• Top Songs of 2019

    Phew, the end of the year really snuck up on me this time and it’s crazy to think we are moving on from the 2010s. Before we do so, Nathan

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  • Top 25 Albums of 2019

    This is the list you’ve all been waiting for, well, sort of. This is my Top 20 LPs of the year. Admittedly, there’s none of the high profile hitmakers on

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  • Levitation 2019: A Reflection

    Team ATH has been covering Austin Psych Fest/Levitation since its early inception, probably in the second year at Radio Room (sorry we missed the first year!), so we’ve seen the

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  • ACL WE2 in a Nutshell

    Another Austin City Limits is behind us boys and girls and it’s always a good time to reflect on the music and experiences from the weekend. I considered myself very

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  • SXSW 2019 – A Recap

    Yet another SXSW is in the books and it’s time for the ATH crew to reminisce a little and offer some highlight from the week behind us. I think we’ve

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Quiet Tune from Sonny Elliot

It’s weird how your moods change hour by hour during this pandemic situation; you search for energy, you come back to find solace. One tune that’s helped me this morning is the latest single from Sonny Elliot; it’s a carefully picked guitar number, little more than the hum of the strings and the heartfelt vocals. In a way, it reminds me of Gravenhurst, particularly as the song nears the 3 minute mark and adds a quiet string accompaniment to build in some texture to close the song out. If musical escapism happens to be your thing at the moment, stop right here.

Kluster B Share Graveyard

As the Swedish outfit Kluster B ready their new LP, they’re really flexing their musical muscles, at least in regards to their songwriting. They’ve honed their indiepop skill-set, but in tightening that, they’ve built in a little bit more flare…as we see in their latest single. In between the melodious moments of dreamy pop, they get crunchy, finding expression in the noisier corners of their sound. They surround the melody in this brief crashing of instrumentation, like a distorted cocoon, before slinking back into their poppier side. B, the new album, will be out April 17th via Rama Lama Records.

Electro-Pop Number From The Sweet Serenades

I’ve been plugging away about Sweden based The Sweet Serenades for almost as long as our website has been around. During that time, the band has evolved and changed direction several times while still managing to keep me interested and engaged. Now the band has become a one man band of Martin Nordvall with founding member Mathias Nslund departing the duo in 2014. With that loss, the band has once again evolved to feature a more electronic, atmospheric sound, as evidenced by this new single “City Lights”. It’s definitely more focused on the electronic, pop side of things though still catchy and slow dance inducing just like some of the old favorites that first drew me to this band. For me, it seems like a natural progression to arrive at this more mature sound after years pumping out great music.

The Sweet Serenades just released new album City Lights last week. Orders for the album are up here.

Francis of Delirium Share Circles

Honestly, as I was reading about Francis of Delirium, I realized I hadn’t really heard of bands from Luxembourg (there’s this fun list to browse). But, this duo would likely fit into any scene anywhere in the world; it’s a blend of the introspective rock and anthemic pop that we all secretly crave. For me, there’s a nostalgic feel in the guitar notes, almost like they’re ripped straight from some classic 90s band, then dolled up for the swelling burst of euphoria that crashes down through the chorus. Jana Bahrich does brilliantly, contrasting the quiet personal moments with bold brightness; I was particularly drawn to the emphatic closing, almost angrily pushing the song to a close. It’s a pretty special introduction to the band, and should turn your attention towards their All Change EP slated for release this summer.

Candy Share Clean Video

Calum Newsom used to play with Amyl and the Sniffers, which should warrant your attention, though his sound under his Candy moniker is far different, if you ask me. This tune’s much less punk, and much more pop oriented; the bass line alone just reeks of folks looking to kick up their heels and have a blast. Honestly, there’s an understated jingle to it, which makes me think fondly of the early stuff from the Drums. It’s Monday, about to get rainy, so may as well hold onto some dreamy pop vibes before the day descends further into darkness.

Holy Wave Share Escapism

Austin’s Holy Wave have long been known for crafting these entrancing psychedelic rock tunes, but as they prepare for the release of Interloper, it seems they’ve gradually begun to grow their sound. Now, don’t think their intention to alter moods and states of mind has changed; this song still illustrates a sort of purposeful trance, though it’s being spun more through the window of dream pop. The wash of atmospherics that coats the tune creates this light fog through which you can make out audible pop moments. It’s filled with all these little musical nuances, proving that the band have gone far beyond my expectations; this seems like the band at their very finest! Interloper will be out on May 8th via Reverberation Appreciation Society.

Margin Walker Issue Show Bonds

Our friends in Margin Walker have been putting on great shows almost as long as we’ve been running this site, and we know with the quarantine, they’re all struggling. It’s hard when what you love gets put on hold, but lets put hope on the horizon. MW is doing the same, issuing Show Bonds. They’re like gift cards for shows you want to go to in the future; there will be a future! This helps out Margin Walker and all their employees, and it will also help you out too! If you’re one of our music-loving friends with a few extra dollars to spend, think about spending it on show bonds. Buy your Show Bonds HERE.

Melenas Share No Pudeo Pensar

Dias Raros comes out on May 1st, and if you’re not paying attention to Melenas right now, tienes un mes para preparar! What I’m trying to say is that the band is set to drop one of the best pop records you’re going to hear this year, I swear it. Their sound on the latest single is steeped in nostalgic pop vibes; the chords are spritely and jangly, with a steady vocal coursing through the song’s entirety. It’s like they’re the coolest thing on the Earth and don’t even care; they just throw this melody-induced jangler out there with indifference, forcing listeners to tap their toes. Don’t you want to tap your toes? If so, grab Dias Raros from Trouble in Mind Records.

STRFKR Share Budapest featuring Shy Boys

What does one do when you’ve crafted a song filled to the brim with harmonies? Well, if you’re STRFKR you call in your label mates Shy Boys and ask them to fill in some of the gaps on your new song. What we get as listeners is this relaxing, almost lounge pop vibe to seduce us into a slight foot shuffle about our bedrooms. In a way, it reminds me of a catchier version of AIR, sort of that French pop attitude, with a touch more focus on brandishing melody for melody’s sake. As of right now, STRFKR keep shuffling out super singles, so perhaps there’s more on the horizon? Keep an eye on their label Polyvinyl for more news.

Gold Cage Share Shadows and Release Social Crutch

Always a fan of the slowcore style, I’m really into this new record from Gold Cage. I love how the song just feels steady, like its serving to give you a semblance of balance amidst the turmoil of your life. Plus, I’m a sucker for those meandering guitar lines snaking their way around my ears, left and right, inside and out, dropping little melodic footnotes along the way. Besides, you get the soft curl of the vocals hanging in the front of the mix, likely to leave you with daydream scars. If you like what you hear, check out their new LP Social Crutch, out today via Felte.

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