Joe, Marc's Brother | Around The Year With

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Pop: Quirky Rock: Emo Moods: Type: Vocal
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Around The Year With

by Joe, Marc's Brother

Eclectic, orchestral, avant pop with lush vocal harmonies and blistering musicianship.
Genre: Pop: Quirky
Release Date: 

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1. Ready To Change
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2:21 $0.99
2. Stand By Your Lie
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3:44 $0.99
3. Spinning On An Axis
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3:19 $0.99
4. Underwater
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3:38 $0.99
5. Failing In Love
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4:05 $0.99
6. Hide Away
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3:26 $0.99
7. Eraser
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2:31 $0.99
8. Tonight
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3:42 $0.99
9. Where Were You
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2:27 $0.99
10. Sleep My Friend
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2:59 $0.99
11. Closed For The Season
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3:29 $0.99
12. Evergreen
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2:37 $0.99
13. A Hate Story
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5:25 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
On the follow-up to their debut album, Joe, Marc's Brother ventures into the lands of the pioneers.

While drawing upon motifs and conventions of twentieth century music, Joe, Marc's Brother has forged a sound that is both comfortably recognizable and excitingly refreshing at the same time.

Produced by Nashville underground dream-team, Brad Jones & Robin Eaton (Cotton Mather, Jill Sobule, Jump Little Children), Around the Year with Joe, Marc's Brother is a transporting listening experience from start to finish.

Complete with memorable melodies, inspired lyrics, pristine harmonies, dizzying arrangements, lush sound-scapes, and blistering musical performances, Around the Year with...may be the panacea for those searching for a unique, meaningful music experience in our current corporate music climate.

The album's opening track, the bossa-anthem "Ready To Change," sets up the central theme for the record while revealing the inherent mantra of the band.

Over a bed of lounge-style jazz fused with Brit-pop quirkiness, singer Joe Pisapia declares that he is ready to forsake that which he knows and dive into the unknown.

This theme is apparent throughout the record as the band consistently eschews the predictable and the obvious for the new and inspired.

That the listener is willfully taken on a journey and never abandoned to over-indulgent exploration and fill-in-the-gaps gimmickry reveals the true craftsmanship of this band.

Around the Year With...explores the many moods, contemplations, and experiences of a year in the life of one of the most vital forces in today's musical underground.

Track 2 "Stand by Your Lie," soulfully addresses dishonesty while soothing the receiver with beautiful, atmospheric, dynamic subtleties reminiscent of Fleetwood-Mac at their subdued best.

From there, we are propelled into "Spinning On An Axis," a rocking, jovial number that reveals Joe's uncanny sense of wit and insight.

"I live, and I love, and I wonder about stuff," he sings as he spins on his imaginary axis contemplating the nature of the cosmos and his relationship therewith.

"Underwater" finds the band in a pseudo-gospel mood reassuring the listener in perfect harmony that though you may drown in fear, there is always something near to "pull you up to the top of the water." While the album exposes the full spectrum of human emotion both lyrically and musically, always is the listener encouraged to see the beauty in the good and bad.

As with the seasons of the year, change is a constant with Joe, Marc's Brother.

Around the Year with...sees the band wearing many different hats and exploring many different genres of music.

Whether the band dips into 80's pop like "Failing in Love," the recklessness of garage rock like "Where Were You," or acoustic folk like "Hide Away," they do so seamlessly.

At no point is the identity of the band ever forgotten or confused.

The band's ability to mold its own style while culling from a wide variety of sources is revealing of the inherent talent of its three members to travel the 360 degree dynamic music range.

The centerpiece of the band is Joe Pisapia, lead vocalist and guitarist.

It is Joe's musical and lyrical vision that the band draws from.

His enigmatic persona is evident in his soulfully expressive voice, his legendary guitar skills, and his deep understanding of music.

Joe's talents are strengthened by the assistance of one of music's most solid rhythm sections.

On the drums and background vocals is Joe's brother Marc Pisapia.

