LESLIE HELPERT – WHEN SMART GIRLS DO STUPID THINGS

When Smart Girls Do Stupid Things

Artist : Leslie Helpert

Release Date : March 4, 2014

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

Dave Bianchi: Production, Sound-design, Recording/Engineering
Charlie Wilson: Recording, Post-Production Mixing, Mastering

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Returning to Barcelona in November of 2011, Leslie recorded this as a sort of score to a film, or a concept album. She spent one month before working in the studio with Dave field-recording the streets of Barcelona and turning the sounds of the city (street cleaners, bicycles, pedestrians, festivities) into beats and textures and base tracks for the song structures. During pre-production, Leslie wrote various thematic dialogues for the EP and recorded people reading in their own mother tongue. She wanted the album to be part parody, part emotive exploration… and what you have is “When Smart Girls Do Stupid Things”….

 

  • Leslie Helpert: Composition, Lyric, Dialogue, Monologue, Sound Design, Pre-production recording, Midi Synth, All Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Percussion, Vocals
  • Oriol Roca: Drums
  • Miguel Serna Dominguez: Contrabass and Electric Bass
  • Fran Bartlett: Cello
  • Sinead Savage: Backup Vocals, Peaches
  • Danny Lippitt: Backup Vocals, Peaches
  • Duffy O’Brick: Monologue, Peaches, Vocals on last track: “Tro(out)”

 

Spoken Dialogues: Antoine Casteignau, Eila van Reck, Amanda Jayne Wright, Andrea Cirotto

 

Technical and creative support: Leonardo Aldrey, Samuel Watkins Fisher, Taylor Rankin, Patrick Ferguson, C.K. Koch, Count Kellam, Yann de Kéroullas

 

www.helperttheagency.com

MARC MENA QUARTET – CAN’T FIGHT AGAINST ANTS

Can’t Fight Against Ants

Artist : Marc Mena

Release Date : February 16, 2010

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

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A live session of Marc Mena’s music recorded live at the Emergency Room studio in Barcelona.

 

  • Marc Mena : trumpet
  • Sergi Felipe : sax, flute
  • Miguel Serna : bass
  • Oriol Roca : drums

DAVE BIANCHI – THE SUBURBS OF SALT

The Suburbs of Salt

Artist : Dave Bianchi

Release Date : March 30, 2010

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

Recorded and mixed by Dave Bianchi at Emergency Room Studio (Barcelona). All songs written, arranged, and produced by Dave Bianchi, except Nerves (Amanda Jayne), Bricklessness (Duffy O’Brick), and God (Tori Amos)

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For The Suburbs of Salt (2010), Dave Bianchi decided to simplify – Salt was recorded with a band of just 10 musicians. Strings, horns, orchestration, the incredible drum work of Oriol Roca, and a guest vocal slot from singer/songwriter Leslie Helpert; the album also features a cover of the Tori Amos song “God,” as well as original recordings of Amanda Jayne’s “Nerves” and “Bricklessness” written by british poet and artist Duffy O’Brick.

 

  • Dave Bianchi : guitars, voice, piano, random instruments
  • Oriol Roca : drums
  • Ivo Saint : violin, viola
  • Sasha Agranov : cello
  • Miguel Serna : double bass, electric bass
  • Leslie Helpert: vocals
  • Paul Sessions : tuba
  • Yally Streett : bassoon
  • Antonia Tejeda : baroque recorder
  • Marc Mena : trumpet

 

www.whatabout-music.com

DAVE BIANCHI – BABY DISCO

Baby Disco

Artist : Dave Bianchi

Release Date : January 28, 2009

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

Recorded, mixed and produced by Dave Bianchi at Emergency Room Studio (Barcelona). All songs written by Dave Bianchi except People Are Strange (The Doors)

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Baby Disco (2009) was Dave’s first full-length album, with a featured cover of The Doors’ “People Are Strange”. The version had national radio play, with rock legend Alice Cooper humorously claiming on his own radio program Nights with Alice Cooper that ‘there’s nothing stranger than Dave’. The single “That Stare” had an accompanying video, directed by Laurent Briet, who helmed videos for the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Radiohead, Death Cab For Cutie, Tori Amos, and many more. The 21-piece orchestra on this album truly highlights Dave’s arranging and orchestration skills…

