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City cat collective

City Cat Collective is a hub where musicians from all over the world, come together and support one another in our quest to get our music heard! With members in different regions and continents, the strength of CCC is our reach. Every one of our members is an ambassador to our mission.

Our mission is simple: "Work together and to support one another. To seek out talent and find other likeminded artists" - City Cat Collective

Bloggers Chronicles: GO TO THIS SHOW!!! #004 Tess Posner's Alchemy release party. 

It's going down tonight at the Knockout in SF!!! Tess Posner, Joyce Lee, Kate Ramsey and Sophia Prise will be hitting the stage and bringing their dark alternative / rock n roll tunes!!!

Doors at 9pm. Bring beer money and a good vibe.

Links provided for the artist's. Get aquainted and I will see you there:)

Tess Posner  | Instagram

Kate Ramsey | Instagram

Joyce Lee       | Instagram 

Sophia Prise  | Instagram

CCC EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Ladies and Gentlemen... Nene's Butler. 

When we began City Cat Collective, I knew I wanted to reach out to Nene's Butler Presents for an interview. Navigating the seas of self-promotion, one starts to get a sense of who's friendly, who isn't. The quality of the blog also becomes exposed. All of a sudden, submitting or avoiding certain blogs becomes routine. Being added to Nene's Butler Presents blog with an Everything But The Everything submission is something I always look forward to.

With further ado… Ladies and gentlemen, it's our interview with Nene's Butler Presents!!!

CCC - How did you get started and when was the moment you went all in on being a music blogger?
NB - I started to discover platforms like groover, muso, or submithub around 2020. As an artist, I often got rejected by “good song, BUT …” on these platforms. I wondered why they were all so fixated on one sound, one genre, etc. Why didn’t bloggers enjoy all the great indie music out there? This was the reason I decided to develop my own music blog, which was/is not based on specific genres, and which expressed my love for music. I wanted to give unheard musicians a chance to be heard.

CCC - Do you have a music background? If so, tell us about it.
NB - NenesButler presents is the name of my blog and Nene’s Butler is my artist name. The music I create is a mixture of minimalistic electro with touches of 80s/90s house and the early days of techno, and a breeze of electro body music. I am definitely influenced by Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode, Front 242, but I also love to listen to Cure, Duran Duran, Oasis, Blur, Joy Division, The Prodigy, Everything but the Everything :) , … I love all the post-punk stuff, punk itself, Britpop was amazing, UK garage, indie pop, indie rock, … and do not forget my all-time favorite The Beatles (my first musical love) … and so on.

CCC - I noticed your website says to submit to your blog via Groover, why is that your go to and what do you think about the other services like Submithub, Musosoup?
NB - We find Groover to be the most effective for us. We have a dashboard with many music submissions that want to be on the blog. Muso is also good, but it takes a lot of time. It requires us to write an offer to the artists and then wait. I used to use Muso a lot in the past. Now, I use it to find new music and if I enjoy it, I put it on our playlists. We are also trying out mysphera and droptrack at the moment. Sometimes, we receive something from sharetoPro. Submithub rejected us :).

CCC - How do you feel about paying for PR from an artist perspective?
NB - As an artist, I have seen this side as well. I also invest in Groover, Muso, and in earlier days, Submithub. I think all the platforms offer a great opportunity to get your music heard. In my opinion, it’s part of the business to invest some time and money in PR. I always say 50-100 bucks per single are enough for my style of music. I would not want to spend more money, but this is a personal decision that every artist has to make for themselves.

CCC - What advice would you give to a young band who wants to get started?
NB - From The Blog view - Please do not contact us or any other blogger like this: This is our/my new single, it’s a banger! Nothing more or less (we sometimes get this). Or sending a “mass-mail”. The best chance to get featured on NenesButler presents is to include a short bio, something about the song, and all social media channels + streaming channel/link + 2 pictures (good resolution) (simply an EPK). The sound quality does not have to be 100% perfect, because this is, in my opinion, a question of money. But if you invest some time by yourself in mixing and mastering, it should fit for the first releases.

CCC - What do you do for fun (snowboarding, bicycling, beanie baby collecting, etc...)?
NB - I have a five-year-old daughter, that's fun enough :)

CCC - If someone gave you $10,000 to go on a vacation or go splurge at the fanciest restaurant in your closest major city, which would you choose?
NB - I would invest in music, rather than going on vacation or to a restaurant. I am playing with the idea of creating a Tape Label in the future to release a Sampler every quarter with the best Indie Artists of "NenesButler presents".

CCC - What's on the horizon for Nene's Butler Presents?
NB - On the horizon of the blog, there is definitely another playlist (currently, we have our "Best of", "electro", "singer/songwriter", "heavy guitars", "postpunk + indie rock", "femArtists"). Maybe we will add instrumental/chill or darkwave/gothic, let’s see. We will also invest more in ads to bring all the featured artists to the forefront.

Follow Nene's Butler Presents on all platforms!!

Website | Instagram | Facebook

James Beastly adds another standout single to his collection with 'Ghost Species'  

I'm sure I've stated this a few times, I made a list of artists/people/groups to highlight on City Cat Collective that participate in the music world. Today we check off another name from that list and highlight James Beastly. James is a seasoned music veteran who I'm assuming has played music most of his life. Not an assumption I want to throw out like Oprah Winfrey does cars, but his approach and execution to music exudes experience. Making the jump from band member to music producer, James adds 'Ghost Species' to his stellar collection as a solo artist. 

