Show Pics: Tycho @ Stubb’s (5/12)

Last Friday was an insanely busy night in Austin. While Nathan camped out with Team ATH bands over at Hotel Vegas, I was taking in a full set from Tycho at Stubb’s.

It has been a big year for Scott Hansen. He started the Tycho project as an aside to his graphic design (check it out at ISO50.com). The live shows have featured projections of his art as an element of the performance. To the credit of that graphic design, I sometimes “see” the design language when spacing out listening to the records. The latest album, Epoch, was Grammy-nominated for Best Dance/Electronic Album. That had to be a rad feeling, and a bit odd given how much of the record is not electronic or dance. The Austin show was the end of the tour, so we were treated with an extended set of lesser played songs after an intermission following the normal show.

Anyway, you can relive the night with photos of Tycho and openers Khruangbin along with some more words and even get a few bonus shots of our friends Tres Oui at Beerland. Deal?

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Dreamy Perfection From Hazel English

…and it is a gem. I listened to it twice.

According to the intarwebs, this is a bonus track to a 2xEP purchase featuring previously released materials and some new things. Hazel English straddles a line between too much and not enough in every little bit of the song. You want the song to be longer, the hook to stick around, echoes linger and layers peel back, but without letting go to move on and open space for the synth flourishes and guitar sweeps and all that space between, you wouldn’t be nearly as hooked at one listen. Brilliant stuff.

Order the double EP here and those of you across the pond need to see if she is playing in your town.

Have A Nice Weekend

Jay-Z is playing ACL.

LCD Soundsystem has released two songs into the digital wild.

Resume your regularly scheduled programming.

Here is a the latest track from Beacon, realized I hadn’t shared it yet. According to a bookface post, it is a hint of what to expect from the new record pending on Ghostly. When artists are given the ultimate freedom of the digitally (or analog in the case of classic synths) crafted soundscape, I am disappointed how often that soundscape can be squandered or derivative. The creation of the tones and waves, how they transition and fall into the feeling of the track, maybe a half beat early or late, pitch-shifted or hot cut, will often decide whether or not I will spend two seconds or all day listening to a track. The foundation and eventual fall of the primary groove here, the transition between notes and octaves, the way it disapperas as the track progresses and leaves behind the refrain closing the song, but is still present in melody is why I spent more than two seconds listening.

…and what I say here stands for the bangers and the ambients, dance pop and deep house, you gotta do something with it.

Catching Up With The Foreign Resort

One of my highlights from SxSW in 2016 was seeing The Foreign Resort. The trio from Copenhagen played to a mostly empty room in a venue with a terrible location on St Patrick’s Day. Didn’t matter, they sounded great and played my hits. These guys are an aggressive collision of synth pop and post punk, new wave, dark wave and no wave, and I love it.

“She Is Lost” is the first single from the upcoming LP. No info on the new record other than #soon. If you are North of the Border, eh, go check them out during their Canadian tour starting tomorrow in Toronto.

A Night Out: Small Black and Terry Malts

Hey, all. Catching up on sharing some show photos. Last Friday was an insanely busy night with bands like Real Estate, Small Black and Terry Malts headlining around The Red River Cultural District. It meant meeting different groups of friends and seeing more bands in one night that some people see all year. Don’t you feel sorry for them?

Bands in order of appearance – Nite, Talkies, Small Black, Business of Dreams, Hidden Ritual, Terry Malts.

So click through for some notes about dinner, drinks, bands and coughing fits with a nice big gallery.

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Have A Nice Weekend

I was randomly talking to a coworker about the history of electronic music, bringing my days of chasing drum and bass imports at Technophilia and later Waterloo and Alien Records. Since you are a music fan, you should watch this mini-documentary on the Amen Break, a sample pulled by many hip hop and rap artists, but also the source of the core building blocks of the entire D&B genre and subsequent subsets still used heavily for all things beat related. What to listen to after that? LTJ Bukem; find the Earth Vol. 1 compilation. One of my personal faves as single artist/album is Spring Heel Jack‘s 68 Million Shades.

Goldie always hit the periphery of my collection; I always favored his pure tracks, non-collab/no vocal. Just so happens, he released one such track today. This is current yet classic, simultaneously soothing and abrasive, aggressive and focused. Leave a comment.

Building Post Punk From Ultrviolence

Ultrviolence is described as a “Canadian post-punk collective that moves the listener relentlessly through waves of peaks and valleys drawing you in with its lyrical truth.” Copying and pasting press blurbs is rarely a method I like to use, but in this case it is probably easier than breaking out the thesaurus and looking up post punk.

The reality is that I have been locked in on the post punk thing over the last few months (read that as forever) and I am always happy to hear new stuff to share. “Guillotine” is straight forward, the bass line, guitar plucks and synth flourishes ride through the first verse setting up the gradual build and sustain before release. It is lead track on the EP Forty Knives which will land on Northern Light on May 12th.

Night Drive Shares A Video

I was talking with Rodney from Night Drive at the Bryan Ferry show. Seems the record coming out on Roll Call Records is just about set for release and that means promo time. Among the plans, a record release June 16th at Cheer Up. We will be there. How about a video, too?

If you haven’t gotten behind this jam you, I suggest you do. The vid is directed by Yoshi Sodeoka. Psyched out, kinda. Let’s dance.

Simian Ghost Share A Clever Video

One of the lovely things I saw during SxSW was the very charming set by Simian Ghost. The Swedes are not huge fans of the current political climate in these United States. Case in point, they would randomly change a lyric in a song to “Impeach the Clown” during their sets at SxSW.

Aside from having a clever video, “Stop Moving” is a sparkling example of why Swedish pop sensibilities need to permeate all corners of the globe. Their sound is more organic these days, in fact this track is downright disco in nature, as they have picked up the guitars in favor of the pure synths that dominated earlier recordings. There is a new record coming soon via Heist or Hit, but until then…

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