Posts tagged ‘Rock’

Battle Cry by Double King

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As Double King swing from the the current indie constructs to 50s rock and back again, all you can do is grab onto the pendulum and enjoy the ride.  With a sentimental tone that carries through every track, Double King‘s version of rock music is all kinds of sweet without losing any swagger.  “Battle Cry,” off their recent EP, Premonitions, has an old-fashioned sensibility even when it injects more visceral guitar hooks to sharpen the edges.  Even if they tried not to, Double King can’t help but charm you with every wistful chorus or reminiscent verse they sing.  Homemade apple pie, you’ve met your match.  Enjoy.

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Hoping for a rebirth of Foreign Born

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It’s bittersweet being introduced to a great band that is no longer in existence.  One of the most enjoyable aspects of being  a fan is the anticipation of new music.  Maybe that’s why I’m a bit cruel today, introducing you to an amazing indie outfit that went on “indefinite hiatus” in 2011.  But after listening to their music, I doubt you’ll stay mad at me for too long.  Foreign Born formed in 2003 in San Francisco, releasing just two albums before the members stepped away to explore separate projects.  Their second album, Person to Person, released in 2009, is a rich, thoughtful album that at times is joyus, solemn, and always moving.  Perhaps the best examples from this stellar record are the ominous “Blood Oranges,” the stirring “It Grew On You,” and the magical “Early Warnings.”  Don’t resist Foreign Born just because we may have gotten our final taste, especially when it tastes this sweet.  Enjoy.

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To Hell With You by Sleigh Bells

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Few people were as excited as I was for Sleigh Bells’ new album, Bitter Rivals…and while I didn’t find the album to be as consistent as their previous efforts, it’s not without its gems.  As the king and queen of noise pop, Alexis Krauss and Derek Edward Miller – the duo that make up Sleigh Bells – have consistently put out tracks that are defiant and coursing with adrenaline.  However, not all of their best work can serve as the soundtrack to a revolt, as is evidenced by “To Hell With You,” off the newest release.  Using the title as a representation of being defensive to protect yourself, “To Hell With You” is a more personal song with  a defined melody that mercifully puts the brash production which dominates the remainder of the album to the side.  Enjoy.

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Yard Rock by Acapoco

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“Yard Rock” by indie trio, Acapoco, opens like a standoff in a Western movie with a rhythmic country riff that moves methodically, building tension slowly.  Except, in most Westerns, the music typically isn’t cut with a hip-hop beat, and then morphing into psychedelic rock. Lea Herring’s breath practically slithers over the track while guitars swell and fade.  One of the standard features of psychedelia is combining sounds and genres that are purposely not meant to cooperate.  “Yard Rock” is no exception, when two-thirds of the way through the song, jagged, industrial electronics more appropriate for a Nine Inch Nails song appear from what feels like some dystopian future to scare us half to death.  In our Western, I think those two cowboys would be trippin’ out right about now. Enjoy.

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Tightrope by Black Taxi

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Frantic, lightning quick, unpredictable, and with no mercy for pedestrians.  Brooklyn’s Black Taxi is not unlike any other taxi you’ll find in New York City.  The punk/pop/rock quartet has been churning out gritty tracks and working the live circuit to the bone since 2007.  Their new EP, Chiaroscuro, will be released this month.  Chiaroscuro, in the art world, is the use of strong contracts in light and dark.  We can look back to “Tightrope,” a single off the group’s sophomore album, We Don’t Know Any Better, for the perfect example of that contrast.  Mixing dark tones and lyrics with an energetic pop sensibility, “Tightrope” shows that Black Taxi is the kind of group that looks at red lights more as a suggestion to stop rather than an obligation.  Enjoy.

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My Type by Saint Motel

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Saint Motel has returned and rather than knocking politely, they are kicking the door down.  If their new single, “My Type” is any indication, it doesn’t look like the LA quartet has decided to tone things down since their raucous debut album, Voyeur, released last year.  With horns ready to blow your eardrums and lyrics that bask in the glory of shallowness (You’re just my type/You got a pulse and you are breathing), “My Type” is a really good time…especially for those with a pulse.  Enjoy.

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Spotlight by Leagues

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Leagues, the Nashville-based trio, must figure out a way to bottle “Spotlight” so I can take shots of it whenever I need a boost.  From the “Hey Mickey” intro to the grungy blasts of the guitars to the youthful proclamations of frontman, Thad Cockrell (I’m never gonna give you up/Spotlight), “Spotlight,” the single from Leagues’ debut album, You Belong Here, released in January, has enough energy to keep you bouncing off the walls and begging for more.  Don’t let the Nashville roots fool you.  No country influence can be found anywhere on “Spotlight,” which melds garage rock and pop into a concoction that will fuel a party well into the morning hours.  Enjoy.  And enjoy.  And enjoy.

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Halcyon by Glass Towers

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The Sydney-based indie pop/rock group, Glass Towers, returns with “Halcyon,” a new single which rivals the energy and joy that came from their breakout hit of 2012, “Jumanji,” off their second EP, Collarbone Jungle.  They haven’t shaken the tropical guitars, but this time around, the foursome aim for bigger and bolder than they did with “Jumanji.”  “Halcyon” is more expansive, with powerful choruses, explosive drums and Benjamin Hannam’s strong falsettos.  Glass Towers just released their debut album, “Halcyon Days” this month and since they are consistently releases songs designed for the summer, it seems like July is perfect timing.  Enjoy.

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The Bad Ones by Blonds

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So what if I’m arriving late to the party?  Sure, Blonds released their ominously impressive debut album, The Bad Ones, in August of 2012, and I’m only now talking about it, but who cares?  (Please say you don’t care.)  Since you don’t, let’s proceed.  This talented Florida duo craft 60s inspired melodies tinged with a bit of darkness.  Picture your nostalgia haunted by ghosts and then recorded with a warped Kubrickian vision. Cari Rae, who sings a few octaves lower than your typical songstress, adds a depth to each track and shakes away any semblance of kitschy pop that The Bad Ones could have been victim to.  With many murky layers, it sounds like Blonds don’t always have more fun.

Best Tracks:

“Run”

“Mr. E”

“Time”

When & Where:

For a nice relaxing weekend at the Overlook Hotel.  I highly recommend the garden maze in the back of the hotel.

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Don’t Miss Out on Misun

484152_443036002437765_386428660_nMisun describes their brand of rock/pop as “aquawave,”  which, after listening to their unique style, must mean 60s west coast surfer swing style mixed with elements of funk and soul.  Now that we have a general idea, let’s dive right in.  Misun is a DC-based trio named after its lead singer, Misun Wojcik, whose pipes are fearless and more powerful than a speeding freight train.  Misun‘s sound is incredibly original and easy to become obsessed with.  Even though their songs are fun with strong and catchy hooks, the true appeal to Misun is that we are dealing with a group of seriously talented musicians with incredible range and the ability to weave multiple genres together into cohesive deliciousness.  In July of last year, Misun released their debut EP, The Sea, which, while impressive, doesn’t capture the band’s vibe as well as the random tracks they’ve released over the past year or so. Where The Sea is extremely polished, their scattered singles are grittier and have a lot more attitude.  Either way, these guys deserve your attention.  Enjoy.

Best Tracks:

“Darkroom”

“Battlefields””

“Harlot”

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