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New Music Blog

KAFM New Music Blog

Debuting Now! Diarrhea Planet
June 14, 2016

Seriously, don't quit reading this. I promise, the name isn't indicative of how this band from Tennessee sounds. 
DP doesn't have a lead guitarist. DP doesn't have a lead and a rhythm guitarist.
DP has 4 guitarists that all equally, if you will, shred.

From Nashville, these guys really are harkening back to the days of yore, when guitars mimicked each other constantly, tapping was frequent, and glam rock was a common phrase. Their third album, Turn to Gold, out on Infinity Cat Records, opens with the song "Hardstyle" which is so triumphant it's hard not to stand up and look heroicly off into the distance. Follow that up with "Announcement" which does just that - Here is Diarrhea Planet, in all of their silly named and fantastic guitar glory. Elements of Bruce Spingsteen pop up here and there, thoughts of Styx will hit you on and off, and musing of Blink 182 will breeze through your mind. DP calls their music "pop played through the filter of heavy metal"

When this album crossed my desk I was cautious. The word "diarrhea" has actually never been used in a positive way around me before. But there's a first time for everything, right? I'm glad I gave it a shot, it's most certainly going to the anthem of my summer.

Stereogum said "If Diarrhea Planet don’t blow the f*** up this year, something is seriously wrong with the world" and I'm inclined to agree with them. Here's a link to their mini-write up and Diarrhea Planet's designated single, "Life Pass"
Posted by Tori


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Debuting Now! Awesome Music from Awesome Ladies
June 9, 2016

There is no shortage of perfect harmonies this week in Radioland. 
Amber Arcades (top left), Tegan & Sara (top right), Margaret Glaspy (bottom left) and Britta Phillips (bottom right) flooded our ears this week and it was a soothing, dreamy experience. Let's chat about some ladies, shall we?

Margaret Glaspy:
Can't get over this gal. Her debut album, Emotions and Math, is due out on ATO in September, but lucky for us it's going for radio promotion NOW! Soulful, smokey vocals and creative pop guitar work make her first album one to remember, and makes us even more excited to see what she'll do in the future! But let's not get ahead of ourselves. Check out the title track "Emotions and Math" now and see why Margaret has really captured our attention.

Britta Phillips:
This lady makes you feel like you're either the lead actor in an elegant movie or sitting in the hippest coffee shop, writing the most elegant movie. But don't get ahead of yourself, because Britta has actually be involved in all of those things. In and out of several bands, including Luna and Dean & Britta, since the early 90's, Britta has also been in and written music for movies. Her first solo album, Luck or Magic, really draws you in a cinematic way, with gorgeous vocals and great song structure. 

Amber Arcades:
So beachy and dreamy that you FINALLY understand what "dream pop" is all about. Actually Annelotte de Graaf from the Netherlands, she recorded this album, Fading Lines, in New York, with members of Real Estate and Quilt in the backing band. There's no wonder it feels like it fits right in, it was recorded with "dream pop" royalty! Let her vocals carry you away to the beach or the clouds or wherever it is when you close your eyes. 

Tegan and Sara:
These Canadian sisters are unstoppable. Over the course of their musical career (this is their 7th album) these women have changed their sound a bit, but this album is undoubtably my favorite pop album of the year. If you've recently experience a break-up or are perhaps pondering one, Love You To Death is an album that is crying for your speaker system. 

It's been a gorgeous week for music and a great way to start off summer listening.
Tune in to hear new music from these ladies daily at KAFM!
Posted by Tori
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New 'Smooth Hound Smith' Music Vid... Just In Time For Valentines Day!
February 13, 2016

'Sweet Tennessee Honey', the second release for KAFM favorites Zach Smith and Caitlin Doyle of Nashville based 'Smooth Hound Smith', debuts at number one on KAFM's roots chart.  

And what's not to like?  Dirty country blues, country sway, ballads, sunny syncopation, foot stompin' foot drum, slide guitar, finger picked frets, with a who's who of guest appearances from Natalie Maines, Sarah Jarosz, Noam Pikelny, Eamon McLoughlin, and Jano Rix.

Fast on the heels of the CD release is this video, featuring Zach and Caitlin performing 'Stopgap Woman Blues'.  So grab your cat, dog, significant other, whatever's handy, and turn it up!  

We have got to get these guys to KAFM's 80 seat venue, The Radio Room, and soon!
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Debuting Now! Marlon Williams - Marlon Williams
February 10, 2016

Added this week to the new music wall at KAFM: Marlon Williams, with his self titled album Marlon Williams.
From the first track you think you know what the album will be. "Hello Miss Lonesome" features fast picking,
fast vocals, and an overall Americana, nearly bluegrass feel. It certainly draws you in. Yet as the album goes
along, it gets farther and farther from the norm. "Dark Child," the single from the album, is a deeply heartwrenching
anthem, as is "Strange Things." This track though adds a whole new element to the story telling, combining
perfect volume and tone to accentuate the odd and upsetting feeling of the tale. "I'm Lost Without You" has an almost
50's feel, and "After All" and "Silent Passage" completely capture Americana. This album is varied in so many 
ways but is strung together perfectly by William's rich, expressive vocals.

