Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Tess In Venice - "Show Me Summer" Is Pop Induced, Sparkly and Teary At The Same Time

Oh so cool to hear an early peek from Tess In Venice (Tess Cunningham) - in her new video release for "Show Me Summer" shot in Australia, Ireland and London. The single's official release is September 1st via Midnight Cat Records.

This particular track veers into a more pop vein than Once Upon A Time (that felt more like 90's post rock and darker) that I reported on last year.

I have always liked that Tess explores different flavors to her art and Show Me Summer has a strong free pop framework and (dare I say) I thought a bit of early, early Madonna (my favorite Madonna) because it doesn't feel over thought just care free, dreamy and, yes, with a patina of somberness too like the summer sway is peppered with pieces of a broken heart. Lovely stuff. I love this song.
Robb Donker


Monday, August 21, 2017

Happy Eclipse Days and I Apologize For....

WHOA! Just wanted to say "Happy Eclipse Day" and please be careful especially with all the wee little ones who might not have their glasses on properly and damage there eyes.

Big apologies to those submissions that are stacked on my virtual table and in dire need of attention. There are many and my blog duties have taken a bit of a back seat as I am currently working on 3 new songs for the upcoming "Donker" EP (Age of Dinosaurs) due out December 1st. Apart from that writing some pieces for my Medium Page and curating for the Podcast. This while juggling a very busy day job and personal life too.

Yes, not enough hours in the day. I was thinking about that when in the middle of the day I was sawing up a couch in the garage that no one will take and has a date for the dumpster. What a life, huh??

I posted an incomplete song on the AP Facebook page- check it out-- Will it make the EP cut? I haven't decided, it sure is a bit different for me. Some info on the post about how I ended up putting images from the Virgin Suicides with it.

Thanks for all you who are supporting the blog, the podcast and my music.
Love you-



Monday, August 14, 2017

American Pancake Radioshow PODCAST # 8: Athen's Pop Fest and Juggling Too Many Balls

It has been a couple of weeks since the last Podcast as my busy life seems to have gotten even more busy. It has been a combination of longer hours at the proverbial day job that can spill over into less time to work on songs for the new Donker EP set to drop before Christmas which then spills over into not keeping up with submissions to this here blog which then spill over into certain such home life chores as in taking care of certain car repairs to purchases that are time sensitive for recording Daws upgrades to taking care of actual important Governmental concerns to then circle back around to delaying some day job work thingies that I could better do at home!  A vicious revolving circle to time death. And time is so fleeting as it is. But enough complaining.

On to the Podcast. On the heals of seeing Blondie, Garbage and Deep Valley several days ago at Chastain Park Amphitheatre I also attended DAY 3 of the Athen's Pop Fest which is just a cool event in a very cool town. When you are in Athen's you must visit and purchase vinyl over at Wuxtry Records which has been helping to shape the music scene since 1976 and was voted in the top 25 of the best record stores in the country by Rolling Stone magazine. Grabbed great drinks and food at the Globe, got literally soaked to the bone by a typical Georgia torrential rain downpour so much so that I had to change clothes and missed the first band and then finally got over the historic iconic Georgia Theatre that quickly became my favorite venue of it's size ever. I also feature the luscious psych rock of Leaf, the amazing deep hooks and narrative of Sarah Bethe Nelson, the Indie pop prowess of Real Estate and a big fat shameless plug for some of my musical stuff!

Seeing Superchunk, meeting Kelly Deal and more-- so awesome. Check out PODCAST #8- (great for listening at work too!!)
Robb Donker

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Canto- "Say It Out LOUD" Dark Surf Psych Rock contains Emotional Magic

Say It Out Loud- those words conjure up many things steeped in emotional magic. Like the mere saying of something like "I love you" or "I will drive your sister to San Francisco" will make it set in stone, will make your intentions so real that if you are not telling the truth dire things can happen. It also makes me think of horror movies when the utterance of something will bring dark consequences. And, now it makes me think of Canto, three brothers out of Pasadena, California who are in sync when it come to their potent dark surf / psych rock. Say It Out Loud is from their latest EP release called Limbs.

Seamus (lead vocals/ guitar), David (drums) and Aidan (bass) have been making music together for years. Limbs has different flavors but they all possess pearly guitar, lushs bass runs and evocative vocals. Sad Dreams is appropriately dream with the guitar lines floating so cooly, Violence is so jaggedly sharp and edgy, I'll Never Know is sultry in it's rock persona and Say It Out Loud is, well, you decide for yourself. Look for Canto on tour this month and you can learn more about them at Cantoband.com.