 

  • Dave Bianchi : guitars, rhodes, piano, voice, vibraphone
  • Maru DiPace : acoustic guitars, harp
  • Oriol Roca : drums
  • Miguel Serna : bass
  • Sasha Agranov : cello, saw
  • Emma Gawlinski : flute, sax
  • Sam Watson : clarinet
  • Brian Bender : trombone
  • Ivo Saint : violin, viola
  • Amanda Jayne : accordion
  • Daniel Da Lança : backup vox “Vicious Game”
  • Daniel Gil : electric guitar “That Stare”
  • Clara Peya : piano “Last Tango”
  • Emiliano Roca : bowed double bass “Baby Disco”
  • Mû : simbi “DH Hell”
  • Daiho : toys

AMANDA JAYNE – LUNATICS IN BLOOM

Lunatics in Bloom

Artist : Amanda Jayne
Release Date : April 23, 2013
Label : Whatabout Music

Format: CD

Produced and mixed by Dave Bianchi at The Emergency Room studio

Mastered by Kelly Hibbert

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Five years after her debut album ‘Swoon,’ this American songstress and accordion player brings us 10 new songs from her twisted mind. ‘Lunatics in Bloom‘ features her band The Murder of Crows, as well as collaborations from renowned Italian experimental musician Paolo Angeli.

 

  • Amanda Jayne:  vocals, accordion, guitar
  • Oriol Roca:  drums
  • Miguel Serna: bass
  • Paco Méndez:  banjo, guitar
  • Sasha Agranov: cello
  • Christoph Mäcki Hamann: violin
  • Marc Mena: trumpet
  • Claudia Gómez:  keys
  • Joan Viñals: ukulele, guitar on ‘Boombox’
  • Paolo Angeli: guitars on ‘One Continuous Bend’ and ‘Reignite’
  • Dave Bianchi: french horn

 

www.amandajaynemusic.com

Press

 

Amanda Jayne nos ha hecho esperar casi 5 años entre su Swoon y esta segunda grabación, pero ha merecido la pena esperar porque Lunatics in bloom (Whataboutmusic-2013) es otra joyita.

Si en Swoon Amanda recreó un sonido propio, entre música teatral y folk funambulista, en su nuevo trabajo sigue siendo Amanda Jayne, pero huele diferente. Si el sonido de Swoon se organizaba alrededor del acordeón de Amanda, en Lunatics in bloom, a partir de la tercera o cuarta canción, la guitarra acústica toma protagonismo y nos soprende gratamente con canciones de una Amanda reinventada, arropada por una banda de lujo, un privilegio de músicos: Claudia Gomez al teclado, juguetes varios, voces y percusiones, Miguel Serna al bajo, Dani Carbonell y Paco Mendez, de Dúmbala Canalla (grupo del que Amanda fué la acordeonista) al clarinete y guitarra y banjo, respectivamente, Emma Gawlinski, la flautista de Gadjo, Christoph Mäcki Hamann, violinista del grupo alemán Apparat, Joan Viñals(Illuminata) a la guitarra acústica y ukelele, Sasha Agranov, virtuoso del violoncelo y la sierra musical (Selva de Mar, Circus Delirium, P.O.G. etc…), Marc Mena, genial a la trompeta, el magnífico Oriol Roca(P.O.G., Giovanni di Domenico) a la batería, y el monstruo de la guitarra sarda tuneada, Paolo Angeli(P.O.G., Paolo Angeli). Una banda más que de lujo que le permite la orquestación sofisticada que es el sello de Amanda Jayne.

Esta chica, nacida en un pueblo de las afueras de Filafelfia -y que a pesar de ser todavía muy joven lleva ya entre nosostros casi 13 años-, es posiblemente uno de los personajes más interesantes de nuestro panorama porque no se trata de una cantautora al uso, sino de un músico y letrista diferente, creadora de un mundo propio, entre el sueño y la pesadilla surreal-no en vano la primera canción se titula “El sonambulista”, -una especie de sonámbulo en la cuerda floja-, que se desarrolla sobre armonías intrincadas y melodías fuera de lo común, lustrosas por la producción de Dave Bianchi, alma mater de Whataboutmusic, la escudería de la mayoria de los músicos que acompañan a Amanda en Lunatics in bloom.

