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Top 50 Songs Of 2017

December 5, 2017

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Well look at that, here are my Top 50 Songs of 2017.  Enjoy.

50) Jamiroquai – Automaton

Jamiroquai still got it, man.

49) Matthew Logan Vasquez

I jammed this Matthew Logan Vasquez (of Delta Spirit fame) track on my radio show, 101X Homegrown, a lot this year. It’s fierce.

48) Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – Matter Of Time

I miss Sharon Jones.

47) Sheer Mag – Just Can’t Get Enough

Pure retro goodness here by Sheer Mag.

46) Weaves – Walkaway

Weaves churned out a really nice low key anthem here.

45) Filthy Friends – Any Kind Of Crowd

Corin Tucker sounds adorable in this Filthy Friends song.

44) Julien Baker – Appointments

Sad! Classic Julien Baker.

43) Wiretree – Let Me In

I love this sweet little number by Austin’s own Wiretree.

42) Hazel English – Fix

What a wonderfully hazy pop tune by Hazel English.

41) Mogwai – Eternal Panther

Somehow the best song that Mogwai put out this year isn’t on the album they released.

40) Alyeska – Stones

This 90s indie rock throwback from Alyeska is fantastic.

39) Land Of Talk – Loving

It’s so good to have Elizabeth Powell back in action as Land Of Talk.

38) The Kills – Desperado (Rhianna Cover)

The Kills really make this Rhianna track their own.

37) Why? – Proactive Evolution

I’ll never tire of Why?. This is one of my favorite songs by them.

36) The Octopus Project – Small Hundred

This song by The Octopus Project always makes me want to get up and move.

35) Fujiya & Miyagi – Solitaire

Another year, another infectious jam by Fujiya & Miyagi.

34) Carly Rae Jepsen – Cut To The Feeling

Can’t stop Carly.

33) The Courtneys – Silver Velvet

This is the catchiest song on The Courtneys’ album of really catchy songs.

32) Growl – New Sincerity.

Here’s some jangly pop perfection by Austin’s Growl.

31) Kane Strang – Oh So You’re Off I See

I revisited this slightly weird Kane Strang track a lot in 2017.

30) Beth Ditto – Oo La La

Beth Ditto really goes for it here.

29) Sports – Making It Right

This is a charming pop tune from Sports.

28) Wolf Parade – You’re Dreaming

Wolf Parade with a legit ear-pleaser.

27) Ought – These 3 Things

Ought went new wave here. Good move!

26) Waxahatchee – Never Been Wrong

Indie rock perfection by Waxahatchee.

25) The Rural Alberta Advantage – Toughen Up

The Rural Alberta Advantage made a big time jump back onto my radar with this song.

24) Screaming Females – Black Moon

I can’t wait for the new Screaming Females album. This first single is so damn good.

23) Protomartyr – Don’t Go to Anacita

Intense but great. Protomartyr are the best.

22) Sweet Spirit – The Power

What a big track by Austin’s Sweet Spirit.

21) Perfume Genius – Slip Sway

This is one of Perfume Genius’ best songs.

20) Spook School – Less Than Perfect

Spook School are as catchy as can be here.

19) Rhye – Taste

This Rhye track has an immaculate sound.

18) Jay Som – Baybee

Hazy, dancey, perfect stuff here by Jay Som.

17) Walker Lukens – Don’t Want To Be Lonely (Don’t Want To Leave You Alone)

Here’s a total ear-worm from Austin’s Walker Lukens.

16) The Blow – Get Up

This song from The Blow is a rambly as can be, but I love it.

15) LCD Soundsystem – Call The Police

The best song on LCD Soundsystem’s comeback album.

14) Diet Cig – Barf Day

The line “I know that you’re sorry, I just don’t care” will forever make me smirk. Thanks for that, Diet Cig.

13) Molly Burch – Wrong For You

It’s just about impossible to not love this retro-leaning effort from Austin’s own Molly Burch.

12) Lo Tom – Overboard

David Bazan is so good in this Lo Tom tune. I love his voice.

11) Football, etc. – Save

This track from Austin’s Football, etc. has an early 2000s indie rock vibe that I really dig.

