We’ve been covering Michael Beach for several years now, whether it be his solo work or his role in ATH faves Thigh Master, he’s always given us just the right rock dosage. Now we’ve got news from overseas that he’s going to be working with Goner Records for his new LP, Dream Violence (and Poision City in Australia). Honestly, my favorite thing are the two sides of Michael’s voice here. He starts off with this calming croon, something that seems to settle the rambunctious guitar work that opens the tune. But, just as soon as you’ve adjusted, guitars start to ring heavier and Beach takes on this primal howl that pushes everything to the very edge. Flare and discord marry and scuttle about in the midst of it all, creating this maniacal rocker burdened by its desire for pop sensibility. You can’t go wrong turning this one up real loud! The LP is out March 19th.
Optic Sink is the new project from Natalie Hoffman (NOTS) and Ben Bauermeister (Magic Kids); they’ve just announced their debut felt-titled album via Goner Records. While the presser hints at a wide range of sounds, our first listen is this pulsing electronic number, matched up with this visual enhancer. For me, the song sort of strips the humanity from Hoffman, offering an almost sterile machine-like vision, devoid of emotions in its presentation. Perhaps its a last gasp, a final attempt to hold onto all that we hold dear as we struggle with loss on so many levels. Whatever it may be, it’s definitely cool to my ears. The LP will be released on October 2nd.
Had some mellow tunes on the playlist for today, so felt like we need something fresh and loud to knock down the doors a little, which works since Archaeas just announced their debut LP today. The band began as the project of Violet Archaea while coming to terms as a trans artists living Kentucky, though its since been fleshed out to a trio. Thematically, the album is a nod to Wild Zero, where Guitar Wolf help a trans heroine save Earth, but it also pulls into play the “anxiety and pressure of living in today’s world.” You can feel that in the song, you can feel the angst, the push back against the shittiness of everything around us, which only serves to drive the song home. Their self titled debut drops on September 18th via Goner Records.
Sometimes your allegiance to a label opens up doors you hadn’t expected, such as my willingness to spend time with anything Goner Records releases…like Bloodshot Bill. The songwriter brings something along the lines of a more updated version of Johnny Cash…maybe we can just brand it as punkabilly…as it certainly seems like it shares that lineage. Whatever be the case, I’ve just really enjoyed this song…been playing it all morning on and off; it’s like a palate cleanser of sorts, something refreshing when the rest of the world sounds the same. The new LP, Get Loose or Get Lost, will be out later this year via Goner.
You’d think a band comprised of members of Ex Cult and NOTS (formerly) would have some sort of monstrous presence in a new project. But, that’s exactly why I love Aquarian Blood, and in fact, why I’ve always loved rock n’ roll. This isn’t a banger, or a ripper; it’s a stripped down ballad that’s about as intimate as they come. The vocals are wholly solemn, almost weary from a live well-lived. I guess for me, the band just hit that sweet spot of not-quite folk; you can hear the musical lineage on both sides of the coin, particularly with the great arrangements fleshing out the tune. This tune will be on A Love That Leads to War, the new LP out October 11th via Goner Records.
Plus! If you’re in Austin, you can catch the band with Thigh Master at Hotel Vegas tonight!
As of right now, Thigh Master are the perfect 2 for 2 with their singles; they won with “Mould Lines” and “Entity” might be even better. I love the frantic attitude that opens this tune with its devil-may-care faux jangle; it’s got this natural bravado that seems wholly unintentional. But, for me, the pop sucker, it’s that slight turn starting with “I’m looking for an entity” in the chorus that makes my pop ears stick right up in the air! It’s hard to sound casual and cool with this buoyant bounce just riding right on through until the end. Now For Example will be out worldwide on September 27th via Goner Records!
Having already written about one Brisbane act today, it only seems appropriate to follow it up with another that I’m quite fond of, Thigh Master. Matthew Ford and his band have things locked down tight on this one, fueled by a bounding rhythm section and this discordant guitar cutting through like a knife. Still, what’s always charmed me about this outfit is that no matter how rambunctious and out of control they seem, they always carry this pop sensibility just below the surface, lurking and waiting to burst your eardrums with joy. This track is no different! You’ll find it on the band’s Now for Example, slated for release by Goner Records on September 27th, with a big old US tour in the early Fall!
Slimming the band down is bound to change the way a group like NOTSsounds, and I think for the first 20 seconds or so, you can feel a change in the direction; there’s an electronic pulse sort of quivering in the opening moments. But, once that’s on, the vocals begin to straddle the rhythm section, delivered in such a fashion as to sort of intoxicate the listener; I feel like I’m being drawn into some sort of dark seance and I can’t turn away. This track has the band leaning more towards that psychedelic vibe, but you can still here that ominous tone of punk rock lurking in there. Look for 3 on May 10th via Goner Records.
Merely a day after Hash Redactor announced a new release via Goner, the two members that play in NOTS announced they’ve got their own new album on the way. It’s this pulsing bit of post-punk, filled with swirling guitars that have the potential to cause dizzying effects. In the vocals there’s this echoed distance, as if they’ve been recorded in some abandoned industrial warehouse, furthering the dark vibe at play here. Slimmed down to a three piece, the band doesn’t seem to have missed a beat, leading me to believe that good things are in store with 3; it drops on May 10th via Goner Records.
You’d expect nothing short of the sound below if you found out that members of Ex-Cult and NOTS formed a new band named Hash Redactor. There’s this heavy post-punk, consistently being spliced into pieces by jagged guitar chords as the matter-of-fact vocal delivery serves to steady the ship. We get to hang out here, in an anxious state, which only grows around the 2 minute mark as the song gets more frantic, more discordant, rushing listeners to the song’s end. Drecksound, the band’s debut album, will be released by Goner Records on April 26th.