Having followed the Zoltars for some time, I cannot begin to share how excited we are to have the privilege of releasing their next LP this October. In honor of that release, we thought we’d try out another gem for your ears…so lets get to it. For me, there’s two reasons I love this track…especially going into this week (the first week of school). One, there’s this great contrast between dark and light; the riffs are heavy from the get-go, churned and driving, but the chorus changes that into this shimmering light creeping in from the horizon. But, like all great songs, they need great lyrics or themes…as a teacher dealing with kids (though this applies to all humans), thematically its about seeing your own gifts. If you’re interested in buying Telling Stories, you can pre-order the whole LP right HERE.
Austin act Genuine Leather always seem to have something up their sleeve, and this week’s no difference as they’ve just shared a brand new track from their forthcoming EP. At the moment, the band seems super-intent upon just rocking anthemic pop songs. I can hear little hints of Elvis Costello curl in the vocals delivered, while also hearing a nod to power-pop heroes across the board. It’s infectious and hits hard, especially if you’re willing to let your speakers hit full blast. You’ve got appreciate the band’s push to craft a pop song within the confines of 3 chords…and pull it off no less. Their EP is slated for release later this year, but you can catch the band at Mohawk tomorrow night (9/21) with Blood, Nick Adamo, Reen & the Renegades.
Hey now I think we’ve made it abundantly clear we are big fans of our local ATX friend Matthew Squires and the music he creates. He’s always had a knack for being a just a tad left of center in the Austin indie scene while also churning out some absolutely beautiful songs over the years. As he prepares for the release of his new album Visions of America, Squires recently dropped the lead track for streaming enjoyment. This guy seriously continues to evolve into one of the most important songwriters in our city.
Visions of America will drop on August 30th.
Even in our own backyard, things slide by, which probably isn’t aided by me choosing to stay home more often and kick it with my rad kid…so please, I apologize for not pointing you earlier to how great Sasha and the Valentines are. I just caught them playing at our friend Maud’s birthday party, and while I knew the rest of the acts would be great, I was caught off by how entrancing this act was. Their EP, dropped at the end of May has these slightly dreamy pop tones, perfectly coated in musical atmospherics right where they need to be. One of the things I loved live, which lives in the recorded version, is the way singer Sarah holds onto monosyllabic notes; it definitely provides a hypnotic effect you might enjoy. These four songs are great, I’m sorry I missed them. But here they are now.
David Longoria has been a longtime fixture in the Austin music scene, so it makes sense that his new project Longriver features folks such as Thor Harris, Sarah La Puerta and Lindsey Verill. This song’s a nice stripped down ballad, but what struck me was the fragility in Longoria’s voice; it’s almost as if it’s accented by the strum of each string, plucked to match his changes in pitch. I like the quieter close of the song too, as if David’s resigned himself to the concept of just ‘wasting time’ writing this song. Trust me, though; he’s not wasting our time; you can grab his debut album, Of Seasons, on September 6th from Hullabaloo Records.
Indigo Bunting are the kind of act you’re meant to fall in love with and know very little about. They’re an Austin outfit with some connections to Tiger Waves, but that’s where the story ends…as far as we know. Still, they pop up out of nowhere, toss an album at us, disappear then pop up with a few new gems, like today. While everything’s showed brilliant promise, these two numbers feel like they’ve finally got things clicking on all gears. “White Noise” this bursting pop hit, calling upon forefathers like Unicorns and Animal Collective to craft collage pop pieces on the right side of weird; the chorus for this one is super rewarding. “I Don’t Mind” illustrates the band’s songwriting gifts, offering warmer tones while still orbiting the same pop planet as the A-side here. Never enough words to write about such a talented bunch.
Since the inception of this site back in the 00s, Abram Shook has been a constant feature on these Internet pages…either as a solo artists or one of his various projects like Feverbones or Great Nostalgic. Next week, he’ll be releasing his new LP, the Neon Machine, and while it definitely has his imprint, I think a lot of folks will be surprised by the sounds. For me, the synth pulse, albeit in a smooth fashion, was an unexpected twist; it’s interesting how some of those notes match the rhythm of Abram’s vocal delivery. Speaking of his vocals, there’s this velvety soulfulness that it far more pronounced than anything he’s done; I think the “with your time” line is the only time when I was like “yeah, this sounds like Abram, 100%.” It’s a really impressive shift into new territory, and I can see this getting some Neon Indian comparisons for those with careful ears. The new LP is out August 16th via Western Vinyl. He’ll be out on the road through October with White Denim, mostly through East Coast/Midwest; check some of those dates HERE.
Those of you following the Austin scene are surely aware of the talented noise rockers, Glaze; they’ve been one of our favorites for the last few years, known for incredible live performances. Today, the band release their Glaze TV EP, and I think it’ll only take one listen before you, too, fall in love with the band. “Beetlejuice” is an obvious standout, but I love it for illustrating all the things I love about the band; there’s heavy noise present, stripped back for melody, brooding energy and even a little bit of post-rock thrown in the breakdown…they’ve got all your favorites covered in one jam! I think “Moody” is another nice addition to the band’s catalog as well, giving off glimpses of the band’s dreamier side, containing the noise only when necessary; it allows for the band’s natural catchiness to shine through that blanketed feedback. Austinites can catch the band live tomorrow night over at Mohawk for the celebratory release show; you can grab tickets HERE.
It’s the time of year when releases come hard and fast, everyone trying to cram music in between their Fall tours and what not; I mean, we have 3 releases on our label in the next two + months, so you know the rest of Austin is busy. Two things I missed while on a brief beach vacay were these new jams from TVs Daniel and Annabelle Chairlegs.
TVs Daniel is the most recent project from all around rock n’ roller Daniel Fried; he’s also the key element in acts like Video and Bad Sports (amongst others). I love this track for its huge buzzsaw guitars disguised beneath a penchant for anthemic arena rock; the subtle backing vocals are a really nice touch. This track appears on a 7″ for Italian label, Wild Honey Records. It pretty much rules.
Annabelle Chairlegs are everyone’s Austin favorites; they’re the band that all the bands love…they even appeared on the Slack Capital Compilation we put together with Eric of Big Bill and First Human Records. This new single has this swagger lurking in the midst of psychedelic waves; I love the tenacity of the vocal performance. This tune should pop up on a sophomore LP any day now.
Austin based amigo Matthew Squires has long been a favorite around these parts and we are totally excited to hear he is returning this year with new music. For a preview of what the new album might sound like, Squires has just released this new single called “Strange Day”. At first, it sort of sounds like older, quirky material we’ve always known, but then it slowly evolves about two minutes in with a louder guitar, faster pace, and heated vocals. Might sound like a Neil Young song to some if you know his older material, and that’s perfectly all right with me.
Squires will release new album Visions of America on August 30th.