Just before the year closed, Western Homes released a great self-titled EP (you can buy it right HERE), and now there’s a brand new video to go with the track “Mind the Gap.” The track itself is a pretty bare bones affair, mostly consisting of vocals and guitar work, but it’s the unique quality of the vocals that always attracts me…it’s part guttural punk rock and part balladeer. In the video we find Westy in a contemplative mode, set against various local backdrops and bedroom shots. It’s a great way to get into Western Homes, and a great way to get into the catalog of Super Secret Records…who are having a showcase tonight at Beerland with Quin Galavis, New Berlin, Nick Allison and, of course, Western Homes!
Clearly Holodeck had a banner year last year with all they deserved hype around Survive, but they’ve been fostering incredible electronic music here in Austin for some time, much like producer VVV. Throughout the last few years he’s released several EPs and tracks specializing in his thought provoking intelligent dance music, and Why El Paso Sky is a collection of b-sides and rarities in hopes your ears will pay closer attention as he preps more tunes for you in 2017. Settle into the cold dreary morning that is today with this tune, and grab it from Holodeck on March 10th.
In covering music in Austin, we’re bound to miss someone falling through the cracks, and unfortunately it’s been Ty Richards…until now. We’re really excited to share the first single from his forthcoming album, Zillion. Ty writes, records and mixes his record all on his own terms, often writing the songs before going back to fill in the lyrical content, as he did on this new number, where he ended up writing an anthem for the nice guys out there. Musically, there’s a groove within the song that might pay lineage to the finer moments of Spoon’s pop sensibility, providing a bubbling bounce…although it’s spun in a broader encapsulation of pop, capturing elements of psychedelia as well. Look for his new LP everywhere on February 3rd!
Austin’s Free Week is all about discovery, and I didn’t even have to leave the house to discover this great new dream pop band, Blushing. The group are about to release their Tether EP on January 13th, and I dig what I hear in these songs. You’ll hear the guitars shimmering in the best way, but perhaps what I love the most is how the songs have some length, which allows you to fully digest the sound from the band…no two minute tracks here! The longest track on the EP is titled “Mess,” and I’m putting it below to illustrate the power the aesthetic beauty they’ve captured on their EP. Go ahead, give it a listen.
In what’s been an incredible year for Austin’s music scene, Hunter Jones look to add their name to that list right before the year draws to a close. The band employ those slightly jangly, slightly dreamy tones throughout the entirety of Jordan Year. There’s a calming quality working here, always present, even when they pick up the pace on my favorite track, “Fast Song.” I’m also partial to “Maybe,” but those are just my picks for standout tracks. You can grab the new mini-album via bandcamp, or pick it up in cassette format via Outer Limit Records.
As we push forward towards 2017, we’re all thinking of highly anticipated releases. One on my personal list, and that of most in-the-know Austinites, is John Wesley Coleman‘s Microwave Dreams. As he’s written more and more, he’s elevated his sound and songwriting far above what was possibly unfairly deemed as “trashcan troubadour.” He’s the songwriter you can take to your square friends, and thrill your hip friends at the same time. Read more
A day after we dropped our ATX Christmas Guide, featuring tons of local talent, we’ve got another talented group offering up their new single, Ama. The band’s long been known to us, but the balance of this track exemplifies the group’s talents; they rock hard amidst the cool verses on display from vocalist Blair Robbins. You offer me impressive guitar work and hook-laden vocals and I’m in, which is why I’ll throw down behind this act. No word on a release, but you can help them out by throwing a buck or two their way over on their Bandcamp.
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!
Earlier this week we caught wind that local Austin act Hundred Visions would be releasing some brand new tunes; I was salivating…and dare I say this is better than I expected. At first, the band seemingly trudges through familiar territory bending guitars nice with vocals drawn out atop the mix. But, hold on because they refuse to settle for the same old story, blasting off into a riotous mix of punk that jumps right into your ears! They go back and forth throughout, jolting you back and forth the whole way. They’ve got a new tape titled Brutal Pueblo coming out next week via Burger Records.
In a city with an abundance of music, even during low touring seasons, you can easily get overwhelmed by shows. But, tonight at Beerland you’re getting a special treat: Jeffrey Lewis. He’s a musician at the moment, but for the past twenty years he’s also worked as an incredible comic artist (the book version not the stand up). You can check out his work and his site HERE, but show up tonight at 9 and get ready for something incredible. His last album, Manhattan, still plays steadily in my rotation, so check out the tune below. Also, you’ll get to hear Jake Gumb and Dead Sally, so technically you’re going to win all day long…and you know how America likes winning.