Alex Northrup and the Backup is the latest project from the titular Alex Northrup. Backing up his vocals, Hammond organ and other keys are multi-instrumentalists Jacob Walsh on the drums and Andrew Carter on the bass guitar. Jacob is familiar to the Rochester scene through his work in Total Yuppies and Jon Lewis Band, and Andrew through his stint in Northern Spies (along with Alex himself). The band offers up a repertoire of songs from Alex’s solo album The Great Mundane (Proof That the Seacow Exists! Records, 2017) and an ever-growing number of new originals. His songs are rooted in classic rock and pop traditions without sounding dated or making any attempts at nostalgia. The “brilliant musicianship and nuanced songcraft...keeps you listening.” (Daniel J. Kushner, City Newspaper). Not content to rest on the laurels of that record, Alex Northrup and the Backup currently recording new material in Alex’s damp and dingy Rochester basement and the more comfortable environs of 1809 Studios in Macedon. Due out in early 2019, it’s another collection of songs sure to please those who appreciate their rock with an attention to detail and subtle twists and turns - “thinking person’s pop.”
Mars hails from Old Monroe, situated on the beautiful Whitewater Lake in central New York State. He is joined by The Swingstar band, comprised of the West brothers, August and Ulysses, and Gene Pilgrim — all members of Southern Star, who regularly back Mikaela Davis.
Grenshaw’s approach to songwriting demonstrates creativity as well as an appreciation for convention. Ballads spun on his steel-string guitar venture from Americana into psychedelia and back again, all the while serving as a vehicle in which The Swingstar Band can ride away and demonstrate their unique musical sensibilities.
To miss these shooting stars would be a pity!
Mars Grenshaw ................. Steel-string guitar Gene Pilgrim ............................... Electric bass August West ............................. Electric guitar Ulysses West ..................................... Drum kit
Here’s what City Newspaper’s Daniel Kushner wrote about Trevor’s latest…”Out on May 7, former Rochesterian Trevor Courneen's new full-length album "Taller Hearts Will Prevail" is steeped in lo-fi, 90's-tinged indie rock. Mixed and mastered by Courneen's long-time recording collaborator Ben Morey, the music has real polish. And while the album's nine tracks provide a comfy soundscape of warm, jangly guitar pop, it's the confessional vocal delivery and unassuming lyrics that tug at the listener's ears.
Courneen's conversational voice combines the earnestness of the late Elliott Smith with Conor Oberst's tonal vulnerability. Nowhere is that alchemy more apparent than on the sweetly sincere "Vowels." "Taller Hearts Will Prevail" really hits its stride halfway through, with back-to-back winners: "Kinds of Contact," with its catchy, circular melody, and the weirdly anthemic "All These Houses."