The new Sun June is simply indescribable. I’ve attempted to pigeonhole it, make clever comparisons, express my initial thoughts…but for all that effort, I have no words. It’s like this magnificent quicksand; I’m watching myself sinking into an unknown abyss, yet as this song plays in the background, I’m not unhappy. In fact, this song feels like just letting things be. It has movement, thus the choreography, but at times, its so patient and unobtrusive that it just swirls about your head dizzyingly. Some songs are better left without my detailing; they speak for themselves. Look for Somewhere next February via Run For Cover/Keeled Scales.
On Katy Kirby‘s latest single from her much anticipated Cool Dry Place LP I’m really in love with the way she uses the song’s storytelling to naturally build tension. The exposition has this careful fragility, mostly Kirby working her voice over ornate guitar play and light percussion; you can feel the volume grow, moving towards a more pronounced moment. But, even then, it’s a false dawn of sorts, as there’s still a more pronounced presence coming down the line…a climax of sorts…all this powerful storytelling, and that’s not even getting into Kirby’s lyrical content. She’s at the top of her craft here, and there’s no looking back. Expect big things when Cool Dry Place drops via Keeled Scales on February 19th.
Down here in Austin, our friends over at Keeled Scales have been raving about the incredible songwriting prowess of Katy Kirby, and today…lets hope the world is listening. She announces Cool Dry Place with this incredible video for “Traffic,” a song dedicated to a former partner who seemed determined to revel in his own trials rather than realize that “nobody has it better than you.” Her sound, perhaps influenced by her childhood singing in church definitely has a pop bent to it, though you can hear her pulling away from those tendencies. Honestly, take the work of my favorite Rosie Tucker and maybe sprinkle a little sugar on top; it’s got this great playful vocal that’s highly rewarding. You can grab the debut LP (it’s a Vincy Vaughn reference right?) on February 19th from Keeled Scales.
With the release of “Singing” last month, we all knew Sun June had something cooking; today they officially announce the release of their new LP, Somewhere, handled by Run for Cover and Keeled Scales. For me, I’m not sure what’s more striking at this point…the song or its accompanying video. I love the use of light and shadow in the video, directed by the band’s own Laura and Stephen, but damned if the song doesn’t blow the rest of the musical competitors out of the water. The song, trickles in around forlorn notes and Colwell’s solemn delivery; you’re almost oblivious to the subtle tension building, bursting through near the 2:50 mark to deliver an emphatic sonic euphoria that solidifies the song’s greatness. The LP will be out in February of next year!
Austin’s Sun June probably need no introduction out there, but rest assured, they’re one of the best exports we’ve had in our fair city in a good bit. Today we get news that they’re signing on to work with Run for Cover Records (they’ll still work with Keeled Scales too!) for their next album, slated for release in 2021. They’ve made said announcement with a new single, and a video featuring their local ATX neighborhood. It’s hard not to be mesmerized by Colwell’s voice in this one, with this powerful softness that exudes confidence. Behind her, the band work on creating this delicate space, perfecting notes that hang in a Hill Country landscape. Simply put, this song feels like home. Look for more from the band as we try to escape 2020.
It’s another round of Bandcamp Friday recommendations! Of course, we’d love you to consider our label ATH Records, and also Slack Capital…but we’d be remiss if we didn’t point you to a few new things you can grab today!
First, Will Johnson is surprisingly releasing this follow up to last year’s Wire Mountain. He’s one of my favorite Texas’ voices, period, and to have a brand new LP worth of tunes to enjoy, well, we’re all in for a treat. El Capitan is available on vinyl through Keeled Scales.
Another great record being secretly released today is Merce Lemon‘s Moonth. Musically, Merce’s work recalls the clever wordplay of Rosie Tucker, and perhaps a musical nod to the likes of Lomelda; it’s the perfect bedroom pop record that makes you wish you could keep it a secret from the world…except you can’t because it’s too good! Available via Crafted Sounds.
A few years ago now we released the most excellent Please Don’t Stop by Marmalakes. Why does that matter here? Well, Chase Weinacht (he’s also in the Hermits!) leads the band’s songwriting, but he’s stepping out on his own to work on some solo stuff for our good friends over at Keeled Scales. Today, he shares that first single, and it’s every bit as special as what he’s done in Marmalakes; he has this way of storytelling that makes you feel as if his narration is your own. It’s hard to distance yourself from someone you care about, but man, his voice is one of my favorite ATX sounds…hear it for yourself.
Austin label Keeled Scales are clearly some of our favorite people; they’ve pretty much exploded into one of the best labels in the US, so we’re glad they had a few moments to list out their 10 Most Listened to LPs of 2019!
Be sure to visit their SITE and check out all the great releases; I’d start with this year’s Jordan Moser record, then maybe hop back to that Julia Lucille LP (if you were asking me!). They’ve also made us a great playlist of their favorite tunes from this year, as well as some hits from their artists, all after the jump!
Nathan and I were just discussing some of the original bands we first posted about and have steadily shared over our 10+ year run. After a bit of poking around in older, and terribly formatted posts, our very own Austinite Will Johnson was featured quite a bit in the early days and frequently over the years. Bottom line, we love his music and everything he’s been involved in over the years. Currently Will is going under his own name again with a new album called Wire Mountain coming on September 27th via Keeled Scales. Prior to that new release date, we’ve got this new single “Necessitarianism (Fred Merkle’s Blues)” ready for your ever awaiting ears. It’s a familiar Johnson sound with his ever raspy, haunting vocals, but this time with more of dark, edgy sound to his ever evolving Americana style.
RayRay and I are both huge Centromatic fans, and thus, we’ve closely followed the career of Will Johnson through his various twists and turns. Currently, he’s working under his own name, with a new LP scheduled to drop this fall on Keeled Scales. On this new track, there’s a lot of space in the track, allowing for the delicate flourishes Johnson has seen fill his various projects, be it the tinkering piano or distant-sounding strings. It’s perfect when considering Will’s smoky voice, making room for his vocals to softly churn and roll through the song as he sees fit; he also gets some nice vocal accompaniment at points to add depth to his work. Wire Mountain will drop on September 27th.