More word on the new OCEAN album: It’s looking like late summer or early fall, now, and will be titled Pantheon of the Lesser, to be released by IMPORTANT RECORDS. To tide you over, Ocean will be releasing a split-12” with CONIFER. The limited pressing will feature the Ocean track “Durance Vile” as well as artwork culled from local Portland monuments. Look for it in June.
HAAKON KALLWEIT is reviving the MAINE SONGWRITER SHOWDOWN, a competition credited to Nick Bloom and started back when there was a Maine Festival (remember that? The “Sibilance” staff actually never attended, so we don’t). There’s some talk that it spawned the likes of JASON SPOONER, ABI TAPIA, and EMILIA DAHLIN, but we’re fairly certain they were conceived and birthed in the standard way roughly 30 years ago. Anyway, the Showdown will be hosted by HAWK, judged by local scenesters, and be held at Bleachers, which is now down in Bayside. As many as eight songwriters will go head to head on the last Sunday of each month from 5 to 9 pm, starting last Sunday and running through September. There’s a $10 registration fee, but the overall winner will get roughly $500 and a mini home recording set-up from BUCKDANCER’S CHOICE, so it might be worth it. Also, no bands. You either accompany yourself or sing to someone else accompaniment. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
DOMINIQUE LISE held a release show for her debut, 20 Years, April 21 at the Big Easy, backed by the GROOVE DISCIPLES, Portland’s newest wicked great cover band. The Disciples (not to be confused with the DISCIPLES OF GROOVE, a band that hail from Vineland, New Jersey (“featured artist at the Hi-Tide Jam Fest, dude”)) feature the BOTTLE ROCKET KINGS’ PAUL NEWTON on lead vocals and guitar, the OVERTONES’ JAY WARD on Hammond, sax, and vocals, the PINERS’ TIM MYERS on drums, and Greg GOODWIN on bass and vocals (we can’t figure out what bands he used to play in, but we’re certain there are some).
Looks like GRAHAM ISAACSON’s Memories in Shadows will drop in June, on SINISTER MUSE, though there isn’t an exact date set and technically you can buy it at CDBaby right now. Isaacson’s Web site says he’s become buddies with RAY LAMONTAGNE and that the two have written a few songs together that Isaacson has slated for his third disc. However, his Web site also calls Shadows his “debut,” completely ignoring the well received Nine Days, so maybe you’ve got to take information there with a grain of salt. Not that we’d do that.
HEADSTART drop a limited edition mini EP titled Love you to Death (also known as LU2D, hah) on May 8, complete with sticker and button. They play a free show on the UMaine/Farmington campus May 4 with LOST ON LIFTOFF, CAMBIATA, and the KILLING MOON (um, wow, that’s a big show — nice job UMaine/Farmington events coordinators/bookers). Also, check out the music video for “Sincerely Yours” at www.myspace.com/headstart. We’re not sure which is scarier, watching KEVIN KENNIE scream in the face of the attractive young lady in the first row of English class, or that the entire band have very little trouble passing for high school kids (ps, sweet Megadeth T, Kevin!).