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A&R: The Music Submissions

This week we have two bands that have strong female vocal leads. Hopefully, this is a refreshing change after the past few weeks, which have been rather intensely boy-focused if you've been paying attention. It was certainly welcome to find them in the inbox at least.

Lowenbad - Bricks for the Naysayers
Portland band Lowenbad describes themselves as a "beautiful concoction of soul, rock, and hip-hop. Combining rock guitars, soul singing, hip hop loops, politically slanted lyrics and esoteric beats". The beautiful part clearly comes from lead vocalist Holly Cole, whose sultry voice lends the "soul singing" aspect that does sound lovely over the hip hop beats. Every once in a while, the guitars and simple drum beats veer into Evanescence territory, which is too bad since the songs where the band leaves thing a bit more "raw" are the strongest. Cole clearly has the ability to deliver a tune, which lends an interest and complexity to the music that is lacking in many of the other elements.

Sounds Like:
For some reason, Dido. Maybe before she went solo.
Listen to: Another Measure, Bricks

Hey Young Believer- Invisible by Day
I am completely willing to forgive local band Hey Young Believer for their lack of complexity. Their new album is chock full of the kind of fun music that cute people will be bounce-dancing around to at live shows. Vocalist Lilly Wolfson sounds lovely on each and every track, but most of the time her vocals are so much the focus that it is hard to tell (or care) who and what is doing the backing music. Songs like "Yellow Roman Candles" show the band stretching its instrumental legs a bit more, and is one of the more agreeable on the album. I hope that future releases will showcase the obvious skill of this band with a little bit more risk-taking, maybe something weird. Bay Area kids can and should check them out Monday November 9 at Tiny Antennae Have Large Receptors.

Sounds Like: Letters to Cleo
Listen To: Playing the Grand Design, Walking Over You

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