Man A.A. Bondy is one of my all time favorite songwriters to come out during the rise of our website. He has always had a knack for simple, yet emotional and powerful songs capable of evoking real feelings. For eight long years we haven’t heard much from Bondy, until he dropped two new singles late on Friday afternoon. The first one, entitled “Killers 3”, is just an absolute beauty in songwriting. It’s Bondy at his best with a slow burning, atmospheric track featuring some sick organ playing. He’s also released a new song called “Images of Love” with a bit more of a dancy vibe to it which is certainly a cool change from the songwriter.
There’s just something in the craft of J. Spaceman that makes me come back again and again, especially now that he’s really been focused on this swelling style of Western americana. On this round, we find him right at home, almost resting in the midst of some vast expanse of musical landscape. Because it’s Spiritualized, there are, of course, added textural elements from like horns and strings, not to mention this vibrating electronic note that runs through the background…and those backing vocals only sweeten the deal. And Nothing Hurt will drop on September 7th via Fat Possum.
Man, summertime is the right time. I hit up the gym, got a few miles of running in, then I get to come home to a sweet new track from Spiritualized, one of my favorite bands. It seems to be the same place J Spaceman left us when they last dropped a release back in 2012, though the recording process was said to be much different this round. Spaceman says he spent months writing the songs in his bedroom, but if that’s the case, he still manages to capture what makes some of the band’s shows so captivating with huge horns and textured keys built around the simple structures. And Nothing Hurt, the new full length LP, will be out on September 7th via Fat Possum.
If you’ve been anywhere in the Interwebs over the last year, then you’ve surely seen the name Soccer Mommy pop up a time or two (even here at ATH). It looks like Sophie Allison’s star continues to rise with the announcement of her album, Clean, which will be released by Fat Possum. At the age of 20, Allison carries a certain confidence in her songwriting that many veterans can’t come near; the soft hush that hits at the chorus is a pretty special moment, repeated to craft that dreamy essence before the guitar lightly feeds back. Look for this record to be a huge hit when it’s dropped on March 2nd.
Surely you’re aware of my undying love for all things Will Johnson, be it his solo work or Centro-Matic, but now he’s founded Marie/Lepanto with Justin Peter Kinkel-Schuster of Water Liars. Johnson’s voice is clearly a standout on the band’s first single, quivering slightly with his distinctive tones. This tune’s also a bit heavier than the work we’ve heard from Johnson of late, which could be due to Kinkel-Schuster, but regardless, the melodic elements unfurl beneath the crunchy guitar work. The duo will release Tenkiller on January 26th via Fat Possum imprint, Big Legal Mess.
Some of us ATH members have been hyping The Districts for quite awhile now and it’s just about damn time that the rest of you got on board as well. If you weren’t with us yet, latest single “If Before I Wake” is sure to change your mind immediately. The guitars soar, the drums are hit with ferocity, and the vocals are timed perfectly with major emotions behind them. How could you say no to this song? Seriously.
Last week Soccer Mommy dropped her latest single from her forthcoming, Collection. It had to be one of the more buzzed about acts of last week, and deservedly so…as Sophia definitely has upped her game since some of her earliest recordings. The opening moments are grand, circling guitars around the vocals, but what grabbed me was that added punch to just around the 2 minute mark, carrying a huge punch of pop. Apparent confidence in her songwriting is surely another notch that shows how quickly she’s grown into being one of the most talked about young acts about; look for her new effort on August 4th via Fat Possum.
I was really impressed with Hoops during this year’s SXSW; they were way tighter as a unit than I expected them to be. This song continues the band’s push of lightly jangling pop hits, though the video accompanying the track also represents the band’s sense of humor. Personally, it’s great to hear a band with such promise that’s still able to have a little bit of fun…especially when they’re facing such high expectations. But, you can relax…these guys are going to pull it off; you’ll be able to see precisely why when you pick up Routines on May 5th via Fat Possum.
I don’t want Adam Torres to stop writing, or singing for that matter. The opening moments of this track display how powerful his instrument is; there’s this blissful fragility, almost like the pained tones of Jeff Buckley. Of course, he wouldn’t be quite as successful without the accompanying bits behind him, especially the violin work of our favorite, Aisha Burns. If you thought Pearls to Swine was an artist at the pinnacle of his powers, it looks like Torres has no intention of slowing down. Look for his new EP, I Came to Sing the Songs, via Fat Possum on February 24th.
You’ve likely already seen this new Hoops jam pop up; it’s like a cross between catchy dream pop and Mac DeMarco, so all the kids are happy. Me, I’m happy because we’re getting close to Spring time and to SXSW, which they’ll be attending. This song serves as the announcement that the band will be working with Fat Possum to release their debut, Routines, on May 5th. Want some dreamy pop, but not ready to come to the dark side of indiepop yet? Well, then get into these guys, they’re the perfect point just in the middle.