This record is downright sneaky. As a matter of fact, it's a complete setup. The verse roles out in indie alternative rock fashion. Expected, sounds good, go on... To the arriving chorus, there's a hollowed howling chant. This transition made me feel like we went from a narrow country road merging into a four-lane highway. When we make the lap and repeat the process as music does, our newfound familiarity strengthens the groove. With two passes completed through the verse/chorus, I was beginning to wonder if there was another gear. James Beastly does not disappoint.
This is where the song explodes. The unleashed and charged electric guitar lead outro comes rolling in like the second vinyl record in an epic DJ mix. That excitement when two styles, two records come together and create something new is just like chocolate and milk becoming chocolate milk. Absolutely thrilling. James does the right thing; he steps on the gas and does not relinquish the throttle until we've reached the destination, he wants to take us. 
Your vessel is ready. All aboard!!! 
Keep up with and follow James Beastly and… peep the track right now!!!






Hustler's hustle. London's very own, Sparkayly presses on.  

Social media is a peculiar thing. With millions of people mingling around, there's no telling where a new connection might come from. At some point, I crossed paths with London artist and all-around music hustler, Sparkayly. I believe we both follow Toronto's Melotika and that's how the mighty algorithm did its thing. Through her posts I saw an artist that is making it happen on all fronts. As she toils on various music projects (songwriter, magazine producer, graphic artist, artist promotion), I wanted to highlight her digital imprint, Surge FX Magazine.

Using the ISSUU platform, Sparkayly releases her monthly magazine. Music reviews, blurbs, interviews, and ads fill its pages, very reminiscent of "zine" but more buttoned up. Her signature style stamp's everything she touches. Sparkayly's style is a bubbly gothy mysteriousness wrapped in a cloak of black, red, purple and pink colors. 
Via sound waves, Sparkayly's style is a mix of Anthem EDM and pop punk. Her use of big rave synth's evokes memories of packed underground raves in SF. The tight distorted guitars and drum patterns she uses are a'la 90's punk rock.

Throughout 2023, Sparkayly has been releasing her magazine and a stream of singles. 'Love Gun' is a standout track in her collection. I must mention there are two versions of 'Love Gun' and they are both dope, but I like the more electronic version a little more. We've included her latest release 'Candy Scars' (RedStonedDog Remix) for your immediate introduction. 
Keep up with Sparkayly !!!


Brighton's Knife Bride "Nu-Gothika" masterpiece 'smother (make me suffer)' has arrived!! 

Crazy to think that there's musicians playing their hearts out in successful projects who don't love the music they play. Such was the case with the members of this yet to be formed band. They all knew each other from playing their local scene in Brighton UK. Two of them are cousins. One day, they collectively decided to make music they loved. That day Knife Bride was born. Since day one the group has been on a tear, playing coveted British venues and festivals. Keeping the momentum going Knife Bride has released 'smother (make me suffer)', the lead single with a corresponding music video from their upcoming EP.

There is a lot going on with this single. A controlled chaos of sorts. The drum patterns are spectacular. They feel spontaneous yet are as detailed and unique as any instrument played on the track. How the song opens up in the chorus makes me feel like I'm standing in the eye of a hurricane, enjoying a moment of serenity before getting ripped to shreds. Adding to this feeling of impending doom are the vocals, hypnotizing us like a siren's song luring us to our own demise.

This song is an absolute banger. Samples, massive guitar riffs, crisp double bass drums all ooze Nu-Metal but Knife Bride's injection of emo goth sexual elements create something all their own.  They refer to their music as "Nu-Gothika" and I am officially, 100% on board.

Keep up with and follow Knife Bride!!!


New Music? Yes, Please! #005 The Hot Takes  

The Hot Takes continue to ascend with their killer stage show and solid music releases. Their latest single ‘Up All Night’ is pure rock roll played from the heart. The song has a nostalgic feel and borrows from the best from the early 80's. How we are greeted by the drums and then the catch the buzz of that electric guitar is reminiscent of ‘Love Stinks’ by The J. Geils Band. A bit of ‘I Love Rock N Roll’ by Joan Jett and The Black Hearts pokes through as well. The magic is always in the songwriting and vocal delivery which is why I get a sense of ‘Summer Of 69’ by Bryan Adams. 

When a singer is in a zone, you can hear the belief in their voice. In this zone a singer can transcend themselves into whatever place they want to take their listeners to. Jared locks in and takes us to rock n roll euphoria.

Catch ‘Up All Night’ with us now and keep up with The Hot Takes on Facebook, Instagram, Spotify!!!





New Music? Yes, Please! #004 Oakland Ghosts  

In March of 2022, Oakland Ghosts began to roll out two singles at a time. A dual double single release if you will. Their newest release titled 'IV' has three singles. We'll be highlighting 'Under The Needle' and have included it for your convenience. See how nice we are...

That bass tone used is the bass tone I always wanted as a bass player growing up. Bright and punchy just like a fresh pack of Ernie Ball Slinky bass strings. A distorted guitar plays behind the bassline on the second half of the verses bringing static fuzz tv imagery. The song's layout is something to note and an absolute highlight. For example, the chorus only plays twice and how we get to it both times is different. Maybe I've been conditioned to "let's just repeat this" style of writing for far too long but it I did love the journey 'Under The Needle' takes us on. 

There's a 90's grunge rock and '6 Underground' Sneaker Pimps vibe to the song. The horns are a key ingredient which color with matte paint dark tones. How the horns are sprinkled in via accents after their initial introduction is a great touch. It's a great track thats lowkey driving thanks to the songwriting. If you're on the move from place to place, play this track for the appropriate ambiance.

Keep up with and follow Oakland Ghosts on Spotify | Instagram | Facebook 

Bloggers Chronicles: The review: #001 IAMX , ContainHer at the DNA Lounge 

My homie and Everything But The Everything guitarist Ian Dowed had some plans for us (Sophia Prise and myself) last Wednesday night. The three of us haven't hung out recently and he got us tickets to see some guy who used to be in the Sneaker Pimps. This was another one of those "I don't care who's playing, I'm going" moments for me. Ian sent us links, but I didn't check them out. It was the company I was excited about, the show that was secondary in my mind. 

