New Tunes from Restless People

I first heard about Restless People because I’ve been following the spin-offs of Professor Murder, mostly because my old lady really digs that band.  The band released a single today, “Don’t Back Down,” (via P4K).  While it does have a whole lot of electronic touches, which I’m trying to ween myself off of this year, you can still find some knifing vocals, a la the Drums, but with a little less surf to them.  Okay, so its sort of just a trendy little dance number, but damn if it ain’t catchy.  You’ll find it on the band’s self-titled debut, which hits the streets on September 14th.


Download: Restless People – Don’t Back Down [MP3]

New Music From We Landed On The Moon!

It has been quite some time since we last posted on Baton Rouge quintet We Landed on the Moon! Not much has been heard of the group since we mentioned them over a year and a half ago.  Now the band is about to release a new album entitled This Will be One for the Books on October 12th.  Prior to that date, the band has 4 tracks from the new album streaming on their website.  Below you’ll find one of those songs called “Across the Sun”.


Download: We Landed on the Moon! – Across The Sun [MP3]

Titus Andronicus @ Emo’s (9/1)

Date 9/1/10
Location Emos
Doors 9pm
Tickets $12 @ Ticketweb

Well ladies and gentleman summer has come to a close and we suggest the best way to celebrate/mourn would be to heal your wounds with some solid rock music.  We think the best way to do that is to head to Emo’s on Wednesday night for indie-rock n roll band Titus Andronicus.  Joining the band on stage are two solid locals Yellow Fever and Whitman.  Also don’t forget that The Strange Boys will be getting down on the inside stage!  All in all, this show should rock from start to finish and your face will be left on the floor.


Download: Titus Andronicus – Four Score and Seven (Part Two) [MP3]

New Music From The War On Drugs

We here at ATH have been jamming this new song “Comin’ Through” from indie band The War on Drugs most of the day.  People representing the band have told us that a new album entitled Future Weather will be released on October 26th on Secretly Canadian.  Enjoy the track and head to your local record stores to pick this one up when it comes out.


Download: The War on Drugs – Comin’ Through [MP3]

Land of Talk – Cloak and Cipher

Rating: ★★★½☆

When we last checked in with Lizzie Powell, she was on the road with Broken Social Scene, playing the role of chanteuse.  Now, she’s returned with her own group, Land of Talk, offering up their latest work since 2008’s Some Are Lakes. The new album, Cloak and Cipher, shows a much more developed band, and one that lives up to the early promise of the band.

When you listen to Powell’s vocals on the majority of opener “Cloak and Cipher” she has that same jazz vocal coating that BSS utilize, but in the chorus you find a much more distinguished lady, coming off a little gentler, a little more intimate.  There’s a driving drum line, that while not the most creative, serves as the driving force behind the track.  “Goaltime Exposure” has a lot of relatives in the Canadian scene, possibly too familiar, but the moment the song is turned on its side, magic is unleashed upon the listeners.  Powell’s voice is beautiful here, and there seems to be some sort of emotional release from the music itself, only to go back into the gentle progression before erupting in joy yet again.

The progression of Land of Talk is the one surprising element that does a great benefit to show the beauty on the album, as well as the strength of the band. “Swift Coin” opens up with a nicely drenched bit of reverb atop pounding drums, then Powell enters, and the mood changes.  Soft vocals provide a different texture to this song, letting the tension build until the chorus crashes in on the listener’s ears.  It’s quite similar, minus the pop element, to “The Hate I Won’t Commit,” which has to be the noisiest song the band has recorded to date.  Swirling guitar textures and effects used on the vocals create an entirely different emotion, until the band switch the tempo on you, giving you a little musical wink before pushing off into the louder spectrum again.  Such changes provide Cloak and Cipher with a lot more variance in the listening experience, making this record ultimately more rewarding than their previous effort.

It all closes with a solemn affair, “Better and Closer.”  Guitars are used sparingly, creating a sort of wall of noise that will accompany Powell’s voice for the duration of the track.  Elizabeth’s performance really sums up her talents as they’re seen throughout the LP. It rises quietly, yet with an angelic quality; it drenches the entire record in a coat of wintery pop tones that go a long way to establish the mood within each song.  Closing out Cloak and Cipher, you can be sure that this band is now finally hitting their stride, coming together in a cohesive manner we’ve yet to see from them.  To date, this is the best collection of songs by Land of Talk, and it goes a long way to establish the group as one of the new powerhouses in Canadian pop music.


