The Great American Novel is a powerhouse rock band from homefield Brooklyn. The chorus’ consist of some of the most single handedly catchy and melodic lines, dredging up a deep well of influencers. Well, ‘My Body is Dumb‘ is no different, in fact it’s the track that finally convinced me of their “powerhouse” status- leading up to the release of their next LP, slotted for any day now (this spring). [Free Download] @Dingusonmusic
BROOKLYN IS HOME TO THOUSANDS OF DIY BANDS, I’D BET I’M NOT EXAGGERATING. THE CYCLE CONTINUES AS BAND AFTER BAND BEGS FOR AN AUDIENCE, PLAYING EVERY WEEKEND, SHOOTING FOR STARDOM. THE HONEST TRUTH IS THAT A CITY WITH SO MUCH TO OFFER MAKES FOR A HARD SELL. BUT, ONE LITTLE STUDIO AT THE SOUTHERN TIP OF PROSPECT HAS REVITALIZED THE SCENE AND AMASSED A FOLLOWING UNLIKE ANY COLLECTIVE HAS SEEN IN YEARS. THE SHOWS ARE PACKED, THE RECORDINGS ARE UNIQUE AND FROM A MORE GRAND PERSPECTIVE, THE PHILOSOPHY IS UNDENIABLE.
LOCAL HEROES: FRONTED BY DIY PIONEER, OLIVER IGNATIUS, ONE OF BROOKLYN’S MOST INSTRUMENTALLY HONEST BANDS HAS PLANTED THE SEED FOR FOLLOWERS ALONG THE FAMILY. HIS STUDIO, MAMA COCO’S FUNKY KITCHEN, IS A TESTAMENT TO QUALITY CONTROL WITHIN THE DIY SCENE. RUN BY IGNATIUS, THE STUDIO HAS HAND SELECTED THE PERFORMERS INCLUDED IN “THE FAMILY” AND REFINED A SOUND THROUGH THEIR OWN BAND- GHOST PAL.
Ghost Pal was the very first DIY band I ever knew besides my own. In a long conversation, meeting Ignatius for the first time as introduced by Mark Fletcher, Oliver outlined principles for home recording that sparked the original cravings which later became Dingus. It was in this singular moment that I realized there was a whole world uploading self-published music to the internet for mass consumption- there just wasn’t any mass. So, we set out to create it. We organized our first show, No More Love and opened the blog. The hunt had begun and for the next year and a half, the daily grind of sifting through Bandcamp would become our reality.
At the time, Ghost Pal was just a bedroom project, recorded purely by Ignatius and releasing in a singles format for nearly a year. ’Space Race’ was my introduction and instantly my ears were hooked. I immediately knew that I was staring a genius in the face- and that’s a rare honor. Giving sage-like advise in musical form, Ghost Pal moved on to release a long line of tracks that would eventually be compiled into GHOST PAL ONE and GHOST PAL TWO. The presentation was flawless- the game played perfectly as blogs clamored to write up every individual track.
The bands first multitrack release was the Extended Family EP which marked the conception of the Ghost Pal we know today, the Ghost Pal that gave us Nathan Jones is Dead, the most flawless concept album that exists within the DIY, period. That is, a large format, instrumentally diverse band that takes every opportunity to pull friends onto stage for long jams, masks their extreme intelligence within the confetti popping, drunkard lead party that they call home. It really was and always is a fucking party, and really the article should end here- followed by a series of players to get the point across:
Today I sit here. It is noon. Sasha Geffen is landing from Chicago and Freecandy is gearing up. In twelve hours- with a joint in hand, I will turn twenty four. Today, tonight we re-invent events. We bring back the Blue Blood and Fresh Arrest records for those who missed the early days. The days when a man asked not what his band could do for him, but what he could do for his band. But least important of all is the fact that I’ve been putting one foot in front of the other for twenty four short years. Short they are, when you do what you love- and goddamn do I love Dingus and all it stands for in audio culture.
God Save MCFK by Ghost Pal (Brooklyn, New York) *
Tonight we pay our respects to some of the greats- pioneers; talent filled faces that pour their hearts into your earbuds so that morning commute, that long drive, that dark night is consoled. God Save MCFK. God save us all. This one’s for the bands busting out new material: The Gradients, Ghost Pal, Happy Lives, Lil Kids, & Napoleon. Some of my best friends, some of my best enemies- all drunk tonight, together, for the start of something new.
