Thursday, February 28, 2019

Nothing cover Grouper

Aside from playing a few shows in Austin next month at SXSW, Philly shoegaze band Nothing also have a record of B-sides and rarities headed our way called "Spirit of the Stairs."  The record includes some demos, live takes, and a few covers.  One of those covers is of Grouper's beautiful 2008 track "Heavy Water/I'd Rather Be Sleeping."  Check it out below get the record from Relapse.


Australian dreampop (emphasis on the pop) artist Hatchie has a new album heading our way this summer full of dancey, synthy, dreamy goodness.  Listen to the sugar coated "Without a Blush" below and pre-order the upcoming "Keepsake" LP here from Double Double Whammy.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Deafheaven - Black Brick

Deafheaven released a new track today, "Black Brick," a B-side from last year's excellent album "Ordinary Corrupt Human Love."  It's a blistering, pummeling tune, and worthy of your ears today.  Listen below and get it here via Anti.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

RIP Mark Hollis

In my ill state yesterday, i missed that Mark Hollis passed away.  The former Talk Talk front man is probably best known for his early '80s synth pop work, though the evolution of that band is something to behold, going from dancey synth pop to sprawling, experimental post rock in a span of 10 years.  So, RIP Mark Hollis.  I'm going to spend a little time with your discography.  In the meantime, let's listen to "I Believe in You" from 1988's "Spirit of Eden."

Alice Phoebe Lou

Here's some lovely new pop music from singer/songwriter Alice Phoebe Lou that meshes elements of soul, psych pop, and more into a beautiful little nugget of sound.  Watch the video for "Something Holy" below, look for her upcoming album "Paper Castles" in March, and catch her at SXSW.

Blood Cultures - Dunk on Me

So, sitting here trying to shake off the last parts of illness, playing dinosaurs with the 3-year old, and listening to odds and ends from a dozen bands who will be at this year's SXSW, and i come across New Jersey synth pop band Blood Cultures.  The band is one of those shrouded in mystery kind of groups, donning ski masks when they perform and remaining as aloof as possible, but they're quite good.  And i'm hearing all kinds of influence on them, from The Knife to Health to Grimes.  Watch the horror movie video for their latest single "Dunk on Me" below and download it here from the band.

Esther Rose

I am by no means an expert when it comes to country music, but what i do know is that the old dusty, melancholy sound is much more preferable to me than a lot of what passes for the genre these days.  New Orleans artist Esther Rose makes that old kind of sound, a mix of country western, folk, and good old Americana.  Listen to her latest single, "Don't Blame it on the Moon," below, grab it here from Father/Daughter Records, and look for at SXSW.

Forever Pavot remixed by Principles of Geometry

Forever Pavot is a French artist who dabbles in psychedelic pop, jazz, and library sounds.  Principles of Geometry is a French electronic act who were responsible for what was probably my favorite album of 2008, their sophomore album "Lazare."  Anyway, some songs from Forever Pavot's 2017 album "La Pantoufle" get the remix/rework treatment from Principles of Geometry, and the result is something i want to hear played in a European horror film.  Listen to "La secte de Surgere" below and get the "La Pantoufle est dan le Puits" EP here from Born Bad Records.

Death and Vanilla

Sweden's Death and Vanilla have a new album of lush and gorgeous psych pop headed our way in May.  Pre-order the upcoming "Are You a Dreamer?" LP here from Fire Records, and listen to the album opening "A Flaw in the Iris" below.


UK shoegaze/post rock act Blanket released their "How to Let Go" LP last year, but have now put out a new version of their song "Beacons," featuring Belgian shoegaze band Slow Crush.  Melancholy abounds.  Listen to it below.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Alexia Avina

Montreal artist Alexia Avina has a new album of dreamy, haunting folk heading our way in March, and "Attitude," our fist taste of the record, is a gorgeous and wistful track, soothing ear balm for this chaotic world.  Listen below and get the upcoming "All That I Can't See" cassette here from Never Content.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Be Forest

I just cannot help myself around these old shoegaze vibes, and Italy's Be Forest have got some darkened Lush vibes for days.  That's a good thing.  More bands should trade in darkened Lush vibes.  Anyway, the band will be in Austin in March for SXSW.  Listen to "Bengala" below and get the "Knocturne" LP here via We Were Never Being Boring Collective.

