Vienna Teng: Inland Territory

ZOE1125_Cover8.0 out of 10 | iTunes | Buy CD

When I finally sat down to listen to Inland Territory, Vienna Teng’s fourth album, it had already gone through the digitalization process, been purchased online and transferred to my iPod. It was, therefore, ironic to me that the first thing to be heard on the album is the sound of crackling vinyl. But this sound is somehow comforting and is no doubt a reference to several of her influences. Just like the heroes of the 60’s folk movement, Vienna Teng has written lyrics that are poetic and intelligent. And her classical training has heightened her song-writing abilities, which together form a style that is more complex than much of what is written today. Continue reading

Kevin So: Best Foot Forward


8.0 out of 10 | iTunes | Buy CD

Kevin So has been in the game for a little over a decade now.  Constantly on the road or recording, he’s toured all over the country, the world, and has 8 albums under his belt.  Another contemporary of his, Annie Lin, one told me that she was in a remote, isolated town in the Southwest US when she stopped for gas.  While browsing the random pamphlets at the rest stop, she came across a flyer for none other than Mr. So, advertising his local show. Continue reading

Blip Blip Bleep: Alarm Clock Snooze Bar Get Up


8.5 out of 10 | iTunes | Buy CD

I’ve been a fan of Blip Blip Bleep ever since their debut EP, Wireless, came out back in late 2006.  The main architect of this 3-piece synth-dance-rock outfit is Sean Han, whose laid back persona belies the stomping, dancing, singer who steps out on stage to front this band at various clubs around Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Photo by Tim Devine (

Photo by Tim Devine (

BBB’s sophomore release, Alarm Clock Snooze Bar Get Up is a 6-song concept EP.  The album gives us a Han’s eye view of a day in the life of a New York City 20-something (or perhaps a 30-something… Because, after all, 40 is the new 30, which makes 30 the new 20, I suppose). Continue reading

New Music from Alfa

Photo by Emily Tan
Photo by Emily Tan

One of our favorites, Alfa Garcia, has gone and posted a few new tunes on her MySpace (no doubt to whet our appetites for her upcoming album…).  These new tracks find Alfa in fine form, with vocals sounding better, perhaps, than they ever have in her career.   If these songs are any indication, her songwriting has taken on a more mature stance.  But don’t let the “m” word fool you… These songs are still filled with super singable hooks and the wordplay and poetry for which Alfa is known.

The quick rundown:

“Supergirl”  – Poppy, jumpy jaunt.  Woot!
“Don’t Write Your Goodbyes” – Strolling mid-tempo rock ‘n roll tune.
“Isabelle” – Alfa shows her songwriting depth, even dabbling in French… Oo la la!

Verdict: Can’t wait for the whole shebang.