Let Low Lily Set The Tone

By on Dec 7, 2016 in Interviews | 0 comments

I figure, the best way to listen to the traditional folk trio, “Low Lily,” is lying flat on your back, staring up into the blinking branches sparking off the ornaments on your Christmas tree. Get your head right under that tree. Fire up a glass of red, find those old thermal pajamas, lock the kids in the basement and turn up the volume. Not too loud now. Go easy. Low Lily will set the tone. Listen to Flynn Cohen pick that mandolin — slow and steady and well studied in the craft. Feel the pulse of your fingertips as Liz Simmons sings a ballad or two about old world Ireland. Lissa Schneckenburger will fiddle you right into a trance before the brass of New Orleans comes calling. But, if you haven’t bought a Christmas tree yet or only itch in thermal, then simply come down to New England College in Concord this Friday night and hear Low Lily for yourself. The show...

Right Time for Wrongtown

By on Nov 30, 2016 in Interviews | 0 comments

It’s the right time for Wrongtown Productions to arrive on the music scene. Started by local musicians Eric Ober, Brad Schneider, Micheal Crane, Corey Garland and Mark Trottier, the idea of the artist dissecting the artist is intriguing. Generous even, considering both subject and interviewer are so entwined creatively within the majesty and anguish of being a musician. Music is a hard business. Hard to get recognized, hard to make money, hard not to spend money (especially when the trough is rusted out) on video and recording costs. So, Wrongtown might ask, why go it alone? Why not take advantage of this beautiful concept based solely off kindness? It’s not a business, Wrongtown will tell you, it’s simply a “garden” of artist helping each other to grow as one. Need a video shot and an interview done but don’t have the tools, cash or connections to...

Thanks To You!

By on Nov 24, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Every year I wish my buddy T-Bone a “Happy Saint Patrick’s Day” he says the same thing to me: “Bobby, I’m Irish every day of the year.” His terseness is honorable if not somewhat annoying, but I understand what the big lug is saying. He’s letting me know that ones heritage and religion or race doesn’t need to come packaged and sold in order to recognized. I get it. Sweet of him to jam it down my throat. But I remind Big T that reflection is a celebration in itself. We need it as humans, those rarified moments during the year when we’re forced to admit our thanks to the world. Whether it’s to the gods at Christmastime or a pile of punch drunk friends during Thanksgiving or to that weekend lover you hustled onto the legion hall dance floor on Valentines Day, giving thanks is a healthy gesture. And those on the receiving end of that appreciation can only feel warmth upon acceptance....

Film and Music with Mark Battle

By on Nov 9, 2016 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

“Music really does connect us to the emotional chords of a film…” Wish I said those words. I didn’t. Mr. Mark Battle did. He’s an award winning filmmaker from New Hampshire and he knows his stuff. Or at the very least is filling in those creative edges mighty fine. Every year I see one of Battle’s short films, THE JANITOR or THE CONVICT, at the SNOB Film Festival, I can’t help but say to myself, “Yup, this cat is on a whole other level. Wow.” I’m betting ten years down the road, I’ll be filling my face watching HBO or Cinemax or Showtime, and touch down on a Battle series, something spun out of these early years of Mark’s as a filmmaker in the Granite State. And what is film without music? That’s what we at Soundcheck wanted to know. So we turned to Battle for his take on blending film with music as he...

November’s Reign

By on Nov 3, 2016 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

November can be a beast of a month, a gnarly hole of shrinking light capable of decapitating ones disposition. Like her cranky cousin February, November serves just one purpose: to annoy. There’s simply no bloom in her step, no arch in her heel, just the desperate sound of human bloating, cutting northern winds and dark, cold mornings. But we aren’t going to get anywhere with that kind of attitude, now will we? That’s why this year, instead of cowering in defeat to the month of November, I decided to push back on her by booking a steady diet of good music into the studio. It’s really all I have in defense. A couple months ago, I was enjoying a few pints downtown in Manchester, not necessarily searching for any new music. That night was built for rampant exaggerations and spinning white lies with my compadres. Not introspection. A couple pulls later, I’m thrust out of my juvenile...

The Rebirth of Cool

By on Oct 27, 2016 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Jazz is a tricky mind twist of a musical genre. Never have I been able to get a snug grip on it. And I’ve been trying since I was a kid. Columbia Music Club mailed me my first jazz CD when I was in college at Plymouth State. Of course it was Miles Davis “Birth of the Cool” because that’s the only CD any of us posers had ever heard of by Davis or anyone, really. I lost the CD in a move and retreated back to the Badlands. Then I read Jack Kerouac and I wanted to engage in jazz even more. There was physicality to Jack’s writing; it was aerobic, electric, sliding from one target to another, just like the sounds of jazz. Yet it confused me, like jazz. Scared me even. It was too all over the place, allotting so little time to settle into a flow before being whisked away to a whole other orbit. Hit it and quit it, sure, I get it. But let’s have a moment or two for influence. I still haven’t...

Not Fade Away

By on Oct 12, 2016 in Interviews | 0 comments

Graham Weber is a Texas guy, a songwriter with roots in New Hampshire and he can not only write the heck out of a song, but he’s also a really great interview. Weber and his band the Buffalo Squeeze have a new CD out called “Faded Photos” and its a very interesting piece of work. Locked into the sounds of Texas as a 12 year resident of Austin, Weber, 36, and his terrific band seem to have went in the direction of Morrissey in a dust coat on a few tunes. Songs like “Time” and “Sweet Virginia Brown” are fantastic, odes to the Beatles and the Beach Boys and maybe the Smiths. Other songs like “Talia” and “Ballad of the 04 Lounge” can be both an Irish poem or a shameful, guilty serenade. “Sleep it Off” is just downright gorgeous. How those songs will translate on Saturday night at New England College on Main...

Chase the Music

By on Oct 5, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

I recently received an email from a reader that said, “When I read your column I feel completely lost. Who are these people? What are their sounds?” Valid questions. And I know where you’re at, thinking wise. Maybe feeling a bit beyond the fence, somewhere just out of earshot of that sweet tasting, blood burning music you been reading about…but never seen live. Not a problem. There are ways to remedy this. First things first: Do you own a car? Good, then hit the road. Don’t worry about the cats, the kids, the nine hours of sleep you require or the lack of flat backs in your pocket. Just focus on where you want to marinate in the music for a few hours. Do you like the Lakes Region? The White Mountains? The grizzled streets of Manchester? Maybe your tastes lean toward them border towns where the metal bands bring the shine. These are all viable options, all teeming with great...