Browsing Category Singles (7″, 10″, 12″)

Ty Segall & Cory Hanson – “She’s A Beam b/w Milk Bird Flyer”

An excellent collab up this week from Ty Segall and Wand’s Cory Hanson. The pair have had intertwined paths in the past with Segall releasing Wand’s first LP on his own God? Imprint and the pair kicking around the same L.A. psychedelic headspace. The songs were recorded five years back but they’ve held them close to the vest for some time. This week all sales of the single go to the L.A. Black Lives Matter efforts, so pick it up asap for maximum impact. The songs tackle the turbulent and soft-psych sides of the both artists’ endeavors. “She’s a Beam” has a sloow build before exploding into psychedelic sci-fi light. I’m partial to the flip, myself though. While the a-side is full of blinding flash, “Milk Bird Flyer” has a verdant, psych-folk feel to it, with Segall’s rather documented love of T. Rex coming through nicely. Soft guitar rambles are accented with refracted beams of guitar glitter that feels familiar, yet still thrilling each time they sprint into that sunburst sound. Fans of either artist will find plenty to love here.



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The Reds, Pinks and Purples – “I Should Have Helped You”

Some subtle news slips out over the long weekend that there’s a new 7” from The Reds, Pinks and Purples coming on EU label Discreet Music. The official follow-up to the band’s last LP, Anxiety Art culls four tracks from Glenn and co.’s prolific Bandcamp run over the last few months. In addition to the title track, “I Should Have Helped You,” the record picks up official version of “Unrequited,” “Keep Your Secrets Close,” and “They Only Wanted Your Soul.” As with the last album the band excels at mining the Sarah Records heyday with songs that tip both jangled and jilted – catchy but with a true melancholy heat. There’s not a cut on here worth missing but check out the autumn sighs that abound on the EP closer below. The song’s got Glenn’s earnest delivery humming and close enough to feel breath in the speakers, but its heard to push down the lump in the throat that forms over these two and a half minutes. Seems there should be some copies stateside soon, but there’s a link below for the import as well. Along with his Telephone Numbers output, these are some of Donaldson’s most intimate, but aching songs and its worth keeping an ear on them to see what’s popping up next.




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Powerplant – “A Spine / Evidence”

London label Static Shock has been a solid bet over the past few years, culling in some of the best punk and post-punk from fields afar and corralling them all under the SS umbrella. They nab London via Ukraine new wave miscreants Powerplant for a new EP that finds the band both tucking into their Screamers / Devo / Units foxhole and grasping outside of it. They employ tweaked, frantic synth/guitar grappling that begs to be bagged in plastic and freeze-dried to a flaky crisp. Yet on the opener there’s a loose and limber bout of post-punk at play. The bass line lassos and grabs, with expectations high for a nasal wormhole of wobble on the vocals, but instead the band swerves to an almost cartoonish croon. It almost sounds like the band is playing at one speed and the vox at another, but somehow it works. As they careen into the rest of the EP the pace picks up and the rubber grooves get traded for some frantic scratch, passing their new wave wavelength through an MX-80 torque and letting it sizzle and smoke. Most of the songs here barely let the band take a breath, but the invigoration feels vital and vibrant. Recommend throwing this on the table and turning the volume ’til it snaps.




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Julian Never – “Silver One”

Been a while since I’ve heard rumblings from Mayyors’ camp, but this new project from the band’s Julian Elorduy and Mark Kaiser embraces a less gritty vision of pop, setting their sights on the sun-warped jangle of ‘80s Flying Nun this time around. Backed by ethereal synths and beset with jangles, the title track to this single is a bittersweet gem that would fit in well with the acolytes of the Nun that have currently cropped up all over Australia in the last few years. Elorduy and Kaiser have worked out a pretty solid handle on pop here, shedding some of their raucous punk past (Kaiser was also in Male Gaze), and it all comes crashing to a head on “Silver One.” On the flip, the band postures in am more tender vein, opening with the somber strains of piano, given a slight nod to their more lo-fi past before swapping the keys for strums that, like new works from The Tubs, rope in some of the more tender side of the Creation catalog to the mix with touches of Felt and The Sneetches sneaking in. A solid single from the new band and one that gives cause to keep an eye on them. Hoping that this works itself out into something longterm.



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The Telephone Numbers – “Pictures of Lee”

As I mentioned Friday was a hectic day with the feeds flying fast, but if you were looking in the right places there were plenty of gems to be had. This new single/digital EP from The Telephone Numbers is just such a gem, so let’s rewind and take a listen. The band’s popped up here before and its a new one from Glenn Donaldson (The Skygreen Leopards, The Reds Pinks and Purples) who’s hooked up with a few more SF janglers to create some pristine and perfect pop in this absolute shit year. Sometimes all you need is a crisp jangle, earnest harmonies, and a good dose of swoon and everything just melts away for 3 minutes or so. The title track off of the single garners this kind of appeal. Its a such a crystal clear moment in sound that everything relaxes for a moment and just soaks in the West Coast sun for a few suspended minutes. The rest of the tracks spar between the melancholy shuffle of “Curtains Close,” the late-afternoon sidle of “It’s Not All About Your Life,” and a cracking cover of Alec Bathgate’s “Run.” Just like their last single, there’s a lot to love here and the band’s poised to be one’s to keep tabs on as these singles sneak out.