Fast forward and now we're at the DNA lounge. The vibe is goth and frankly I was a little confused as to how Sneaker Pimps and goth DNA fit together. Headlining the night was IAMX.  Since I did zero research, my curiosity level was at an all-time high.

Opening the show was ContainHer. I particularly enjoyed her performance for several reasons. First reason is I follow her on Instagram and have been wanting to see her live. She can sing. Anyone that follows her social media can tell you that. Watching how she worked the crowd, worked the songs and performed in full character was the highlight. She's a pro. She excelled in the spotlight, and it brought out the best in her. ContainHer's music is synth driven electronica with a message. 

The headliner quickly followed and from the first note till the last note of the third encore, I was captivated and inspired. First off, their costumes were futuristic, unique and strange. The drummer had a hat/mask a'la Donnie Darko. The bassist was in a printed spandex head covered full suit like an extra in the Fifth Element. The singer wore this crown/mask with a light placed on the center forehead. He looked like a futuristic Jesus here to save us from the second rapture.

Delayed sound clouds bellowed from the speakers, blanketing the audience in suspense. Thunderous floor toms boomed from the stage's left corner. The drummer put on a clinic on how to absolutely crush backing tracks. Every one of his hits were concisely delivered and gave the performance teeth. Going completely berserk was the bass player. She was all over that stage. Her hands played every note, her body gesticulated them.
Chris Corner who is IAMX behaved like a rock icon. Better yet a cult leader. His powerful vocals and their delivery are the Kool aid his follower's drink. He has some crazy case that almost looks like a small coffin filled with modules, knobs and lights which he uses to treat his voice. It reminded me of DJ's twisting nobs at the perfect time to enhance key moments in a mix, but he was doing it to his voice. I felt like I was watching a young David Bowie in action. 

That show was special. I've never seen a third encore be performed by a band. The music's delayed haze, powerful drumming and performance both physically and production wise was major festival level. I'm so happy to live in the Bay Area where amazingness happens every day of the week. Even on a Wednesday night. 

New Music? Yes, Please! #003 Randy Thomas and the Insecures 

Oakland's very own Randy Thomas and the Insecures are back with a new song and music video. Their new track ‘Need This’  is a bright gritty distortion laden raucous rock n roll excursion! The tracks energy makes us feel like we're at their live show, hanging in the green room and then off to the after party!! 

You'll have to see the video and hear the track!!! 


Skating by the Rockridge Bart station is a nice nod to the town.

Keep up with and follow Randy Thomas & the Insecures 

Bandcamp | Instagram | Youtube

Ride along the depths of post punk with Haneke Twins.  

In this modern world of branding and constant self-promotion, a quick visit to someone's social media is a direct window into their world. With one click, we can learn about a person's passions, projects, aspirations and endeavors. I met Stefanos via Muso soup. I began to follow him on Instagram where we now frequently cross paths. Upon these Insta run ins, I noticed he plays guitar for Haneke Twins. There's a link to the bands website which I followed. Haneke Twins is based out of Switzerland. They rock! Their brand of post punk accompanied with a baritone singer immediately reminded me of Interpol. In 2018 the band debuted their self-titled EP, follow by 2020's Astronaut extended EP. Most recently the band released a new single and corresponding music video 'Lights Off' part 2.

I want to focus on the single's "River" and "In My Head" as the standout tracks for you to check out from the Astronaut EP.

Song 4. 'River' - This track is classic dark rock / post punk. When listening my imagination whisks off to some sort of away from home midnight excursion involving trains and warm fashionable clothing as I make my way from one station to the next. Perhaps it's the guitar parts and their various ways they reach our ears that give the track not only movement but excitement. 

Song 6. 'In My Head' - This cut has a delightful toe tapping bounce. Bright plucked bass strings peek throughout the song but their accents in the verses truly shine. There are two guitars playing two different melodies throughout the track weaving beautifully through the air like the U.S. Navy Blue Angels. The writing chops the band showcases is exemplary. It's the writing that takes us places, shuttles us along and shows us around. I believe this is the gem of the album.
What struck the most about Haneke Twins and their music is the musicianship, writing and execution. Everything is not only completely thought through and mapped out, but everything is picture perfect with depth. This band is a great reminder that great things happen outside of not only our cities and states but beyond our borders. I'll be keeping an eye for future releases from the group and as always, I'll be checking in on my new homie from the gram. 

We included the single 'In My Head' for your instant introduction:)

Keep up and follow Haneke Twins!!!




Awaken with Dear Banshee and their new LP, Wake Of Modern Life 

When we started this blog, we said we would try not over mention the same artist. Dear Banshee and their output of amazing music has made it hard to follow that statement. Highlighting talent is what this blogs mission is all about, so game on!!! 
We previously featured ‘Rehoboam’, the bands lead single from their new LP, Wake Of Modern Life. That single is no doubt one of best tracks from the album but there's other's as well because of course there is. Let's go over a few.
Track 1. ‘One Last Sigh’ - How James and Chelsea's vocals tradeoff is gold, but the electronic components and their placement is what makes the track pop. This single for some reason reminds me of Tears For Fears.
Track 10. ‘TV Show’ - I heard the acoustic YouTube version before I heard the album's version, so I didn't know what to expect. First thing is obviously the presence of the drums. Second is the synth layers the band expertly weaves. These layers permeate our senses like a druggy hazy high that's got us hooked. Dear Banshee, is top of their class at producing a syrupy pensive wall of sound. Each brick of this wall is not made from storefront materials. No, it's much better than that. No wonder their music draws Radiohead comparisons.
Track 6. ‘The Bold Ones’ - I love this track, it's definitely my favorite which caught me off guard. There's a minimalist approach to this single. Upon arrival an arpeggiated flutter hangs in the air like Tinkerbell's pixie dust. What sounds like a bouncing rubber ball cues the tempo and disappears. Then, the percussion hits. The perfectly placed windows the vocals are sung in give the track a snowball avalanche effect, where momentum and density build with every passing moment.
We sent over a few questions to the band that came up during our listening process and without further adieu…
1. Was there a different mindset to recording your new LP, Wake Of Modern Life, or was it business as usual.
James: I enjoy approaching new recordings differently every time. The difference between this LP was that half of the album was done by rehearsing with the full band and the second half of the recording was all done on the computer. It was challenging for us but we made it work.
Chelsea: For the electronic songs, I had heard them for the first time when I walked into the studio for vocal tracking. It kept things live and interesting while still being challenging. 

