Honey Radar Is Super Hip

12234920_1664698017140133_7132038731607968554_nI like to think of What’s Your Rupture as the label that births the cool. Seems like every band they work with at some point explodes and gets cool; see Love is All, Parquet Courts and Royal Headache. One of the newest releases is this very small scale 7″ by Honey Radar, and I’ve got big expectations for this band’s sound. Not sure how one would really identify their sound, though you can hear all sorts of influences from lo-fi to jangling pop to art punk; it makes for a beautiful sound that I can’t believe more people aren’t clamoring over just yet. Guess that’s the price one pays for being ahead of the curve. Stream the 7″ below and BUY IT HERE.

Huge Wall of Noise from Makthaverskan

Makrhaverskan fotograferad av Jessica LundWell hello Sweden! Feel like you’ve been quiet for too long.  But, now I feel like Makthaverskan makes up for it the absence. Aside from the nod to Pussy Riot in the artwork, they take that Swedish sound of jangling guitar ring and fill it with a bit more noise; it sounds like a sloppier (albeit intentional) version of Love Is All.  The vocals have this siren quality, haunting the track and the listener while the rest of the band works furiously to provide a more rocking element.  Still, there’s a harmony to the voice that’s utterly intoxicating.  Definitely a track to keep in your rotation this weekend. This tune will appear on a Tour 7″ they’ll be bringing to the States for their huge Spring tour.

Please to Meet You: The Delphines

1378808_427574507349257_756255471_nWhile I was trying to catch up on emails from this weekend, my ear was caught by this incredible single that came into our inbox.  I hadn’t heard of the group, The Delphines, but like the power of all great tracks, I’ll now be keeping a close eye on the group.  There’s a bit of an angular post-punk quality to the style of the guitars, but at the same time the dreamy vocal quality, and its delivery, remind me an awful lot of Love Is All (a sorely missed act). It’s an energetic track, to be sure, but it also offers a bit of emotional respite in some of the more drawn out moments.  The group will be releasing their album, Hush, on May 27th, so keep an eye out for this exciting act.  Oh, and check out this exciting video that accompanies the single HERE.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/01-Hush-01-Screen-Door.mp3]

Check out the video, after the break!

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New Pop Gem from Opposite Sex

It’s been a great year for the Oceanic music to break big all over the world, from Twerps to Geoffrey O’ Connor and now to Opposite Sex.  Their self-titled album is something that should definitely make it into your weekly playlist, otherwise you’re going to be missing some special goodness.  In my mind, the first run through, I thought of a cleaner, more playful version of Love Is All, which is one of my favorite acts.  It’s got a little bit of an off-kilter stutter to it, and that definitely provides the playfulness that I hear when it comes through my speakers. Singer Lucy definitely has my attention, but the solid backing of the rest of the group is what makes this listen really fulfilling.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Opposite-Sex-Opposite-Sex-02-La-Rat.mp3]

Download: Opposite Sex – La Rat [MP3]

New Tunes from Comet Gain

This band has been one of my favorites for the longest time, and I’m super excited that they have a new 7″ titled I Never Happened.  It features the Comet Gain trademark jangle pop, which just grows on you time and time again.  This 7″ also shows some promising leads as to the new work of the band, as it features two songs that were started by the band, then finished by Love is All and Crystal Stilts.  If this is any indicator of the work to come from the band in the future, then it looks like I might have another incredible record to enjoy for years to come.  You can get the 7″ HERE.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/01-I-Never-Happened.mp3]

Download: Comet Gain – I Never Happened [MP3]

Love is All – Two Thousand and Ten Injuries

Rating: ★★★★ ·

You have to have hidden under a rock to miss the last two releases from Love is All; if you were hiding, you missed a ridiculous amount of boisterous pop tunes.  Now, the group has returned with their newest work, Two Thousand and Ten Injuries, which shows a bit more experimentation and a shift in direction.  One things for sure, nothing is as joyous as listening to this group when they’re at their best.

Once this record kicks off, you can definitely tell that Love is All is no longer in the same place, as the blistering pace has been slowed back a bit, revealing a little bit more clarity in the songs.  “Bigger Bolder” is the first tune, and you can tell that more time was spent on the guitar work, which seems to reveal a hint of nostalgic garage rock.

As a long time fan, “Never Now” is a winner.  It’s not nearly as dense as anything in their past, which allows for the playfulness in Josephine’s voice to break through.  In the past, the cacophony often overpowered the pop element, but here empty space is not being filled, so you get a more concrete song pushing through.

