Sunday, August 19, 2018

"In Your Hands" by There's Talk can fill your heart and break it at the same time
























In Your Hands by There's Talk feels like synth dreams from some later time or space. Sometimes with hazy confections that lie in between shoegaze and dream pop artists get lost in the haze. This is not the case here, the song swells with exquisite emotional highs and lows that has the ability to fill your heart and break it at the same time. There's Talk began as a project by Oakland based multi-instrumentalist Olivia Lee (vox, synths, programming, guitar) in between other collaborations. Into the lush fray came Kellen Balla and Young Lee providing shoegaze guitars and dreamy synths. 

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Robb Donker


Emilee South - surf punk-ish throw back rock n roll of "Heartbreaker"

Emilee South out of Melbourne, Australia churns out earnest throwback rock n roll drenched in surfy guitars and pushed through psychedelic rock filters. Check out the 50's dance party sound of Heartbreaker. 

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Robb Donker





New York's Wet Leather and the audaciously cagey "Party"

Wet Leather out of New York call their brand of sounds "anxiety pop" which is perfectly fine. I don't care what anyone calls it but if the track Party is any indication at all of their overall sound I must say it is just wildly audaciously "good" in so many, man ways. This is a band that I will check out more and a band who I would love to talk to about influences because Party has such a rich multi era sound.

From the onset it feels extremely self aware and cagey in an art rock kind of way. The open spaces in the verses are golden and then when the big chorus comes in... HOLY fuck- the aesthetic feels like late 80's new wave meets dance pop meets Britpop. To top it off the bridge dives headfirst into this art rock / punk thing and the lead is superchunky fucking good. I love this blendo aesthetic and the wild abandon aesthetic taken here. Great vox. Holy fuck indeed.

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Robb


Devin Santi - indie pop soul searching on "I Hope So"























Ok, this is time to be utterly honest. I approved this track by You Tuber Devin Santi called I hope So. I know I did this because it is in my approved box and listening now I have to admit I am a bit surprised. Maybe at the time that I approved I Hope So there existed in my old flesh and bones a tiny iota of youthful wide eyed innocence and feeling of trying to find oneself (albeit in the form of bubble gum pop) and I can live with this even though since that moment of "youthful clarity" my cynicism has crept firmly back in my heart. I guess what I am saying is that it is a pretty cool pop track.

Check out Devin Santi's track I hope So- accompanying video below too.

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Robb Donker

"FOA" by Wwoman (a project of Pittsburgh artist Gi Smee) is indie pop perfect.

























FOA by Wwoman (a project of Pittsburgh artist Gi Smee) is indie pop perfect. Riding on a cool beat and a kind of whimsical dreamy vocal sound it floats along erupting in blasts of rockiness from time to time. Press Notes indicate that Gi Smee is currently being held in a rehabilitation center and while this maybe true or not I hope wherever he is he is allowed to tinker.

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Robb Donker



"Pink Thoughts" by the Bay Area's Topographies is so many things.
























Pink Thoughts by the Bay Area's Topographies is so many things. The foggy haze of shoegazey sounds propelled by the stoic beat and tight lipped guitar licks give the feeling of intimacy yet being emotionally distant. Brooding comes to mind a kind of hall mark of 90's post rock shoegaze and when the song explodes in walls of sound it is heavenly. The official video cast in shades of gray match the song and as directed by Julian Gabriel Bendana it is a trippy affair as a blend of overlaying images that at times feels like ghosts floating in spaces which press notes suggest maybe a nod to "Pink Thoughts" oblique lyrics about death and communicating with loved ones in dreams. 

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Robb Donker

PRESS NOTES:


Topographies formed by Gray Tolhurst (Gray Tolhurst), Jeremie Ruest (Cerf Volant, Your Friend, Lavender Blush), Justin Oronos (Solip), and Lauren Grubb (Minipop, To The Wedding) in 2017, the band meshes the crushingly loud guitars and hushed vocals of 90’s shoegaze with the urgency and mechanical rhythms of post-punk. Their debut EP was recorded and produced at New, Improved Recording in Oakland, California by Alexis Berthelot (Gojira, Wolfgang Tillmans, Enablers) in late 2017.