2. As far as experimentation, is Dear Banshee open to experimentation or is that for other bands?
James: I love experimentation in music. Many of our influences are from the experimental genre. I think we definitely have a healthy balance of experimenting with different techniques and keeping things in the pop world. As far as being an experimental band, I don't think we are one. I'll leave it up to the audience to decide. 

3. Your "TV Show" Youtube acoustic performance was amazing, why did you choose that song?
Chelsea: TV Show is one of my favorites on the album and an acoustic version seemed very natural. 
James: Our second single being a live stripped down version of an album track gave our audience a small glimpse into our live performances. TV Show worked really well for this. We can't bring a full orchestra with us on tour but there are still five of us on stage making all of the layers live.  

4. Your partnership with Minor Birds is phenomenal, how did the two of you meet and how has the collaboration evolved since then?
Chelsea: James and I had been gigging together when Dear Banshee first started. Minor Birds played a show with Dear Banshee. When the pandemic came I had moved back to the Bay Area and reached out to him to collaborate and he asked me to join Dear Banshee. The first rehearsal we had together we wrote "Rehoboam" and the rest is history. 
James: I think Chelsea brings a lot of variation and nuance to the band. It feels new and exciting. 

5. What can we look forward to from Dear Banshee in the coming months?
Chelsea: We have a Pacific Northwest tour planned in early July.
James: After that we will be playing Bottom Of The Hill July 23rd, a venue Dear Banshee had planned on playing in 2020 but had to cancel due to the pandemic. We also have unreleased material that we did not include on the album because we felt that it didn't fit in with the songs. We are not sure when we will release it.




We wanted to thank Dear Banshee for taking time to answer our questions. We love their music and will be supporting them any way we can!!! 

Follow Dear Banshee on Spotify, Facebook, and Instagram!!! 

Bloggers Chronicles: GO TO THIS SHOW!!! #003 Everyone Is Dirty, Make Out Room: Thurs June Residence  

As much as I love to complain about FB, FB always seems to remind me of upcoming events I would otherwise completely miss. I need to stop my FB whining… Last Thursday evening, I got a reminder about the Thursday night residency at the Make Out Room in SF that Everyone Is Dirty is hosting.  I didn't really read the details and it didn't matter; I was going. It wasn't until my drive over that I started to wonder about the details. Was this a listening party for new music? Were there other bands playing? What was I going to walk into… 

Upon my arrival, there was a band on stage. I would describe their music as Primus meets the Dillinger Escape Plan's Option Paralysis LP.  A little unorthodox but very creative and super tight. The drummer would go from soft delicate jazz style drumming to heavy zero to 180 mph like a stolen Hellcat evading police. They had a couple of really great groove driven tracks that the crowd soaked up. The name of the band is Gumby's Junk, if you get a chance to check em out, do so.

Everyone Is Dirty hit the stage immediately after the opener and the show they put on was phenomenal!!! There's so much to describe and I tried to take in as much as I could. Before we get into the specifics, I just wanted to say that being a true headliner takes a combination of quality of songs, stage presence, individual member performance execution and that “it” factor that you either got or you don't. Everyone Is Dirty is a true headliner, 100%. 

Starting with the bass player. I'm convinced, he's a machine. He can't be human. If you told me Skynet sent back a terminator to kill Sarah Conor and also sent back a terminator to murder basslines, I would say, he's got to be that terminator. He murdered basslines. I don't think I heard one mistake. Big, round, complex basslines played with feel and dynamics, I was in awe. He used three fingers too, like an indie rock Robert Trujillo. Same for the drummer. Everything was on point, nothing was overplayed. Power was delivered when prescribed and that nuanced touch with delicate hands was showcased as well. The pair make for an unbelievable rhythm section.

The pair that are the face of the group, the lead singer and the guitarist have some real chemistry. While the lead singer clearly led the charge, the way the backup vocals bolstered the music's overall effect was truly memorable. The lead singer sang her heart out, there was no holding back. My biggest surprise was her violin performance and the array of sounds she covered. Through the weave of sounds, at times I would wonder “where is this amazing sound coming from?” and it was always the violin. Certain settings on her pedal board would at times deliver a huge lead guitar type solo sound, one might suspect they snuck a BC Rich on stage. Other times the violin's sound was so soft and gentle. I started to wonder if she also plays with the San Francisco Symphony when she's not fronting Everyone Is Dirty.

The band is going to be at the Make Out Room every Thursday for June. Make it down if you can and witness a true headliner work their magic. Like me you'll be a new fan, I'm certain of it.

Keep up with Everyone Is Dirty on Bandcamp, Instagram, Facebook!!!

Check out their single “Hand On Lunch” with us, song kindly provided:)

New Music? Yes, Please! #002 Moses Redwood 

I've known Moses Redwood for some time. We've always been into house music. Even though my focus has become rock music, I still hold house music close to my heart. Moses sent me a link to some of his tunes. The music is indie electronic, and his sample/sound selections are eclectic. ‘Chu Papa’ is the track the featured track and your link is kindly provided:) 

Moses Redwood doesn't follow; he leads his own way.

