LA WEEKLY was nice enough to give our upcoming Feb 25 show at Los Globos in Los Angeles, a shout out this week, and say a few nice words about our yet-to-be-released PLANS IN PROGRESS addendum / collection of fan-requested covers called SOUVENIRS.
Sarah Ellquist de Blanke’s dreamy vocals and her musical partner Daniel de Blanke’s shimmering synths give these new-wave and post-punk chansons a modern sheen, but the strangest track of all is their cover of Kenny Rogers‘ “Just Dropped in (to See What Condition My Condition Was in).” Rather than camping it up, Robotanists transform this corny country-music standard into a stirring, unexpectedly enchanting soundscape, as Sarah’s languidly ethereal singing trails off in the haze of Daniel’s blended acoustic guitars and distant-thunder percussion. Sometimes the most beautiful things happen in the strangest of places. — By Falling James
MORE ABOUT THE ALBUM…
We’ve been quietly working on the collection for a year or so in our spare time while sorting through requests to pick the final lucky 7, and working on a new album of original work. (…coming out later this year!!!!)
Admittedly, the Kenny Rogers tune was a favorite pick of ours as well – chosen (we hope) for its “Big Lebowski” relation.
Another fave is, 1984’s “The Karate Kid” kick ass motivational song, “You’re the Best Around.” The track was the first one we completed and actually ended up being the inaugural track for SYFFAL.com’s ‘pop cultures collide’ feature.
We got so many requests we would start them up then scrap them, and pick a few more, until they all felt like the right ones. In the end, we went for the weirder, the unknown, the over-covered and the unexpected, with only our fans in mind.
With plenty of noted covers under our belt, we were never really sure how, when or if we would release these, so we’ve just been casually floating the tracks around as we did them. They’ve never been mastered or available to download until now, so we’re excited to finally reveal them as a collection.
PS. We’re putting the finishing touches on it now, and hope to give away a few free download cards at our show in LA on Feb. 25!!! Hope to see you there!
We’ve been rehearsing with our new string ensemble, THE ARTIFICIAL HEARTSTRINGS, and its getting us pretty excited for our next show at the TROUBADOUR!!!!! We go on at 9 pm on Wednesday, and its ALL AGES, so bring the kids, its going to be a blast! Don’t forget, Andy Clockwise is headlining to celebrate the release of his new record THE SOCIALITE, so you won’t want to miss it! (BUY TICKETS)
Also, here’s some more recent press:
QRO MAGAZINE (NY / UK) >>
ALBUM REVIEW “A really ballsy rock n roll band. Beautiful, breathy vocals; style for miles; and epic compositional turns that pull you in without pretense.”
AMPLIFIER MAGAZINE (Boston) >>
ALBUM REVIEW “…seductive and ethereal, Plans in Progress melds the mechanical (synthesizers, midi-sequencing etc.) with the mortal (i.e. real instruments played by humans) akin to the legendary lads from Abingdon, Oxfordshire along with the sleek sexuality (and grooves) of latter day Blondie and Everything But The Girl.”
402 PRODUCTIONS (San Francisco) >>
ALBUM REVIEW “Robotanists are dreamscape designers who know how to make a great, great record… “The Lack Thereof” begins with a country twang, transitions into melodic-ballad heaven, and crescendos into spacey bliss that is something you would hear from Philip Glass. The melody snowballs into echoey euphoric vocals that sent chills down my spine.”
PS. First 50 people at the box office on Weds. get a FREE DOWNLOAD of our new album!
We’ve been spinning lately, prepping our new string ensemble for upcoming performances, working on new music and still recovering from SXSW. While we were running around in circles the last few weeks we happened to receive some great new press, that we will now share!
PAPER MAGAZINE >>>>
INTERVIEW with Sarah (“WORD UP” Feature)
THE DELI MAGAZINE >>>>
ALBUM + MUSIC VIDEO REVIEW ” Robotanists set themselves apart from most bands, keeping an upbeat and interesting style at the same time as being deep and sensual.”
