Mohawk had an exceptional week with two sold out shows, but perhaps none was more personally anticipated than that of the Cloud Nothings line-up on Saturday evening. I love every single band that was on that bill, and for those that caught all the acts, I’m sure they feel exactly the same. Read on for some words and photos from Brian Gray. Read more
Sometimes the madness that is the Austin music scene just never stops. This week’s been pretty ridiculous as it is, but the great shows keep coming…and I’m not just talking about that Vampire Weekend or Cloud Nothings show; there are some incredible local bills to catch, including a pretty awesome release show. Here’s my suggestions on where you might want to find yourself this weekend. Read more
Just a short bit ago I praised the debut album from New York’s Nude Beach; it ended up making our list of top albums for 2012. Luckily for us all, we didn’t have to wait long before new tunes came our way; they have a brand new 7″ coming out for Other Music Recording. Again, the group is channeling the history of American rock n’ roll, but doing it with even more grit and balls than some of their predecessors. This tune definitely has the hooks to keep you interested, and the songwriting to show these boys are a force to be reckoned with going forth.
Nude Beach is a band that received tons of coverage from us last year with their incredible album II. Hell, a spot on the top songs list AND the top albums list in the same year basically means you are ATH approved for life and can do no wrong. The band may be in for another big year and are kicking things off with this new song “I’m Giving Up”. Of course it’s a rock n roll tune with some super slick guitars that don’t seem to quit jamming until the song is done blasting through its 2 and a half minutes.
This is the B-Side on a new 7″ single with A-side “What Can Ya Do”.
Here it is. I know you’ll hate it; I know you’ll disagree, but that’s not the point in making an arbitrary list. We here at ATH worked really hard to fit in the tastes of the four of us, and when we decided upon our Top 50, it really boied down to simple math. What albums did we love when they came out? Do we still enjoy spinning those records months later? If they’re in the Top 50, then the asnwer is probably yes. I mean, our Top 2 records came out in January, and still play a vital part in my weekly listening. There’s no disclaimer here. We are who we are, we like what we like, and we hope that’s okay with you. If not, drop us a line and let us know where we went wrong.
There’s very few records out there that force you to pause and take a deep breath, momentarily reflecting upon the great possibilities that await you. This is precisely what happened to me when I first put on II, the latest release from New York’s Nude Beach. For me, it’s exactly everything I love in music…a little bit punk, a little bit pub and a whole lot of hooks; isn’t that what we all want?
“Radio” is the opener for II, and it’s a great way to start things; it’s sort of power-pop, but the type that was sung by your older brother when he was hanging out doing Springsteen covers with his friends. This vocal’s not punk rock; there’s a bit of classic American pop sensibility, which is refreshing in this genre. And of course, the band moves into a bit of their Elvis Costello work on the following track “Walking Down My Street,” but I like the slight bit of yelp that comes through; it balances out with the smoothness of the song’s chorus.
But, as much as I love to write about great power-pop tunes, Nude Beach adds an extra bit of pop that lays outside the tried-and-true formula. You take a tune like “You Make It So Easy,” and you can tell that this group isn’t defined by the historical context of the tunes they obviously favor. I like the mellower approach, the touches of keyboard bouncing in the background and I don’t even mind the guitar solo. You’ll also find hints of a good old-fashioned ballad by way of “Don’t Have to Try,” which is pretty much just a slow jam to close down the night at the bars, again with a late touch of organ in the background.
While it’s refreshing to see that II isn’t fueled by pure energy through and through, the peppy songs don’t hurt the release by any means. “Cathedral Echoes” is perhaps the most punk rock jam on the album, with furious pacing by the percussion section and a bratty bent on the vocals. I like the swagger you can feel coming through the speakers on this tune, adding a bit of bounce to the record as it’s stuck between a few softer tunes. Album closer “Loser in the Game” has a similar edgy punch to it, but the song itself is a bit steadier, with a bit of that pub-rock swoon swinging atop the instruments. For me, it’s all good fun, and that’s what I want from my rock n’ roll.
Nude Beach may have been bouncing around their local scene, but they’ve executed a pretty flawless album with II. There are songs with a romantic leaning, there are tunes with energy, but it’s all done with a working class sensibility, making it one of the most enjoyable records I’ve written about in a long time. Now’s the time for these dudes, and this effort shows that times are good…and they’ll only get better.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Walkin_Down_My_Street.mp3]
Download:Nude Beach – Walkin Down My Street [MP3]
One of the acts I’m really excited for everyone to catch onto this year is Nude Beach. Personally, I don’t think there’s really anything else out there like this at the moment, with a fusion of classic pop rock and lo-fi garage. Their new album II will come out on August 14th via Other Music Recording Co, which has made some great signings. If you’re looking to get transported back into the past a little bit, but hold onto a hint of your hipster credibility, then you gotta fall in love with Nude Beach; you won’t be disappointed.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/01-radio.mp3]
Now, this is a band I’m definitely going to get behind! Nude Beach is from NY, and you can see some lineage to old school NY. The group’s got this swagger and this street-smart sound…and there’s a hint of garage pop to boot. They’ve recently signed on to Other Music Recording Co, who will help put out the group’s newest record, II, on August 14th this year. It’s a track that should have pretty much all music fans salivating, using bits of modern indie rock fused with a classic street sound. I’m going to love this record, and I bet you will too.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Walkin_Down_My_Street.mp3]