Saturday, August 18, 2018

"Rock The Deer" by Lulu Lewis steam rolls over you with a kind of kitsch horror movie intensity

The track Rock The Deer by Harlem, New York's Lulu Lewis steam rolls over you with a kind of kitsch horror movie intensity (think of the manic sensibility of the Evil Dead) filtered through proto punk tropes. Dylan Hundley's possessed vocal performance grabs you by the throat and the punk bravado of that Farfisa-esque organ / guitar sound musical break is mind blowingly fun. The punk brevity is a damn shame but then keeping it short will surely lessen the chance of a bruised cheek or poke in the eye during the mosh pit that surely must break out during live performances. 

Lulu Lewis are (at their core) Dylan Hundley (vox, songwriter) and Pablo Martin (multi-instrumentalist, songwriter) and with too many accomplishments to mention (Tom Tom Club- are you fucking kidding me??) they bring a myriad of artistic influences to their table which most likely is slightly tilted. Listening to them made me think of Devo and Butthole Surfers and like those bands between the experimental art punk happening there are diatribes, social and political commentary happening too.  Press notes below is a must read on this one. I am off to find more of their music. 

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Robb Donker

PRESS NOTES:


The creators of Lulu Lewis are Dylan Hundley and Pablo Martin. They bring forth a multilayered approach to their music and visual art. Post punk, soul, psychedelia, garage and experimental film are the most easily identifiable markers as to their overall style.
Pablo Martin, from Buenos Aires, Argentina (multi instrumentalist, songwriting) is the producer of the music as well and plays guitar live. His numerous credits include lead guitar of the Tom Tom Club and the recently critically acclaimed funk outfit The Du-Rites. Dylan Hundley is from New York (lead vocals, songwriting), is the producer / director of the visuals and has an extensive background in film and production as an actress and producer. They are backed live by William Harvey on bass (Urban Verbs, Danger Painters) and Jay Mumford on drums (J-Zone, The Du-Rites). 
In the past 6 months they have been featured in numerous zines, blogs, podcasts and radio including Please Kill Me, Spill, Impose, The Devil has the Best Tuna, YabYum, Atwood Magazine, The Deli,Vanishing Ink, Vinyl Distict, WPKN with Chris Frantz, Bushwick Garage and Radio Free Brooklyn. The will be opening for Richard Lloyd of Television in April in NYC.
Music, Videos, Bios, Press Links can be found at - www.lululewismusic.com



Jailbox's track "Bird Rib" is a beautiful jigsaw puzzle

























Jailbox's new track Bird Rib feels deceptively simple and comfortable but is full of jigsaw puzzle pieces of sound that fit together making a picture that is fully clear from a distance. I love how certain notes are repeated as glue to hold this evocative piece of music together and the selection of whether those notes are on guitar or piano or something else feels more random and organic than planned. Beautifully dynamic production around a somber story drenched in longing inside the very sweet vocal performance.

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Robb


"Caveman" by Dean & the Dagumn Space Villains is a dreamy exploration

Caveman by Dean & the Dagumn Space Villains is a dreamy piece of music simply wrought but infinitely beautiful like space itself. I love the references to spaceman and caveman in the same passages as we are all on personal explorations after all. Not a lot of information on this artist and the track is very low in volume but definitely worth turning up. 

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Robb Donker


Calan Mai's "XO" is a chill piece of wanderlust with Polaroid experiences

Calan Mai hails from the Gold Coast, a small town in Queensland, Australia and his track XO bristles with movement, of covering terrain and having Polaroid experiences. Love Mai's voice which is just best bud cool and coupled with the addictive cadence and almost tropical chill vibe this song is an instant classic for summer and all year. No wonder that Rolling Stone praised it. 

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Robb Donker