But, one of the things that Love is All have continued to push is the bubbly dance tracks that seem to blur the line with discordant guitars.  “Less Than Thrilled” has a guitar line that sounds an awful lot like U2 guitarist Edge, but wraps you up in its bouncy bass hooks.  “Dust” also brings about that catchy bass work in the beginning, but here you see the band reverting to their old tricks, feeding saxophone into the skeletal backbone of the tune.  You’ll find yourself loving the drum circle moment near the 2 minute mark just before the band marches you into the concluding moments.

The thing that makes Two Thousand and Ten Injuries such a strong effort, and one that might exceed their prior work, is that the band isn’t shoving every possible instrument into each inch of the record.  “A Side in the Bed” sort of meanders along while Josephine cooly drapes her vocals over the drum beat.  Barely audible guitar and saxophone work cut in and out of this track, where as the group would have filled this song to the brim in the past.  Closing the record in this manner also works to the advantage of the quintet, as you’ll find them ambling during “Take Your Time.”  This is the first time where I’ve felt an emotive quality be created from the group rather than just sheer joyous noise.  I like it both, but it makes listening to the entirety of this album much more gratifying than the quick bursts that you might have found on something like Nine Times That Song.

It’s refreshing to see that Love is All seem to have made it out of the possible rut they could have found themselves in after their first two releases.  Two Thousand and Ten Injuries shows the band experimenting with different song construction, allowing for emotional releases that often evaded older efforts.  No longer do they need to beat you over the head with energetic playground fist-pumping, instead choosing to let you relish in more complex, and complete, songs.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/02-Repetition.mp3]

Download: Love is All – Repetition [MP3]

New Tunes from Love Is All

loveisallIt really hasn’t been too long since we last heard from Love Is All, the band having put out a 12″ last year with covers and some new tunes.  Now, they’ve switched up labels completely, landing on Polyvinyl for their new release.  Said album hits stores on March 23rd, and is yet another number filled title, Two Thousand and Ten Injuries.  Give this new tune a whirl.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/Love-Is-All-Kungen.mp3]

Download: Love Is All – Kungen [MP3]

Top 40 Songs Of The Year

So when we thought making an albums of the year post was hard, this one proved to be even harder.  How do you take literally thousands of songs and narrow it down to the best 40 of the year?  Not too sure how to answer that question, but we tried.  Each of these songs scream 2008 in our ears.  As evident by this list, the year in music was quite a good one and we had some tough choices to make.  We’ve got some of the songs streaming for you or links to the song on youtube.  Follow the jump to see if your favorite tune of the year made the list.

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Love is All – A Hundred Things Keep Me Up at Night

Rating: ★★★★ ·

Last time round, this Swedish outfit brought us cleverly crafted pop tunes that wrapped themselves tidily inside walls of noise and shaky vocals from front-woman Josephine Olausson; this time around, we pretty much get the same thing, but in an appealing manner.

A Hundred Things Keep Me Up at Night starts off with “New Beginnings,” and that fresh starts is filled with horn blasts and driving guitar lines.  It’s a rapid kick-start to the listener; it’s a call to arms of sorts.  Midway through the song, the trading of male/female vocals is done up to perfection, creating delicious moments of joy.

One of the most impressive things about Love is All is that the band is still able to incorporate the usage of hors in a way that compliments the songs.  Each song is filled in with this delicate tough, which allows for the swirling of listeners to evolve a little more sporadically.  It’s one of the things that this band does to near perfection.

Along the way the band puts two of the better tracks next to each other, strengthening the middle of the album.  “Sea Sick” seems to be an escapist song, as the protagonist in the song wants escape the mundane, screaming “I’m bored to death, I’m bored of this shit.”  It’s juxtaposed to one of the best songs of the year, “Wishing Well.”  The playfulness expressed in the lyrics, and the aesthetic quality of the song create instantaneous joy.  Not to mention, this definitely has to be one of those songs that makes the audience bounce as they scream along to the chorus in unison with the band.

Suddenly, you get a slow-burner, as “When Giants Fall” comes across the stereo.  The band leaves plenty of room for feedback and dense group harmonies that echo in the background of the song.  Something about this song has a haunting quality to it, sort of like a gospel version of early Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. Then “Rumours” brings the pace right back for you.  Swing those hips kids.  Slow it down; now right back to it.

Possible detractors do exist in this album, like the fact that you still can’t tell exactly how much you would enjoy Josephine’s voice in a live setting.  Or, some of the atmospheric elements added for textural purposes, such as the male spoken vocals in the background of “19 Floors” get a bit grating.  Other than that, you’ll find that this album is every bit as exciting as the first one, some of it exceeding it’s forbearer.

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