Marc is a rare musical drummer with the ability to convey the necessary emotion for the song, ranging from brushed whispers to bombastic thrashing in a moment's notice.

The brothers take full advantage of their genetic commodity by allowing their inherent telepathic communication to take them to very subtle realms of syncopation and harmony.

Without the benefit of those same genes, bassist and background vocalist James "Hags" Haggerty could easily pass for a lost brother.

James seals the packaging with his understanding of subtlety, dynamics, and his steadfast grasp on the groove.

But perhaps even more compelling is how perfectly his voice complements the brothers, creating a magical vocal blend that is the band's greatest asset.

Joe, Marc's Brother has been touring the U.S.

for the past several years and continues to win legions of fans with their phenomenal live show wherever they go.

Over the years, the band has received several awards and attracted much critical acclaim.

The new album, Around the Year With Joe, Marc's Brother, has already garnered rave reviews and is creating quite a buzz.

Look for the band on tour, and see for yourself why Joe, Marc's Brother is stirring things up.


Reviews


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David Mead

Around the year with… is one of the few pieces of music that truly trumpets the
Is it just me? Here we are, six months into the year 2000, and not a mention of any of the millennium hoopla that plagued us such a short time ago. Has the excitement dimmed? Is everyone just that much more enlightened, content to bask in their newfound Nostrodamian smirks and lack of survival techniques? I proffer the theory that this is simply not the case- that old, familiar ache in my cerebral cortex tells me that we simply don't know what's hit us yet. Is it just me?
The quandary vaguely outlined above is the overwhelming sensation that the stunning new disc from Joe, Marc's Brother has left me with. Around the year with… is one of the few pieces of music currently not yet classified by the CIA that truly trumpets the arrival of a new era. An amazingly fresh advancement of at least 80% of the major musical influences of the last century, Around the year with… triumphs in all of its aspirations and offers no apologies for having them. It is the rare artistic statement that gives a warm embrace to its origins and a sly wink to its competition. Alarmingly self-assured, it is one of the quintessential soundtracks for this exciting new time we find ourselves in. There is simply nothing else like it.
This statement begs the obvious question, "What is it, exactly?" The answer, pleasantly enough, is "Nothing and everything." The opus blasts off with "Ready to Change," a fitting anthem for a band that has seen its share of metamorphosis and turmoil over the past four years. It is an arresting beginning; a twinge of biting lounge pop that becomes something much more pleasantly jarring as three-part harmonies, lap steel and a female vocal ooze through the trio's standard guitar-bass-drums delivery. Next up is "Stand By Your Lie," a sobering, McCartney-cum-Velvet Underground evaluation of its protagonist's conviction that is, quite possibly, the most impressively written song on the album. The vocal juxtaposition between these first two tracks lays a strong foundation for the range of Joe Pisapia's voice throughout the disc; it is an instrument that can expand from an asinine peal to a wide, mellow tone that covers a track with its breadth. The musical schism between the songs also displays the impressive fluidity of drummer Marc Pisapia and bassist James 'Hags' Haggerty, a unit that can only be described as being one.
"Hide Away" is a gem; a sweet, classic ballad that starts small and ends with a more universal question that requires further examination. "Eraser" is one of the album's most obscure lyrical exercises laid over its most obvious 'hit' musical combination- guitars that sound like Steve Marriot and Brian Wilson jamming together with a rhythmic foundation that threatens to distort your speakers at any moment.
On "Tonight," Joe Pisapia proves once and for all that he is an instrumentalist to be reckoned with. The level of guitar mastery alone throughout the entire album is breathtaking- Mr. Pisapia is possibly the only player of his generation to truly quote and incorporate all of his heroes in a unique, post-modern fashion that truly becomes a hero itself. Traces of Django Rhineheart, Ray Davies, Les Paul and even Steve Gadd can be heard everywhere, but this track allows all of his talents to emerge in a masterfully arranged blend of guitar, lap steel, strings and keyboards. The result is a soft sigh of mutually unrequited love that stands above and apart from any of Daniel Lanois or Johnny Marr's soundscapes.
It is difficult to focus on one aspect of Around the Year with… that might leave the reader with a definitive idea of what JMB's sound or statement of intent is. Indeed, one of the many joys of repeated listenings to the album is discovering new complexities of its inherent simplicity. It possesses a multi-faceted personality that is at once immediate and deceiving; a quick smile that belies a deeper sense of heartbreak underneath. But the resounding overtones of hope found in the beautifully constructed pieces here will keep the listener coming back again and again, trying to find the small glimmer of light that runs throughout the collection, hoping to make it their own. This is an album that you want to be a part of, to experience, to understand again what it truly means to be one who, "when the light was needed most… stood motionless and closed for the season."

