Port City Music
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Port City Music

Band Alternative Rock

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Apr
19
Port City Music @ Doozers Pub

Jacksonville, Florida, USA

Jacksonville, Florida, USA

Apr
12
Port City Music @ Sentient Bean

Savannah, Georgia, USA

Savannah, Georgia, USA

Apr
07
Port City Music @ Scad Radio

savannah, Georgia, USA

savannah, Georgia, USA

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Music

Press


Port City Music deserves your attention. Better yet, the local independent, alternative group deserves airtime.
Their self-titled CD is a break from the typical local band. It's like getting a little rain when it's just too superficially sunny...
The vocals of songwriter Philip Palmer, haunt you...Palmer's voice becomes a ghost you can't shake.
Think Nick Cave or Leonard Cohen Fronting a band comprised of equal parts the The, Sonic Youth, The Pixies, Low, and The Church.
Also think about heading over to the band's CDr release party Saturday. Then you can say you saw them before they got "big"...

Keala Murdock - Savannah Morning News


Port City Music has emerged as perhaps Savannah's best bet for an alternative rock success story. Their songs are tight, textured and multidimensional. Plus, their stage demeanor is all business.

Jim Reed
Connect Savannah - Jim Reed, Connect Savannah


Port City Music started as a solo project by Philip Palmer, the former frontman of Florida alt-rock band Drake Equation*. For now, it's a band, and they're playing several songs from Philip's self titled album, Port City Music, plus a few songs written with the entire group. The music itself is dark and moody, falling somewhere between Love and Rockets and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, with some creative flares reminiscent of the Talking Heads. The eponymous, self-produced CD is truly an under-recognized local work worthy of praise it hasn't yet received. As raw as it is, it's still probably one of the best albums as a whole to be made in Savannah in the last few years.

Tadd Trueb
Editor, Murmer Magazine

* Editor mistook two bands with the same name. Philip Palmer fronted an Athens Ga band called Drake Equation. - Tadd Trueb, Murmer Magazine


Monday, March 05, 2007

Artist Spotlight: Port City Music
Current mood: accomplished


Local Artist Spotlight: Port City Music's Philip Palmer
The Inkwell, Week of Jan. 25, 2007

Anyone familiar with Savannah's music scene for the past few years probably knows the now-former band Vermillion X. They may even know the band Port City Music. But a name they might not know is Philip Palmer, the founding member and principal songwriter in both of those groups.

For Palmer, a native of Savannah, making music is pretty much his life. Both of his parents were critically lauded jazz musicians who toured extensively in the U.S. during the sixties and seventies. Music is in his blood, and he took up that calling at an early age. He started playing in bands around the age of 15 after listening to records by Alice Cooper and Elton John, the latter of which he cites as a major influence on his songwriting. Later years brought more and more influences, ranging from X and Television to Morphine and Iron Maiden.

This gamut of influential music in his life has led Palmer to constantly seek new ways to stretch his musical perceptions. During the late eighties and most of the nineties, he lived in Athens, GA and tried to make his way in that fabled music Mecca, but found the scene there lacking. Disappointed, he moved back to Savannah in 1998 and put together Vermillion X, apparently with the intention of playing a shingle show.

"When I formed Vermillion X, my goal was to put a band together, do a record, and play a show." Palmer says. "That was literally all I wanted to do. And very quickly, I had gone beyond what the original goal was, just by playing more shows, and getting some decent press and all that stuff."

"And the funny thing is that it wasn't enough! It's like, 'We got to get another show, we got to do this and that,' but finally I had to look back and realize since I'd set out to get reinvolved in music I'd done a lot of things I'm really happy with, you know? I've written a lot of music that I like better probably than any other music I'd written prior. That to me is primary."

