Needle | Songs Your Mother Never Sang You

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Rock: Acoustic Rock: Americana Moods: Solo Female Artist
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Songs Your Mother Never Sang You

by Needle

Ethereal low-fi lullabies and symphonic sagas of battles won, souls sucked in, and hands held up in surrender.
Genre: Rock: Acoustic
Release Date: 

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1. It's No Secret
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2:53 $0.99
2. On The Run
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4:13 $0.99
3. Good Intentions
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4:20 $0.99
4. Start
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2:55 $0.99
5. Make Love
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4:53 $0.99
6. Black Holes
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3:14 $0.99
7. The Best Is Yet To Come
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2:35 $0.99
8. Helpless
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4:40 $0.99
9. Lost
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4:02 $0.99
10. If
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2:10 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Needle’s debut CD, Songs Your Mother Never Sang You, blends low-fi minimalist arrangements with a collection of lullabies and symphonic sagas. Described as “a gentle, mellifluous exploration of the aural netherworld” by Pop Culture Press, Needle strives for honesty in its music, keeping where possible early takes marked by inspiration. Acoustic guitars and distortion, analog synthesizers, old time pianos along with toy xylophones and a cocktail drum helped shape these songs of battles won, souls sucked in, and hands held up in surrender. Included on the CD is a dreamlike remake of Neil Young’s “Helpless”.

“The best downtempo CD ever so you'll never need to buy another one” – Performer Magazine

“A breathtaking indie-pop lullaby” – San Francisco Chronicle

“A soothing concoction of poetics, soft guitars and percussion done in a sit-in folky lo-fi style that fans of Mazzy Star, Chocolate Grinder, etc. would certainly dig” – Legends Magazine

“Lo-fi apartment rock that deftly blends sugary indie-pop with minimalist art rock. Masterful!” – Smother.net

“Atmospheric psychedelia and minimal in layered structure...it takes imagination and real talent to make music like this” – Underground Sound

“an absolutely brilliant display of warm sound” – Independents Only

“untainted, comforting bliss” – The Big Takeover


Reviews


to write a review

Collected Sounds

quietly pretty
Wow, I don't know if this record could be any mellower. It's so quiet it's almost not there. Think layers of echoes and whispers and minimal instrumentation. But it's very pretty.

Julie Cornett's vocals are perfectly understated. It would be easy to outshine the music here and she does not.
[see website for full review]

Smother.net

Lo-fi apartment rock that deftly blends sugary indie pop with minimalist art roc
Julie Cornett and Steve Beck combine forces as a duo named Needle. Finding themselves in the proverbial haystack of indie pop, Needle boasts sweet lullabies from vocalist Julie. The instruments played on Songs Your Mother Never Sang You are exotic yet low-key, with toy xylophones, analog synthesizers, guitar, and very light percussion providing Julie a sweet backdrop of melody to harmonize with. Lo-fi apartment rock that deftly blends sugary indie pop with minimalist art rock. Masterful!

- J-Sin

Gonzo

"Necessary"
Honesty, Integrity and Respect pour out of every track.
An intricate source of inspiration, motivation and gratification within reach.

Independents Only

The music can be psychedelic, often acoustic, always ethereal.
A mix of the shoegaze sound of Mazzy Star and the introspective folk of the Cowboy Junkies are instantly noticed on "Songs Your Mother Never Sang You". It's an absolutely brilliant display of warm sound. Of two people, Sunday morning, drinking coffee, recording songs, and imagining what noise aural nirvana might make. The music can be psychedelic, often acoustic, always ethereal. Vocalist Julie Cornett has a talent for harmonizing with herself and calling up ghostly songs from deep within. Make comparisons if you wish but truth be told, Needle has a sound all their own and stand firm on amazing songwriting and talent.

Music Morsels

Tori Amos meets the Velvet Underground in an extraordinarily mellow mood
If you think of say Tori Amos meeting the Velvet Underground and both getting in an extraordinarily mellow mood, you will get the idea of what this California band creates. In spite of the very subdued vibe of the songs, they are quite intriguing from the perspective of Julie Cornett's lush vocals and thought provoking lyrics. Don't expect to rock out to this music, instead relax, put on the headphones and absorb the celestial ambiance their music provides.

Performer Magazine

The best downtempo CD ever so you'll never need to buy another one
Needle's debut album, Songs Your Mother Never Sang You, probably had a number of other titles before they chose the aforementioned one. Songs to Welcome Autumn With, Songs to Rock You to Sleep Underwater and This CD is the Best Downtempo CD Ever So You'll Never Need to Buy Another One were probably all in the running. Singer Julie Cornett's melodies are truly more reminiscent of lullabies than generic songs. The blend of synthesizers, pianos, xylophones and occasional violins sets the mood as Cornett's soothing voice quietly rocks the listener to a calmer, quieter dimension.