Parrot Dream

Here's some wistful, dreamy shoegaze pop from Brooklyn's Parrot Dream to soothe our minds and souls on this Sunday...especially me since i'm about to have to take apart a crib and put together a "big boy" bed for the toddler.  Anyway, watch the video for "Light Goes (In Mines)" below and get last year's "Light Goes" LP here from Good Eye Records.  And, as is my thing lately, look for them at SXSW.

Mike Krol

Listening to Mike Krol's music makes me think of writing lyrics in my bedroom in 10th grade, or driving around Midland, Texas in my mom's car with a fellow group of like minded dummies looking for something to kill the time and boredom.  That '90s alt-rock influence is heavy here, but i'm digging on every second of it.  Listen to "What's the Rhythm" below and get the perfectly titled "Power Chords" LP here via Merge.  Also be sure to look for the man during SXSW if you are so inclined.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Ancestral Voices

Let's face it guys.  You're all exhausted.  I know, because i'm exhausted too.  And not just with the normal life stuff like work or kids or bills or deadlines or politics or whatever.  I mean something far more existential than that.  The universe is tiring.  And so we occasionally need to take a hour...a day for ourselves, and we've got to rest, to recharge, to heal.  Like most things with me, that means music.  Manchester artist Ancestral Voices is releasing a new album next week, the immense "Navagraha," a sprawling mix of drone, ambient, and new age sound.  Get it here from Horo next week, clear your mind, and stream the whole thing below.  Let's meditate.

Russian Baths

There are a few names i keep coming across over and over again while looking over these SXSW parties and showcases, and one of those is Brooklyn band Russian Baths.  They are everywhere.  And that's great since it ups the chances i'll be able to see them.  The duo make gothic and angular noise rock, aggressive and heavy post punk to wear black to.  Watch the band's video for "Slenderman" below and get their "Penance" EP here from Good Eye Records.

Death Hags

You call yourself Death Hags, and i'm probably going to check you out.  You make dark and moody synth pop whilst also calling yourself Death Hags, and i'm certainly going to listen.  Check out "Electrochemical Communication" from the LA artist below, get it here, and look for them (her?) at SXSW.


I really like the name Squid for a band, so, i guess congratulations to Brighton/London band Squid for picking that name.  The band will be bringing their particular brand of psych pop to Texas in a couple of weeks, and here's hoping i catch them.  Listen to "Terrestrial Changeover Blues (2007-2012)" below and get it here from the band.

David Boring

One of the "new to me" artists i'm very much looking forward to seeing this year at SXSW is Hong Kong's David Boring.  The artist makes a messy, noisy hybrid blast of noise rock, math rock, post punk, and hardcore.  It can be ear shredding, but also quite lovely.  Listen to "Victims" below and get it here from the artist via Sweaty and Cramped.


I remember coming across the name Reptaliens a while back, making a note to myself to check them out based on name alone, and then apparently forgetting to ever do that until now.  The Portland duo make quirky, lo-fi bedroom pop, which honestly is just perfect festival music.  Listen the band's latest, "Echo Park," below, get the 7" here from Captured Tracks, and catch them live in March as SXSW.

Spooky Mansion

I don't really know quite how to describe the music of San Francisco band Spooky Mansion.  It's kind of got a surf vibe, but also some definite avant garde art rock elements as well, with some added psych rock and alt-rock in the mix too.  Check out "I Just Rage" below, grab the band's "Cambodian B-Sides" EP here, and look for them in Austin at SXSW.

Shy Boys

Here's some summery, jangly pop from Kansas City band Shy Boys with a kind of lo-fi '80s vibe.  Listen to "Dim the Light" below, get it here from Polyvinyl, and as i'm listening to SXSW bands today, catch them in Austin in a couple weeks.

Sleeping Jesus

As i continue to scour through the scores of bands and artists i've never heard before who will be descending on my city in a couple of weeks, i'm finding some stuff i'm excited to check out.  Minnesota band Sleeping Jesus make hazy, floaty dreampop, the kind to close your eyes and let the sun warm your face to.  Check out "Alley Dream" below, get it here from the band, and look for them at SXSW.

Big Bliss

Doing a kind of early '00s post punk thing, Brooklyn band Big Bliss make a propulsive and dour kind of pop music.  Check out their latest, "Surface (Veda Rays Unknown Pleasure Centers Remix)," get it here from Exit Stencil Recordings, and look for them at SXSW.

