Browsing Category Tracks

Ashtray Navigations – “Spray Two”

Last year Ashtray Navagations hit hard with their sprawling drone-psych record A Shimmering Replica. Now they’re back to hammer the psych nail even harder with To Make A Fool Ask, And You Are The First for the ever excellent Blackest Ever Black. The first taste from the record is a big one, the sprawling, side-long epic “Spray Two.” The track builds almost twenty minutes of pulsing, hazy dronescape flecked with piano improvisations. Screw releasing singles, Ashtray Nav knows when its time to drop a Tangerine Dream epoch on the public and let them sort out their headspace through glycerine tones and creeping dread. If the rest of this album stacks up (and I’m betting it might) this is definitely a force to be reckoned with in 2016.


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Shy Mirrors – “Cements”

Swedish export Mike Downey has found a similar muse in the short form pop-punk that drives Tony Molina to bash out jingle-sized nuggets of fuzz pop that are steeped in their love of Guided by Voices and, well, slightly less Weezer than Mr. Molina seems to favor. However, the same power pop elements and ’90s overtones are in place, just slimmed down to the hook and fed bite-sized to the listener. “Cements” doesn’t last long but it gets its claws in quick and feeds on a cocktail of nostalgia and a hunger for the hook.

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Kandodo / McBain – Lost Chants / Last Chance

Kandodo, which is comprised of three members of UK psych unit and veritable force of nature The Heads, have teamed up with John McBain from Monster Magnet for a dose of heavy space rock that’s speaking to both parties strengths. First taste “Holy Syke” starts off lost in the ether before building to a monumental wall of heaviness and ground splitting guitar fury. The album was mastered by McBain to play either at 45 or to be slowed down to dirgey goodness at 33. They’ve even doubled up the CD so digital dabblers can have the same fun with speeds. Check out the accompanying video above that matches the song’s psych slide with abstract visuals that rise up like a hot burning sun. The album’s out at the end of the month and highly recommended for fans of either party’s previous bands.

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Savoy Motel – “Sorry People”

Good news for all the moonbabies out there, the psych/soul/glam/funk barrage of Savoy Motel has found a home at What’s Your Rupture?, spinning their once obscure single into an upcoming album’s worth of sparkle sodden mutant handclap boogie that feels lived in and crinkly as a Twinkeyz single run through the woodchipper and neck-stomped by Slade. This new taste of the LP is a heavy hitter that sneers and holds our Angel of No Mercy, Jay Reatard as its inspiration. There’s less melted sun splatter than on that breakout “Hot One” but still plenty to love about the platform heel stomp, disco click ‘n shuffle and paint peeler of a solo that adorn “Sorry People.” Definitely psyched on Jeffery Novak and co. fleshing this project out into a true weirdo run backwards through the television tube memory of our childhoods.

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The Holydrug Couple – “Whatever You Want”

Chilean psych’s premiere dreampop export are back in action, this time creating a very real soundtrack to a very imaginary film. The track “Whatever You Want” finds the band still in the blissful wake of their last album, Moonlust and reaching further for that moment when the sun blinds your eyes and warms the soul. The track is swept along by a pounding beat that’s easily tempered by the dreamy vocal chants and twisted nicely with the addition of some vintage synth stabs. Paired with fellow first taste, the instrumental “Vase of Flowers,” its hard not to feel a debt to Air and in particular the Virgin Suidices Soundtrack. There’s a similar feeling of vintage yet timeless to the track, employing a light touch with a heavy shadow. Can’t wait to hear the whole thing, as I imagine both of these are just puzzle pieces in the world of Soundtrack for Pantanal.



