Music

Toby Hay

An improvised piece of music, for the sunrise, or sunset.

They are all one take performances, the sun doesn’t get a second take.

Originally released as a series of youtube episodes, recorded at different locations near my home during the lockdown of 2020.

released June 19, 2020

All music by Toby Hay
Mastered by Tim Hay

Circus Trees

This album hits a little closer to home than anything else we’ve ever written. It comes from the heart and it is personal and emotional and riddled with doubt and fear and anger and confusion. the songs on this album are much more personal than the last, where we focused on themes of love and loss in the abstract. This album reflects more introspection, and comes from the emotions felt personally from one or more members of the band, based on events that naturally happen growing up. Still love and loss and sadness, but much less distant to us as individual human beings. All of the songs were written in my room like always but it was different this time round. I reflected on my past and events that have presented themselves throughout my life, instead of writing songs that didn’t necessarily have anything to do with me. For a while each song was just imagined in my head until I was able to bring them to the rest of the band. We built these songs up from the ground and practiced and rearranged and changed day and night until we felt comfortable that the songs encapsulated everything we were trying to get across.

–Fin

released August 14, 2020

Circus Trees Delusions

Following more than three sharply focused years of writing, performing, and paying their dues with seemingly endless support for other artists, the Marlborough, MA slowcore/shoegaze trio Circus Trees are releasing their debut full-length, a rare album that stands as both the sum of its parts and something representative of so much more. In a vacuum, “Delusions” is a striking collection of powerful, focused, emotionally wrenching songs that balance their soft-loud dynamic with a skillful ear and keen emphasis on visceral impact. But look to the peripheries and you’ll find so much of what we all need to support about independent music and, beyond that, the role of family in the development of artists.

It’s easy to look to the ages of the McCarthy sisters that comprise Circus Trees – and indeed it is unique to see three teenagers creating music this mature – and spend all your time lauding that individual aspect. However, on a base conceptual level, Circus Trees is an impressive demonstration of how a strong family backbone can facilitate the blossoming of creative confidence and output. Delusions is both a statement and a culmination, an album where the content and the story are inextricable, a wildly impressive collection whose qualities are indicative of being given the space and strength and to develop without a hint of inhibition.

The album-opening lead single “Wasted Air” serves notice of the growth that’[s taken place over the past three years. Moving away from the sludgy trudge of their early compositions, “Wasted Air” moves with a kind of desperate immediacy, a deft combination of early-2000’s emo stylings, post-hardcore aggression and captivating vocal hooks. Despite having planted their feet squarely in the shoegaze realm, there is none of the modesty typically attributed to the vocalists of that genre; Finola McCarthy has stepped out from behind her amps on Delusions and left behind any uncertainty that may have remained in her voice on earlier material. What a difference even just a year makes. She sounds like an entirely new frontwoman on this record; the power and clarity of her voice have taken a dramatic step into the forefront. Even at such a young age, she is a woman who knows what she wants to say, and now she knows exactly how to say it. The ability to put forth a loud and guttural musical performance was never in question with Circus Trees, but Finola’s determined and confident performance is a thread that ties it all together.

This is not to diminish the roles of the remaining two sisters. The drumming of Giuliana McCarthy that at times took a backseat to the amp assault of initial recordings has taken on a far more significant role, both in terms of her ability to understand when not to overplay and to complement what’s happening around her, as well as the frequency with which she acts as the essential forward propulsion for songs. Edmee McCarthy has moved off of the keys onto full-time bass, and the impact on the low end is undeniable – her presence on Delusions in many ways is the key component in the elevation of this record above everything the band has released previously.

There is a tendency when talking about a band like Circus Trees to want to avoid the ages of the performers or other peripheral elements. It can feel opportunistic to capitalize on these things, and one worries that it suggests the music cannot stand on its own without the story. This is a rare example where everything is essential, and every part of the story connects in a meaningful way. Would Delusions still be a great album if it were written by people in their twenties? Would Delusions still be a great album if it were written by men? (If only we lived in a world where such questions were never asked…) Honestly, yes, it would. It’s a punch in the gut, a tear in the eye, a lump in the throat, an inspiration in the heart, and those feelings can’t be fabricated. This album has value in every sense of the term. But to ignore its roots is to ignore what those roots represent to so many on the listening end. The fact that this album was written by teenagers matters. That it was written by teenage girls matters. That its creation was facilitated by a family unit that far exceeds the usual expectations for parental and sibling support matters. That this youthful band understands the importance of supporting other artists in their local scene and beyond matters. That older bands like Caspian have seen Circus Trees and been inspired to back them in whatever ways they’re able matters. It all matters, and it matters most because the album is so good. Its quality should serve as an inspiration for every teenager, every girl, every family, every artist.

We live in a dark, cynical, uncertain, troubling world that’s seemingly full of people trying to hold others back. You can make the argument that there are few things we need more right now than bands like Circus Trees. We need something to feel good about, damnit, and it’s hard to imagine anything easier to feel good about than this band. Go out, support, feel good, feel sad, feel togetherness, feel something. Then take it back with you, give it to others, and set the world straight, one song at a time.

