This week, we take a break from earth music and take to the stars with rock ’n’ roll as ‘What’s Spinning’ explores two short albums made with the upmost care and musical talent put in behind them. Both Texas-based Alien Ghost Magic and Illinois locals Dumpster Pizza contribute a refreshing sound to the world of music.
Nothing beats a solo guitar and a singer with something to say and if you feel the same, Dumpster Pizza is the best bet for you.
This DIY release shows incredible precision with recording techniques and begins with “Real Hard Time” which grabs the listener in quick with an interesting blend of lyrics and emotion emitting from the guitar. The song title is perfect for the energy emitted from the intro track to the album and it only gets better from there.
“Stray Man” follows up with an interesting story about hitchhiking and trials on the road. The song’s guitar track is noticeably cleaner than the previous track, however throughout this album, the guitar tone matches the mood of the songs very well. “Stray Man” is presented as a bit of a somber song, along with other songs on the album, and because of this, the strumming is a bit more relaxed.
“I’m Better Off Alone” stands out in the album as possibly the most memorable example of storytelling and songwriting listeners are going to hear for some time, and the song doesn’t even break two minutes. By making a mountain out a mole hill, the artists create their own dilemmas and then retreats to their hole under the entirety of all of it. It’s a catchy song that will leave the listener refreshing the repeat play button just to catch all the lyrics to sing along.
What more can be said about an artist who puts their emotions, tales and fears into an album and releases it to the world? Dumpster Pizza is, again, an excellent example of the music of a new generation caught between the MTV gap and the box store bestsellers list. Hundreds of artists circulate the highways of this country attempting to tell their story to another group of people at a packed house show while the masses gripe about there being “no good music anymore.”
Check out Dumpster Pizza at dumpsterpizza.bandcamp.com/album/untitled-ep.
Alien Ghost Magic
“Hail, hail rock ‘n’ roll!,” or at least that used to be what people said, echoing Chuck Berry, when a fresh new rock and roll band rolled through their ears. Now, it seems they stand in the back clutching a beer or outside trading air for cigarettes. No more of that if Alien Ghost Magic swings through town.
This six-song E.P. hits the listener with just about anything for any fan of rock and roll, pop punk or whatever, its just good music. “Alien” is packed full of sounds coming from a well-practiced band who knows how to release an album. From the guitar leads to the well-timed drum fills and bass in the back, this band knows the ropes and has released a great album reminiscent of the mid-2000s pop punk-post punk music we all fell in love with in middle and high school.
“For the Glory of Satan” is a fun song about the experiences of living in a small town and feeling alone, but not quite being able to reach out. Musically, the song is a great treat to the listener looking for a new take on the power ballads our parents sang along to.
“The Help on DVD” is a great song full of puns, wise words of remembrance and food for thought to sustain an artist through life. Though the band is not putting out “wizard rock” they solemnly swear they are up to no good. Adding “too young to be wise and too old to be cool” is an interesting way of looking at the 20-somethings flooding the music scene at this time.
There seems to be this unique idea circulating through musicians across the country, that they were born, and are existing in a strange time where they missed the exciting past and are too young to enter the promising future. Nonetheless, Alien Ghost Magic continue trucking on with their remarkable sound in this great album.
Overall, the album feels like the band is an offshoot to The Matches with their in-depth stories and glories and talented music. The band takes off immediately on the album and keeps the energy going throughout, a definite must-listen for fans of pure rock and roll fun.
Check out Alien Ghost Magic at alienghostmagic.bandcamp.com/releases.