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Archive | January, 2017

White Reaper

January 31, 2017

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First of all, I love that White Reaper’s upcoming album is called The World’s Best American Band (due April 7 via Polyvinyl).  That’s pretty damn clever.  Secondly, the first single off of the LP just might be the best track in the band’s quickly expanding catalog. Good luck getting it out of your head.  Enjoy.

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101X Homegrown Podcast

January 30, 2017

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Hey all!  Here’s the playlist and podcast for my latest 101X Homegrown.  Enjoy.

(NEW) The Octopus Project – Wrong Gong
Night Drive – Rise And Fall
Hollow Coats – Fold
Letting Up Despite Great Faults – Starlet
Moving Panoramas – One
The Eastern Sea – The Entertainer
Tres Qui – Prince Of Pop
Upper Deck Pets – No Replacement
Ty Richards – Spaceman
The Midnight Stroll – Just Hang On
Spoon – Hot Thoughts
Sweet Spirit – Baby When I Close My Eyes
Will Johnson – Every Single Day Of Late
Daniel Johnston – True Love Will Find You In The End


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Jamiroquai

January 30, 2017

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I love Jamiroquai.  I know a lot of people who only know the band for Virtual Insanity (or perhaps Canned Heat because of its use in Napoleon Dynamite), but they have a whole slew of songs that are really damn good.  Maybe I should make a mix?  I should make a mix.

Anyhow, today I have the video for the band’s latest attention-grabber.  It’s the title track off of their upcoming album, Automaton, which is due out March 31.  Expect to want the hat that Jay Kay is wearing.  Enjoy.

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Hip Hop Hooray (Leah)

January 27, 2017

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This past Sunday on my show, inspired by the more than 2.9 million who participated in the Women’s March in Austin and other cites, I played tracks from women in hip-hop. The talented and determined ladies below in some ways represent how all women battle to be heard, both literally and figuratively. While hip hop has come a long way in the last 40 years, it’s still a young genre and it remains steeped in the inherent sexism of our broader culture (haha … “broader culture”) but especially in the machismo and misogyny that’s so prevalent in the sturm and drang of the genre. It’s inching towards becoming the voice of all peoples, and it’s been a great progressive tool in the last several years to assault the forces that keep people down, but the popular side of hop hop – the albums that sell or stream millions – still predominantly portray women as objects.  Well, here are the women in their own voices and words and they are just fucking killing it.

I strongly urge you to listen to – really hear – and patronize these artists and all who are voices that are outside of the mainstream because, hey, the future is female.

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Real Estate

January 26, 2017

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I’m not sure I was aware of how long it’s been since Real Estate have had anything new (it was 2014′s Atlas, if you’re curious).  Either way, it’s nice to have them back.  Today’s track is the first single off of their new album, In Mind, which is due out March 17 via Domino.  It’s an ear-pleaser.  Enjoy.

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Show Of The Week

January 25, 2017

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This Saturday I need everyone to make a stop at Cheer Up Charlie’s, where Austin’s own Pollen Rx will be having a show to celebrate the release of their debut album, Sunbelt Emptiness.  Many years ago they hit me up about debuting a song, and I told them I wouldn’t until they at least created a Facebook page.  That’s how young and silly they were.  Now though they’re all grown up, and it’s time for everyone to really pay attention and provide them approving head nods.  Be there.

The show is free, but I imagine you’ll be able to make a donation at the door (if you want).  Deep Time, Kay Odyssey, The Infinites and Popper Burns are set to open.

BONUS Show Recommendations:

Tonight:
- Dikes of Holland, Flesh Lights, Dumb Vision, Crooked Bangs at Hotel Vegas
- Leopold and His Fiction, Emily Wolfe at Stubb’s

Thursday:
- Growl, Deep State, Shivery Shakes at Hotel Vegas
- Will Johnson, Samantha Crain at the Mohawk
- Charles Bradley Benefit and Hoot Night with Otis the Destroyer, 80H Project, CJ Edwards & the Funk Fellowship, Cilantro Boombox featuring Tameca Jones, Mixer Rogers, Roxy Roca at Antone’s

