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HoT To RoT – “Kindred”

A couple weeks back Melbourne’s HoT To RoT ripped the lid off their new single “Kindred,” a ferocious bit of agit punk that’s aerated by guitar shrapnel and fueled by the ripped n’ torn vocals of singer Blaise Adamson. The band compliments that already shining single with a dizzying video that only serves to put the track back on repeat around here. The song is off a planned EP for Hysterical Records due out later in the month. If you’re still unfamiliar, use this as a moment to get into the band’s brand of battered and bruised catharsis. Keep your eyes out for that EP, if the rest is half as potent as “Kindred,” we’re all in trouble.



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The Shifters – “Work, Life, Gym, Etc.”

Excellent crossover between my love of Aussie pop and my love of Trouble in Mind today. The label announces the release of the debut from Melbourne’s The Shifters. The LP was recorded by Total Control/Dick Diver/Terry shambolic pop treasure Al Montfort and it bears a bit of resemblance to the shaggy pop of recent work with Terry with spillover appeal for fans of the shaggy shake of The Stroppies or the discomforting burn of Wireheads and Vintage Crop. Definitely in line with the newer school players of South Hemi slacker pop, but the single also boasts a nice fidelity bump from their previous 7″s via Montfort’s production. All in all, bodes well for an album of similarly shaded jangle nuggets when this one lands in September.

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Warm Drag – “Cave Crawl”

Warm Drag’s first single slinks out of the gate, coating everything in its path with an ooze of psychedelic excess and basement lounge sex appeal. The band is comprised of Paul Quattrone, who’s done time in Oh Sees and !!!, and singer Vashti Windish. Blending the aesthetics of his respective resume entries, Quattrone is building guitar psychedelics on samplers, dropping fuzz-choked guitars and synths echoplexed beyond their breaking points on top of pounding beats that have him referencing The Bomb Squad’s production. The whole thing is tied together with a low-slung twang that gives things a touch of Western futurism – soundtracking the watering holes of lone gunmen preening through dystopian housing blocks.

Windish, for her part, bursts onto the track with a confidence and cool that is palpable. She’s wrapped Quattrone’s beats and dusted twang around her arm like a mic cable and her vocals seem to twirl the whole track in a practiced precision that’s almost bored with its own show of skill. How this all fits into their upcoming album for In The Red remains to be seen, but it’s a good first look for sure. Paired with remote control happy barrage of images, the video and track are a damn fine freakout that’s built for clubs that skew less bottle service and bros and more leather and blacklight.



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Doug Tuttle – “Twilight”

Embarking on a new tour, Doug Tuttle lets loose a new single that’s swaddled in autumnal psych pop. The track is brisk, yet humid, letting the curl of breath snake through the song’s bittersweet edge. Tuttle is a master of bumping the border of the kaleidoscope, never spinning the dial fully into ’60s pastiche and overt trippiness. Instead he’s making psych for the microdose set, crisping up the edges just a touch and popping those colors into pleasing focus. He accompanies the track with a simple and searching video that’s hitting the same well of longing that “Twilight” taps into. Its a good reminder to get out their and see him while you can, but even if he’s not within shot of a stage near you, this video is a welcome friend to start off the week.

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Slift – “Fearless Eye”

French psych band Slift split their latest release, La Planète Inexplorée, across five labels (which seems excessive) and they herald its release with an ambitious video that’s pure psychedelic sci-fi. “Fearless Eye” worms through glassy, liquid string plucks before exploding into a fuzz-gut explosion of guitar, spacey flutes and tumbling drums. While their last EP showed promise but got stuck in the wake of Thee Oh Sees, this taste of the upcoming album finds them carving out their own ferocious niche. The song’s got bite and the video brings to life the band’s hallucinogenic album covers by Pierre Ferrero, following the travails of a cosmic knight who travels space and time. Seems like with that many labels on board you ought to be able to snag a copy when the album lands in September.



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The Holydrug Couple – “I’ll Only Say This”

Chilean psych unit The Holydrug Couple have been getting lush for as long as I can remember, but their latest for Sacred Bones doubles down on the sparkling light and hazy wash of aftrnoon sun that dapples their sound. The single is the first off of their upcoming LP Hyper Super Mega. The accompanying clip goes for more for cultural saturation then for visual gauze, flipping through touchstones of music and history until the track crumples in on itself. From the blissed pop on display here its apparent that the band has yet another stunner in store when that album rolls down the pike in September. After a summer swelter like we’ve had on the East Coast these past couple of days, the band’s gooey take on psych is just the thing to embrace the humid vibes coursing through June.

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Shy Boys – “Take The Doggie”

Kansas City’s Shy Boys blend an affinity for bighearted pop of the ’60s variety with the knotted College Rock shot straight out of Athen’s ’88 for an instantly recognizable sound that’s always on the tip of your tongue and lapping at the backwaters of memory. Their short, but sweet, track “Take The Doggie” is a tale of dog-knapping with no ill intent and the video, well pretty much hits things on the nose with some crowd-sourced dog shots. Still, the song’s an earworm that can’t be beat and a standout on their upcoming Polyvinyl debut, Bell House.

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Szun Waves – “Constellation”

Enter an engrossing new video from jazz-psych combo Szun Waves. The trio, consisting of producer Luke Abbot, drummer Laurence Pike (PVT) and composer Jack Wyllie (Portico), unleashes an enveloping track of glistening tones and majestic brass from their upcoming LP on LEAF. The accompanying video, directed by Sam Wiehl, forms a xeroxed wonderland in muted tones and mutable shapes that reads like microscopic images set to work by the Joshua Light Show. The video’s effects were created with 3D models, paints, solvents, and air fresheners but the results are nothing short of otherworldly. If this is just a taste of the album, I definitely want to sink into this wholesale. Keep an eye out for New Hymn To Freedom in August.

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Vinyl Staircase – “Cherry”

Over here in The States, the rolodex of young British bands can sometimes go unchecked – people seem to get stuck in the old “if I can’t see ‘em who gives a crap” mentality. But weaving among the overhyped excess across the pond there are still plenty of young’uns with their hearts and guitars in the right place. Vinyl Staircases’ debut EP culls together four rather infectious tracks, with lead single “Cherry” leading the way. The track is wholeheartedly in the pocket ‘90s holdovers, but mixing their clans in a nice way, reimagining the Blur crowd mixing it up with The Dandy Warhols and BJM for a Britpop that swings a bit more paisley than mod. The track and vid are a whole lot of fun, and along with follow-up single “Dandelion Wine” the EP shows a band that’s got a lot more to give.

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Bodega – “Jack In Titanic”

Brooklyn’s Bodega have captured the spirit of a generation raised on television and then dipped in the deep end of the internet. The band explores themes of stereotypical masculinity learned from hours watching celluloid heroes. Its hard not to sympathize with the notion of mixing memories with plotlines and the remote buttons as babysitter. The band ties the themes up in their typically austere, yet pervasively effective appropriation of art-punk poses. Along with much of the rest of their debut, Endless Scroll, the song puts the hammer to the nail on looking back with rosey rear view. This record gets more endearing with each listen. Catch the clip above.



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