba version of Sunset Rubdown’s “You Go On Ahead (Trumpet Trumpet II)” — seriously, listen to the original on youtube — before evolving into a swirl of sound Blackbird Blackbird is best known for.

Maybe I was so caught up on the Sunset Rubdown thing, but I couldn’t help to think about how interesting a “traditional” rock cover of the song would sound. Mikey provided a pretty good baseline to build off of (for example, he seems always at the cusp of belching out the opening words to the first verse, but restrains himself) and I just think it would be great to hear what some good ol’ fashioned guitars, bass, and drums could do with it. Idk, maybe I’m crazy…

Anyways, check out the track below and look out for it in vinyl form in early 2012:

Blackbird Blackbird // Tear

Blackbird Blackbird // Halo

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

With a constant stream of releases that can be dubbed as “blog fodder”, Mike Maramag of San Francisco’s Blackbird Blackbird knows how to make a name for himself in the overly-crowded, overly-pirated, and overly-overt musical landscape of the present. So when he announced an effort to go beyond the digital and release something tangible — sans label, of course — for his Halo LP, it seemed only natural to do it through the popular fundraising site kickstarter.

Only a week or so into the pledge drive, Maramag has already raised a respectable $1,500. However, I must admit it is a bit disconcerting that for an artist who has been covered extensively in the blog-o-sphere by close to 100 different websites (including yours truly), only a handful of people have opened up their wallets to help with this project. Maybe it’s because kickstarter’s mass appeal is a bit overstated, especially in the music blog realm (after all, Marissa Nadler only generated 390 backers for her album — a smidgen of her fan base) or maybe people have a hard time paying for something they can get for free (the album is available for a name-your-price from the group’s bandcamp), but whatever the reason, this project deserves your support. With stuff like this, it’s not only about getting a nice piece of wax or a handmade thank-you, it’s about generating an environment that foster’s creativity and rewards the incredible hard work these artists put into each and everything they do. I’ll get off my soapbox now…

You can check out the title track from the LP below and for the love of god support good music!

Blackbird Blackbird // Halo

Blackbird Blackbird // Fade to White + Starlight

Monday, September 20th, 2010

San Fran’s Blackbird Blackbird has slowly been cropping up all over the blogs this past summer and, as a result, amassed a sizable following. Armed with a trunk full of tracks, remixes, and collaborations — all released since April — this guy is quite the workaholic, and for anyone who follows his twitter feed, there seems to be no stop to the deluge of released material in the foreseeable future.

Even more shocking than Blackbird Blackbird’s prolificness is the quality: every single track is an auto-hit. The two most recently shared tracks, “Fade to White” and “Starlight”, are certainly no exception. With a foundation grounded in “chillwave” (god forgive the name), atmospheric, and bedroom pop, it’s really tough to nail down a proper descriptor for Blackbird Blackbird’s music. Thankfully, this diversity of sound is what sets his music apart from the unlistenable set of imitators. Both of the new tracks have an added layer of female vocals, provided by Emily Reo and Steph Thompson respectively, which definitely compliments the delicate sound of each song.

“Fade to White” is a beautifully constructed track whose phrasing gives it such fluid motion. Reo’s vocals are soft-spoken and placed more in the midground, achieving a delicate balance between being spotlighted and completely overlooked (if the listen wants, they can easily pick out the vox, or if they’d rather just be washed over by the music as a whole, they can do that too). Now “Starlight” is a completely different beast. If there was ever track that was made for the latter stages of a discotheque party, it’s this one. Thompson’s stretched out, whole-note heavy vocals are a perfect pair to the midtempo, woozy synth lines fluttering about around her.

You can download the two tracks below and, while you’re at it, head on over to Blackbird Blackbird bandcamp’s page for a more complete collection of songs (you might want to do it quite because it seems that bandcamp is a contentious issue with Blackbird Blackbird).

Blackbird Blackbird // Fade to White (ft. Emily Reo)

Blackbird Blackbird // Starlight (ft. Steffaloo)

PT Music Mixxx // New Beginnings

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

For those who follow me on twitter, you are probably already aware that I’ve relocated from Portland to Utah this past month. To commemorate this move to a new environment, I’ve made a one-hour mix composed of mainly new groups from the past year-or-so (with the most notable exceptions being DOOM and Big K.R.I.T. — those songs were just too tight to leave out). All these artists have, at some point in time, been on constant repeat while I’ve packed/moved/unpacked my stuff from point A to B this past month. Much love to Delicious Scopitone, YVYNYL, Get Off the Coast, Salad Fork, Beko-DSL, Widows/Watch, and of course all the stellar bands who’ve submitted mp3s to me which have shown up on this mix. Track list and download link is below. Hope you dig “New Beginnings”!

Track List:

Download (109Mb):
MediaFire or Direct Link (if MF is down)