Friday:
- Tamarron, Party Girl at Hotel Vegas
- Cloud Cult at Antone’s
- Mike Doughty, Wheatus at 3ten ACL Live

Saturday:
- Harvest Thieves at Stubb’s
- Dawes at Stubb’s

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Crystal Fairy

January 24, 2017

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Somewhere along the way I totally missed out on the uniting of Buzz Osborne and Dale Crover (both from the Melvins), Omar Rodríguez-Lopez (from At The Drive-In and The Mars Volta) and Teri Gender Bender (from Le Butcherettes).  They’re calling themselves Crystal Fairy, and they’re wonderfully riffy and loud.  We all may have to snatch up their self titled debut when it gets released on February 10 via Ipecac.  Enjoy.

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101X Homegrown Podcast

January 23, 2017

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Hey hey!  Here’s the playlist and podcast for my most recent 101X Homegrown.  Enjoy.

(NEW) Spoon – Hot Thoughts
(NEW) Letting Up Despite Great Faults – Starlet
Pollen RX – AR AK
Buhu – Coastareka
(NEW) Hollow Coats – Fold
Hours Quiet – Bring You Down
(New) My Education – Open Marriages
(NEW) Eastern Sea – The Entertainer
Black Books – Golden OK
(NEW) Will Johnson – Every Single Day Of Late
Emily Wolfe – Atta Blues
Wiretree – Let Me In
Harvest Thieves – I Killed Laura Palmer


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Quickdraw: Ty Segall, Cloud Nothings, Tim Kasher, Why?, Tennis

January 23, 2017

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Just catching up on some big tracks.  Enjoy.

For a moment there it looked liked Ty Segall’s upcoming self titled album was going to be a quiet one, but here in Break A Guitar he’s wildly throwing punches.  I’m all about it.  His new LP is due out this Friday via Drag City.  Side note about the album, it’s his ninth solo effort since 2008.  Wow.


Cloud Nothings new album, Life Without Sound, will be out this Friday via CarparkEnter Entirely is their latest single.  It’s a fairly straightforward affair, but I sure do love how it feels like it might explode at any moment.


Members of Cursive have launched a label, 15 Passenger, and Tim Kasher’s third solo effort is set to be its first release.  I love the pretty (and slightly whimsical) arrangement here in the first single, An Answer For Everything.  Side note, you’ll be able to catch Tim at Barracuda on May 8.

Proactive Evolution is the second single off of Why?’s upcoming album, Moh Llean (due March 3 via Joyful Noise), and it’s rad.  There’s a good chance I’m going to hum its “I’m on fire” bit for the rest of the year.  Side note, the band will be at the Mohawk on April 5.

Has Tennis been flying under the radar lately, or is that just me?  Anyhow, their new single, In The Morning It’ll Be Better, is a pop gem.  Yours Conditionally is due out March 10 via Mutually Detrimental.

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Raised Eyebrows: 2016 Hangover (Randy)

January 20, 2017

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2016 was a year many of us of would like to have forgotten for a variety of reasons. But as stated before, for better or worse, 2016 was one of the finest years for music this century. I was able to wrangle together mixes featuring 90 different records from 2016 that needed your attention in a few articles for SOTO. You can find Part 1 here and Part 2 here.

Now that the sun has set on 2016 and the shit is prepared to hit the fan in 2017, I’m taking a look at a few records that didn’t get their due and a few rad LP’s about to be released. Peace attack 2017.

Suzanne Kraft – What You Get For Being Young

After obsessing over Kraft’s wonderful 2015 LP Talk From Home, I was stoked to have this meditative effort around to close out the year/be hopeful for the new one.

Wovenhand – Star Treatment

Ex-16 Horsepower leader is now taking his solo acoustic project into foggy, whip chain noir territory.

East of the Valley Blues – EOTVB

A sort of acoustic instrument ambient record. Waging heavy peace.

Pete Astor – Spilt Milk

I was late to the game on this one. A superior pop record and a shooting star in the Astor catalog.

Immersion – Analogue Creatures Living on an Island

Each song a journey with no real destination. Every sound adds to the dream.

Chris Forsyth and The Solar Motel Band – The Rarity of Experience

Late on this one too. This band hits every pleasure point. Best descriptor is PURE HEAT.

