Listen Now: Slack Capital 2 Stream and Slugbug World Premiere

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the most exciting bands in Austin. All proceeds go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’ve been unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14, which is today!

Song of the day: SLUGBUG — “When The Words”

If you live in Austin and care about music– and by music I mean good music– and by good music I mean weird music– you haaaaaave to know about SLUGBUG. SLUGBUG is the longtime musical project of synth ber-wizard Paul D. Millar, who truly forges his own path with his songs of prime neurotic pop bliss. Like a more German-influenced Ariel Pink, or Devo on a hallucinatory trip, SLUGBUG is built quite efficiently to groove you– think Robocop on speed at a disco– but also, even though (but kind of especially because) Millar is never not straight-faced, to make you laugh. “Bread bowl/ I don’t want to eat that” is a phrase you hear at the beginning of the song, a robotic coo spoken into the spheres. SLUGBUG takes its energy from the punk sensibility of protest, and in this case, he’s protesting meaning itself. “Words come out of your mouth/ Can I tell that they say one thing and really mean the opposite?” And “Words come out of my mouth/ Can you tell that the words were/ Nothing more than filler text.” He seems to be saying, none of us know what we’re talking about. Which is the wisest it gets, probably. –Eric Braden

Stream Slack Capital 2 in its entirety here, and download it, or come pick one up tonight at Barracuda for the Slack Capital 2 official release party. $5, doors at 9 PM. Come have fun and help us support SafePlace!

Premiere of a New Quin Galavis Tune on Slack Capital 2

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: Quin Galavis — “Cold Skin”

This new song by Austin songwriter Quin Galavis is a gorgeous kind of hushed ballad, epic in its scope. Opening with spare, plaintive piano, and the words, “I told them leave/ I’m done wasting hours” Galavis evokes a world of regret, heading toward an ambivalent brand of hope: “Maybe you, maybe you, maybe you/ can dream.” The song evolves toward the end, as strings and dissonant sounds gently pile up, and the words take on the shape of a litany: “The fragile, sickly love/ the ocean of mistrust/ the shaking, fearless love.” There is no irony or humor, yet it doesn’t feel cloying. Galavis’ delivery is earnest and believable; his vulnerability neglects to be self-indulgent, and he never risks succumbing to what I call “cool tough folky nice guy syndrome.” A quietly stunning entry into what is clearly shaping up to be a tremendous era for Austin music. –Eric Braden

Order Slack Capital 2 HERE.

See you tomorrow at Barracuda for the Release Party!

Enjoy AMA Premiere on Slack Capital 2

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: Ama — “Story of Light”

An immediate, delicious, 90’s guitar rock throwback, “Story of Light” is a perfect slice of effortless cool. “If you can see it/ you can feel it,” Blair Robbins sings with insouciant ambivalence, as guitars churn. Later, the beautifully turned-out line “Wake up in the mornin’, and face the day” works both as tiny authentic moment of summoning strength and as a sardonic joke, depending on your mood. The rhythm section of Evan Kaspar on drums and Ray Garza on bass keeps things in the pocket and urgent, and Robbins and Alex Peterson trade in messy-yet-perfectly ornate guitar lines that work as addictive micro-hooks. It’s really just a perfect new gem by one of the top bands in Austin today.–Eric Braden

Order Slack Capital 2 HERE.

See you tomorrow night at Barracuda for the Release Party.

Stream Towards the Sky from Wiretree

It seems like it has been rather slow out there in the musical world…unless of course you’re living here in Austin (but please don’t move here). This week we’ve got a new Xetas LP and the release of Slack Capital 2. But, last week I missed this great release from Wiretree, so I figured I should go back in time and offer you a nice little stream. It’s a collection of folk-inspired indiepop. Album opener “Let Me In” was definitely a standout track, until I kept going back, where I landed on “Dive” as my new favorite. But the fun is that you don’t have to listen to a word I say, just enjoy the great release.

Stream Xetas New LP

I could go on and on about how important Xetas isto the Austin sound. I could tell you just how tragic it would be if people overlook The Tower simply because it has the power to tear through your speakers. All I’m going to say is that you need to lay down whatever you’re doing, turn the stereo up and just let yourself listen to the entirety of this LP. Start to finish, this is one of the most impressive pieces I’ve heard in this city in some time. It comes out via 12XU on Friday, with an in-store appearance at Waterloo Records.

