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Tuesday, July 4th, 2006

Second Guessing

Toronto concert-goers would do well to get acquainted with Oakley Hall as they’ll be passing through town not once but twice in the next few months as support for such notable shows as Calexico at the Phoenix on Thursday and M Ward at the Mod Club on September 11.

Initially formed by ex-Oneida member Pat Sullivan, Oakley Hall hail from Brooklyn but sound about as un-stereotypically New York as you can get. They draw heavily on traditional country forms and arrangements but add a healthy dose of indie rock intensity and psychedelic-fuzz guitar. You know, the sort of thing that once upon a time might have been called (whispers) “alt.country”. But I don’t think people use that term anymore, so I’ll just say that Oakley Hall will appeal greatly to folks who might have once come out and said they listened to (whispers) “alt.country”. But be prepared for an emphasis on the “country” half of the equation. You wouldn’t think it’d be necessary, but some people like only a very specific amount of twang in their tunes. True story.

Oakley Hall have released not one but two new full-lengths in 2006 – Second Guessing back in February and Gypsum Strings last month – so they’ll have plenty of material to choose from on their upcoming tours. They’ve got a reputation as a scorching live act so I’ll be able to report back on the truth of that later this week. In the meantime, check out some of their recorded output – the first one comes from Gypsum Strings, the other three from Second Guessing.

MP3: Oakley Hall – “Lazy Susan”
MP3: Oakley Hall – “Landlord”
MP3: Oakley Hall – “Eyes, Lock & Steel”
MP3: Oakley Hall – “Light Of My Love”
MySpace: Oakley Hall

Amusement Parks On Fire will release their second album Out Of The Angeles in the UK next Monday and from the sounds of the new tracks on their MySpace page, they may have gotten over their My Bloody Valentine-wannabe phase just a little, which is probably a good thing. No word on a North American release of the album yet.

AZNightBuzz talks to Band Of Horses’ Ben Bridwell. Via Largehearted Boy.

Largehearted Boy also has his best-of 2006 so far list up, covering not just music but literature as well. Pitchfork offers up suggestions of great music you might have overlooked (so far) this year.

The New York Daily News talks to Voxtrot (whose EPs are on that PF list) about their recent signing to Play Louder, and I’ve got my photos from their Friday night show in Brooklyn – along with TV On The Radio and Matt Pond PA – processed and uploaded for you viewing pleasure. Not the best set of pics I’ve ever taken but considering I was shooting from dozens of rows back with a 300mm lens in the dark, not too bad.

Still recovering from NYC. In case you were wondering.

np – The Grates / Gravity Won’t Get You High

By : Frank Yang at 9:36 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Right Said Fred says:

    wow, ugliest band ever? they’re up there with radiohead and the tragically hip.

  2. Derek says:

    these guys (and cute gals) rolled through austin recently opening for the constantines, and i have to agree with the hype as they were a damn good act. and it’s no easy task to have to open up for the constantines, but they held their own.