Browsing Category Tracks

Hobby – “The Humblest”

Growing out of the remains of Deaf Parade, Parisian band Hobby comes into their own on a debut solo EP that’s chomping on a couple of great sounds. With a jangled backbone and a taste for fuzz pop, the band rips into “The Humblest” like an overlooked cut from the DGC demo bin. The song trips over itself with a tangle of guitars but settles into a slow-simmer Pavement patter that explodes with a rather ravenous chorus that melts the paint at the top edges of the room. While the band definitely owes a few debts to the class of ’94 on this one, they do it with a love that comes through earnestly. The song’s just the tip of things on their upcoming 7” from Hidden Bay / RDS REC. Out on Dec 11th.





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Donald Miller – “The Man In The Well”

While Miller might be known more for his reality shifting psychedelics in Borbetomagus, on his latest LP he’s stripped all the way back, delivering a suite of 12-string rambles that throw the Takoma school through a feverish wind. There’s a blues base in “The Man In The Well,” but Miller isn’t content to simply lean on virtuosity and let the ripple ease into the the banks of the river. His works bend and scrape at the traditions that he so clearly loves, with tracks on the upcoming Transgression!!! dedicated to Davey Williams, Jack Rose, and intriguingly enough Squeaky Frome alongside a cover of Charlie Patton. The new LP finds a home with acoustic haven VDSQ and its rapped in a rather striking cover from SEEN studios, which only adds to the charms. The LP finds its way out February 5th.



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Pearl Charles – “Imposter”

The new LP from Pearl Charles keeps giving with a third single out this week that’s splashed with just a touch more AM gold than on the past two. Still weathered with the California cool that permeates her new album, the new song bounces on a sunny beat but gets caught the heartsick swirl of keys, a vertigo tug of guitars, and Pearl’s sighed vocals that betray a lostness that’s easy to relate to. The song’s based in feeling like a fraud, sure to be found out at anytime by peers and friends at any moment. The harsh self-reflection and knowing doubt bump against the song’s seeming calm with a slight tension, though this still fits nicely into the album’s wood paneled wonderland.

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Henrik Appel – “Wake Me Up”

PNKSLM is always a solid bet for garage pop and psych sway and this new cut from Henrik Appel is no exception. Falling into the garage camp, the label starts out 2021 strong. The former Lions Den member, Appel, struck out solo on an LP in 2018 and his sophomore step expands on some of his whims from the LP that crept away from his former bandmates. There’s a low-slung quality to “Wake Me Up,” a simmering just below the surface that never quite explodes through but rocks back and forth with a quiet cool. The song saws on a gritted riff, but sweetens itself with some harmony vox and a skid of sax as the song slides to a close. The label’s been making a name for itself with sour-pop gems like Cherry Pickles and ShitKid and this one files in quite nicely alongside those others. The new LP arrives January 8th.




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Chronophage – “Any Junkyard Dreams”

A nice surprise out of Austin’s Chronophage springs up today. The band’s last LP Prolog For Tomorrow checked a lot of boxes in the scuffed indie bin a couple of years back and news of a follow-up LP heading out on November 23 reared its head today. The new LP sees the band scrub a bit of the crust off of their sound, but the fidelity bump doesn’t dimmish their acerbic bite. First cut, “Any Junkyard Dreams” is brittle with shards of post-punk guitar butting heads with quite a cushy chorus. The tension between the guitars that seem about ready to break and Sarah Beames’ vocals drive the song deep into the listener’s skull. If you missed out on the band last time around, this is a perfect time to jump onto the wagon before The Pig Kiss’d hits in a few weeks.





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Matt Lajoie – “Kuchina’s Dance”

Matt Lajoie announces the third in a planned series of five records focusing on elemental forces, just a few months after the cooling force of Everlasting Spring. The focus this time shifts from water to fire, though in the true spirit of Lajoie, the focus here is on warmth and light rather than the destructive force of the lit flame. The first cut to reach the world’s ears is “Kuchina’s Dance,” a meditative, circular piece that dances through the speakers with the dazzling intimacy of a candle’s flame. Lajoie and Flower Room have proven indispensable over the last few months, offering up a cocoon of calm during times that are anything but. The record lands on shelves January 21st and as usual he’s got a handmade version as well that’s limited but lavish. While its always a rush to light up some of these Bandcamp releases, this one might help us all slow down a bit today and just live in its embrace for seven minutes or so.




