Thursday, June 18, 2020

Medicine Men - A Different Port

Medicine Men have a knack for catchy, often anthemic, guitar pop with electronic elements expanding the sound. A Different Port, the Scottish band's second album, contains ten songs that display their ability to create music that seem instantly familiar and relatable. The tones are warm, the melodies pleasant and the tempo is upbeat. There isn't a weak track on the album, but several push their way forward as special musical moments, including "Back On Board" and "Getaway Driver" (both of which are superb tunes to accompany a drive to the beach or the mountains).

Several years have elapsed since Medicine Men's well-received debut. It is clear to us that they have used the time well, as this album is unusually substantial and consistent for a sophomore effort.  Sitting on the patio in the morning sunlight with a mug of coffee and A Different Port playing, this day seems full of promise.

The album is out now in digital, vinyl and CD formats via Last Night From Glasgow.

Label page for A Different Port
Last Night From Glasgow web shop

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

ManaRays - ManaRays

When we discovered that there was a label in Brisbane named Swashbuckling Hobo Records we knew that we needed to feature one of their releases. You see, for all of us at WYMA our second choice at school Career Day was to be a Swashbuckling Hobo. Unfortunately, we all were accepted to law school, resulting in the world losing much needed Swashbuckling Hobos and burdening mankind with more lawyers. What can we say -- we are so sorry.

But the great news is that we didn't have to lower our standards to bring you a record from this label. In fact, the self-titled album by Brisbane's ManaRays is just what will get all of is through this week to the next weekend. Packed with gritty blues rock with indie rock hooks and a punk attitude, this is deeply satisfying indie rock to rattle your windows and gladden your souls. You don't need to go to the pub to party under stay at home orders. Have some beverages delivered, cue up ManaRays, and the pub has come home.

The band are Adrian Carroll (vocals/guitar), Micky Scott (drums/percussion), Phil Dunlea (bass/backing vocals/percussion), Chris Fletcher (vocals), and Sly Faulkner (backing vocals). ManaRays is out now on Swashbuckling Hobo Records.

Bandcamp for album
Swashbuckling Hobo Records' website

"Terry" by RULES

We are happy to bring you an absolutely lovely synth pop tune by Helsinki's RULES. "Terry" is officially released on June 18, but the video is available now and provides us with a great excuse to not wait to fill our ears with the gorgeous melody and soaring vocals. The song is based on rhe Raymond Carver short story What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.

RULES are Iiti Yli-Harja (lead vocals/synth), Sarra Keppola (synth/guitar/backing vocals), and Oskari Halsti (drums/backing vocals/guitar). Their music is released via Soliti Music.


"Out Of Sight" by The Beths (video)

We think everyone can use a Beth (or two or three) in their lives. Regardless of whether you are at optimum Beth level or in a deficit, we suggest you pay attention to the most excellent New Zealand band The Beths. They have wowed us with everything they have released so far, and we are eagerly anticipating the July 10th drop of new album Jump Rope Gazers. To help you understand why, we share with you the video for the latest single from the LP, "Out Of Sight". It strikes us as having the perfect mix of dreamy wistfulness and freewheeling crunch.

Jump Rope Gazers will be released via Carpark Records.

Carpark Records

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - Sideways to New Italy

Building on the momentum of their first LP, Hope Downs, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever sprint down their chosen path carrying the banner for upbeat, crunchy, jangling guitar pop on their new Sideways to New Italy. But in doing so, they display the ability to explore the edges of their craft and create intriguing derivations such as in the '80s dance pop of "The Only One" (which gives us some welcome Prince vibes". The themes are reflective, encompassing search for personal worth, belonging and context in a complex world. But searching and incisive lyrics never weigh down the proceeding, and the listener is rewarded with an album full of meaning and good sounds, and especially a well-hone three-guitar attack..

We know some who believe that these guys are the best guitar pop band around right now. For ourselves, we aren't anointing anyone a king at this point, but Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever is certainly worthy of consideration. And from personal experience, they provide a great live show.

Sideways to New Italy is out now in all formats via Sub Pop.

Bandcamp for Album