Admittedly, I’m a sucker for a touch of a jazzy/Latin vibe working its way into pop music; it has the feel of a real classy lounge act, and I have no shame in saying I enjoy that. This track from Night Water is definitely of that ilk; it has the intimacy of a crooner working his way through a crowd. But, there are a few moments when the band get to flex their muscles appropriately, giving the song the right amount of punch to keep the track more than interesting. This tune appears on the band’s new effort, Leave No Trace, which drops on January 7th of next year.
As I’ve already gotten close to wrapping up 2019 in my brain, I’m starting to look forward to what’s in store for 2020. High upon that list is the forthcoming LP from Field Music, and today there’s another single to support that premise. It opens with this playful stick work and bobbing bass line, all before the lyrics and the guitar take their places in the track. It reminds me of some of the last Q and Not U LPs, but with a slightly more pop bent…neither of which is a bad thing here. I love how the guitar has this sharpness that contrasts the vocal melody as it rises and falls. This band is on fire; Making a New World is out in January via Memphis Industries.
Clearly, based on the name of our site, we’re always down to represent Austin, and while I feel like releases were down in the city this year, there was tons of great stuff to be devoured. Rather than rank and file our friends; we’re just here to uplift the scene, and maybe remind you of some Texas music that might have (it shouldn’t!) slipped under your radar. Black Pumas got the deserved love, but there’s tons bubbling beneath the surface. I mostly broke it into labels, as they’re the heart and soul of this city. Comes with a fancy playlist.
After working out my indiepop list yesterday, I got some suggestions tossed back at me (which I’m grateful for), but the one that was actually new to me was the Dentals. The Swiss outfit has been bouncing around for some time, and I think those of you who love the softened churning guitar sound of the Lucksmiths will find some joy in this tune. It just has that faint hope on a wisp of wind feel to it, that natural positivity and warmth that makes you come back to feel good about yourself. The band drop their new album Attention on Friday, so fall in love here if you’re so inclined.
As we’re all looking back on the year 2019, I tend to gravitate towards lists with little agenda, other than to shine a light back on the year in the areas I adore. For one, the indiepop scene. Now, there’s always a great big debate about what indie pop is, so for all intents and purposes, I admit that I just don’t care, so the genre’s purists can yell at me later. Now, this may read as a best of, but merely this is the stuff that stuck out in my brain, so if I missed something, I love you and I’m sorry. Honestly, it just gave me a chance to make a fun playlist (2+ hours!) full of hits for all you pop fans.
I’m not totally sure what’s going on with everyone in masks throughout this video, but they all seem to be grooving to this new track from Arch of Love, so I can get behind that. It’s a cool synth pulse moving the song along, cut in the opening moments by this meandering guitar chord, building this heavy pop feel that leaves the floor open for the vocals. It definitely has this nostalgic feel to it, build upon 80s new wave sounds, though you can clearly hear the group trying to make things much brighter and bolder, particularly in the way Chelsea Brennan’s voice hits those higher tones.
Chris from Jigsaw Records has been super kind to us over the years, and super kind to you all with his wonderful label. I reached out and asked for a list for 2019, no rules, no nothing…so he came back with his Best Selling Jigsaw releases…most of these were making waves at his brand new brick and mortar record shop in Portland, My Vinyl Underground.
I’m glad the musical world hasn’t stopped just because year end listing is in full swing, as we wouldn’t have been gifted this glorious pop number from the Just Joans. For me, this song’s all about the vocal constructs that give the tune success. Don’t get me wrong, the track has the right musical punch where necessary, but it’s definitely the delivery of the lyrics. They definitely have that sort of disaffected youth or perhaps that sort of deadpan melancholy, but the “wee guys” choral backing track really makes the song something more than memorable. Just imagine if Arab Strap wanted to be a proper rock band. The Private Memoirs and Confessions of the Just Joans will be out on January 10th via Fika Recordings.
The indiepop scene in Austin has its ebbs and flows, but over the last few years, Fanclub have been keeping it going, pretty much on their own. Today they share their newest tune, another propulsive guitar pop number with Leslie’s voice offering that textured softness pop fans fawn over. As always, they employ a fair amount of synth samples in their work, which add that energetic pulse, building in layers sound to avoid the banal pitfalls of the genre. As always, they’ve nailed the perfect balance in this tune, and let’s hope that another single and news of an LP follow in the very near future.
There’s a whole lot of alliteration in that headline, but there’s a whole lot of reasons to listen to Chicago’s The Hazy Seas too. For one, you can’t tell me that as soon as those guitars start dancing their way into the scene that you’re not just tapping your toes incessantly. The rhythmic pulse adds extra bounce too, giving this song great energy to push things forward. Interestingly, there’s nice juxtaposition with the vocals, coated and cloudy, kind of this dark solemnity, which matches up with the song’s lyrics taking on the subject of making tough decisions and feeling lost while others look on at your life. The group will release their debut LP in early January of next year, so keep your eyes peeled.