Check out ‘Chu Papa’ on Soundcloud!!!


New music? Yes, please! #001 Fake Your Own Death, Bad Gods EP 

Fake Your Own Death recently released a new four song EP, Bad Gods. The band has a great discography, and this new release adds another solid installment. Fans will be sure to enjoy the new tunes which always bridge high energy rock and roll and thought-provoking lyrics. Time to get caught up with the new tunes and go to their next show!!!


Keep up with Fake Your Own Death!!!




Oakland's Big Surprise new single 'Caesium' is music from the heart. 

Oakland's Big Surprise and their new single 'Caesium' take us further down a textured dreamy road but do so with 90's glory. The recording's straightforward approach gives the music space to resonate. A chunky distorted guitar anchors the track and becomes the rail cart to which all is built upon. Powering our voyage over hills and through valley's are the music's dynamics. At times, pulling us in like they're going to tell us a secret, then bold and loud like a proclamation declaration to the world.
It's the subtle things Big Surprise does that make the track pop. How Kathryn's gentle touch sweetens the thickened vocal line. The lead guitar notes work as prescribed, bringing ear candy accents while simultaneously facilitating the song's progression. My favorite nuanced subtlety can be found in the first half of the second verse. The drummer lands on the two count with a stick click, then on fourth with the snare. Thus, adding weight to the second hand of the verse that make the chorus pop that much more.
'Caesium' is a great blend of dreampop and 90's grit. The Pixies were the first to come to mind when I heard this song. Glycerine by Bush was the second. With more music on the way and more shows being booked, get to know another great local band who's doing music their way. Music from the heart. 
"Rock music for weird times" - Big Surprise

Keep up with Big Surprise!!!
Words: Izzy The Gent




City Cat Collective interviews Venus In Arms!!! 

When I got an early listen of “Fantasy” by Venus In Arms, I played the track over and over. Now that her new single is out everywhere, I can play it on repeat without having to refresh my Dropbox. “Fantasy” by Venus In Arms is an absolute gem of indie shoegaze. As I listened to the single, I wondered about how it came together and that's what our interview focuses on. 

We geek out with Oliva over the details of her new track. I hope you enjoy!!

Keep up and follow Venus In Arms on  Instagram, Spotify and of course !!!


Bloggers Chronicles: GO TO THIS SHOW!!! #002  

In our second edition of our Bloggers Chronicles we are highlighting an event at Bottom Of The Hill, SF. The Hot Takes and Strange Cities are bands we've covered here on City Cat so today's focus will be Treasures from SF who will be opening up the night. Lets go over the bill.


The Hot Takes - Having a successful night at headlining a bill at any venue for a local band is a big deal. The energetic Devo-ish band will certainly bring it this night just like they do every time they hit the stage. Go see them!!!

Main Support :

Strange Cities - The guys just came back from a short tour in England and have been firing on all cylinders for some time. It will be great to see them perform back at home on their home turf at BOTH. 


Treasures - I been following this band on social media for some time. They've been on my list of bands to go check out and now comes the perfect opportunity. They describe themselves as contemporary Rock N Roll. Great rock N roll bands from the past come to mind open my first listen. I pick up hints of the song's from the 70's (The Who), 80's (Thin Lizzy) and 90's (Blind Melon) in their music. This Thursay, we'll see them perform their brand of rock as they open up the night.

The new S/T EP by Niveles strikes with tsunami level force.   

Just my luck… I had the night off work and noticed The Spyrals were playing at Bottom Of The Hill. I hadn't seen Jeff from the Spyrals in years, so I went to the show. When I arrived, the opening band was about mid set. I grabbed a beer and found a spot to watch. This three-piece band had the crowd completely hypnotized. I too fell hard into hypnosis.  Who is this band? My curiosity grew by the second. I asked the bartender who they were and she pointed to a name on a flier. The band was Niveles.

The next day I was still in awe of what I witnessed, replaying my memories of their set. What struck me the most was how every note carried so much weight, so much emotion. When I got word of their new eight song S/T EP, I wondered if it would evoke those same feelings I felt at Bottom Of The Hill. The answer is a hard yes. 

First on my list of tracks to highlight from their new EP is “Hard Bill”. This song builds and builds until we reach the heavens and beyond. A key element to this single is the guitar parts which guide us on this journey. A sparsely strummed guitar, coily greets us before revealing its true colors. Those colors are revealed at the 1:33 mark when the distortion kicks on, punctuating the one and two count. Then they dig. At the 2:18 mark, an arpeggiated guitar arrives, hovering overhead like a flying saucer. With all systems go at the 2:38 mark, the lead guitar slams the throttle, propelling our rocket past earth's gravitational pull and into outer space. Can you hear me Major Tom!!!

With a comparable formula but different experience is the very next track "Party At BG's Haus". A big difference is how the bassline controls the feel of the song instead of the guitars. That bass tone is everything. The guitar flutters in the wings as it awaits its moment in the spotlight. When the distorted guitars arrive, the tenor changes and the song morphs like an Altered Beast on Sega Genesis. Controlled chaos ensues, I love the mayhem.

I found the final track to be the most memorable. "House Of Mirrors" wastes no time getting down to business. Delivering a haunting mystic are the delayed guitar notes in the verses. Those delayed guitar notes bait us. They position us to the place where the band's incoming wall of sound's impact will hit us like a tsunami. Big chords rain down over the sonorous rhythm section. We're thrown around in the wash like a surfer who's spilled at Mavericks. The force is real.