Todo en el disco es exquisito, incluído el cuidado grafismo a cargo de Ombra Estudi, con ilustraciones de Aaron Farrington (www.aaronfarrington.com) y Jessika Flint, un cuidado que a veces se ningunea y que en los tiempos que corren es un importante motivo para adquirir la joya física, tangible, diseñada como obra de arte conceptual. Jordi Torrent, Atiza (June 2013)

 

En 2007 apareció Swoon, el álbum debut de Amanda Jayne. Fue un verdadero éxito. Con canciones comoElastic Bones y Nine Whole Lives cambió la escena musical underground de Barcelona. No fueron pocos los conciertos que vieron Amanda como protagonista después de Swoon. Y todos fueron una fiesta. Con esa mezcla de folk, swing, pop y canción de autor y con ese aire que sabe a circo Amanda Jayne consiguió enamorar a muchos. Luego vino el silencio. La cantante, compositora, acordeonista y guitarrista
americana desapareció de las escenas por unos años. Muchos nos preguntamos qué había pasado. Muchos, sobre todo, nos preguntamos si Amanda Jayne pisaría otra vez algun escenario.

Pues, ahora tenemos la respuesta. Amanda Jayne ha vuelto con un nuevo disco. El título es Lunatics In Bloom, producido por la Whatabout Music de Dave Bianchi, que ya había producido Swoon, y financiado con éxito en Kickstarter. Lunatics in bloom es un álbum en que Amanda nos lleva en otro viaje en un mundo compartido por sonambulistas, pajaros, recuerdos y mucho más. Un álbum en que, como de costumbre, Amanda se deja acompañar por otros músicos de la talla de Claudia Gomez (teclado, piano, glocken spiel, percusiones), Sasha Agranov (violonchelo, singing saw), Marc Mena (trompeta), Miguel Serna (bajo) y Oriol Roca (batería) y en que puede contar con la participación especial del músico sardo Paolo Angeli a la guitarra clásica. Steven Forti, Outsidersmucia (June 2013)

LESLIE HELPERT – ULU

Ulu

Artist : Leslie Helpert

Release Date : November 24, 2009

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

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On Ulu Helpert conspired with musicians from Spain, Greece, Guinea, Israel, Portugal and California to add cello, harp, Gaida (Greek bagpipes), upright and electric basses, vocals, trumpet and drum-kit to her musings. Helpert’s musicality comes through on the release in the form of guitar, Rhodes piano, electric bass, percussion, beatboxing, and her effusive vocals. Throughout Ulu, Helpert draws you in with her intoxicating style, using music a modality to deliver art into the moment. “Young Coconut Water”, the EP’s single, embodies this dreamy elegance.

 

“An ULU is an all-utilitarian tool Inuit women inherit to carry out many tasks in their daily lives, from chiseling ice for igloos to cutting their children’s hair. whatever dowry a man is promised in wedding an inuit woman, and whatever possessions she must hand over to him, no one can take— desire nor request—her Ulu.
I traipsed to Barcelona, stumbled into intoxicating love and adventure, wrestled burglars, buffered my immune system: made this EP with Dave Bianchi on Barcelona’s label Whatabout Music.” Leslie Helpert

 

  • Leslie Helpert: electric and acoustic guitars, vocals, random organ, noise
  • Oriol Roca: drums
  • Giulia Valle : double bass
  • Miguel Serna : bass
  • Nicholas Talvola : trumpet
  • Mû : vocals
  • Sasha Agranov : cello
  • Dimitris from greece : guida

 

www.helperttheagency.com

MAARTEN SWAAN – WRITE ME NOTES

Write Me Notes

Artist : Maarten Swaan

Release Date : May 1, 2010

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

Recorded and mixed by Dave Bianchi at Emergency Room Studio (Barcelona). All songs written, arranged, and produced Maarten Swaan

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The debut EP from Melou guitarist/songwriter Maarten Swaan. After the breakup of Melou, Maarten decided to go solo, writing a group of songs inspired by the psychedelic rock bands of the late 60s and early 70s. A beautiful concept album, classic sounding with unique vocal arrangements.

