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Radio Free MP3: Scattergun, The Dukes of the Stratosphear & The Houston Brothers

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"Morning Star" – Scattergun
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On their debut album, Life at Fantasy Lounge Illinois-based Scattergun sound like several different bands all morphed into a solitary group. Like Sybil only with music instead of Sally Field. At different times they sound like Paul Westerburg, Uncle Tupelo, the Beatles and on "Morning Star" they've got a definite Jayhawks vibe going.

With the southern California laid-back groove, and Jeff Falk's warm timbre you'll forget about winters blankets of snow, sleet, and freezing cold and feel like you are somewhere full of sun, beaches, blankets and bingo.

For more dissociative identity disorder music zip on over to their webpage and Myspace page.

"The Mole From the Ministry" – The Dukes of the Stratosphear
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From a band that sounds like everyone to another who sounds like nobody else at all. The Dukes of the Stratosphear were the periodic pseudonym for New Wave British rockers XTC. The Dukes were XTCs attempt to pay homage to the psychedelic sounds of the '60s without mucking up the brilliance of their regular output.

The Dukes are releasing a big old box set containing everything they ever recorded on Andy Partridge's Ape House label. This includes their two studio records (25 O'clock, Psonic Psunspot) a few rarities, a jig-saw puzzle and several trinkets. How cool.

"The Mole in the Ministry" starts out with Grim Fairy Tale weirdness with a tinkling piano and vocals out of some Clive Barker version of hell. It quickly morphs into classic 1960s bubble gum pop and back again. It is a mess of random voices, lovely melodies, and weirdness. A glorious, beautiful mess.

"Confederate Dunce" – The Houston Brothers
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Neither from nor named Houston, these actual brothers (Justin and Matt Faircloth) make multi-layered, multi-instrumental alt-country rocking pop music. Primarily they play as a duo, multitasking their instruments without the use of looping or backing tracks. Impressive it is. More impressive even than their ability to create so many sounds with just two people is how seamlessly wonderful it sounds. Playing keys with one hand and drums with another is pretty cool, but making a great song no matter how many members are in your band is even better.

"Confederate Dunce" is baroque pop meets southern rock with a tinge of Austin folk. Think the Decemberists meet My Morning Jacket. Or something. Good melody. Good groove. Good vocals. Great song.

Their new album, The Archer, comes out January 16. Until then you can hear more on their webpage and Myspace.

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About Mat Brewster

  • http://djcraigsblog.blogspot.com/ dj craig

    those download links don’t seem to work.

  • http://www.themidnightcafe.org Mat Brewster

    Try it now, it should be working.