By David Mead

The Tennessean

Whatever It Is, It's Good
The three tenets of music criticism: Determine what a band or artist is trying to do, determine
whether it's worth doing, and determine whether the band or artist succeeds in doing it.

In reviewing, for instance, a Michael Bolton album, most critics figure the emphatic, ultra-sensitive
singer accomplishes his objective, but we also generally surmise that his objective involves making
really horrible music.

But the scratching sound you hear is created by fingernails brushing the noggins of music reviewers
trying to figure out what in the world Joe, Marc's Brother thinks it is doing. This has too much snarl to
be pop, and too many strangely beautiful three-part harmonies and plaintive arrangements to be
rock.

A studied but still befuddled guess lands it as something close to what Sly Stone might have come
up with if he'd stayed up all night drinking coffee with Beach Boy Brian Wilson and listening to
Replacements records. Whatever it is, though, turn it up.

Produced by Brad Jones and Robin Eaton at Alex The Great, the south Nashville studio that has
become Music City's pop rock central, Around the Year With Joe, Marc's Brother is a whirling,
banging, maddeningly addictive collection of songs which follow the pensive annum of a narrator
whose existence is best summed up in the lyrics to Spinning On An Axis: "I live and I love and I
wonder about stuff."

On paper, that line could seem tossed off; it isn't. Nothing about this intricately arranged, beautifully
sung album is there by chance. At times the lyrical path gets a little too esoteric, as when lead singer
and songwriter Joe Pisapia announces, "I'm not gonna say any words/ Eraser never heard." For the
most part, however, Pisapia's words astutely convey the simple needs that underpin complex
actions.

Drummer Marc Pisapia (that's Marc, Joe's brother) bangs the skins like a sober but equally
dexterous Keith Moon, and bass man James "Hags" Haggerty provides solid work with occasional
forays into Paul McCartney's melodic territory.

While music row remains in a commercial and creative slide, Around the Year With Joe, Marc's
Brother is yet another reminder that some of Nashville's most inventive and enjoyable music exists
far outside the country spectrum.

ollertonmusic.com

Stunning
First off, yes, this is sure to be a very biased review. If there is ANYTHING wrong with the album, in any small way, I will deny it, even if it's true. I cannot say one harsh word against this masterpiece.

I got into them through Guster (one of the best bands EVA!) And this album has literally changed my life I think. I am a musician myself, and my very first song I wrote was largely influenced by them. That song made me write more songs, and I eventually released an album, got in a newspaper, iTunes, got a website, devoted fans across the country, a very loyal fanbase, a short feature on PBS, and many shows around Norther CA. And I honestly think this album helped me get there. "Underwater" was the first song I heard off the album, on their website. I would try and name my favorite song off the album, but all the songs are amazing, not to sound cliche or anything. Even the hidden track is great (oops, not too hidden anymore!) 'A Hate Story' has true meaning to me, it's lyrics have been posted on my bedroom wall for years.

A true hidden treasure. I feel so lucky to have stumbled upon them. Even though Joe is now a permanent member of Guster and I am thrilled with that, I can't help but feel a little sad, because that only dampends the chances of ever hearing a new JMB release. I am currently bidding on an old JMB shirt that is Ryan Millers for 50 bucks. I am willing to go over 100 for the shirt. That's how freaking-amazing JMB is.