Toucan Sounds is a record label & producer crew curated by French Horn Rebellion in Brooklyn, NY, and operated out of YouTooCanWoo, an artist-owned music and production studio in Williamsburg. The label officially launched in April, 2019, and this compilation features our favorite music released from our debut year. All tracks were remastered especially for vinyl, and include titles by Yuksek, Jean Tonique, JD Samson, Patterns , and more.
Founded by Daptone Records’ own Bosco Mann after building a new recording studio in his hometown of Riverside, California, Penrose Records will showcase the most exciting acts emerging on the blossoming SoCal souldies scene today. For its inaugural release, the label offers up five singles by five exciting new artists: Thee Sacred Souls from San Diego; Jason Joshua from Miami; East L.A. mainstays Thee Sinseers, and The Altons; and Altadena veterans, Los Yesterdays.
All five 45s + digital compilation will be available April 10th.
| Thee Sacred Souls “Can I Call You Rose?” / “Weak For Your Love”|
What better way to christen Daptone’s fledgling imprint Penrose Records than with “Can I Call You Rose?,” a sumptuous and serendipitously titled mid-tempo premier by San Diego’s blossoming young soul serenaders, Thee Sacred Souls. Stepping off the stage after their very first club date, Josh, Sal, and Alex were tugged aside by producer Bosco Mann whose seasoned ears had been tickled by their set. Backs were patted, hands were shook, and three days later heads were bobbing in Mann’s Riverside studio, as the Souls laid their first notes to tape.
| Thee Sinseers “Seems Like” / Instrumental|
As one of the most popular groups on today’s So-Cal soul scene, Thee Sinseers need little introduction. Their performance of “Seems Like” live at the Recordium went viral to the tune of over a million views, making them thee in-demand group for souldies parties up and down the coast. When asked what song they wanted to cut for their Penrose session, singer, songwriter, and man-who-can-play-any-instrument, Joey Quiñones didn’t hesitate to answer, “We need a proper recording of that song.” And so it was done. In the candle-lit studio, the band delivered unto us a starkly intimate rendition, stripping the tune down to its underthings, and laying bare Joe Q’s euphonious exhortations.
|Jason Joshua & the Penrose Scholars “Language of Love” / “La Vida Es Fría”|
Since exploding onto the scene with his debut 45, “Rosegold” and it’s anthemic follow-up, “I Don’t Care,” Jason Joshua has built a dedicated following for his distinctive latin-soul sound and his notoriously titillating live performances. Following a string of homegrown Miami recordings with the Beholders on his own Mango Hill Records, Jason hopped the plane to Riverside to gather the Penrose Scholars for a session with his friend Bosco Mann, where he was eager to prove that just like a record, there’s more than one side to a man.
|The Altons “When You Go (That’s When You’ll Know)” / “Over and Over” |
Though Bryan Ponce and Adriana Flores share the stage with Joey Q as part of the East LA souldies outfit Thee Sinseers, they really step into the spotlight with The Altons, a group they themselves founded along with drummer Caitlin Moss and bassist Gabriel Maldonado . On this their debut single on Penrose, Bryan sings the lead with a smoky-sweet falsetto that bends tenderly from growl to howl and back again. The group takes a turn through a classic Miracles-style mid-tempo groove on the A-side, leaving you helplessly addicted to their sweet eponymous refrain, When you go that’s when you’ll know… Watch the video for “When You Go (That’s When You’ll Know)”.
| Los Yesterdays “Tell Me I’m Dreaming” / “Time” |
Los Yesterdays originated in an Altadena garage when Gabriel Rowland teamed up with his old friend Victor Benavides. Rowland, a long time drummer and eccentric creator of multitudinous soulful things, took charge of recording as well as playing all the instruments, while Benavides wrote and cut vocals. The project pretty much stayed in their garage for a few years until a mutual connection brought them to the attention of Tom Brenneck and Gabe Roth, who both dug the songs and offered to join in on guitar and bass respectively so that the duo might be able to perform their music live. The four soon found a handful of gigs behind them and a Penrose recording date in front of them.
Destroyer’s Dan Bejar initially conceived of Have We Met as a Y2K album. He was already active during the era but not heard overhead in a cafe or salon, which is perhaps what the idea of the Y2K sound evokes nearly two decades later. Bejar assigned frequent producer and bandmate John Collins the role of layering synth and rhythm sections over demos with the period-specific Björk, Air, and Massive Attack in mind, but he soon realized the sonic template was too removed from Destroyer’s own, and the idea of a concept was silly anyway. So he abandoned it and gave Collins the most timeless instruction of all: “Make it sound cool.”
Atmosphere and loose approximations of a place or feeling are what we’ve come to expect from any new Destroyer record—certainly not an easily defined and stridently adhered to theme or concept. Have We Met manages to meet somewhere between those disparate Y2K reference points and Destroyer’s own area of expertise, gliding deftly into territory that marries the old strident Destroyer with the new, aged crooning one of late.
Release date January 31, 2020 – Preorder Now (inlcuding limited Peak color vinyl).
Denver, Colorado songwriter, Jeff Cramer, is releasing his debut solo record, Northern 45, 01/25/2019. The first three of four singles, “Forgive” , “Legend of Bo Tim”, and “Big Man’s World” debuted September 26, on PopMatters, October 18, on Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine, and November 16, on The Bluegrass Situation.
Northern 45 features 11 original tracks written at various outposts from along the northern 45th parallel, a cover of Townes Van Zandt’s “Colorado Girl”, and Grammy award-winning talent throughout.
Recorded at the Bombshelter recording studio in Nashville, TN, often described as an “analog paradise” and home to award-winning records from the Alabama Shakes, Margo Price, and more, Jon Estes, bassist for John Paul White, Abigail Washburn, among many others, produced the record to analog tape and played bass and keys. Guitars include Sadler Vaden of Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Jeremy Fetzer of Steelism, and Spencer Cullum Jr. from Miranda Lambert’s band. Dave Racine of Jim Lauderdale’s band plays drums; Molly Parden sings backing vocals.