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Show Of The Week

July 1, 2015

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There’s some solid local stuff this week that you could catch (Summer Salt at Cheer Up Charlie’s, The Heavenly States at Continental Club) and a couple good touring acts in town (Blonde Redhead at Mohawk, Jacco Gardner at Red 7), but the only show I can truly recommend is Mono (with Holly Hunt) at Red 7 tomorrow night.  I’ve been a fan of the band since the early 2000s, and I absolutely love seeing them play.  Their slow building post-rock sound combined with how passionate they are on stage always makes for an overwhelming experience, and you should totally be there for it.  I certainly will.

By the way, the good folks at Transmission gave me a pair of guest list spots to give away.  If you’d like to come out and tear up with me when Mono plays Ashes In The Snow, then email me HERE or leave a comment.  I’ll put everyone in a hat and pick a winner tomorrow.

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Say Girl Say

June 30, 2015

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I just found out about Houston’s Say Girl Say about a week or so ago, but I’ve quickly become a fan of their experimental folk ways.  Below you’ll find a track off of their new full length.  It features some stellar vocal work from Brigette Yawn and Suzan Zaghmouth, and I think that overall the song feels like a breath of fresh air.  Enjoy.

:Say Girl Say – Ayahua II:

The band’s self titled album is out now via Bandcamp.

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Quickdraw: Wavves + Cloud Nothings, White Reaper, Low, Mas Ysa, Keeper

June 29, 2015

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Wavves + Cloud Nothings – No Life For Me:  Over the weekend Ghost Ramp set free the previously announced album from Nathan Williams (Wavves) and Dylan Baldi (Cloud Nothings).  I haven’t had a chance to listen to the whole thing yet, but this sloppy, hooky track has me excited to dive into it.  No Life For Me is available now via Bandcamp.

:White Reaper – Pills:  Here’s the latest infectious single from White Reaper.  I just got sent their debut LP, and as soon as I have a chance I’m cracking it open and listening to it for forever (well, maybe not for-ev-er).  White Reaper Does It Again is due out July 17 via Polyvinyl.

:Low – No Comprende:  20+ year vets Low have put together a new full length.  This first single is pretty much what you’d expect from the band, but that’s hardly a bad thing.  Ones And Sixes is due out September 11 via Sub Pop.

:Mas Ysa – Arrows:  It’s kind of weird to hear Mas Ysa’s vulnerable voice/songwriting/everything over a club-ready arrangement, but it works.  Seraph is due out July 24 via Downtown Records.  See him at Red 7 on July 17.

:Keeper – Next To Me:  I just got around to discovering this track from Austin’s own Keeper.  It’s an R&B-inspired effort that’s been slickly produced, and I think it’s fantastic.  Moonhigh is expected out later this year via Freshmoon.

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Les Zombies (Single Premiere)

June 26, 2015

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Because I haven’t already spent enough time this week trying to convince you to go to the Blackheart tomorrow night, I’m here today with one final push via Les Zombies.  The fairly new band (they formed last year) are set to play at 8pm, and SOTO is premiering their new single with the expectation that you’ll use it as a reason to roll out to the show early to see them.  As for the Mike McCarthy-produced track, it’s a nice slice of indie pop that features some compelling voice work by Alexandra Anthony and a steady-paced, well-layered arrangement.  You’re going to like it.  Enjoy.

:Les Zombies – Unravel:

Do yourself a favor and check out the band’s Soundcloud page for some other tunes.  And for the 40th time, come to the Blackheart tomorrow.  Free show!

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Courtney Barnett (Video Premiere)

June 25, 2015

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Photo by PJ Pantelis

Courtney Barnett is currently a big favorite of mine.  I adore her album, Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit, and I love seeing her perform.  That’s why I jumped on the chance to premiere one of the song’s off of a full performance that the slick folks over at Moshcam recently shot.  It’s her LP’s opening track (or the Side One Track One, if you will), Elevator Operator, and it’s a fun watch/listen.  Enjoy.

PS – Be sure to visit Moshcam on July 6 so that you can check out the full 16-track show that they filmed.

Moshcam, the world’s home of live music video, have filmed over 1,000 gigs in the last few years. From Alabama Shakes, to Slash, PJ Harvey and Hot Chip, and in some of the world’s best venues, too! You can stream live music until your heart’s content for free at Moshcam’s website.

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Show Of The Week

June 24, 2015

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Hey!  In place of the recently blog-departed Jennifer Leduc, I’m going to start recommending a show every week.  Sometimes they’ll be local, sometimes they won’t.  Either way, it’ll be something I think you should be attending.  Enjoy.