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Bloods – “Bring My Walls Down”

Syndey’s Bloods return for a sophomore album and the first track blows in like a sweet breeze across the ocean. They soften the attack but keep their chewy ’90s center strong, transitioning from garage pop into a gnarled bit of Alt rock that mines The Muffs, Letters To Cleo and Veruca Salt. There’s been a steady turn towards the ’90s in the past couple of years but its always great when bands fight the right touchstones, and this is definitely a welcomed refinement for Bloods. The song finds the band and singer MC ruminating on a crush that lowers all defenses, the kind of overwhelming infatuation that leaves you vulnerable because you can’t help but sputter out the first things that pop into your head. I noticed that the band had DJ’d a night of teen movie soundtrack classics last year, and that alone makes perfect sense, since “Bring My Walls Down” feels like it might find itself right at home sandwiched between cuts on the Clueless Soundtrack or fueling 10 Things I Hate About You‘s femme pop heavy sound. If they were still making the kind of teen comedies that leaned heavily on turning Shakespeare and Jane Austen into parables for the mall set, some music supervisor would be losing their shit over this one.




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Ausmuteants – “Music Writers”

Ausmuteants know how to cut to the damn core. Not only do they insist on reminding us why Devo will always be the most badass assassins of the new wave revolution, but they do it while insulting the very cycle of press and regurgitation that prevails in this age of music journalism. Hell, I sympathize completely. Commentary and criticism have gone by the wayside in favor of quick wrist content and onesheet pilfering to ease the speed. You’re getting hard pressed to find an opinion on why songs are good, just a link and a puff of smoke from the label’s copy. But aside from the biting lyricism, “Music Writers” is stacked full of the sci-fi twinge of synth and caffeinated guitars that Ausmuteants have made their own over the last couple of years, and to be truthful, they’ve rarely done it as well as they have here. Its them at their most acerbic and their catchiest. Its the full package. So lap it up.




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Radar Eyes – “Community”

I’m almost a little wary to believe this is the same Radar Eyes that surfaced in 2012 on their eponymous LP. Where once there was a murky garage chug, now the band have blown full on into a jangled ’80s headspace that’s cribbing hard from their Echo and the Bunnymen and Cure collections; none maybe more so than “Community” which seems like it could easily pass for an Echo b-side lost to the winds. The band is nailing the theatrical sweep, the dark crashes of synth and guitar and Anthony Cozzi’s booming vocals find themselves stretching over the top in every sense of the phrase. There’s a strain of XTC winding its way through there as well and, while all these influences don’t necessarily speak to creating an original footprint with their new direction, they’re paying their 80’s homage right. “Community” is a nice bit of jangle n’ jolt that finds itself stuck your head every time.

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Cory Hanson – “Ordinary People”

Wand is pretty damn prolific as it is, so the news that the band’s Cory Hanson is embarking on a solo record seems like he’s pushing his limits. Though the sound of “Ordinary People” is worlds away from Wand’s powder keg of psych stomp and garage explosion so maybe this Hanson letting his guard down and searching the other side of the coin. Starting with a swell of strings and building to a gorgeous bit of chamber folk that comes on with fragile, yet orchestrated appeal of 60’s nuggets like Gandalf (there’s a bit of a “Hang On To A Dream” quality), bits of The Zombies or even Susan Christie; “Ordinary People” is a psych-folk gem that’s light on the psych but heavy on the emotional impact. Its a new take on Hanson’s songwriting and to tell the truth, the lighter side looks good on him. Not that I’m going to shrug at any fire and flash from the Wand camp, but this kind of lush folk is always a welcome ticket around here. Can’t wait to see how this song stacks up with the whole album. The world needs more weird folk nuggets out there.

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Jacuzzi Boys – “Boys Like Blood”

Just can’t help myself, whenever there’s a new Jacuzzi Boys on the horizon, the excitement gets a bit palpable. After a solid self-released EP, the band returns with a proper full length for their own Mag Mag imprint and its shifting them away from the garage grit of their past, through the power-pop neon of Happy Damage and into a nineties inflected grunge pop that’s roping in a “Cannonball” groove and Matthew Sweet towers of guitar. They’ve always had those more polished instincts roiling under their past releases but it seems with this one they’re fully going for it. Its often a mixed blessing when bands go in for the pop sheen. It can go too far and feel like a plastic version of what you always loved about them, but that doesn’t seem to be the case here at all. Its big and bright and bold, but with a fuzzed out love of ’90s thickness and a chorus that sticks it all the right brain crags. Can’t wait for more of this one in October.

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