Tag Archive: “Anyway Records”

Beautifully soaked melodies, her own established brand of pop-tinged rock-the tracks to singer/songwriter Mary Lynn’s latest album My Animal are simply too hard to resist.

The Columbus, Ohio musician recently has stepped out on her own after near decade run with her previous band This Is My Suitcase.  My Animal offers up songs on love, growing pains, and relationships that essentially captures Lynn’s vulnerability in a powerful way that’s can be true to her.

Mary Lynn partnered with mixing engineer Bill Moriarty (Man Man, Dr Dog) to help bring My Animal into the true sonic animal it is. And Mary Lynn says her music is just what she strives to be: “Real; Honest; Human; Myself”.

Check out the video for “Space”:

My Animal was nationally released on September 23, 2016 through Anyway Records.

(Visit Mary Lynn here: http://songsbymarylynn.com/)

Since the year 2000, Ghettoblaster has been putting out a quarterly print magazine.  For Ghettoblast from the Past, we look back at the bands and artists that were showcased within these pages.

From Issue 41, Remote Control/Milk Records Courtney Barnett.  Words by Chad Wells.

Also from Issue 41, Anyway Records Kyle Sowashes.  Words by Tim Anderl.

Court-Kyle (2)

To subscribe to Ghettoblaster Magazine or to pick up this issue, head over to our In Print page.

Based out of Columbus, OH, singer-songwriter Mary Lynn is armed with a rock band, her heart, and a force of pop energy.­  Her debut release on Anyway Records proves she has the superpower ability to spin a phrase with the catchiest hooks imaginable.

Her former band of nearly a decade, This Is My Suitcase, released three records of noise-­inflected art pop before the band decided to move on, leaving Mary Lynn to pursue her own music. Following up from the heartfelt pop diary that was her first solo album, Familiar Things & Places, her upcoming release strikes a louder, braver pose.

Drenched in beautiful melodies and vulnerability, My Animal dives confidently into deep emotional territory while maintaining a unique pop-­rock energy that consistently surprises. Her strong melodies soar above the painful experiences that birthed them; all while sticking to listener’s minds like glue. Quite simply, My Animal is full of terrific pop-rock-and-roll hits.

“The album, to me, is truly a force of energy.  It’s about movement and growing and feeling alive. It’s full of highs and lows and glimmers of hope. These are songs I wrote with my rock band in mind, but still coming straight from my heart.”

Mary Lynn partnered with mixing engineer Bill Moriarty (Man Man, Dr Dog) to help bring My Animal into the true sonic animal it is. And Mary Lynn says her music is just what she strives to be: “Real; Honest; Human; Myself.

My Animal will be nationally released on September 23rd, 2016 through Anyway Records.

Here’s the first single off of My Animal, “Two and Two”.

St. Lenox (photo by Eric Falk)
St. Lenox (photo by Eric Falk)

St. Lenox is the project of Columbus, Ohio’s Andrew Choi. Categorized as folktronica, r&b and jazz, he has performed nationally, appearing at CMJ and MidPoint Music Festival. His debut album, 10 Songs About Memory and Hope has received critical praise from NPR and Dusted Magazine, and John Darnielle, of the Mountain Goats, called him a “lyricist of the highest order.”

Today Ghettoblaster has the pleasure of premiering a live video for “You’re Not Here,” done as part of the Mug & Brush sessions, which also included Lydia Loveless and Connections. This is what Choi told us about it:

“An interesting anecdote about that song in the Mug & Brush video – I actually performed it live, on the season premiere of Season 3 of a show called Extreme Cheapskates, on TLC, serenading a couple going on a date.  The producers cut everything except for maybe the first five seconds of the song.  So, this is the full version of that song.”

Watch it here:

(Visit St. Lenox here: http://www.facebook.com/st.lenox.)

The Kyle Sowashes
The Kyle Sowashes

2015 got radical with the announcement that Anyway Records (St. Lenox, Connections, Guided By Voices, The Ass Ponys) would be releasing the latest by The Kyle Sowashes, titled Everybody, on April 28 (today!).