If you’re going to get out this weekend, my recommendation is to head to the Blackheart on Saturday, as there’s four interesting things going down there.  The Midgemen are celebrating the release of their new album, Hobbytown, The Sour Notes are returning from a summer tour, it’s the live debut of Suburban Slang (Ram Vela, formerly of Whitman), and Lowin will be closing out their month-long residency.  Also, and this part is key, it’s a FREE show.  If you ask me, it’s hard to beat four bands on one bill who each have an occasion to go all out for.  Be there.

Inside Stage:
12:00 – Lowin
10:40 – The Sour Notes
9:20 – Super Thief
8:00 – Les Zombies

Outside Stage:
11:20 – The Midgetmen
10:00 – Que Pasa?
8:40 – Suburban Slang

:The Midgetmen – King Kong:
:The Midgetmen – Titus Mollard:
:The Sour Notes – Do What May:
:The Sour Notes – Two Hands Wait:
:Lowin – Heave Ho:
:Lowin – Best Laid Plans:

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The Midgetmen (Single Premiere)

June 23, 2015

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Anytime The Midgetmen ready a new album or just leave their compound, it’s an event.  So, of course I offered up SOTO when they came a-calling for a place to debut a song off of their new album, Hobbytown.  Below you’ll find it in all of its glory.  Like much of the band’s material, it’s sloppy and raucous and you shouldn’t be surprised if it leaves you wanting to down a case of cheap beer with your best buds.  Enjoy.

By the way, unless you somehow can’t afford FREE, you should go the Blackheart this Saturday for The Midgetmen’s Record Release Show.  Again, it’s FREE, and you’ll also get to see quality acts like The Sour Notes, Lowin and more!

:The Midgetmen – Titus Mollard:

Hobbytown is due out on June 27.  I listened to all of it (despite my doctor advising otherwise) and I think it’s pretty solid.  Pre-order it HERE.

PS – I wrote this post while listening to Taylor Swift’s 1989 on vinyl.  This isn’t a confession or particularly relevant to anything, I just know that it’ll baffle Marc from The Midgetmen.

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Quickdraw: Kiiara, Annie Girl And The Flight, Say Hi, Sarn, Good Field

June 22, 2015

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Kiiara – Gold:  I’ve gone back and forth on this Kiiara song a lot.  Sometimes I feel like there’s too much going on, other times I think it sounds adventurous and interesting.  Either way, since I keep revisiting it I believe that’s reason enough to share it.  The Meet Me In The Cornfield EP is expected out later this year.

:Annie Girl And The Flight – Bodies:  Last year San Francisco’s Annie Girl And The Flight played one of the SOTO shows at the Blackheart, and I ended up being really impressed with them.  They usually have a sort of Warpaint/Denali-esque sound, but here there’s a livelier kick at play.  It works well.  The Bodies EP is currently available.

:Say Hi – Creatures Of The Night:  The new Say Hi (aka Eric Elbogen) album is about vampires and a direct sequel to his also-about-vampires-album Impeccable Blahs.  So there’s that.  At any rate, this is a goofy track, but I like it.  Bleeders Digest is due out September 18 via Barsuk.  See him at Stubb’s on October 14.

:Sarn – Go Tell It To A Wall:  “Just keep yourself from speaking/There’s a reason I keep walking on”  Sarn’s voice sounds so sincere and sweet, but he is not fucking around – he really has no interest in anything you have to say.  I dig it.  The John Vanderslice-produced Go Tell It To A Wall EP is out now via Bandcamp.

:Good Field – Business:  Paul Price, the main brain behind Good Field (and formerly of Brazos, The Early Tapes and Voxtrot) has readied a new album.  This first single is particularly well crafted and oddly catchy.  Future Me is due out July 28.  See them at the Parish on July 18.

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Sad Bastard Music: Regretful June (John Gross)

June 19, 2015

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Welcome to another blog post that is full of nothing but Sad Bastard Music. This month, let’s explore regrets. Letting yourself and others down is a bummer feeling. Regrets can be anything as minor as wasting time drinking beer or as major as not being able to treat a relationship the way it may have deserved thus causing it to crumble. Let’s get into REGRETS!

:The Afghan Whigs – Regret:  I’ve posted the Get Up Kids version of this song before because it’s a great track, but I came across this mid-90s Whigs version recorded live in Boston and wanted to share it. The protagonist in this cover version of the 1993 New Order classic tries to assure himself and the world that he is capable of not being a sadsack. He’s trying to convince the world that he is capable of being normal when for whatever reason he is broken. Some fans claim it’s about the notion of celebrity, but I know it is regret from a relationship gone wrong.  NOTE: The song kicks in at about 2:20 after an awful lot of on stage banter.

