Minneapolis music

Charlie Bruber: “Bubble”

Prior to my career with KUTX, my main musical contributions were on trumpet as part of fifteen-piece’s hefty horn section. And speaking from personal experience, it’s incredibly liberating to spend time outside of a big group and redirect some focus towards solo songwriting. So based on his time playing bass with Minneapolis eleven-piece Black Market Brass, I’m sure that multi-instrumentalist/producer Charlie Bruber is having a ball breaking out and hopping behind the mic, front-and-center for the first time. This endeavor’s inception came when Bruber stumbled across the remarkably-rare EMS Polysynthi and picked up where Pink Floyd, Gong, and Tangerine Dream left off more than half a century ago. A bit before the start of the pandemic, Bruber holed up in his home studio and invited an assortment of friends and acquaintances to tinker around with the Polysynthi’s vast idiosyncratic potential. Next Tuesday the fruits of Charlie Bruber’s labor finally touch down with Finding the Muse. At sixteen tunes, Finding the Muse is a sprawling amalgamation of unfettered feelings, earworm melodies, and full-bodied arrangements that are a testament to unrushed, collaborative greatness. And today Charlie Bruber burst out with another infectiously-mellifluous offering ahead of Finding the Muse. Appearing at the LP’s halfway mark, “Bubble” confidently steers clear of over-saturated pop formulas with damp drumscapes, tranquil tempo shifts, and softly-sung phrases that sound like the vocal chords of Chaz Bundick, Roger Waters, and David Gilmour had a mellow lovechild.

The Cactus Blossoms: “Hey Baby”

Although Minneapolis brothers Page Burkum and Jack Torrey didn’t begin singing together until they were in their thirties, The Cactus Blossoms and their handsome harmonies have already flourished a reputation that gives The Everly Brothers a run for their money. A half decade after The Cactus Blossoms released their debut LP You’re Dreaming and just two since their 2019 sophomore Easy Way, Burkum and Torrey have just announced a new full-length, One Day.

One Day drops February 11th of next year and The Cactus Blossoms have shared a little bit of its pollen early to keep our honey jar healthy, courtesy of the record’s soft-spoken, indie-folk-foot-tap lead single, “Hey Baby”!

Sweet And Lonely: “Days Like These”

With a new post-humous Prince album out in the world, all eyes are back on Minneapolis. But it’s safe to say that there’s plenty of life in the Twin Cities aside from the dearly departed Purple One. Case in point: Nick Elstad, who produces bedroom pop under the name Sweet and Lonely. As the handle suggests, Elstad’s original compositions are sparse in all the right places but carry some seriously affectionate emotional weight while avoiding being completely saccharine.

Early last week Sweet and Lonely shared their latest single “Days Like These”, channeling the psych-pop aura of Tame Impala without any of the pretentiousness, and surefire to entrance you with its upbeat-but-ethereal groove!

Sarah Walk: “The Key”

After taking the first step with her 2017 debut twelve-track Little Black Book, Minneapolis singer Sarah Walk hit a stride of orchestral indie pop rock arrangements, poignantly honest lyrics, and above all, an immensely moving vocal delivery with each performance. Walk rinsed and repeated with similar patterns and formulas for her sophomore full-length, Another Me, last August, showing that she can give the likes of Imogen Heap and Florence and the Machine a run for their money. But for her third record, Walk’s backtracked into stripped-down subtleties.

Her six-song EP simply contains three alternate versions of Another Me compositions, along with a cover of fellow Minneapolis native Prince for a wispy listening experience. simply drops tomorrow and today you can unlock its driving final single, “the key”!