We’ve known Abram Shook for a really long time, since the beginning of this little site, actually. We’ve watched him grow, worked with he and his project Feverbones to release their LP, and now we seeing him grow again. The last few months he’s teased us with images that border on space-alien or maybe even disco; we knew something was coming, and now we finally get to hear it! In the first 40 seconds he offers up this sort of tinkering pop ambiance, but just after that, the song really drops in and there’s a funkier element to what Shook is working with in the song. That funk has always existed, especially if you’ve been fortunate enough to watch him play live, but it’s way out in the open here, then smoothed and polished for the chorus. We hear he might have a new album on the horizon, but for now, we just get this single!
Since their fabulous return, Red Sleeping Beauty have been working pretty hard on crafting delightful pop numbers, and today they release Stockholm, their new LP! At first this tune caught me off guard; it has a much deeper electronic pulse than the majority of the band’s work of late; it’s heavier and dark. But, the group are able to play upon that, working with melody that will never make you think of this track as a dark club banger. I mean, just listen to the chorus and delivery of the lines “New York City girls, New York City boys;” it’s the perfect balance of club hit and bedroom pop. I love this tune; find the album over at Matinee Recordings, out today!
Fridays are for discovery, for finding something new to love…and that’s where I get to meet the Bops. They’re a fairly new duo out of LA who’ve just dropped Everybody Needs to Lay Down, a delighting new EP. They draw from acts like Alvvays and Hand Habits, and I can hear a bit of both in Sydney’s vocal performance on the track below. I like how the tune feels instantly intimate, though there’s some meandering guitar work in the latter half that illustrates an other worldly brightness to warm your day. It’s a feel good Friday tune that will hopefully get you out there to enjoy some of their fine EP today.
After sharing the humorous sincerity of “But I’m a Top,” the Ballet return today with the other side of the coin, pulling back on the humor just a wee bit. The story here seems to be the anxiety of worrying about whether you love someone too much, and that feeling that things might not be reciprocated. The hooks are still in there, starring these light little keyboard notes maneuvering in and out behind that dancing guitar line. Sure Greg Goldberg has stylistic similarities to Stephin Merritt, but there’s this softness to his voice, a fragility that makes him feel just a touch more open and approachable. This is the second single from Matchy Matchy, out on May 17th via Fika Recordings.
If you were to look over the last year, you’d realize how much we love Austin outfit Fanclub. They’ve got an energetic take on dream pop, letting jangling guitar lines meet up with samples and precision drum work, all the while Leslie lets her heavenly voice float on top. They just released their All the Same EP, but they’re back already with a brand new tune for your ears, and a video to boot! It’s as catchy as anything they’ve put out, with an old school style wash to the video giving some Flashback Friday vibes. Not sure if this means there’s a new EP on the horizon, but fingers crossed!
Matt Kivel‘s story took him through Austin for a time, and according to him, he was able to create ‘something very calm and still.’ Listening through to “Two Braids,” you can sort of grasp that sentiment in the song itself; at times, it almost feels like two separate songs carefully grafted onto one another. There’s this ambient piece, composed of light beats and little musical flourishes bubbling up now and then; this might be the most audible of the two pieces. Sitting just behind that, calmly, is Kivel himself, quietly letting his voice float notes out, though careful not to walk too far into the other piece. It’s a stunning number, one fitting the visual accompaniment. If you like it, keep an eye out for Last Night in America on May 10th via Cascine.
He’s got an Austin date at Cactus Cafe May 17th with Alexalone and some band named Daphne Tunes.
Over the fast few years, Corasandel have quietly crafted elegant pop music of the dreamier variety, and in a few weeks, they’ll finally release their debut EP, All The Hours Are One. I’m delighted to share this new single with you, as it’s a fitting entry point to the band’s sound. The first minute and a half is filled with light vocals and these delicate guitar notes that sort of wallow in the air; the band don’t hold back forever, however, providing you with a little bit of an emphatic catharsis just after that, where you can ride their craft into pop bombast. They pull that back too, quietly letting you ride in the backseat of the song as we drive off into the sunset, guitar notes dancing and vocals fading into the past. It’s a glorious track, and one I hope you give some time; All The Hours Are One will be out on April 26th.
Cornwall’s LIPS are about to be the next great act on the storied Sunday Records; tomorrow they’ll drop their debut EP…and get ready for everyone to swoon. In starting out the EP, the drop a bold indiepop challenge in “Apartment;” it’s fueled by these dancing dreamy guitar jangles and feathery vocals from Rachel Anstis. Antis is the clear winner here, though she steps aside to let the band do their best to get you to kick up your shoes. Skip down a song and you’ll find “Walls” toying with the fuzzier “gaze” side of the realm. Still, Anstis steals the show, moving between angelic notes and calming cool, running through the song like its her own vocal playground. “Sunken” turns around to show you just how far the outfit can take their pop sensibility, shaking about between sharp angular cuts and hazy notes that tear through your speaker. I’m putting my money down now that this is one of the Top 5 EPs of the year!
Feel like I haven’t unearthed any Spanish pop music of late, that’s until Sonic Cathedral/Elefant sent this Linda Guilala (band not person) track my way. The band are fresh off the release of 2018’s Psiconautica, so they’ve decided to carry on in 2019 with a slew of really powerful singles. Here we find them delving into their psychedelic tendencies, both in sound and visuals; there’s a heavy ride of fuzz that courses through the vein of this song, but don’t let it fool you, as the pop underbelly is still omnipresent for the duration. The single is out Friday in a limited 7″ format, so get into that!
I feel like I could listen to Red Channel every day. The LA act just shared another tune from the redone and soon to be reissued Crazy Diamonds EP (the EP originally came out in 2018), and dammit if it’s not a jam and a half. It’s got this sure-fire punk vibe, especially with the way some of the vocals are delivered, but beneath it, there’s this soulful nod to R&B/doo-wop that gives the track an undeniable catchiness. Plus, the rhythm section is spot-on throughout the entirety of the track, particularly the bass work bumping in and out during the verses. This song is fire! The whole EP drops on April 19th via Upset the Rhythm.