David Zeidler
Young Epoch PR

The Suitcase Brothers

released December 28, 2015

Santos Puertas – Vocals, guitars
Victor Puertas – Vocals, Piano, harmonica

Jerry Portnoy – Harmonica
Paul Oscher – Slide Guitar
Dave Biller – Guitar
Alberto Telo – Drums
Eric Przygocki – Upright Bass

Produced by The Suitcase Brothers

Engineered and Mixed by Mike Mariconda & Ryan Anderson at Active Sound Recording Studio. Austin, TX USA

Mastered by Victor Garcia at Ultramarinos Costa Brava SPAIN

Santos and Victor Puertas perpetuate through their music, the origin of the genre and make us fall in love deeply with it. Their conviction, along with the love of two brothers to this genre, have led them to an extensive training, which enables them to offer pure blues. Making you smell the Delta and transporting you to the Mississippi cotton fields while listening.

King Buffalo

Written and recorded by King Buffalo in Rochester, NY at the Main Street Armory in December of 2019 & January 2020

All arrangements by King Buffalo (c) 2019
Produced & Engineered by Sean McVay
Mixed by Grant Husselman
Mastered by Bernie Matthews
Artwork by Ryan T. Hancock
Cover Fonts by Mike Turzanski
Album Layout by Scott Donaldson

released March 20, 2020

“King Buffalo is a psychedelic trio in the classic format, whose expansive and thunderous music is a powerful concoction of heavy psych, blues, and stoner rock. Texturally rich and oozing with psychedelic goodness, yet honed and driving in the next blink of an eye. Their efforts coupled with their impressive live show, quickly gained them an international audience.” – Sludgelord

Camille Bénâtre

En collaboration avec Les disques Woody
lesdisqueswoody.bandcamp.com

Écrit, enregistré et produit par Camille Bénâtre
(sauf “Les Miroirs dans la Boue” version originale de William Sheller)
Mixé par Thomas Juvé à L’Alimentation Studio (Toulouse)
Masterisé par Steve Ziane
Visuel conçu par Manon Raupp & Camille Bénâtre
Promo : Nicolas Favier / La Centrifugeuse

Auteur-compositeur, folksinger, influencé autant par William Sheller que par Mark Kozelek ou Richard Hawley, Camille Bénâtre lorgne vers les mélodies anglo-saxonnes dans la langue de Barbara. Après une dizaine d’années en duo folk familial avec sa soeur dans Alone With Everybody (tournées aux Etats-Unis, Belgique, Suisse Suède, Angleterre), et quand il n’est pas en studio ou en tournée avec Laure Briard, il s’épanouit en son nom, en solo.

Après “Nos Rendez-vous Manqués” (2015) et “Ilôt de Consolation” (2017) enregistrés dans sous sous-sol toulousain et publiés sur La Souterraine (et ce dernier en version cassette chez nous), ce nouveau chapitre “Après le Soir” lorgne clairement du côté nord ouest américain (Elliott Smith, M.Ward, Fleet Foxes).

released June 12, 2020

Coaster

released March 8, 2019

matt kissinger – vox/guitar
seth engel – guitar/vox
dillon kelley – bass
marcus nuccio – drums, percussion

Recorded and Mixed 8/11-12 by Seth Engel @ Pallet Sound
Mastered by Carl Saff
Photo by Natalie Escobedo

Clive Carroll

Born in England, Clive began his musical journey in Chelmsford, Essex. His parents had a taste for American country and old time music and it wasn’t long before Clive was playing in the family band on a homemade banjo. By his early teens, guitar in hand, Clive was traversing the worlds of soul, pop, funk, and traditional Irish music, balancing his affinity for Slayer with the etudes of Tárrega. This breadth of musical curiosity was to become one of his strengths; even as a child Clive was as comfortable accompanying a group of folk singers as he was jamming along to Nirvana or performing standards with the Essex Youth Orchestra.

Clive went on to earn a 1st Class Honours Degree in Composition and Guitar from the famed Trinity College of Music in London, all the while balancing his classical work with forays into the world of the steel string guitar. By the time he graduated from Trinity, Clive had not only penned orchestral works, he had written an album’s worth of solo acoustic guitar music. A chance meeting with English guitar legend John Renbourn proved the catalyst for Clive’s debut album, “Sixth Sense”, which Renbourn deemed “a milestone in the journey of the steel-string guitar”. He subsequently took Clive on the road with him and the pair toured North America and Europe together, launching Clive’s solo performing career.
Since then, Clive has established himself as one of the world’s premier acoustic guitar players. He has toured across Europe, Australia, the Middle East and North America, garnering praise for his sublime performances of everything from 16th and 17th century lute music to Jazz standards, Blues, Irish reels and his own groundbreaking compositions. Lauded guitarist Tommy Emmanuel has also taken Clive on the road, and similar nods to Clive’s musicianship have been given by everyone from classical guitarist John Williams to Madonna, Guy Ritchie, Michelin award-winning chef Jean-Christophe Novelli, and the Sultanate of Oman.
To date, Clive has released four solo albums; “Sixth Sense”, “The Red Guitar” (which Tommy Emmanuel cites as one of his desert island discs!), “Life in Colour” and “The Furthest Tree”. Clive has also written music for television and film, most notably composing the music for the film “Driving Lessons”, which features Julie Walters and Rupert Grint of Harry Potter fame.
Clive newest CD, “The Furthest Tree”, was released in May 2016 and is already being hailed as some of his finest work to date.