Top 25 Albums of 2019

This is the list you’ve all been waiting for, well, sort of. This is my Top 20 LPs of the year. Admittedly, there’s none of the high profile hitmakers on here, but that’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy those albums. I loved Purple Mountains just as much as the next person, same with Weyes Blood, but in a pickle, would I choose it over that Martha LP? Uh, absolutely not. Plus, I ran a lot this year because I got tired of being fat, so the majority of this stuff is pretty upbeat and “runnable.” There’s no order because all are equal under my ears.

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Delicious Indiepop from Fortitude Valley

I knew without even listening to this great Fortitude Valley tune that it would rule. The project stems from the mind of Laura Kovic, who played keys in Tigercats (a band that rules), but she grabbed members from Martha and Night Flowers (more bands that rule), so you knew, knew…it was going to be good. I was absolutely right, as the song starts slow, building in the natural movement over Kovic’s warm voice; I love how the fuzzy guitar shoots off in the distance behind the more purposeful licks in the very front. I was charmed right away, but the big hook comes around the 2 minute mark when extra backing vocals are included to really pull on your pop strings. As of right now, the band are wrapping up their debut, so here we are on proverbial pins and needles.

A Year End List from Joe Smyth of Nine Mile Records and Touring

Joe Smyth help us keep our Austin theme today, as he’s one of the folks helping get Austin acts (and others) out on the road. But, more importantly, he’s a scavenger of music news, so he’s given us a couple of great lists…one a shout out to the blogs that turned him onto great music…and the other just a general best of list. Peruse as you must, and if you have touring needs…check out Nine Mile Touring.

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Martha Share The Void

Admittedly, it’s only March, but my favorite LP of this year has to be this brand new Martha tune, so I’m going to back that up with sharing this delicious song. This song encompasses everything I love about Love Keeps Kicking. It’s energetic in every way, but there’s this natural sense of having a blast that seeps through your speakers. Here, it comes your way via this male/female vocal barrage, aided by the anthemic backing shout. Just when you think you’re getting too old to listen to proper pop-punk Martha are kicking down your door with antoerh emphatic jam! The new LP will be out via Big Scary Monsters/Dirtnap on April 5th.

Listen to More Martha

It seems like pop-punk bands are once again a dime-a-dozen, although admittedly there’s an abundance of more talented acts. So, let me clear the rest out of the way, the only band you might need right now is Martha. Their new album Love Keeps Kicking is non-stop hits, filled with catchy choruses and huge riffs that led me to playing my meanest air-guitar as I walked my daughter through our suburban neighborhood. This tune below is just one of the many great numbers, dealing with the subject of a shitty situation in a surprisingly uplifting manner. This band rules. This song rules. This album rules. Get a copy when Dirtnap drops it in April.

Today’s Catchy Martha Jam

I’m really hopeful that the new Martha record will make waves over here, hopefully encouraging the band to do a lengthy tour that includes Austin on this go-round. The band craft some of the catchiest pop-punk around, and Love Keeps Kicking is sure to fulfill on the continued progress of the hit-making machine. I love a band that can match the vocals, the drums and the guitars all at once, crashing down with this euphoric feeling that makes you happy to be alive. The video even has a nice little breakdown near the end, or an interlude, just to tease us with another round of hooks. The new record drops on April 1st via Big Scary Monsters/Dirtnap Records.

Martha Should Be Your New Favorite Band

marthaOn the latest single from Martha, the group opens up really casually, just working the approach with vocals and guitars. That segment alone wins my fandom, based on the sweet vocal tones that are present…but some people need a bit more. You can feel it coming in this track, a faint buzz in the speakers up until the 1 minute mark, and then they blast off. They bring a crashing bit of pop rock fueled by gang vocals and distorted riffs that will ring in your ears, just as you try to memorize every second of the lyrics. This track appears on Blisters in the Pit of My Heart, which will be released in July via Dirtnap and Fortuna Pop.

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Jam This Martha Tune! Jam It Loud!

marthaDo you wanna feel young? You wanna feel like you’re alive again? Then run to your stereo, get this Martha song on it, and turn it up really loud. It’s a blasting bit of pop-punk that’s as infectious as it is memorable. The riffs are huge, the drums catch and there’s gang harmonies blasting in and out of the song. I get the feeling that these guys are all substance and none of the bullshit posturing. Sounds like they’re all just having fun, and if you listen closely, then you just might do the same. Look for their album, Blisters in the Pit of My Heart to come out on July 8th via Dirtnap/Fortuna Pop.

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Jam This New Martha EP

martaI love a good batch of enthusiastic punk rock tunes, especially when they come with a bit of rambunctious attitude, and possibly a bit of lo-fi recording value. Martha have been on my radar for some time, after releasing Courting Strong via Fortuna Pop.  So, they’ve now got this great little 10″ EP coming out, even though the tunes are a few years old.  The self-titled EP is getting a vinyl release courtesy of Brighton’s Tuff Enuff Records, and those of you who are into the rock n’ roll are definitely going to enjoy it. You can stream the whole EP below and grab the EP HERE.