Saturday, December 4, 2021

"In Gray & Blue" by Massage

LA band Massage really didn't need to do anything more to earn a place in our musical hears this year. Debut LP Still Life is only five months old and is one of the best albums we have covered in 2021. However, sometimes talent doesn't rest, and Massage comes back this month with the six-track Lane Lines EP. We will have more to write about the EP next week when it is out via Mt.St.Mtn., but we can assure you that there is no drop in quality. And our opinion is underscored by the new single from the EP, "In Gray & Blue. Enjoy!


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Bandcamp for Lane Lines EP

Friday, December 3, 2021

"Partner Look" by Partner Look

 


Musicians, siblings, friends, and romantic partners -- please meet Partner Look. The band consists of Lachlan Denton (The Ocean Party/Pop Filter/others), Dainis Lacey (Cool Sounds), and sisters Ambrin Hasnain (Cool Sounds) and Anila Hasnain (Studio Magic). Since we have covered all of those projects in the past, it is no surprise that we find the sound of Partner Look to excite our musical taste buds. The name of the band is refers to the German word "partnerlook" which applies to two people wearing same outfits. Credit for that goes to the German-born Ambrin and Anila, who taught the term to their partners Cainis and Lachlan, respectively.

What Partner Look promises to deliver is sparkling guitar pop with song contributions by all of its members. Debut album By The Book will be available on February 4, but you can hear the first single, "Partner Look" (how is that for direct marketing?) below. Engaging, emotionally and smart, this is just the song we wanted to start our weekend.

By The Book will be released by Trouble In Mind in North America, and Osborne Again in Australia.

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Thursday, December 2, 2021

"Pour the Light In" by The Reds, Pinks & Purples

Glenn Donaldson  has released "Pour In The Light", the second single from his February 2022 release under his current banner The Reds, Pinks & Purples. With plenty of jangle and chime, and Glenn's hushed vocals riding an upbeat melody, it is another reminder that this artist is in the midst of an extraordinary period of creative excellence.
 
The new album is titled Summer At Land's End and it will be released via Slumberland Records in North America and Tough Love Records in UK/Europe. Vinyl collectors should note that there are two vinyl versions. One is a single disc of Summer At Land's End. The other version contains the album plus another disc of instrumental songs (not instrumental versions of the album's songs). I would not be surprised if both versions sell out in the pre-order stage.

The Aerosols - Room For Wrong

 

San Francisco' indie scene is having a very good year. We are going to highlight two reasons in succession. The first is Room For Wrong by a four-member band called The Aerosols. Consisting of Joe Z. Armin (guitar/vocals), Amy Fowler (guitar/keys/backing vocals), Josh Bevalacqua (bass), and Raul Sanchez (drums), The Aerosols concoct a bracing mix of hooks, '80s guitar vibes, and jangle. And they aren't shy about getting a bit weird, but never in a distracting way. They remind us a bit of Seattle's heroes of the past The Young Fresh Fellows. And if you remind WYMA Blog of The Young Fresh Fellows, you know we like you.

Room For Wrong is out now in digital and vinyl formats via the band's Land of the Lost Records.




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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

"Dancing To The Hits" / "Slow Motion Fade Out" by The Bordellos

Liverpool's The Bordellos, one of our favorite creators of indie pop fractured by damaged romance, has a new two-song single. Consisting of "Dancing To The Hits" and "Slow Motion Fade Out", it is an ace reminder that affecting pop music doesn't require banks of synths, professional beat makers and hook specialists and big label studio budgets. Inspiration, talent and a can-do attitude can work magic.

The single is out now via Metal Postcard Records.


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Sunday, November 28, 2021

"Roll The Dice" by Atom Eyes

 


A plentitude of indie hooks riding a jazz-funk soundtrack and fronted by a dynamic and soulful vocalist? Yes please, we would like some more of that. The band is Edinburgh's Atom Eyes, and the song is their new single "Roll The Dice". The band aims to make feelgood tunes, and if the single is representative, they deliver on the promise.

Atom Eyes are Lissa, Fraser, Scott, Alan, and Tom. "Roll The Dice" is taken from their forthcoming album

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Bandcamp for February 2021 3-song release


"Define Your Dreams" by Azure Blue


 If we were nominating a small number of artists for the status of synth pop royalty, Tobias Isaksson, who records and performs as Azure Blue, certainly would be included. His gorgeous melodies and romantic themes washed with melancholy have thrilled and soothed us over the years. Recently, as he celebrates the ten year anniversary of the release of Rule of Thirds -- the first of his five Azure Blue albums, the Swedish artist announced that a new album would be coming in 2022 and released a positive and uplifting new single, "Define Your Dreams'. Stream it below and watch for further news of the album.

The single, which is out now as a digital release, and the album are provided via Hybris with distribution handled by ALOADED.