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Psychic Ills – “Never Learn Not To Love”

Over the tenure of this blog Psychic Ills seem like such a load-bearing staple that its hard to believe that songwriter Tres Warren has passed. The band evolved through myriad incarnations — mutating lineups and sounds through the psychedelic swamp. Their early record were nerve-bitten and bracing when others were looking to hang onto more of a pop life raft. Then Warren and his compatriots worked their way to a sort of psychedelic ebullience on their final album, Inner Journey Out, a poison-tipped country-psych ramble that stood as one of their best. While its bittersweet to know that there was yet another album in the making that may never reach our ears, this double sided ode to the relationship between Dennis Wilson and Charles Manson is a lovely curio of remembrance. The band tackles both The Beach Boys’ “Never Learn Not To Love,” the song that was based on Manson’s “Cease To Exist” and part of his rift with Wilson over changes made to the final version. The version here is lush and hazy, wrapped in the same sort of beautiful grace that marked their last album.

On the flip they tackle Manson’s original and give it a much starker treatment, letting the two versions stand in contrast to one another — the former a comforting shoulder and the other a cold rebuke. Both versions are quite worth your time, and wind up an essential pickup for any longtime fans of the band’s catalog. Warren will certainly be missed and reworks like this only prove why that’s true.




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The Tubs – “I Don’t Know How It Works”

The first couple of offerings from Perfect Records, the collaboration between Joanna Gruesome members and Mark Dobson from The Field Mice, have highlighted members of the band post-dissolution. Where Ex-Vöid blend JG’s knack for melody with some spark-changed guitars, The Tubs invests in Sarah Records-styled jangle that feels as timeless as ever. “I Don’t Know How It Works” is a bittersweet tumble down the tubes with organ swells and aquamarine-hued harmonies that can’t help but hurt as much as they heal. The song picks at jangle with a ruffled charm, feeling at once like the most put together track from members of the Gruesome family, yet still one that doesn’t subscribe to the notion of perfection.

The flip is a slightly more driven pop nugget that’s got strains of The Chills and The Bats in its DNA, and could easily crop up on latter-day offerings from either. Both sides are absolutely stunners and here’s hoping that as this label progresses they continue to highlight the crossover chemistry of members from the ranks of Joanna Gruesome while also roping in some likeminded folks along the way.



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The Holydrug Couple – “Vértigo/Valle de los Espejos”

Sneaking out on their Bandcamp this week, RSTB fave The Holydrug Couple have a charity EP set to benefit those wounds and affected by recent Chilean protests. Both sides of the 7” are covers from Chilean ‘60s band The Blops, who brought American and British rock n’ roll into the country — emulating The Beatles, The Doors, and other exports of the era, but interpolating their own native perspectives as well. Holydrug picks out two early cuts from the band focusing on a deep cut from The Blops’ debut album alongside a b-side from the ’71 single “Machulenco.” While both deviate from The Holydrug Couple’s usual deep valley euphoria, they present a nice take on the songs while drawing a line to some of their own influences. The single is being offered in a scant physical run of, or you can pick it up digitally on the band’s Bandcamp. Worthwhile to nab this one and spread some relief.


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Huevos II – III EP

I mentioned the relatively low-profile pop of Huevos II a little while back, but a deeper look into their inviting EP for Sophomore Lounge is worthwhile. The band boasts a solid lineup featuring Michael (Ma) Turner who’s held down time in Warmer Milks, State Champion, Teal Grapefruit and duo’d with Nathan Boweles. Turner hooks up with some fellow Western Mass heads, but eschews the obvious – swerving shy of the noise laden squall and psychedelic folk of his peers to work in a clean combed vision of pop that’s at least paid a day trip to the alters of Kiwi-pop and Fort Apache-bred US indie. They poke the wounds of Eric’s Trip. They lean back into the mellower moments of Hüsker Dü round about the Zen Arcade days. They dig though the remains of Angst and pick out the sprightliest sections for reexamination.

There’s something bygone about the EP, a remnant of the past unperfected. In exploring Hidden Gems on the site, I’m always looking for the connective tissue from scenes that didn’t materialize, but somehow seeped into the unconscious ether and this is a record that feels like the very notion of that. The Paisley Underground harmonies of “Alright” feed on the slightly misaligned angles of Flying Nun jangles in “Sandy Goes.” The slight twang of “Memories” sighs out of the East Coast Boston basements and the record does a good job of making the case that they were all part of one spontaneous continuum. There’s every indication that the bad isn’t doing this for keeps, but after this five-spot start, I definitely want more.




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Oog Bogo – Oog Bogo 12″

Melting like action figures in the microwave, the songs that make up the first solo EP from The Meatbodies’ Kevin Boog are garage nuggets that have skunked and soured. Atop a stutter of drum machine Boog works his way through the cellophane muck of sticky synths and fried nerve-ending guitars that sound like he’s been spending a lot of time with the early end of the last decade. Bringing to mind scum sifters like Nice Face, Gary War, and Flight, the EP is mostly working its way through the primordial ooze, though he hits pretty hard on “Tower’s Ladder,” which might slot in the paint-fumes fun times of your rotation alongside a Damaged Bug tune or two. Similarly the b-side swinger “Coyote Loves the City at Night” drops the fog-machine haze for just a bit to tip-toe into psych-folk’s ripple. This one lands via friend and fellow tone-skimmer Ty Segall’s Drag City imprint God?



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