One More From Fruit Bats

The upcoming release of the new Fruit Bats album Gold Past Fast Life is steadily approaching and I have personally renewed my love of the band these past couple of months. Growing my reawakening is this new single, and title track of the album “Gold Past Life”. This is truly Fruit Bats at their very best. Eric D. Johnson is crooning away with his shrill vocals over some jangly guitars and the best Americana, indie folk/pop sounds money can buy. You’ll want to pick up this album when drops on June 21st via Merge Records.

Fruit Bats Back Again

It’s possible Eric D. Johnson and his project known as Fruit Bats has garnished more praise on this website over the years than any other band. It’s totally warranted from a a group that can continuously put out fantastic songs like this new one “The Bottom of It”. This is a lovely track featuring more of the mellow, country/beach vibe the band has always executed better than most. If this song is any indication, this album will be pre-ordered by me right now.

Fruit Bats will release Gold Past Life on June 21st on Merge Records.

Brilliant New Song From Shout Out Louds

I have no idea why ATH has yet to talk about the new Shout Out Louds records… Let me apologize profusely for our absent mindedness and hit you with latest teaser track from the new album “Paola”. Just sneaking in before the album’s release date tomorrow, this new single is classic SOL material and I couldn’t be happier. The rhythm section creates this tight, driving force to the song as the vocals from Adam Olenius play off the sounds perfectly. I forgot how much I like this band.

Shout Out Louds will release Ease My Mind on Merge tomorrow. Buy yourself a copy here.

Paola by Shout Out Louds on VEVO.

Powerful Track From Waxahatchee

10_700_700_549_waxahatchee_ivytrip_900pxBeen perusing the internet a little bit today and found this great new track from indie rocker Katie Crutchfield and her project known as Waxahatchee.  The track is called “Air” and is a simple, yet powerful tune, with its banging drums and washed out guitar driving us throughout.  Press play and enjoy the same thing I’ve been jamming all morning.

Pick up new album, Ivy Tripp, on April 7th via Merge.

Video Premiere: Spider Bags

10_700_700_521_spiderbags_900pxSpider Bags put out an incredibly underrated album entitled Frozen Letter this August on Merge.  Some great tracks are hidden in there, including this one called “Summer of ’79”.  Many of you may have heard the tune before, but today I’m excited to be premiering a video for the rockin’ song.  It’s a live version of the track so you can see and hear the band in all it’s punk rock stylin’ glory.  Follow the jump for video.

Read more

New EP From Twerps

Upload_SxSW2ndSt_2012_03_16-15_09_55It’s been quite some time since we’ve heard from our Australian friends in Twerps and I’m excited today to share reports of some new music from the band.  Apparently Merge has swooped in and signed the band and are releasing a brand new EP of material entitled Underlay.  Lucky for you and I, the label is offering up the EP in its entirety for the next week via soundcloud.  Naturally we will embed the entire thing here for your listening pleasure.  I haven’t made it through the whole thing just yet, but I’m sure it’s going to be incredible.

Stay tuned for more information on an upcoming full length release in 2015.

Fun Rock Track From Spider Bags

spiderbags2-525x554This new jam called “Back With You Again in the World” by Spider Bags caught my ear today and I wanted to share it with you guys.  It’s a fun rock tune that reminds me of The Men with a sweet Springsteen style saxophone which creates a vintage sounding number.  I dig the straightforwardness and the fun that these guys appear to be having while making this music.

New album, Frozen Letter, will be available on August 6th via Merge Records.

She & Him – Volume 3

sheandhim

Rating: ★★★½ ·

When it comes to indie queens of the Continental United States, there’s no skirting around it, Zooey Deschanel holds her own. Toting her own TV show, girly advice website, and, of course, half of this dynamic duo, she’s got her plate full. And of course, the Him of the title, M. Ward, has his own musical career in addition to this side project. So sometimes it’s even easy to forget about She & Him, but Volume 3 is a nice little reminder of the talent within this pair.

This third effort in this series of albums from She & Him is far from a reflection of its collective members being busy with their own lives, and more of a representation of the goodness that these two have to offer to the indie music scene. First up, they come at you swinging in “I’ve Got Your Number, Son,” which makes for a burst of color to start the album. High-pitched yelps and ‘oohs’ from Zooey are the first sounds to reach your ears, and from this instant, you know Volume 3 is going to be a work of higher energy from these two.

Higher energy, yes, but they still stick to their retro, Phil Spector ‘wall-of- sound’ style for this third work. Which leads me to essentially the same criticism I had with Volume Two: there’s just not a lot different than their previous album, or even Volume One. Granted, it works for the two of them, as Deschanel’s vocals seem to belong to another era entirely, and are suited nicely by the musical accompaniment of rag-timey piano, acoustic guitar, some simple bass lines. However while the band takes advantage of this to craft a style, which they have thus adhered to up to this point, on the tracks that don’t exactly pop out from the rest, the lack of novelty works against these two and I found myself tuning it out—it’s been done before…by them.

But that’s not to say that Volume 3 doesn’t have some mighty fine good tunes for fans or those who have been under a rock since 2008. In fact, there are quite a few hits on here that stand out not only on the album level, but also through She & Him’s whole catalog. There’s singles like “I Could’ve Been Your Girl” and “Sunday Girl,” that evoke a sassier side of Zooey, playing on her vocal tones and even employing a bit of playful French. On the other hand, at the end of the album you have some excellent slower numbers like “London” and “Shadow of Love–” both will wow you with their simple power and beauty within Deschanel’s vocals.

The bottom line is there’s nothing really fundamentally new to the style on Volume 3, which may exactly be what the band is going for by continuing the trend of entitling their albums ‘Volumes.’ If such is the case, then this is a contender for the most hits.

Chaos in Tejas Preview: The Clean

We continue our Chaos in Tejas coverage with one of the bands that I’m most excited to see, New Zealand’s The Clean!

Anytime you listen to some jangling garage pop track, or off-beat power pop, the odds are, that band was influenced by the Clean, who’ve been releasing songs since 1981; their first single is the track we’re featuring below.

They didn’t actually release a full-length album until almost a decade into their career, instead compiling tons of singles to release as compilations on the legendary Flying Nun label in their home country.  But, disbanding and focusing on different groups, often incestuous groups with other NZ acts like the Chills, saw them sort of sputter out, barely making the radar outside of their island home.  Hopefully, that all changed when Merge released their album, Mister Pop, a few years back, bringing the band some new fans.

For me, I say start with the Anthology, as that was my first introduction to the band many years ago; it’s got tons of great singles waiting to be your favorite track.  Within those songs you’ll see the energy and wit that defined the group’s sound, leading them to be one of the most revered, yet underappreciated acts, of all time.  I’ve never seen them though, and I know it won’t be the same as watching them back in the day, but just to hear some of these songs live will further complete my life as a music fan.  They’ll definitely be worth your time.

They play at 11 PM at Club Deville on Saturday, June 2nd.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/03-Tally-Ho.mp3]

Download:The Clean – Tally Ho [MP3]

1 2