 

  • Maarten Swaan: vocals, guitars, piano
  • Miguel Serna: double bass, electric bass
  • Oriol Roca: drums
  • Sasha Agranov: cello
  • Nick Talvola: trumpet
  • Àngela Llinares: violin

TAL BEN ARI – SHEELÁ

Sheelá

Artist : Tal Ben Ari

Release Date : December 18, 2012

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

Recorded and mixed by Dave Bianchi at The Emergency Room (Barcelona)

Mastered by Kelly Hibbert

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The debut album from Israeli-born singer and songwriter Tal Ben Ari “Tula” featuring musicians from Africa, Brazil, Spain, Israel, France, Italy, Argentina, and Cuba.

Sheelá truly crosses genres.

 

  • Tal Ben Ari – voice, acoustic guitar, calimba
  • Joao Oliveira – acoustic and electric guitar
  • Martin Laportilla – bass
  • Paolo Angeli – guitar on ‘Corsicana’
  • Oriol Roca – drums
  • Dídac Ruiz – percussion
  • Omer Liechtenstein – piano
  • Mû – voice on ‘Shalva’
  • Man Ex Maqina – voice on ‘Ahavad Hadasa’
  • Miguel Serna – stand up bass on ‘Corsicana’
  • Rocky Albero – trumpet
  • Sasha Agranov – cello and saw
  • Ivo Saint – violin

 

www.talbenarimusic.com

SHAANAN STREETT – TOVA (A GOOD PROJECT)

Tova (A Good Project)

Artist : Shaanán Streett
Release Date : March 2, 2014
Label : The Eighth Note
Format : CD

Recorded and produced by Dave Bianchi at Emergency Room Studios, Barcelona

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Album notes from Shaannan Strett:

 

“I first started writing this project in august of 2005, three short months after my sister’s death. I remember clearly how terrible I was feeling, how drained of optimism and hope I was. I also remember, that upon sharing my feelings of emptiness and despair with those closest to me, the common reply would usually be that the only thing that can really help me with my pain – is time. It was for this reason that I started writing “the good project”. I started writing so i could see if everyone around me was right. if time can really assist in easing ones’ pain. In order to make my “experiment” a “scientific” one, I set myself rules- one poem per month. no more, no less. I managed to obey my rules throughout (almost) an entire year. I wrote, and the time passed. The time passed, and I wrote. Month after month the poems appeared august, september, october… and “the good project” started unfolding before my eyes…
A short while after completing the poetry part of the project, it dawned on me that i should try and get these poems composed. and so I did. I worked alongside three of my favorite living Israeli musicians (Shlomi Shaban, Berry Saharoff and Chava Alberstein) for approximately 2 more years until i finally had sketches of all twelve songs. to be honest, by this time I was rather satisfied. I was happy with the poems and I was happy with the songs they had become. I felt no need to go ahead and record them properly, “the songs are doing just fine in my computer” I thought to myself. “I like them just the way they are”, but fate decided to intervene.
In late 2011 the young sister of my friend and colleague was found dead in her apartment. While trying to condole him, and searching for words, I heard myself say that the only thing that can really help, is time. It was at that moment I realized that “the good project” must be recorded.
The recording of “the good project” took place in The Emergency Room studio in Barcelona during march of 2013 under the supervision of the incredible Dave Bianchi. Musicians from various nations took part in the recordings.

It is my belief that the outcome, though being a testimony of my personal tragedy, may prove to assist many others who have lost a loved one.”

 

  • Shaannan Strett: vocals
  • Arecio Smith: keyboards
  • Oriol Roca: drums
  • Miguel Serna: double bass, electric bass
  • Lisa Bause: violin
  • Tal Ben Ari: vocals
  • Nick Talvola: trumpet
  • Marc Mena: trumpet
  • Sasha Agranov: violoncello
  • Mathieu Aupitre: saxophone
  • Pablo Wayne: percussion
  • Marteen Swaan: vocals, guitar
  • Dudush Klemes: keyboards
  • Shlomi Alon: flute

 

shaananstreett.com

Press

 

Tova – A Good Project is a lot more than just a rap album, it is a living testimony of the journey that Shaanan Streett (the author) went through in the year after his young sister died from cancer.