10) The War On Drugs – Holding On

Headphones + this track from The War On Drugs = my happy place.

09) The Coathangers – Captain’s Dead

The Coathangers are on a real roll right now. This song is a blast.

08) Spoon – Do I Have To Talk You Into It

I love how loose Spoon sound here.

07) White Reaper – Judy French

So infectious. White Reaper continue to be big favorites of mine.

06) Alex Lahey – Every Day’s The Weekend

My favorite song from 2017 to sing-a-long to. Alex Lahey sure knows how to write an anthem.

05) The National – The System Only Dreams In Total Darkness

Heavy but accessible. Great track by The National.

04) SZA – Supermodel

I spent a couple of months obsessed with this SZA song. It’s so dramatic.

03) Kendrick Lamar – Humble

It was impossible to escape this Kendrick Lamar song in 2017. I didn’t mind.

02) St. Vincent – Los Ageless

St. Vincent is rather aggressive here, and it’s awesome.

01) Alvvays – In Undertow

This was practically my default song this year. It’s perfect. Thanks, Alvvays!

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The Coathangers

March 7, 2017

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The Coathangers have announced a new EP, Parasite (due June 30 via Suicide Squeeze), and even if I didn’t dig the first single, I’d still be excited for it because the artwork is amazingly ridiculous.  I mean, just look at it!  I want to blow it up, hang it over a fireplace and then watch people react to it.  Anyhow, the super catchy track Captain’s Dead awaits you down below.  Enjoy.


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Show Of The Week

February 8, 2017

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The Coathangers are playing Barracuda on Friday, and that’s my SOTW!  They’re so much fun to watch play.  Also, their most recent release, Nosebleed Weekend, is awesome and a big favorite of mine.  This all means you need to join me for what will surely be a raucous good time.

Tix are $12.  Locals Sailer Poon and Deep Time are set to open.

BY THE WAY, if you’d like to win a pair of tix for this Margin Walker Presents affair, then just shoot an email HERE.  I’ll pick a winner Friday morning!

BONUS Show Recommendations:

Tonight:
- Japandroids at Waterloo Records
- The Midnight Stroll, BLXPLTN, Fort Never at the Mohawk

Thursday:
- Chad Valley, Computer Magic, Children of Pop at The Sidewinder
- Carry Illinois, Belcurve, Cari Q, Magic Rockers of Texas at Hotel Vegas
- Miniature Tigers, Sam Turner & the Cactus Cats, The Halfways at Barracuda
- David Dondero, Lomelda at the Cactus Cafe

Friday:
- Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears at Waterloo Records
- Mind Spiders, Dead Space, Nameless Frames, Missing Pages at Beerland
- Night Birds, Drakulas, Obedience at the Mohawk
- Marmalakes, Palo Duro, Star Parks at The Sidewinder
- The Wild Now at Stubb’s
- Dashboard Confessional, Vinyl Theater at Emo’s
- Skin Drips, Evil Triplet, We Are The Asteroid, Downtown Dad at Hotel Vegas

Saturday:
- Big Bill, Lochness Mobsters, Mean Jolene, Leather Girls at Hotel Vegas
- A Sinclair, Bantam Foxes, Magic Rockers of TX at Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co.
- Hard Proof, Dante Shwebel at the Continental Club

Sunday:
- John Wesley Coleman III at Waterloo Records

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Top 25 Albums Of 2016

December 12, 2016

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Alright friends, here’s my full album list.  Unlike my Top 50 Songs of 2016, there are Austin acts here. As always, this isn’t some sort of “critical” list, it’s just the albums that I jammed the most this year.  Enjoy.

PS – Here’s a playlist of all the albums on Spotify!

25) Deftones – Gore

While I’ve always liked the Deftones, I haven’t legit loved an album of theirs since 2000′s PonyGore wrapped me up though – it’s really well crafted and features some great songs.  I went back to it often in 2016.

24) Nothing – Tired Of Tomorrow

At first I was slightly let down by Nothing’s sophomore effort, but after I spent some quality time with it I became pretty damn attached.  If you’re into shoegaze, then you need to listen to Tired Of Tomorrow.

