I’m a sucker for a female singer, especially one who can carefully craft a pop ditty with ease. This is much the case with San Francisco’s Anna Hillburg who just released her self-titled album on California Clap Records. “Wine In a Tea Cup” is a pretty simple track here, pushed forth by a quiet drum track and some keyboard-ish accompaniment. She’s joined at times during the chorus by the perfectly placed backing vocal; all of this works together to make a joyous little number that you can definitely spin over and over again. Girl power!
It’s definitely the year for heavier-handed rock n’ roll to break back through into the mindset of indie fans everywhere. There’s Milk Music and Metz, but now you can enjoy Odonis Odonis. The group releases their Better EP on April 16th via Buzz Records, before they blast off on a tour that includes a date at Austin Psych Fest. This song has a swirling guitar part that’s emphasized by some industrial drumming; the lyrics don’t come across as heavy at first, but they’ll blast off to match the pace of the track. Just another reason to turn up your speakers this year!
It’s good to diversify your tastes, so I have no qualms with posting this new jam from Kingsley Flood, one of the hottest acts around Boston at the moment. There sound blends elements of raucous bar tunes with punk rock stomps, touched off nicely with bits of horns/violins/keyboard. It’s an eclectic sound for sure, but one that’s definitely captured my attention. You can hear this track, along with other equally mesmerizing tunes (like “The Fire Inside”) on the band’s new album, Battles. If they’re making songs as good as these, it won’t be long before they break out of Boston and move on to greener pastures.
We’re getting close to the Austin Psych Fest, and with that we’ve got news regarding one of the great acts that will be making their way into town: The Laurels. You know how we love Australia, so it’s only fitting that we spread some love on this Sydney group; they’ll be releasing their new album, Plains, on April 16th. You’ll find the new single here quite a gem; it has a quality that walks the fine line between psych rock and regulation pop music. The vocals seem to float away, there’s some fuzzy guitar playing, but the rhythm section is solid through and through, especially the drumming. Now’s the time to start getting ready for Psych Fest folks.
I honestly have no idea what to expect when Goosebumps, the debut from Heavy Hawaii comes out in stores in a few weeks. Their first single, which we showed a few weeks ago was warmly draped in bright guitars, but this time around, that seems to be the last thing on the group’s mind. Instead, they’ve got this odd pop plodder, that opens with playful circus-esque sounds…they pop in and out of the track. It definitely serves as an interesting approach, though the group continues to use their same vocal approach. It may be different, but it’s just as good, if not better, as their first single.
We’ve written about GRMLN before, but I’m even more excited about the band after hearing this latest track. It’s a lot more upbeat and in your face, with an edgy guitar kicking off right from the start. The vocals have this bit of power-pop delivery while the drums pound in the background; there’s even a riotous breakdown at the end of the tune. If you’re in need of a record you can just blast as the wind blows your hair back, then you’re going to want to get your hands on Empire when it is released by Carpark Records on June 4th.
I first discovered the work of White Woods when The Coathangers announced that their singer Julia would be doing a little side project. I loved the first 7″ that came out, and this new one is even more beautiful, demonstrating how far she can step away from her garage rock mainstay. It’s such a peaceful track, with Julia’s voice carefully laid atop the quiet instrumentation. If you’re familiar with her main project, you’ll be amazed at such a stark contrast. The new 7″ is up for pre-order now from Suicide Squeeze Records.
I don’t think anyone in the world works as hard as Sonny Smith, except for maybe Ty Segall. It seems like Sonny always has something in the works, be it his solo work or his band Sonny & the Sunsets. He just released a new single that will be featured on his upcoming effort with his band; the record is called Antenna to the Afterworld and will be released by Polyvinyl Records on June 11th. Interestingly, this song has less of a folk feel, changing it for that current Cali guitar sound that you find in many of the modern acts from the state (many of whom Sonny has worked with). I’m interested to see how the whole record comes together, especially if he’s mixing things up.
We were happy to help our friends over at Loglady Records toss a rad party at Trailer Space during SXSW, so in exchange, they gave us this gem of a record from Legs. I’ve got news for you folks, this is going to be your Spring party album. Listening to their first single, it’s got an interesting angle…at first it just seems like a gentle ballad, but the ringing guitar and pounding rhythm section propel it from average jam to certifiable hit. Today is one of those days where things just fit in perfectly. You can expect big things from the band when Pass the Ringo comes out from Loglady on April 23rd.
This song surfaced last week, but I was actually out catching the band at hand. They played a tight little set swirling with noise and wonderful melodies. Now that I’m back in the world, I feel like Teen‘s new song needs some attention, as it was one of the hits they played during their set. Interestingly, I felt like it was a bit noisier live, but I like the group holding back here, allowing for the powerful songwriting to make it’s way through. The group has their new Carolina EP coming out your way on May 28th via Carpark Records. This is someone you should give some attention to in the upcoming weeks.