More New Pedro the Lion

Looking towards 2019, this Pedro the Lion album is high on my list of anticipated releases. We get a new single today, and while I love the noisier elements in the background, I’m really struck by the vocal tones. It’s every bit David B., but he’s really pushing his limits to the highest part of his register. I can’t help but to recall American Football or something off Jade Tree when I listen to this track, and that’s not a knock by any means. Just another step in the glorious evolution that is Bazaan; look for Phoenix to drop on January 18th via Polyvinyl. There’s never a bad day when you get a fresh Pedro tune, especially full-band Pedro.

ACL Gimme 5: The Wombats

Austin City Limits weekend one wrapped up on a high note Sunday evening and we have some incredible coverage coming very soon. Prior to our full recap, let’s have another playlist featuring ACL bands which will hopefully improve your dragging Monday. My second ACL Festival featured playlist comes from Liverpool based indie rock band The Wombats. The boys made some interesting choices from the entire lineup and hopefully you can enjoy this short five song playlist. Hit the jump for words from the band and for the playlist.

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Chillwave From Pro Teens

What a perfect day for a little chillwave/slacker pop music right? On this gloomy Tuesday morning, you’re sure to find some enjoyment in this track “Tulsa” from Phoenix based outfit Pro Teens. The guitars are slow, methodic, and full of haze. Add in some perfectly timed drum beats and shiny vocals and you’d have a nice description of “Tulsa”. Check it out.

Pro Teens will release the Philistines EP on NOvember 3rd via Broken Circles.

Upbeat Number from Walkingshoe

walkingshoeTuesdays are my hardest days. I’m always in search of something extra energetic, which is great as this Walkingshoe tune is doing just the trick for me. It’s got this jangling ring to the guitars, kicking off a Rally-era Phoenix feel to it. But, those vocals have that youthful tone that captures the ears of many a listener, and I’m no different. The project is in the final stages of prepping the Hennie and Me EP, which should hit in early January of next year…so now you’ve got something fun to look forward to as Winter creeps in.

Top Songs of 2013

best songs ath 2013We’ve put our pretty little heads together ladies and gentlemen to bring you our favorite songs from this past year.  It was a difficult task with our ever growing staff, but we feel like this list best represents the diverse taste of our staff.  Love it or hate it, it’s ours to call our own.  Hit play and put your head down or dance or shimmmy or drool or whatever works. Most of all we hope you hear something you missed, something you want to buy or something you want to see live.

Scroll past the playlist for full the run of the bestest songs ever this year.

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Great Pop Music From There Is Danger

a1127003112_2There is Danger hail from Phoenix, AZ and they just so happened to get in touch with us recently about some new music they’ve been working on.  Their style is what I might call irresistible to anyone with a pulse for music.  The pop moments as they build and build create some truly superb pop music that anyone could get into.  Our free track below, “Passport”, demonstrates that slow build which leads into a pop guitar riff and beat that could rival the likes of similar big indie names like Grizzly Bear or even Youth Lagoon.  Bold comparisons I know, but the band seems worthy if you ask me.

Others into the music should head over to bandcamp for a pay what you want download of the group’s new LP Living Dreams.


Download: There is Danger – Passport [MP3]



Show Review: ACL Taping of Phoenix (5/6)

I had been on a lucky streak of good crowds for a few shows, so it pains me to ask – Hey Austin, why do ushers have to tell you to put away your phones and shut up at a taping?!?!

Pheonix played a lovely set. Too bad I had to wait for said ushers to get out of the way to see the stage as each of the four people in front of us had to be told to put away their phones one by one. Too bad the superfangirls couldn’t stop informing each other how jealous their friends are that they are at a show they are talking through. It is an ACL Taping. Know your place and watch the show and understand how lucky you are to be there.

I promise to talk about the band after the break (followed by more ranting)…

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Fresh New Indie Pop from The Royal Concept

So, you’ve been missing the absence of Phoenix? Well, The Royal Concept are here to cure your ills, giving you almost the exact same sentiment the French group gave us.  Okay, the more I listen to this, the more I realize it’s almost an exact rip of the aforementioned band, but who doesn’t need something like this to brighten up our day? If you need something to get your feet tapping and your party started, then you’ve come to the right place.  Their debut self-titled EP is out now, so if you like what you hear, get on it.


Download:The Royal Concept – Gimme Twice [MP3]

Am & Shawn Lee – Celestial Electric

Rating: ★★★★ ·

Originally a solo artist, AM hails from America, bringing the diverse sound that you would expect from someone who was raised New Orleans. Producing music steadily built upon the mixture of Americana folk pop as well as various R&B elements, he already had a whole lot of genre conglomeration going on before he decided that he would collaborate with London acclaimed groove master, Shawn Lee, on this album. What one would think is far too many different kinds of sound to be packed into one album, but the result is surprisingly refreshing.

First, let me just say, do not be intimidated by the size of this album. At fifteen tracks, with the medium range time around three and a half minutes, Celestial Electric comes in at around an hour total, which to me, sounded like I was going to be bored by the final track; I mean come on, how much electronic beats can you dish out without repeating yourself? However, I was stunned at the variety and these two’s ability to keep things fresh pretty much consistently through the fifty four minute long album.

With any preconceived notions about electronica, or anything else out of the way, let’s get to the actual music. Celestial Electric opens on an instrumental track, “Dillon’s Song,” which is by no means brief, but also by no means boring. It’s a lovely little groove, which builds the whole way from a funky bass line. The next track is “I Didn’t Really Listen,” another groovy beat that will make you sway in the verses and party dance in the choruses/breaks from the normal serene beat. Overall, it sort of sounds like a mellowed and more electronically driven Phoenix, which is a connection probably made on the vocals, which are most similar.

So, introduced to this massive mix of genres, you continue your trek through these waves of chill, each track inducing some head bobbing, and maybe a little shimmy-shaking—if you’re feeling it especially. For me, someone who doesn’t normally get along too well with dancey music, this feels different. Each song pulls me in, making it hard to skip a song. Sure, there are some real standouts, like the early “City Boy, ” which combines a sweet guitar base with a falsetto chorus that will have you crooning right along. Or even “Promises Are Never Far From Lies,” which is perhaps the grooviest track on here, bringing those handclap sounds and the made for dancing synth meanderings.

All in all, Celestial Electric is as its name would suggest—a stunning and ridiculously enticing slew of electronic beats. Give it a try before you knock it.


Download: AM & Shawn Lee – Dark Into Light [MP3]

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