There’s something about slow-jam synth pop that really makes me a sucker; I just drink it up and press play over and over again, much as I’ve done with this new Eli Raybon tune. I enjoy the way he slowly releases his vocal notes, almost as if they’re being drawn out against his will; it creates this seductive vibe that brings you deeper into the song itself. For now, this tune is a one-ff single, as Eli has just recently released his Green EP, so enjoy this jam, then go back in time and listen to his other tracks…you won’t wanna miss em’.
Often times the synth pop genre is left for other members of the ATH staff, but today I’ve taken a liking to this new single from Joshua Tree based Chelan. “Wont Break” is a heavy synth song which manages to blend the best parts of Beach House with the heavier electronic sounds of Cold Cave. I promise you will find tons to like about this new single and I suggest you check it out.
Vultures will hit streets on August 26th.
Telephantom is one of the rising stars of Houston’s music scene, and we got turned onto the band via the participation of Nick, who plays drums in Young Girls. The group just uploaded three new tracks, all danceable pop music geared at pure listener enjoyment. They specialize in spinning bright harmonies around the trading of male/female vocals, emphatically aided by deep synthesized beats. I have a feeling you’re going to want to turn these tracks up loud, then just let yourself go while you try to wake the downstairs neighbor with your carefree dance stylings.
Austinites who pay attention to the local music scene will definitely recognize the name John Hetherington and his work with Austin band Knifight. Well maybe you don’t all know his name, but you’ve certainly heard of the band right? Right!? #supportlocalbands
Brand new act, Square Paradise, is John’s new project completely solo and away from his previously mentioned group. John tells me that he plans on releasing at least one new song a month “for the foreseeable future” as he records more and more music by himself in his home studio. Today you can find what is sure to be the first of many new singles below called “Ten Numbers”. This is pop music at its finest folks. I’m really looking forward to what else John has in store.
John Jagos and his project known as Brothertiger has picked up some positive praise on ATH over the years, and I’ve grown to admire the music despite my typical avoidance of the electronic genre. My admiration grows even more today with this enchanting new track “Out of Touch”. I’m fascinated with the way Jagos can create a beautiful pop song here, and though it might be labeled synth or electronic, it’s truly just a great pop song. Enjoy.
You can pick up Out of Touch on December 4th.
It wasn’t too long ago that Talking Bush released their latest EP for Shelflife, but the band is wasting no time on the turnaround, readying a brand new tune for your ears. There’s a chilled out vibe to this one, and I can imagine folks who love the 80s dance pop fawning here. But, even with that nod, I still like some of the vocal inflections; they really sell me on the song as a whole, even if they’re only there for a syllable or too. Give yourself some time with this track, then thank me later.
I don’t think I’ve quite tired of hearing new music from John Pena’s project, Heavenly Beat. It always fulfills my listening needs, providing bits of pop elements entranced by dancefloor-ready grooves. Interestingly, Pena doesn’t have the same household name as others of his ilk, which seems strange as I think his layering is often far better than his peers. Anyways, he’s got a new record titled Designer that he’s self-releasing later this year; you’ll also be able to catch him out on the road with other synth-pop purveyor, Teen Daze (including a September date here in Austin).
Looking to kick off your Tuesday with some frivolous synth pop tunes? Well, listen up, you’re not going to find a better one out there today than Most People‘s newest single. The Toronto duo have crafted this tune, clearly intent on pushing you to the dance floor; they even pause for a touch of respite in the middle of the tune so you can run to the bar and grab a drink. You’ll have a hard time denying the hooks here, and who would want to, after all. Sometimes you just wanna say fuckall and go have some fun…this is the tune that leads you there.
There hasn’t been a synth-pop band in the last ten or so years that really stuck with me quite like Soviet has. Ever since I first caught them at SXSW back in 2003, they’ve made it on to many a mixtape and “DJ” set. It’s been so long, I had no idea they were even still working together, but it looks like Burger Records has their hands on a brand new album from the group. There’s really not too much to say, other than this might be one of the most-overlooked dream-pop acts that’s been birthed in the last couple of decades (just one man’s opinion). I can’t wait to hear all of Ghosts when it’s released this week!
When front men, or women, step aside from their group efforts to strike out on their own, I always fear that the effort will be, well, too self-indulgent. Geoffrey O’Connor, of the Crayon Fields, created a record of his own back in 2011, when he broke out a bit from his guitar and moved into the synth pop side of things. Fan Fiction is another trip into the world of danceable beats and narratives that take place or belong in a nightclub.
Nightclub beats may be one thing, but it’s a whole different animal to be able to go back and forth from dance floor to the other parts of your life. While we all like to shake it, I have to have a little bit of substance to accompany my dance tunes and set them apart from all the rest. The general sound on Fan Fiction is interesting—something along the lines of a mix between Cut Copy and the vocal quality reminiscent of Owen Pallett. It’s synth dance pop with 80’s flair; the presence of the electric guitar through the whole thing adds a neat little element that sets it apart from other takes on this genre. However, there really isn’t a whole lot of variety from track to track that add up to something other than a collection of songs that all sound somewhat similar to each other.
Though my main issue with this album is its lone dimension, there are still some pretty fun tracks that you can groove to. Take “Jacqueline” and “Another Time,” for two great examples of this—both of these tunes are dance floor ready. “Jacqueline,” kicks open with some drum machine, synth riffs and what sounds like a hint of crisp guitar riffs. The beat pumps through the song, and the lead vocals take on a quality that resembles the pulsating electronic sounds as he wonders after the title character now that he knows nothing about her. While the song doesn’t really build to anything in the end, it’s no doubt catchy and will have you lamenting “Jacqueline” along with O’Connor and the feminine vocals that join him for the choral hook. Similar in interest is “Another Time,” where the rhythm is picked up and the lyrics twist around in little endless loops of tongue twisters while instrumentation sounds like scattering fragments of synth that go on forever in the background.
Overall though these few really detailed and stick out tracks weren’t enough to pull me into the rest of the album. I was left feeling a little bored with Fan Fiction and longing for a little more substance.