Robb Donker

Friday, August 4, 2017

BANDCAMP Will Donate 100% of Sales to The Transgender Law Center This Friday, Aug 4th- I Invite All Bandcamp Artists To Double Down This Friday


As a new member of the Bandcamp family I am so incredibly proud of Bandcamp as a company when they announced that this FRIDAY, yes, this FRIDAY Aug 4th Bandcamp will be donating 100% of their share of every sale made. So this is a grand opportunity to support artists whom you love as well as the Transgender Law Center (you can read more about their important mission below). I encourage Bandcamp artists to double down on Friday by donating their share of any sale of any specific song or album of theirs. To do my part I will give 100% of any Bandcamp revenue of Shadow Box Butterfly, a song dedicated to those in the LGBT community and anyone else who is fighting to be their true-self in a world that can sometimes not be so accepting of who they are, to the Transgender Law Center not only on Friday but for the entire month of August. I will also give 50% of the sale of my album Dying Star to the cause as well for the entire month of August. I encourage YOU to do the same. Please check out the important information in the Bandcamp Press Release Below.


Bandcamp is a platform for artistic expression, and all manner of variance in experience and identity, including gender and sexuality, is welcome here. We support our LGBT+ users and staff, and we stand against any person or group that would see them further marginalized. This includes the current U.S. administration, and its recent capricious declaration that transgender troops will no longer be able to serve in the military. That this announcement was motivated in part to help fund the border wall exposes it as part of the administration’s cynical, discriminatory agenda.
In response, we will be donating 100% of our share of every sale on Friday, August 4th (from midnight to midnight Pacific Time) to the Transgender Law Center, a nonprofit organization that works tirelessly to change law, policy, and culture for the more equitable. TLC does critical policy advocacy and litigation on multiple fronts, fights for healthcare for trans veterans, defends incarcerated trans people from abuse in prisons and detention centers, supports trans immigrants, and helps trans youth tell their stories and build communities.
When an Executive Order was issued earlier this year barring immigrants and refugees from seven Middle Eastern countries from entering the United States, we held a wildly successful fundraiser for the ACLU. We hope you’ll join us in now doing the same in support of trans rights. To participate as a fan, simply purchase music through Bandcamp on Friday and we’ll donate our share of the sale to TLC. To participate as an artist or label, send some or all of your share of Friday’s sales directly to TLC here, and let us know your plan in the comments below so that we can help spread the word. Thank you!
—Bandcamp Staff

Thursday, August 3, 2017

AP Song of the Day: Dylan Hicks: Days of Dayton, Nights of Columbus - Listen to his Beautifully Slightly Bent Stories

Dylan Hicks hails out of Minneapolis where he hangs with his beautiful wife and child while putting his illustrious and slightly bent thoughts down or paper. Those thoughts eventually become novels, or fiction pieces / essays for numerous periodicals such as the Village Voice, the New York Times, New England Review, the Guardian and more and many of his thoughts become immortal lyrics in his songs that are too quite illustrious and slightly bent.

Dylan has a new album called Ad Out coming out in the fall (more on that in subsequent posts) but for now fall into his beautiful funk and listen to the song of the day: Days of Dayton, Nights of Columbus from his album Dylan Hicks Sings Bolling Greene. After you hear the song of the day go to his Bandcamp here and push play on the entire album. It goes down easy and afterward you will be glad you listened to Hick's stories.
Robb Donker

Side Notes: Vocally Dylan reminds me a bit of Ryan Sambol (formerly of the Strange Boys)

Monday, July 31, 2017

AP- Song of The Day - "Bad Machine" by Elastic Sheep

from the Elastic Sheep Facebook Page
Dreamy Irish self described cine pop band Elastic Sheep has been on the periphery of my soundscape for a while but I haven't fully dived in. From what I have heard I need to as their blend of noise pop meets ambient rock meets arena rock meets dream pop is so inviting. Their sound is pretty, dramatic and envelopes slowly until you are immersed in the dynamic sonic fray. When I first heard the track Bad Machine I thought of Beach House on acid.

-Robb Donker

Sunday, July 30, 2017

The Wild Honey Pie Presents: WELCOME CAMPERS!!! Get Your Tickets and Bug Spray!!

