Hemhora and the Glass Band is a conglomerate pop group, made up of various members of Heligoats and Hungry Mountain. Together, these members are crafting dramatic pop music, built to maximize emotion for every listener. How’s that done? Well, you’ve got to take care with the song’s craft, from rolling notes of bells or strings being carefully plucked, it all builds upon itself, allowing the vocals really bring things home. Speaking of the vocals, they walk the fine line between Eef Barzelay and Travis Morrison, so it has this traditional folk feel with just the slightest bit of oddity, continuing the band’s draw for listeners. You’ll find enjoyment below, and if that is indeed the case, then might you consider picking up their Helix Pattern Blues via Greyday Records.
If Tullycraft isn’t on your radar, and you consider yourself a pop fan, please go back and revisit the band’s catalog (I’m particularly fond of Disenchanted Hearts Unite). Now, more to the point is the charming new single they just dropped to celebrate their forthcoming album, The Railway Prince Hotel. It comes with a wonderful animated video, matching the playful mood of the track itself. Sean offers up the majority of the vocals, but don’t worry, as the sound wouldn’t be complete without Jenny in there to make sure Sean doesn’t get too much of the pop sensibility credit. Couldn’t think of a better way to wrap up a week than with this here tune; look for the new LP in February via HHBTM.
I was tempted to write this entire post in Spanish, but the red lines from my spell check were driving me crazy. This is the second single from Juan Wauter‘s new album, La Onda de Juan Pablo, with this song revolving around a stop in Mexico City. If you’ve spent any time in the city, or the country, you might recognize some of the signature sounds filtering through Wauter’s tune, like the stellar accordion; it also just feels like being in that city, lively and calm all at once. While the whole album is in Spanish, you’ve got to give to Juan for going out on a limb and tracing his Latin roots and spinning it into accessible tunes. The new album will drop at the end of January via Captured Tracks.
Portland’s Shadowgraphs are about to drop their newest album this Friday, but what better time than the present to drop another single from that LP. In my repeated listens, I can definitely hear the band’s psychedelic influences shining through, particularly in the last few moments of the video. But, peel that away for a minute and imagine someone like J. Spaceman jamming out with a huge dollop of pop sensibility, and you’ll have a perfect way to picture the band. There’s this natural driving force behind it, with the vocals constantly seeming like they’re trying to escape the video through your speakers and slink into your living space. Another Time hits on Friday via Golden Brown Records, so grab it while its hot.
Earlier in the year I wrote a lot about Outerhope‘s newest album Vacation; it was this sublimely rewarding piece of ethereal pop music best absorbed in solitude. For me, that meant the minimal notes crept under my skin, and the melodies often created these out of body experiences that made the Lp perfect for escapism. Today the band share the video for “Airways”; the video features beautiful natural footage juxtaposed with a pre-apocalyptic setting. The song itself is one of the more subtle tracks on the record, always building and moving beneath the speakers. If you love it, go grab a copy from Shelflife.
This year’s ACL featured Durand Jones and the Indications; I tried to hype it up as much as I could…though I still feel like folks missed out. Luckily, one of the tracks they played live, featuring drummer Aaron Frazer on lead vocals, is making it onto their next album, American Love Call. This single’s blown up really quickly, so odds are everyone will be on Durand and the band; I think those of you who like the classic R&B sounds will love this more than any other modern act spinning a similar style. Frazer and Jones play off each other so well in this track that its hard not to be taken aback. You can grab the LP next March via Dead Oceans/Colemine.
Jess Ribeiro is one of the great voices coming over from Australia, though she perhaps doesn’t get the deserved buzz that some of her fellow songwriters do. I’m hoping this video starts to make its way to our neck of the woods, creating some new friends for Jess in the States. The guitar on this tune is understated, lightly strummed behind the front of the mix, which is obviously reserved for Ribeiro’s striking voice. At times, she’s got this smoky chanteuse vibe, seducing your ears…though I think one of this song’s highlights comes just before the 2 minute mark with the lines “we did it over and over” before stretching for higher tones. This is Jess’ first new bit of music since 2015, so let’s cross our fingers a new LP is on its way.
Earlier this year, Dylan Mondegreen released the new album, A Place in the Sun. Like the previous releases, it balanced understated pop with slightly folk leanings. Today we’re pleased to share with you the video for “Sunless Summer,” one of the LP’s standout tunes. The video is this beautifully soft visual, following around a female protagonist, seemingly waiting for the return of a loved one. I love how there’s this slight haziness to everything, which matches the emotional pull of the track itself. If the video or the song appeal to you, be sure to grab yourself a copy of the album right HERE.
While Jackson Macintosh‘s debut solo effort has been out for a minute, he definitely needs some revisiting with his latest single/video. It’s this sort of slinky, synth-driven pop song where Macintosh can turn his vocals into hook-laden gold. I love the soft electronic chorus, smoothing out the track in the perfect way. The guitar sounds throughout are understated, but they give the listener the perfect chance to kick up those heels in a danceable fashion. It’s the sort of dreamy pop making all the waves with the kids, so why not slide into it; My Dark Side is out now via Sinderlyn.
It’s been a hot minute since we’ve heard from Juan Wauters; his last release was back in 2015 with Who Me. But, worry no more, as he’s finished up some traveling through Latin America and will return with La Onda de Juan Pablo. His travels began in Puerto Rico, where the following tune was begun; he was struck by a couple of characters playing boleros, thus crafting his own. It immediately has this almost traditional light-hearted vibe, particularly in the supporting vocals. You’ll also note that Wauters is singing entirely in Spanish, something that continues through the whole of the new album. I know I’m fond of the style, and if you find yourself in the same boat, look for the new album on January 25th via Captured Tracks.