Dot Dash Drop 16 Again LP

We’ve been covering Dot Dash for years, and now, we have multiple reasons to celebrate the DC band! For starters, they just dropped 16 Again, a nod to the Buzzcocks that hints at the number of songs on the record. The bonus? Well, for the first time, the band’s new LP will be released on vinyl, courtesy of Country Mile Records. For all intents and purposes, this is a best of release, with several tracks from albums I adore like Half-Remembered Dream and Winter Garden Light making the cut. You also get the added bonus of the band covering the Television Personalities‘ “Jackanory Stories,” which is the icing on the proverbial cake. Stream all the songs below and have some fun, then grab it on vinyl!

The Smashing Times Announce This Sporting Life

Feel like I would wrap up my coverage on this Monday with another apology tour, but this time for the Smashing Times who announced This Sporting Life this past Friday. Bloom was one of my favorite LPs in 2022, so to see a new record hit so soon has me salivating here. And, if this song’s any indicator, then we might be in for one incredible musical ride; they cite Television Personalities as a big nod on this go round…I love the jittery nature of their amped up psychedelic pop, riding around with the constant shake of tambourine hitting my ear drums. Oh, and did I mention those sugary vocal harmonies working throughout the tune, creating this gratifying warmth that’s likely to raise the hairs on your arms. K Records will release the new LP on October 25th.

Sonny and the Sunsets Share Pink Cake

While Sonny Smith has been at it for quite awhile, there’s something about his latest work that’s really got my ears perked up for the new LP. For instance, and maybe I’m stretching here, but there’s definitely something in this song that feels like it was penned by Dan Treacy. I’m not sure whether its the way that bits of accompaniment join in out of nowhere or that combo vocal that’s charming in the middle. It could even be that digressing guitar line at 47 seconds squiggling its way right into your ears. So if Self Awareness Through Macrame is going to be Sonny and the Sunsets nod to Television Personalities, I’m absolutely here for that! Rocks In Your Head drop the LP on August 25th.

Dandy Boy Records Release Television Personalities Tribute Comp

Despite a horrible toll on our souls and families, there have been some minimal bright spots in the art world, like friends working together to organize compilations. Last week Dandy Boy Records dropped this incredible Television Personalities Tribute. Not only does the album pay homage to one of my favorite bands, but its filled with artists we’ve covered countless times. As I write this I’m jamming to Jeanines cover “Jackanory Story,” but of course it never hurts to hear the “Silly Girl” cover by Friendless Summer. Plus, you get our friend RE Seraphin, So Cow, and Odd Hope (recent single via Slumberland Records). I could go on and on with all the great tunes, or I could just leave Mummy Mummy Please Look at Me below for you to enjoy today!

Stream the Mick Trouble LP

I reckon that It’s the Mick Trouble LP will probably be a niche record; it will be a hit to those who adore the Television Personalities and other oddball popaholics. But, one thing I hope you agree about upon listening is how timeless these tracks sound. Sure, you could place them in the early 80s UK, but they’re definitely a collection that’s ever as vital nowadays. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that if you’ve listened to any of the art-punk of the last few years, you’re going to be salivating listening to this LP below. It’s 12 absolute hits you’ll want to have in your record collection; I think my favorite tune is “Weekend at the Wag.” Grab it from Emotional Response right now!

Eleventh Hour Adventists Announce New LP

It’s been a wonderful week for Emotional Response Records, what with news bits from Neutrals and Seablite, but new of the an Eleventh Hour Adventists might be the biggest news of the week. The band is made up of Jowe Head (TV Personalities, Swell Maps) and Jasmine Pender (Rotten Bliss), so you’re getting two revered artists who’ve always played by their own rules. This first single is something of a mix between folk ballad and haunted sea shanty, with both Pender and JH trading vocal duties throughout. However, just like their meeting, things are not of the ordinary with these two…skip just to the 4 minute mark (if you need proof) for the brief noise experiment symbolizing the duo’s desire to manipulate tradition. Who knows where their self-titled LP will leave us, but one things for certain it will be anything but boring; it drops on June 7th!

