• SXSW 2019 – A Recap

    Yet another SXSW is in the books and it’s time for the ATH crew to reminisce a little and offer some highlight from the week behind us. I think we’ve

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  • SXSW: 6 Bands To Watch

    Well SXSW music is officially here, and as I sit and ponder my existence while at work, I thought it would be fun to share some advice on bands to

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  • RayRay’s Top Songs – 2018

    When it comes to ATH and our areas of expertise, I like to think I’m the go to guy for song lists and bad ass playlists. If you’re doubting me,

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  • Best of Indiepop 2018

    Everyone has their own definition of indiepop; but I tend to ascribe to the original craft where DIY aesthetics and a softer response to punk were all the rage. But,

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  • ATH Top Albums – 2018

      This is our year end list for albums of the year. There’s four of us here, so it’s hard to come to a consensus, but we did our best.

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Til Were Blue Or Destroy @ Mohawk (12/9)

Local Austin act, Till Were Blue or Destroy, are playing a set at The Mohawk on Tuesday evening.  The band will be joined in the night’s events by The Ugly Suit out of Oklahoma.  Things are set to start at 10pm with tickets being sold only at the door.  Preview the show with a new track from the Ugly Suit called “Chicago”.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/the-uglysuit-chicago.mp3]

Download: The Uglysuit – Chicago [MP3]

Dirty on Purpose Call it Quits

Brooklyn band Dirty on Purpose have quietly been one of those great bands that filled my heart with joy.  Their combination of noise and warm pop won me over every single time.  Sadly, the band has decided to call it quits, playing their last show this New Year’s Eve in New York City.  You can download a few of their amazing tracks, as well as their final EP, by visiting RCRDLBL. 

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/01-audience-1.mp3]

Download: Dirty on Purpose – Audience [MP3]

The Theater Fire – Matter and Light

Rating: ★★★½ ·

Theater Fire are one of Texas’ best-kept secrets, nestled in the neighborhoods of Ft. Worth.  They first entered our musical consciousness with their self-titled debut, which attached folk and indie maneuvers to casual Americana.

Their third album, Matter and Light, hits stores nationwide this month, but those in Texas can already get their hand on it by traveling to your favorite independent record store. You will find that this album is a much grander affair, pushing the band in a much more complex direction.

To be fair, it sound strikingly like the final Beulah album, Yoko, only done with a country-tinged personality.  The opening musical number, “It’s All the Same” jumps in with a pounding rhythm backed by horns and piano; it’s a whirling-dervish affair, painted with crystal clear lyrics that come out like one of your best friend’s cousins from Beaumont.  They follow up with “Uncle Wayne,” which goes back to a more straightforward country approach.  It’s guitar matched by percussion and banjo elements, but with a different singer than the first track.  Here, you can definitely understand the David Berman quality to the band.

At this point in the album, the mission of the band is entirely clear, even though you are only two songs in to your listening experience.  The band has continued to push themselves, filling in empty musical space with various forms of percussion or other multi-instrumental elements.  In filling out such empty spaces, it makes the band sound more complete than ever, which is to their benefit.

A particularly interesting moment comes in the middle of the album when the band pays homage to one of our late-great heroes, Elliot Smith. They do a full-on instrumental jam of Elliot’s “Say Yes” that focuses primarily on the songwriter’s ability to create timeless melodies, much as this song does.

They close out the album with “It’s a Secret.”  The brooding quality of this song accompanies the sparse lyrical composition, as a lover or a friend attempts to reveal a secret.  It’s the perfect song for this band, as it plays to all their best traits; using dense vocals that correlate with the large-scale sounds the band have adopted. It’s the perfect ending to a strong album.

FT5: Disappointing Albums Of 2008

In 2008 we saw all kinds of releases across the board. Noise-pop seemed to be a pretty big deal, as did lo-fi production. But when preparing for our year-end lists, we came across the conundrum of deciding the biggest disappointments in 2008. Today’s Friday Top 5 is full of albums that our staff really looked forward to listening to when they were released, but instead fled in fear as to what our ears had just heard. List is after the jump

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Holly Golightly @ Emo’s (12/6)

UK’s prolific underground blues artist, Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs, is playing a show on the inside stage at Emo’s on Saturday.  Tickets for the event are available now for $10 and music should get started around 10pm with opening act Delaney Davidson.  Here’s a song to preview the show called “Black Heart”.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/09-black-heart.mp3]

Download: Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs [MP3]

Built By Snow @ Club Deville (12/5)

If you aren’t making it out to the Whitman show on Friday, Built by Snow are also playing next door at Club Deville.  Built by Snow are a band looking to make it big in 2009 with their new album MEGA due out in January.  Other local acts Hollwood Gossip, Dead Black Hearts, and DJ Gmau will be joining in on the fun.  Club Deville website says the thing is free so you could always stop by in between sets at the Mohawk.  Even if you aren’t making it to the show, you can still enjoy a new track from Built by Snow entitled “All the Weird Kids Know”

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/03-all-the-weird-kids-know.mp3]

Download: Built by Snow – All the Weird Kids Know [MP3]

Suburban Sprawl Holiday Sampler

Even more holiday music to make your vacation time that much more enjoyable!  With 44 songs to download, the Suburban Sprawl record label may win the prize for most expansive holiday sampler.  You can listen to each track on their site or download the whole thing as one big zip file.  Here’s just one of the 44 unique holiday oriented songs called “Meet Me On Christmas Eve” by Sea of Japan.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/04-sea-of-japan-meet-me-on-christmas-eve.mp3]

Download: Sea of Japan – Meet Me On Christmas Eve [MP3]

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