Magia Negra Pop Up on Slack Capital 2

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: Magia Negra — “Human”

Inhabiting a slightly more romantic version of the warped slow-pop of Mac DeMarco, Magia Negra is led by Lolita Carroll, who has a distinctively emotional voice, calm but pleading. “Please forgive me/ I’m not worthy” goes the opening couplet, in which Carroll inhabits a place of sincere regret, of earnest feeling. “Human,” though it moves slowly, has a certain groove to it, and even a little playfulness, thanks to a wobbly guitar and heartbeat drums on the chorus. Music is full of songs about outrage and retribution, but it is perhaps more brave to write a song about admitting one’s failures, and facing them head-on. Carroll says simply she is just “a kind of simple human being”–with all the complexities that that phrase ironically implies– and that admission is something that all of us can aspire to. –Eric Braden

Pre-Order Slack Capital 2 HERE.

Join us Friday at Barracuda for the Release Party!

Thor & Friends Helps Slack Capital 2 and SafePlace

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: Thor & Friends — “Bees”

“Bees” is a work unbetrothed to time– an instrumental hymn, something beyond the language of humans. Like a chamber orchestra you stumble across in the jungle while hallucinating on a deserted island, Thor Harris (of Swans) and his band of collaborators, chiefly Peggy Ghorbani and Sarah Gautier (aka Sarah La Puerta, who appears on this very compilation), make a kind of secular devotional music. For fans of Johnny Greenwood’s film score work for Paul Thomas Anderson– otherworldly, creepy, somehow both minimalistic and epic– the music of Thor & Friends will be something you’ll want to put on repeat. A looping xylophone pattern sort of travels down an eerie back road of sounds, until stabbing strings add a Hitchcock vibe. Even with its playful touch, “Bees” evokes both the frenzied life of the titular insect and the terror of an industrialized, de-natured world.

PreOrder Slack Capital 2 HERE.

Join us at Barracuda on Friday, April 14th for the Release Party.

Jana Horn Sings for Slack Capital 2

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: Jana Horn — “News”

Even in a city of immense musical riches, Jana Horn has the type of voice– inward, haunted, poignantly controlled– that will always stand out. That voice is on rich display in “News,” with no percussion and the sparest of arrangements– just a lightly strummed guitar, a few notes on a piano, and some delicately cooed background vocals (by Jana herself). A meditative examination of existing in a society and the choices we are forced to make within it, “News” is a deeply empathetic, almost alien-eyed view of humanity. “Two sides telling us/our lives are two-sided and we must/ decide which one we’re on,” Horn sings evenly, with little emotion but a kind of numb melancholy. Lyrics like “I’ve been inside the maker’s mouth/Do you want to know the things I found?” evoke the hard-bitten honesty of a person who has traveled the world and is writing back home with a bad story to tell. Like Elliott Smith, Horn’s allergy to over-emoting allows her to imbue each line with what feels like actual feeling. That is a rare gift. In a time of peak anxiety, “News” is a mournful salve. — Eric Braden

PreOrder Slack Capital 2 HERE.

Join us at Barracuda for the Slack Capital Release Party on April 14th.

New John Wesley Coleman on Slack Capital

Slack Capital 2 is a compilation of music by 27 of the greatest bands in Austin. All proceeds from the comp go to SafePlace, which provides support for victims of domestic and sexual violence. We’re unveiling one song per day until the the release party on April 14.

Song of the day: John Wesley Coleman III — “Rodeo Clown”

The enigmatic John Wesley Coleman III sounds like Suicide meets Sea Change-era Beck on this unreleased contribution to Slack Capital 2. “She’s a rodeo clown/ upside down” he murmurs, as if to himself while tripping down a back alley at four in the morning. Shambling, lo-fi, slathered in reverb, and never changing from a simple chord progression, “Rodeo Clown” proves to be surprisingly addictive, and even kind of sweet. That contrast between the twinkling xylophone and creepy whisper background vocals is everything you need to slide into a spiritual K-hole of a weekend. And just like a weekend, “Rodeo Clown” is over before you know it, but lingers foggily in your memory as if it happened a long time ago.

Have a good one y’all, and see you next Friday April 14 at Barracuda for the Slack Capital 2 release party!

Pre-Order Slack Capital 2 HERE.

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