The Charm of Television Personalities

Admittedly, Television Personalities are not a band for everyone, yet I feel as if they’ve informed a lot of the work I adore today. Luckily, the band’s lost album, Beautiful Despair, is being released by Fire Records on January 26th. This song, crafted after an encounter with Evan Dando sounds a bit muddied, almost like a demo, yet like all the best TVP work, there’s a beauty in its imperfections. Oh, and the lyrics, always so clever and hilarious, even when being serious…sitting here I’m just grinning. Dan Treacy was the forefather that every literary indie rocker didn’t know they loved, and hopefully with this release getting some attention, people will start to go back and fall for the band all over again.

Stream Life from The Yellow Melodies

Spain’s The Yellow Melodies have been on my radar for quite some time, thanks to our friend Wally at The Beautiful Music. I think I first fell in love with their tribute album to the Television Personalities back in 2012, but they’re back with a brand new album titled Life. I’ve been jamming it quite a bit the last few weeks, and today you get your chance to get your hands on the LP. If you press play below you’ll find an album filled to the brim with charming melodies and indiepop delights; it’s a complete gem from start to finish. I could go on and on, but who needs my words…you just need the songs below!

Enjoy New Sonny & the Sunsets

sonnyI think it’s time we all give credit to Sonny Smith, leader of Sonny & the Sunsets. For six “official” albums and countless other releases/projects he constantly is redefining his sound. While I have my personal favorites, I’m really stoked on his new approach. On this single, it seems like it’s a crash of new-wave style and the Television Personalities, so I can clearly get behind that sound. It’s interesting, yet still has some of the same stylistic approaches all Smith records wear; it’s great to move and change. His new LP, Moods Baby Moods, comes out on May 27th via Polyvinyl Records.

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Crocodiles – Endless Flowers

Rating: ★★★½☆

A few years back, Dan Treacy of Television Personalities used Crocodiles as his backing band, and that’s when I first caught wind of the group.  I trust Dan, so I scoured the net in search of news, only to stumble upon a group that I thought was unfairly being compared to Jesus and the Mary Chain.  Sure, I see the similarities, but as evidenced by Endless Flowers, the group has a lot more in relation to jangling art-pop than JMC.

“Endless Flowers” does utilize some squalling guitar wailing to kick off the whole affair, but vocally, it harkens back to the musical re-imagining of early 00s band such as Longwave; there’s a simple melodic tone that gives listeners that soft-footed shuffle.  “Sunday” again has that atmospheric guitar sound, so everyone’s going to already toss the JMC comparison back onto Crocodiles, but mentally I’m stripping the sound off these tracks, choosing instead to focus on the bright quality of the vocal delivery; it provides a youthful exuberance akin to Pains of Being Pure at Heart.

As Endless Flowers evolves, you begin to see the gentler side of the band, offering a steadier dosage of pop melody as preferred to noise.  “No Black Clouds for Dee Dee” is definitely a heartfelt ballad, considering the band’s relation to Dee Dee (not Ramone).  It’s a standout song, demonstrating that the group’s not always content with upping the noise quotient. Interestingly, as they begin to unleash a lighter side, they also begin to let that element fully collide with their noisier moments.  It leads to some of the longer tracks, such as “My Surfing Lucifer” and “Dark Alleys,” with the latter remaining as one of my favorite tracks on the record.

They break through it all to wrap up the record quite nicely, giving you a rollicking stomp track in “Welcome Trouble.”  The jagged guitar line cutting in the background just builds you to the raucous stomp that ups the ante during the chorus.  It’s got a bit of post-rock swagger to go along with the energetic chorus, and it definitely helps illustrate the group’s progressive direction. Closing out with the quieter “You Are Forgiven” again finds Crocodiles in a steady ballad form that should leave no doubt that the band is capable of affecting songs without having to fill each track with noise.  Admittedly, the chirping of the birds in the background of the recording might make it seem like a B-Side or an afterthought, but the strength of the song itself warrants its inclusion here.

I can see the Internet still hyping up the JMC connection, but perhaps when I listened to Endless Flowers, I was hoping for more, so I forgave its presence and looked closer at the core content in the songs.  If you approach listening to the latest from Crocodiles then I have the feeling that you’ll understand where I am coming from.  Regardless, I’ve had a lot of fun listening to this whole album, especially when you turn it up to 10 (11 is so cliche).

[audio:https://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Crocodiles-Sunday-Psychic-Conversation-9.mp3]

Download:Crocodiles – Sunday (Psychic Conversation #9) [MP3]

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