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Steve Voss paints the picture of a mid-aughts major label stalwart that eventually buckled under the weight of feedback from the mess of people involved in the process. Framed with this context, the moniker Tetherball comes into sharp relief. At the end of his rope and refusing to be swatted back and forth into submission, Voss withdrew from Atlantic Records and his home state of Colorado. He receded to a studio in an industrial neck of Nashville, still tinkering with sound but with a very cracked perspective; essentially the industry version of Lazlo Hollyfeld.


Tetherball's album will officially drop October 28th via Silver Point Recods. Even if this backstory weren’t true, “Whimsy” still sounds like someone reveling in their eccentricity. It’s weird, and deals it out its peculiarity in mid-tempo canters and clearly-baked moseys. Sci-fi plays just as big of a thematic influence as personal experience, so if you have a taste for the slightly off-center, parts of this album will have you clapping your hands in delight. The guitar tone has a tendency to do infectiously cool things, like the jangle at the opening of “Vegetarian” or the tit for tat that kicks off “Bootss.” This album could probably play in tandem with any South Park episode and mirror it with frightening accuracy.


This is not to say that Voss has lost all awareness of pop sensibility. For very Primus off-note there is an alternative snarl, which makes for an interesting and palatable listen. Tetherball maintains a high level of theatrics throughout, from the grand sweeping boredom of “Hometown” to the Western swing of "Boulderado" the big top rhythm of “Spring Chicken,” a track that had me playing indie-rock matchmaker and wondering for a second how cool it would be to see them on tour with Thao and the Get Down Stay Down.


“Whimsy” is an amazing first statement from this fledgling band. It’s clear that this is a pin pulled from a grenade, and that the Tetherball dimension is something that will only expand. We can’t wait to see how this band evolves. Stream the album HERE, and check out their website at: www.tetherballmusic.com

Welcome to the new Deli Charts, organized by genre and scene.

To rank the artists with the star system go to the Top 50.


scene blog

Wowee; you know something is good when it rocks you and leaves you a little shaken up.  Maybe it was just the frames of a snake coiling around Devan DuBois' hand, or maybe it was the never-broken tension that climbs in his video for "Long Live" that made me rewatch it a few times trying to figure out why my skin was crawling just a wee bit.  It could be that the video's stark black and white spaghetti Westernisms conjured up some associations with Jim Jarmusch's "Dead Man," and... that's a journey I'm not quite ready to take again. Anyway, it's a great visual complement to DuBois' hyperactive sweep of Southern rock. His debut album, "Le Fou" (French for "The Fool") was just released on August 19th on Sensibility Music. With a hip-hop mind in it's beatmaking but a definite twang resonating throughout, it ought to be a primer on how genres should combine.  -Terra James-Jura


August 20, 2014

The Ignorist came to me at a time when I've been going aggro on weights at the gym with Archers of Loaf's "Vee Vee" as a soundtrack. So my ears were primed for an instant affinity with their slacker vibe and every-which-way skew of their guitars. The vocals never reach Bachmann-levels of agitation, but instead retain a slightly detached composure throughout their debut release, "There is No Vacancy." Below is "I Know They're Blue," which should offer some consolation to anyone who misses 1994 (also, if you have ten minutes to invest, also check out "Hotel Ok," to hear how the track eventually dissolves around one guitar lick feeding on its own dejection.) The album is availabel via Cdbaby, iTunes and Google Play, although The Ignorist do not have any upcoming shows announced at the moment in case you wanted to get your sticky fingers around a physical copy from a physical band member. Keep an eye out for any changes to this situation at their Facebook page. -Terra James-Jura

The Ignorist submitted their music for review HERE.


August 19, 2014

The Cunning kind of swept this round, pulling ahead in the last few days with a sizeable lead.  Frontman Sean Cunningham (get it?) started the group in 2013 after leaving his New Zealand-based project ATLAS to return stateside. The foursome have been building their reputation as steadfast rock'n'rollers ever since. They possess a straighforward dedication to the genre, puncuated by a few refreshing jinks here and there thanks to seasoned veterans manning all four fronts. Their win coincides nicely with the release of their newest video, "Lonesome No More." The track is slightly reminiscent of The Features, with a little Anthony Kiedis spin on some of the vocals. It's a great track to debut as a single; I can't get enough of that gut-rumbling bass.  The Cunning are preparing to release their first EP this week, and have a show coming up August 23rd for The Hot Chicken and Jorts Festival at Mayday Brewery in Murfreesboro. At the moment is has not been confirmed whether the band will be performing in jorts, but positive speculation is high.  -Terra James-Jura 

August 17, 2014

Ugly Kids Club released this single "Good Love" on Tuesday in anticipation of their upcoming EP "Head Games," due out September 30th.  It blazes by you like a comet of 80's nostalgia, as interpreted by sparkly-eyed youths who would have no idea what to do with a Popple if they saw one. Age disparity aside, it's a concrete track, thanks to glossy production and an irrepressible, unflagging energy that can't help but bubble over out of the speakers.  It's hard to dislike a band that describes themselves as "A pop-grunge band formed by Madonna, Andy Warhol and M83." Ugly Kids Club has a decent track record so far of making good music despite their insistence in reviving some of the worst bits that god-forsaken era, (evidenced here) so hopes are high for this EP.  Their next Nashville show will be August 26th at The High Watt with Lylas and Field Days.  Keep up with the band at http://www.uglykidsclub.com/. -Terra James-Jura

August 15, 2014

 Starting early on August 17, 6pm to be exact, there will be three great bands at 3rd and Lindsley. Tristen and Adia Victoria will be opening for Nashville fixtures Those Darlins. It’s a female-fronted night and Those Darlins' last Nashville show for a while. Adia Victoria finally, finally, finally released single "Stuck in the South" after months of buzz based off her live show alone.  Check out the track below. The show is all ages so the whole family can join. Tickets are $10 online or at the doors. -Amanda Aydelott

August 13, 2014

One of the great things about writing for The Deli is being made aware of bands that would otherwise have flown under my personal radar (and they are legion.) So consider me thrilled to have been introduced to The Cordovas via our music submissions. Their second full length album, "Love Bravely" was released this May, and damn, it is magic. The Cordovas hit upon a very fluid form of alt-rock (as they bill themselves), channeling the bare bones grit of the Black Keys as well as the reverent soul of Matisyahu.  There are also elements of R&B and funk, with a few instances that could have been at home on a Modest Mouse album, all potential to make for a band trying to do too much at once if it weren't for the capable direction of creator Joe Firstman. In additon to being a bottomless well of natural songwriting talent with years of touring experience with A-list acts, Firstman can claim four years acting as bandleader for The Carson Daily show.  The role required a high level of day-to-day adaptability, which plays strongly into the polish and cohesion of "Love Bravely." There's something magnetic here; watch this video for "Do No Wrong," which is nothing but Firstman walking down the street looking like sh*t, and see if it doesn't suck you in.  -Terra James-Jura

The Cordovas upcoming Nashville shows are August 21st at South Paw Supper Club, and August 28th at Soulsine Pizza. 


August 12, 2014

Which of These Local Acts Should Be Our Next Nashville Artist of the Month?

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