A great deal of my childhood was spent listening to my father’s folk collection, and perhaps that, more than any other memory, will be our legacy. I mention this as Esther Edquist aka Sweet Whirl seems steeped in the rich history of folk music; her powerful voice has this faint quiver in it, something that reminds me of Harris or Baez. The track’s arrangement definitely aid to the songs depth, though those bits seem careful to stay out of the way when necessary. It’s a striking voice, and, for me, a striking introduction to the newest Australian export to land on Chapter Music; the label will release Love Songs & Poetry on May 3rd.
You know that you’re coming to SXSW to find something new, so why not pencil in Atlanta’s Shepherds? They’ve got a forthcoming LP later this year, and they’re self affirmed Sade fans, so you can’t really go wrong winding up at one of their sets. Don’t believe me? Well, read more about them below!
Okay, so it’s not exactly a clear-cut ballad, but in the grand concept of things, Laura Stevenson‘s new track is a striking ballad. While we’ve heard her with backing bands or playing in other bands, her new album The Big Freeze represents the full experience of Laura operating with little more than her voice and guitar. You can hear the grumbling of her guitar ring out, accenting the rise of her voice. But, once it fades, there’s guitar bits to walk you into the track’s next section where Stevenson reappears with her voice. This track is all about that voice and how it plays into space, almost isolated…which is one of the various themes in this track. Look for the new album on March 29th via Don Giovanni Records.
Just last week we shared the new track from Mamalarky, who have some roots here in our hometown…so we reached out to Livvy to see if she could answer our questionnaire, and she graced us with the kindness to respond. We’ve also included the band’s tour dates during SXSW at the end of the interview.
If you didn’t listen to Years, then I don’t know what rock you were living under, but you missed one of the great albums of 2018. And, Sun June aren’t slowing down, returning today with a new single off their forthcoming digital EP. Just a few seconds in and you’ll hear the organic beauty of the five-piece, texturing the track with just enough rhythm and soul to let the vocals stand out on their own. I love the cascade towards the end around the 2 minute mark. Oh! And did you know the band are playing the ATH vs SOTO show on Sunday, March 10th? Well, they are. This single appears on the digital EP out at the end of March, and accompanied with the 2nd press of Years via Keeled Scales.
The ringing guitars that open this new track from FACS don’t really paint the song’s full picture; they almost seem bright and chiming. That feeling is fleeting, as the ominous vocals quickly haunt the track for the following two minutes, all the while, gurgles pop up from beneath the song’s surface. From there on out the song churns and buzzes it’s way through cavernous spaces, creating an anxiousness that ebbs and flows throughout the song’s remaining minutes. A song that moves from dark pop to industrial experimenting? Yep…you’ll love it. Lifelike will debut on March 29th via Trouble In Mind Records.
When you come to SXSW you never know what you’re going to stumble into, but 9/10, its going to be something with a lot of buzz. In the case of Rosie Tucker, the buzz is deserved, with songs to support the current hype. They will be releasing Never Not Never Not Never Not this Friday via New Professor. Read on for questionnaire responses, as well as a list of SXSW shows.
It’s been a hot minute since I’ve really dug deep on a folk ballad, but this track from Ohtis is pretty powerful, both musically and lyrically. The song seems to come from Sam’s experience with drug use and trying to explain a reason why we’re all here, or why some of us survive and some of us don’t. As for the track, it’s real bare-bones, and in fact, Sam recorded the vocals on a handheld recorder before having the band flesh it all out in the studio. Curve of Earth will be out on March 29th via Full Time Hobby.
Last November, we got a new single from Pool Holograph, and it looks like now we’ll be getting another new tune via a new split with Courtesy. At first, the song runs its first thirty seconds like modern guitar pop; the chords are bright and sharp, with breathy vocals crawling atop. But, it’s their turn towards discord that gives the song a grittier punch; the song has this internal stomp as the band crashes and thrashes about just after the 2 minute mark. It’s both strikingly beautiful and brooding, with the perfect mix of pop sensibility. Impressive work yet again; Land and Sea Dept will release the split in June!
If you’ve read these pages, you’ve likely heard me compare Herzog to the American version of Sloan. It’s a certified fact; they’re incapable of writing a bad song. But, with that said, they might not be on your radar…such is the fate of the greats. So, get to know them below and hunt them down at SXSW.