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Omni – “Skeleton Key”

Haven’t discussed the new OMNI here yet, but its good to see the Atlanta post-punks make good with a jump to Sub Pop for their latest, Networker. “Skeleton Key” is tightly wound, maybe a bit more sanded than the band sounded the last I left ‘em, but they’re still bending the strings through the wringer. They’re as tight as ever, though, stop-starting their way through the song like studio rats with a penchant for pop preening. The Robert Quine shadow looms large here – a foot in crunched punk and a foot in the sweater set. Oh, but don’t let the smooth taste fool ya, OMNI are still from the streets, and sometimes they find themselves waking up there. The video is simple and saturated and fits the band’s minimal design modes fairly well. Check the clip and line on up for the new platter when it lands in November.



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Robert Sotelo – “Mister”

‘Nother good one from Upset the Rhythm runs down the line. Robert Sotelo follows up his 2017 skewed-pop album Cusp with the equally beguiling Infinite Sprawling. The second single from the set, “Mister,” is a fuzz-beset pop-skimmer, slinging twang and jangle in equal helpings. Sotelo plays it straight, but the song’s got a bit of the curdled crowd in its DNA, picking up crumbs from the Deep Freeze Mice and The Soft Boys on the way through the wires. He’s paired the track up with a simple, yet unsettling video that’s cryptic as it is crazy.

Sotelo gives a bit of background behind the meaning of the clip, offering ”The video was made by Iain McCall and translates the lyrics for the song into Bliss Symbols. Iain himself stars in the vid. The song features Joan Sweeney from Current Affairs on vocals also and is about how constant online organisation around your creativity starts to take up more time than the creativity itself (well it kind of is haha)” His sophomore LP is out September 14th, and it’s a jittery shaker well worth your time.



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EXEK – “Unetiquetted”

Aussie noisemakers EXEK are back with a new LP and a move from Superior Viaduct subsidiery W.25th Records to French post-punk outpost SDZ in Europe, Digital Regress in the US and Anti-Fade at home in Australia. The slinking “Unetiquetted” finds the band haunting the halls of a greasier vision of post-punk — dark, damaged, but still riding a groove that’s hard to ignore. The track is shrouded in a detached debauchery, exhaling cold confidence and oozing bile. The accompanying video in turn looks like staging a freaky dance party in the post-credits of ’90 first person players like DOOM. It’s a hypnotic pairing with the band’s strange magic. The new LP lands September 6th.

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Bonnacons of Doom – “Esus”

Liverpool heavies Bonnacons of Doom return to the fold with a new EP that reworks previuos tracks from their debut, with edits by JD Twitch, Liars and, Capac. Also included is a new track, “Esus,” that proves once again why the band is such a stunner in Rocket’s roster. Making good on their name, the track gathers clouds of doom under a megaton blast of guitar and the soaring incantations of Kate Smith. Her vocals push the track towards oblivion as the track growls behind her. The band’s debut was a welcome surprise last year and they’ve apparently been working up some devastating live shows, more of which are on the way. The band embarks on a short UK tour starting on the 30th of August. The EP is out September 13th digital and on limited cassette.



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Guaxe – “Onda”

Got a new video up today from Boogarins offshoot Guaxe, the duo of Dino Almeida (Boogarins) and Pedro Bonifrate (Supercordas). “Onda” is a sparkling psych-pop stunner full of blurred neon synths, fogged vocals and an insistent beat that pushes the song along with a hypnotic shake. The band’s named after the Gauxe bird that lives in the forests of Brazil near where the artist’s recorded, inspired by the bird’s otherworldly synth-like call. Definitely a track that should appeal to those in the mood for some downtempo grooves from Temples or offshoots of Beta Band, Lone Pigeon.

The band’s Pedro Bonifrate gives a bit of insight into the track and its homegrown video. “Onda” is one of the last songs we’ve recorded for the album, and one of the upbeat ones. Roughly it’s got me singing the verses and Dino singing the chorus, so you can hear us both on this one. The video was edited by myself with amateur footage from our gatherings in Paraty through the last 4 years, when the album was recorded. I guess it’s a nice way to show people some effective context about the Guaxe project, which was born from friendship and a true love for music.” The record is out September 6th from OAR.



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Bill MacKay + Katinka Kleijn – “Hermine”

Its been a rather banner year for Bill MacKay. The guitarist’s last album landed in February and its one of his most affecting statements to date, which in a catalog of his caliber isn’t any small feat. Now he’s got another LP on the way, this time with Dutch Cellist Katinka Kleijn. The first taste of their upcoming Drag City album is scarred and scratched. McKay’s guitar work is far more fanged than on Fountain Fire but no less vital. The first cut “Hermine” is feral, burnt, hollowed — it’s a much more ferricious side of MacKay than his simmering folk and Kleijn adds a shading and dimension that brings his playing forward in stark relief. Check the video for the first cut above and look out for this one on October 11th.

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The Babe Rainbow – “Many Moons of Love”

The third album from Aussie surf-folk combo The Babe Rainbow is shaping up to be a sun streaked summer comfort album. The band has a knack for pairing joyful harmonies with just the right pang of bittersweet shade, rolling in touches of jazz and lounge to their folk backbone. They’ve come up downstream in the Flightless crew and have begun taking a larger foothold here in the States over the past couple of albums. “Many Moons of Love” sees the band wistful strummin’ with the best of them atop some home footage that feels like a vacation reel pitch for an endless summer in the hills. Check the video above and look out for the LP in September.



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Allah Las – “Polar Onion”

Allah Las give another peek behind their new LP with a video for “Polar Onion,” a darker, more solemn track than the previously released “In The Air.” Instead of their usual shaggy jangle and touch of surf, “Polar Onion” captures the other edge of jangle-pop, the bittersweet pang of The Go-Betweens, or the quiet anguish of R.E.M. The band’s definitely explored this side before, but never quite as effectively as they do here. The video is animated by longtime Las and Mexican Summer designer Bailey Elder and it works blocks of swirling color into California motifs, balancing the cloudy strum with a palette of hazy colors and hand drawn rough edges. The band’s latest is out October 11th, from Mexican Summer.

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Bill MacKay – “Birds of May”

Bill MacKay has been a singular voice in folk for the better part of two decades and a staple of Chicago’s vibrant traditions, though he’s often sounded like he’s been dropped from the UK fresh off a Bert Jansch session. His latest LP, Fountain Fire is one of his strongest to date, a grey-skied folk journey into the heart of humanity. As he embarks on a run of dates, which include some key Hudson Valley hits for those of you’re in my area (Huichicha, Tubby’s, The Half Moon), he’s released a video for the standout track “Birds of May.” The visuals are understated but that lets the music shine through, humble and stately. If you get a chance hop on over to a show – he’s touring with fellow Drag City stabler Mike Donovan, so there’s just that much more incentive.

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Parsnip – “Rip It Off”

The anticipation on this upcoming debut from Parsnip marches on today with the release of the band’s latest video, an intricate, costume-heavy workup for “Rip It Off.” The Aussie foursome lays down an indie pop vision that skews pastoral – strums and plucks, swoons of organ and a gallop of bass. The video is no less a celebration of things less pedestrian. There’s an opulence to the visuals that stands in stark contrast to the folk sway of the song. The video is striking of its own accord, but paired with the band’s plaintive ode, its something of a wonderful contrast, a surreal dip into confusing dreams that beg meaning.

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