Again, I'm happy to report that how Niveles performs live is on par with how they're captured on tape. Each song's weight is felt through and through. As far as tones and vibe, their sound reminds me a little bit of Tool's "Sober". Their hypnotic, dark, menacing brand of music is undeniable. The way Niveles locks into a groove over minor chords, delayed guitars and perfectly placed samples is next level.  I feel extraordinarily lucky to have stumbled upon their music and even luckier to be able to deliver this exclusive music premiere.

Keep up with and follow Niveles on Instagram and Bandcamp but for now, peep “Hard Bill”, kindly included for your listening pleasure:)

Bloggers Chronicles: GO TO THIS SHOW!!! #001  

I've known the name for years but for whatever reason, never took a moment to listen to Everyone Is Dirty. When I saw that my friends from Fake Your Own Death were playing at the Kilowatt with Everyone Is Dirty, I knew the time had come. As part of CCC's Bloggers Chronicles Nightcap/Recap, I wanted to use the platform to highlight shows. Today we debut Bloggers Chronicles: GO TO THIS SHOW!!! #001

I was a regular at the Kilowatt and would often look up at the Noisepop posters. I would try to imagine a live show while shooting pool. The speakers were still up, hanging from the ceiling. I always wondered if it would happen again. It's happening thanks to a new group of owners and this Friday April 8th; Everyone Is Dirty and Fake Your Own Death will bring their music to the beloved Mission bar.

Everyone Is Dirty's sound is energetic and fun. There's a pop punk vibe that leads the charge, but I also hear some of the best from the 90's in the mix. Definitely some Smashing Pumpkins and of course some Nirvana's Bleach. Their creativity is on full display and every song feels like a "stand alone single". The band seems to attack from every angle. I can't imagine during the writing process any ideas being taken off the table. Until today I hadn't heard a note from the band and now, I'm officially a fan. 

We've covered Fake Your Own Death recently here and I added my favorite song of theirs "Bombs Don't Show Up". They were on our very first edition of Boggers Chronicles #001 and now they're part of this one. Please scroll down to their write up on Bloggers Chronicles #001 to catch our take from their show at Bottom Of The Hill.

Two great local bands, no cover, a legendary SF venue brought back to life... not sure why you wouldn't attend the show. Unless of course if you got to work, because I'm too old to move back in with my mother. Have fun at the show and buy Terry a drink for me!!!


Achilles Tenderloin's Tincture For Trouble LP is the tincture I needed.  

I was introduced to Achilles Tenderloin via an assignment. Soon after I began to follow him on the gram. I love the hustle, the dedication but most importantly his music. For City Cat, I have a list of songs and artists who I want to highlight. Achilles Tenderloin was on that list. With his 10-song full length release Tincture For Trouble, I knew I had to get to work.

I'll be the first to admit that I don't know Johnny Cash's music well enough to remotely suggest I'm a true fan but the style which Achilles Tenderloin plays with reminds me of Johnny Cash. In the end, along with talent and performance, it comes down to style. In a world filled with talented people, do you have a unique style that will set you apart from the pack. I believe Achilles Tenderloin does. 

"Torch Song" is a testament to that statement and the new LP's opening track. Taking us back to that early Ray Charles era with its boozy, toe tapping, head nodding ways. It's got some attitude, some spunk. The horn that plays throughout is pure gold. A great opening track.
The following three songs are slower paced and pensive but Achilles shifts gears with the 5th track "Don't Be Long". It's gentle swing and bright notes open the shades and let in the sun light. The string section brings the warmth one feels when those sun rays touch your skin. The guitar's "shaker's" rhythm and bright accents augment the lighthearted feel. The home run hit is the line "I would rather be kiss kiss, kiss, kiss kissing you". With that line, Achilles does the right thing and gives it to us twice in the song. That should be a rule for every songwriter, if it's good, give it to us again. Thank you, Achilles.

I highlighted as must listens the songs "Never Trust A Barber" and "Falls Thistlethwaite" and we're in luck because they play in that order.
Song 5 - Don't Be Long
Song 6 - Never Trust A Barber
Song7 - Falls Thistlewaite
What a great 1, 2, 3 punch!!!
Bluesy, dark and mysterious, the final track "Howlin At The Earth" does not disappoint. Fabricated images of 1930's mob crime fighting a'la Dick Tracy begin to spill from my imagination as the song plays. This single is the other side of the coin to what the LP's opening single gave us. Achilles Tenderloin's vocals ride the track like a paraglider. He swoops in and out, allowing the music to do the heavy lifting as he gracefully glides. What does it sound like? You're in luck, we've included it below for your immediate introduction.

If bluesy Americana is what you crave, look no further. From Richmond Indiana, Achilles Tenderloin rolls on, hop on board. Check out our provided single "Howling At The Earth" and follow him on Instagram, Facebook and Spotify!!!



Get pretty, we're going out. "Fantasy" by Venus In Arms will be arriving soon!!!  

With the final touches being placed on the music video for "Fantasy" by Venus In Arms, we patiently await its official debut. Following Venus In Arms aka Olivia Barchard on social media has told me that her new music video will have a "mini movie" feel to it. Exciting!


I've been privileged to an early listen, and I can tell you the song has a ballad feel. The bassline propels the track like an outboard engine pushes a skiff. The minimalist approach to the single allows the open guitar chords to truly resonate and the synth notes to land on open terrain. Olivia's vocals are the focus, but the lyrics are what it's all about. When Oliva sings the chorus line "you're just a fantasy", the emotional weight tips the scale over like a triple beam being maxed out in middle school science class. Reality hits the heart, I'm alone and you're just a fantasy. Riveting indeed.

Follow Venus In Arms aka Olivia Barchard on Instagram and Facebook!!! 
"Fantasy" will be debuting soon!!! Don't miss it.
In the meantime, check out Olivia Barchard kill it on “Blue Sun” with Everything But The Everything!!!