Shaanan Streett is an israeli singer and song writer. He is the lead singer of the israeli successful band – ‘Hadag Nahash‘. ‘Tova – A Good Project’ his is second solo album, and the first one to be in english.

I heard about ‘Tovaa – A Good Project’ from a friend, I knew that it is about his personal struggle after his sister death. But I had to hear the powerful emotional texts to really understand what the album is about.

Shaanan described the album as an experiment to see if time can indeed ease the pain like he was told after her death. In the third month since her death he decided to write one song every month for a year. After he was finished writing all the songs he composed them along with some other famous and respectable israeli artists, such as Shlomi Shaban, Berry Saharoff and Chava Alberstein. It took another two years until he had the sketches for all the songs. But only after he found him self comforting his friend, by saying that ‘the time will ease the pain’. he decided to record it in a studio and export it as an album. the album released on february 2014, almost nine years after his sister death.

The album contain 12 songs, that were written each month for a year except april, instead there are early may and late may. And it’s cover representing his sister were gone from his family but her memories still remain. (they were three brothers and a sister)

You can truly feel Shaanan’s pain with emotional lyrics such as – ‘i realize that memories with missing details are like memories that are destined to be doomed’ (August) and ‘optimism seems to slip between my fingers like soap’ (July).

Shaanan truly evolving during the album, at the beginning of the album he is melancholy and having hard time dealing with his sister death ‘i bury myself with work pile it on stretch myself to the limit 18,19 hour days’ (september), ‘paranoid scared frightened terrified’ (october) and by the end of the album he is may not be happy, but he feels in control – ‘At least I know I can cope’ (July).

During the making of the album, two music video were released for the two singles – July and February.

I highly recommends this album. It is an unique combination between deep, emotional and painful lyrics to interesting composition decisions.You should defiantly hear this album. Yeerful (December 2014)

SAMANTHA DE SIENA – HERE INSIDE

Here Inside

Artist : Samantha de Siena

Release Date : May 4, 2010

Label : Whatabout Music

Format : CD

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It’s easy to imagine Samantha De Siena lost amongst the cobbled streets of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, laughing at the moon and piecing together the eight little gems that make up this bohemian dreamer’s sublime debut album, Here Inside. It’s very difficult not to fall to your knees at her feet while listening to a piece as delicate as I’m Coming. It almost sounds like a subtle mixture between the most transparent of Beth Gibbons and the most disconcerting of Cat Power.

 

  • Samantha de Siena / voice, acoustic guitar
  • Ismael Dueñas: piano, rhodes
  • Maru Di Pace: harp, acoustic guitar
  • Ivo Saint: viola, violin, handsaw, spoken word Here inside
  • Sasha Agranov: cello, saw
  • Nicholas Dominic Talvola: trumpet, flugel horn
  • Miguel Serna Dominguez: double bass, electric bass
  • Oriol Roca: drums
  • Mû: bells, pan
  • Sebastian Crispo: slide guitar
  • Borja Duñó: electric guitar
  • Marc Curcio: electric guitar
  • Danny ‘the Lip’ Lippitt: harmonica
  • Amanda Jayne: accordion
  • Paul Sessions: tuba
  • Dave Bianchi: glockenspiel
  • Pablo Arias: backing vocals
  • Rizumik: beatbox, voice, acoustic guitar

 

www.samanthadesiena.com

Press

 

A compilation of songs, as fragile and delicate as her voice, enriched with exuberant arrangements which carry us into a universe as luscious as a greenhouse garden… Her music, which isn’t easy to classify, reminds us of Joanna Newsom’s dreamy folk. Time Out Magazine (June 2010)

 

Singer-songwriter debuts with an evocative and beautifully unique voice. The music matches perfectly, reminding us of the graceful way in which Tom Waits dishevels his own albums. El Periódico (September 2010)

 

Folk, coloured by strong influences of jazz, accompanied with delicate arrangements, together paint the beautiful picture that characterises this composer. Her voice at times reminds us of Beth Gibbons from the nineties, and at other times echoes Cat Power in her first albums. Here Inside is an elegant exercise in style, and a wonderful demonstration of the spell that was cast over this city, as it gave birth to new talent within each music genre. Mondosonoro (November 2010)

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