It was like Columbus-based writer Kevin J. Elliott read our minds when he had this to say about Sowash and the band:

“It would be easy for me to start by saying every fertile music scene in America has a Kyle Sowash to call its own. He’s the integral, overambitious, indie-rock everyman responsible for bringing to town bands that, barring his begging, would otherwise pass on by. He’s the fervent local enthusiast always in the front row, even on a wintry Tuesday. His floor’s been infinitely crashed upon, his bank account tapped from self-financed/self-made tours of the country — basically he’s racked up enough D.I.Y. karma points that you’re obligated to buy his new record Everybody on his good works alone. Sowash’s selfless moral character may be common in places like Cleveland, Portland, Athens, and Chapel Hill, but his style, his demeanor and his songs are distinctly Columbus, Ohio.

Normally, naming a band after oneself is a shallow stroke of ego (e.g., Steve Miller, Bob Seger), but for Kyle Sowash, it couldn’t be any other way. After slaving over a decade’s worth of unrecognized lo-fi indie anthems, he deserves a complete, full-throttle band to flesh out his earnest ballads and scrappy pop songs.

The Kyle Sowashes are a supergroup of sorts, composed of four dynamic players assembled from formidable Ohio bands such as 84 Nash, SPD GVNR and The Cabdrivers, but each is channeling a little Kyle Sowash on Everybody.

Recorded in August 2014 in Columbus, Ohio by Keith Hanlon, Everybody’s 16 songs are straight out of the indie rock cookbook. Tracks like the propulsive “King Shit of Fuck Mountain” and “The Day You Called Me Captain” are fortified with extra heft and sonic vision, but they retain the goofy charm and sharp hooks that have defined Sowash’s career.

Sowash readily admits his debt to indie rock’s golden age. Everybody is a study in the work of bands such as Superchunk, Archers of Loaf, Silkworm and Pavement–but he draws on those influences judiciously. In other words, this is no tribute album. While “Irrelevant” and “Richmond, VA” will certainly signal a nostalgic flag, the themes are distinctly Columbus, distinctly Kyle Sowash. This album makes getting older and longing for the mid-’90s sound fun… It’s time to get your beard ready again!”

To celebrate the release, Ghettoblaster has the pleasure of premiering the video for “King Shit of Fuck Mountain,” which was directed by Mike Postalakis.  For a more family friendly version of the song, see the album’s alternative cut, “King Chip of Fudge Mountain.”  Enjoy:

The Kyle Sowashes – King Shit of Fuck Mountain (OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO) from mike postalakis on Vimeo.

(Visit The Kyle Sowashes here: http://thekylesowashes.bandcamp.com

See the band live here:


Winter Makes Sailors (photo by Alison Rose Nocera)

Sean Gardner, the multi-instumentalist and vocalist behind Winter Makes Sailors has long been a staple in the robust and diverse Columbus music scene. Racking up an impressive rock resume including stints with Denovo, Kopaz, Melty Melty, The Kyle Sowashes, Bookmobile and The Receiver, Winter Makes Sailors is Gardner’s most individualistic endeavor – sometimes so individualistic that Gardner is the only player on stage. Simple songs, simple chords, and simple changes can be expected from a band that starts in the bedroom and ends up on the stage as a big, thick, formidable indie-rock machine.

In anticipation of their latest record,  Moving On (out on Anyway Records and We Want Action on April 26), Ghettoblaster caught up with vocalist Sean Gardner to discuss what he appreciates most about being a musician.  This is what he said.

What do you enjoy most about being a musician?

There is so much to love about being a musician. I love the process of writing a song, recording a song, and then sharing that song. It’s exciting to hear an idea turn into a recording. I love the friends that I’ve made through playing music. If you think about it, it’s like a bunch of like-minded people taking turns sharing ideas with each other and really putting themselves out there to do just that. People sacrifice so much to be a part of the music scene. Whether it’s lending their floor for a touring band or quitting a job to tour. The whole community is about making stories, friends, and as many good songs as you can. The best part is that you can contribute as much or as often as you want for as long as you want. Anybody doing it for any other reason isn’t doing it right.

