Unsigned Bands: Black Math (US) and Black Math (South Africa)

By Chris McGinty (AccordingToWhim.com)

The problem with this modern era
is that since everybody has a band, and everybody is online (I exaggerate a
little), there seem to be a lot of bands who come up with the same name. Today,
we will talk about two of them.
Black Math (Chicago, Illinois)
I’ll start with the band I found
first, back in late 2011. Black Math is a band from Chicago, and I’m not even too sure if they’re
still around. When I found them, they had 1 single, 2 EPs, and 1 full album
available to download, so I did. And I listened to them every night for an
entire winter. I still listen to them a lot. Their website seemed abandoned, so
they may have already been disbanded before I started listening to them. Now it
looks like the website is gone.
Black Math has a sound that I’m
part of the target audience for. It’s a low-fi, hint of new wave, alternative
rock. This is why I listened to them so much. They were wedged right into one
of my genres of choice.
This is their Last FM page:
This review has a Mediafire link
to download their Counterfeit Unrealities (EP)
There is a lot available on You
Tube. We’ll start with a live video they did for a video series on Chicago bands. I’ve
listened to a number of the bands that were part of this series, and I might
post about some of them another day. Then after the live video, I’ll link
everything else I can find, in roughly the order of how much I enjoy the song
(note that I enjoy them all a lot).
Black Math – Bottomless Sea
Black Math – Reckless Thoughts
Black Math – High Dive
Black Math – Part of Me
Black Math – Did He Get 2U1st
Black Math – Suck City
As a quick aside, I found
pictures of them on Flickr that seemed to be part of a professional shoot, so I
contacted the photographer to make sure it was ok to use a picture, since I
wasn’t borrowing it from the band’s website. She was super cool, so I want to
give her a quick link here.
Check out her blog on the
website. She has a lot of great work on there. I particularly liked her
photographs of India,
linked below. Check out the nighttime shot on the water.
The Devils
Let me take a quick break from
the unsigned bands, and point you in the direction of something major label,
but underground, that I found out about soon after I started listening to Black
Math. It’s the Duran Duran side project known as The Devils. You can tell what
kind of listening mood I was in at the time. These were modern recordings of
early Duran Duran songs (I mean previously unreleased early) when Stephen Duffy
was the lead singer. He and Nick Rhodes got together to record the tracks using
old demos as their sound map.
The Devils – Memory Palaces
The Devils – Hawks Do Not Share
The Devils – Big Store
The Devils – Dark Circles
Black Math (South Africa)
There is also a Black Math from South Africa.
If I didn’t like them all that much, I would probably just ignore their
existence and pretend that there is only one Black Math. But I think they’re
quite good. There is a White Stripes song called “Black Math,” and as you hear
this group, you’ll presume like I do, that that’s where they got their name.

Black Math – Scandinavian
Black Math – The Devil Will Eat
There’s also a White Stripes
cover on their You Tube.
And an interview with them here:

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