Summer Camp like as in a real summer camp. My memories are of 6th grade summer camp which was mandatory and which was part fun and part terrifying for a kid like me who had not really been away from my family. NOW this camp put on by The Wild Honey Pie sound amazing! I usually just don't paste up press releases but this info is just to precise to get wrong and I want to serve it up right so you can get your tickets and bug spray ready.
Robb Donker

(Brooklyn, NY) (Brooklyn, NY) The music and event curators at The Wild Honey Pie are preparing to host their celebrated, 5th annual Welcome Campers experience this upcoming September 8th through the 10th. Hailed as one of the most influential music blogs in the world, The Wild Honey Pie continues to transcended beyond the conventions of the traditional online site with a forward thinking approach to artfully executed video content and unique, intimate and thoughtfully crafted events with Welcome Campers serving as its flagship.

Returning to Camp Lenox in Western Massachusetts, Welcome Campers is a one-of-a-kind experience, eschewing the large, modern music festival model for a weekend of spotlight performances amidst an array of outdoor activities reminiscent of summers past.

Weekend passes include free meals (plus access to food trucks), lodging, musical performances around camp and summer camp activities such as kayaking, arts and crafts, tennis, nature hikes, campfires, volleyball, basketball, kickball and more.

Be on the lookout for more announcements ahead of Welcome Campers 2017.

Partner sponsors for Welcome Campers 2017 include Way Better Snacks and AdHoc.

The Wild Honey Pie links:

Welcome Campers tickets:

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Together Pangea - "Money On It" - Metamorphosize Once Again

I can feel it, I really can. Southern California's Together Pangea are on the cusp. They have been there before but now it feels more real like they are moments away from blowing up. It could be a song or two gracing a feature film (their song "Sick Shit" soundtracked a trailer for HBO's Animals), or an appearance on James Corden or some other defining moment but it will be something. Good for them. I have watched then from afar and sometimes from very close having shot numerous videos of their live shows since 2009. I have reveled in their auditory exorcisms especially the punk juggernaut Living Dummy been quietly moved by their Killer Dreams EP and simply blown away by the song Offer from 2014's Badillac. At the core of Together Pangea are William Keegan's songwriting and sandpaper voice that can be potently snarky but imbued with a deep vulnerability as well.

Their latest public offering, "Money On It", the second track off of their forthcoming record Bulls and Roosters continues the band's metamorphosis. The (dare I say) safer sound works. When I first heard it I actually thought of Kevin Morby a bit. Maybe it was the classic late 60's soul groove or the downbeat strums. Keegan's vocals feel timeless here. The guitar licks that ghost the vocals are pretty damn sweet. They have come a long way from their cum stained punk bravado of years ago but the thing with Keegan and the boys is that they can shift and move quite effortlessly between all their colors and it's all fucking beautiful.
Robb Donker

Friday, July 28, 2017

Ready For The Eclipse, Missing My Beard, Podcast #7, Fond and Plastic Fantastic, Trump Implosion

As I sit eating Cornflakes at 5:30 this morning I am contemplating the future. I am dedicating my cynical self to be positive about the future. The Trump administration is imploding in front of our (the world's) eyes and it isn't even fun to watch. It is downright painful. I am reminded of the psychologists saying that sometimes people who are in a cycle of self destruction sometimes have to hit rock bottom in order to save themselves. I figure maybe that is what the US government is doing. I think things will be ok.

Positive vibes. I am sending them and soaking in them as much as I can lately. As you face challenges and your loved ones endure pain and push through the pain to find those opportunities and dream makers out in the world remember that you have to fail many times over before you succeed. It is just part of the journey and as long as your loved ones give you hugs and kisses and support then you can make it. I know this to be true.

In my world of music and music blogging and such Podcast #7 is up. I hope you check it out and also search for Tuckshop Community Radio. Jack Bacon runs such a cool podcast and has many exciting things in the works including a regular stint on London Radio. How cool is that. I still contribute to both and feel so fortunate that he allows me to invade the program with my song suggestions and babbling talk. Going to be having some exciting things in store for Podcast #8 too.

I just released a single on Bandcamp. A-side is FOND and the B-side is PLASTIC FANTASTIC. Both songs are special to me and full of personal stories. It feels good to get them out and I included them as bonus tracks on the Dying Star album which is cool because now I feel like it is a full fledged ten song album (as opposed to an EP).

The future is today. As soon as a second approaches we experience it and it becomes a memory. Time does move incredibly fast when you think about it. As I get older I want to hold on to each precious memory. It is easy to forget that we all can touch someone's life and make a difference. Make a small difference today. Feel up not down and push closer to find what the universe has to offer.

And rock on.
Robb Donker
(please check out the links below and if you enjoy it let me know- hit me on Facebook or Instagram.

Plastic Fantastic Lyrics Video