Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Jeanines - Don't Wait For A Sign

The spirit of C86 is strong with New York City's Jeanines. They do no-frills guitar pop that focuses the listener's attention where it should be focused: The harmonies and hooks riding the jangling guitar and rubbery bass lines. Their new album is the crisp and charming Don't Wait For A Sign. Many of the LP's songs seem to shoulder into the space between crash pop, twee and jangle pop, the first of which, to our ears, gives the material a sense of immediacy and punch. There also are elements of '60s folk rock that amplify the charm factor. Concision is the order of the day, as none of the 13 songs breaks the two-minute mark. But we think it is a confident and adept choice to end a song where the song should be ended rather than to hit some artificial length related to radio play that isn't in the cards anyway. Our user's guide to this album is: Spring is here and these songs will add plenty of sunshine and energy to bridge you to the summer; repeat as needed.

Jeanines are Alicia Jeanine (vocals/guitar) and Jed Smith (bass/drums). Don't Wait For A Sign is out now via Slumberland Records.




Bandcamp for album

Various links for the album and the band

"Open Up The Box" by The Boys With The Perpetual Nervousness

 Every day is a good day for new music from The Boys With The Perpetual Nervousness. "Open Up The Box" is a warm and generous power pop gem. It jangles and sparkles with a slightly more dreamy Teenage Fanclub vibe. Cue it up, and the sun might break through in your part of the world. It did for us.

TBWTPN are Andrew Taylor and Gonzalo Marcos. "Open Up The Box" is out now as a digital single via Bobo Integral Records.



Bandcamp for single

Various links for single

Monday, April 25, 2022

Yea-Ming & The Rumours - So, Bird ...

So, what is it about So, Bird..., the new album by Yea-Ming & The Rumors? Although I covered their prior album I wasn't aware that this one was released until last week, yet I now think it is going to be in my rotation for months to come. I can't easily point to a classification that encompasses the whole, but I have no trouble pointing to elements that make this an endearing album. There is a lot of '60s folk rock, with jangle, reverb, a bit of country-rock twang, and catchy sing-along melodies. But there also are songs that seem more akin to modern dreampop or just timeless folk. 

Thematically, So, Bird... is remarkable as well. The lyrics are introspective, personal and direct, but not uncomfortably so due to the upbeat arrangements and the lovely vocals by Yea-Ming Chen. This is the sort of songwriting that, if life in the music world was fair, would make legends. After all, it worked for Lee Hazlewood, and we detect some positive similarities with Yea-Ming's songs. As it is, we can only assure you that this album demands your ears, and you won't regret giving in.

The players on So, Bird ... are Yea-Ming Chen (vocals/guitar/slide guitar/piano/bass/drums/percussion/synths), Eoin Galvin (lap steel/guitar), Sonia Hayden (drums/percussion), Anna Hillburg (bass/vocals), and Matt Bullimore (guitar/slide guitar/organ). Yea-Ming Chen wrote all the songs except for "Takeda Lullaby", which is a traditional Japanese folk song.

The album is out now via Dandy Boy Records in the US and Lilystars Records in the Philippines. 



Bandcamp for album

Lilystars Records page for album

Various links for the album

Thursday, April 21, 2022

"To Dream" by Say Sue Me

Busan, South Korea's Say Sue Me have an excellent shoegaze sound and sharp pop smarts. Their next album, The Last Thing Left, arrives next month, and to keep our interest high they have released another single. "To Dream" is a shimmering delight with top quality vocals. It also happens to be the only song on the album with Korean lyrics. But have now fear -- the video shows the English translation.

Say Sue Me are Byungkyu Kim (lead guitar), Sumi Choi (vocals/rhythm guitar) Jaeyoung Kim (bass) and Sungwan Lim (Drums). The Last Thing Left, due May 13 via Damnably Records and Beach Town Music.





Various links for "To Dream"

Bandcamp for The Last Thing Left

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Papercuts - Past Life Regression

Papercuts can hurt, but in the capable hands of Jason Quever, there is no reason for fear. Jason is an excellent producer, songwriter, performer, and instrumentalist. But he is best known to us as Papercuts, crafting remarkable soundscapes with melodies that stick to our hearts like our children's art work - precious, memorable, unique, fragile and treasured. His latest album is the recently released Past Life Regression. The ten tracks reflect a wide range of the pop landscape, in some instances reminding the listener of the '60s, in others the '80s or later, with a palette spanning dreampop, shoegaze and psychedelia. But the songs uniformly reflect careful songcraft and impeccable performances, while packing a palpable punch.

