We’re just a month or so away from the new Monnone Alone LP, so you’ve got to dip your toes into the warm water in Mark’s pool of pop. This new single quickly slides into this huge ringing chords, meant for arena rock status, but brought back to Earth by the softened jangling style of Monnone’s guitar play. While I love that big sound, bordering on crunchy power pop, I think I’m in love with the vocals on this tune; they kind of hang out there on a laundry wire of pop, blowing in the wind, occasionally gusting with these delighting notes that rise and fall so effortlessly. And if that wasn’t enough, how about the song’s fade out, just budding with infectious pop bravado. Stay Foggy will be released on September 3rd via all the usual pop purveyors: Lost and Lonesome/Meritorio/Emo Response/Royal Mint.
It doesn’t seem like Summer of the Mosquito was released almost 2 years ago! Alas, Mark Monnone, formerly of the Lucksmiths, is at it again with a brand new 7″ under his Monnone Alone moniker, and hinting at an LP later in the year! Feuding guitar sounds open the tune, one bringing in fuzzy edges and the other a light-hearted beach stomp, giving off this sort of bewildering pop sensibility. And, while I love the steadfast pop quality, I think the true winner here is Mark’s vocal performance; he doesn’t seem to miss a note, almost as if he’s singing at some beachside lounge resort, making all the kids scream and swing about as they spill their Mai-Tais in the sand. You want to take a bite out of some truly great pop music? Then give this one about 12-13 spins; I know I certainly have. Like the Beach Boys, but honestly, better. The 7″ is out at the end of March via Lost and Lonesome/Emotional Response/Meritorio/Royal Mint. Here I go skipping down the hallways of our school screaming and bouncing “I’m going to lose my mind!”
What?! The Lucksmiths are sharing a new video? Didn’t that band call it quits in 2009!? Well, yes, but they’re putting out their very incredible Naturaliste on vinyl for the very first time since its 2003 release. The video takes a bunch of old video footage and compiles it into one giant story of nostalgic warmth; the band seem carefree and frivolous throughout, which is probably the way we’d all love to be remembered. I feel like the song speaks for itself, as the gentle shuffle of the guitar sound is something that’s filled my own record collection; they were one of the most consistent joys in music for so long. If you’re a fan or just getting turned onto it, the band will release Naturaliste this Friday.
In quiet circles around the Internet, folks are on the edge of their seats waiting to hear the new Monnone Alone LP; the former Lucksmiths guitarist is held in high regard, and Summer of the Mosquito largely lives up to those expectations. The record is fill with mostly sunny numbers, apt for an LP with such a title…though you might find a melancholy tune hanging about. Regardless…people will fawn over this for some time, so I wanted you to be one of the first to hear it all the way through. Stream it or Buy it from these folks: Lost and Lonesome (Australia), Meritorio (Spain), Emotional Response (US), and Royal Mint (Finland). For an added bonus…you can click after the jump and read my thoughts on each track!
We alluded yesterday to new music from Monnone Alone, the latest project of Mark Monnone of Lucksmiths fame; today we have one of those new tracks to share with you. Surprisingly, it’s a pretty rocking number, almost like a barroom brawl with fuzzy guitar chords. But, it is Mark Monnone, so he’s going to spin everything he does with the best pop sensibility around. Just listen to the breakdown around 1:22 mark, building this swelling roll of poppy guitars that bring the song right back home to a sense of exuberance that seeps through your speakers. This track appears on the very limited lathe-cut 7″ being released by Emotional Response/Lost and Lonesome/Meritorio on February 22nd.
Mark Monnone penned albums take up a great deal of space in my personal collection, so as he ventures out on his own again under the name Monnone Alone it seems like the only appropriate way to end a Friday. Whether or not you fawned over the Lucksmiths, I think any fan of pop music would have a difficult time turning their ear away from these two gems. The A-side on this new 7″ definitely has its way with melody, though the volume is quite forceful, allowing the rock n’ roll underbelly to surge through your walls. On the B-side you get more of a playful charm, a touch more light-hearted, though equally as emotively striking. Luckily, these two tracks come with a promise of a new LP in 2019.
