Just in case you haven’t heeded my previous warning, you’re going to want to get to know Xetas this year, if they’re not already on your rock n’ roll radar. They’ve got a new video from their forthcoming The Cypher, and I’m freaking in love with this jam. It opens interestingly, with these jagged chords kind of building this nervous tension; it’s juxtaposed by the calm delivery of Kana’s voice, which quickly turns into an explosive howl as the band meets for the chorus. I think my favorite moment comes around the 2:03 mark with the line “have you ever watched the mountain range, change.” The full album is out next Friday via 12XU.
Accessory is the solo project of Jason Balla, who typically is found playing in Dehd, but they’re working on their sophomore LP, so Jason opted to go and record some work on his own. This tune’s got a heavy feel, primarily through the tones of Jason’s voice. That said, the thematic element of finding that “the world can be beautiful and good” shines right through the track; you can even hear it ever so slightly in Balla’s voice as the song begins to progress. No word on whether the project has long term goals, but as a fan of Dehd, and the band’s label Fire Talk, felt like it was my duty to share this with you!
It feels early in the week to really need a burst of energy, but so be it, I need a good pop rock tune! Luckily, there’s this new tune from Dallas’ outfit, CLIFFFS, which features John Dufilho of Deathray Davies. It’s exactly what you’d expect from one of Dufilho’s project, though this one definitely feels like it’s got some arena rock lineage. The riffs are huge and the chorus can be screamed at full blast; the song itself, even has a harsh little backing vocal to keep the rock n’ roll edge alive here. The group will release their sophomore LP Panic Attack via State Fair Records next month.
I’m totally in love with this brand new track from Pet Shimmers, the UK act who’ve just announced their debut Face Down in Meta. The song began almost immediately, and I was hooked right there. At first, it sort of sounded like a fuzzy indiepop song, which, of course, had my interest. But, as the song unfolded, the fuzz layer began to feel more like a gloss that coated the song, akin to something you’d hear on a Radio Dept. LP. So there it is, imagine a youthful vibrancy spun through the lens of cloudy pop purveyors and you’ve got exactly what you’ve been looking for all your life. Face Down in Meta will be out on January 31st.
In what seems like Christmas all over, the last several days have given me new music from Rosie Tucker…and now Flying Fish Cove. At Moonset was one of the great indiepop gems of last year, followed quickly by the En Garde EP, so being back at it again only means we’ve got more great music for our ears. A buzzy entry and light churning jangle open the scene with Dena’s voice soon joining; it rises up and down on the natural melody of the tune, warming you with its pop sensibility. Perhaps my favorite part of the tune comes in the middle where it’s just sparkling electronic notes and the strum of the guitar…a special moment for sure. The band pair this new single with a cover of Heavenly‘s “Shallow” off the excellent Heavnly vs Satan LP (1991), which you can find below the video.
It’s seems strange to me that we cover so much music from Canada, yet our closest neighbor (here in Texas at least) gets minimal coverage. But, thanks to Devil in the Woods returning, I’ve been turned on to some great tunes, like this new single from Mexico City’s MUUK. It’s an instrumental number that works with sort of four distinct movements. At first, you get sort of a lost radio message, something that seems to hiss at you from the past. Then the song drops in, guitars sharpening themselves over ambient noises, building on the pulse of electronics. We venture into a soft respite with a meandering guitar chord sort of skittering about while the percussive element and soundbites intoxicate the listener. It all crashes down emphatically with the heavier hand coming in the song’s final quarter, releasing all the song’s earlier tension in one final closing moment.
When I first pressed play on Lennox, I was immediately hooked by the style of “Wasterr;” it has this sort of matter-of-fact delivery fused with a sort of DIY call-and-response. It’s just the sort of thing you’ll get when you listen through the entirety of the new LP from Jungle Breed. To me, you get this sort of realm that mashes up with ethos of Beat Happening with the modern feel of the Australian scene; “Soup” is the perfect example of what I’m talking about if you were curious. Multiple listens through, and personally, I’m super partial to “Routine,” particularly the chorus of said tune. If you’re digging it, the whole LP is now available courtesy of the folks over at Roolette Records.
If you pay attention to this little blog here, you would have heard me raving about Rosie Tucker‘s Never Not Never Not Never Not, so a new song in 2019 is very much welcome. This new track is a perfect pop experiment in brevity; it feels like it packs your average song into a quick 1:38. It opens up with a seemingly muted guitar and Rosie Tucker delivering their vocals, almost hopping on syllables between the various riffs. Then the song the song erupts on the line “you don’t even eat me out,” bursting forth with the insatiable pop nugget that was visible throughout last year’s LP; it’s these simple little hooks that always keep me coming back to their songs time and time again. No word yet on a new LP, but this is the second new single we’ve heard, so let’s hope they’ve got something big on the horizon.
Our friend Mike Turner works hard running HHBTM Records, as well as Crashing Through Publicity. I reached out to him, as I did with many friends, asking him for his own curated list for Best of 2019. We thought it’d be fun to pair his love of BMX with music from 2019…so, looking back, here we are.
Sometimes I think to myself that they just don’t ever make pop music like they used to, and then I’m hit with a song like this new one from Honey Cutt. The song jangles in all the right spots, with spot on bounce provided by the rhythm section. I love how there are two guitar lines, seemingly giving you two different approaches…one jangling and giving energy, while the other seems far more intent on wandering off, much like the song’s theme. It doesn’t hurt that Kaley Honeycutt has the most mesmerizing voice, the sort that sets indiepop hearts a flutter, sort of rising and falling in between notes. This is going to be one hell of a debut LP; Coasting is out March 13th via Kanine Records.