"Each song is a character,” says Marlon Williams of his self-titled solo debut: a remarkably assured and
diverse nine-track tapestry, united by one of the most versatile and evocative voices you’ll hear this or
any other year. “I don’t really ever sing out of character. Even if it’s a very personal song, once it’s written
it doesn’t belong to me.”

This album absolutely captured me, and I am GREATLY anticipating a tour date in Colorado.

Tori Miner
Music Director
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Charts&Adds: January 30 - February 5
February 10, 2016

So from now on I'm going to be showing your our TOP ADDS as well for each chart!
What's a TOP ADD you say? Here's my spiel: 

Our charts show what we've been playing within the last week, but ADDS are a little different. 
ADDS are things we got in THIS WEEK that have yet to spin, BUT we think they're going to do well, we're excited about them, and
really enjoy them ourselves! So I showed our TOP ADDS this week, and then added some genre info next to each artist. One of the
best ways for artists we care about to do well is to spin them ourselves! Feel free to check them out. I'll be putting them in the studio
today/tomorrow. And remember, if you hear an artist/band during the week that you LOVE, shoot me that email! I'll put it in for consideration as a TOP ADD on the following Tuesday. 

Other question to answer, "What exactly IS Top 200?"

TOP 200 essentially includes all genres of music except some roots. 
It really depends on the routes the artists take with their promoter/management whether or not they'll be eligible for CMJ charts. So
some roots musicians (take Angela Perley for example) show up on CMJ! While others are too independent/focused on other charts to 
want to be on CMJ. That being said, CMJ does stand for COLLEGE MUSIC JOURNALISM, so you can assume that some artists may
not be entirely interested in the stations that contribute. BUT CMJ is widely used by College/Non-Commercial stations across the
country, it is most certainly not just colleges.
So TOP 200 for the most part means just that, the TOP 200 artists spinning at your station. 

Anyway, now that that's out of the way, let's talk spins!


1 SMOOTH HOUND SMITH  Sweet Tennessee Honey  
2 SAM LEWIS  Waiting On You
3 CHRIS ISAAK  First Comes the Night
4 THE WESTIES  West Side Stories
7 JOHNNY RAWLS  Tiger in a Cage
8 BENNY TURNER  When She's Gone
THOMAS  Goin' Home
10 TOMMY Z  Blizzard of Blues

1 MARLON WILLIAMS Marlon Williams Liberation
2 DONKEYS Midnight Palms Easy Sound
3 DR. DOG The Psychedelic Swamp Anti
4 FIELD MUSIC Commontime Memphis Industries
2 STICK FIGURE Set In Stone Ruffwood
3 JAMES HUNTER SIX Hold On! Daptone
4 CHRIS ISAAK First Comes The Night Vanguard
6 THE PINES Above The Prairie Red House
7 RECORD COMPANY Give It Back To You Concord
8 MIRANDA LEE RICHARDS Echoes Of The Dreamtime Invisible Hands
9 PHOTO OPS Vacation Bad Friend
10 SHEARWATER Jet Plane And Oxbow SUB POP
13 ADRIAN YOUNGE Something About April II Linear Labs
14 BEACH HOUSE Thank Your Lucky Stars Sub Pop
15 REED TURNER Native Tongue Self-Released
16 VILLAGERS Where Have You Been All My Life Domino
17 ANE BRUN When I'm Free Balloon Ranger
18 HEY MARSEILLES Hey Marseilles Shanachie
19 CHAIRLIFT Moth Columbia
20 JULIEN BAKER Sprained Ankle 6131
21 NIGHT BEATS Who Sold My Generation Heavenly
22 NAP EYES Thought Rock Fish Scale Paradise of Bachelors
23 JENNY GILLESPIE Cure For Dreaming Narooma
24 ST. GERMAIN St. Germain Nonesuch
25 ELEANOR FRIEDBERGER New View Frenchkiss
26 HIGH HIGHS Cascades Pias
27 DAWN LANDES AND PIERS FACCINI Desert Songs [EP] Six Degrees
28 MONEY Suicide Songs Bella Union
29 BESNARD LAKES A Coliseum Complex Museum Jagjaguwar
30 DAVID BOWIE Blackstar Columbia
2 ADISON EVANS Hero Aditone
3 ERENA TERAKUBO Time For Love Cellar Live
4 HERLIN RILEY New Direction Mack Avenue
5 CHAMPIAN FULTON After Dark Gut String
2 CLAUDETTES No Hotel Yellow Dog
3 BILL FRISELL When You Wish Upon A Star OKeh
4 MILOS Blackbird: The Beatles Album Mercury Classics
6 CYRILLE AIMEE Let's Get Lost Mack Avenue
7 CHRIS CONTE Our Love Will Last Self-Released
8 BLACK VIOLIN Stereotypes Universal
10 CLARE FISCHER Out Of The Blue Self-Released
1 SULTANS OF STRING Subcontinental Drift McKhool
2 SOLAS All These Years Self-Released
3 IBRAHIM MAALOUF Kalthoum Impulse
1 STICK FIGURE Set In Stone Ruffwood
2 BAABA MAAL The Traveler Palm
3 KARAVAN SARAI PROJECT Woven Landscapes Electrofone
4 RAZTERIA Aventurera Asteria
5 ST. GERMAIN St. Germain Nonesuch
6 BLACK MASALA I Love You Madly Self-Released
8 EVA SALINA Lema Lema Vogiton
9 SOAPKILLS The Best Of Soapkills Crammed
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Colorado's own, 'The Lumineers', announce new release!
February 9, 2016