INDIE ROCK REVIEWS >>>>
MUSIC VIDEO FEATURE | ALBUM REVIEW “Evocatively dreamlike without sacrificing command or precision. [Plans in Progress] moves consistently through a spectrum of hushed melodies, crashing choruses and driving rhythms. The Robotanists’ third full length album may be the shortest, but it’s the most relentless and auspicious in what lies ahead for the four piece.”
AERIAL NOISE >>>>
ALBUM + CONCERT REVIEW “concentrated dose of brilliance… and with an LP full of fetching tracks [Plans in Progress], whose gigantic choruses will penetrate your subconscious and stay there.”
EAT SLEEP BREATHE MUSIC >>>>
ALBUM REVIEW “Robotanists third album, Plans in Progress, is full of soulful melodies and soothing vocals. From beginning to end the listener is transported into a relaxing state of zen, mesmerized by singer Sarah DeBlanke’s vocals. The songs effortless blend together so that there isn’t a moment for the listener to jolt back to reality.”
MY FAVORITE MAOI >>>>
ALBUM REVIEW + INTERVIEW | CONCERT REVIEW | VIDEO OF THE DAY “Plans in Progress is an album filled with longing and discovery… Robotanists have an electric future ahead of them. Comparable to The Sounds, but ten folds better”
DANNY ZAM >>>>
ALBUM REVIEW (en español)
Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us and said nice things about us! You can check out more of our press clippings at our PRESS PHOTO ARCHIVE!
SEE US PERFORM NEXT >>>>
Our first music video from our new album PLANS IN PROGRESS, just premiered on NYC and Chicago-based music site, CONSEQUENCE OF SOUND, a “worldly influenced music blog that seeks to cover the music world as it has never has been covered before.”
The site had this to say about the video for “On/Off the Ledge” (Directed by Thomas Kenney)…
“Leave it to Los Angeles to keep things delectably weird. Robotanists, have issued a video for their new polished single, “On/Off Ledge”. If you haven’t heard the tune, it’s a dreamy, buttercup-tasting jingle, one that highlights vocalist/songwriter Sarah Ellquist’s melancholy-on-a-sunny-day melodies. Over a bath of lucid instrumentation from surrounding band mates, the song bounces and bubbles in ways that beg the listener to fly out to California, rent a convertible, and wave at passerbys who have miserable lives. Directed by Thomas Kenney, the four minute (and one second!) clip finds the band living their song. It’s bright, it’s balmy, and it’s everything California feels like to tourists. However, things go awry…” KEEP READING HERE.
More about the director…
Tom’s work can be viewed at www.flavr.tv
Kevin Bronson of BuzzBands.la recently listened to our new record and had some nice things to say about it…
“Over ghostly guitars and pulsing keys, Ellquist’s vocals strike a nice balance between sultry/detached and warm/inviting, and on this sophomore effort, produced by Danny Kalb, the foursome strikes out for a broader sonic atmosphere.”
“‘Let’s steal this moment / and go as fast as we can,’ Ellquist sings in the title track, and if this too-short album is any indication, Robotanists’ moment may very well be nigh.”
READ MORE @ BUZZBANDS.la
Also, our very own Sarah Ellquist sat down with FLAB Magazine editor Maria Colon and recently spoke about our new album, touring and more!
READ MORE @ FLABmag.com
Right after we sent out our 2010 wrap up we got a little more love for our covers record, released earlier this year, in anticipation of our new record…
ShutYourFuckingFaceAndListen.com gave us a few awesome shout outs for our covers record that came out earlier this year and a show review to boot!
Our covers record, SHAPES AND VARIATIONS came in at #5 in both of their TOP EPs of 2010 and 2010 BEST COVER SONGS year end lists, along side bands like White Sea, Twin Sisters, Holy Ghost, Sufjan Stevens and others.
“In the world of covers The Robotanists are fucking Picassos. They took a slew of played out pop songs and remade them in their own image and in doing so breathed new life into what should just have been a typical collection of covers.”
“Dance Dance Dance” was reworked [ROBOTANISTS] to the point that if you didn’t know any better you’d assume Lykke Li was covering them. They take ownership of this track and never look back.
Big thanks also to WildTonic.com for giving our Jay-Z Cover “Exiled State of Mind” the #2 spot in their best covers of 2010 list! We came in ahead of some amazing artists like Cee-Lo, Bird and the Bee and others!