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A Look in The Local Bin: Valley Hush

Yeah, it’s Black Friday. If you’re not traipsing through the holiday shopping track (or helping those find the perfect gift for everyone on their list), then you’re probably relaxing at home, or, at least, that’s what I would be doing. In any case, if you’re trying to find the perfect album to listen to while […]

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Middle of The Map: Friday at The Midland

  Last night at The Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland was spectacular. BLKFLANL kicked things off by setting the bar almost impossibly high. Between Barrel Makers’ taut lyrics and Conductor Williams’ beats (which he made exclusively from records he picked up at Mills Record Company), BLKFLANL proved this show had no warm-up, that it […]

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Beastmaker Has Arrived

Beastmaker‘s debut, Lusus Naturae, has finally arrived on wax. The collection of heavy, Black Sabbath-worshipping, hazed-over riffage was due back in March but pressing issues delayed it until now. As promised by the Fresno based trio’s single, Lusus Naturae is collage of 70s-tinged metal. The whole album focuses on groove over grind for a feel that is dark without […]

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The First Two Nights of Middle of The Map

So Middle of The Map has begun. Mills Record Company started the music portion of the multifaceted fest with Be/Non, Jorge Arana Trio, and Monta at Odds on Wednesday and kept the party going with Psychic Heat, The Conquerors, and Shy Boys last night.      But Middle of The Map spilled all through the […]

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Middle of The Map: Saturday

There’s nothing like opening day jitters. Today is the first day of the music portion of Middle of The Map. Moving from now until the 7th, Middle of The Map will have over 100 bands playing all over the city. I’ve written about some of them: here, here, here, here, and here. Now, on the […]

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Deadsmoke’s Self-Titled is a Sleeper

To say Deadsmoke‘s self-titled debut is heavy is an understatement. The five song album is a veritable quagmire thick distortion, growling vocals, and murky riffs. Deadsmoke fits squarely within the pantheon of doom–I’m thinking specifically of Sleep, Windhand, Uzala, and Electric Wizard. The album is a definite must have for any fan of smokey riffs. The album […]

New Releases

4/29/2016 New Releases at Mills Record Company

Aesop Rock — The Impossible Kid (includes green & pink neon vinyl, custom printed sleeve, die cut jacket, 24-panel fold out poster, full album lyrics) A.J. Cornell & Tim Darcy — Self-titled (cassette) All India Radio — The Slow Light Andrea Day — Cheers to the Fall (2xLP) The Barr Brothers — Alta Falls (colored […]

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Woods and Ultimate Painting @ Riot Room

There’s something earthy to the the melodies and rhythms of both Woods and Ultimate Painting. Woods makes music that jumps between rural ambiance and funk-fused folk, and Ultimate Painting’s sound is folk-centered shrouded by strikingly honest indie pop. The two acts both have a quality to their sounds that is warm and inviting, poppy without […]

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Record Store Day Favorite: Jazz Dispensary

So Record Store Day 2016 has come and gone. And after celebrating one of the coolest days for vinylphiles (and subsequently recovering), I think I have to say, without a doubt, one of my favorite releases was The Jazz Dispensary box set. The four LP boxset (all set on colored vinyl) boasts a cosmic journey […]

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Who to See: The First Day of Middle of The Map

As I wrote yesterday, Middle of the Map is quickly approaching. And while its headliners include some of the best performers around, I think the most fun thing about the fest is catching local bands showing off what Kansas City music is. Ink Magazine and The Record Machine make sure each day is packed with […]

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Middle of The Map: Vince Staples

There’s a certain confidence that comes with youth. For me, that confidence never came with insight. Vince Staples, on the other hand, has the ability to cut through the post-modern complex with one-liners that ring true in all their layered meanings. The first line of Summertime ’06 is “Hey I’m just a n****, until I fill […]

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Bombino’s Latest Joins The Guitar Funk World

Bombino is a guitar wizard. His licks have all the pluck of Jil Jilala (though Algeria separates the two band’s home countries) and all the hook of The Dirty Projectors. This aesthetic similarity makes sense becauze Dave Lonstreth of The Dirty Projectors coproduced Azel with Bombino. The result is an album that is full of aural […]