Brothertiger is the name of John Jagos solo recorded soft-pop-synth style music. He’s from Toledo, OH but currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. His music has a strong influence of disco and funk and 80’s style synth-pop. Within the past 6 months he began performing live with a full band. Adding drums, guitar and bass to his already thick blend of layers and layers of synth instruments and keyboards.

Reason’s Your Ears Deserve This:

-His music is only getting better.

-Mixes funk, pop-synth and disco in an awesome way.

-The best live show I’ve seen in a while.

The first time I saw him was in Toronto, Canada at North By North East in 2011. He played by himself with a synthesizer, keyboard and a laptop (If I remember right). He opened for the band A Lull at a small venue/restaurant/bar for a relatively small crowd of people. Recently I saw him play another bar/restaurant/venue called Cameo Gallery in Brooklyn. I told him how I saw him in Toronto and he was blown away because there was hardly anyone at that show. He was very humble and grateful for my support.

The band “Safe” opened with a short set of simple beats and solid vocals. Followed by Psychic Twin, a phenomenally entertaining, super catchy blend of synth-pop and rock with dual female vocals. (Going to have to do a separate review of them because they were great.)

When Brothertiger came on I had no idea he had started playing with a full band and it was an AWESOME surprise. The bassist was unreal and so into the music, as were the drummer and guitarist. John Jagos put on an amazing show as the front man with his synth leads and spot-on vocals to hold it all together.

I initially was going to do an album review but couldn’t decide which because they’re all so good. So I’m going to talk about the most recent song that I’ve heard of his. Chains.

The song starts off with a pretty simple three-note progression that moves from ear to ear, slowly another layer of synth-organ comes in to change the intro progression to a more complex version of itself. Then he hits you with a drum fill that seems like it comes out of nowhere to bring the song from triplets into straight 4/4 time. The fill brings you to one of the grooviest beats Brothertiger has ever made followed by a higher pitch series of notes while the organ part from the beginning plays underneath.  The synth lead then drops out and the vocals come in. The vocals are fantastic in this song because they go perfectly with the very low-key and chill progression of the song. The melody isn’t overly complicated which allows you to focus on the music more while still remaining catchy. Once he says, “And it’s true” the synth lead comes back in with reverb-heavy backing vocals to make the pre-chorus even thicker and deeper. The chorus of this song is one that is sure to get stuck in your head. The lyrics, melody and added subtle guitar riff in the background make this chorus really great. Once the chorus is over, another really soulful guitar riff comes in to exaggerate a lot of the notes from the backing guitar during the chorus. The song then goes back to the first verse with a very similar progression to the beginning of the song. Once they get back to the chorus again it starts off the same as the first one, then they hit you with it again with more backing vocals that create a sweeping layer that make it seem like a whole new part. They then layer the backing vocals with that soulful riff which brings you back to the intro of the song and its over.

I highly recommend every one of Brothertiger’s albums. Especially the album “Golden Years” which I have been obsessed with since I downloaded it a few months ago.

You can listen to all of his albums on Spotify for free.

OR you can be a good person and download most of them and listen to them on his Bandcamp:

They’re also currently on TOUR:

Everyone Everywhere

Everyone Everywhere is an 4 piece rock/emo/mathie band from Philadelphia, PA. They’re composed of Brendan Graham, Brendan McHugh, Matt Scottoline and Tommy Manson. I had the privilege of playing with them in PA with my band Palmkite. I shouted out that they play “Cool Pool Keg Toss Pete” from their old 7” (my favorite song of their first 2 releases) and they DID!

Reasons your ears deserve this:

-Complex parts that somehow are still really catchy.

-Vocal melodies and lyrics that hook you right in.

-UNBELIEVABLY intricate drumming.

I found out about these guys through the website , they had their 7”  “A lot of Weird People Standing Around” posted and reviewed. After reading the review and hearing the song posted I immediately bought it and fell in love with it. They then came out with Everyone Everywhere(2010) a full length that I was stoked about. It picked up right where the 7” left off and added a lot of complicated and interesting textures.

The main focus of this post is their latest release, Everyone Everywhere(2012). This album blew me away. From beginning to end this album is exactly what I had hoped for. They stay true to their up-beat driving parts that made me love the 7” as well as take a lot of the aspects from Everyone Everywhere(2010). Throughout the album they use some really interesting and different styles of transitions.“Fervor & Indifference in the Bicameral Brian” has some of the coolest and most creative transitions I’ve ever heard, they let parts completely fall into nothing then somehow bring them back into a song. Songs like “Queen Mary II” as well as “Big Hat” maintain a similar vibe to that of “A lot of Weird People Standing Around” in the best way. While keeping a driving, up-beat pace, they added some cool time signature changes that somehow keep the songs super catchy.

One song in particular that sold me on this album is “The Future.” This song opens up with a bass and drum part that instantly grabs you. While one guitar fades in slowly with a twinkly riff the other guitar takes over and adds a subtly driving riff that immediately gets your head bobbing. The vocals, spacey and distant fit in perfectly with the lyrics as well as the feel of the song. The vocal melody that happens only once in the song “Tuned up, held up, knocked out easy” is my favorite vocal part of the entire album. The way it is sung fits flawlessly with the music behind it. They then bring you back into the intro, followed by a Yo La Tengo-like solo that slowly fades in from the background. The song then reaches its climax with the tambourine, shakers as well as the open high-hat that really gets you rocking. Before you know it the song cuts back to the way it started and its all over. I must have listened to this song 25 times the day I got the record so I could sing along as soon as possible.

Overall this album is one that your ears will thank you for. All of their music is on Spotify, or you can stream it (OR BUY IT *recommended*) from these sites.

(Just discovered a split of theirs with Into It. Over it. on Spotify while I was writing this. Also awesome!)