Life + Arts

Bands release EPs for free

Asher Roth

If you don’t know who Asher Roth is, it is only a matter of time before he becomes a household name in the hip-hop community. Roth began listening to hip-hop after hearing a Jay-Z song and would eventually get the opportunity to meet Jay-Z and doing a 150-bar freestyle for the Def Jam Records’ head honcho on the spot. Roth is wrapping up the details on his upcoming debut album on Universal Motown, but in the meantime you can download his mix tape, The Greenhouse Effect, at

There are obvious comparisons to Eminem, but Roth has a style and subject matter that is all his own. Need proof, look no further than his single ‘I Love College,’ an anthem for those inclined to the party mentality.

The happy-go-lucky party approach makes Roth easily accessible to mainstream audiences and embraces his strengths, rather than pretending to be something he isn’t ‘hard.’ Even though Roth may be considered a late bloomer just getting into hip-hop in 1998, there is no denying his skill.

Traveus Lawson and the Lost Prophets

The ambient, soothing sounds of Traveus Lawson and the Lost Prophets can be a relaxing alternative for those who like their music loud and abrasive. Lawson’s music can be likened to artists like Ben Harper and Jack Johnson.

His approach is unique by storytelling throughout the music with the songs at times sounding like spoken prose. The songs are structured like a story in parts, deviating away from the general formula of verse-chorus at times.

Lawson is a busy man, as he is also a student at university. In his free time he has completed his upcoming album, which is slated for an April 20 release date via Citnala Records.

– Mike Damante

Ely Falls

By simply looking through this band’s influences on their MySpace page, you can get a pretty good idea of what they sound like. You can’t go wrong with a list with Sigur Ros, The Appleseed Cast and Radiohead. This young band recently released their EP, Let Your Yes Be Yes, for free on their page,

The band’s main strength is by far their musical abilities. The guitarists will lure you in with their technical progressions and the melodic and soothing croons will make this a surefire nighttime gem. The long-winded instrumentals seem to carry the songs, much like Austin’s post-rock darlings Explosions in the Sky.

If releasing the EP for free wasn’t enough to lure you in, Ely Falls also recorded ‘Let Your Yes Be Yes’ acoustically, and is also releasing it for free on the bands Web site. Upon listening to these songs, you’ll come to find out that Ely Falls is the best export out of Iowa since ‘hellip; well, OK, they’re the best. Listen at

A Great Big Pile of Leaves

Aside from the incredibly stupid band name, these Brooklyn natives have their game on lock. Much like Ely Falls, they are yet another band that released both their EPs, The Fiery Works and The Fiery Works II, for free on their Web site,

Their sound is full of guitar noodling, highly reminiscent of bands like Minus the Bear and As Tall as Lions. Considering the band is comprised of only two members, they’ve done a great job creating a full and rich sound. They also have a strong ’80s influence from bands like Echo and the Bunnymen or the Smiths.

At any rate, A Great Big Pile of Leaves has an upbeat and energetic sound that will undoubtedly make you move your feet. Don’t waste anymore time. Head to their Web site and get a hold of both EPs in The Fiery Works collection.

– Roshan Bhatt

Leave a Comment