• Top Albums of 2021

    Honestly, I’m pretty over lists at this point. They’re arbitrary and don’t really reflect anything but someone’s tastes, except here where they reflect the tastes of three individuals…because that’s how

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  • Show Pics: Idles @ Stubb’s

    After over 2 years of being a home body and living with anxiety, mixed with a dash of unease, it was an overwhelmingly cathartic experience to get out of the

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  • Fest Pics: ACL 2021 In Review

    We are a little bit clear of ACL 2021’s two weekends. We dealt with the mental gymnastics required to attend both weekends during a pandemic. Proof of a negative test

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  • Rock n’ Recipes: Quivers

    Earlier this year, Quivers released the most excellent Golden Doubt, receiving rave reviews all over the globe…not to mention ATH adoration. So, having followed the band, we reached out to

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Sunken Treasure Records

The boys that brought you Done Waiting now have their own record label called Sunken Treasure Records with a brand new digital download store. So what, you ask? Well, they have the latest release from Miranda Sound as a pay what you want download. Head to their digital store and get your Radiohead like downloading on. They also have Miranda Sound’s last album Western Reserve as a completely free download on their main site. Of course we have for you a song on their newest album that you can check out if you just really can’t decide on parting with that precious $1 you’ve been saving.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/mirandasound_leaveeveryonebehind.mp3]

Download: leaveeveryonebehind.mp3

Gary Clark Jr. @ Antone’s (7/4)

Ring in your fourth at Antone’s on Friday with arguably the best blues musician to come out of Austin in a long time Gary Clark Jr. The show will be getting started at 10pm and only costs you $12. Go to Antone’s website and buy yourself some tickets for this sure to be stellar performance. You can also read more about Gary Clark Jr. & hear more of his songs on his website.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/gary_clark_jr-i_like_the_way_you_love_me.mp3]

Download: ilikethewayyouloveme.mp3

Shot Down

One thing about Stacy is that she will tell you exactly what she thinks even if it isn’t what you want to hear. You gotta respect that kind of honesty. Another thing about Stacy is that she’s kind of a bitch.

New Music From Birdmonster

Birdmonster has some new music available for the first time in a long time. The new song is called “Born to be your Man” off their soon to be released album From The Mountain To The Sea due out 8/5 digitally and 9/2 in stores on the Fader label. It’s quite the catchy little diddy don’t ya think?

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/birdmonster-born-to-be-your-man.mp3]

Download: borntobeyourman.mp3

Penitentiary III w/Jamaa Fanaka @ Alamo

The Original Alamo Draft House downtown never ceases to amaze me. Tonight the greatest movie theater in town will be showing the movie Penitentiary III with writer/director Jamaa Fanaka on hand before and after the movie. Never heard of the film? Read this description from IMDB: “A man is framed for murder and sent to prison. He is beaten and tortured, then forced to fight the prison’s worst killer, a martial-arts fighting midget called Thud.” If that doesn’t sound like a cinematic masterpiece worthy of an Oscar, I don’t know what planet you’re from! The film came out in 1987 so I guess the Academy missed out on voting for this one. Head to Alamo’s website to get tickets for the show starting at 9:45pm.

Earlimart – Hymn and Her

Rating: ★★★½☆

California’s Earlimart has released their 4th studio album, this one coming just a year or so after the release of Mentor Tormentor, which was one of my favorite releases of 2007. I found it an odd choice to release another album so quickly, but I wasn’t let down by this effort.

“Song For,” the opening track, begins with some bouncing percussion, as the music crashes in behind it, you are reminded of similar California acts such as Grandaddy or early Rogue Wave-neither of which is a bad comparison in my book.

Aaron Espinoza has a perfect voice for the melodic sounds of his band, as he gently sings through this album, resembling the softness of his friend Eliott Smith. It’s a comparison I am sure he is sick of at this point, but one that creeps up time and time again in his music.

“Before it Gets Better” introduces the audience to equally strong voice of Ariana Murray, the other mainstay member in the Earlimart lineup. Backed by the softness of a piano, she sings about the realization that before anything gets better, its bound to get worse. Despite the undertones of this song, Ariana allows the listener to empathize with her feelings–a good feat I dare say. Her lead role on “Time For Yourself” makes it another bright spot on the album, which I think has a lot to do with her voice in contrast to Espinoza. At some points I just find her more fitting, but that could be due to her songwriting on such songs.

Unfortunately, I found that there were some spots that missed their mark–for me as a listener. Tracks like “God Love You the Best” or “Cigarettes and Kerosene” found me searching in earnest for the uniqueness that opened the album. Even when the guitars burst in on “Cigarettes and Kerosene” I found it lacking the personality of other songs that are present. Even the title track, “Hymn and Her,” seems like a track that blends into the background of this album.

However, I found a beautiful gem on this record in the song “For the Birds.” It has the gentle quality of Espinoza, backed by the “ooohs” from Murray, all thrown into the mix with a quiet backing of piano and a strumming acoustic guitar. This is the most special moment on this album.

At times, Earlimart waiver from their focus, and it is that tendency to operate on musical tangents that has always hurt their albums. Their strengths come in when they combine Espinoza’s voice with Murray’s, using carefully constructed soundscapes to back the vocals. Lucky for us, there are plenty of those moments on this record.

Listen to the first single off the album “Song For” below:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/01-song-for.mp3]

download: songfor.mp

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