What is your favorite instrument to play and why?

My favorite instrument is the guitar. My songs sound better with guitar. I know it well enough now that I’m comfortable on it, so my ideas don’t get caught up in trying to find the right chords like they used to. The guitar is warm and it’s mood can change with mine. Every guitar has its own voice because of it’s age and feel and style. They can be cheap or collectible but they all bring something to the table.

Do you prefer performing or recording music?

I prefer performing music. I’ve always thought of myself more as a performer. I love engaging an audience, the romance of being in a bar, playing songs even when nobody is listening. Recording is great and I love it dearly. But, sometimes I get so caught up in the little things that I forget the point of what I was trying to accomplish. The performance forces you to simplify and I truly believe that the best songs are the easiest.

What is the best compliment someone has given you about your music?

That’s a tough question. I don’t know that one compliment supersedes another. This kid Calvin started coming to shows with his Dad because he saw me open for Damien Jurado. His dad is awesome and loves good music. Calvin is nine or ten. I think when he comes to a show at 11pm and can keep his eyes open long enough to watch, that’s pretty awesome.

What is a milestone that you were able to accomplish with your most recent album that you’d never achieved before?

Some of the songs on this record are almost ten years old. I feel like the fact that I finally finished it and pressed it is the accomplishment. While this collection of songs sat in the background, I helped write, record and support seven other records with 5 other bands. I’ve stayed busy with numerous projects since I started playing music. But, I feel like now I’ve found my happy place…at least for awhile.

What is your favorite song on that record?

The songs on this record are road worn and have been played with dozens of different musicians. Winter Makes Sailors has always been me with a rotating, supporting cast until this last year. Now I have an incredible unstoppable band. I have so many memories of these songs from the different recorded versions to the different venues and cities they’ve been played in. I think the title track is my favorite.

It sums up what I was trying to accomplish with my music back when I wrote it. It can be played solo or with the full band and it’s always fun and seems to leave a mark on people. The version on the record is fairly well orchestrated and sounds ambient, powerful and swooning. It’s dynamic, melodic, yet super simple. It’s exactly what I was going for.

Where is your favorite place to perform?

Well, I’ve favored a few places in my hometown of Columbus. I’ve been really supported by a few venues especially. I love Kobo and the Tree Bar (Andyman’s Treehouse). They are each charming in their own way and the owners are the best, most supportive bar owners I’ve had the privilege to work with. The owners are musicians and understand what both performers and audience members want and need to enjoy a show. Ace of Cups is a great new place to play too. I play those the most. I think my favorite venue is Comfest. It doesn’t always sound great, and loading is a bitch. But, it’s a yearly outdoor LOCAL music festival in downtown Columbus. It lasts for 3 days, there are several stages, tons of musicians and artists, kids and dogs everywhere. It’s in the middle of the summer and everyone is hanging out in the grass, drinking, smiling, catching-up since the previous year’s Comfest. I always run into really old friends. People come home for Comfest.

Who is the best/most fun artist/band you’ve ever performed on the same bill with?

At this point, I’ve shared the stage with a lot of old heroes. But one of the most memorable shows was with Les Savy Fav. My old band, Denovo, opened for them at this short-lived venue called The Music Factory. The place was packed, the energy was high and we played a hell of a show. Then, Les Savy Fav took the stage. Not only the catchiest record of 2003, with witty, hilarious lines, but the performance of the band is on another level. I’ve seen them several times, but this show was incredible. I used the fact that I opened for them to stand backstage to watch the show so that I could see better. I watched Tim (the singer) take the glasses off of a kid up front and put them on a random girl, hang the mic cable from the ceiling and swing from it. At one point he disappeared in the crowd to pop up on top of the bar in the back (50 ft from stage). Then he dismantled a light in the ceiling, put it on the floor behind me and had me do the egyptian dance with my arms in front of a curtain so that I looked like an egyptian shadow puppet. Yeah…and they nailed every song.