Yes! Today you indipoppers will rejoice in the 20th Anniversary of Matinee Recordings…and with that, they’re also bringing you a brand new compilation…including some new tunes from our favorites like The Electric Pop Group. Plus, the comp also features a gem of a tune from Last Leaves, the new group formed by ex-Lucksmiths Marty Donald. Swinging guitar licks, steady beats and soaring harmonies are sure to abound when the Matinee Idols comp is released into the world on June 23rd. I’d write about the songs, but the label has tossed up a sample (including the two tracks I just mentioned), so stream and adore.
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This word doesn’t get thrown around so much in relation to Tangible Excitement, but my record collection is definitely calling these guys a supergroup: 1/4 Summer Cats, 1/4 Boyracer and 1/2 Lucksmiths. Need I say more? Indiepop fans are already clamoring to get their hands on this ridiculously fun release. I like the upbeat jam, “Puzzle Pieces;” it’s the best jangling pop tune you might not have heard yet…feel that groove. For those of you not familiar with the participating acts, just spend about 12 minutes indulging in the delightful pop waiting at the click of a button. Then, be a good human, and go grab the 7″ from Emotional Response!
If you read the pages of this site from time to time, you’ve surely come across my adoration for Matinee Recordings and all the work the small label has been able to release. From the Lucksmiths to Bubblegum Lemonade…and so many more, they’ve continued to provide indiepop fans with a growing catalog of hit after hit after hit. The label celebrates their 15th Year this month by releasing A Sunday Matinee CD, which includes rare songs, unreleased tracks and covers (including Lucksmiths covering Jonathan Richman). It’s a great accomplishment to run a label successfully for so long, so join me in celebrating the label (and ordering the CD). You can stream the entire thing below.
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It wasn’t too long ago that Being There released their debut record, but several spins into Breaking Away and you’ll see the growth in the London four piece. The guitar playing is tighter, and the recording maximizes the pop sensibility of the group. If you’re in need of a good pop rock record, then your best bet for 2013 is to begin here.
“Allen Ginsberg” gently begins things, with nothing more than the quieted vocal and a gliding guitar track. While it’s the first track on the album, it’s also one of those that dictates the sincerity of the group. But, they’re not eager to lay down an album’s worth of mellow pop tunes, jumping immediately into “Back to the Future.” For me, the drumming wins out on this track, providing the backbone for the guitars to dig their way into your auditory heart. Slight bits of twang during the chorus serve to bring the melody back into focus.
While I definitely appreciate the presence of upbeat numbers on Breaking Away, there’s a soft spot for the mellower tunes, like “Infinity.” The ringing guitars accompanied by acoustic strumming are reminiscent of some of my favorite tracks by The Lucksmiths, so it’s easy to see why I gravitate towards such moments. Perhaps their brightest moments though come when they combine both elements, such as Being There does on the six-minute killer, “Silent Runner.” You’ll hear a jingling tambourine steadying the track, with a nice melody warmly sung atop it all, but they play with the tension levels too. There are bits of atmospheric guitar noise that swells midway through, making it more than just an average pop ballad.
Hints of a modern indie pop-gaze influence appear in songs like “Tomorrow” or “The Radio,” but I suggest you hold up to one of the more special songs that awaits near the end. “17” is perhaps the hidden gem that many people with attention disorders might skip, due to its late presence. I like the tonal changes in the mix for the vocals, but I also appreciate the steady pacing of the drums that work together with cascading guitar chords. It’s a special moment that I’ve continuously played outside of my review purposes.
All in all, Being There have done an exceptional job of upping the ante from their first effort. Sure, there are some derivative pieces here, but the overall feeling of the record more than makes up for that. There’s enough mixture in the placement of songs to dictate repeated pleasure for listens all the way through, yet there’s also stand-out tracks that you can include in your mixes for friends. Breaking Away is your chance to enjoy the simple pleasure of good pop music, and hopefully go on and share it with the world.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/The-Radio.mp3]
Download:Being There – The Radio [MP3]