Now a toast. To a year and a half of bare knuckle boxing in preparation for the title fight. To the music we grew up with, the music we challenge. We’re here to represent you and your heart- so send us your songs. [Facebook Event/RSVP] @Dingusonmusic
I sure as hell wasn’t expecting it. Seems like only last month that The Harmonica Lewinskies were releasing Octopus Wall Street. But, as I was pleasantly informed this past weekend, the supergroup (one that often pulls members from Ghost Pal, Sons of an Illustrious Father and The Great American Novel among others) has released a follow-up EP, Salad Days. Leading off with ‘The Ghost Pal Song’, a track that literally reprises melodies from the brother band, the album shows a funky version of the band that slides smoothly in opposition to the bands powerhouse, July release. [Free Download] @Dingusonmusic
Brooklyn DIY recording outlet Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen has been busy establishing themselves as a staple in the underground music scene and with the release of their latest compilation Section 3 they are solidifying that title just a little more. An ambitious 23-song project all recorded at Mama Coco’s with in-house producer Oliver Ignatius, the album is a diverse collection of local NYC artists coming together to contribute their songs to a rad lineup. With standout tracks from The Dough Rollers, Grand Rapids, and Goodman, anyone stumbling on this release is bound to find a few tracks (or many) that they can dig on. [Free download] @thinknotsleep
In this collection of bittersweet, indie pop gems, the twenty-two year old Michael Goodman has succinctly captured the realities of a romance–all the regrets and insecurities, which are of course half the fun, and still a hope for a better next morning. The songs are sweetly earnest and never precious. At their center is Goodman himself in meticulous arrangements, sparking harmonies and lyrics reminiscent of at least one of my previous summers. It’s all there: the worthy intentions towards only halfhearted lovers, grand plans made and then dashed, and the instant and incessant disappointment. You can’t help root for our hapless, if sympathetic hero, and when he’s let down by yet another obsession, you’ll want to be there, listening to his sad song. In music, as in love, Goodman is an idealist, though he seems to realize that he is better adept to the prior, not that this will ever discourage him. Let’s not call Goodman naive. He knows that while what we want is never completely clear, there’s not a chance we won’t be up all night talking our way through it anyway. @EmilioHerce
Tonight marks the twelfth Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen Get Down- a series of shows and parties featuring bands exclusively from the label. That being said, Dingus and The Snake could not be happier to be involved in the planning. This time, the group is showcasing The Harmonica Lewinskies (who are always a riot), The Graveyard Kids (who have put out one of the most satisfying releases on the label), Oh! My Blackbird (a long time Dingus favorite) and Newport Reds (at the experimental liberties of Mark Fletcher). We’re proud to host it at one of Brooklyn’s newest, and if I do say so myself, finest DIY establishments, Muchmore’s (on the corner of N.9th and Havemeyer) and are looking forward to seeing all of your smiling faces fully recovered from this devastating storm. [Facebook Event] @Dingusonmusic
For those of you who have been following us for the past year, this is the re-birth of The Meme Movement, which was 3 years ago, a design service. Join us this weekend in celebrating life. It’s always free, it’s always all ages. Come early for happy hour, stay late for the tentatively scheduled orgy- drink beer cause you can and get down with some of the most authentic DIY music that this fine, fine piece of ass we call a city has. [Facebook Event] @Dingusonmusic
+ TONIGHT: Join the crew from A Mini Tribe for what is always a party, and sometimes a riot, at Muchmore’s “Back to School” [Facebook Event]
“We recorded this song in tribute to our fallen hero, Bill Doss, co-founder of Elephant 6 and co-frontman of The Olivia Tremor Control.
Members of the All-About, Dr. Skinnybones, Ghost Pal, the Great American Novel, the Harmonica Lewinskies and the Jean Jackets came by to make the recording.
We are aware that “The Opera House” was originally sung by Will Cullen Hart. The last time we saw Bill Doss live was earlier this year, and the amount of energy, passion and pure love that emanated from him as he howled this song with the rest of the band still stands in all of our minds.” - Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen
Over the past two weeks, I’ve been working hard to bring our neighborhood some of my favorite line ups as part of the free DIY show series organized with The Snake. We held three amazing parties in just fourteen days: Forbidden Fruit, 302A and This is Not a Cult. Each one a defining moment. Since the birth of Dingus’ digital presence, live shows have been a key way to connect directly and demonstrate the social finness of the global DIY community. Already we’ve booked bands from distant continents and packed venues all around the city- achievements otherwise impossible if not for your support.
Forbidden Fruit saw five outstanding acts beginning with Australian singer/song-writer Lisa Salvo. After a delicate set from Wintergreen, Hubbell Mountain temporarily stole the spotlight as they demonstrated why their particular 4-piece aesthetic is king. No Shoes brought their A-game as we’ve all come to expect and Lil Kids closed us out with a very real performance.
302A, a party named discreetly after a loft that I lived in during my early days in Brooklyn began with a surprise performance from local favorites Jangula and continued forcefully with Napoleon and Dances. Il Abanico, a band that’s recently grabbed the spotlight within the DIY community, put on a closing performance that stunned audiences as listeners found themselves hearing completely re-worked tracks. Seeing the group transform all their original material live (most lovably through intense drum syncopation) was a rare treat.
This Saturday is Sour Stash, the Jean Jackets record release party. Then, we take a week off to focus on getting our digital content back in groove. The event, as always, is completely free and will be held at Muchmore’s (on the corner of North 9th and Havemeyer in North Williamsburg). Headlining, Harvey Eyeballs is easily one of the most intriguing acts I’ve come across in my findings; and with Gabe Wax’s (of Trout Recording) Carroll and Alfonso Velez opening the night, the show will make for a great Saturday night watering hole. Wont you join us for a few beers? [Facebook Event] @Dingusonmusic
With technology growing exponentially, personal computing is challenging the recording business and the internet is challenging the publishing business. Now more than ever, we see the pool of music and design growing deeper. But as always, the more music there is, the harder it is to find what really matters.
Dingus is dedicated to the search. It's here, on this humble blog that we shed light on bedroom artists in their most defining moments. If you want what's popular today, Dingus is not the blog for you. But, if you want what's fringe, pure and passionate then you've somehow landed on the right URL. So check back daily and enjoy your fellow peers' endeavors.
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