Hemhora and the Glass Band is a conglomerate pop group, made up of various members of Heligoats and Hungry Mountain. Together, these members are crafting dramatic pop music, built to maximize emotion for every listener. How’s that done? Well, you’ve got to take care with the song’s craft, from rolling notes of bells or strings being carefully plucked, it all builds upon itself, allowing the vocals really bring things home. Speaking of the vocals, they walk the fine line between Eef Barzelay and Travis Morrison, so it has this traditional folk feel with just the slightest bit of oddity, continuing the band’s draw for listeners. You’ll find enjoyment below, and if that is indeed the case, then might you consider picking up their Helix Pattern Blues via Greyday Records.
There’s something about Chase DeMaster’s writing for Get a Life that seems built for the every-man. It’s accessible and hook-laden, crafted with just enough flare of indifference to make the cool kids swoon. It probably doesn’t hurt that Yuuki Matthews (Shins) handled the production for the recording; it’s clear that there’s a sense of layered pop sensibility, particularly in the way vocals are trapped on top of one another. Of course, no great pop song is complete with out its ability to relate to the listener, so just spend time listening to all the people telling Chase to get a job in this song. You’ll know exactly how he feels, which likely means we’ll all find ourselves relating to the hooks and lyrics from the band’s new album, Our Band Could Be Your Life, out next February.
David Lance Callahan has been part of the music community as long as I’ve been alive (30+ years); he’s been part of both The Wolfhounds and Moonshake, but we’re getting to here him below entirely on his own. He’s crafted this delicate, pastoral tune, perfect to take us all into the Winter seasons,offering warmth for those close listeners. Callahan recorded these tunes at home, simply, utilizing little more than guitar and a sampler, with a few friends thrown in to provide the harmonies; the technique definitely provides the listener a certain intimacy that brings you into the world of the songwriter. You’ll find this track as an A-side tune for the SLR30 Single Series, and odds are you’ll find a new album in the works for 2019 as well. Don’t worry if you didn’t sign up for the SLR30SS, as Slumberland generally has a few extras on hand.
Oakland outfit Rays don’t want you to get too comfortable with their “sound,” and they don’t want you to get too comfy with your pop music. They enter the fray here with discordant guitars ringing and a rolling drum beat that sets the mood for a matter-of-fact vocal delivery. But, put your ear next to the speaker, real close like. You’ll hear a slight buzz throughout, an additional layer perhaps added by the bands newest member, keyboardist Britta; it also sounds like horns are brought in as well, so you’re getting far more than you bargained for with your average pop song. It’s frantic, almost spastic, yet wound tightly by superior musicianship so that your ears won’t know what hit ’em. Look for the band’s new LP You Can Get There From Here via Trouble in Mind Records on November 9th.
Admittedly, sometimes pop music can get stale or blend in with like-minded artists. Spooky Cigarette is not that band! Their newest song hints at the current underbelly of indiepop, using twinkling guitars amidst a marching rhythm section. But, the vocals of Frank Mindingall have this dreamy yearning, that seems to work separate from the rest of the act. It ends up creating this frantic tornado of pop music that sweeps you out of your chair and into your go-to dance move. There’s just this undying carefree attitude being tossed about that definitely draws everyone into their musical galaxy. Keep an eye out for this San Diego bunch, as it looks like they’re having a hell of a time.
Tomorrow you’ll be able to get your hands on Crazy Love, the latest batch of song’s from Austin’s Will Courtney. On his final single before the release, he had me with the opening piano prelude…it doesn’t take too much. Then the track settles in with Will’s voice carrying a light bit of scratchiness, like a cooler Tom Petty…that is until he reaches the chorus. He stretches himself, reaching for higher vocal notes, which in my mind recalls the best of the Americana genre, especially when its accompanied by the layered musicianship behind it. You can tell with every note he hits, and every layered bit of instrumentation that Courtney’s fine-tuned all those bits of promise he’s shared with us over the years. Crazy Love will drop Friday via Super Secret Records.
After wandering for separately for a few years, Mark and Bob of The Dentists fame joined together once more to form The Treasures of Mexico, releasing their debut Holding Pattern in 2015. Since then, we’ve been teased with the insatiable “Super Cute,” but now we have a new single…and an album announcement! Everything Sparks Joy will be released on October 5th via Shelflife, and you can have another track to whet your appetite below. Almost immediately, the song has a natural bounce; the drums seem to hop through the speakers, grabbing you in your arms and hopping up and down. Once the vocals enter calmly, things seemingly settle, though the cascading chorus guitar definitely drives home a heavier punch. As the song bounds, you’d be quite pleased to just appreciate the offering, but the band have other ideas, as they add a nice female accompanying vocal just before the 3 minute mark to build in an added sense of charm. You want timeless pop? Doesn’t get better than this! Pre-order the album HERE.
The best thing about Ben Millburn is that very few acts, if any, sound anything like him here in Austin; that should bode well here, and hopefully beyond city limits. It would be easy to pigeon-hole this brand new single as something akin to psychedelia, and while I see that, there’s also this jazzier funk that underlies. Wrap that up in a blanket of pop influences and you get this amalgam of sonic touchstones that takes you on a journey into the future of music. You’ll find this number on the band’s new album, Sunglass Moustache, which the band are self-releasing on September 14th. Enjoy your own spaced out musical adventure below!
We’ve previously written about Scott Danbom‘s new project, Static Diary, and today we’re happy to share the animated video for album track “Phrase from Business.” It’s a delicate number from the get-go, with a bare piano accompanying Scott’s voice; that piano eventually leans into a heavier electronic pulse. Danborn’s voice has this certain fragility to it that’s intoxicating; it hits it’s peak as the song swell’s around the chorus. About two minutes in, the song surges into a heavy handed jam of sorts, fuzzy and ominous ’til the fadeout. It’s a gorgeous number, and you’ll find it on the Static Diary LP, which drops Friday.
And, if you happen to be in the Denton area, Scott and band have their release show at Dan’s Silver Leaf on Saturday night!
Ladada recently announced their long awaited debut album, Heaven on the Rocks, and today we’re happy to share the album’s second single with you. Immediately you’ll hear the band’s raucous throwback sound, made fresh with subtle hooks and bubbling movement from the rhythm section. What I like a great deal, and what gets the band lumped in with new-psych is there tempo switch, changing the direction of the song, albeit for a brief moment; it is light and sunny and sets up the band’s noisy shuffle to the song’s boisterous ending. You can preorder the new LP from Gold Robot Records; it drops in October!