Heyman for more than 20 years now have come to expect, X marks the pop. Not just any old pop, mind you. At least Heyman does and all by himself, playing every instrument. But here he comes again, and if his new album can be faulted for anything, it would be this: At 15 songs, it has a little too much of a very good thing. Instead, the sound is leavened with air, dissonance, and single-note guitar lines — among some of the elements that have distinguished the best all-female or female-dominated alt-rock bands over the years, from Throwing Muses to Sleater-Kinney to Erase Errata.
However, these gals could use more time in their Western Massachusetts woodshed. Still, this Potty has potential. Palindrome : Smiley Face Sticker mrpalindrome. Discs 1 and 2 include performances of all songs represented in the Academy repertoire. Walcott Medicine Show. Remarkably, for me, the single is not the best track on this record. So, do some exploring and your efforts will be well rewarded.
Ever heard of experimental chamber pop? Well that is precisely the genre that Julia Holter occupies on her magnificent third album Loud City Song. A diamond of a record and a unique record for its time. Ah…the Libertines undoubtedly were one of the greatest bands to come from Britain. Really, I know…you probably have never heard of them.
They were paparazzi favorites as the drug addicted lead singer and head Libertine Pete Doherty dated Kate Moss. Out of the ashes of the Libertines , Doherty formed Babyshambles, and since forming in , Sequel To The Prequel represents only the third full length offering from the band. But what an offering. Most importantly, be prepared — Babyshambles is prototypically British and this is a very English sounding record.
So, try to ignore what will be an avalanche of very bad press — Babyshambles are a train wreck at the best of times and as they are habitually late e. However, the results on this record present little indication of the self-created and manufactured road blocks to success of the past, and the end result is brilliance.
King Tuff traverses the same musical territory as Ty Segal but not nearly as prolific. So, what makes Was Dead so special? So few were pressed that it has quickly become a high priced collectible. So, who is King Tuff? Kyle Thomas. With Dinosaur Jr. Was Dead is not as cohesive as the critically acclaimed King Tuff record, but who cares.
Superchunk were always the forerunners of indie music as we know it today. On I Hate Music , Superchunk returns with renewed energy rarely found in bands who have been around as long as they have. Formed in Chapel Hill NC in , Superchunk was synonymous with that scene and despite having found indie cred, they were unable to break through commercially. Like previously albums this is well written indie rock that will make you smile. And this is what is disturbing. How can a band make such an upbeat downer record?
Dedicated to a friend of the band who died last year, the album explores themes of loss e. On balance I think the results show a band coming to grips of where they are now — a little older, a little wiser, and experiencing their own transitions, all with a sort of class. And for the life of me I cannot figure out why they are not huge in America.
Perhaps it is they are from Belfast, Prince Edward Island. Now located in Charlottetown, PEI the band crowd funded this latest offering, My Friends , their 4 th long player the follow up to the Trophies EP and the results are power pop perfection. If you like this genre, then you will love this record. There are some Weezer flourishes here and there as well as some Fountains of Wayne e. My Friends in a less than perfect world should be huge in the U.
And perhaps that is the point. It is hard to garner any acclaim when the sound of the band is derived from more noteworthy acts such as Interpol and Joy Division where the centerpiece is the vocals over an atmospheric beat. However, this album is filled with better songwriting than the two prior efforts which were cringe producing, and the complexity of the songs is vastly approved. It took me a few listens to find the groove so as to truly enjoy the songs. Records to update the sound, and keep it fun.
So, with that, you get a collection of pop punk songs to play at the summer barbecue, not too serious, dance worthy, and after a few spins you catch yourself singing along.
Will this record end up in your collection forever. Likely not. But for a moment in time, its perfect. I dare you not to like this record. Theoretically the band describes their music as vocals over noise, but on first listen you will get the bands deceptive direction — simple melodic rock with stunning vocals. While I enjoy cover songs, it is the rare band that does a good job on an entire record full of them. A stellar example of this is Rod Stewart who has on several occasions served up steaming piles of terrible cover albums which actually!
Sad, really. So, while a little skeptical when one of my long time favorites Tommy Keene announced a couple of months ago that he was going to release a record of covers. So, on Excitement At Your Feet , scheduled to be released later this month, Tommy plays the most unusual set of covers and each case the song takes on new meaning and renewed life, that is if you could even identify the original.
So, give it a spin and be surprised. It seems that Hopeless Records is one of the very few punk rock labels still left alive and kicking in the wake of the recent label catastrophes of the past few years. You will see Imagine Dragons , Lorde just! Really, KROQ has pummeled me into submission. And they are actually proud of what they play. I used to love that station, now it is generic and unlistenable and they overplay everything. Play loud. As we are currently in a discourse about punk rock, it should come as no surprise that you would find Philadelphia based Restorations new album entitled LP2 in the dropbox.
You would never guess that something this warm and sunny would come from the north. This has the same vibe as much of the new Australian pop scene with its bright sparkly boy-girl vocals and simple catchy melodies which are instantly likeable. The trio of James Mascola vocals , Jenni Pleau vocals , and John Doherty guitar, vocals creates alt-county flavored folk rock that will capture your heart. Hopefully a full length will soon follow. As we approach the mid teens, if anyone is paying attention, there is a new garage rock revival in full blossom.