Though the band can be compared to similar groups such as Brightblack Morning Light, Elephant Parade, Mazzy Star and Portishead, Needle clearly steps away from sounding like a clone and rather makes a name for itself as a sleep-rock genius. Though guitarist/bassist/xylophonist/keyboardist Steve Beck creates brilliantly arranged melodies, one of the most beautiful songs on the album is a cover of Neil Young's "Helpless," which the group does more than justice to. Even the lyrics in "Helpless" describe the band's motive, "Throwing shadows over our eyes," which perfectly mimics what the sleepy lyrics do to their audience. Occasional bandmember Christine Banks does a tremendous job of adding violin to a few select songs, but is aware enough not to overdo it.

The cover of the album features several leaves dangling on a branch turning brownish-gold and yellow, a great use of symbolism as the songs are all reminiscent of the coming of autumn and cold nights spent by the fireplace. The only song that sounds out of place is the last song, "If," which has a simple piano medley and a much more poppy sound to it. Though it really stands out against the lazy haze that the rest of the album creates, "If" may be foreshadowing what is to come.

EconoCulture

music to play while you empty a bottle or two of red wine with a few friends
Marked by Julie Cornett’s haunting vocals wrapped in Steve Beck’s minimalist musical arrangements, Songs Your Mother Never Sang You has a feel not unlike early Elliott Smith. With a little close, careful listening, it’s easy to fall in love with Cornett’s lyrics, but a more casual listener can bask in the mellow instrumentation.


Vocals aside, the album is chiefly comprised of acoustic guitar, bass, and almost non-existent drumming, though occasionally electric guitar, keyboards, xylophone and violin (played by Christine Banks) find their way into the mix, giving the album some much-needed aural variety. The inclusion of unique instrumental voices is a saving quality on this album, as it could have easily been a purely acoustic album banished to the shelf of ambient music to play when nobody’s really listening.


The album really comes together at the end. The Neil Young cover “Helpless” brings the album up from the soft indie-pop doldrums, lifting the listener from the murky, minor tone of “Black Holes” and “The Best Is Yet To Come” into more airy, open arrangements and ethereal vocal performances. “Lost” and “If” continue in the same vein; “If” finds Needle venturing into something upbeat and poppy.


“If you want it, you will find it,” Cornett sings in the final line of the album. And Needle lives up to the lyric: if you want soft, non-intrusive music to play while you empty a bottle or two of red wine with a few friends, you will find it in Songs Your Mother Never Sang You.


Reviewed by Ian Graham

Underground A&R Report

Atmospheric psychedelia and minimal in layered structure.
Julie Cornett and Steve Beck collaborate to form Needle, making music with atmospheric psychedelia rising and minimal in layered structure. The formula works well, quite a few of these songs will have you daydreaming. Standouts here include "Make Love", the music perfect for just that exercise. It would be my choice as the single. There's enough emotive overtones throughout that songs like "Black Holes" could gain a spot as the ending number in an episode of Grey's Anatomy (I am not kidding). They also do a totally tripped out remake of Neil Young's "Helpless". I am sure 'ol Neil fires up a fat daddy and digs this version as well. It takes imagination and real talent to make music like this. Turn down the lights, light some candles, and ride the sound.

Legends Magazine

A sit-in folky lo-fi style for fans of Mazzy Star, Chocolate Grinder , etc.
Needle's a nice slow moving shoegazery collection, poetic in its make-up and very soft and chillful. It comes across as a downbeat coffee house sound, dubbed "Lo-fi apartment rock" combined with "minimalist art rock." It doesn't stray too far into the artsy-fartsy vagueness and pretention I've seen at times, and instead remains more palatable and comfortable.

The two prime members of Needle are multi-instrumentalists, combined with soft female vocals by Julie Cornett. She also handles keys, drums, xylophone and guitar while Steven Beck's guitar, bass, drums, keyboard and xylophone are utilized as well.

The opening It's No Secret is soft and strummy, almost fuzzy, with angelic lyrics by Julie and slow movements. The trend continues, getting a bit deeper and brooding with On the Run though Julie's voice attempts to keep it from spiraling into a depressive pit of angst and melancholy.

The loping mope of Good Intentions threatens to darken your mood, but somehow Julie's vocals again trace a bit of light heartedness into even the mopiest of rhythms. Start gets extremely poetic in its recitation and brightens the mood a bit. I really like the childlike overtones of Black Holes, somewhat reminiscent of Bel Canto's Magic Box , though certainly softer in tone. The Best is Yet to Come has a feeling of being lost adrift somewhere.

I don't mind Songs Your Mother Never Sang You so much, but I really have to be in the mood for the lo-fi chill out thing. It's not my everyday fare, but a nice chill down atmosphere can be created with Needle. As I finish up this review I am in a bit of an upbeat sort of mood, so getting into Songs Your Mother Never Sang You is a bit tough, but the music is a soothing concoction of poetics, soft guitars and percussion done in a sit-in folky lo-fi style that fans of Mazzy Star, Chocolate Grinder , etc. would certainly dig.

- Marcus Pan Editor, Legends Magazine