Don’t have too much time to develop an elaborate post about how much I’m really enjoying Little Mazarn‘s debut for Self Sabotage Records, but I feel that it deserves to take us into the weekend several reasons. First, this is probably the last Austin-based LP being released in 2017…and what a great way to cap off our city’s output. Second, the band is celebrating the release with a huge show over at Central Presbyterian with Twain; it’s probably going to be a packed house, so you have no excuse to miss out! Just enjoy the wintry weather, and let this LP take you into the weekend.
As we’ve all noticed, the music news is coming to a slow crawl across your screens. But, some out there are dedicated to keep up the spirit and drop a few more releases. Luckily, one of our favorites, Matinee Recordings, has sprinkled in some delightful indiepop hits to round out the year. We’ve got a few tracks from the Laz Christmas EP, starring Laz from Bubblegum Lemonade fame; the other is a little sample from The Perfect English Weather, giving us a few gems from their English Winter EP. Both releases are now available, so revel that there’s still hits for you to enjoy.
What else could we possibly say about Brooklyn based band Sun Voyager? We’ve been posting their tunes for several years now and the guys continue to hit the mark time after time. With that out of the way, I was pleased to find a new single from the boys in my inbox a few days ago and even more pleased to share “Caves of Steel” with you now. Once again we are treated to some of the heaviest, psych themed rock music I’ve ever heard. It’s like these guys know only one speed, and I dig it.
You’re going to have to face it; there’s really nothing out there like Sunwatchers at the moment. Sure, you had hints of the psychedelic noise with late Mars Volta, but it never delved into the realms of free-form jazz like this bunch does with their keys/sax work. Plus, while other acts of the same ilk seem to rely upon over-indulgence, or jamming, everything about this latest single reeks of purpose. The guitar line slithers about from the get-go, backed by the drums, awaiting the arrival of the keys; eventually the sax joins in and they break all confines of modern pop structures. If you’re willing to take a chance on rocking outside the norm, then be sure to grab II from Trouble In Mind Records on February 2nd.
The guitar vibes immediately set you in the mood when you put on this Lightwash single. It’s important to take that to heart, as we’re being told that the band’s latest Half Hung EP isn’t meant to be scrutinized, only revered as a gem of pop songwriting. It does indeed accomplish its feat, at least on this track, with the vocals hanging on every note, fading out with the last syllable. Personally, I like the emphatic drum rolls giving an extra punch to the turning of words. Go on and jam it, then pick it up from Broken Circles on February 2nd.
I remember when Tapete Records announced the latest 7″ I was climbing all over the Internet trying to find a song to share. But, at that time, nothing was up, so I forgot about it, until “Water Tower” started popping up around these parts last week. Why does this matter? Well, for one, Pete Astor is one of the gifted members of the Loft and the Weather Prophets. Secondly, his album Spilt Milk (2016) was definitely one of my favorites, and I still listen to it on the reg. The reason this song matters is that it will appear on a new record from Pete titled One for the Ghost, which is slated for a release in February. Enjoy it!
Exek are one of the the many Melbourne acts creeping into my playing rotation as of late, offering up something quite different than many of their countryfolk. This single has a minimal structure, with a faint bass line working atop low-key percussive elements. When the vocals enter, they almost seem like fading breaths, whispers carried off into the ether. But, together, the effect is quite powerful, something akin to the work of Liars. The group’s new album, Ahead of Two Thoughts, will be released by W.25th on January 26th.
While I’ve been a fan of JBM, or Jesse Marchant nowadays, this brand new single from his latest LP shows such promise that I’m penciling in repeated listens in 2018. There’s a forlorn tone, both in the emotional pull created by the trickling guitar line and the lyrical content. A slight fuzz builds an added layer about midway through the track, giving just the slightest emphasis before settling right back into the natural joy of the song. Whatever he’s writing, Marchant has charmed us a great deal…leaving us looking forward to Illusion of Love (released on January 26th).
While we anxiously await the release of The Spook School‘s Could It Be Different (coming early next year), they’ve helped us out by sharing a delightful Christmas tune. Interestingly, and perhaps for the holidays, the band have pulled back on some of their distortion pop, offering a shimmering little indiepop vibe on this number. The single is released this Friday, but the band will also be selling a festive calendar featuring candid photos of drummer Niall…always a good gift idea; you can grab that HERE. Hope this can tide you over until the new LP hits!
It should come as no surprise that members of Cross Record and Shearwater will garner a lot of attention, but the depth of song’s like the one below clearly hint at how great this new Loma album is going to be. There’s a wonky, unsettling groove that opens the track, but Emily quickly comes into the picture to calm the storm with her voice. This track was built for her, with layered atmospherics withering in and out of the tune, leaving plenty of negative space for her to carry us with her voice. A different vibe than the first tune, but one we adore over here; look for the self-titled album to hit on February 16th via Sub Pop.