In my continued search to not pigeon-hole my music listening habits, Kwesi Foraes is making it easy. This is the second single we’ve heard from his 27 EP, and the dynamism is his voice is unforgettable. There’s such pain and anger there, captivating you from the get-go; I can feel the strength in his performances bleeding through my speakers as I listen. But, what makes this song so compelling is the juxtaposition with Foraes and the string arrangements working in the background. It’s hard to turn away from a song such as this; look for it when the EP drops on May 27th.
Yumi Zouma are getting quite a bit of buzz in advance of their debut, Yancalla, and I think I’m ready to jump on the bandwagon. This has the sort of playful vibe that I really enjoy, especially in the vocals/lyrics; there’s an innocent simplicity that really allows you to focus on the groove laying in wait. As for that beat, that groove, it’s supremely understated, giving off an ultimate relaxed vibe. I just wanna grab a beer, sit on the porch at night and let this song play on repeat. Look for the LP via Cascine on May 27th.
I think a lot of people often take this whole music thing far too seriously, which is well-and-good, in some instances. But, that being said, sometimes I just wanna have a little fun, which is where Acting Strange fits in. The group has this hook-laden boogie feeling, aided by a touch of garage rock influences; to be honest, it’s a lot like some of the work Hunx and His Punx have completed…another reason I love it! The band are currently working on wrapping up their newest album, so be on the lookout for that in the very near future from In Black Records; I promise to keep you posted.
Boom. Tuesday is made! This song’s totally different than anything else I’ve gotten in days, and I’m totally in love with Private Victories…at least for the next few hours. It’s got that quirky singer-songwriter sensibility many associate with Magnetic Fields, although I think I hear a bit of Devendra Banhart too in the way the vocal notes are drawn out. Sometimes things get circular in the music that comes out, which is why I really love stuff that takes a step outside. Looking for something familiar, yet refreshing? Look for the self-titled debut to come out on May 6th.
Johnny Kills is an up-and-coming UK act that recently caught my attention with their rad new single. It’s an energetic burst of quick punk delivery, coming in at just under two minutes. The vocals are delivered almost as rapidly as the music, keeping the punishing pace right from the start; it definitely feels like the sort of tune that would incite an audience to circle the pit (but do it safe ya’ll). And, as if that wasn’t enough, the band tosses in a couple of synth stabs too, just in case you thought they were going to be a run-of-the-mill band. Turn it up, play it loud, then play it again.
We’ve previously written about Roaring Sun, being somewhat familiar with the group’s members, but now I’m definitely convinced you need to keep an eye out on the young act. Their latest single starts out innocently enough…plodding piano part, ringing guitar and a nice vocal. It would have been well-enough to just leave it hanging there, but the group builds the sound into this brilliant swell of psych-tinged Cali-pop, breaking it down with a nice solid groove to close the track out. They’ve got a show next week over at Barracuda, so if you’re in Austin, you should get in on loving these guys before they break into the big-leagues.
I’ve really dug the stuff I’ve heard from Used Cassettes, having sampled a great deal of their new record Rock n’ Rills. This new single should definitely grab a lot of ears, especially for those who grew up jamming to the Strokes in their bedrooms; it almost sounds like they’re channeling a West Coast Julian Casablancas here. This song holds onto that whole indifferent attitude, even as the song rocks out near its close. Their release is coming up real quick, as MajicStrawberry Sound release it on May 6th.
Man, I’m really stuck on listening to Fascinations Grand Chorus. It reminds me a lot of old school Shannon/Clams, though this one seems to have more of a nostalgic R&B vibe, as opposed to the garage feel. In the end, that leaves it with a supreme pop sensibility; this is the sort of hit you wish they played at your middle school dance…or at least I do. The soloing guitar at the back half of the track is a nice little touch to, before bringing back the chorus. Look for their debut EP on Silent Stereo Records in the coming months.
You know I’ve always got an eye on what’s going on over in Finland, particularly when it comes to the great label, Soliti. This week, news broke that the label was working with a new act, The Holy. I hadn’t heard anything from the group, or even anything about them really, until this video surfaced. It’s a band crafting a sound that I think sounds wholly unique; you’ll electronic elements, lofty vocal range, but also similarities to acts like Arcade Fire or U2 (when they were decent). Plus, they’ve created a captivating video, which, is more than a lot of “videos” that come our way. The single is officially released next week (5.3), but let’s expect a striking album in the future.
Somehow I woke up today, turned my computer on, and suddenly realized that Levitation Festival is going down this weekend. I suppose with all us ATH members being so dang busy over the last month or so, we fell asleep and failed on our pre-coverage. Well today that changes with our first band to watch feature spotlighting veteran Welsh band Super Furry Animals. Follow the jump for some brief personal thoughts and a video or two.