Dear Banshee sound off the war cry with their new single "Rehoboam"  

Dear Banshee describe their music as traditional, electronic and experimental. Their new single "Rehoboam" most definitely aligns with that statement. Things get serious right away as the opening vocal's sound off like war trumpets signaling the impending start of warfare. Hip hop edged drums with boisterously booming bass drum kicks amplify the war cry, 

Layers of sounds thicken the plot as the vocal verses commence, guiding us through the mayhem. The crest of the track is the chorus. An emotional overload to our senses is pushed to the brink as James sings "You're not alone, you're with us". At this moment the band unleashes its concentrated firepower to break us into the next level. Welcome to the other side.
There's something about the tone and the collective sounds of this single that remind me of "Where The Wild Things Are". As a matter of fact, each musical component I digest invokes an imaginational overexcitability. Art-deco architecture, Victorian times, NYC in the 1850's, Greek and Roman era images run through my mind like I'm flipping the pages of history. In all, a sophisticated opulence runs through the single, simultaneously exposing the scars of our personal struggles. Every day we dress up, we persevere and fight our own demons. Play this song loud as you brave through another day. You're not alone, you're with us.
Dear Banshee's latest single is here for your listening pleasure! Be sure to follow them on Instagram, Facebook, and listen to them on Spotify!!!

Ferguson's Daughter blazes on!!!  

I came across Ferguson's Daughter on Instagram a few months ago and immediately became a fan. Her three song EP, Blissed Out Blues made quite the impression on me. I wrote a small review on the spot. Since then, Lindsey has been busy releasing a 20-song full length album Being A Girl and most recently her new single "One Of Those Moments."

Upon diving through her new LP, it's clear she is a creative force. The melodies, the approach, the songwriting all vary from song to song and are stamped with her signature. Case in point is the single "Silk and Satin" with its Alice In Wonderland feel. The single is fun, vibrant and unlike anything I've heard recently. The word "clever" doesn't justify the song, "brilliant" would be the proper term.

The fun vibe that "Silk and Satin" bring to the table, beautifully set up the somber tone of "Bad Coffee". She sings with power. The way she harnesses the power of her vocal's and unleashes its force with total control at a moment's notice is magnificent. I was trying to think of who I could compare Lindsey to for the sake of conversation and Alaniss Morrissette with a touch of Amy Winehouse is my response.

Being A Girl just rolls, song after song, showcasing her talent. "Let's Play Pretend" is another standout single. Its flowing grace has a nostalgic feel, almost 50's like. The guitar line plucked in the back end of the song also comes across from that era. Grand piano keys play into our hearts as she sings the chorus line boldly and fearlessly.

Keeping us on our toes is the very next song “N.y.c.” where Americana borrows from the summer of love. Lindsey's marvelous songwriting knows no bounds. An acoustic guitar and a microphone are all she needs to create magic. The fact that she can add backing vocals to her creations thanks to studio production only enhance our experience. Excellent!

I could stay here all day dissecting every song, but sadly I have to end this a little early. I will add that "Eloise" is also amazing. There are too many great songs. You'll just have to follow her, tune in and become a fan.

Listen to Ferguson's Daughter on Spotify and follow her on Instagram!!!

We've included “Let's Play Pretend” for your instant listening pleasure. You're welcome!!!



To the top or bust: Weekend Youth  

For some, "pop music" is like a dirty word never uttered amongst certain company. I'm not afraid to say it, I love pop music. I bring this up because when I hear Weekend Youth, that's exactly what I hear, modern day pop music. They stack up musically to some of the giants of today. Foster The People, Real Estate, Ra Ra Riot, Electric Guest, Neon Indian and even Coldplay all check certain boxes that we as listeners expect to be checked when we hear their music. The songwriting and execution Weekend Youth lays down checks those same boxes.  

Let's go down the list...

Box 1 - Powerful vocals that contain a sense of vulnerability. A softness to their hue makes them feel familiar like slipping into your favorite pair of shoes.

Box 2 - Production is top notch. The levels, the mix, the tones, the volumes the entire package is first class.  

Box 3 - Modern songwriting and the creativity that it breeds elevate their music into the next level. By refusing to be boxed in by writing styles of yesterdays, a spontaneity charm exists in every bar, every measure of their music. 

Box 4 - It sounds incredible. Just like looking out the window to see if it's raining, when you play Weekend Youth's music, you'll hear what I'm talking about.

Go to their Spotify page, play the first song play and let it ride. Zoom in on a sound and then zoom out and listen to the track as a whole, any track and I think you'll agree, it's incredible delicatessen pop music. 

"Superman" and "Gotta Be Me" are two songs that I really enjoyed. Both are completely different stylistically from one another but that's the magic, their all good. 

Follow Weekend Youth immediately on Spotify, Instagram and Facebook !!! 

And of course, for your City Cat Collective sponsored introduction, we have "Vacation" for your listening pleasure. Enjoy.

Rise Up

9 o'clock Nasty at Christmas

When we started 9 o’clock Nasty one thing we agreed over those endless conversations over beer and coffee was “Whatever the Song Needs, it Gets.” We’d all been in a ton of other bands that had a “sound” and eventually became trapped producing variations on the same theme. Not being a live band helps a lot with that, you can write and record everything differently. The other maxims we wanted the band to live by were “All Killer, No Filler” and “Don’t Bore Us, Get Us To the Chorus” which probably explain themselves.

So Rise Up was an opportunity to flex on the first rule. It was written, not around a campfire, but close. It’s a song created in a kitchen with one guitar, fists banging the beat on the table and voices raised together as you gradually find the words in the smokey air. That’s why it probably sounds at first listen, very different from what we’ve made before.