Friday, February 22, 2019


Continuing my sampling of listed artists for next month's SXSW, and mentally cataloging whom i'd like to see, Ontario artist Ellis comes into view, her dreamy, shoegazey bedroom pop hitting all the right notes for my heart.  Listen to "Something Blue" below, grab it here via Fat Possum, and catch her in Austin somewhere in the madness in March.

Friday Horror Trailer - Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker

Thursday, February 21, 2019


Twist is the kind of surfy alt-rock project from Laura Hermiston of BB Guns and Brian Borcherdt of Holy Fuck.  Than band's album "Distancing" is out now.  Get it here, listen to "Venus" below and catch them at SXSW in March.

Cindy Cane

SXSW is just around the corner, and some of the day parties and events are beginning to come out, another year of music i plan to wade through.  So far though, i've got to admit that this time around, i recognize fewer and fewer artists.  That's good though.  The whole point of the week is to discover new bands, and so i'm exploring the dozens and dozens and dozens of names i've never heard before and checking them out.  New York artist Cindy Cane does a kind of lo-fi, gothic, synth pop thing.  Listen to "New York Strangers" below and catch them (? him? her?) in Austin next month.


The kitschy, '60s/'70s AM radio throwback Drugdealer have a new record heading our way in April on Mexican Summer.  Watch the video for the smooth and coasting "Fools" below, pre-order the "Raw Honey" LP here, and dig on the United State of America-aping cover art above.

Eerie Wanda

Crafting a kind of isolated psychedelic pop folk sound, Holland band Eerie Wanda are here for your dreamy Americana demands.  New album "Pet Town" is out now on Joyful Noise.  Order it here and listen to the album opening title track below.

Otoboke Beaver

I very much hope that i get a chance to see Japanese punk band Otoboke Beaver in a few weeks at SXSW.  My body is ready to spasticly lurch and shake.  Listen to the frenetic "Don't Light My Fire" below and pre-order the upcoming "Itekoma Hits" here from Damnably.

Marissa Nadler and John Cale

Gothic folk crooner Marissa Nadler dropped a couple of new tracks this week, one of which, the sorrowful "Poison," featuring the legendary John Cale on vocals.  Listen below and get the "Poison Summer" single here via KRO Records.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Chromatics - Time Rider

Chromatics just announced a North American tour and released a video for new single "Time Rider."  Could "Dear Tommy" finally be on the horizon?  Anyway, watch the video below, download the song here from Italians Do It Better, and try to catch the band in a city near you (fingers crossed i'll be able to attend the Austin show in May).

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The Budos Band

Maybe everything's not completely going to shit, as we've got a new record from The Budos Band coming our way in April.  The New York band's mix of funk, soul, psych, and hard rock is undeniably infectious, the kind of sounds that would accompany the coolest, hippest movie never made.  Pre-order the upcoming "The Budos Band V" here from Daptone, and listen to album opener "Old Engine Oil" below.

Monday, February 18, 2019


Featuring members of Lush, Moose, Modern English, and Elastica, new supergroup Piroshka crafts dreamy, shoegazey pop to warm the eardrums and soothe the soul.  Listen to "Everlastingly Yours" below and get the new "Brickbat" LP from Bella Union.

Perturbator - Excess

Much thanks to Shawn for the heads up that we've got some new music from Perturbator in the pipeline.  The artist has said that he's done with the synth wave genre, and new jam "Excess" seems to go along with that attitude.  The song feels part darkwave pop and part industrial techno.  Check it out below, and be on the lookout for a new album sometime this year on Blood Music.

Cold Cave - Promised Land

The good folks in Cold Cave seem to be content just releasing singles and one-off tracks these days, and honestly that's just fine, as every release is kind of a surprise, and it's always wonderful to get new tunes from the long running synth pop act.  New single "Promised Land" wades in the same icy, gothy darkwave we've grown accustomed to from the band, and as per usual, it's a catchy ear worm.  listen below and get it here via Heartworm Press.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Madlib & Oh No - Big Whips

The upcoming "Gangster Music Vol. 1," a compilation album of different MCs and producers assembled by visual artist Gangster Doodles, feels like a kind of throwback mixtape that Madlib would have put together a decade ago.  Coincidentally enough, the producer appears on the record, with a new track featuring Oh No.  Watch the Pink Panther featuring video fro "Big Whips" below and pre-order the record here from All City.

