More New Jams from Volcano!

Not less than a month ago I brought you the title track from the new record, Pinata, by Volcano!, so I’m happy to offer up another fun track that I know you’re going to enjoy.  It’s still a little bit off-the-beaten-path pop, using tight guitar work as the backbone of the song.  I swear there’s a moment in the song when Ted Leo makes an appearance, but that’s just wishful thinking.  It doesn’t even matter, as there’s a shaky quality here, but also a soaring pop element that is crafted near the end of the track.  If you like your music to keep you entertained and twisting, then listen to this gem of a tune. Pinata is out June 12th on The Leaf Label.


Download:Volcano! – Long Gone [MP3]

Killer Tune from So Many Wizards

This new track popped up on Stereogum yesterday, and I just had to post it.  We’ve heaped praised upon So Many Wizards since back in early 2011, and I’m still supporting, especially as their sound continues to grow.  In February I kind of gave them a nod to old school Shins, and they still have that propensity to dig into the pop realm from a very dense arena; these are the sort of things that always make us happy here at ATH. You can find this song as well as others we’ve raved about on August 14th when the band releases their album, Warm Nothing, via Jaxart Records.


Download:So Many Wizards – Happy Birthday [MP3]

Great New Pop from Saint Motel

The generous dudes over at Saint Motel sent us this track this morning, and I’m so glad they did.  Some groups just have a knack for writing a simple pop tune that is able to rise above standards and find it’s way into constant rotation in your musical life.  The LA quartet is setting up to release their debut, Voyeur, some time this year, and I expect that it’s going to fall somewhere in the vein of bands like Mystery Jets, carefully writing catchy pop numbers I won’t want to share with anyone but myself.  But, just for today, I’d like to share this one with you.


Download:Saint Motel – 1997 [MP3]

Dark Proto-Pop from Holograms

I’m going to tell you right now that we’re going to have some happier tunes on the site today, so I had to kick off the day with something a little bit edgier, you know, just to keep my rep as the resident rock intact. The Swedish group Holograms has just signed with Captured Tracks (one of our faves), and they’ll be releasing the band’s self-titled debut on July 19th.  This has a bit more of a punk rock feeling than a lot of the current bands working on CT, but still combines a bit of that dance element that keeps the whole world happy.  It’s a fine line, but when it’s walked this well, you’re just going to fall in love.


Download:Holograms – Chasing My Mind [MP3]

Cool Japanese Groove from Shintaro Sakamoto

We don’t generally cover a lot of world music, but sometimes you get something that transcends language and culture, connecting us all on a level as pop afficionados.  Shintaro Sakamoto used to play in a psychedelic band, Yura Yura Teikoku, but this new solo career has him venturing forth into new territory.  His newest album, How to Live with a Phantom comes out on July 17th via Other Music Recording Co.  My ears hear elements of tropicalia, just with a slightly more casual approach.  Admittedly I have no idea what he’s saying, but I love this song nonetheless.


Download:Shintaro Sakamoto – In A Phantom Mood [MP3]

New Pop Number from Stevie Jackson

If you read this pages, you’re probably aware of how much I love Belle and Sebastian, so I will always buy into a side-project.  But, Stevie Jackson is making it really easy, as his first single from I Can’t Get No Stevie Jackson is an old school pop gem–the sort you and your parents will both rave about.  He’s releasing the album via B&S’s Banchory Recordings on July 3rd, and you can expect something lush and clever coming your way.  This track just goes to show you that while Stuart Murdoch may man the helm, there’s plenty of great songwriters hiding in the wings of my favorite pop group.


Download:Stevie Jackson – Where Do All the Good Girls Go [MP3]

Nice Jam from MV + EE

When I first got the latest LP from MV & EE, Space Homestead, I wasn’t really sure what to expect.  I had heard a few things, and I had mixed feelings, but over time, I’ve really fallen for the album.  You’re probably going to have the same feeling, at least if you’re in the same shoes. This new single that the band’s had floating around for the last 24 hours really encompasses some of the cinematic quality of the group’s tunes.  There’s hardly audible quality to the music, but I think that’s precisely what draws you in so intimately to the tracks that are present.  Might not be for everyone, but lately it’s been just for me.


Download: MV & EE – Sweet Sure Gone [MP3]

New Heavy Pop Track from Bloody Knives

There’s a lot less blood on the hands of Bloody Knives than one would expect, if you were going by their name and the title of their most recent album Blood.  That being said, it’s sort of irrelevant because the music they’re making is pretty incredible, and you can grab that record from Saint Marie Records.  As a kid who grew up with his fair share of angst, there’s a darkness captured in the song itself, but the combination of shoegaze elements transforms the song itself, giving it a metallic sheen to coat its pop attributes.  Totally enjoying this one.


Download:Bloody Knives – Bleed Out [MP3]

Exciting Pop Punk from English Singles

There are tons of reasons to adore the hard-work of Slumberland Records, but as the band continues to expand their catalogue I’m amazed at the talent they’re bringing on to their team.  English Singles is a Sacramento band, and while you can see similarities to a lot of their labelmates, they’ve got a little more of an off-kilter punk rock sound.  My ears finds this sort of raucous gang vocal approach ultra-endearing, and the more I listen the more that seems to move beyond my nostalgic leanings towards punk rock and more towards simple adoration.  This four song 7″ is out now!


Download:English Singles – Finer Points [MP3]

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