:David Bowie – Sorrow:  Originally by a group called The McCoys, this appears on the 1973 Bowie album of covers, Pin Ups. It is great. This is total glammy rock but it’s dripping in remorse and regret. “You’re out there playing your high class games of sorrow” and leaving Thin White Duke all alone!

:Ben Folds Five – Regrets:  From the brilliant 1999 concept album The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner, this song paints a picture of the bad feeling of not doing enough for grandparents before they pass, as well as a weird police mistaken idea mixup. The song ends with a MEGA half-time-tempo, full choir, tympanis, and fuzzed-out bass production making this little ditty a certifiable monster jam.

:St. Vincent – Regret:  From St. Vincent’s self-titled album, this John Congleton produced track (!) touches on not allowing yourself to be happy, being scared of commitment and simultaneously the fear of being left alone. It’s a self fulfilling ouroboros of anxiety that goes on and on and on and on. This is one of my favorites by St. Vincent, and there are many.

“I’m afraid of heaven because I can’t stand the heights

I’m afraid of you because I can’t be left behind”

:The New Pornographers – Daughters of Sorrow:  Dan Bejar’s trademark voice is a national treasure. This track off their 2013 effort Together will make you pump your fists right and sway back and forth all over the course of about three minutes. Bum bum bum bah bah. USA! USA!

:Neon Indian – Should Have Taken Acid With You:

“Should have taken acid with you/ Take our clothes off in the swimming pool

Should have taken acid with you/ Told my parents that I’m staying with you”

TALK ABOUT REGRETS!

:Au Revoir Simone – Don’t See The Sorrow:  Here we have a sweet song about wanting a love to make some room for the protagonist. But it’s just not happening. Add in a waltz casiotone beat and plenty of airy harmonies and we’ve clearly got ourselves a sad bastard song.

:American Football – But The Regrets Are Killing Me:  I’m pretty sure all of the American Football songs will one day be included in these sad music mixes … but we’ll start here. The song takes place at a juncture after four years of a relationship, presumably high school or college. “A long goodbye with mixed emotions, just fragments of another life” with angular guitar noodling and odd time signatures that build and build and build to the self-realized proclamation: “ I’m not dead yet, but the regrets are killing me.”

**********

Come listen to a ton MORE songs of misery at the next NO DANCING: Sad Bastard Music, DJ GrossYall’s monthly night of nothing but heartbreaking songs of tragedy at The Volstead. Look – here’s a facebook invite!

Featuring everything from Elliott Smith to Hank Williams and Sam Cooke to Cat Power, this free night of songs of hyper-melancholy is a safe space to get lonely. NO DANCING is the only place in town where you’re able to hear the sounds of people’s relationships falling apart through loud speakers with a craft beverage in your hands and all the Kleenex you could possibly need.

Join in at the Volstead June 23rd !

Like NO DANCING on Facebook to be up to date with happenings.

XO. Goodbye.

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DSTVV (Noah)

June 18, 2015

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It’s always a bummer to hear a band, think “wow, what a great band”, and then read in the same place where you just recently discovered said band, that, well, this is their last album. DSTVV, the band in question, refers to themselves as “industrial grungegaze” which to my ears sounds like a jagged pillow of 90s flannel-rock stretched a little wider, before being kicked in the ass with some pounding drum-machine riffs. Lead singer Joel Cusumano, a member of Cocktails, Talkies and Stalls – new staples of the San Francisco scene – might very well be the definition of disaffected monotone. But with all the thrashing and guitar sliding going around behind it, the simplicity of it, the affected boredom, feels like a lifeline, something to grab on to while you’re enjoying the brain-smashing drums and razor-blade tipped cloud of music floating around you. And as happy as I am to have discovered DSTVV and their musical equivalent of, happily, rolling around in a pile of very pretty, very sharp metal, it’s bittersweet, as their newest release, Target Demographic, will also be their last. Hello DSTVV, goodbye DSTVV, it was nice to get sonically mauled by you.

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Quickdraw: Ratatat, Weaves, Parquet Courts, Cherry Glazerr, Beck

June 18, 2015

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Ratatat – Abrasive:  Here’s the new single off of Ratatat’s upcoming album.  I’m assuming that titling it Abrasive was some kind of inside joke because it’s immaculately crafted and a total joy to listen to.  Magnifique is due out July 17 via XL Recordings.

:Weaves – Tick:  Shame on me for missing out on this squirrely little jam by Weaves when it was released a couple of weeks back.  It’s really damn good.  I believe the band’s debut album will be out later this year.  It’ll probably be great.