23) Explosions In The Sky – The Wilderness

I love me some Explosions In The Sky.  By the way, my instrumental album rankings for 2016 go like this: 1) EITS’ The Wilderness, 2) Russian Circles’ Guidance and then 3) Mono’s Requiem For Hell.

22) Tancred – Out Of The Garden

There isn’t a song on Tancred’s Out Of The Garden that isn’t infectious.  Definitely a must-listen for fans of 90s indie/pop rock.

21) Thao And The Get Down Stay Down – A Man Alive

Thao continues to be one of my favorite singer/songwriters of all time.  I just connect with everything she churns out.

20) Bleached – Welcome The Worms

Bleached took a step away from surf rock on Welcome The Worms and it turned out to be a great move for them.  This album is so energetic.

19) Yung – A Youthful Dream

This kid – 22-year-old Mikkel Holm Silkjær – out of Denmark really impressed me with his debut as YungA Youthful Dream is noisy in all of the right ways.

18) A Giant Dog – Pile

Austin’s very own A Giant Dog have long been a favorite of mine, so I love that they totally crushed it on Pile, their debut for Merge Records.

17) Savages – Adore Life

I was obsessed with Savages’ Adore Life for the first few months of the year.  Eventually I was able to wiggle myself out of its intense pull, mostly.

16) Preoccupations – Self Titled

Just in case you forgot, Viet Cong is now Preoccupations.  In regards to their self titled effort, I love that the majority of it sounds like Interpol on artsy steroids.

15) Cross Record – Wabi Sabi

Wabi Sabi is a rather ethereal effort from Cross Record, a newer band out of Austin.  The whole thing is really damn good and it totally turned me into a big fan of theirs.

14) The Hotelier – Goodness

For those of you that love anthemic rock (with a dash of emo on top), here’s Goodness from The Hotelier.  I passionately rocked this album a lot in my car.

13) Frankie Cosmos – Next Thing

There isn’t a single song on Frankie Cosmos’ Next Thing that isn’t soaked in sincerity.  She has one of those voices that makes everything feel so very genuine.

12) Terry Malts – Lost At The Party

Any time Terry Malts put out an album, you can count on it being high up on my list.  They write super catchy stuff and in general are reliably awesome.

11) Cymbals Eat Guitars – Pretty Years

Pretty Years is one hell of an album.  At one point will the masses open up to Cymbals Eat Guitars?  Those guys should be playing huge rooms.

10) White Denim – Stiff

Stiff is another high quality set of jams from White Denim.  They remain a really big favorite of mine.

09) Whitney – Light Upon The Lake

Light Upon The Lake is quite possibly the most accessible album that I came across this year.  Seriously, there’s not a single track on Whitney’s debut that isn’t instantly likeable.

08) Basketball Shorts – Hot And Ready

Hot And Ready from Austin’s Basketball Shorts was a big go-to for me in 2016.  It’s 20-ish minutes of pop punk perfection.

07) Angel Olsen – My Woman

My Woman made me go from liking Angel Olsen to loving her.  What a next level effort.

06) Chance The Rapper – Coloring Book

For a while there, I only listened to Chance The Rapper’s Coloring Book.  It’s an inspired, energetic effort that features a lot of great songwriting.  It’ll be interesting to see where he goes from here.

05) Kanye West – The Life Of Pablo

Kanye’s The Life Of Pablo is a manic listen with a lot of layers.  He sure does have a lot going on in his head.

04) The Coathangers – Nosebleed Weekend

The Coathangers really hit a home run with Nosebleed Weekend.  It has a ton of great hooks and just the right amount of snarl.

03) Frank Ocean – Blonde

Frank Ocean’s Blonde is a hypnotic experience.  I’m not even sure how often I’ve listened to the entire thing after only intending to revisit one particular song.

02) Car Seat Headrest – Teens In Denial

They may not sound alike at all, but Car Seat Headrest’s Teens In Denials is like Frank Ocean’s Blonde – they’re both really hypnotic listens.  That Will Toledo is one hell of a songwriter.

01) White Lung – Paradise

Of all the EPs and LPs I listened to 2016, White Lung’s Paradise is the one that I jammed the most.  It’s loud and heavy and the best modern rock album I’ve come across in years. Congrats to the band for nailing it and grabbing the top spot on my list.

