Mel Hsu ’13 and Josh Smith ’11 filled earth house last night with the warmth raw warm and creatively unique melodies. Even decked out in Halloween attire, the crowd was hushed and pulled into the poetry of their music. Mixing spoken word, the deep pizzicato of Mel’s cello, and the musical talent of their friends Jessica Best ’14, Tory Mathieson ’14, Yatta Zoker ’14, Gabe Gordon ’11, Louis Russo ’11 and Nate Mondschein ’12, one could not help but feel that they were also a part of the friendship music making. (Mel and Josh dropped an album last May. Check it out here.)
They were followed by DRMS, a band from the Bay area, self-described as “if David Lynch curated a band with Billie Holiday.” The Earth House living room was still jam-packed, and the mermaids, pirates, and 80s disco divas danced on to the rolling aerial and smoky vocals of their music. Bandcamp here.
Pictures here after the jump.
People, get ready! Not only is there a Mel & Josh living room show planned for this weekend, but it’s gonna get electric! If your life hasn’t yet been touched with this duo’s incredible tunes, make sure to check out their bandcamp and don’t miss this show! Mel Hsu ’13 has a little something to say:
Word on the street is that Josh Smith ’11 and some of The Rooks are coming back to Wes on Saturday to play a Mel & Josh living room show with a special guest set from Bay Area band DRMS! We are incredibly excited to play songs off of our recently-released album: “Analogue.” This will be our first intimately electric show at Wes with a full band. We’ll be rocking songs from Analogue, some older favorites, and some new songs as well.
We will be joined by our good friends Jessica Best ’14, Tory Mathieson ’14, Yatta Zoker ’14, Gabe Gordon ’11, Louis Russo ’11 and Nate Mondschein ’12.
A little over a month ago, we covered efforts by Mel Hsu ’13 and Josh Smith ’11 to gain financial support for their first album together via Kickstarter. And support there was! They overshot their goal by over $900!
Mel and Josh released the album a couple days ago. Titled Analogue, it is incredibly moving, combining beautiful vocals, acoustic instrumentation, fluid rap, and spoken word.
A number of Wes students and recent alumni contributed to the album, including Jard Paul ’11, Jessica Best ’14, Tory Mathieson ’14, Gabe Gordon ’11, Louis Russo ‘11, Nate Mondschein ’12, and Mike Rosen ’11.
You can (and should!) download it on their bandcamp page.
Mel Hsu ’13 and Josh Smith ’11 met during Mel’s freshman fall at an open mic in Music House. Josh (known to many as Wordsmith) approached her about collaborating and a wonderfully fruitful friendship was born. Throughout the years and in a number of intimately crowded living rooms, the pair combined Josh’s fluid rap with Mel’s amazing cello skills and emotive singing to perform beautiful and unique shows that at times sent shivers down our spines and tears to our eyes. The duo is now hoping to release an album that, in this blogger’s opinion, is sure to make the world a more beautiful place.
If you’ve attended a living room show, you understand how important it is that this album becomes a reality. If you’ve never heard of Mel or Josh, it’s all the more important that you get a chance to experience this incredible musical Wes-born phenomenon. They’re hoping to distribute the album for free, but need some money to help produce it. It will for sure, no question, undoubtedly be worth your investment.
Donate now on their Kickstarter page.
For a taste of what’s to come, check out their respective Bandcamps: