A quick search on the ATH will show only a single post from several years ago about Chicago based band Clearance. All that really means is I don’t know a whole lot about the band and can allow myself to listen to each song with fresh ears. Impressing my critical ear today is this fresh new piece of work called “Haven’t You Got the Time?”. Immediately one can compare this to something straight out of the 60s pop genre if you blended it with a few parts of more recent indie bands like Foreign Born or Fruit Bats. I’m thinking this will begin a whole slew of posts on our website featuring Clearance.
This track appears on new album At Your Leisure due out July 27th via Top Shelf Records.
There’s a new band in Chicago, and it should come as no surprise that the Stolz brothers (Jake and Paul) are involved. The two have previously played in Varsity/Pool Holograph, but their new project Discus is readying its debut EP for Middle Distance Records. They’re pulling off a casual guitar pop vibe here, akin to all that Aussie stuff you know I love; it’s never in a rush to go anywhere, settling for a solid groove and delightful melody. But, the band do add some extra little flourishes that have me fawning over them. For instance, the moments at the 1 minute and 2:22 mark when the guitars dive down and they’re matched by a falling vocal that’s simply intoxicating. Then they close it all out with this rad guitar noodle that takes it all home in the most sublime way possible. The debut EP drops June 29th; they’ll be playing a release show in Chicago at Sleeping Village with our ATX friends Why Bonnie!
Glass Famine is a brand new act out of Chicago, and as Monday’s are great for introductions, why not introduce you all to their new tune. They have a slew of reference points, but they’d probably fit right in with some of the more pop centric outfits on Drag City. I love the subtle backing vocals, and the way the song charms take a casual stroll of cool just around the 2.5 minute mark. Oh, and you’d be wise to check out the wordplay in the lyrics; you’re likely to find a peerless maturity. We’ll give you more from the group as it comes out way!
It seems like it’s been awhile since I’ve really gotten down on some good old rock n’ roll, so let’s offer up this great new jam from Negative Scanner. It hits hard from the start, shouting over those discordant guitar chops. What really struck me on this single is its chorus, where the band flex their musical muscles by letting the instrumentation ride out in hurried fashion behind the vocals; there’s just something about it that gave it this elevated punk feel. Nose Picker is the title of their new LP, and of course, it wouldn’t be great if Trouble In Mind Records weren’t releasing it on July 20th.
The duo of Jason Balla and Alex Otake are probably best known for their work in Chicago’s Ne-Hi, but don’t turn away from their other project, Earring. They just dropped this droning bit of bedroom pop for us to enjoy, perhaps as a reminder of how great their music is while we await a new album. The musical approach of the guitars almost seems to blend shoegaze bits with underlying hints of the new emo vibe; it also includes the faintest jangle. I guess it would fit in the realm of slowcore…though there’s much more melody included in this one. Always nice to hear these guys working on tunes…so until then.
Chicago’s Deeper are just a few weeks away from dropping their debut album, and I’m anticipating heavy rotation around my household. On their latest single, it definitely has that arty post-punk vibe, akin to Omni. But, what the group uses that puts them slightly in their own realm is they brandish sparkling guitar lines; they’re not as sharp as one would hear in a jagged art punk style, giving a natural melody to the band’s sound. Maybe it’s just me, but I can’t get enough of this band. Their self-titled debut will be dropping on May 25th via Fire Talk.
Chicago’s Panda Riot have a pretty heavy sound, but while the song’s construction seems filled to the brim, the pristine vocals knife their way, giving off a softened vibe that gives the song a shimmering quality. At times the electronics pulse and throb, highlighting the internal hooks; they also hit hard in unison with the ringing of the guitars, creating a wall of magic noise. The video, which was shot by Jeffrey Nesker seemingly rides the same vibe of the song, but instead of the heady electronics versus pop, you’ve got images of day versus night…a fitting touch that doesn’t go unnoticed. The group will release their new album Infinity Maps on February 14th, just in time for you to share it with your loved one.
Chicago’s Pool Holograph are preparing for the release of their second LP, Transparent World, and this single should put you on notice that it’s worthy of your listening attention. Interestingly, the band walk a fine line between artful rock and purveyors of pop; the vocals have the ability to come across like soft whispers or slight growls. All the while, the guitar chords ring brightly, shimmering ever so slightly in the distance of the mix…matched by stomping drum rhythms. If you’re looking for a song that’s going to get stuck on your listening rotation, this might just be the one! Look for the new LP to be released next Friday (10/13) via Jurassic Pop Records.
Not too long ago this summer, I shared a new song from rocking Chicago based group Absolutely Not. I’ve since become a follower of the band and have been spinning their music in the car and at home (it’s great for both). Well after having release new album Errors last Friday, the band just sent over this new video for album track “Blood Money”. It’s a lovely bit of heavy, sludgy, rock music. If you haven’t yet, get yourself a copy of Errors now.
It’s Monday people and I think we could all use a little pick me up with a touch of weirdness to get us through the day. My new friends from Chicago, Tinkerbelles, are here to give us just such a song with “Cannibal Tokyo Rainbow”. Be ready for a sludge rock, psych tinged tune that’s heavy as hell and also incredible intricate and tight. If you’re looking for something a little different, hit play now homies.
Tinkerbelles will release Confetti at the Bottom on August 22nd via Brash Tracks (pre-order).