:Parquet Courts – Pretty Girls (Joey Pizza Slice Cover):  “Sunshine is a mother fucker/Pretty girls is a mother fucker/Happiness is a mother fucker”  Now that’s a positive message!  Parquet Court’s split 7″ with Joey Pizza Slice (they cover each other on it) is due out August 11 via Wharf Cat.

:Cherry Glazerr – Sip ‘O Poison:  The Adult Swim Singles series is back!  I’ve always liked how it allows bands to operate outside of their usual comfort zone, and Cherry Glazerr definitely are doing that here.  I didn’t think they had such an aggressive sound in them.

:Beck – Dreams:  I know it’s only June, but I’m pretty certain we can go ahead and label this new one from Beck as the definitive song of this summer.  What an immensely infectious effort it is.  The Dreams single is out now.

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See You Around (Jennifer)

June 17, 2015

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Just over five years ago, I started my own personal music blog, Superpop, after some persuasion and encouragement from friends and acquaintances. Writing has never been my greatest skill but I pursued it anyway with plenty of trial and error. My expectations with blogging can be summed up as: “I’m just a girl writing about music. If anyone likes it, that’s a bonus.” Not quite four years ago, I met John Laird and Dan Corbin from SOTO. This meeting eventually led to becoming part of a blogger “family” of sorts – with the SOTO crew as well as becoming acquainted with folks from other Austin music blogs. During these past few years, I’ve met so many talented, creative, passionate, funny, and kind people that have given me a reason to call Austin my home for the past 18 years. While I’ve enjoyed the music blogger experience, it’s time to pass the torch to another music lover. Who knows what will happen next? You might spot me on the Greenbelt, the Hike and Bike Trail, or trying out a new food trailer. You will continue to find me at shows once in awhile, but it has become time for me to take a step back from music and pursue other activities and interests. Music will always remain part of my life living in Austin whether or not I’m on the pages of a blog, and I can’t imagine not showing support to my favorite local bands.  So, I think that’s what I’ll leave you with, a reminder to support your local music scene. Go to a show or buy something!

See you around.

PS – Here’s my send-off song, it’s Buttercup’s Hello Goodbye.

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Shannon And The Clams

June 16, 2015

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Last year Shannon And The Clams released a 7″ single, Mama, that I’ve never been able to get enough of.  Time now though to move on, and I’m doing so with the first single (in both mp3 and video form) off of their new full length.  It’s not quite as soul-enthused or lo-fi as Mama, but I do very much love the dramatic way that it creeps along.  Enjoy.

:Shannon And The Clams – Corvette:

Gone By The Dawn is due out September 11 via Hardly Art. Also, they have an Austin show set for October 2, but it currently has the venue listed as TBA.

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A Giant Dog (Video Premiere)

June 15, 2015

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Late last week my new pals over at Sofar Los Angeles reached out about SOTO premiering a video of Austin’s own A Giant Dog performing a song called Jizzney.  To be honest, the title of the song and my love for A Giant Dog had me ready to say yes before I even watched anything, but the vid is actually really impressive and a lot different than I expected.  In place of the band’s normally explosive approach is a stripped down performance that features just two of its five members – Sabrina Ellis and Andrew Cashen.  You’re going to dig it.  Enjoy.

By the way, you catch see A Giant Dog at Cheer Up Charlie’s this Friday.

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Quickdraw: Health, The Cairo Gang, Diane Coffee, Tearjerker, jj

June 15, 2015

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Health – Stonefist:  Whenever I listen to this I can’t help but picture a dark, hazy club with far too many lasers and strobes wildly going off.  Hopefully that’s what Health was going for.  Death Magic is due out August 7 via Loma Vista Recordings.

:The Cairo Gang – Be What You Are:  This little retro pop tune is just about as pleasant as can be.  If the rest of The Cairo Gang’s upcoming LP is equally ear-pleasing, I may end up spending a lot of time with it.  Goes Missing is due out June 23 via God? Records.

:Diane Coffee – Everyday:  Foxygen have lost the weird magic that initially made me love them, but at least Shuan Fleming (their drummer) is still going strong as Diane Coffee.  I really like this scatterbrained but inspired song.  Everybody’s A Good Dog is due out September 4 via Western Vinyl.

:Tearjerker – Obviously Wrong:  Shoegaze without a wall of a sound pounding your ears – that’s probably the best way to describe this gem from Tearjerker.  I’m excited to check out their new album.  Stay Wild is due out July 17.

:jj – Truce:  “I’m on the news/I hear my enemies screaming/We want truce”  This sassy as fuck new track from jj has been cracking me up for days.  More please.  The Truce single will be out later this month via Sincerely Yours.

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