Perfect Dream Pop from Nearr

Rainy days and gloomy songs go hand in hand, so as I sit here in a mile downpour, I’m entranced by the new music coming from Ukraine’s Nearr. It’s the solo-project of Eduar Tokuyev, and the atmospheric wash atop the mix is enough for me, though the extra accents are perfectly fitting. There’s this dense warmth from the steady drum loops, with Eduard’s vocals carefully drifting through; you’ll also here a darkly tuned guitar carefully walking through it all, faintly. This song appears on his first proper LP, History Repeats Itself, which is being released by Jigsaw Records on Friday, January 20th.

Hear a New Track from Pet Milk

Well, it’s only a rough mix, says Pet Milk‘s bandcamp. But dammit if it isn’t a good one. I really love the guitar sound on this version, with the perfect bit of vocals seductively drawing you into the song’s pop realms. You’ll likely pick up on a slight bounce too, building into a slight jam, wrapped up tightly by a return to the pleasant verses the band offers. It’s interesting to hear a band in the early stages of songwriting, as I definitely hear some spots where I’d turn up the noise, but it’s equally as good to hear the bare bone version wondering where the band will go. Time will tell, or so the cliche goes.

ATX Spotlight: Another Adam Torres Gem

Adam Torres certainly is making a name for himself, and we couldn’t be happier for the work he’s bring us all. Last year he offered up Pearls to Swine to critical acclaim, introducing many to his angelic tones. He’s already back with the new I Came to Sing the Song EP, which, as I’m hoping this song illustrates, is here to let you all know the absolute power of voice. Sure, there’s light instrumentation around the strumming (is that a thump or his hand bouncing off the guitar?), though I just want Adam to sing us all to sleep. Your world is about to get a whole lot better…even more so on February 24th when his new EP hits via Fat Possum.

Relaxed Vibes from Mons Vi

This week Mons Vi gives us two new singles, one a redux edition of “Tangerine,” but I’m really stoked on the track “Away.” It’s got this really casual vibe, using a light, beach-leaning guitar chord that swirls about in your speakers. There’s a really nice touch about midway through, when another vocal balances out singer Matthew Hershoff’s voice, even countering it as the moment progresses. It’s playful, yet there’s a purpose to it that sounds confident in the song’s quality. Give a listen to the song, and check out the band for more joyous pop to wile away your day.

Premiere: Service Bell Video from New Berlin

McAllen’s New Berlin are quickly making a name for themselves, with a handful of singles and tapes released over the last few years. They’ve finally gotten Basic Function out into the world, and this video should give those of you unfamiliar with the group the perfect taste of what they’re all about. The video’s a performance video, with the band quickly rocking out in a sterile garage environment, but don’t let that fool you, as they’re brandishing a heavier brand of rock. Bass lines bubble darkly beneath the guitars, backed by a near anthemic vocal, hooking the listener while the band hits hard. Grab the new LP from Super Secret Records right now!

You Can’t Ignore This Tobin Sprout Track

It would be easy to dismiss Tobin Sprout, not on the lack of great songs, but just as the other guy in Robert Pollard’s band. But, this brand new single is pretty brilliant, and has me yearning for a more innocent period of rock n’ roll, void of my meaningless words. It’s built around a plodding piano backbone, though I must say that I think Sprout’s vocals are what ultimately make this song so successful. Lyrically Tobin’s looking back on his own life, but he could be writing about McDonald’s for all I care, as this song’s just stupendous. Look for it on his new album, The Universe and Me, out on January 27th via Burger Records.

Brand New Plaza Tune

Opening with a huge wall of sound before settling into a nice groove immediately helps Plaza capture the ear of listeners. When the vocals enter with a careful touch, there’s a calming effect, though as they move into the chorus, you’ll hear a loud burst accompanied by more forceful vocal blasts. It’s an interesting piece, settling on post-rock that’s enforced by a British pop sensibility; I kind of hear bits of the Twilight Sad in here. Their first single in 2017 finds the band loud and soaring, and we’re all better off for it; you’ll surely hear a whole lot more from these guys as the year goes forward.

ATX Spotlight: More News from Matthew Squires

One of the records that’s high on my anticipation list is the new effort from Austinite Matthew Squires. Late last year he gave us a single that had our ears perked up, and this one ups the ante. His vocal inflections have a touch of Dan Bejar, though the musical has a slightly more upbeat feel to it…which is what we expect from Squires. He’s got these quirky little hooks too, be it from vocal touches or the musical accompaniment tinkering away in the background. Already Dead Tapes will release Tambaleo this Friday, March 20th.

Synth Pop from Ela Minus

In talking about her music and journey , Ela Minus (Gabriela Jimeno) says she’s enjoyed living between two worlds, Colombia and the US. One can only imagine that such a journey leaves you in a contemplative world, which is precisely the note her new single hits. It hits an understated note, soft and airy, floating in the ether, much like I imagine her story. This piece comes from her latest EP, which is part of the musical trilogy she’s put together for listeners. Titled Adapt, this one hits on February 17th via Yebo Music, offering you your own musical journey. Go ahead, take it.

New Bit of Poppy Noise from Bastards of Fate

I think perhaps the greatest thing one can do as a hunter of music is find a band that begs to be pigeonholed, yet you’re unable to really label them…such is my fascination with Bastards of Fate. Watching this video, you get drawn into the opening moments of quirky bedroom pop, but it soon blasts into a noisier, crashing against your eardrums while an undercurrent of pop sensibility keeps the song level. Just as you’re fixed on a sound, the band offers up a haunting bit of doo-wop, as captivating as the earlier moments, and possibly even weirder. The band’s 3rd LP, Suck the Light Out, will be offered up from the very reliable HHBTM Records on February 24th.

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