Of course it grew in production. A bassline was grafted on. A mellow organ to accentuate the gentle lilt. The vocals softened from a war-march to something more bittersweet.

It is not a song about the violence of protest. It is a song about the deep sadness of having to set aside love, kindness and a warm kitchen to go deal with crap that has gone on for too long. Think of yourself not as oppressed. Think of yourself as someone that has tolerated inequality and obscene wealth and privilege of the few for too long. You’ve been kind, you’ve been patient and it just didn’t work out. So time to get your pitchfork, go get some matches at the corner shop and head for the bright lights on the other side of town.

RISE UP is released on Saturday 10th December. 

Chat Nasty: Cathi RAE

Poet, spoken word artist, body positivity model and campaigner against ageism in the world of fashion (and also co-queen of Leicester, UK)

Cathi, thank you for agreeing to be interviewed by raccoons. Let’s start big. What is wrong with fashion in 2022?

The problem is not fashion per se - it is a culture of overconsumption, of throw away clothing, of items sold so cheaply that the makers cannot be paid a human wage, of thousand of tonnes of hardly worn clothing ending up in landfill or being shipped to other countries where they become someone else's problem.

Fast fashion encourages us to feed that "want/click/get" mentality, to buy multiple versions of things we already own, to shop as a way of filling a wider emptiness inside us. 

I think the 2020 and beyond lockdown pushed many of us to move to on-line and sterile shopping experiences - it's much harder to value clothing that appears at the click of a button, that can be done 24 hrs a day and with no social interaction.

There are movements to challenge this - shopping pre-loved, buying from charity shops, wearing what you already own, clothes swaps, we can chose to ignore the siren call of the new new and replace it with the pleasure of the new to us item instead.

Q You have been known to do a poetry slam or two. How do you prepare for taking words that you’ve lovingly crafted in private and bringing them to a live performance?

There are poems i write which are very definitely designed to be read on the page - a more considered experience which allows the reader time to read slowly - some poetry really benefits from this but a lot of my work is designed to be performed. which means work that is instantly gettable and resonates with an audience. One of my editing tools is actually to perform work at an early stage, to gauge its sounds and structure and to read audience reaction. I've been doing this for a long time now and have become more comfortable at accepting that some work will be more appreciated by audiences and some not so much - it's really about doing the best you can by a poem, trusting your editing and believing in your work and accepting that sometimes a piece you are happy with may not work in front of some audiences, some events. My work is not particularly personal or confessional so it doesn't feel as if i'm ripping my skin open to an audience - i can take work not being liked - although obviously it's a wonderful feeling if a poem resonates with other people or means something to them as well.

Q A lot of the people reading this will be in bands or otherwise making something on the indie scene. How can we all make better Art in 2023?

We are in hard times - i've had gigs canceled recently due to low ticket sales and i don't see this getting better any time  soon - but, in hardship art in all its forms becomes even more important. We need to keep the faith, to keep making art, to keep creating spaces where there is light. My personal commitment is to do more benefit gigs - for striking workers, for the #enoughisenough campaign, for the #dontpay campaign

Q Where do you see signs to be optimistic about the future? Can 2023 avoid being even worse than 2022?

Oddly enough I think the current cost of living crisis has opened up conversations about poverty and austerity which are challenging the idea that poverty is simply personal failure. I'm hoping that more and more people are seeing the destructive power of global capitalism and governments that put profit before people. maybe next year will see even more grassroots revolution, more people saying enough is enough, more actions that are about community and not the individual. Sounds revolutionary - count me in.

Q Where can readers find out more about your work and support you?

I have a book - it's had excellent reviews - "Your cleaner hates you and other poems" - please DON'T buy if from amazon - contact me directly

I have a youtube channel @cathirae

I’m on instagram @cathirae   

I do gig around the UK and publicise this on all the usual social medias

I teach regularly @attenborougharts in Leicester

AND....I'm happy to discuss poetry workshops, performances and 1-2-1 mentoring with new writers 

The Qwarks release 'Nothing For Something'

Behind the scenes of the new single

The Qwarks ‘Nothing for Something’ was released on the 31st October and yes, they did attempt to utilise the theme of Halloween. The single cover was designed by Smithereen Art (great artist, do have a perusal of @smithereenart84) and is entitled ‘the vulgarity of opulence’.  The image jumped out and disrupted the doom scrolling of a Qwark and said Qwark immediately recognised the power of the image and its suitability for the single cover of a song which seems to be about the penetration of the logics of the advertising industry into every nook and cranny of our existence. A video was produced by Pao Pincerna of Brighton Perfume, which is a vegan perfumery by the seaside (well worth checking out!). The video sees all kinds of zombies and creepy stuff going on and can be viewed on Youtube here.

It became apparent that the singer and guitarist of the Qwarks has strong opinions about Halloween and how an imported culture of ‘trick or treating’ was disrupting the work ethic instilled in traditional routines of ‘Guising’ in places like Scotland where he recalls having to work very hard for sweets by doing performances on doorways. He laments that sweets are now just handed out without hard labour but maybe he should just cheer up for once. A bit about the song itself: have a listen to what happens to the second and third chorus. The song modulates up a tone. Indeed, the formula of the chord progression means that you are arrive a tone above what you are playing each time the chorus ends. Yet in the first chorus it does not do this. One of the reasons why this is that it was found that if the first chorus had done this it would have meant ending up in a key that was too high to sing in for the third verse. With the formula of the chorus chord progression you could have a version of the song with many more verses that kept going until it returned to the original key but this doesn't sound an appealing prospect.

This single is part of the Qwarks second album, ‘let’s Go, Let’s Grow’ that is out on the 16th December.  The final single release from the new album is "Nice While It Lasted' which is out on the 9th December.