Whatever led to the Voxtrot reformation a few years back, well, we’ve all benefitted from it. Be it their reissuing of B-Sides or Compilations, or now, a fresh new tune, I’m so very happy they’ve taken to writing music together again. That said, almost all of them have been working on projects through the years, so they’re songwriting is definitely still sharp. For the opening moment, you get Jason Chronis throwing down a thick bass line that allows Ramesh to weave his melodic wizardry through your speakers. Then, we hit the minute mark and the party kicks off with drums and keys joining in, providing this huge bounce that allows the track to develop its rising action. When that chorus drops, the tune just soars, harkening back to the band’s heyday when they couldn’t help but deliver insatiable hooks. They’ve definitely delivered, with a huge hook-laden ballad that takes their infectious early vibes and brings it into the band’s present. Fingers crossed there’s more on the way!
It’s Friday. Friday’s the new Tuesday, but does anyone even remember Tuesday release days anymore. So, here’s a bunch of stuff I jammed today, and I recommend for you to jam as well. Plus, threw in one of RayRay’s favorite bands too.
Tony Jay – Perfect Worlds (Slumberland)
The Creepy Crawlies – Weeds (Self-Released)
Will Johnson – No Ordinary Crown (Keeled Scales)
Bareknaked Ladies – In Flight (Raisin’ Records)
Just like the rest of the world, the Austin scene is just pushing out new music on the regular, and as we look forward to next week, I’ve got a few rad releases to make sure are on your radar. Obviously, one of the names and singles is already out there on everyone’s radar, but check in on what’s going on in our local scene…got some post-pop punk pop rock (Rival Waves), exploratory indie (Food Group) and some old school punk (Friday Boys)…but it’s all damn good.
Food Group – Thee Fantastic LP
Friday Boys – Depressed Gang Single
Rival Waves – A Meaningless Chaos LP
A Giant Dog – A Daydream Single
I remember when I first stumbled upon Mope City back in 2019 when they were prepping New From Home; I was really taken aback, feeling like there wasn’t anyone creating this sort of slow-core dramatic rock n’ roll. Obviously, I’ve been a bit more in tune with that the last few years, but Mope City is still one of my favorite acts blending these darkened musical narratives. Before they release Population 4, the band have tossed out a little teaser, which feels ominous in its opening moments; the first bit of playful vocal interplay also adds a hint of danger. Still, despite the gloomy nature, the band somehow manage to favor these brief little moments of pop structure that give you just enough of a taste to keep you thirsty for more. The album will be out via Tenth Court later this year!
The Spring generally means you’re just going to have to throw down a lot of money and grab record after record after record, so let us throw a few suggestions, or just give you some great stuff to stream, as its Friday, and who really wants to work on a Friday.
Zack Rosen – SYZYGY (Chimera Music)
A struggling artist gone before his time; these songs remind us of the gifts he left behind.
The Reds, Pinks & Purples – The Town That Cursed Your Name (Slumberland/Tough Love)
No one on this planet is writing songs as powerful as Glenn Donaldson.
Connections – Cool Change (Trouble in Mind Records)
If you need a record without a throw-away tune, this is the one.
The Sprouts – Eat Your Greens (Tenth Court)
Australia has a new supergroup, and you have a new favorite band.
Mary Anne’s Polar Rig – Makes You Wonder (Rama Lama Records)
A shapeshifting masterpiece of pop and rock, like if the YYYs, still had that risk factor.
The Mary Onettes have been part of this site for the better part of a decade; I even spent a good deal of this year hunting down a reasonably priced copy of their self-titled LP, so I’m happy they’re back with a fresh set of tunes. They open things up here with an infectious bounce immediately, letting the guitars drift distantly before the vocals decide they’d like to join up. Honestly, Philip’s lyrical writing isn’t too far off from Glenn Donaldson’s RPP track from last week, calling on artists to take care of themselves while being drawn to create…sadly a sentiment folks like me need to remember. Oh man, this melodic chorus too, is just something special. Stoked to have the Swedish outfit back in any form.
After that brash morning ripper from Shake Chain it feels only apt that I should caress your ears with a little sweetness, this time from French outfit Dog Park, the newest pickup from Howlin Banana Records. Immediately, the guitars grab at you, wrapping you in this blanket that’s warm and dreamy, just hinting at a churning jangle to let you drip off into happiness. Ultimately, the warmth of the song resides in the voice coming through your speakers, allowing you to really immerse yourself in its own brand of decadence…the sweetness notes you might hear today. It’s a fairly new act, so hopefully we hear more real soon!
I’ll be honest, sometimes the Austin scene gets a little stale; it tends to feed off of its own bravado, then implodes to champion what sells…but honestly, its felt mostly safe as of late, until I heard this new track from Neckbolt. The band is comprised of various local figures, and a few out-of-towners, but they’re building this deranged twang-core that feels like an unholy Texan amalgam. Those gritty blues guitar sounds are fuzzed beneath this heavy wash of atmosphere, dripping with tambourine presence. Honestly, it’s like taking acid house vibes from the UK, throwing in sort of the dark experimental side of Liars, then throwing it all on stage in Marfa; it pretty much rules. Midwestern Drawl is out November 5th via Spider Dispatch Unit.
Last week I might have gotten a little carried away; my wife and newborn son were spending a lot of time resting, so I was just hanging out writing about songs all week…something a teacher, soccer coach, dad and label owner typically can’t do. So, this week’s playlist of last week’s hits might be a little longer than usual, but you’re going to be all the better for it. I hope you have a wonderful Monday my friends, and enjoy the jams here!
If you follow our site, or pop in a time or two, you might be aware of my affinity for Finnish tunes, mostly due to my friend Nick over at Soliti. Keeping an eye on that scene, I came across The Here Todays, who’ve just released this stellar new single for you fans of the modern shoegaze. Everything about this song just feels heavy, like the weight of the world crushing you, or in my case, a 3 year old sitting on your chest; the drums are pounding, smashing the sonic walls while your hit with wave after wave of heavy distortion from the guitars. It’s meant to disorient you, until the hauntingly soft vocal notes come and tie you to this Earth, tethering you to wade through the perfect balance of noisy ambiance and cool melody. Enjoy.