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Top 50 Songs Of 2016: Part 5

December 2, 2016

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Here’s the end of my “songs I liked a whole lot this year” list.  Enjoy.

PS – Just a reminder that there are no Austin acts to be found in any part of this list.  I’m going to be doing a two-part year-ender via 101X Homegrown (my radio show) that will detail my favorite local tracks.  Look for Part 1 to air on 12/11, and then Part 2 on 12/18.

Part 1 is HERE.
Part 2 is HERE.
Part 3 is HERE.
Part 4 is HERE.

PPS – I got a ton of take down notices, so you’ll have to listen via Spotify.

10)  :P.O.S. – Wave (Featuring Moncelas Boston And Sophia Eris):  P.O.S. didn’t put out an album this year, but he did release a handful of singles.  This slick-sounding effort finished the year as my favorite of the bunch.

09)  :White Lung – Kiss Me When I Bleed:  White Lung’s Mish Barber-Way commands all with her vocal work in this heavy track that aims to pummel.  Turn it up.

08)  :Chance The Rapper – Angels (Featuring Saba):  Chance The Rapper and Saba are as pleasant as can be in this joyous track – it’s infectious stuff.

07)  :Whitney – Golden Days:  This song from Whitney was a big go-to for me every time I needed a breather in 2016.  It’s so damn accessible and laid back.

06)  :Coathangers – Squeeki Tiki:  Admittedly, a part of me couldn’t pass up the opportunity to put a squeaky toy-enhanced track in the top 10 of my year-end song list.  Also, it’s scuzzy and creative and perfect and deserving of everyone’s love.  Thanks for the jam, Coathangers!

05)  :Shura – What’s It Gonna Be?:  This one from Shura is easily my favorite straight up pop tune of 2016.  It may also be the winner of this year’s “song that John poorly sang-a-long to the most” award.

04)  :Cymbals Eat Guitars – Have a Heart:  If I were to rank out every Cymbals Eat Guitars song, I’d be tempted to put this one in the top spot.  What a track.

03)  :Frank Ocean – Solo:  This is one seriously hypnotic effort from Frank Ocean.  That fella is a hell of a crooner.

02)  :Angel Olsen – Shut Up Kiss Me:  Every time I hear this song I just want to high five Angel Olsen and go rollerskating.  I love the way she pulls no punches here.

01)  :Kanye West – Ultralight Beam:  Is this song absolutely ridiculous?  Yes.  I mean, it’s Kanye West, so of course it’s ridiculous.  It also happens to be amazing though, and I love it.  Definitely the song I blasted the most in 2016 … probably because it was the most ridiculous year ever and I needed the right song to accompany me through it.

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The Coathangers

March 29, 2016

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I’m fairly certain I’ve never looked at one of those squeaky dog toys and thought it would be great if someone used the mildly annoying sound it makes in a song, but The Coathangers have done exactly that in their latest single, and I’m digging it.  Granted, it doesn’t hurt that it’s just one part of a track that’s pretty damn great overall.  Enjoy.

:The Coathangers – Squeeki Tiki:

Nosebleed Weekend is due out June 15 via Suicide Squeeze.  You’ll be able to see the band open for Refused at the Mohawk on June 5.

Bonus Video:

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Quickdraw: Solids, The Coathangers, Bleached, Purple, Frightened Rabbit

February 22, 2016

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Music!  Enjoy.

:Solids – Blank Stare:  “YES!”  That’s what I exclaimed when this new tune from Solids slid into my inbox.  The sound here is thick, but the song itself is still hooky.  I love it.  The Else EP is due out April 15 via Topshelf/Dine Alone.

:The Coathangers – Nosebleed Weekend:  Here’s the title track off of The Coathangers’ upcoming LP.  It’s not quite as snarly as the band usually is, but there’s still enough attitude on display to get your week started right.  Nosebleed Weekend is due out April 15 via Suicide Squeeze.  See them on June 5 at the Mohawk.

:Bleached – Wednesday Night Melody:  While I’m slightly weirded out by the way this song starts off like a mix of Beverly Hills and I Love Rock N’ Roll, I like that Bleached are trying to expand their sound.  Welcome The Worms is due out April 1 via Dead Oceans.

