Out of the same fire and brimstone that once gave birth to music’s most spirited performers and composers comes Apogee, a rock album that deserves to be listened to by anyone who considers themselves to be a pop aficionado or just a fan of bold music in general. Vinyl Floor, the band behind Apogee, have been making noise in the European underground for a number of years now, but in the totality of their four album discography nothing has been quite as ambitious as this most recent undertaking, and that’s really saying something considering that their last couple of records have been symphonic in their construction and design. Instead of applying their garage-influenced rock format to a larger set of conceptual framework, Vinyl Floor is flipping the script of the musical direction of the last five years and exploring a more old school sound in the vein of proto punkers like The Stooges and even doom pioneers Pentagram. That said, don’t get the impression that Apogee is a retro exhibition piece in the same style as Wolfmother’s self-titled record; this is an album that is very unique to this period in history. Continue reading “Vinyl Floor release Apogee LP”
I don’t think that culture changes just because of a single artist or any record they might release, but the buzz surrounding the eponymous new album by Leland and the Silver Wells definitely has the potential to move the needle of at least one element of the music world in a direction significantly different than anything we’ve witnessed before. Normally I’m hesitant to get on these kinds of bandwagons, but after listening to the Silver Wells’ latest record, I couldn’t help but get a little eager to see what sort of crater this album is going to make. Leland Ettinger is one of the smartest voices in pop, and this record only further cements her status as an icon of modern indie rock. Continue reading “Leland and the Silver Wells release LP”
SPiN’s “What’s It Gonna Take” is a bouncy, hopeful rock track in the tradition of All-American Rejects or early Maroon 5. A blend of pop, rock, and even a little bit of funk ensures that SPiN’s latest is something that will bury its way deep into the minds of anyone listening in. A robust production makes it easy for the band to make a cogent statement with their latest effort. When the band moves away from the main dynamic to allow for additional interplay among the instruments, one can truly see how talented the individual members of the band is. Continue reading “SPiN “What’s It Gonna Take””
The Silver Snails’s “Dancing With The Stars” is an effort that boldly crafts an entirely new style. There are nods to classic rock, pop, new wave, and indie rock during thie five-plus minute composition, but the children’s chorus and haunting lead vocals allow The Silver Snails to make a track that will stick with listeners long after the release ceases to play. With a distinct visual palette for the single’s video, The Silver Snails ensure that the track has a bit more backstory to it. Dancing With The Stars is one of our favorites this month. Continue reading “The Silver Snails “Dancing With The Stars””
SadGirl’s “Breakfast For 2″ is a dreamy track that draws from early 1960s pop. The whole experience feels drawn from a teen romance movie from the era. Sedate, touching lyrics lay leisurely on classic guitar riffs and on-point percussion. The most delicious part of this track has to be the guitar solo laid down a bit before the two-minute mark. There is a certain fresh sound to Breakfast For 2 that belies its retro track. SadGirl is able to make something special here, accomplishing everything that they need to do before the three minute mark. The video for Breakfast For 2 is below the jump.
The Death Valley Girls have released a new track, “Disaster (Is What We’re After)”. The effort is a stripped-down, dirty sort of rock in the veins of The Runaways or early Ramones. There is a bit of industrial fuzz and ska that is interspersed here to keep things interesting. The completeness of the instrumentation is such that one will need to play Disaster multiple times before hearing each and every inclusion. Chrisma is oozing through the radio with this cut, and we’re excited to hear more from the Death Valley Girls in the months and years to come. Continue reading “Death Valley Girls “Disaster (Is What We’re After)””
Tancred’s “Something Else” ties together the pop-punk of The Donnas with the fuzz and distortion of Hole during their new single, Something Else. The vocals bounce back and forth from being coy and shy and being bold and brash. Rising and falling from prim alt-rock to raw rock, Tancred is able to keep listeners’ feet tapping through every point of their new single. A brief instrumental interlude immediately precedes the final few seconds of the song, giving a momentary respite before the band concludes with a bit of Nirvana-meets-Weezer fuzz. Something Else is three perfect minutes.
NYA’s Southland EP begins with Shallow. The vocal-heavy track calls back to the jazz tradition of the 1920s and 1930s, with a bass and a bit of guitars filling in the gaps for NYA. Hints of Angie Stone and Corinne Bailey Rae can be heard here. Hollywood Hills is an ambient / EDM-tinged track that adds a good amount of distortion to blur the distinction between vocals and instrumentation. The Southland EP concludes with For Your Love, a single that has a bit of a classic R&B / swing sound present. It’s NYA’s strong vocals that allow the EP to conclude in a strong of a way as it began.
Kurt Vile’s “Loading Zone” starts off with a wistful alt-rock sound that allows the guitar, bass, and drums to shine. When Kurt’s vocals begin, listeners will love the slinky, retro/1970s approach that he takes. The clear delivery of vocals ensures that listeners can enjoy the narrative that Kurt intersperses through his latest tracks. All sides are able to shine here, with the vox and instrumentation each getting time during this effort to shine. Loading Zones has tinges of folk rock and psychedelic present here, but the finished effort is all KV’s own. Give it a spin below.
Dulcie Taylor’s “Halfway To Jesus” is touching. The effort looks back to 1990s country artists like Reba McEntire and The Judds. An assertive set of vocals is matched perfectly with strong vocals and punctual drumming. A strong environmental message is weaved throughout Halfway to Jesus. We’re particularly fond of the additional vocals that push Taylor’s voice to a higher plateau. Additional elements – the absolutely amazing scene setting of the guitars – make the single into something truly special. Halfway to Jesus is an effort that listeners can enjoy on its own but contains a considerably deeper set of messages that one can pick up if they focus in just a bit deeper. Continue reading “Dulcie Taylor “Halfway To Jesus””