Shearwater – Jet Plane and Oxbow

I am a sucker for the motorik groove found on Radio Silence.

Scott Hirsch – Blue Rider Songs

Hiss Golden Messenger engineer gets his Double-J Cale groove on.

The Mood Illusion – Strangers in the Night

Austin’s Bob Hoffnar leads you and his band through a non-ordinary trip through the places behind the places that you thought you were headed to.

Rob Noyes – The Feudal Spirit

Guerilla guitar soli.

Noveller – A Pink Sunset For No One

Drowning in sound, lost in dream, followed by land. Truly original scapes from Sarah Lipstate.

Brokeback – Illinois River Valley Blues

I love this band. Interplay for days from these Chicago heavies.

Michael Chapman – 50

Living legend Michael Chapman celebrates 50 years in the tunnel with an album made with friends and admirers.

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Conor Oberst

January 19, 2017

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I’ve long been a big fan of Conor Oberst.  Bright Eyes!  So good.  Desparecidos!  So good.  Monsters of Folk!  Pretty good.  Conor’s work under his actual name!  Eh.  That’s actually where I sort of draw the line with him.  For whatever reason I just have never been totally into his “solo” releases, and I can’t say I cheered when I received an email about his upcoming LP, Salutations (due March 17 via Nonesuch).  However, the first single, A Little Uncanny, is good.  Really good, actually.  He cut it with The Felice Brothers and drummer Jim Keltner (Neil Young, Jackson Browne, George Harrison, Bob Dylan, John Lennon, and more) as his backing band, and I love it.  Enjoy.

PS – Conor will be playing ACL Live on May 19.

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Movie Breakdown: XXX: Return Of Xander Cage

January 19, 2017

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Pre-Screening Stance:

I like 2002′s XXX.  I like Vin Diesel.  So, naturally, I like that Vin is back as the titular character.  Here’s hoping his second go-round as the extreme sports-loving secret agent doesn’t suck.

Post-Screening Ramble:

The original XXX works because the people who made it truly believed that everything in their world was cool.  The nu-metal soundtrack with Rammstein, Drowning Pool, etc.  They thought it was cool.  The extreme sports in it – base jumping, snowboarding, etc.  They thought it was cool.  The anti-establishment hero with the smart mouth.  They thought he was cool.  Sure, maybe in hindsight it was all more cheesy than cool, but that’s not what really matters.  The point is just that it was made by people who dug what they were doing, and that enthusiasm is a big reason why it’s a fun flick (and why it holds up).

As for XXX: Return of Xander Cage, it was clearly crafted by a mishmash of people with no passion for anything who simply just wanted to cash a nice sequel check, and because of that it’s a lazy, cringe-inducing, awful movie that isn’t even the slightest bit fun.  Vin Diesel is woefully flat in it, mostly because his dialogue consists of nothing but shitty dad jokes and recycled lines from the first XXX.  There’s a team building aspect that makes no sense and feels really forced.  The plot itself is a cheap, super dumb rip off of Furious 7′s (shame on you, Vin).  The CG is somehow worse than the film that was released 15 years before it.  Donnie Yen and Tony Jaa are wasted.  Toni Collette is terribly miscast.  And on and on and on.  I figured the film would at least be tolerable, but it’s thoroughly terrible.  What a disaster.

Trust me when I say that you should never ever bother with XXX: Return of Xander Cage.

One Last Thought:

There’s a part in Return Of Xander Cage where XXX recruits a guy called The Hood for his “save the world” team.  Want to know what his special ability is?  He’s a DJ.  A GODDAMN DJ.  That’s it.  The dude doesn’t do anything else.  At all!  He might be the dumbest and most useless character in the history of film.

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Movie Breakdown: 20th Century Women

January 19, 2017

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Pre-Screening Stance:

Mike Mills’ Beginners is a great film, and judging by its trailer, 20th Century Women is going to be a more than worthy follow-up.  Still, it’s hard to keep my expectations in check because I legit really love Beginners.  It’s so damn touching!

