Show Preview: Superchunk @ Mohawk (11/1)

Date 11/1/12
Location Mohawk
Doors 7pm
Tickets FREE with FFFfest wristband

Well now this ladies and gentlemen is one hell of a show we’ve got going down in Austin on Thursday night at the Mohawk.  Our headliner for the evening is legendary band Superchunk on the outside stage. That alone should be enough for most of you, but let’s also mention that supporting outside bands are Imperial Teen and Joyce Manor so that should sweeten the deal.  Oh and you’ve also got some awesome up and coming bands playing the inside stage known as Terrible Feelings, Mind Spiders, Wiccans, and The Impalers.  I wish could say that’s all folks, but also remember that the entire show is FREE with your Fun Fest wristband.  Thanks you Mohawk and thank you Transmission.  You rule.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/1-01-Digging-For-Something-1.mp3]

Download: Superchunk – Digging for Something [MP3]

Imperial Teen – Feel the Sound

Rating: ★★★½☆

After nearly two decades together, what’s their left for a band to accomplish, or say that matter?  Well, after spending the last few days with Feel the Sound, the most recent release by Imperial Teen, it’s clear that there’s plenty more to be done.  There’s always been an infectious brightness to the band, and they don’t hold back on this effort, giving you 11 new tracks to which you can tap your toes.

“Runaway” doesn’t hit hard, but it hits you in all the right places.  Guy/girl vocals, one of the band’s specialties, provides a certain sentiment of joyousness, propelling the album along in the precise manner one would expect.  As the song rolls along, a smile will begin to spread from ear to ear.  This approach seems to be the most successful on Feel the Sound, with songs like “All the Same” using steady drumming, precision guitar play and a penchant for a nice hook to keep us bobbing along with the group.  Listening to the increased pace and stomping drums in the middle of the aforementioned track will have you seeing precisely why Imperial Teen have been able to win us over again and again.

Don’t think that the record’s just going to pound you with furious bubblegum flavor from start to finish, as restraint is definitely a forte on this outing.  One of the standout tracks, “Don’t Know How You Do It,” really comes across as an indifferent jam, yet you’ll find that it slinks its way into your heart.  Monosyllabic chants always get me, personally, but the effortless cool of the track itself reminds one of the great tracks by current label mates, Shout Out Louds. “Overtaken” has a much more melancholy tone for listeners, almost in the vein of mellow post-rock, which might come as a surprise for most fans.  The lyrical line of “it’s overtaking us” provides in ominous mood, yet those soaring harmonies always make it hard to fall too deep into the darkness with Imperial Teen.

While there’s plenty to absorb, musically speaking, on Feel the Sound, it’s an interesting collection of tunes.  None of these tracks are going to absolutely blow your mind, but there’s a certain playfulness that allows you to really get carried away in the listening experience. Take the brief, “It’s You,” with its sexy vibe and sprightly bounce and you’ll hear the sort of maximum enjoyment that band can offer up in a heartbeat.  Whether you’re looking for a solemn tune, or something to lift up the spirits, this record really does have it all.  A little bit of time, and you’ll realize exactly why Imperial Teen have been able to sustain such great longevity; the band’s just flat-out good, simple as that.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/01-Imperial-Teen-Feel-the-Sound-Runaway.mp3]

Download:Imperial Teen – Runaway [MP3]

Bright New Pop from Imperial Teen

Much like the beginning of 2011, stalwart label Merge Records is going to kick off 2012 with another excellent gem; they’ll be releasing the new release from Imperial Teen titled Feel the Sound.  The record is going to hit stores on January 31st, and it figures to hit all the spots you’ve come to expect from the band, including gang vocal sing-a-longs full of bright harmonies.  Every time I go back and listen to an Imperial Teen record I just get this feeling of giddiness that’s only accomplished by listening to the best pop out there.  Surely after listening to this track we can expect that same feeling when this new release hits early next year.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/01-Imperial-Teen-Feel-the-Sound-Runaway.mp3]

Download: Imperial Teen – Runaway [MP3]