Is your answer no? Then maybe you should rethink your listening habits. Hard Left is a supergroup of sorts, though perhaps one most known to that too often mentioned underground world. For my ears, there’s two things going on here that I really like: the band are carrying on the political rabble (some members may have been the first to bring that sound to your ears!) and there’s this guttural punk noise that could incite a circle-pit with your best friends…maybe even a riot. The band’s album We Are Hard Left will be released on May 12th via Future Perfect Records.
Download: Hard Left – Red Flag [MP3]
Sometimes you find a band hitting their stride, and it ends up being the perfect sound to your day. This was much the case when I first tossed on this new song from Loose Tooth; the band are readying the release of their debut Easy Easy East. While the song opens with an alternative rock bend, they turn things on its side, switching the timing of the track, filling it with discordant guitars and emphatic vocals that blast through your speakers…and then they slow it down. It’s an approach that makes the band sound as if they’re going all over the place, but they do it in their own organized fashion…making it a success. Look for their album on April 21st via Fleeting Youth Records.
Download: Loose Tooth – Pickwick Average [MP3]
You follow the right people long enough, and eventually you get turned on to some really good things, thus how I came to discover Toner. They were mentioned in passing as a more crystalline Rat Columns, so of course I rushed to check them out. My two cents might see them playing in the same musical space as early Literature, though with a little bit more sprawling noise to their sound…on this track they rush to the punch, then pull back to close it out. The debut self-titled LP from the project will be out on April 7th, but like I said, you should sample it now.
Our friends at Fleeting Youth Records are on a pretty good roll here in 2015; they’re cornering the market on crunchy guitar pop (sometimes of the nerdier sort). Today I bring you another tune from the soon to be released self-titled Van Dale album; this one features more of the distorted guitar we heard on their earlier single, but there’s a cocksure swagger that inevitably builds into a delicious hook you want wrapped around your ears. You want something you an turn up loud and play air guitar to? Then grab the record on March 31st!
Download: Van Dale – Speak Yellow [MP3]
I first heard from Shunkan last year, and it seems fitting that the band returns now, as there’s definitely a movement to give the lady rockers of the indie world their long overdue credit. In less than two minutes the group cuts through with strong riffs and energy, behind the tenacity of Marina Sakimoto’s vocals pushing forward all the while. The new single’s being released by Art is Hard Records who have commissioned a rad comic to accompany it’s release, so if you’re feeling this tune, then be sure to grab it before the limited run is gone!
Download: Sunken – Our Names [MP3]
Still playing catch-up, and while there’s a definite upbeat bent to get you back up on this Monday, there’s need for some quiet solace today, and it comes via Trans Van Santos. Last week, during our little festival, he dropped his Moon Mirage album, filled with quieted folk ballads offering solemn emotions and intricate notes placed here and there. It’s a place of respite for those looking to escape the buzzing noise of all that surrounds them, requiring a careful listener to fully submerge themselves in the listening experience. It’s available now via Royal Oakie Tapes & Records.
Download: Trans Van Santos – The Flight [MP3]
Over the course of our blog career I’ve always had an ear for DC’s Dot Dash, so I’m happy to share this new power-pop tune that they’ve just released to celebrate their brand new album. It’s a short track, featuring the band’s blend of punk elements (hear the vocals) with classic pop guitar chords. There’s a bit of nostalgia here too, falling somewhere in the realm between old Weasel and late Jawbreaker. Look to pick up their brand new album Earthquakes & Tidal Waves from the Beautiful Music; it’s available for purchase now!
Download: Dot Dash – Rainclouds [MP3]
This new Robot Princess reminds me so much of Los Campesinos, and I’m totally loving it. The tune opens up rather slowly, featuring a male/female vocal duet of sorts, but like all great pop stylings, the band pick up the pace, getting a little bit more anxious in their delivery. It’s a fun tune, for sure, but I feel as if the construction does enough to keep things interesting…always a good sing. Label this as another reason we here at ATH are really anticipating their Teen Vogue LP/Action Moves EP; it’s available on March 24th via Fleeting Youth Records.
Download: Robot Princess – Violent Shooting Stars [MP3]
A year or so ago, I was really into jamming Honduras, but they seem to have been relatively through that time…until this brand new single caught my ear. It fulfills on early promise of blending melodies with this post-rock sensations…the spoken word vocal delivery is a nice twist on the style. Still, the band have a great tendency to get noisy in all the right places, which ends up always keeping their tracks memorable. Look for their debut, Rituals, this June via Black Bell Records.
Download: Honduras – Paralyzed [MP3]
It’s been almost three years since I last wrote a word or two about Portland’s Grandparents, but now that they’r prepping new tunes, seems like the right time to give the band a shout-out. In writing about this tune, part of it’s because of my love of the band’s early work, and the other part is that it seems like the band spent a lot of time listening to Your Majesty by the Anniversary…an album I still think people overlooked. It’s got some space-age keyboards, but a sound rooted in folk/soul, wrapped inside a nice little indie box. Hopefully we hear more soon as the band prep their forthcoming LP.
Download: Grandparents – Kids in the Alley [MP3]