Having been a long time fan of Wye Oak, of course I was looking forward to this track, and any ensuing goodness they had to offer up. But, when the song appeared on TheGum I had no idea just how good it was going to be. Jenn’s voice sounds phenomenal here, and part of me has this tingling feeling I got when I first heard “Zebra” by Beach House last year. If that’s any indicator, then Civilian, the new album out on March 8th from Merge is going to be one incredible animal. Just listen to that squalling feedback near the end! It’s like steamy sex in the woods, then Sonic Youth reckless abandon. Yes, I realize that might be a bit redundant, but go with it.
Download: Wye Oak – Civilian [MP3]
Last April I brought you all news about the Vivian Girls/Woods side-project, The Babies, and at that point in time, it was rumored to be sort of a one off, kind of just a fun release amongst friends. But, as these things inevitably go, the group had so much fun writing together that they continued to pump out tracks, leaving us with the upcoming album, The Babies, on February 8th of next year. It’s going to be sort of a combination between bedroom pop and lo-fi grittiness, and in our minds, that sounds exactly like this new single, leading us to believe this could be one hell of a good time in 2011.
Download: The Babies – Run Me Over [MP3]
It’s been quite some time since we’ve heard a word about the forthcoming album from local Austinites Oh No Oh My. But, we now know the band will be releasing their new record, People Problems, on January 18th. While their last effort had a lot of disjointed folk attributes, it seems that the boys have cleaned out the closet here. Their first single, “Walking Into Me,” has a bit more straightforward pop appeal, going right for the emotional appeal, though moderate guitar strumming in the background, and other tinkering instruments, still allows the band to keep their quirky attitude intact. We like that, and that makes us anticipate this release even more.
Download: Oh No Oh My – Walking Into Me [MP3]
Every once in awhile the British press will actually get something right. They’ve been all over The Vaccines, expecting huge things from the group in 2011, even though the band have little more than a demo to their name. There is, however, this one incredible single featuring two great tracks. The first track is titled “Wreckin’ Bar,” and its this amped up tune that blows by you in less than 1.5 minutes; catchy to boot. Then, there’s the below single, “Blow It Up,” which draws out the listening experience a bit more, giving a bit of angular guitars and hollow swirling vocals to the masses. As of right now, I’m super excited about this band and their promise. I’ll not get too over myself until they actually put out something more substantial, but for now, it’s nice to meet you guys.
Download: The Vaccines – Blow It Up [MP3]
You know how much we love Matinee Recordings, one of the best, if not the best, small labels around right now. They’re releasing a special gift for their fans, The Matinee Holiday Soiree EP, and its filled with exclusive holiday tracks from five of the bands on their roster, including my personal favorite Math and Physics Club. You also get to hear this new Strawberry Whiplash track, which despite having a holiday theme, doesn’t sound too far off from the splendid pop this label has been churning out for some time. You can preview it Here, then head over the the Matinee site to get your hands on your very own copy. This is the perfect gift for your pop loving friends; its reasonably priced, and filled with good tunes.
Download: Strawberry Whiplash – Santa Needs a Holiday [MP3]
You can’t deny the buzz of a band, and right now we’re stil supporting local Texas act Fergus and Geronimo. In preparation for their new record, Unlearn, which will be released by our pals over at Hardly Art on January 18th, just a two days after my birthday. This one’s a little bit less post-rock jam, and a little more grab-your-lady-swing, though the vocals still have that throaty yelping quality. As of right now, expectations couldn’t get any higher for this band’s debut, and with songs like this one, you know we’re all on board too.
Download: Fergus and Geronimo – Powerful Lovin [MP3]
Austin’s favorite, well one of the many, instrumental band, Balmorhea, are releasing some new tunes for you to grab. The Candor/Clamor 7″ is hitting the streets on Western Vinyl, and it shows a newer sound for the group. They’re including new instruments, such as marimbas. It definitely makes them sound a bit more exciting, although part of me wants to see them just get really dark and mess things up, but that’s just one man’s love for discordant instrumental moments. All in all, the band continues to show interesting progressive moves forward, making this an interesting purchase, as it will clearly document the band’s exploration of new sonic territory. Never a bad thing.
Download: Balmorhea – Clamor [MP3]
How on Earth can a site run by several individuals come to a consensus on Best Album of 2010? Well, you missed out on some arm-wrestling, 100 yard dashes and other circus-like shennanigans, but we finally narrowed it down…well, down to our Top 50. Listen, we know you probably don’t agree with all of this, I mean we completely left off Sleigh Bells, yet we worked hard to combine our various tastes into one list. Fee free to tell us where we went wrong, but we’re pretty stoked on the list we put together as a whole.
||Saturday, Dec. 4th
||$10 at Door
We’re definitely glad to know that Cactus Cafe will still be around for some time, as they continue to bring us little treats, like Saturday’s show, featuring none other than Will Johnson. Dude wrote great songs for Centro-matic and his own solo-stuff, a bit with Jason Molina, not to mention playing drums for Monsters of Folk for a bit, at least on tour. Us guys here? We love him, everything he does. You can guarantee we’ll be there. You can also catch Some Say Leland opening up.
Download: Will Johnson – Closing Down My House [MP3]
Andy Herod was always one of my favorites, especially when he fronted the Comas. Now, he’s still working on his latest project, Electric Owls. They combine a lot of his rootsy folk elements with flourishes of electronics. The band has just released the new Cullowhee Songs EP on Vagrant, which features members of Band of Horses and other Comas remnants. Herod always had this way of connecting with me as a listener, and based on this track, it seems like he still has that special touch. Give this track a spin, and if you likes, then go back and check out all the old Comas stuff, as well as the last Electric Owls record. I bet you’ll be pleased.
Download: Electric Owls – When I Was a Flood [MP3]