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Schwindy's Indie Music Spotlight on

Schwindy's Indie Music Spotlight on The Madeira and Threesome

Loyal reader, you are about to read something unprecedented for me. No, I am not going to recount for you how I jumped a pennyfarthing over six Nash Ramblers through a flaming hoop and into a kiddie pool filled with lime gelatin. Rather, I am including two bands in the spotlight this week. OK, it's not earth-shattering, but I didn't promise earth-shattering. It made sense to review these two bands in the same edition of the spotlight because both are instrumental surf bands on the same label (Double Crown).

Now, if you listen to surf music at all, you know what you're getting: music that is centered around some heavy-duty reverb guitar. These bands both deliver that in spades although these are not the sort of band that make you want to jump in your Woody and catch some tasty waves while the Betties play volleyball on the beach.

The best way I can think to describe The Madeira is to explain what would be the perfect setting to listen to it. First off, the album is called Tribal Fires, so you already get the idea that this isn't about sunny days at the beach. The ideal setting for this is a secluded beach at night with a bonfire going and tiki torches stuck into the sand. A good example of this is "Tribal Fury," which reminds me quite a bit of Dick Dale's Tribal Thunder album. Maybe an even better example of that secluded beach at night feel is "Jungle Drums". When you listen to this, t's real easy to imagine sitting by a bonfire with a rum drink as you watche the waves roll in under the moon.

It took a while before I figured out why Threesome sounds familiar. The first song has a familiar theme for surf songs: cars - specifically car chases. That's not necessarily why the band sounds familiar. The more I listened the more I realized that Threesome reminds me of Man or Astro-man? It's not quite as overtly spacy as Man or Astro-man? but it's there. "Eddie Would Go!" is a great example of how this band works the spacy element into its sound. "Interstellar Hardrive" is another very good example of the spacy aspect of this band.

If you are a fan of instrumental surf rock, you cannot go wrong with either of these albums. Both provide different spins on a classic genre that doesn't get nearly enough attention.

-Gary Schwind

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