It’s been almost a year to the day since we last heard from The Phoenix Foundation. They return this week with the Dave Fridmann (Tame Impala, MGMT) stamp of approval; he handled a lot of the production duties on the group’s most recent recording, Tom’s Lunch EP. This mini-release offers up more five songs of splendid pop goodness, with just a hint of bounce. I can definitely see Fridmann’s style imprint, but the songs had to be there in the first place, right? I bet you’ll agree.
Admittedly, Carey Mercer’s voice requires some adjustment; it’s so unique and powerful that it puts people on notice almost immediately…you either love it or you don’t. Me? I dig it. I’m excited to see what the next Frog Eyes album, Carey’s Cold Spring, will sound like in full. Interestingly, his voice is really high in the mix here, which means the focus for this track, and possibly for the album, will be on his lyrical wordplay. That’s always been something special in his writing, which is why he’s been a favorite of mine for some time. The record will be released on June 17th via Paper Bag Records. Give this a try and see if it’s to your liking.
You need something on this hump day to help give a little pep in the step? This anthemic piece of pop music from Montreal’s COOPER is going to be just the thing to do it. It’s a pretty simple song in construction and structure, but the hooks and the vocals are undeniably catchy, allowing for listeners of any sort to find themselves attached to the track. There’s no word on what else Kate Cooper is working on, but you can grab this single from Mom + Pop as we speak…then you can play it on repeat as often as you wish. Don’t deny the hook.
Admittedly, the last few years I’ve always let B.Gray cover our electronically induced pop music. But, that being said, bands like Black Marble, TRUST and now Lust for Youth have really begun to sway my opinion. This new single from the latter is the perfect example of why I’ve begun to make that switch; it’s hard for anyone to listen to this track and not get excited about the band’s up-coming record. There’s not too much dabbling in oddities, instead just a straight-forward presentation of good old synth pop. You can expect more like-minded songs when the band releases International via Sacred Bones on June 10th (that’s one busy release day!).[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/06-Armida.mp3]
Let’s face it, when you heard about the musical union of lovers, Dee Dee and Brandon (Dum Dum Girls and Crocodiles, respectively), you were a little bit skeptical right? I know that I was, but with the latest single from Haunted Hearts, I’m starting to turn my head more towards anticipation. In this episode, there’s this slight wash of psychedelia that’s draped over the band’s pop tendencies. It makes for a dreamy number that’s not really stuck too far in either direction, which is why the union definitely seems fruitful, aside from the obvious happy marriage of the two. Zoo Music will release their debut, Initiations, next Tuesday.
When I first pressed play on this track from Truthers, I fully expected it to be a slow piece that unfolded over time. But, the drums started pounding in the distance, and the track picked up a slight step, giving it this definite bounce that’s made it worthy of repeated listens today. Once it gets going, it never really lets go either, triumphantly bursting towards the end before the tape starts to bend and stretch in your speakers. This little ditty will be released by new label, Glad Tidings from New York, so give it a listen and get your hands on this limited release.
We’ve raved about the work of Alphabetical Order Orchestra, and we’re getting closer to a proper release from the group. The band has been gracious enough to let us share one of the tracks off their upcoming EP today, but we’d also like to encourage you to donate to the group so you can get your name in the liner notes (plus help with future recordings). You can do that HERE. I love the feeling of this track; it encompasses a little bit of twee, but also has a subtlety that so many people will find endearing. So many elements illustrate why I’ve adored the work of the band, from the gentle vocal delivery to the careful bits of instrumentation; it all fits so perfectly that I bet can’t but fawn over it. Enjoy for now, and we’ll keep you posted on the release of the EP.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/THE-CORRECTIONS.mp3]
I figured we’d wrap up our week (I know it’s been slow from us) with this great new tune from Marvelous Mark. He first came to my attention as part of Marvelous Darlings, which included Ben Cook of Fucked Up. This new jam has him working solo, but the music’s still got the same feel. It’s a power-pop fueled jam, holding tight to some pretty incredible melodies; it reminds me a lot of bands like Dead Stars or even Nada Surf…heavy-hitting guitars and catchy melodies. You can pick this tune up via Bad Actors on his new Flexi 7″.
Friday’s always need a bit of fun to get you through the day and into the weekend, so why not take a stroll with Toy Cities today. The Brooklyn band has created this lush lush bit of danceable pop that’s coated in synth lines and smooth vocal delivery; it’s a rather calm track until the group spins things in the pop direction during the chorus. You’re going to find yourself bobbing your head and tapping your toes as the song draws to a close, which should get you excited for the release of their debut album during the month of June.
Whispers of Naomi Punk have been growing louder over the last year or so, as the Olympia group’s popularity is spreading greatly. There’s an off-kilter guitar chug that opens up the track, leaving plenty of room for the vocals to make their entrance with a like-minded walk-along vocal. Personally, I like that the song holds steady almost throughout, rather than rush through an anthemic punk moment. We should be up for good things when the band releases their new album, Television Man, via Captured Tracks on August 5th.