Past Life Regression is out now in vinyl, CD and digital formats via Slumberland Records.



Bandcamp for Past Life Regression

Various links for Past Life Regression

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

"Angel" by Trudy and the Romance


How about a truly special slice of big-scope Americana from Liverpool, performed by a men who goe by the name of Trudy and the Romance? We didn't need any persuading to check out "Angel", because we have featured Trudy and the Romance before and absolutely are fans of their sincere, heart-on-his-sleeve delivery and memorable songwriting.

Enjoy the performance below. The song is out now via B3SCI Records.




Various links for single

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Stephen's Shore - Green EP


Stockholm's Stephen's Shore was formed in 2011 and we think that by now they should be known to all guitar pop fans. It is true that they are not the most prolific band, but the music they create more than makes up for a lack of volume. To our ears the five-piece has arrived at the perfect blend of jangle, psychedelic pop and melancholy guitar pop. Perhaps think of it as a blend of Belfast's Sea Pinks, Dunedin's The Bats, and Los Angeles' Allah-Las. We absolutely love all of those bands, and are happy to add Stephen's Shore to the list. You can climb on the fan train yourself right now with their new EP Green.

Stephen's Shore are Viktor Sjodin, Erik J. Undehn, P.A. Blomqvist, Johan Dittmer, and Mattias Bergqvist. Green is out now in digital and vinyl formats via Madrid's Meritorio Records.


Bandcamp for Green

Meritorio Records page for Green

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

"Hearts Underground" by Tallies


"Hearts Underground" is our first exposure to Tallies, but in light of the quality of this song we intend to focus some attention on this Toronto dream pop band. The song is a lovely, jangling delight reminiscent of the Sundays and Cocteau Twins, and some of The Cure's discography as well. It is taken from their upcoming July LP release Patina, which will be out via Bella Union (UK/EU), Kanine Records (US), and Hand Drawn Dracula (Canada).

Tallies are Dylan Frankland (guitar), Sarah Cogan (vocals/guitar), and Cian O'Neill (drums).





Bandcamp for Patina

Various Tallies links

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/talliesband/

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Romero -Turn It On!


What is a Romeo and where might one find it? The answer is Romero is a five-headed music beast comprised of a big dose of punk, an even bigger dose of powerpop and classic rock, and a bit of channeling the love child of Blondie and Joan Jett. All of that is driven by a jaw-dropping vocal performance, twin guitars and a powerful rhythm section delivering your weekend party tunes from Melbourne -- packaged in their just released LP Turn It On! As for where to find them, check the entertainment bill at you local club. If is there, you should be there too. If they aren't, just get the album. Too few bands are making music in this vein these days, and too few of those who do are really good at it. Romero is really good at it. Get this record, turn it on, and turn it up.

Romero are Alanna Oliver, Adam Johnstone, Fergus Sinclair, Justin Tawil, and Dave Johnstone. Turn It On! is out now via Feel It Records and Cool Death.





Bandcamp for Turn It On!

Various links for Turn It On!

Friday, April 8, 2022

"Solid Gold (feat. Amelia Fletcher)" by Red Sleeping Beauty


For us there is no better way to start the weekend early with a slice of pop genius. And today that means treating our ears to "Solid Gold". The song was written and performed by Swedish indie pop masters Red Sleeping Beauty, who invited Amelia Fletcher to provide the vocals. A jangling, upbeat bubble of euphoric sound, it makes us feel young and happy. And given our age and the state of the world, such emotions are a much needed gift. Songs don't always live up to the promise of the title, but "Solid Gold" easily hits the mark.

Red Sleeping Beauty has long provided much appreciated guitar and synth pop, and always manage to touch our pleasure points with just the right amount of pressure. Amelia has thrilled us with Talulah Gosh, Heavenly, Tender Trap, Marine Research, and more recently, The Catenary Wires and Swansea Sound. This collaboration is magic -- grab some for yourself.