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Sean Thompson’s Weird Ears – “Sun’s Hiding”

Oh, quite nice. This is something a bit different from Sean Thompson. The Nashville songwriter has been clamoring up the cosmic vine lately, but the second volume of Weird Ears For Weird Times offers a narcotic, nocturne vision of slinking pop with ice in the veins. The song’s anchored by Thompson’s reedy delivery, roughed at the edges but with a feeling of road wear seeping in between the sighs. Anchored by a slouched organ exhale and boasting some nervy guitar lines that are as far from the silvered cosmic vein he’s been harboring than could ever have been expected. The single is paired with a slightly more straightforward ramble under the name “Distraction,” but the songs make for a nice pair from a songwriter who has only been getting better these days. New LP is reportedly on the way soon, but this should tide ya over until then.




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Civic – “Radiant Eye”

Hey its Bandcamp Friday once again, which means that the inbox is stuffed to bursting and I’m desperately trying to parse through the best of the glut. Aussies Civic return today with a new double-sided scorcher that puts their frenetic brand of punk at the forefront and adds a nice touch of horns. Not something I was expecting to enter the Civic arena, but “Radiant Eye” torches through the speakers with a whiff of ozone on the air and the band follow it up with a beaten and battered cover of The Creation on the back, making the familiar rally cry from Rushmore feel like less of a ‘60s jangler and more of a sonic scorcher in times when sitting still truly feels like a luxury. If you’re throwing around a bit of monetary support today, you could do worse than to give Civic some coin for this AA vision of punk bash.




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Trevor Beld Jimenez – “Comeback Kid”

The past few years have been a blessing of cosmic country, often leaning towards an embrace of the past — landing between the Burritos’ blurred swagger and Crazy Horse’s toughened wander into the rough hills. Veteran songwriter Trevor Beld Jimenez slips between the salt-scrubbed breezes to bring a vision that’s pulled away from this Kodachrome prism of ‘70s country rock. He’s still reaching into the auburn arms of the California sun, but this is steeped in a more AOR, AM radio softness. “Comeback Kid” turns away from the glare that others embrace to find itself aligning with an unlikely love of Bread and America. The former’s Baby I’m-A Want You feels like it’s left a particular impression on Jimenez. As a contributor to several RSTB faves (GospelbeacH, Dios, Fruit Bats) Trevor’s no novice when it comes to the sounds that touch the wavy end of the country spectrum, but the clarity and care he imparts to the song gives a new life to the rock radio staples that sometimes wind up maligned in hindsight.

The song appears on the upcoming I Like It Here which ropes in a large roster of impressive talent Clay Finch, Pearl Charles, Nelson Bragg, Bob Glaub, Kacey Johansing, and Eric D. Johnson. The record lands November 13th on Curation Records.



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Jason Henn – “A Straighter Line (Ballad of JPHS)”

Following up on Honey Radar’s great LP from last year and a retrospective of their Chunklet singles earlier in this year, the band’s Jason Henn knocks out a solo LP for Cara Records. The bandleader has issued a few CD-rs for Chunklet collatortor Third Uncle Records and a self-released lathe, but for all purposes this marks his first LP under his own name. The songs retain a lot of the immediacy of recent Radar material — pitting a psych-pop penchant against his ability to knock out GBV-style fuzz nuggets that get lodged in the head like static-sore jingles. There’s plenty to love in on the album but the immediacy of “A Straighter Line (Ballad of JPHS)” exemplifies what makes Henn’s songwriting stick. There’s a breezy pop to the track but its hidden under the transistor vocals and the noise-pop barrage of guitars. Yet, its never abrasive, just a solid swinger with a bit of grit to it. The full LP doesn’t disappoint, with 10 more kickers in a similar mold. Jazz Pigs In High School is out today.

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