Last Week’s Jams (7.8 – 7.12)

After a brief vacation, I apparently over-indulged while RayRay was out on the town, hitting up nearly 30+ songs, and some of those, like the premiere we ran for legendary Refrigerator, aren’t even on streaming platforms, so you have to go find em’ on the site! Austin had a big week, with acts like Club Coma, Liz Burrito, Voxtrot, Font and Letting Up Despite Great Faults throwing out some new jams. But, don’t think San Francisco/Oakland were game for being overshadowed, with Tony Jay, Sad Eyed Beatniks, Chime School, Fake Fruit and Parallel all dropping new jams. So, this is nearly 2 hours of really really great music, so sit back, press play, and escape the madness, albeit for a brief moment.

Merce Lemon Shares Backyard Lover Video

We’ve had Merce Lemon high on our radar for some time here at ATH, and with her most recent work, it seems like the rest of the world is catching onto that vibe too. That star’s only going to rise when folks listen to “Backyard Lovers,” the latest single from the forthcoming Watch Me Drive Them Dogs Wild LP. Through this song, the absolute vocal control is stunning, particularly the way the voice can rise up to match the force, yet pull it right back to suck you into the intimate experience between artists and listener. But, there’s definitely plenty of force, with Merce letting loose a powerful “you fucking liar” before lighting up the speakers with a ripping guitar solo that jams the song to a close. Watch Me Drive Them Dogs Wild will win you over when it drops on September 27th via Darling Records.

Last Week’s Jams (3.25 – 3.29)

A lot of really great stuff popped up last week, and we did our best to be on top of as much as we could, though admittedly, it’s a bit of a busy season on our parts (life wise). We were stoked to hear some stuff from Austin homies in the Juniper Berries and Strand of Oaks, both offering great new music you’ll love. Zero Point Energy dropped another tune from their exciting debut, as well as new music from Writhing Squares that sees them stretching our expectations of their sound. Plus, got to finally circle back on some things that had been waiting, like Crumbs, System Exclusive and Climax Landers. Oh, and we ran a Rock n Recipes with our friends in Outer World, so be sure to check it. A few acts like Goosewind and Jetstream Pony didn’t have their stuff up on streaming, so be sure to give it a listen if you’d like.

Merce Lemon Shares Will You Do Me a Kindness

I’ve been covering Merce Lemon for several years now, and when the band into town for “not SXSW,” they were definitely one of the top artists I had to catch live. They didn’t disappoint one bit, and now they follow that up with this enchanting ballad that might just break you. There’s this majesty in Merce’s voice, particularly as she curls some of the notes around the edges of the chorus here; I think its a hugely powerful turn of notes that stands alone in its power. Luckily, the arrangement doesn’t hurt either, with fiery solos occasionally ripping through the light strumming, blossoming into this huge feeling you won’t soon forget. This tune brought to you courtesy of Darling Records.

Villagerrr Announce Tear Your Heart Out

I’m sure everyone is clamoring to post that Real Estate tune right now, which is why I wanted to draw your attention to new music from Columbus’ Villagerrr. Today comes news that they’ll be working with Darling Recordings for Tear Your Heart Out, with a new single that features my personal favorite Merce Lemon. When listening through, I get stuck in various moods, as the song’s vocal work definitely feels wistful and intimate; it’s what draws you into the core of the track. In that, I was completely caught up, but when trying to focus on the musical side, there’s this sort vibrant playfulness, particularly in the way the crystalline guitar notes jut up against the steady march of the percussion. Really looking forward to hearing the whole LP; it drops March 22.

Bandcamp Friday Recommendations

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.

Merce Lemon Announces Moonth LP

Admittedly, Merce Lemon was not a name I was familiar with until earlier this year when Crafted Sounds sent the “Moon (Demo)” our way. But, that’s one of my favorite tracks of this year, so to have her turn around a few months later with a collection of new songs is quite exciting. I’m fascinated by how full this song feels, despite falling beneath the 1.5 minute mark. Opening with Lemon’s voice offers that songwriter vulnerability, and there’s almost just a hint of twang hanging on the notes. Soon, a steady percussive element breaks the track open, giving it sort of this rambling pop feel, raising the song’s bar even higher. Short, sure, but another bit of endearing spectacle. Look for Moonth on August 14th.

Merce Lemon Announces Ride Every Day

Up until a few weeks ago, I hadn’t heard of Merce Lemon, but our friends over at Crafted Sounds tossed us a few tunes to turn us on to her before the announcement of Ride Every Day. It’s a compilation tape taking a few of her releases, adding some bonus material and a polished version of this really striking tune below. It’s one of those songs that seems so simple in its construction, but it feels like a gut-punch, just hitting you right where your emotions are. Mostly just vocals and a light strum, with some added key notes in there, yet you will keep coming back to this song before the day’s up, I swear. This will be out on March 14th via Crafted Sounds.

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