Catching Up on the Austin Scene: Adrian Quesada, Queen Serene + More

It’s been a busy few weeks down here in Texas, musically speaking, with tons of stuff getting released left and right, so wanted to be sure we got some news out that we’re stoked to jam to as of late.

Adrian Quesada – Boleros Psicodelicos

Adrian’s work is central to Austin’s heartbeat at the moment, be it Black Pumas or his other projects. As a huge fan of traditional boleros, and psychedelic music, this combination of the two is hitting right in the sweet spot. Plus, it’s getting picked up by every NPR station, so you know your dad and his friends will be talking about it.

Queen Serene – Better Things/Waiting Room

This band is one of the more exciting recent bands to pop up on the Austin radar, and their live set matches the jams. They just recently dropped this tasty 2 song morsel for our ears, and “Better Things” frantic art-punk energy is the perfect little jam for your day.

Chronophage – Self-Titled LP

If I were to vote for my favorite listen this last week, it would be the new LP from Chronophage. Interestingly, they’ve taken their darkness and turned into this broad sweeping pop that seems fit for the underground sounds of the 80s. You gotta listen!

Charley Horse – Summer EP

This group is the new project of our old friend Kevin Cavanaugh, and his new outfit is hitting the perfect guitar pop vibes on this one; I keep coming back to an early Surfer Blood comparison. Check out their brand new 4 tune EP!

 

Florist Release Sci-fi Silence Video

This new Florist record is really shaping up to be something quite special, and this single below might be one of the most striking track on the LP. Still, like the title of the song suggests, this track is all about letting that silence operate in between the careful guitar work and Emily Sprague’s voice. Little delicate tinkerings rise and fall in the midst of the tune, tying into the thematic origin, where Sprague talks about “mystical forces that attract us to one another and the spaces in-between words that can hold profound communications.” I love the way the arrangement builds around the 4 minute mark, cementing this track as an absolute classic. Florist is out on July 29th via Double Double Whammy.

Parallel Share Drench Single

Spending today hanging out in the dark corners of the pop realm today, clearly, so it seems fitting I jump onto this Parallel track that appears on their debut self-titled LP. When it starts, you’re definitely going to hear some nods to Interpol, which doesn’t make me shy away one bit. It continues to push forward, and that’s when the band turn it on, opening the track into this more expansive moment; it builds in harmonizing vocals and allows the guitars to shimmer just a bit more. If you’re digging the band’s sound, then be sure to check out their debut LP, out via Cherub Dream Records.

Blue Ocean Share Summer of Hands Video

If Blue Ocean isn’t on your radar, you haven’t been reading this site! But, we can fix that right now by sharing the band’s brand new video for “Summer of Hands.” This tune comes from the group’s new Blue Ocean LP, which compiles remastered tunes from their stellar EPs (via Paisley Shirt) and puts them on one great release courtesy of Dandy Boy Records. If you’re new to the project, this is a perfect introduction, as they are one of the best at combining genres, as they do here by taking a jangling line of indie rock then covering it with this atmospheric squall of beautiful noise. The accompanying video here seems to match that, taking imagery of scenes near the blue oceans and coating them in a nice little bit of haze. Don’t wait for Bandcamp Friday, buy the LP HERE.

Carter Tanton Shares Uneven High Places

When Carter Tanton went to record his latest LP, he called in his friends in the War on Drugs to serve as the backing band for his project. But, as he sat on the recordings, he opted instead to strip the full band sound and go with this more delicate approach, as you get here on the latest single “Uneven High Places.” This song, like many on the record, steps on the back of gentle piano notes to set up the emotional pull; the notes at times almost seem like they’re tip-toeing through your speakers, careful not to wake anyone sleeping. Tanton’s voice echoes, like its soul is trapped in some glass box, struggling to release every intimate note. You’re not likely to find a more personable tune out there today. The self-titled LP is out May 7th via Western Vinyl.

Flowertown Announce Self-Titled LP

If you are hip enough to follow Paisley Shirt Records then you might already have Flowertown on your radar, and in fact, you might have already heard versions of the song from the band’s self-titled LP. But, Mt. St. Mtn. has announced they’ll be compiling these songs and remastering them in proper format for a first ever vinyl pressing. The band is comprised of Karina Gill (Cindy) and Michael Ramos (Tony Jay) and together, they’re dropping breadcrumbs all the way back to the early days of K Records and Flying Nun. Guitars twist and turn around the steady percussive element; it sounds at times as if the band’s finding their footing together in the a live space for the first time…giving that lo-fi aesthetic that can’t be faked. My favorite moment, in a very weird strong Nathan only way actually comes at 1:25-1:43; its this guitar interlude that has these perfect tones that sort of breathe air into the vocal duet, giving more charm than one man can handle. The LP will be released on April 23rd!

McDead Releases Self-Titled LP

Over the last month or so, I’ve been getting several McDead tunes sent my way, which is great, as I feel like the project is really onto something special. I chose one of the song’s from the just released McDead LP to sort of illustrate the craft in the songwriting. This sort of begins as this sort of swaggering slow burn of psychedelia, but soon turns into this hazy swirl of noisy experimentation, layering texture upon texture to fill your speakers with this sonic haze. For all the casual pop we cover from Australia, nice to hear someone working with a fresh perspective down under. If you dig, be sure to check out the full self-titled LP!

Nah Share Finger on the Map

Nah… have been on our minds since we first heard their Summer’s Falling EP in 2018, and while we’ve been waiting for a full LP, they’ve dropped in a single here and then to keep our eyes (and ears) on the prize. Their debut self-titled LP is a week or so away, so we’re happily sharing another single to encourage your purchase. For an indiepop band, they sure offered a nice twist on the opening here, giving us more of an almost classic rock chug bouncing back in forth in our speakers. When Sebastian enters with his curled croon, the song softens up a little bit, though there’s still some heavy-handed riffs hanging back there; I just loved the energy this song pushed forward from the start. All that said, the group does start to see-saw back towards the purely indiepop side of things around the 2 minute mark with Estella Rose poking her voice into the fray. Once there, the song bursts into this euphoric dream state of swirling melodies and squawking horns, riding the song to an emphatic close that’s both catchy and boisterous. Nah drops on September 23rd via Shelflife.

That New Young Scum Single

One of my favorite LPs of the last few years is the self-titled Young Scum LP. The band have been mostly quiet since its release, at least musically speaking…until this last week when they dropped a brand new single. Indiepop fans will fawn, particularly with the natural hop that goes along throughout the song; it’s part rhythmically propelled and part of the circular jangle of the guitars. There’s comfort in the warmth of the vocals too, which seems particularly important in the world today; I just wanted to get wrapped up in this song, and hope you do too. As of now, it’s just a single, but a reason to celebrate nonetheless.

Stream the Self-Titled LP from The Late Pioneers

It’s incredibly hard to keep track of all the great music being released nowadays, so hopefully you come here for a little guidance to narrow down your choices. One of the record I’ve been bopping to is the new self-titled LP from The Late Pioneers, which was just released by Subjangle. Ultimately, this is a brilliant pop record, culling influences from various periods of pop music, be that classic singles or the more recent jangling styles of indiepop. Many of the tracks offer this wondrous sense of promise in the world, like “Into the Mud,” but you will also encounter some more reflective pieces to keep the listen balanced. I think my favorite tune is “Leaving Today,” but start where you want and fall in love with this LP.

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