Download: Land of Talk – Swift Coin [MP3]

New Music From Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island is yet another one of those band from Brooklyn that is making waves in the indie music world.  Having been around only since the beginning of 2010, it’s surprising to find that the group actually has a decent amount of recorded material.  The band’s debut EP on their very own Disregard Records, Out at Sea, will be dropping September 21st.  Below you can check out new tune “Sung (Not Said)” that is eerily similar to earl Radiohead which has to be a good thing.  More tracks can be heard on the bandcamp website.


Download: Magnetic Island – Sung (Not Said) [MP3]

New Music from The Smiles

LA band The Smiles have just released their new Hermosa EP, and we’re trying to help spread the word about this great group of dudes.  It’s everything you want for a nice summer drive along the coast, or in our case, along the I-35 corridor.  There’s sunny melodies, quick turns in direction, and infectious bass work.  Songs this catchy deserve a little love, so here’s to you fellas, and your damned hooks!


Download: The Smiles – Cala Cola [MP3]

Ben Kweller @ Threadgill’s (8/31)

Date 8/31/10
Location Threadgill’s
Doors 8:30pm
Tickets $20 @ Frontgate

The always solid Ben Kweller has a show planned Tuesday night at the Threadgill’s south location.  It doesn’t look like any opening act is in store so it’ll be all Ben all night.  Make it out if you’ve been living under a rock for the last 10 years and haven’t seen Kweller live.


Download: Ben Kweller – Ballad of Wendy Baker [MP3]

New Tunes from Fossil Cities

Man, I wish I could find out more about this band right now.  Searching the Internet, you can’t really find much on Fossil Cities, and their myspace page seems to have vanished.  Putting that aside, their sound is absolutely great, and this track from their new Stoners EP is solving my Sunday doldrums.  At first, I fell in love with the simple guitar strumming in the background, and then I fell madly in love with the track as a whole.  Maybe you’ll feel the same as you try to gather your energy up on a Monday morning.


Download: Fossil Cities – Stoners [MP3]

Jenny and Johnny – I’m Having Fun Now

Rating: ★★★★☆

What can we expect when our favorite artists fall in love and write music together?  It didn’t work for Yoko and John, but would it work for Rilo Kiley songstress Jenny Lewis and her beau, Johnathan Rice?  Well, I’m Having Fun Now, the first album under the Jenny and Johnny moniker, really sums up the attitude of the duo, as that spirit, at least musically, embodies everything about the album.  Honestly, you’ll probably be having a lot of fun as well listening to this record.

When Johnathan Rice‘s voice kicks in on “Scissor Runner,” it’s a warm entry, and you begin to wonder when Jenny will show up.  Seconds later she greets her man with her distinguished vocals, sounding a little bit more like the Jenny Lewis of yesteryear.  Beginning at this point launches the record in the perfect direction, exhibiting a duo completely comfortable with one another, both in and out of the studio.  They even stop to incorporate some of the current California jangle pop with “My Pet Snake,” the first track that really features Jenny.  Her voice hasn’t sounded this great and confident in years, which may surprise some, as Rice helped her produce the much lauded Acid Tongue.  So far, so good.

“Big Wave” is another one of the record’s great tracks, and it’s one of those tracks that really takes you back.  Jenny sounds a lot fresher with her vocal performance, and while many love her country-fied leanings, she can still carry a solid pop tune.  It’s not the most incredibly innovative songwriting, but the casualness on display suits the duo perfectly; it’s like they were both born to write I’m Having Fun Now.  Even Johnathan sounds great when he takes the lead role, such as on tracks like “Animal.”  There’s a hint of devil-may-care in his delivery, yet there is a certain sense of confidence, perhaps from knowing his lover/best friend is by his side, as Lewis really brings her powers to the chorus here.

An edgier Jenny Lewis, who still writes her lyrics in much the same fashion as she always has, is on exhibit with songs like “Straight Edge of the Blade,” transporting listeners back to the days where she seemed so care-free.  This is perhaps the best accomplishment of Jenny and Johnny, bringing the best out in each other, supporting each other and uniting in strength. “New York Cartoon,” much like parts of “Scissor Runner,” uses vocals from both parts singing in unison.  It’s the perfect accompaniment, and you can clearly see why they’re such a match. These touches of balance and harmony lie in wait for listeners throughout the album.

In conclusion, you couldn’t really ask form more from the two songwriters here.  There’s hints of both their passion in these songs, sometimes edgy, sometimes mellow and warm.  Perhaps you won’t find the music the most innovative out there, but occasionally its those groups who clearly know each other so well that they bring the best out of one another that really hit home for us.  Jenny and Johnny have shown us just that with their organization of I’m Having Fun Now; the record shows the two having fun playing together, which leads to fun for us.  The ball is in your court Ben and Zooey.


Download: Jenny and Johnny – Scissor Runner [MP3]

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