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Unnatural Helpers Announce West Coast Tour

The Unnatural Helpers have been banging around Seattle for a few years now as the perennial hobbyhorse of singer / drummer / songwriter / sole consistent member Dean Whitmore, who has also spent time with such Seattle outfits as the Intelligence, Welcome and Dipers.  Despite the myriad lineup changes over the years, the band has managed to retain and expand on its original sound in a steady and cohesive way - anyone who has witnessed the live show over the years will be well familiar with the band's taut, muscular guitar-rock, driven by Whitmore's whip-tight drumming and usually caustic, often self-deprecating vocals.  Oh, and the songs are always short.  Very short.
 
No words should be wasted listing off the dozen or so people that have passed through the ranks, and even as this is being typed it remains impossible to guess at who all is playing in the current lineup of the band, so let's just agree to focus on the folks that played on the record.  Guitar and sporadic vocal duties are held down by Andrew Greager (Scraps, Popular Shapes) and Johnnie Heinz, while Andrew Sullivan (The Trashies) provides swaggering bass lines throughout, as well as some guitar and the occasional backing vocal.  All the way through Whitmore's half sung / half shouted vocals and lashing drums seem to be racing the rest of the instruments to end of the song.
 
UNNATURAL HELPERS

07/20 - Seattle, WA - Funhouse !
07/21 - Portland, OR - The Know
07/22 - Oakland, CA - The New Parish #
07/23 - Fullerton, CA - Burger Records ^
07/24 - San Diego, CA - Eleven Bar ^
07/25 - Los Angeles, CA - Dark Horse Saloon ^
07/26 - San Pedro, CA - TBD ^
07/27 - Palm Springs, CA - Dillon Roadhouse ^
07/28 - San Francisco, CA - Hemlock ^ *
07/29 - Davis, CA - House party at the Hub ^
 
! - w/ Tit Pig
# - 1-2-3-4 Go! Anniversary Fest
^ - w/ Uzi Rash
* - w/ Eat Skull
 

Unnatural Helpers - Sunshine / Pretty Girls by hardlyartrecords

 

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Fences Announce 10 Day Tour in Support of Limited Edition 7"

In support of a limited edition 7" recorded with the Kentucky rocker Mansions that is to be released on Tuesday, July 26th, Fences are gearing up to play a ten day tour.  The 7" was recorded in April at Avast Studios in Seattle, Washington.  The tour will kick off on July 22nd at the Capitol Hill Block Party.  The 7" will be for sale in select retail shops in Seattle, San Francisco, LA, Chicago, and Louisville, as well as being downloadable digitally through iTunes.  The Fences track on the split is called "Marketplace," and it's a downbeat, self-deprecating, introspective slow-burner Fences have come to be known by and loved for.  

Fences and Mansions Tour:
Friday, July 22 – SEATTLE, WA @ Capitol Hill Block Party Main Stage
Tuesday, July 26 – Split 7″ RELEASE DAY & In-store performance @ Sonic Boom Records in SEATTLE, WA
Friday, July 29 – TACOMA, WA @ Hell’s Kitchen
Saturday, July 30 – SPOKANE, WA @ A Club
Sunday, July 31 – MISSOULA, MT @ Top Hat
Tuesday, August 2 – SIOUX FALLS, SD @ Latitude 44
Wednesday, August 3 – FARGO, ND @ Aquarium
Thursday, August 4 – MINNEAPOLIS, MN @ 7th St Entry
Friday, August 5 – MADISON, WI @ High Noon
Saturday, August 6 – CHICAGO, IL @ Reggie’s Rock Club (Official Lollapalooza After Party) w/Titus Andronicus
Sunday, August 7 – CHICAGO, IL @ Lollapalooza

 

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Seapony Video Premiere from new album "Go With Me"

Seapony's debut full length, Go With Me, is out now on Hardly Art. This week they play a pair of shows in NYC and also unveiled a brand new video for "Where We Go." ‬

The music of Seapony is refreshing in its simplicity. Most songs on Go With Me use no more than three chords, with an average running time around two-and-a-half minutes. In lieu of a human drummer, the Seattle trio entrusts time-keeping to a vintage gizmo the size of a desktop calculator. The lyrics to "Dreaming," the track that catapulted them into the spotlight, are just six lines long. Like Young Marble Giants and Beat Happening before them, this young three-piece has generated excitement that belies their music's modest means. And their back story is just as no-nonsense.

Seapony is songwriter Danny Rowland, singer Jen Weidl, and bass player Ian Brewer. Danny and Ian grew up and made music together in Oklahoma. In 2001, they moved to Olympia, WA. In 2004, Danny visited Cincinnati, missed his flight home, and ended up staying in Ohio for four years; he met Jen during his Buckeye State sojourn. After a period of work and study in Lawrence, KS, the happy couple came west in 2010 and were reunited with Ian in Seattle. Seapony was born.

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SPORTS

If you were listening to KEXP’s Audioasis last Saturday, you already know about Sports, and you can kindly consider this post a refresher on something that rocks.  Sports has a solid, 80’s-style electro sound. The tempo is relaxed, and the synths are backed up with reverberating guitars and melancholic vocals. Comparisons to bands like Depeche Mode are unfortunate, but inevitable. Sports played a great set on KEXP’s Audioasis last Saturday, which you can listen to at http://www.kexp.org/streamarchive/streamarchive.asp, though it won't be up forever.

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Campfire OK

I've got this big wool sweater and, on more than one occasion, I've sat back and thought about what I should be listening to when I'm wearing it.  I'd like something cozy, something with banjos, big choruses, and foot stompers.  Comfortably, Campfire OK has fit my musical wardrobe quandary.  They take the acoustic, rootsy sounds of Fleet Foxes and mesh them with the more orchestral elements of Grand Hallway to come up with some strong jams full of elaborate arrangements and woodsy, lonesome imagery.  Check out Campfire OK at the Capitol Hill Block Party July 24th.

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