His newest band, Port City Music, which started a few years ago as an outlet for Palmer's solo writing, is a culmination of the psychedelic music influencees on Palmer over the years and his penchant for the odd things in life. Deceptively simple beats overlaid with precise melodies and harmonis and lush, ethereal guitar licks create the backdrop for his thoughtful lyrical approach. Palmer is proud of his present work, and confesses that Port City Music is probably his favorite project that he has done so far. He considers himself a bassist, but plays other instruments and is a prodigious songwriter--writing nearly all the material for Vermillion X and Port City Music in addition to having recorded literally hundreds of pieces of music.

I've had the good fortune to share the stage with Palmer, albeit in separate bands, and can attest to the magnetism of his approach to performing. You hang on his every word, every note, and every subtlety in the song, and before you kow it, it's over and you're left wanting more. It also doesn't hurt that he's one of the most genuinely nice people you'll ever meet. His honest attitude toward what he does is a fresh reminder that there are still those who consider music more than an excuse to show off their tacky jewelry or emo hair.

"I make music because if I'm going to be me then that includes making music. "

Port City Music plays February 10 at SCAD's Orleans Hall, at 201 Barnard St. For more information, go to www.portcitymusic.com or www.myspace.com/sauriandream


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- Inkwell-By Pat Hamilton-Staff Writer


Here is a band from the USA (Savannah, Georgia, to be precise) with a ten track CD that contains everything from warm, Go Betweens-style indie-pop fuzz ("Sunday Best", "Field Day", "You Should Care") to intense ballads (the hushed "Rachael" - which was praised in a previous issue of HY! when it appeared on a compilation CD - and "Sitting Beat", a wonderfully moody song reminiscent of Nick Cave) and sampled shenanigans ("American Daydream"). Then there's the bargain basement Beach Boys romp of "Proletariat Party Song", "Flight" (with lilting chorus and charming female back-up vocals) and, perhaps the greatest song here, "Where Were You?" which appears in two versions, but the "Reprise" is the superior one, bringing to mind - as it does - Idaho (the band, not the state) in it's gentle splendor. - Hiroshima Yeah!


Discography

Port City Music (self titled) 2006

Photos

Bio

Blending straight-forward, fuzz pedal-infused rock n roll with densley textured, cinematic compositions, Port City Music is a Savannah, GA based quintet that is out to prove that the legacy of Southern Rock is more complex than a beer-drunk crowd chanting "Free Bird." Drawing from a diverse list of influences spanning decades and continents, including Nick Cave, Morphine, Sonic Youth, Joy Division, Syd Barrett, Dinosaur Jr., and Jeff Buckley, Port City Music's sound walks the line between dark and light, joy and pain, pop and noise, to create what lead singer/songwriter Philip Palmer describes as "melodic dissonance."

Drawing inspiration from the sprawling industrial section of West Savannah bordering the city's massive port, littered with generically-named businesses that include Port City in their name, Palmer set out to create a driving rock soundtrack for the dark, grimey section of his city as well as its historic, antebellum haunts and charms. Balancing between ominous, ambient moments and bright, engaging rock, Port City Music paints musical portraits of the city using evocative guitar riffs and rich, image-laden lyrics.

Born from the ashes of Palmer's previous project, Vermillion X, Port City Music began as an umbrella project for several unused songs that Palmer, a veteran of the music scenes of Savannah and Athens alike, never got to perform. However, the new group quickly grew into a full five-piece band that reached far beyond the musical scope of any of his previous bands. Palmer (baritone guitar, bass, and vocals) joined forces with his Vermillion X bandmate, and former member of Spluffcutunga Toby Taylor (lead guitar) and the duo then grew to include Chris Van Brackle (drums), Aami Stafford (keys, guitar, vocals), and Amanda Dickey (bass). Port City Music went from being a simple recording project to touring act that has played shows to rave reviews throughout Savannah and the Southeast, including Charleston, Augusta, and Athens.

As the band continues to explore the musical terrain between suffering and redemption, angst and euphoria, they have headed into the studio to begin work on a new album and will be touring extensively to help promote the project. For fans of real rock and roll who aren't afraid to delve into the possibilities of sound, texture, and composition, Port City Music is the band you've been looking for.