Monday, March 25, 2019
If your work week is starting like ours, you need a soundtrack that isn't too jarring. May we suggest that you begin as we did, with the new EP from Austin, Texas band She Sir? The six tracks of Ways A Season reveal a band creating a richly detailed shoegaze and dream pop evoking an alternative My Bloody Valentine that is more interested in pleasing and intriguing than shocking and bludgeoning. For us, this EP is the aural equivalent of sitting on a beach having warm waves gently surround you. Give it a try!
Ways A Season is out now in digital and vinyl formats via Austin Town Hall Records.
Bandcamp for EP
Friday, March 22, 2019
The lyrical content reflects a keen inner eye and sufficient detachment to tell the story in a relatable fashion. For us, highlights are "Heather Army", "Learn Your Lines" (Claire's take on learning to play the role to make it in a male dominated industry, we think), "Moving Blankets", and "Wear Me Out". But there are no weak songs, and while we think the band gels best on the more up-tempo songs, they always deliver. Then again, Claire could probably sing the dumpling menu at Dough Zone and we'd ask for an encore.
Next weekend we will announce our favorite five or six albums for the first quarter of 2019. Expect to see Loose Wing on the list.
In addition to Claire Tucker (guitar/vocals/keys), Loose Wing are Jack Peters (bass), Rusty Willoughby (drums), and Bill Patton (guitar/pedal steel). Loose Wing is out now in vinyl and digital formats; see the Bandcamp link below.
Bandcamp for album
Thursday, March 21, 2019
Credit Rama Lama Records, and emerging bright light on the Swedish music landscape, for recognizing this young talent and providing her with a platform. fEELz is out now in digital and vinyl formats.
Bandcamp for fEELz EP
Soundcloud for fEELz EP
Various links to source EP
Wednesday, March 20, 2019
If you are a long-time reader you know what to expect -- sweet melodies, sharp hooks and plenty of jangle. And Laz delivers what we expect every time.
And all three songs -
Bandcamp for Our Mother's House EP
Tuesday, March 19, 2019
The Vapour Trails are Scott Robertson (lead guitar/vocals), Nicholas Mackie (vocals/rhythm guitar), Kev Robertson (vocals/rhythm guitar), Andrew Crossan (bass), and Kenny Munro (drums/percussion).
Various links to source "Sanity"
Monday, March 18, 2019
Long running Philadelphia band Half Japanese has dropped their fifth album, and we think it is a good one. Injecting a good bit more melody and structure into their trademark noise generation machine, Invincible lives up to its name in hinting that Half Japanese can, and should, continue their rock and roll production indefinitely. Of course, Jad Fair still is Jad Fair, so the lyrical themes include horror movies and romance, all a bit free-wheeling and off kilter to be sure, but that just makes it more entertaining. A sublime merger of the primitive and pop songcraft -- enjoy!
For Invincible, Half Japanese are Jad Fair, John Sluggett, Gilles-Vincent Rieder, Jason Willett, and Mick Hobbs. The album is out now in vinyl, CD, and digital formats via Fire Records.
Bandcamp for Invincible
Fire Records page for Half Japanese
Thursday, March 14, 2019
You just rolled into town after a long day of driving in the American southwest. Check into the hotel and ask where to get a good meal without getting too fancy, and some music would be a plus. They direct you to the tavern next door. The menu is just what you need, and you notice musicians setting up at a stage at the end of the room. It looks like they will start soon, and you hope that they play what you want, as your day hasn't left you in the mood for hard rock or modern country with the excessive twang and obligatory references to 4x4s and flags. Then they begin, and the tension of the long drive leaves your shoulders, your fatigue evaporates, and you order another beer. Because what you are hearing is just what you needed. Subdued, jazzy arrangements with a lot of piano and acoustic guitar, and lyrics focusing on romance and reflection. A lead singer with a warm baritone named Howe Gelb and a host of talented guest vocalists. You are told that most songs are original creations, but the set list includes Lenard Cohen's "A Thousand Kisses" (a duet with M. Ward) and my new favorite version of "Blue Moon", voiced by Howe's daughter Talula.
It is all over too soon, but you wander to the merch table and discover that the material is available on a 15-track album titled Gathered, which is out now via Fire Records. You recall now that Howe Gelb has been working the stage at roots rocker Giant Sand with various mates over the years, but that his solo recordings are more in line with the late night, low key material on Gathered, and they are justifiably expanding his fan base. You head to bed feeling relaxed, peaceful, and very fortunate. And for tomorrow's drive, you have your road music.
[Note: Certain liberties with respect time, space and reality were taken in drafting this post, but only with the best intentions and with the approval of our legal department.]
Bandcamp for Gathered
Fire Records page for Howe Gelb