One of the great things about being in Pop Filter is that the band’s armed with so many incredible songwriters, so their album’s are full of a tightly knit diversity. With “Heaven Sent,” the first single, you got an energetic punch of rock n’ roll swagger, but on their newest single they’re settling back into this expansive brand of glorious pop. Every note on the vocals hits perfectly , calmed and coo, with faint hints of soulful, aided by a gentle backing vocal. Perhaps it’s last night’s Nick Drake set, but the piano work adds a nice little texture too that’s thrilling inside. Don’t get me wrong, the track can still swell and feel rocking and rushed, but they’ve got enough experience to pull back in just the perfect spots, leaving you wanting more. Cono is out on December 1st via Bobo Integral.
If you’re going to release one last single before your album drops, my advice is that you make it a banger, just like Colored Lights. While the song’s not an out and out rocker, there’s something in the production of the guitars here that drives the track; it feels like its got natural momentum that can’t be slowed; you can’t stop it. That said, the band manages to also craft a slight pop contrast, when the track switches to the makeshift chorus, letting Frode’s melodic vocals crest in the song’s middle. The band release their self-titled LP on Bobo Integral on September 22nd.
You’d have to go back years and years to find out when I first feel for Frome Strostad’s songwriting; he first came to my attention with I Was a King, but has played with folks like Peter Buck of REM and Norman Blake of Teenage Fanclub. After dropping a new I Was a King LP, he’s now focused on another project, Colored Lights. Today there’s a light folk pop jangler coming from the band, and I can’t help but to swoon at the gentle nature here; you feel as if you’re gently being caressed, like being lulled to sleep by a beautiful lullaby. The musicianship behind is perfect as well, texturizing the track so as to maximize every bend and jangle in the songwriting. Colored Lights release their self-titled LP on September 22nd via Bobo Integral.
I love when I fall for a track that completely changes direction from earlier singles, like the newest tune from Life Strike. “Downwinders” and “Giving up the Ghost” both had this combination of punk urgency and jangling hooks, but “Whip Around” has this mood that seems like a meeting place between REM and the Replacements. There’s this maturity and use of patience in the development of the song’s space, allowing for the punch in each verse to really blow back on the listener. Whereas those early hits felt urgent, this one feels a touch more lax, like sitting on the beach waiting for the sea spray to wash across you. Peak Dystopia hits on July 14th via Bobo Integral.
When we first heard this track from Life Strike, I marveled out how the band managed to take on the subject matter of post-nuclear fallout and make it something you wanted to cheer on from the sidelines; I still feel that way, but now there’s this powerful visual to go with the bursting energy of the tune. The coloring of the video alone provides this really impactful image, especially as the colors bleed out, as one would expect from a nuclear explosion. As I watched through, I also started to hear more thunder than jangle in the music, giving the band a heavier sound than what I initially thought, so be ready to sit back and relish in both the music and visuals. The band release Peak Dystopia via Bobo Integral/Stable Label on July 14th.
Over the past dozen years or so, I’ve been covering the music of Frode Stromstad, one of the key songwriters in I Was a King/The No Ones. Today, news came our way that Frode has a new project titled Colored Lights, and we’re more than happy to share the first little taste of what’s in store. Personally, I can’t escape the familiarity of Frode’s voice; it seems to sit perfectly in this song, like a small little boat casually resting atop the water as the song ripples through your speakers. Emotional impact is almost immediate, matching up the light strum and percussion with Stromstad’s voice…and then it’s gone, fading away with a gentle bit of noise exploration. The band will release their self-titled LP via Bobo Integral on September 22nd.
I have no idea how you write about something some harmful and make it seem so beautiful and fun, but here we are with the latest from Life Strike. The band have based their latest single on those exposed to areas of nuclear testing, yet somehow they manage to make it seem like something we all want to cheer. Now, I’m not trying to diminish those horrors, but there’s just something about this track that screams for high volume and fist pumping; there’s an urgency in those sharp guitar licks that will have you banging your head and singing at the top of your lungs. Honestly, this is one of those songs that stays with you, and I can’t wait to hear Peak Dystopia, out July 14th via Bobo Integral.
Tough Age are not wasting their time, or your time, with their latest single; the song drops its hook into your ear instantly, letting the riffs cut right through from the moment you press play. As they’ve done in past singles, they let you get swept up in the polished cool of the vocals, with syllables stretched out to maximize the emotive nature of the melody. The chugging jangles have smoothed out edges, giving it a less angular nature, so the track gets to embrace the pop corners that are present. But, just as you’re vibing, the song wraps up. It’s the perfect little sample of great power pop, all of which you’ll find on the band’s new LP, Waiting Here, out June 16th via Bobo Integral.
It should come as no surprise that Australia’s got another great band to get us excited, with Life Strike making the announcement of a new LP headed your way. I’ll admit that my initial draw was definitely linked to the vocals, which remind me of Ian Dury, operating with that distinctive drawl. Then I went back and pressed play one more time, soaking up the post-punk propulsion that rushes the song forward, guitars swirling behind trying to play catch up. Somewhere lurking in the middle in the song’s middle is this little plot twist, adding a little textural layering to the track. Look for the group to drop Peak Dystopia on July 14th via Stable Label and Bobo Integral.
When I listen to this new single from Tough Age, there’s something hanging on the edge of the track, something that seems filled with the promise of tomorrow. The guitars shuffle from the get-go, offering this moderately upbeat drive that encourages the rest of the band to keep pace. Of course, the rhythm section has no problem there, but that push makes the vocals come through with this urgency that’s not always present in the modern cycle, so it feels great here, wishing us all the best of our day. They ride out the track with this sparkling little guitar solo, and then we’re done, so you can press play again. Waiting Here, the new record, is out on June 16th via We Are Time/Bobo Integral.