It’s been a few years since Dark Blue dropped their last album Start of the World, and today they’re back with a brand new 7″ for 12XU Records. For nearly six minutes, the band sweep in with this huge wall of guitars crashing upon your ears, providing just a brief moment of respite near the 4.5 minute mark. It’s hard to classify the band, and while you could lump it into any number of post-whatever categories, there’s something freeing about their sound; they manage to sound huge while still seemingly playing from the back of your favorite club. The new 7″ will be released on February 23rd.
As year-end lists get more and more arbitrary, I decided I didn’t really want to play that game with our local Austin scene. Instead, I wanted to celebrate the excellent year Austin had, musically speaking, and encourage you to go grab copies of the things that suit your fancy. As it gets harder and harder for our musicians and labels to survive, lip service, sadly, just doesn’t cut it. So why not pick up something for all those you love…or just wish had better tastes!
You’re all in luck this Friday…tons of shows going on around about town. One of the one’s I’ve got on my radar has OMNI on the bill, who released one of my favorite LPs this year, Deluxe. They’ve got a little bit of proto-punk, spun in their own fashion; I couldn’t find a bad song on the record. But, don’t just let that be reason alone to attend, as two opener’s will also be celebrating the release of their new LPs via 12XU Records: Manhunt and Meet Your Death. This is one of those shows where you show up early, get settled in, then walk out with a handful of great records and fond memories of good old rock n’ roll. See you there! Sample a few tracks below.
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The last time I jammed to Flesh Lights, I felt like the band was offering some gritty punk rock. That grittiness is still apparent in the sounds they’re creating, but on their latest single it sounds like they’ve upped the power pop and hooks. I’m not going to lie; I was floored by this single right off the bat; it’s got everything you need; you can jam it loud, you can rip off your own guitar solo and every lyric is clean enough to sing along to at the top of your lungs. With songs like these in their repertoire, it only makes sense that the end of 2014 and beyond should belong to the group. Look for their latest LP, Free Yourself, in stores on November 4th via 12XU Records.
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If you did what was right last week, you picked up the excellent Put Together LP from Austin’s Jonly Bonly. The band, if you haven’t caught wind, is the project of Jason Smith (formerly of OBN IIIs) and his buddy Stephen Svacina (Sweet Talk). As always, Jason just kills the guitar licks on this tune; they’ve got an old school rock n’ roll feel while drawing some similarities to modern acts such as Parquet Courts. This album’s filled with really sharp guitar playing, energy and a cock-sure attitude; you should head over to 12XU Records and pick it up now!
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Listening to Xetas, I’m reminded that I owe my friend Mark a debt of gratitude. He teaches across the hall, and he’s been championing his friends for some time. I’ve caught them live twice now, and let me tell you, there aren’t a lot of bands playing this style of music that live that bring the energy and the licks like these three. There’s a dichotomy between guitarist D and bassist K, with both playing the role of the foil to the other. I’m further impressed by the recording on this single; it captures the ferocity of the band’s live show, but still sounds huge. Their new 7″ is being released on September 2nd via 12XU Records; you can preorder it HERE.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/01_The_Silence.mp3]