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Tuesday, November 23, 2021

"Gone West" by Kaputt

"Gone West" is the sound of youth, fun, and 'I don't give a fuck'. Most importantly, it makes me feel like I shed a couple of decades and that, dear readers, is priceless! The song is by Glasgow post punk band Kaputt and is taken from their upcoming second album. As of this post the album has neither a name nor a set release date other than sometime in the first half of 2022. However, your ears will convince you that Kaputt should be on your 2022 list. And in the meantime, you can grab this digital single from your favorite digital purveyor.

Both the single and the upcoming album are released via Upset The Rhythm. And those of you in Great Britain and Ireland should take note of the live show dates and venues listed at the bottom of the post. 


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Upset The Rhythm

NOV 2021
25th - Manchester @ The White Hotel
26th - Sheffield @ Delicious Clam 
27th - London @ Sebright Arms 
28th - Bristol @ The Lanes 
29th - Leeds @ Wharf Chambers 
30th - York @ Fulford Arms 

DEC 2021
1st - Newcastle @ Cumberland Arms
10th - Glasgow @ Stereo 

JAN 2022
13th - Glasgow @ St Luke’s 
26th - Belfast @ Empire w/ SQUID 
27th - Galway @ Roisin Dubh w/ SQUID 
28th - Cork @ Cyprus Avenue  w/ SQUID 
30th - Dublin @ Button Factory w/ SQUID 

31st - Dublin @ Button Factory w/ SQUID 

Monday, November 22, 2021

"Don't You Grow Up" by Kindsight

Young Copenhagen four-piece Kindsight are a breath of fresh air in the guitar pop world. They have the shiny pop accents of their native Scandinavia, but thicken the sound with elements of alternative rock. We won't be able to hear their upcoming debut album until the first part of 2022, but we have their new single "Don't You Grow Up". The song shows off the band's warm, sunny style but also shows the band has the muscle to rock out.

Kindsight are Nina Hyldgaard Rasmussen (vocals/guitar), Soren Svensson (guitar), Anders Prip (bass), and Johannes Jacobsen (drums). Don't You Grow Up" is out now via Stockhom's Rama Lama Records, which also will release the album.

Sunday, November 21, 2021

The Exbats - Now Where Were We


 Now Where Were We seems like the perfect album title for this post because we have been a bit negligent in our goal to make at least one post a day. But the only remedy is to dive back in, so we begin again in covering music we like that you might otherwise miss.

This album is by a southern Arizona band named The Exbats. We note that none of the four members  of this group actually were ever a member of the legendary New Zealand quartet The Bats, but this 12-track album they have created easily is among the most fun set of songs we have heard this year. End to end energetic guitar pop with clever lyrics and a sassy-with-a-wink delivery. If you like your garage rock fun and with a dose of attitude, this is a can't miss acquisition.

The Exbats are Kenny McLain, Inez McLain and Bobby Carlson Jr. Now Where Were We is out now via Goner Records.



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Thursday, November 18, 2021

"You Wanna Be My Man" (video) by The Shivas

May we assume that in light of our laudatory feature of Feels So Good // Feels So Bad by Portland's The Shivas (link) everyone has a copy? We certainly hope so. But if you haven't done so, you can slink off and get yourself the album. And to give you some additional incentive (as if our previous praise isn't sufficient), here is their new video for album track "You Wanna Be My Man".


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Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Dean Wareham - I Have Nothing to Say to the Mayor of L.A.


Dean Wareham is a very talented guy, as evidenced by his songcraft, guitar work and singing with Galaxie 500, Luna and Dean & Britta. But another aspect of his art, which we personally appreciate quite a bit, is his ability to intertwine social and political commentary with warm vocals and clever phrasing, delivered via his delightful guitar pop melodies. His first album under his own name in seven years, the recently released I Have Nothing To Say To The Mayor Of L.A., displays these talents to great effect, providing soup to nuts satisfaction for the head as well as the heart.

The melodies are great, and the guitars via Dean and producer Jason Quever (Papercuts) are an absolute, and appealingly varied, delight. Britta Phillips, Dean's spouse and bandmate in Luna and Dean & Britta, also pitches in to play and sing, adding nuance and depth to the songs. The production is crisp overall, but the most laudable production aspect is that Dean's vocals are high in the mix. A listener should not have to strain to hear lyrics that deserve being heard, and these lyrics deserve to be heard. As I have played this album over and over, and appreciating it more each time, I find myself grabbing snatches of the lyrics and applying them to my daily life (often with the same whimsical effect one gets listening to the original). The one I repeated most often today was "the past is our plaything -- she can't talk back" from the album opener, but that is just a taste because this album is full of gems. Not surprisingly, the album mostly consists of new material, but there are two covers including "Dutchess" which was written by Scott Walker. We've included the video for that one below so you can see Dean performing it.

I Have Nothing To Say To The Mayor Of L.A. is not only one of the better guitar pop albums of the year, it also is an album we expect to be playing years down the road. It is out now via Double Feature Records.





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