New Tunes from Forest Fire

Man, it’s been a really good day for quirky pop numbers all over the Internets.  This sprawling little number from New York’s Forest Fire is just another one of those.  The band have recently signed to Fat Cat, who will be releasing their newest album, Staring at the X, on October 18th.  If you listen closely, I swear you’ll hear the voice of Devandra Banhart, though the music sounds nothing at all like that.  Light orchestrated touches come in and out, and carefully echoed guitar chords clang in the background.  Whatever their formula is for songwriting, I’m absolutely loving it today.


Download: Forest Fire – Future Shadows [MP3]

New Music from Quiet Company

The guys in Quiet Company have been hard at work the last few years, building a large fan base in Austin, and moving their popularity beyond our fair city.  On October 4th, the band will release their latest album, We Are All Where We Belong. They’ve been kind enough to offer the public a free glimpse of the record with the song “Fear & Fallacy, Sitting in a Tree.”  It’s based around a piano structure, and as it bursts into a pop euphoria, you’ll notice some similarities to the old tunes of Ben Kweller. It’s gentle, it’s hook-laden, and it’s just a joy to listen to, so give yourself a chance to familiarize yourself with Quiet Company.


Download: Quiet Company – Fear & Fallacy, Sitting in a Tree [MP3]

New Music from Gringo Star

This little track has been floating around the Internet for a few days now, and we couldn’t help other than to toss it up your way.  Gringo Star, another band from the ATL, are ready to release their new album, Count Yer Lucky Stars, on October 25th via Gigantic Music.  If it’s got the hooks that you’ll find on this song, and those rising vocals during the chorus, it’s going to definitely be a joy.  You’ll probably find tons of things to compare the group too, but on this track, the guitar sound definitely has a quality I haven’t heard from a lot of guitars as of late.  It’s just a great track, hands down.


Download: Gringo Star – Shadow [MP3]

More New Music from King Louie

If you haven’t heard, King Louie’s Missing Monuments just released their latest album, Painted White.  Pressing hard to get some much deserved love, the band has released another single for the masses, “It’s Like XTC.”  No, it doesn’t sound like XTC, but it does sound like a rocking good time being had by a bunch of friends at a local bar.  It’s not super polished, which gives credibility to King Louie’s garage sound.  Energetic tracks are supposed to be fun, and the country tinged stomper definitely will give you that. Add it to your playlist, and have a blast.  Don’t forget to pick up Painted White while you’re at it.


Download: King Louie’s Missing Monuments – (It’s Like) XTC [MP3]

Boston Spaceships – Let It Beard

Rating: ★★★½☆

How does one review something written by Robert Pollard?  You know there are going to be some amazing tunes, but you know there will probably be a few that you can toss away, especially when there’s 26 tracks.  But, in the case of Let It Beard, the latest release by Boston Spaceships, the majority of the trucks are solid, and you’ll hardly find any throw-away tunes.

“Blind 20-20” kind of gave me a start, building up towards its machine-gun drumming.  Bob’s entry changed the dynamic of the track, and when he hits that renown Pollard pitch, it’s a great moment–all before the song subsides into itself. Clearly, Boston Spaceships is still under the songwriting of Pollard, as evidenced by “Tourist UFO.”  Sure, the guitar has that angular chug, psychedelically walking in and out of the track, but the voice of Bob dominates in the forefront.  It’s incredible thinking about his persona (the drinking, the shows, etc) and his ability to still pull off warm vocals that grab even the most casual fan.

The construction of “Make a Record for Lo-Life” grabbed me immediately, like riding up and down on some sort of indie rock roller-coaster.  Crashing cymbals and chugging guitars give a bit of bounce to the track, and we’ll call the solo in the middle a bit of a racing moment on straight-away. Of course, song construction, and self-importance might account for the weaker moments on Let It Beard. “I’ll Make It Strong (for you),” for instance, just doesn’t hold up to the energetic tracks.  Like several of the tracks present, they appear to come from a different, almost unplugged guitar sound, taking a bit of the bite out.

