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music review: Full Circle Commonwealth Women Up Front

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Full Circle Commonwealth Women Up Front
Static Motor Recordings

–review by Amy Steele

Do you feel that you aren’t that familiar with new bands and artists around Boston? I know that I’ve lost touch with the local music scene. Not that I was ever “in” the scene but I knew lots of bands in the 90s. So oldster that I am now, this GenXer gets excited to discover local artists like Petty Morals, Will Dailey, Telectrix and Freezepop. This 10-track compilation Full Circle Commonwealth Women Up Front developed through a SoundCloud group for indie music in Boston. There’s another site I don’t spend enough time on. Everyone’s on Facebook and I just don’t spend enough time there. Yes, I listen to links that publicists send me but I don’t spend the time browsing the site as I should. Spotify is my go-to and I’ve discovered lots of cool music there.

If you read my website you know that I support women in music and women in the arts and women all around. Women to the front! These days I mostly listen to female solo artists and female-fronted bands. This compilation features Massachusetts women– an eclectic mix of solo artists and female-fronted bands. If, like me, you want to support women in music and women in the arts then check out this collection. Discover some new artists. All these singers and bands excel in writing cool, gorgeous songs. They showcase vocal range and musical prowess. Impossible not to listen to it from start to finish again and again and again. Every song impresses with its songwriting, composition and ability to move, soothe or groove.

Here’s the track listing with my thoughts:

1. Imani Sherley – “I Will Go In Waves”
–gentle. emotive folk from this Smith College student

2. Marriage Material – “Fresh Air”
–60s-inspired electro-pop, extremely catchy and high-energy. female-fronted band composed of: Chelsey Reynolds [vocals]; Beck Goguen [vocals]; John Lieneck [keyboard/synth]; Matt McCarthy [drums];
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3. Electric Wave Inspection Bureau (feat. Kate O’Connor) – “Packets”
–serious EDM. deep beat, quirky and spirited. reminds me of Stereolab.

4. Rachel Thomasin – “Laurels”
–achingly, heartbreakingly gorgeous. lovely vocal range. this singer/songwrier uses a variety of sampling and instrumentation in her mesmerizing arrangements.

5. Aüva – “Into Place”
–shimmery retro-dream pop with sweet female-male vox harmonizing.
members: Miette Hope [keys/vocals]; Jack Markwordt [guitar/vocals]; Jake Levine [guitar/vocals]; Michael Piccoli [drums]; Andy Metzger [bass]; Austin Birdy [percussion]

6. Satellite Sound – “Sunday”
— grungy guitar rock, muffled sounds, strong vocals. reminiscent of 90s bands That Dog or Velocity Girl. members: Danielle Mishkin [vocals/keys]; Michael Miller [guitar]; Jamie Martini [bass]; Levi Ali [drums]

7. Pleasure Garden – “In Death”
–dark, ethereal, dreampop. in the vein of Chelsea Wolfe or Bats for Lashes. duo of Anne Bennett and Ryan Lord.

8. A/J\E (feat. Ada Obieshi) – “Unknown”
–complex arrangements. heartfelt and powerful in its instrumentation and range. Vocals remind me of Valerie Forgione of Mistle Thrush [my forever-favorite Boston band].

9. And Then There Was One – “Dawn”
–pretty, lilting vocals. Melody effectively moves from lulling guitar to churning guitar. solo project of Stevie Caldwell.

10. Six Times Seven – “One of These Days”
–Stevie Caldwell possesses an absolutely gorgeous voice and can shred on guitar. impressive. upbeat pop with this band composed of: Stevie Caldwell [singer/guitar]; Ron Levine [bass] and Dave Zimmerman [drums]
Full Circle Commonwealth Women Up Front is currently available as digital stream or download. Support local music!

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