I still find a place in life to throw in a Boy Least Likely To track from time to time, so it’s great to have a brand new track to throw in the mix. This tune comes with the announcement of the band’s Greatest Hits collection, grabbing all the singles from the four studio records, not to mention a studio version of George Michael’s “Faith,” and the brand new single below. It captures the spritely spirit of the band, always playful, forever infectious. They remain one of those bands that you can’t help but sing along with, even if its as silly as singing about hitching your apple wagon.
There’s always tons of album streams at the end of a week, so I’d like to point you in a direction that might take you off the beaten path…but only go this road if you’re a fan of soft pop rock. The Last Detail is comprised of Mehdi Zannad and Erin Moran (A Girl Called Eddy), and together they’ve decided to give you a collection of swooning pop songs. Several tracks offer that airy introspection, while others have this understated elegance, like “Lazy.” If you’re looking for a hit, give a listen to “Fun Fair,” though I’ll admit I’m partial to “Talk to Me.” If you dig it, the self-titled LP is available today from Elefant.
Melby have been on my radar for just a bit, having signed up to be part of the strong roster over at Rama Lama Records. They’re currently wrapping up their debut full-length for the label, but have dropped up this wonderful teaser to whet our appetites. There’s a dreamy guitar that meanders carefully through the song, watchful of the precise percussive elements (that sound a little like the percussion on “Young Folks”). As the two vocalists share contrasting vocal lines, a keyboard begins to emerge, elevating the track as the guitar tones, also, give the song a bit of a pick up. If the debut LP is this good, they’re knocking it out of the park!
I won’t shy away from a band that makes a humorous Gabriel Garcia Marquez allusion, especially if they’re crafting delightful pop like Attic Lights. The Glaswegian quartet come at you with these hearty harmonies, particularly glorious during the chorus of this tune. I’m also drawn to the way the band expand on the jangling style, adding just a hint of twang and a tinkering piano line; it allows for a more organic sound that really shines on all the melodic moments coming through the speakers. Love in the Time of Shark Attacks will be out in January via Elefant Records, but for now, you can grab the digital single with an exclusive B Side.
Oakland outfit Rays don’t want you to get too comfortable with their “sound,” and they don’t want you to get too comfy with your pop music. They enter the fray here with discordant guitars ringing and a rolling drum beat that sets the mood for a matter-of-fact vocal delivery. But, put your ear next to the speaker, real close like. You’ll hear a slight buzz throughout, an additional layer perhaps added by the bands newest member, keyboardist Britta; it also sounds like horns are brought in as well, so you’re getting far more than you bargained for with your average pop song. It’s frantic, almost spastic, yet wound tightly by superior musicianship so that your ears won’t know what hit ’em. Look for the band’s new LP You Can Get There From Here via Trouble in Mind Records on November 9th.
It’s okay, as I didn’t spend much time with Featherfin and the new album, Miles to Go Before I Sleep…until a slight push of encouragement from Jeremy Jensen of The Very Most. Jeremy plays/sings on one of the standout tracks, but the whole release is just a collection of great voices supporting Featherfin to flesh out the songs. I included “Helen Richey” below, as that’s the song I jumped to first but don’t be afraid to invest some time in listening to the whole thing; it’s a gorgeous collection of pop songs that will guarantee a little bit of swooning goes into your day.
Admittedly, sometimes pop music can get stale or blend in with like-minded artists. Spooky Cigarette is not that band! Their newest song hints at the current underbelly of indiepop, using twinkling guitars amidst a marching rhythm section. But, the vocals of Frank Mindingall have this dreamy yearning, that seems to work separate from the rest of the act. It ends up creating this frantic tornado of pop music that sweeps you out of your chair and into your go-to dance move. There’s just this undying carefree attitude being tossed about that definitely draws everyone into their musical galaxy. Keep an eye out for this San Diego bunch, as it looks like they’re having a hell of a time.
As I am always done for a strong female lead vocal, I’m sharing this new song called “Beat the Heart” from Toronto based outfit Tallies. It certainly sounds like something straight out of the 80s alternative era with vocals that are eerily reminding me of Neko Case. Not sure I could imagine two things which sound more like a perfect union. This is going to be on heavy rotation for me today.
Tallies will release their debut self-titled album on January 11th via Kanine Records.
I’m late to the game on this one, though I’ve known about (and ordered!) this new Comet Gain single for some time, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t encourage you to take a stroll down the road with David Feck and friends. There’s something playful and heartfelt in Feck’s songs, and yet something one could attach to a sort of everyman type; he makes you feel like a friend sharing a story. I love the way he sort of speeds up his lyrics in certain incidents, like he’s racing to get to the point, then drops back to a more casual vibe. I could, and probably more often than not, listen to this band every day. If you’re so inclined, grab the new 7″ from Tapete Records…an LP is to follow next year.
While in the midst of ACL season, we’re still trying to find some good music for you fine people. Leeds based Party Hardly are here to offer up some quality for those of you missing the festival with this latest single “Football”. It’s a sort of playful song which begins simple enough, but hold out for the guitar solo near the end. This one is beautifully crafted and progresses quite nicely.
Party Hardly will release new EP Cycle of Life next month.