Wednesday, April 12, 2017

These 3 Artists Satisfy My Elliot Smith Bittersweet Tooth: Eddie Angel, Gregory Mendez, Sandy Alex G

When Elliot Smith left us there was a clear void in the universe. The exquisite way he shared the depth of his emotions through his songs was unique. There are ear marks of his sound, acoustic notes that give away to chords and then back again. Somber melodies, stacked vocal harmonies, half step progressions and building swells of sound and cascades of vocals and budding big choruses and interwoven complex musical interludes. There are also elements that are hard to discern or describe but you know it when you hear it.

Many artist's here and there reflect some of these things, these Elliot Smithisms not as copy cats but maybe just because the man's influence is so incredibly rich that everyone absorbs it in some way. As of late there are three artists who satiate my bittersweet ES tooth.
Let me say that I may be hearing these ES influences and they may not even be there really. Most of these artists in toto do not sound like ES but in some of there songs there are those delicacies that make me think of him and that makes me happy.



Eddie Angel
just released a 3 track EP called "Rise And Fall" that is cool and pure. I love all the songs and at least 2 have some of the ES tones and yet they are all Eddie. I met him some years ago in the Long Beach area of California when he was doing more of a rock thing as the forefront of a 3 piece alt rock powerhouse with a soft center. He now resides in Stockton (first pic above) raising his lovely boy and making such sweet sounds as a solo artist. Eddie's song always move me.





I first blogged about Greg Mendez at that time as just "Mendez" via last years so cool and evocative project "Phone Records" which were these stark, weird, beautiful stories recorded via his cell phone in his West Village tenement.


His latest that just came out yesterday Entitled:

¯​\​_​(​ツ​)​_​/​¯ the 7 track album out on Bandcamp. This album feels like a step up from Phone Records though you can never negate the power of that project as well. Still kind of stripped down it shows a wider scope. There is the wickedly cool Sleep that has an almost glam feel. The wide expanse of Plastic Jesus and the afflicted Gone. I hear some of the ES touches on many of the song but none more so than Real Cruel Bastard. Love Mendez.







DIY alt folk multi-instrumentalist singer songwriter Philadelphia phenom Sandy Alex G - (Alexander Giannascoli) has been turning musical minds at a quick pace his Bandcamp bedroom recordings engaging his ever growing fan base. Critical acclaim followed as his 6th album hit critical mass and multiple Best of 2014 lists. UK Lucky Number Music label remastered those bedroom recordings. In 2015 Giannascoli signed with Domino Recording Company as part of the 2015 South by Southwest showcase and in August of 2015 Giannascoli "album" album with Domino.

You can hear the Elliot Smith influence throughout Alex's sound. I really hear it on the new single Proud from his newly released album Rocket.

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