It’s been a gift that continues to give me things I love, with Slumberland’s SLR30 Series wrapping up with its final singles on December 4th! It looks as if we’re going out with a bang, with one 7″ from UK’s Flowers and the other a new 7″ from one of my personal favorites, Neutrals! We’re treated to the A-Sides for both singles, and man, pretty sure we all win with these being added to the fold. The Flowers track is more powerful than I remember the band from some of their earlier releases, though it still hones in on the band’s penchant for melodic pop. Neutrals on the other hand do what they do best, buzzing through 2 minutes with infectious power pop punk; I think this might be the best recording from the band, with Allan’s voice spitting the lines out with this incredible sharpness. If you didn’t get the subscribe to the SLR30 Series, don’t worry, you can grab your own copy from Slumberland Records shop!
Fresh off the release of the wonderful Kebab Disco, Neutrals turned right around and dropped their Rent/Your House EP, with proceed going directly towards RAICES and Border Angels. Below you’ll find a fresh new video dropping today for the tune “Rent;” the video is made up of images of Scotland shot on Super 8 film by Sandy Carson and spliced together to match this track. It’s one of the shorter tracks on the record, rushing in rambunctiously like all hell’s breaking loose with only Allan’s voice steady enough to right the ship here. A quick little punky jaunt for a good cause? Stream the whole EP on Bandcamp!
Last year Neutrals burst onto the scene with Kebab Disco, but with all the hubbub of Bandcamp today…the band has two new offerings of important. First, they’ve tossed up a demo of a brand new track…you can hear that HERE. Second, they’ve just put up orders for their new Rent/Your House EP via Domestic Departure Records. In order to promote the new release, they’re currently sharing the below cover of the classic track from the Exploited, “Hitler’s in the Charts Again.” Now, I know we’re all focused on COVID-19, as we should be, but, this release is donating all proceeds to both RAICES and Border Angels…two important organizations helping immigrant families/causes; we should keep in mind that this pandemic is not the only problem facing the US today. Maybe you like the cause, maybe you like the song…either way, the money goes where its needed most.
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.
There’s a handful of really really great tape labels out there, and one that is near and dear to our hearts is Lost Sound Tapes, run by Jon Manning. He’s done an incredible job of curating, and I almost always find myself in love with a handful of his releases each year, like Olivia’s World and Lisa Prank this year! So, I reached out and asked him to pop off with some of his favorite releases…and here we are. Enjoy!
As we’re all looking back on the year 2019, I tend to gravitate towards lists with little agenda, other than to shine a light back on the year in the areas I adore. For one, the indiepop scene. Now, there’s always a great big debate about what indie pop is, so for all intents and purposes, I admit that I just don’t care, so the genre’s purists can yell at me later. Now, this may read as a best of, but merely this is the stuff that stuck out in my brain, so if I missed something, I love you and I’m sorry. Honestly, it just gave me a chance to make a fun playlist (2+ hours!) full of hits for all you pop fans.
Last week while you were celebrating America, I was celebrating the great music to come our way in 2019. One of the albums at the top of my list was Kebab Disco by Neutrals. Today, they’ve shared a video for one of the album’s standout hits, so I feel like you should enjoy it, if only for another reference point on as to why you need this LP. The opening moments are owned by that bass line, brooding and bopping before the guitar jumps in to sort of skirt and dance around it. There’s this disaffected youth vibe to the track, which is perhaps why I adore it so much…something youthful and rebellious…I’m grasping at straws in my old age. Regardless, if you like the song, buy the album from Emotional Response.
It’s super-hard to really nail down your favorite albums, especially when its only July and the whole thing seems pretty arbitrary, to put it lightly. But, like all your favorite sites, hits matter; they make you feel cool. So, I have concocted my own list of the Best Albums of 2019…so far. This in no way is a representation of the whole of the site contributors, and merely exists as poor commentary by a blogger with too much time on his hands. Enjoy!
If that bobbing bass line that opens up this new single from Neutrals doesn’t get you, then I think you might want to call a doctor. That didn’t work? Well, maybe take into account the group features members of Terry Malts, Cocktails and Giant Haysticks? That should do the trick. But, if you’re still struggling, then let the rhythm push you on, then await those circular guitar lines that up the ante on the songs natural enemy. You might get a little offset with the deadpan delivery of the vocals, but those of you with punk rock in your veins should be more than ok. With only a handful of demos to their name, Kebab Disco aims to be a pretty powerful debut; it’s available for pre-order from Emotional Response.