Facebook for Red Sleeping Beauty

Twitter for Red Sleeping Beauty

Matinee Recordings page for "Solid Gold"

Thursday, April 7, 2022

fine. - Fine


fine. is quite fine, thanks for asking. A duo of Liam James Marsh of Sheffield, UK, who also performs as Kid Chameleon, and Alice Kat of Boston, fine. has an excellent touch with indie pop, fuzz, jangle and weaves those elements into affecting, melodic creations. This self-titled album contains a generous 26 tracks comprised of their 2021 album I'm Glad It's Over Now (tracks 1-11) and 15 additional tracks curated by Liam from their catalogue of singles and EPs. Fine was available in double CD format, but those beauties are sold out. However, the digital album is available for 'name your price'.

Fine is a collection of top tunes with variety and a plentitude of hooks decorating well-crafted melodies. The duo could be forgiven if the rested on their laurels after this one, but we hope they don't.

Bandcamp for album

Liam's Kid Chameleon Bandcamp

Alice's Bandcamp

Alice's Facebook

Alice's Twitter

The Reds, Pinks & Purples - Life In The Void

In our opinion Glenn Donaldson's additions to his discography as The Reds, Pinks & Purples over the past couple of years is unprecedented. The quality is superb, musically and emotionally, and the volume is remarkable. Now, just a few months after his glorious new album Summer At Land's End (our feature here), he has released a three-song single Life In The Void. Consisting of the title track, which follows the layered, melancholy dreampop template of his recent albums, plus the acoustic "Nothing Between The Lines At All" and the eight-minute instrumental "Evening At Land's End", it seems to us that it is the perfect encore to Summer At Land's End. It is available now as a digital download for 'name your price'. But pay something -- Glenn deserves it. You also could buy one of the cool T-shirts while you are there if you or a fan you know wears the size that is available.



Bandcamp for Life In The Void

Sunday, April 3, 2022

Various Artists - "I Found That Essence Rare" - The Sounds of Beauty


Since earlier today we stated that Sundays are the perfect day for compilations (especially when it rains all day, as it has here), we wanted to bring you more than one. And what a pleasure this one is! "I Found That Essence Rare" - The Sounds of Beauty is a 20-track compilation from Ottawa, Canada's best label, The Beautiful Music. The songs are by artists whose work has appeared on the label, although some of the songs haven't been on a TBM label record previously and a few are alternative versions. So to some extent it is a label sampler, but it really is broader. The purpose, however, is simple: To provide you with exciting music and invite you to seek out more music by these artists regardless of label. And you have no incentive not to do so, because the link at the end of the post takes you to a page with a link to a free download of the album. Yes, that is free, as in $0.00 Can/US/Aus whatever. Free. Happy listening!

Link for album (label page and includes a link for free download)

Various Artists - Under The Bridge


Sundays are for relaxing. And being music fans, relaxing often involves listening to music we like. One of the best ways to do that is to find good compilations so we have top tunes, some healthy variety and a sense of discovery. If you agree with us, we recommend a really wonderful compilation of songs by various artists titled Under The Bridge. A good compilation should have a focus and in this case all of the artists were connected with iconic Sarah Records. The intriguing twist is that this comp doesn't offer songs released via Sarah Records, but rather new songs (most of which have not previously been released) by the Sarah Records artists, either under the name used in the Sarah Records days or with the name of a new project. So what the listener gets is new, well-curated songs by great artists with that old Sarah Records vibe. Folks, that is your Sunday listening sorted. 

Under The Bridge is available now in digital, vinyl and CD formats via Skepwax Records. Also note that the several artists will perform in two, all-day gigs in Bristol, UK on April 23 and London on April 24.

Bandcamp for Under The Bridge


Friday, April 1, 2022

"Far From A Mind" by Hater


One of the top young guitar pop/rock bands in our viewfinder is Malmo, Sweden's Hater. And as more indie music fans become exposed to them, their fan base grows in equal proportion. And deservedly so. Equally adept in the pop and rock channel, their upcoming album Sincere promises to be both a bit darker and feature heavier instrumentation than 2018's Siesta. A good example of their current sound is found on the latest single from the album, "Far From A Mind". The instrumental component of the song is both dense and euphoric, while the lyrical content is tense and the performance infused with a simmering aggression. We find it a compelling combination and an excellent song.

Hater are Caroline Landahl, Mans Leonartsson, Frederick Rundquist, and Rasmus Andersson. Sincere will be released May 6 via Fire Records.



Various links for "Far From A Mind"

Bandcamp for Sincere