The difference between Drenge and other new-garage revivalists is that Drenge sounds like Gene Vincent and the others sound like the Seeds. This is not a bad thing, only different. British garage rock has a decidedly different flavor than the U. At this point in our relationship you all know that I love this genre of music — from both sides of the pond. What is enjoyable about all of these garage bands is their divergent and unique takes on a genre that is almost 60 years old.
There must be something deep inside man or woman that creates empathy for this sound so that after all of this time and a few generations that this music still resonates. Its hypnotic and sexy, and as performed by Drenge, the music tinged with psychedelic flourishes.
Brothers Rory and Eoin Loveless pummel you with their version of this genre and its catchy as hell and enjoyable. Continuing his updated Little Richard act, Arish Khan , the leader of the Shrines at times containing up to nine members, play a much more traditional version of the garage pop and roll and to good effect.
Mixing punk and soul into their garage mix machine, on their 6 th album, Ooey Gooey Chewy Ka-blooey! Well then this will be a new sound for many, but it ruled the AM radio dial two generations ago.
I had the benefit of 40 years of hindsight, so I could pick and choose the bits I thought would work. This is a fun record and those who were actually around at the time will recognize several songs have elements of the original hits that spawned these 10 originals. The Suburbs were part of the original Minneapolis scene that spawned Husker Du and The Replacements, but their journey was markedly different.
So in they broke up. So imagine my surprise to find a new record after 27 years. Recall that this could be a trend — recall Magazine last year recording an album after 30 years of being broken up? Original guitarist Bruce C. Allen passed away in So, what does a band sound like making a new record after so long? Well, given that they have in the past 27 years played a couple of shows a year in very small venues, remarkable tight and alive.
There is more of a bluesy feel to the record which is essentially a straight rock record. I love the horns on the record which provides energy to a number of the songs which actually jumps with energy. German three-piece Uncle Ho have been around since but albums are few and far between. If you recall the birth of the genre, the goal was to keep it sharp, quick and still be heavy, all of which is accomplished by Uncle Ho on this record.
There is definitely more than a little INXS feeling and vibe on this album. This is a late night party record. If you like those touchstones, you will like this record. Some will note the Jesus and Mary Chain as another touchstone, but what makes this different is that the band makes it all seem fun without being simply derivative.
The synth-pop is lovely and the only real regret is that the auto-tune vocals are a little cold. Formed in college and self-taught musicians, the band, like Savages , from earlier this year, have released a markedly focused and competent record that will also likely end up on several year-end best of lists.
The London based band consisting of a Canadian, German, American and one Brit, do a really good job of resurrecting what made that scene so popular in the first place by staying true to the form and emphasizing the control of distortion and feedback while retaining the vocal nuances of those earlier bands trademark sounds.
Sure, there are some lyrical weakness, but so what. And this album will make you feel good. I have covered a fairly large number of bands this month, but time prevents me from getting to them all. For example, looking back just 5 years to , compare these two top 20 lists from Q Magazine and Spin: Q Magazine Top 20 1.
Recorded through the condenser mic of his trusty Panasonic RX-FT boombox, the album is almost purposeful in its throwback to the raw energy of his earlier work. The country jukebox of your dreams. The passing of decades often elides the full range of music that spun on jukeboxes and the radio. The commercial necessities of CD and now MP3 reissue and oldies broadcasting further reinforce this narrow view with hit anthologies and playlists stocked primarily with superstars.
What quickly recedes from earshot are the lesser hits and journeyman artists that made up the full context of the times. Each disc recreates the sound of its year by placing oft-repeated hits in the company of their lesser-known chartmates, providing context to the former and returning status to the latter.
At the same time, veteran acts were winding down or changing direction. Each disc is housed in a hardbound book with 71 pages of liners, color photos and song notes. John Lennon may have ended up with the larger avant-garde cred, but this fascinating minute documentary suggests it was Paul McCartney who first dug into the underground.
The story begins with the lates emergence of youth culture in the UK, including the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, the expressive freedom and bohemian romance of the Beats, the cutting edge jazz of the s, and the growing influence of art school on music. The program gets to the Beatles at the thirty-minute mark, when John Lennon and George Harrison dip their toe in the underground at a birthday party for Allen Ginsburg.
Blue Stars. Some will note the Jesus and Mary Chain as another touchstone, but what makes this different is that the band makes it all seem fun without being simply derivative. Jimmy Carl Black. Warpaint Live. Nouvelle Vague. So with that somewhat length introduction, there really are a number of spectacular new releases, some of which are already on radio and others which will never find a place in that world but hopefully will find a place in your heart. Good for Sumthin'. Ted Heath.
Postillion-Lied - Various - Sing Mit Mir (Eine Folge Der Schönsten Melodien Von Franz Grothe) (Vinyl, Chuck Daar - A Bright And Shiny Nothingness (CD), Shout - TLC - Fanmail (CD, Album), Chris - Over The Sky (CD), Forward Jah Jah Children - Jacob Miller & Inner Circle - Forward Jah Jah Children (CD)