Cultfever – Hot Sardines
CULTFEVER is a collaboration between Brooklyn-based musicians TAMARA JAFAR and JOE DURNIAK. Their self-titled and self-produced debut album, released November 1, 2011, has been rapidly generating buzz among indie music enthusiasts for its cinematic soundscapes and moments of unhinged romanticism. Within a week of its release music blogs such as The Kollection, Music Ninja, and Music Savage were among the many to hail the debut while veteran music journalist Lorraine Ali (Spin, LA Times, Rolling Stone) commended the album for being “cool and cohesive” and “sublime as it is dynamic.” The glow of early reviews demonstrates a simple, essential truth about Cultfever: their strength is in their range.
Their talent for dynamic story-telling is clear from the moment the album opens with a dramatic drop into its first track, KNEWYOUWELL. Ghostly, soaring vocals thread over and under frenetic synth lines and a pulsing beat which propels the escapist anthem towards a surprise break into starkness and sparcity. The eight impeccably vivid tracks that follow present a refreshing and unruly inventiveness. Cultfever’s songwriting harnesses a manic energy that explodes out of unexpected arrangements—it’s addictive. In one instance, FARM, the duo weave together psych-rock guitar licks, marching boots, slide whistles, triumphant strings, home-made synths, horns, and quietly seductive—though at times violent—vocal stylings.
Cultfever’s brand of genre-irreverant, intellectual-pop quirk generated “one hell of a debut” (Bowlegs Music Review). The self-titled album is available online at iTunes, Amazon, and Bandcamp.
Take a blustery brass lineup, layer it over a rhythm section led by a stride-piano virtuoso in the Fats Waller vein, and tie the whole thing together with a one-of-the-boys frontwoman with a voice from another era, and you have the Hot Sardines. (We haven’t even told you about the tap dancer yet.)
In a short time, the Hot Sardines have gone from their first gig – at a coffeeshop on the last Q train stop in Queens – to selling out Joe’s Pub five times in as many months, headlining at Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing, and opening for the Bad Plus, Lulu Gainsbourg and French gypsy-jazz artist Zaz. Through it all they’ve become regulars at the Shanghai Mermaid speakeasy and turned The Standard, where they play regularly, into their own “saloon in the sky” (The Wall Street Journal) – complete with tap dancing on the bar – honing a live persona that’s been called “unforgettably wild” and “consistently electrifying” (Popmatters).
The Sardine sound – wartime Paris via New Orleans, or the other way around – is steeped in hot jazz, salty stride piano, and the kind of music Louis Armstrong, Django Reinhardt and Waller used to make: Straight-up, foot-stomping jazz. (Literally – the band includes a tap dancer whose feet count as two members of the rhythm section). They manage to invoke the sounds of a near-century ago and stay resolutely in step with the current age. And while their roots run deep into jazz, that most American of genres, they’re intertwined with French influences via their frontwoman, who was born and raised in Paris (and writes songs in both languages).
The band was born when said Parisian (“Miz Elizabeth” Bougerol) met a stride piano player (bandleader Evan “Bibs” Palazzo) at a jam session they found on Craigslist. Above a noodle shop on Manhattan’s 49th Street, they discovered a mutual love for songs from the 1920s, ’30s and ’40s that no-one really plays anymore. Or if they play them, “they handle them with kid gloves, like pieces in a museum,” says Evan, underscoring a point the pair can’t stress enough: “This music isn’t historical artifact. It’s a living, breathing, always-evolving thing.”
“Everything’s kind of being rewritten. And when nothing makes sense, there’s something real and satisfying about going to hear raucous jazz played in a dancehall with wooden floors and brown liquor.” – Miz Elizabeth
For tickets click here
For further information click here
Event Category: Live Music
When: September 16, 2013
Where: Mercury Lounge
More Info: http://www.mercuryloungenyc.com/