February 26, 2014

J.C. & Anphibius Make Their Memorials to ‘Uneasy Listening Music’ Available to Download

JC anph banner


Before Anton Sword, there was Anphibius – half of the NYC-based, Europe-trotting duo J.C. & Anphibius that crept across stages from 1999-2006 purveying their special brand of “Uneasy Listening” Music. Now the duo has made their music available again (oh no!) on Bandcamp.  https://jcandanphibius.bandcamp.com/

J.C. and Anphibius met in the frog pond of New York’s Lower East Side in the 1990s after seeing each other play in their respective bands Glim and Individual Fruit Pie. After a shy courtship they elected to croak in unison, and so began to write newly hatched songs of love found and mislaid. From 1999 to 2006 the duo wove and spread their melodic but minimal skein of sound across the Atlantic, where it caressed both shores several times, triggered some delicate ripples, and slowly sank beneath the waves without a murmur. It left in its tiny wake only a hush, a sigh, a small puddle on a table, and 3 CDs.

J.C.‘s fetishistic tales of love, lost love, and self-love combine a fragile melancholy with a naughty wit. Anphibius’ music is sometimes mesmerizingly bare, and sometimes lush and poppy. Influences cited by awestruck audiences included Lee Hazlewood, Burt Bacharach, Erik Satie, Leonard Cohen, Carole King, and Jarvis Cocker.

The duo’s strategy of presenting songs in their most honest, naked form leaves plenty of space for listeners to contemplate their own sins. Tender and sprinkled with sophisticated humor, the songs themselves make you feel as if you’re in your own sitting room sipping cognac.

After these eternal umpteenagers quit the field in 2006 (well, there was one wedding gig in 2008, to be completist), the duo split to begin new lives in Amsterdam (J.C.) and in New York under a new name, Anton Sword (Anphibius). But their unique mood remains preserved in this series of recorded specimens.

Experiencing J.C. & Anphibius may not change your life. The only guarantee is that every song will tell a story.


February 14, 2014

Valentine’s Day Playlist

House of Speakeasy, hosts of our Feb 24 show at City Winery, asked me to write a short list of Valentine’s Day love songs for  their blog. Here’s a link to my list & the blog post:


See if you have any tunes you’d add. Happy Valentine’s Day. x

house of speakeasy blog

February 12, 2014

Two Songs Beginning With L

Thursday Feb. 13 a double single, Two songs beginning with L, will be available on Bandcamp (here). Song one is a revised version of ‘Listening’ (a 2010 song from City of Oblivion) in a more electronic style; Song two is ‘Learning’, which was originally inspired by Joy Division’s ‘Disorder’ and PiL’s ‘Public Image’ (now that you know that, it will be obvious, I think), but somehow came out more cheerful than expected. Both tracks feature guitar by Michael Lawson and bass by Gina Marie Rodriguez. Ethan Donaldson co-mixed track 2.  You can also stream them on Soundcloud here and here.

2songs beg L

February 5, 2014

Uma Thurman added to City Winery show Feb 24 -

In addition to Steve Coogan, Susan Minot, Tom Reiss, Dana Vachon, and myself, Uma Thurman will be hosting a literary quiz. Here’s the updated website link:


Tickets are here.     And the participant bios/details are here:

The Writers   House of SpeakEasy NYC

February 1, 2014

City Winery Show – House of Speakeasy writers/songwriters series

We’re honored and excited to be playing the City Winery in Soho this month as part of the House of Speakeasy’s writers series. Several writers speak and one songwriter plays. This night will include writer/actor/producer Steve Coogan (24-Hour Party People, Philomena, The Trip, I’m Alan Partridge), novelist/writer/poet Susan Minot (Monkeys, Folly), historian/journalist Tom Reiss (The Black Count, The Orientalist), essayist/journalist Dana Vachon, and yours truly. Sat Feb 24. Good food, good wine. Monday February 24.

The series website from House of Speakeasy:

A little more detail on the participants:


Tickets here