:Purple – Bliss:  I really love this pop rock gem from the Texas-based Purple.  Good luck getting it out of your head.  Bodacious is due out April 1.

:Frightened Rabbit – Death Dream:  What a wonderfully moody track this is.  I think it has me ready to get back to fully paying attention to Frightened RabbitPainting Of A Panic Attack is due out April 8 via Canvasback/Atlantic.

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The Coathangers

January 21, 2016

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It’s 2016, and that means The Coathangers have now been around for a decade.  Holy cow!  If I were them, I’d totally spend the year napping and watching TV.  They’re not me though (thankfully), so instead they’re going to put out their fifth full length, Nosebleed Weekend, and (I assume) tour a lot.  Good on them.  Their catchy and seemingly-titled-to-fit-my-life-right-now single awaits you below.  Enjoy.

:The Coathangers – Make It Right:

Nosebleed Weekend is due out April 15 via Suicide Squeeze.

Bonus Video:

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Quickdraw: Sweet Spirit, Ex Hex, Car Seat Headrest, The Coathangers, Courtney Barnett

October 8, 2015

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Music.  Enjoy!

:Sweet Spirit – Take Me To A Party:  Here’s the latest catchy pop tune from Sweet Spirit.  I have a feeling I’m going to end up spending a lot of time with their upcoming debut full length.  Cokomo is due out October 16 via Nine Mile Records.

:Ex Hex – All Kindsa Girls (The Real Kids Cover):  Ex Hex randomly tossed out this one-off cover a few days ago.  I dig it.  Probably because it sounds exactly like all of the other stellar songs the band has released.

:Car Seat Headrest – Times To Die:  This nearly seven-minute track from Car Seat Headrest is an all-around weird effort, but I can’t seem to get enough of it.  Been on repeat for days now.  Teens Of Style is due out October 30 via Matador.

:The Coathangers – Watch Your Back:  No one packs a song with attitude quite like The Coathangers.  Crank the volume on this one.  The band’s split 7″ with The Black Lips is due out November 13 via Suicide Squeeze.  See the band at Sidewinder on October 30.

:Courtney Barnett – Shivers (The Boys Next Door Cover):  As I’ve said before, my favorite Courtney Barnett is the wordy, scatterbrained one, but even when she’s the opposite of that – like here with this slow burning cover – I’m still on-board.  The Boxing Day Blues Revisited single is due out October 16 via Third Man Records.

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Quickdraw: Maserati, The Coathangers, Maus Haus, Teen Daze, Punks On Mars

September 13, 2012

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Today’s music has electrolytes.  Enjoy.

:Maserati – Earth-Like:  I’m sure you’re already in the loop on Maserati.  They’re instrumental.  They’re good.  What you may not know, though, is that their new drummer is Mike Albanese (from Cinemechanica), and he’s pretty damn fantastic.  I hope I get to see them live with him.  The band will release Maserati VII on October 2 via Temporary Residence LTD.

:The Coathangers – Merry Go Round:  This band seems to prefer putting out singles in place of an EP or LP, and that’s fine by me.  Or, at least it is until their streak of catchy garage rock gems comes to an end and I then demand something with more substance.  You can pre-order the Coathangers’ split 7″ (with Heavy Cream) on Suicide Squeeze now.

:Maus Haus – No More Girls:  It’s been years since I’ve heard anything from this act, so I was a little surprised when word of a new EP popped up yesterday.  Good to have them back.  Expect to dig this track if you like your synths to enter your ears in an aggressive fashion.  The Light Noise EP is due out October 23 on Lavish Habits.

:Teen Daze – Union (Featuring Frankie Rose):  The guest spot here by the lovely Frankie Rose is a nice touch, but I actually think this pop tune would be fine without it.  I especially love the way the quick start gradually slows to an intimate pace.  Teen Daze will release The Inner Mansions, which is the act’s second 2012 full length, on November 6 via Lefse Records.

:Punks On Mars – Showers Of Pain:  This overly infectious number is the only track I know by this band, but that’s not going to stop me from jumping right up on their bandwagon.  I must seek out more of their music.  We can all expect to be able to grab Bad Expectations on October 30 via Zoo Music.

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