Saturday, February 16, 2019


Blending elements of prog rock, psychedelia, jazz, krautrock, heavy metal, and more into their swirl and thud of sound, Portland band WEEED, whom i can only assume are straight edge, craft a kind of mind breaking/expanding opus with their latest album "You Are the Sky."  Listen to "Caramelized" below, and pre-order the album here from Halfshell Records, due next month.

Thursday, February 14, 2019


Hey, how did i miss that we have a new album from Ladytron coming out tomorrow?  The Liverpool band, whom i didn't even realize were still together, put out a string of great electro synth pop records 15+ years ago, and maybe they're looking to continue that run.  Check out "The Island" from the self-titled record below, and order it here.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Weyes Blood

Natalie Mering has been recording and performing her particular brand of psychedelic-tinged folk for a long while now with her project Weyes Blood, each release building on what preceded it.  Her latest, "Titanic Rising," drops in April on Sub Pop and finds the artist exploring alternate dimensions through pop.  Listen to the intoxicating "Andromeda" below and pre-order the record here.

H. Grimace

London post punk/alt-rock band H. Grimace have a new 7" out on Living Waters Records, and the A-side, "She's in a State," has melodic Sonic Youth vibes all over it.  It's fantastic.  Listen below and grab the record here.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

The Cowboys

Rock n' Roll is dead.  Or at least that's what they've been telling us for years.  And you know, to a degree, they're right.  If not dead, then on life support, gasping its final breaths, doomed to wander the dollar bin of life until it's resuscitated in niche revival form.  Or maybe that's already happened.  The revival.  The niche market.  The aging music writers clinging to some aping sliver of adolescent rebellion, cigarettes in garages, fake IDs in local dive bars, driving through the countryside with like minded friends and idiots.  It's okay.  I'm there with you too.  And so, apparently, is Indiana band The Cowboys, their 4th LP "The Bottom of a Rotten Flower" grabbing and pulling from 50 years of the genre to craft something timeless.  Check out the piano and sax banger "Now With Feeling" below and order the album here from Feel It Records.  Rock n' Roll is dead.  Long live Rock n' Roll.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Adrianne Lenker

I'm not really a big fan of indie band Big Thief, which is probably why i missed Adrianne Lenker's solo album "abysskiss," that came out last October on Saddle Creek.  But i heard the artist's "symbol" today, and it's a lovely little folk jam, perfect for the overcast skies hanging around Central Texas today.  Listen below and get the record here.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

The Coathangers - F the NRA

I inherited some guns after my dad died.  I've never really been a gun guy, though i did learn how to shoot at a young age, and i've been around them my whole life.  And while they're not really my thing, i can understand why others would be into them.  That being said, the NRA is a garbage organization and should be shredded to pieces.  I believe the latest from The Coathangers nails that point perfectly.  Watch the video for "F the NRA" below and be sure to grab the upcoming "The Devil You Know" LP from Suicide Squeeze next month.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Virgin Pool

Last year when Holodeck Records released a compilation featuring a whole slew of old and new signees to the label, it appeared that their docket would be pretty full for awhile.  And that's certainly been the case.  The latest hits in April from Virgin Pool, an offshoot of the synth pop group Silent Diane.  The upcoming "Endless Evenings" EP finds the artist swimming through hazy, guitar-oriented pop, like something from a dusty dream.  Watch the video for "The Wanderer" below and pre-order the cassette here.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Nivhek (Grouper)

Liz Harris of Grouper fame just surprise released a new double album under the moniker Nivhek.  Upon first listen, "After its own death / Walking in a spiral towards the house" is a droning and haunting piece of sound, like the ambience of time expanding or space collapsing.  Listen to the whole thing below and order it here via Yellow Electric.


Swedish black metal artist Lustre is compiling a bunch of old odds and ends recorded over the years together for the upcoming March releases "Another Time, Another Place (Chapters One and Two)," with maybe more to follow after that.  Dense and atmospheric, the artist crafts a beautiful and heavy kind of sound that sounds like both the darkest and lightest reaches of the universe.  Listen to "The Ardour of Autumn (Part 1)" below and get the albums from the artist here.

Billow Observatory

I had no idea that ambient duo Billow Observatory were still around, but here we are.  New album "III: Chroma/Contour" is out today and is just as soothing and hypnotic as it needs to be.  Listen to "Iris" below and get the record here from Azure Vista.