Still, even with moments that come off softer, slower moments do have the ability to win out on this latest Boston Spaceships effort.  “Christmas Girl” sticks out, as the guitar itself begins slow, then almost seems muted, but again, Pollard’s voice has this capacity to propel the song into this blissful pop moment.  It’s quite possibly the standout moment of the entire record, if I had to pick one (I mean, there are horns!). Similarly, “No Steamboats” sort of trickles along, begging to be pushed to the limit of maximum rock n’ roll, but it never quite goes there, not until the end.  You’ve got to appreciate appropriate use of restraint.

In the end, Let It Beard is a mixed bag of various touches of Robert Pollard’s legacy.  While a great deal of the tracks have Boston Spaceships focusing on a more raucous garage sound, there’s still elemental dabbling in the studio with visible “lost sounds” tossed in just for the sake of it.  There’s just something about listening to anything penned by Pollard that eventually finds its way into your soul, haunting you passionately, secretly whispering for you to skip this track, love the next one, repeat that one, and then go back through it all over again.  It’s a sort of magic most people wish they had in their songwriting, but so few seem to possess.


Download: Boston Spaceships – Christmas Girl [MP3]

New Music from Turf War

Really, there’s two things coming out of this post.  First, Atlanta is continuing its reign over the end of summer, with several bands putting out great tracks/records.  Turf War is just another of those, giving you a stomping jangle rocker to grab onto this afternoon. Which brings us to point two: the band will be releasing their record, Years of Living Dangerously, in September on Old Flame Records, who we’d like to point out now, are pushing some great music your way lately.  There you have it folks: good Atlanta music, continue good music from one of our favorite labels.  Happy Monday to you.


Download: Turf War – Cheers To The Years [MP3]

Show Preview: Arctic Monkeys (8/2)

Date Tuesday, August 2nd
Location Stubbs
Doors 700pm
Tickets SOLD OUT

Okay, so this is a SOLD OUT show, but you know how it goes over at Stubbs; there’s bound to be some scalpers who bought twenty tickets to sell to you and your friends. I think it’s worth a try, considering what a remarkably energetic band the Arctic Monkeys are on the stage, with bouncing rhythms and angular guitar chops. And, on top of that you get to see one of our favorite new acts, Young Buffalo, who we posted about a few weeks back.  If you can find your way in somehow, I’m pretty sure you’ll leave drenched in sweat, feeling that it was worth every minute.


Download: Young Buffalo – Only We Can Keep You From Harm [MP3]

More New Music from A Lull

We brought you news of up-and-comers A Lull last summer, and as the year has gone on, they’ve slowly gotten more deserved press with their debut, Confetti. But, they’re not here to rest on their laurels, already prepping a new EP, the Confetti Reprise EP, which will be released on August 16th. You’ll definitely get the pop-constructionist experimentalism here, with tribal beats (including rim shots), swells of noise coming in and out, and vocals atop it all–then it trickles in an entirely different manner towards the end of the track.  It’s just another sign that A Lull are on their way to making a solid name for themselves.


Download: A Lull – Pot Luck [MP3]

Show Preview: Weird Weeds @ the Mohawk (7/30)

Date Saturday, July 30th
Location Mohawk
Doors 900p
Tickets $6 at the Door

Austin’s Weird Weeds have been knocking around our town for quite some time, and they’ve built up a pretty decent following.  This means you’ll be in for some good times, along with some great music at the Mohawk on Saturday evening.  Also, you have to get their early to catch one of our favorite acts Sleep Good, still riding high after the release of their latest album, Skyclimber. Lean Hounds will be the first act of the evening; another good act.  With a slew of shows going down over the weekend like Iron and Wine and Joanna Newsom, you’ll get more bang for your buck by ending up over at Mohawk.


Download: Sleep Good – Shoneys [MP3]

New Music (and album) from We Can’t Enjoy Ourselves

If you scour the Interwebs long enough late at night, you’re bound to come across something decent, which is exactly the case when I stumbled upon We Can’t Enjoy Ourselves. They’ve just self-released their own album, One Belongs Here More Than You, and you can pick it up for the lucky “name your own price” tag. While the band might be from the States, they definitely have the dance-hall feel of British bands celebrated in the annals of Northern Soul.  Give this a try, and get your feet moving and your arms swinging on another sweltering summer day.


Download: We Can’t Enjoy Ourselves – Back of My Bible [MP3]

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