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Thursday, April 24, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 52.0° F  Light Rain
The Daily

MADTRACKS

MadTracks -- 'Daytime Lover' by Moses Patrou

Dane County native Moses Patrou has remained busy since moving to New York in 2004. Between teaching gigs, tours with the Mama Digdown's Brass Band, recording New Orleans-influenced funk and soul on his own and singing the lead vocal on a popular Coke commercial that parodies Grand Theft Auto, he's kept his name out there in musical circles. On "Daytime Lover" from his solo debut Introducing Moses Patrou, he slips easily into the role of contemporary R&B crooner. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Desperate' by Blueheels

Take away Robby Schiller's unique sad-sack vocals, and "Desperate" by Blueheels from the group's forthcoming release Lessons in Sunday Driving could be another cut off a George Strait album. The waltz time, the bittersweet pedal steel filigree, the steady rise in volume and dynamics that occurs about four-fifths of the way through the tune -- they're all markers of pure country. >More
 MadTracks -- 'I Been Over Dere' by The Gomers

Okay, the concept's pretty simple: Take "I've Been Everywhere," Johnny Cash's kickin' country recitation of the many cities and towns he'd rambled through, and then change all those burgs to places in Wisconsin. Now, in some hands, this would be just so much cornball Badgerania, but we're talking about The Gomers, clown princes of musical cheese. >More
 MadTracks -- 'In the Ring' by The Rebuilts

Add meat-and-potatoes Milwaukee/Madison rockers The Rebuilts to the list of Wisconsin bands who are looking back at early punk and rockabilly for inspiration. In their case, you can almost hear Johnny Thunders and Sid Vicious whispering encouragement in the background as lead singer Skip Peer hiccups and snarls his way through the lyrics of "In the Ring" from their 2007 EP Four on the Floor. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Idle American' by The Cutouts

With local roots that stretch all the way back to jocular party punks Phil Gnarly & the Tough Guys, The Cutouts are prime representatives of a strain of garage-flavored pop that flourished in Madison during the '80s and early '90s. On "Idle American," vocalist/bass player Scott Olson expresses familiar fuck-all teen angst with a sneering nasal tenor that's got "mangy pug" written all over it. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Missouri' by The Runners-Up

Winter got you down? Then don't hesitate to add "Missouri" to your personal playlist. At first listen, you figure, okay, The Runners-Up are reveling in '60s-style SoCal pop. You've got the peppy drums, that briskly strummed electric guitar that doesn't stint on treble, and sing-song vocals that are as light and fresh as a spring day in the park. But that pert and happy aren't what "Missouri" is about at all. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Two Ships' by The Cowboy & The Frenchman

Given the first half of their moniker, it's no surprise that The Cowboy & The Frenchman lope through the verses of "Two Ships," which is drawn from a demo the indie duo made available for aural consumption late last year. What is surprising is how the local twosome manage to be simultaneously wistful and jaunty. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Derailed' by Mud Angels

Nashville's embrace of twangy pop acts that keep a governor on the country side of the equation ought to be a boon for blues-rockers like Mud Angels. While the Madison-area quintet has recorded some simmering blues grooves on their new album, A Bolt from the Blue, it kicks up the most dust on up-tempo tunes that give lead singer Laura England and the band's two guitarists a chance to display some carefully modulated aggression. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Emergency Caller/Utah Desert' by El Valiente

You've gotta hand it to El Valiente: They have a way with musical textures. To be honest, their skills are such that it's easy to imagine this accomplished instrumental trio putting their guitar, bass and drums (and glockenspiel) lineup in the service of obvious evocations of desert landscapes that owe much to Ennio Morricone and Ry Cooder or post-punk-flavored prog that samples the legacy of Don Caballaro. >More
 MadTracks -- 'Explosive Improvised Device' by The JoAnne Pow!ers Trio

Saxophonist JoAnne Pow!ers has worked long and hard around these parts trying to establish herself as a serious "free" player. It's been a courageous and, at times, lonely pursuit in a city, that for all its charms, has never been especially kind to musicians who prefer to dance outside the lines. >More
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