Post-Screening Ramble:

I went into 20th Century Women expecting a lot, and yet it still managed to knock me over.  Its story centers around a single mother, Dorothea (a very good Annette Bening), and her mission to figure out how to help usher her teen son, Jamie (a very good Lucas Jade Zumann), into manhood.  To do this she enlists a whole cast of characters.  There’s Abbie (a very good Greta Gerwig), who is a punk-loving but sensitive photographer, William (a very good Billy Crudup), who is a hippie-like handyman, and Julie (a very good Elle Fanning), who is a rebellious young lady that Jamie has long been in love with.  Together, but also separately because they’re each so wildly different, they go about assisting Dorothea with helping Jamie grow up.  To be honest, I kind of hate tagging 20th Century Women as a coming of age film, as I think it’s something more than that, but I guess that is the best way to cram director Mike Mills’ latest gem into a nutshell.  Here’s the deal though, Mills allows the story and narration to float around in such a clever, engaging way that you don’t just watch Jamie grow up, you get to actually see into each supporting character and learn why they are the way are and more.  This makes for a warm, nostalgic, intimate and charming film that does well to remind you that everyone grows up differently, and no one ever stops learning and evolving.

Please see this one as soon as you can.

One Last Thought:

Lucas Jade Zumann is like Asa Butterfield if Asa Butterfield wasn’t super weird and could actually act.  So, how do we go about CG’ing Lucas into every film that Asa has ever done?  It’ll be good for the world.  Promise.

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Show Of The Week

January 18, 2017

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I was going to lay low all weekend, but I’m thinking I should rally up and go see the Seratones on the inside stage at Stubb’s this Saturday.  I was introduced to them about eight or nine months ago when they opened for Thao And The Get Down Stay Down at the Mohawk, and they really impressed me – that AJ Haynes can wail.  After that show I spent a lot of time with their 2016 release, Get Gone, and I found to be a super solid rock effort.  So, it’s a good band with good songs at a good venue, which I believe sounds like a good time.  Let’s go.

Tix are $15.  Austin’s own Tamarron will open.

BONUS Show Recommendations:

Tonight:
- Feverbones, The Dan Ryan, Ben Millburn, Patch at Cheer Up Charlies
- Wild Child at 3ten ACL Live

Thursday:
- Still Corners, Dougie Poole at Stubb’s
- Loteria, Terry/Giddens/Roth Trio, Boodan and His Swamp Thing at Barracuda

Friday:
- Lemuria, Cayetana, Mikey Erg at The Sidewinder
- Knifight, Psalm Zero, Street Sects, Breakdancing Ronald Reagan at The Lemon Lounge
- Atmosphere, Brother Ali, deM atlas, Plain Ole Bill and Last Word at Emo’s
- Boyfrndz, Otis the Destroyer, Booty Control, Little Father at The Swan Dive
- Tameca Jones, DJ Kay Cali at Stubb’s
- Scott H. Biram at the Continental Club

Saturday:
- Dark Blue, LACE, Xetas, Krista Van Liew, Quin Galavais, The Gospel Truth at Barracuda
- Third Root, Tele Novella, James Hand at Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co.
- Matthew Logan Vasquez, Mean Jolene at the Continental Club
- Dylan LeBlanc, Motel Radio at 3ten ACL Live

Sunday:
- Annabelle Chairlegs, Las Robertas, Hidden Ritual, Lake of Fire at Hotel Vegas
- A Tribute to Leonard Cohen with Moving Panoramas, Star Parks, Grace Park, Alison Copeland, She Sir, Matthew Squires, Boonesboro, Summer Swells, Dan Grissom & Friends at Cheer Up Charlies
- Golden Boys, Quin Galavis, David Israel at Barracuda

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Diet Cig

January 17, 2017

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On April 7 the great Diet Cig will be rolling out their debut album, Swear I’m Good At This, and I’m really excited for it.  The band has done nothing but put out stellar emo/pop/punk tracks for the last two years, so there’s no way they fail me now!  Well, not really, plenty of bands have faltered when it comes full length time, but I have faith that Diet Cig will deliver the goods.  Below is the first single off of the album.  It is, of course, particularly spunky.  Enjoy.

PS – Be sure to catch the band at SXSW.

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