Every time one of the new singles comes out from Geoffrey O’ Connor‘s new LP, I’m just floored. For starters, there’s this timelessness to his craft; the thumping guitar line that rolls through the core of this track in an understated fashion serves as this tether to the listener’s emotions. But, thus far, O’ Connor seems to have found the perfect foil for every track, and having Sui Zhen guest on this tune does not hurt. Geoffrey has this more baritone nature, like a heavy melodic sigh, but Sui Zhen sparkles, effectively bobbing and weaving back and forth between the two distinct voices, creating this dreamy freefall sensation. Do I want more? Yes please! Geoffrey’s new LP, For As Long As I Can Remember is out on August 6th via Chapter Music.
Looks that we have a pop-centric focus this morning, bringing in another great tune from the Umbrellas and their forthcoming LP. This tune reminds me a lot of the band’s label mates, Jeanines, but perhaps that’s mostly revolving around the brevity and the sharp jangles hanging in the thick of the tune. But, where they make things their own is where they take the urgency and stretch it out, adding in this sort of 60s girl-group vocal harmonizing, ending up giving the song a dreamier feel. The rhythm section gives you the immediacy and bounce, but you can sit back and let it wash over you a bit more, calmed almost by the melodic nature. The band release their self-titled debut on August 6th via Slumberland.
Let’s face it, everyone wants to be Stereolab this year, or last year, or really, just period. And why not. But, imagine taking some of the more psychedelic and progressive movements of the aforementioned French outfit, and just replacing them with high octane pop moments. This is exactly what Le Pain are doing with their debut single, sort of exchanging the elements that might have made Stereolab weird or inaccessible (to some), then flipping it by going pure pop. You get hints of other like-minded acts like Alvvays, as the vocals are coated in this sugary sweetness that’s certainly undeniable. Pretty bold opening statement from the young outfit, if you ask me.
I wonder how some great bands get overlooked, particularly when they seem built for the enjoyment of the masses. The Shivas are one such band, and they’ve always crafted these hook-laden jams, my personal favorite being “You Make Me Wanna Die.” Today, they announce their new record Feels So Good//Feels So Bad, and do so with this swinging number that out their infectious quality on display. At times, it has this natural swinging psychedelic boogie to it, which is definitely tickles the ears; I think they up the ante by adding the emphasis of the vocals, letting the song sort of soar and pop in all the right places. Of course, the band are masters of choruses, and this one here is the best piece little piece of ear candy you’re going to get to chew on today. Fingers crossed this jam and this record put the band in front of more ears; the new LP is out on September 24th via Tender Loving Empire.
The title of this song seems to fit the story of the latest album from Damon & Naomi with Kurihara; the whole of the record seems like a letter to their friend and collaborator, Kurihara. Here we’ve got dreamy vocals from Naomi, riding on the crest of waves, crossing that vast distance of ocean in order to reach the shores of Japan. I love how there’s a guitar that cascades across the song’s middle, like another shared memory among companions, being told by another narrator, though clearly tied to the storytelling of both song and LP. You can feel the song reaching across the distances, yearning to find solace in long-lasting companionship. You’ll hear this tune on A Sky Record, out August 6th via 20-20-20.
I’ve really dug what I’ve gotten to hear from the forthcoming This Dream LP, so as Sungaze keeps dropping singles, I’m going to keep spending a little time with them. Honestly, when “Slow the Burn” opened, there was a brief minute when they felt like they were drawing from the organic nature of early Badlydrawnboy, but as the guitar work begins to ring in your ears, the song naturally takes on a slow burn of its own. Ivory Snow’s voice comes across heavy, offering these drifting tones that craft this natural dreaminess. Little nuanced synth stabs add some textural balance to the track, illustrating the band’s intent of touching up every little detail in their work. This Dream will be available on August 13th.
Somehow, I’ve been listening to the Innocence Mission for 20+ years, longer than most bands that get constant rotation in my playlist. In fact, I usually play songs from the band’s catalog to help my daughter fall asleep each night, so despite all the raves for Karen Peris‘ new track, I feel like I’d be doing myself an injustice by not pointing it out. This one’s a family affair, with Peris’ husband and children adding to the song’s embellishments; I think we can all agree the moment the song’s sweeping strings come across its difficult not to be awestruck. There’s just something so comforting about her distinctively gentle voice; I just want to nuzzle in the notes. You’ll find this song on A Song Is Way Above the Lawn, out this October via Bella Union. Excuse me while I go listen to Befriended.
If you’ve been living in Austin the last few years, and you love a good show, you’ve hopefully had a chance to catch the pop sensation TC Superstar, who always encourage their live sets to turn into full on dance parties. Well, it’s time for the rest of the world to take note, and hopefully people will catch on now that the group has announced As Seen On TV, their new LP. Listening to the first single from the record, you can hear their influences, falling somewhere between Chromeo and Hot Chip, though I like to think there’s a little more thought in what they’re doing, considering all the songs generally have a choreographed live set up. Bob along, let yourself free, then wait for the new album to drop in September.
Honestly, there’s no one really crafting music like our friends in Colourmusic. They’re building these pop songs structured around noise elements, filled with layers and obscured vocals, almost like a primal, cavernous celebration. Their latest single is exactly on par, though it comes with the announcement of the band’s newest record, Thank Goodness Hell is Easy to Get Into, which will come out later this year via Resonant Cult. Listen through below and you’ll find yourself indulging in the band’s hypnotic nature, built on this bubbling brooding bass, while the vocals echo disturbingly throughout the song’s duration. Nobody does it quite like this.
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.