Brooklyn folky quartet A Locomotive will be releasing their debut CD at Mercury Lounge on November 22nd, and even though their spanking new Facebook account only has 12 "likes", this doesn't mean they just formed. Recording this album took them 3 years, but from what we are hearing it was worth the effort. The embedded song "Traveling", an intimate and sparse alt-folk ballad that lazily builds in intensity, is contributing to cure our CMJtis(stress induced disease suffered by music industry people after attending the CMJ Music Marathon - similar to SXSW-itis), and other mellow folk-pop gem found on their myspace profile confirm consistent songwriting output and a noteworthy talent for harmonized backing vocals.
Ambient and slightly androgynous, the duo Belle Mare released their dreamy debut EP “The Boat of the Fragile Mind” earlier this spring. The EP resonates with somber tones and almost whale-like howls, unraveling soft acoustic guitar, simple piano melodies, and occasional subtle drones. The title track features the quivering vocals of Amelia Bushell, one half of the Belle Mare duo with guitarist Thomas Servidone, painting a dreamscape portrait of longing. Charade (streaming below) gently develops an unexpected blue melody that can lull you into the deepest of sleeps - I've heard of people dreaming of sleeping, in NYC. The duo met at an open mic night in Brooklyn and recorded the album in Servidone’s apartment, but notwithstanding the DIY approach, the record is full of character and the sound mature. With their mix of rich surrealism and an almost gothic aura, these song sounds as if played through an antique phonograph inside a parlor room... located in the deepest of our subconscious. While “The Boat” could easily draw comparisons to other dream-poppers Beach House, Belle Mare’s subtleties and extreme sparsness create a stronger emotional drive and more nostalgic appeal. - Devon Antonetti