Ryan’s Reviews: Demos II by Hippo Campus

Hippo CampusDemos II – (indie alternative)

Hippo Campus album Demos II is a collection of material that came to life during the sessions around the band’s most recent album Bambi, and includes such fan favorites and live staples as “No Poms,” “Chapstick,” and “Joy.” This album is a window into the creative process that is album making. It allows a glimpse into the different changes that songs take on to eventually become what we know as the finished product. Demos II is an eclectic map of stories and recurring motifs that make this reel of “demos” feel more like a finished album. The album is fun to listen to and will keep you stomping your feet and grooving with it for at least the rest of 2019. While the music from this album would later become Bambi, it is just as great to listen to and it is interesting to compare the two releases.

Here’s what the band had to say about the album: “When we made plans to release Demos II, it felt like this incredibly cathartic purge. So we decided not only to include the songs that would eventually become Bambi, but also include other things we were writing and working on over the summer of 2017 and the winter of 2018. It means you can hear a pretty expansive document of where we were creatively throughout the process.”

This record is fantastic and could not be more highly recommended. Check them both out on any major platform!

Ryan’s Reviews: Omoiyari by Kishi Bashi

Kishi Bashi Omoiyari – (indie pop)

Kishi Bashi’s newest work, Omoiyari, which translates roughly from Japanese to mean “creating compassion towards others,” connects the difficult subject of the internment of the Japanese during WWII and mixes it with summery arrangements of acoustic instruments, modern pop, and indie styling to paint this entire sweet, yet melancholy world around the listener. The album touches on many different aspects of the internment, but in a unique way, to imply that the human spirit will continue through the most trying times. For example, “Summer of ’42” is a soft sweet song about a love growing inside one of these camps.

This album is Kishi Bashi’s most mature work, and was inspired by visiting the remains of many of these internment camps. As a Japanese American, this subject truly resonated with him to create what would be considered, a masterpiece. This is truly a summer album, but in a bittersweet way, considering the message presented, but the music is perfect to lay down at the end of a hot day and relax too. Continue reading “Ryan’s Reviews: Omoiyari by Kishi Bashi”

Video: Brayla plays BIRN Alive!

Brayla and band give a soulful R&B and Latin jazz-inspired serenade, exclusively here at the BIRN studios!


Brayla – Voice
Alec Winter- Keyboard
Fernando Felo Lopez- Percussion

Songs featured in this video: “Alright” and “10 Seconds.”


BIRN Alive is home to great live performances and insightful conversation every Saturday at 4:00 p.m. EDT on BIRN1.

Video: Danielle Ponder plays BIRN Alive!

Danielle Ponder, a vocalist and songwriter whose voice ranks with the best working in the industry today, performed April 20 on BIRN Alive.

In 2016 the soulful powerhouse singer released her debut EP Blow Out The Sun and has since performed around the world. This sensational singer lists powerful influences like Nina Simone, Big Mama Thornton, Shirley Chisholm, Cornel West and Lauryn Hill. Ponder opens her mouth to sing or speak and it’s readily apparent, there’s another name that belongs in that pantheon as well.

For more information on Danielle Ponder visit danielleponder.com. Instagram: @daniellepondermusic

BIRN Alive is home to great live performances and insightful conversation every Saturday at 4:00 p.m. EDT on BIRN1.


Video: Anna Clendening plays BIRN Alive!

Watch America’s Got Talent contestant and internet star Anna Clendening perform a acoustic version of “Bend & Break” on BIRN Alive!

Clendening first came to the public’s attention as a Vine star and later as a contestant on season 9 of America’s Got Talent. She has amassed over 89 million views on her YouTube channel and over 50 million streams on Spotify as of March 2019.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/annaclendening/

Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/user/annaclendening08

Twitter:  @annclendening

Her official site is here.

BIRN Alive is home to great live performances and insightful conversation every Saturday at 4:00 p.m. EDT on BIRN1.