Well we all know at this point SXSW is officially over. We are hearing a lot about many unofficial shows proceeding as planned, with our annual Sunday kick off show still a go. Thought the fest is cancelled, it still seems like a fun thing to talk to bands who were originally on the bill to see what life is like on the road. Today I’ve got one last interview for you from Philadelphia based group Suburban Living. It seems like a fitting way to end this series as these are some of the best, and most thoughtful answers so far. Hit the jump for the interview.
I’m not totally sure what’s going on with everyone in masks throughout this video, but they all seem to be grooving to this new track from Arch of Love, so I can get behind that. It’s a cool synth pulse moving the song along, cut in the opening moments by this meandering guitar chord, building this heavy pop feel that leaves the floor open for the vocals. It definitely has this nostalgic feel to it, build upon 80s new wave sounds, though you can clearly hear the group trying to make things much brighter and bolder, particularly in the way Chelsea Brennan’s voice hits those higher tones.
It’s Tuesday, so it’s time to turn your stereos way up and have yourself a little fun, and what better way than with some fresh power-pop from Wild Flowers of America. The video is a sort of homage to the stylistic choices of late 70s/early 80s Elvis Costello videos, and to be honest, the song’s not too far off either. It starts with this almost muted guitar riff, harnessing the natural pop energy behind those riffs, only to unleash them in the chorus in a grand fashion. I definitely appreciate the good old rock n’ roll solo that closes the tune out; this is some of the best pop rock you’ll hear all week! This jam appears on Lost in the Salvation Army, out this Friday via Crutch of Memory Enterprises.
A couple of years ago Philadelphia based The Districts put out one of my favorite albums of that year with the release of Popular Manipulations. Since then, I’ve steadily jammed that album with a couple of other new singles as anticipation built for more new tunes from the band. Lucky for me, yesterday the band announced a new album with this new single called “Hey Jo” as the first teaser. As per usual, I love the unique sound the band can create and the ease at which the song progresses beautifully over three and a half minutes. This is sure to be one of my favorites of next year.
The Districts will release You Know I’m Not Going Anywhere on March 13th via Fat Possum.
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I’m not sure how we let these things happen, but it seems we have never shared any of the stellar music created by Philadelphia based band The Menzingers. I think some of it is due to other sites beating us to the new tunes, or maybe we are just not as with it as we used to be. Either way, today we remedy the situation by loading heaps of praise on this banging new track from the band called “Strangers Forever”. For me, it’s kind of like the expertly crafted post-punk/emo songs crafted by bands like Jimmy Eat World with grittier vocals like Laura Jane Grace. It’s a nice evolution and updated sound a genre devoid of bands doing anything new. Personally, I love this stuff.
The Menzingers will release new album Hello Exile via Epitaph on October 4th.
Admittedly, there’s something nostalgic in the sound that Tom Morris is crafting under his Swim Camp moniker. He’s just released Barlow Hill, and while listening I was thrust back to the late 90s where I was filling my CD collection with Jade Tree/Polyvinyl releases. But, that doesn’t mean this sounds dated, and in fact, is quite the opposite, fitting right into the modern fold of indie rock. As you listen through, you’ll feel the intimacy, as if Morris is performing in your living room; you can feel the hum of the guitar strings as the waft through your speakers. It’s a glorious listen from the start to finish, so indulge in the joys of this listen.
AllegrA should already be on your radar, and if you haven’t listened then perhaps go spend some time on their bandcamp page, browsing everything you’ve been missing. There’s now news of the Yet, Not Enough EP, which will be released by Citrus City on March 12th. My favorite thing is how the track slowly builds; it opens softly, mostly working muted guitar riffs behind the vocals. The chords begin to expand from there, drums and keys join in, adding depth to the track that certainly elevates the band’s brand of basement pop. I’m really stuck on this song today, so if you’re looking for the feels, look no further.
Philadelphia’s SOLD might not be a household name at this point, but here’s to hoping you spend some time getting to know the group now…especially as they have a new EP on the horizon. The band’s musical diversity keeps the below single interesting, starting off with this bounding opening that definitely draws from the band’s indie rock influences. Different vocals in the song’s middle bring the track to life; I think one even has an almost folk-y drawl, which is contrasted by the song’s natural haunting; there might even be some Arcade Fire yelps too! Then the guitars cascade down in an angular fashion, like pelting rains, matched by similarly fashioned vocal lines. Feels Unreal comes out today courtesy of Hits Direct Records.
As you likely know, I’m a bit of a nostalgia geek when it comes to music, and I’ve loved the reemergence of several of my favorite old genres. Today my homies in Philly based band Restorations are furthering my foray into older sounds with this jam “The Red Door”. The song has a sort of old school emo vibe to it from the early years of the genre akin to bands like Sunny Day or The Cast. Those sounds combined with the gritty, angry vocals of lead singer Jon Loudon makes for a new experience in a somewhat old school genre.
Restorations will release LP5000 on September 8th via Tiny Engines.
Honey Radar first bounced onto our radar when the Philly act released their second LP via What’s Your Rupture. Today, they’ve announced a brand new EP is on the way via Chunklet Industries; it’s titled Psychic Cruise. Immediately you’re going to toss out that psychedelic vibe, but the song’s brevity and casual demeanor make it a far cry from that far out land. Sure, I can hear some of the guitars giving you the impression, but just the smooth delivery of the lyrics gives the song a whole lot more polish and assuredness. Jamming can be cool, but it’s only as cool as the song will take it…and this tune takes it pretty far in under a minute and a half; look for the EP on April 20th.