RayRay and I are both huge Centromatic fans, and thus, we’ve closely followed the career of Will Johnson through his various twists and turns. Currently, he’s working under his own name, with a new LP scheduled to drop this fall on Keeled Scales. On this new track, there’s a lot of space in the track, allowing for the delicate flourishes Johnson has seen fill his various projects, be it the tinkering piano or distant-sounding strings. It’s perfect when considering Will’s smoky voice, making room for his vocals to softly churn and roll through the song as he sees fit; he also gets some nice vocal accompaniment at points to add depth to his work. Wire Mountain will drop on September 27th.
When I pressed play on the latest single from Deadbeat Beat, I was digging on the indifferent vocal delivery; it reminded my of various acts I love like Dumb or the Zoltars. But, what sold me on the band’s sound was the very slightest touch, but opened up the song to the brand of pop sensibility I adore; you’re right, it is the “do do do” backing vocal. What can I say? You brandish a hook, and I’m a pretty eager fish to catch onto. Aside from the vocals there’s this scuzzy shuffling guitar line that occasionally rings out discordantly amidst some tight cymbal work. The group release How Far on August 2nd via Arrowhawk and Crystal Palace.
You stumble across a casual pop song that bores into your consciousness and it’s likely the tune hails from Australia, or even more specific, Melbourne since we’re talking about Low Key Crush. It seems the band takes their name super-seriously, giving us this mellow burner build on this wondrous melody. There’s some understated swagger in the sounds of the guitar, but you’ll need a real close ear to get in there. I like the distant feel of the vocals, as if singer Tim Haines is resigned to just toss the words out on the line, hoping someone, somewhere, finds them. We found them Tim, and we’re so grateful we did!
Tim Chaplin keeps throwing out the hits, and I keep writing them up, or at least that’s how I see it. On his latest tune, it has this solemn strut to it, with the rhythm section setting a soft march while the guitar does a gentle jangle for the listener. This round, the vocals have this sort of distorted coating, like Tim’s chatting to us through some barely audible radio wave. I appreciate the fact that he builds the tension, but never actually unleashes it on the listener…a little restraint goes a long way. This tune appears on Almost Made it Through the Rock n’ Roll Death Age, Chaplin’s newest LP.
Glenn Donaldson’s name should be familiar to folks at this point, but I’ll admit that I was completely unaware that the Reds, Pinks and Purples LP was on its way; I should have known due to all the demos and such up this year. Regardless, Anxiety Art is here, and we get to hear two of the tracks below. The first tune has this gentleness, this soft edge to the vocals that sits coolly betwixt the two guitar lines as the percussion gives just a hint of a bounce. In the latter tune, there’s this feeling of yearning for some reason; the style seems similar to the first, though just a few of the syllables seem to be out in the world searching for something. Just feel like these two songs along are a gift that will give back to me all weekend long; the full LP will be out soon via Pretty Olivia Records.
If I told you where Ducks Unlimited hailed from, you wouldn’t believe me, so I’ll leave you guessing. But, you’re going to immediately fall in love with this song, especially if you’re a fan of acts like the Go-Betweens or RBCF; they operate with that similar approach, melding hook-laden melodic guitars and these casually indifferent vocal lines. I loved the emphatic punch of the chorus, but I was pleasantly surprised when the string arrangement entered the picture right around the 2 minute mark, adding another textural moment, just upping those comparisons to the GBs. This track will appear on a brand new EP slated for a Fall release.
A few months ago we got a great new single from The Royal Landscaping Society; it was just two quick tunes, barely enough to satiate pop fans. But, and I’m only guessing here, the Spanish duo have popped out another forthcoming single, or maybe even an album…as there’s not much news from their label Matinee Recordings, other than, of course, uploading this track to the Internet. It’s got a nice electronic pulse beneath, offset by these lighter keyboard notes, building a dense cavern of catchy pop music from which the vocals emanate to wash over the listener. I’m on board with anything this bunch does, so I’ll keep you posted as I hear more about this release.
Two things that Special Friendhave going for them at the moment…1) they reference a mix of Yo La Tengo/the Pastels in their sound 2) they hail from the same scene that’s given us recent faves like En Attendant Ana and Marble Arch. I mean, that would be enough, usually, but they’ve also go the songwriting chops to back that up. I love the casual quality of the guitars, sharp chords ringing brightly before quieted picking comes in. They also meld their vocals perfectly, with huge shared melodies that should warm any fan of good pop music. They’ll be releasing their new EP on September 27th via Howlin Banana Records!
I’m an avid Cloudberry Records follower, so it’s nice to see the label pick up a band I’ve already been in love with, Dayflower. The label just announced this new 7″, which includes a different version of 2017 standout “Sweet Georgia Gazes,” as well as the B-side “Daisy Age.” This revisited version below might be the first time some of you hear it, but for those familiar with the band, this run has more of a punch to it than the previous version. That said, even with the energy uptick, it doesn’t lose its charm, particularly when the chorus comes in to twirl you about in its arms. The 7″ should be out later this Fall.
The first 30 seconds of this new tune from Marcos y Molduras lured me in; it was a quiet affair, working vocals over a simple guitar line with just a hint of buzz to it. Then, the track blasted off into this ecstatic burst of bouncing pop music; I think it fits in line with everything I love about the current stream of guitar pop/pop punk coming out…only its done in Spanish. Still, that guitar settles back into the quiet mode, only to return to its more forceful manner to keep the song, and you, bounding down the hallways towards the exit. Something fun for your work week from Discos de Kirlian!