First, The Broncos win Superbowl 50 and now this!?!  It's almost too much.  KAFM programmers supported 'The Lumineers' self titled 2013 debut with airplay very early on, way before they became domestic and international nu-folk sensations.
Guitarist and lead vocalist Wesley Schultz had this to say about the bands new album, 'Cleopatra', that will be released April 8th, their second for Dualtone.  “We took the same approach this time as we did with the first album, recording demos in a small house we rented in the original Denver neighbourhood where we first moved. The record is our greatest hits reflecting what’s happened to us over the last three years. We tried to come up with the best possible version of every song, so we recorded a lot of different iterations, changing the tempos, dressing ’em up, stripping ’em down. It took a lot of work to make them sound so easy. We’re very passionate about the process. It was a very intense and beautiful experience. There was a lot of battling, a lot of tears, but some amazing stuff came out, and at the end, we were much better off. It transformed our relationship.”

Check out the first single, 'Ophelia', below....


....and keep your dial set to 88.1. We'll discover the best new, emerging artists together.
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Debuting Now! Photo Ops - Vacation
February 1, 2016

Sometimes you just fall in love with a record.
That is exactly what happened to me with Photo Ops new album, Vacation. (Bad Friend Records)

This album is deep and dreamy, full of pop melodies The Beach Boys would applaud. In fact, a lot of the production and vocals sound as if they could have come from Brian Wilson himself, which I believe is one of the highest compliments a pop song could receive. The amount of pain channeled through these songs is immense, almost hidden beneath the gorgeous voice of Terry Price. If you simply listen at the surface of this album, you will undoubtably dance around your house or tap your desk, much to the annoyance of your cubicle mate.
But, give it a second listen. Hear Price's words, and not only will you be dancing, you'll be connecting. Understanding. 
This is certainly a body of work that hits the heart, but it's a good pain. It's the feeling of release.
My favorite tracks are "Memories that Glow," "Maybe We'll Change," "You Could Be Great," "I'd Be Dead," and "To Move On."
I honestly could list every song off the album though, it's magical as a complete work. I do love the Indiana/Chicago reference in "You and Me Driving Cross Country." Nothing like an I-65 reference to remind me of my home state and my 3.5 hour monthly trips up and down that interstate.

I've been listening this album on repeat for a full week now and I simply cannot stop. 

This album enters the KAFM on-air studio this week, so tune in for some spins off of Photo Ops - Vacation

Track List:
1. Once Around the Town Square
2. Old Lullabies
3. I'd Be Dead
4. You Could Be Great
5. Memories That Glow
6. Maybe We'll Change
7. You and Me Driving Cross Country
8. Kathleen
9. To Move On
10. It Isn't Mine

Tori Miner
Music Director
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Love 911
January 29, 2016

Valentines Day is for slow motion romps with your bestie through sun drenched fields of clover - silent, heavy lidded stare fests across a candle lit table - heart shaped boxes of chocolates, and .... Oops.
Yeah, those nasty downsides of love.  Luckily, you are not the only one that's had this happen.  There are plenty to comisserate with you... and they have written songs about it! Here are a few flawed\breakup love songs just for you from your friends at KAFM - if you're hurtin'.

In a recent interview, Irish singer and songwriter Mick Lynch said he wrote "In A Flash" for a friend who had recently split up.  Likely story, Mick.  The 3/4 time adds an odd sense of hopelessness and depression.  Lynch's excellent "Aliens, Ghosts and Lovers" was self released in December.


Andy Hackbarth, ex Colorado resident and Radio Room alumni, is on the rebound.  It's fairly obvious that his most recent release, "Panorama Motel", was a cathartic exercise.  Check out the title track below and share Andy's pain.  "Panorama Motel" was self released in November.  


'Nuff said from The Westies Michael McDermott - "I thought of 'Everything Is All I Want For You' as an unapologetic love song of a modern anti-hero. Rife with the depictions of a terribly flawed man, through it all our anti hero wants for nothing else but to dote on his own true love. The video is an homage to one of my favorite films Cinema Paradiso, written and directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. Regardless of the things we've all been through, regardless of all the trials, the temptations, the misfortune, the miscues, the false starts, the misdemeanors, the flawed and the favored, the saintly and the sinners, the broken and defeated, the desperate and the wounded...the last bastion of hope and healing sometimes, is the healing that can be felt, in something as simple...as a kiss."  From the "West Side Stories", released in December.

As we approach Valentines Day, you can expect lots of songs from all of your favorite KAFM programmers about our favorite human endeavor, Love.  Watch this space for more breakup songs to come.
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