Once the angular flirtation comes through, Fake Palms begin to toy with dueling guitar lines; they both operate in a similar fashion, though they’re unfolding feels like its call and response, setting up the anxiousness of the tune. That’s until you hit the 1:07 mark, and suddenly the melodic underbelly is unfurled in your ears, peeling back the sharpness for just a minute. Of course, the song quickly races back into its more spastic nature, shifting from one ear to the other with angular riffs and tight cymbal work. It’s a welcome return for the group, who with it, announce their new LP, Lemons, which hits in the fall via Hand Drawn Dracula.
Feel like we needed just a little more bounce to the day, thus far, so we’ve got this brand new track from Toronto’s No Frills. The band have just dropped their Downward Dog LP, and this track has this rad little guitar uptick that just makes the shoulders shimmy and the toes tap. I was already hooked on the playfulness of the tune when it hits the 1:20 mark; here, the song sets up for a nice emphatic burst of sunshine pouring through your speakers, giving you one of those clich warm fuzzy moments. If you’re digging this, be sure to check out the whole LP, offering up equally rewarding moments.
I’m really interested in what Fortunato Durutti Marinetti brings into the indie sphere, as he’s crafting music that certainly seems to stretch our expectations. His vocals and the folk/balladeer style definitely recall some of the more modern folk tendencies. But, that being said, the way he’s crafting it feels like he’s creating these little mini symphonies. This single below has great musical arrangements, and tons of open space for the song to sort of stretch out, focusing on the musical journey rather than just providing us with the immediacy we’re used to on our end of things. If you’re as intrigued as I am, perhaps grab Memory’s Fool from Bobo Integral before it drops on March 18th.
The air in Austin got a little crisp overnight, and with a holiday break on the horizon, well, my students are mentally already there. So, to prepare myself, I needed something a little soothing and calm, which is great because I’ve been sitting on this great new His His tune for a few days now. There’s something in the guitar play that recalls Kings of Convenience, but it also has this unique knack of adding in these little bedroom pop details that elevate the tune. It’s one of those songs you just want to sit with for a bit, kind of ride out the storm of your life with the track lurking in the background.
Well, I wanted to start off your day with something a little dark, something that maybe feels a bit drab in its initial presentation. Sina‘s vocals kind of feeling like they’re hanging in there, just barely holding on, and the musical orientation feels anxious and almost sad. It creates this cavernous world to welcome you, a place where you can just come as you are, and come to terms with the person at the table. But, for me, the curious attraction comes in the moments in between the solemnity, the moments where the songs brings in a slight bounce; it seems like Sina’s promising that there’s still room to pick ourselves up and bounce back. Let’s just hope the world gets that message. You can find this tune on the new Shame LP.
After much success with their ATH approved Get Bleak EP, Ducks Ltd. found themselves a new home on Carpark Records, and now they’ve got a brand new record on the horizon. Our first listen has them channeling all things Aussie pop (despite haling from Toronto), with those quickly jangling strums dissected by a more angular guitar; the song runs at full speed instantly, pushing the pace and the melody from the get-go. I love how both sides of the vocals seem to have this wanderlust to them, from the indifference style on the verses to the more exuberant feel of the chorus; they always feel like we’re out there searching for joy together. If you didn’t listen to me with Get Bleak, then perhaps Modern Fiction is the one that will convince you of this band’s greatness; it drops on October 1st!
This Friday we’ll be treated to the much anticipated debut album from PACKS, but before we get there, we should just indulge ourselves in one last little grungy ditty; I mean you can never really get enough of this lot if you ask me. They crank the song out in under 2 minutes, so they get right to it, with Madeline teasing the listener along over a mild guitar before the rest of the band drops in, and things get turned up into a classic pop rocker. I think one of the things I love about this band is how quickly they go from rock to really subtle pop nuances, even if they last for a mere three seconds, like Madline’s annunciation of “hand” at the 1:17 mark. Just good old clean fun. Take the Cake is out Friday via Fire Talk Records.
For many of us, “Silvertongue” is our first listen to PACKS, and what a way to start things off! It’s 3 minutes of fuzzy riffs and cooled vocals that announce the band as an act we should all have on our radar this year. Personally, I love the space the song gives to the guitar work, letting it ring out in various spots to keep the edge of the song there as singer Madeline Links lets her voice fade atop those riffs; it just gives the song more of a distinct feel, like it’s not being dialed in with a formula. My two cents anyways. Plus, better news is Take the Cake, the debut LP, will be out on May 21st via Fire Talk/Royal Mountain.
One of the hottest labels last year, at least in consistency was Fire Talk Records, and they’re back this year with a new LP from PACKS on the horizon. The first single from the Toronto outfit is a fairly stripped down affair, at least in the front of the mix. Songwriter Madeline Link spent much of last year holed up and penning tracks, many about the loss of freedoms so many of us face during this on-going pandemic; that informs the attitude with this quieted intimacy, though the arrangements behind her add buoyancy to the song, filling out the space behind her voice with these distorted textures. We’ll have more on the new LP when the time comes!
Phew, what a week/month it’s been for everyone here in the ATH offices. As we near the end of what seems like an endless 2020, it seems appropriate that I would seek comfort from our Canadian neighbors of the north. Offering me this comforting sound today is Toronto based outfit Hollow Graves and their bright and warm new tune called “Far Out Summer”. With shoegaze rooted in the core of the song, it can certainly be a bit hazy, but I’m loving that the band has really brightened things up bouncy guitars and an almost airy feel. It’s as though the Beach Boys wrote a popping shoegaze song.