It’s that weird time of the year when everyone pretends that they stop writing music for a few months so we can browse the list of Best New Artists, or whatever. We do it too, though I’ll probably keep writing about songs if folks keep sending them to me. But, before the year “wraps up” and stuff, here’s a few more new records to listen to today that you’ll hopefully enjoy! Note: I included a few from last week, because last week I ran an Austin-centric streams post, so booyah!
Wurld Series – The Giant’s Lawn (Meritorio Records/Melted Ice Cream)
We’re still a few weeks away from the release of Oyster Rock, but boy oh boy do you need to hear this new single from the Brights. You’d be excused if you expected this hard bouncing bit of rock n’ roll swagger, as the tune opens up with this bounding bit of pub piano; I totally expected a Nick Lowe twist to creep in here. That said, the vocals come in with this Aussie cool, or maybe even Cali cool, feeling like a crisp bit of sea spray landing on you after a warm walk on the beach. Thinking through the previous singles on the record, this might be the one that feels the most aligned to all my tastes, kicking in this bit of indifferent cool that makes the song inescapable. Meritorio Records releases Oyster Rock on December 1st.
It’s Friday, and while I’m here trying to wake up for a late night of Levitation, I know there are three pretty near perfect records for you to soak up today, all with different sonic appeals, meaning you get a little bit of everything if you wanna win!
Red Pants – Not Quite There Yet (Meritorio Records)
This is a record that lands somewhere in the land between Sonic Youth and Low, but if you had recorded that record in hopes of offering a solitary listening experience. The more time you give this LP, the more its secrets are revealed.
The Louisiana band is crafting post-punk like no other; they fill their songs with quick turns and sonic changes, each song refreshing in its ability to shift gears in an instant. Oh, and with all the weirdness, it still comes off catchy in the right spots.
Honestly, its been a minute since I’ve had this much fun listening to a record. It pulls in psychedelic nods with this punk ethos that gets mixed up in electronic textures that continue to push the envelope of what is and isn’t “indie rock.”
Don’t let the first 50 or so seconds of The Maureens new single fool you, for as pretty as it may be, the Dutch outfit are brandishing their rock wares on the latest single. When the tune kicks in near the minute mark, it does so with a full on punch, the sort one would expect from only the best Teenage Fanclub tracks, brandishing huge riff-driven guitar pop with melodic centerpieces. That being said, the group do pull towards the more melodic, especially when there’s a explorative breakdown in the middle; they filter in a bit of twanging guitar that rides on some “oohs,” which is an absolute charming moment. In January, the band will release Everyone Smiles via Meritorio, so you’ve been put on notice!
I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to the new album from Red Pants; Not Quite There Yet seems like the perfect record to wrap up my year end list. For me, the record operates in between the lines of really incredible melody, with hints of fragility, like on this latest single’s vocals. And, while that closeness seeps through your speakers, there’s still a bit of a heavy edge to the playing, providing all you old punks with the ability to grasp the straws of cool. Plus, the DIY aesthetic from Lambeth and Nekola carries such sincerity in all aspects (music, videos, artwork) that it’s definitely refreshing in a time when we throw that word around too often (myself included!). Not Quite There Yet is out on October 27th via Meritorio, and it’s going to rule!
In the PR for this latest Wurld Series, this new single is referred to as an “earthen ear wyrm,” and its definitely playing into that concept, particularly in the opening two minutes of the track. To me, it feels as if you’re walking through a Renaissance Fair as a merry band of revelers does their best to cover their favorite Clientele songs. The psychedelic guitar churning atop the primal rolling drums give off this hallucinatory quality that’s definitely taking you off into some spiritual landscape that’s filled with the bewilderment present in the video below. Stick around for the incendiary guitars at the 2 minute mark. The Giant’s Lawn is out November 17th via Meritorio and Melted Ice Cream.
Trickling in over the weekend, you’ve got to be sure you spin this new track from The Brights. Having announced their debut LP, the group add another whimsical pop tune to their repertoire, hopefully enticing you to jump on board. For those that live somewhere in the Good Morning/Alex G realm, you’re definitely going to find that same gentle approach to the songwriting; I think there are some brighter melodies here, particularly as the vocals rise, only to drop in with a thud from the musical element. It’s weird, but for some reason, this Aussie bunch really feels like down-home Texans, just playing light guitar pop with a huge expanse behind them. Give a spin, then grab Oyster Rock from Meritorio Records on December 1st.
In the middle of the week, you’ve got to be sure you press down on those pedals and stomp away with snappy drum licks and bursts of sun, just like Model Shop have done on their brand new single. The Seattle outfit features former members of Math and Physics Club, and today comes news that Check the Forecast will be the follow-up to their debut EP. They’re brandishing a classic indiepop sound here, working back and forth between pleasant melodic work and hard-hitting riffs that have you pounding on your steering wheel as you sing your way to work. Glad to see them group back and rocking in fashion. Their new 7″ will be out via Meritorio Records on November 10th.
For all those that thought lo-fi bedroom pop was meant to merely bring its charms to your headphone experience, Red Pants are here to prove you wrong; their magical songwriting has allowed for the world to move in reverse…at least if this video is to be believed. Fun and jokes aside, there’s nothing more gratifying than listening to this new track from the duo’s forthcoming LP. I was in love with the guitar tones instantly, hitting those slightly discordant notes that transform into melodies as they sneak inside your ear canal. But, going through on repeat again and again, those guitars notes didn’t do nearly as much for me as the vocals in their rising tones. Listen for the lines of “Do you want to/do you want to come home” and tell me your not transported to some otherworldly cocoon of warmth; that moment, for me, felt like I had come home, musically speaking. Then, you get an extra boost at 2:21, where the song ramps up the punch and drives you to the promised land. You won’t regret one minute with this song, or one minute you spend with Not Quite There Yet; it’s out on Ocotber 27th via Meritorio Records.
For those following the nerdy side of Australian pop music, The Small Intestines is one of the most anticipated releases dropping before the year is up. Featuring members of Chook Race and Peach Happening, with a nod to Go-Betweens, The Bats, etc, you’re guaranteed to fall in love with every song. But, before they drop Hide In Time, they’ve got one slow-churning hit to satiate you pop fans. I love the breeziness of the tune, particularly the way lead guitar seems to sway back and forth between your ears. There’s a nice little sugary moment in the chorus when you get a little of a swell in the vocals, leaving you with the perfect bite of Aussie guitar pop. Hide In Time is out September 29th via Meritorio Records/Lost and Lonesome.