06/26 Kadane Brothers Show + Interview

The Kadane Brothers delivered an intimate two guitar and no frills set at Emo’s Austin on Thursday night. Austin was the first show in a series of quick North American tour dates for Matt & Bubba Kadane without their backing band The New Year. The brothers showcased a few new songs off their forthcoming self titled release The New Year due out in September with their band of the same name. Each song of the set featured one of the two brothers singing lead with the other brother singing harmonies to back up. Read more

No Age @ Emos Tuesday (7/1)

No Age will be showing up at the Emos Austin indoor stage this Tuesday (7/1) with supporting act Abe Vigoda in tow. You can purchase tickets for the low low price of $8 on the ticketweb website. Opening act The Strange Boys are set to start at 10pm so No Age will probably be getting a fairly late start for those of you with jobs. Read more about No Age or hear a song off their critically acclaimed new album Nouns entitled “Eraser”:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/no-age-eraser.mp3]

Download: eraser.mp3

Alkaline Trio – Agony and Irony

Rating: ★★★★☆

For those expecting Alkaline Trio to come up with an entirely new formula for this album–their sixth full length–it may come as a disappointment, although it shouldn’t, that the band sticks close to their guns. They’ve been honing their skills at the pop-punk game for so long, that it might do more damage to fans if they strayed in a new direction.

Of course this album has the classic Alkaline lyrical stylings, filled with allusions to the darker side of things, which has always been Matt Skiba’s forte. An example of this lies in the song “Into the Night,” where Skiba sings “The carrion has been forgotten/Left for dead in the sun rotting.” It’s also visible with track titles such as “Calling All Skeletons” or “In Vein.” There is a real personal vibe in the lyrics as well, but I’ll let you listen to those on your own time.

There are some slip ups on the album such as the redundant lyrics in “Do You Wanna Know,” which is forgivable because of the quality of the music. Also, “Love Love Kiss Kiss” just doesn’t pack the same punch that the rest of the album offers listeners–not to mention how ridiculous the chorus is on this song.

However, there are some phenomenal songs here, such as “Over and Out,” which is probably one of the best songs I think that they’ve written in recent years– driven during the verses by some solid bass work. “Ruin It” is just another song that exemplifies everything that Alkaline Trio has been creating since their jump to the majors–and they throw in a nice vocal effect near the end to boot.

At first, I was weary of the really clean production on here–as I love the grit of that dirty guitar sound–but it really works to the benefit of the band here. Skiba’s melodies are well-suited by the newer sound the band has taken on. It makes the band sound sound really close to being at their absolute best. All good things.

Like I said, there isn’t anything new here–excluding the fact that there are new songs, of course–yet this is a solid effort from a well-seasoned band that has been doing it longer and better than most. Not quite the perfect album, but pretty close.

Below is a song called “Help Me” off the new album:

Download: helpme.mp3

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/alkaline-trio-help-me.mp3]

F-Yeah Tour at Mohawk (6/27)

The F-Yeah tour will be bringing the traveling road show to Mohawk on Friday evening. The list of acts include Matt & Kim, Deathset, Brother Reade, Keith Morris, Team Robespierre & many more. Tickets for the show are only $8 and you can buy them ahora on the front gate tickets website. For more information about the show, check out the brand spankin’ new Transmission Entertainment website. You can also preview the show with a song by Matt & Kim entitled “Yea Yeah”. Get yo dancin’ shoes ready! Also, according to their myspace page, the Crystal Antlers will be doing an after party at the Lamar Bridge around 2 am after the show at Mohawk. I don’t know much about it, but I’m sure it will be a good time.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/matt-and-kim-yeayeah.mp3]

Download: yeayeah.mp3

New Kings of Leon Album Details

Kings of Leon have set a release date and an album title for their newest record. The album is called Only by the Night and is set to be released on the RCA record label Sep. 23rd. You can read more about the album on NME website or head to Kings of Leon’s website for more information/tour dates. This gives me a good excuse to post one of my favorite songs of 2007 “My Party” off the incredible & personal top 5 album of 2007 Because of the Times. I’m praying these guys can recreate this sound and continue to deliver rock n roll at its finest.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/06-my-party.mp3]

Download: Kings of Leon – My Party [MP3]

Okford Collapse Free Show

Sub Pop label friends Oxford Collapse will be playing at Mohawk tonight for free! That’s right, it cost you nothing, zip, nada, seriously nothing. The show will be getting started at 8 pm. It can’t really sell out but it can fill up pretty quick so you should get there early before the fire marshal says no more people inside. Read more about Oxford Collapse on their website or hear a song off their 2006 album Remember the Night Parties called “Please Visit Your National Parks”:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/oxfordcallapse.mp3]

Download: pleasevisityournationalparks.mp3

Hercules and Love Affair – Hercules and Love Affair

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Anotony Hegarty put out one of my favorite albums of the last five years, and when I heard of his involvement in this project I was extremely excited. His voice–albeit one needing adjustment–is probably one of the more emotion evoking voices I have listened to in the these days. Sure, they are stripping him of his piano, but the possibilities of a solid album were definitely there.

The first track “Time Will” definitely maintains the spirit of an Antony record. His strong vocals come through in full force, met in the background by carefully constructed dance beats. It’s a fresh approach that definitely earned some interest from the get go. It’s hard not to listen to the the opening track without high expectations.

Then you come to the second track, “Hercules Theme.” Throbbing bass lines and other various beats have you bobbing your head as soon as this song comes into your ears. The use of horns–live or sampled–creates a blistering dance song that will have to be a staple at all your summer dance fiestas. Just ignore the sexual moans playing quietly in the background, and you will be well on your way to enjoying this album.

The next two tracks hit you just as hard. Encouraging you to dance along with all your friends in your favorite living space. This all comes to a culmination by the fifth and best track, “Blind.” Antony Hegarty sings throughout, carrying you up and down with his voice, while the beats have you tapping your feet ferociously–if your legs and arms don’t follow, go see a doctor. This is an exceptional dance track, and there is nothing else you can say. It all, however, stops here.

The rest of the album drags on like a really poor dance record. It’s hard to find the reason for the hype when you listen to the rest of the album. The beats become extremely repetitive, and there isn’t anything that garners your attention, as the album slowly fades into the background of your mind. The pumping beats that accompanied the first five tracks go off in the way of a really bad 80s porno soundtrack. The pace gone, and the creativity lacking, the album turns into something hardly listenable, unless of course you are into porno soundtracks.

Another flaw that I find with this album is that they still use Hegarty’s lyrics. His writing is so intimate and dark that it is hard to find it juxtaposed with disco dance beats. It all seems wholly out of place with the rest of the music. Sure, it’s great to hear Antony back again, but without the personality he carries with his piano, you find him coming off a little bit hollow; this is not what I looked forward to when I heard of this union.

If you need some dance tracks for your upcoming July 4th party, then I suggest you go out there and buy a few of these songs to keep your friends feet moving, but if you are looking for an intimate evening with Antony then you will find yourself disappointed, and possibly disillusioned with his tastes. So much for the hype.

Have yourself a go at “Hercules Theme” from the new album:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/02-hercules-theme.mp3]

Download: herculestheme.mp3

Forest Fire Album Download

You can download the entire new album from Forest Fire entitled Survival from the Catbird Records website entirely for free. You can also tip the band if you want or get a hard copy of the album for muy cheap. Preview the album before you spend all that time downloading it by giving a listen to “Fortune Teller” on our website:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/02-fortune-teller.mp3]

Download: Forest Fire – Fortune Teller [MP3]

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