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Quickdraw: While We Were Sleeping – Part 2

January 7, 2014

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As promised, here’s another 10 tracks that we missed while hibernating throughout December.  Starting tomorrow we resume normal posting, which should be fun.  Let’s have a blast in 2014, friends.  Enjoy.

:The Dead Weather – Open Up (That’s Enough):  Solo is a word I was hoping Jack White would be holding onto for the rest of time, but here he is back with The Dead Weather.  You know what though?  This track is awesomely heavy and I love it.  The Third Man subscription series is where you can find this song. No word yet on when a full length can be expected.

:Phantogram – Fall In Love:  I’m very much looking forward to Phantogram’s upcoming full length.  It’s been a long time coming, and I’m really hoping it manages to at least come close to what I’m unfairly expecting.  Voices is set to be released on February 18 via Barsuk.

:Tokyo Police Club – Argentina (Parts I, II, III):  One of the more pleasant surprises to come out of December was the return of Tokyo Police Club via this nearly nine-minute long prog pop gem.  It’s good to have them back.  The band is expected to put out a full length at some point during the first part of this year.

:Abram Shook – Coastal:  Once upon a time Abram Shook was the vocalist of a band called The Great Nostalgic.  Now he’s doing his own thing, and as this track indicates, it’s stuff you need in your ears.  You’ll be able to pick up Sun Marquee on January 21.

:Warpaint – Biggy:  While I think that Warpaint have a neat sound, this track is the first of theirs that I’ve legitimately wanted to spend some quality headphone time with.  It’s superbly crafted.  Rough Trade will release the band’s self titled effort on January 21.

:Tiger Waves – Weekends:  Really nice work here by Austin’s Tiger Waves.  This catchy pop tune is easily one of their best songs.  The band has a single out now on Canvasback.

:Tele Novella – Umbrella At The Station:  Tele Novella got their start in Austin last year (out of the ashes of Agent Ribbons and Voxtrot), and they quickly impressed me.  I love their quirky pop sound.  At some point this year the band is expected to put out a debut full length.

:Damien Jurado – Silver Timothy:  A new Damien Jurado album is one of those things that should be celebrated by all.  The guy is a brilliant songwriter.  Brothers And Sisters Of The Eternal Son is due out January 21 via Secretly Canadian.

:The War On Drugs – Red Eyes:  I’d be a liar if I said I didn’t think this was the best thing The War On Drugs have ever done.  Their upcoming album is now one I’m anxious to check out.  Lost In The Dream is due out March 18 through Secretly Canadian.

:Robert Ellis – Only Lies:  When it comes to artists currently making country music, Robert Ellis is as good as it gets.  I dare you to not love his voice and its thoroughly classic sound.  The Lights From The Chemical Plant will be available on February 11 via New West.

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Jack Wilson, Tele Novella, The Black And White Years, Golden Bear, The Plastic Habit (Jennifer)

June 19, 2013

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Tomorrow singer/songwriter Jack Wilson is holding a record release party at The Mohawk.  His new album, Spare Key, was released last month on Fluff And Gravy Records. He writes raw, emotive songs that reflect on many of his personal experiences and journeys. His musical influences touch on folk and Americana, but you can also recognize more melodic pop influences ranging from The Beach Boys to Elliott Smith. His live performances are honed and fleshed out with a full band definitely worth seeing.  He’ll have CDs and LPs, and copies of the 7” 45 single Cigarette/Glow, featuring the Good Music Club performance of Rainbow/Tiger.  The bill is rounded out by The Preservation and Roger Sellers.

Tele Novella (ex-Agent Ribbons, JC & Co, Belaire) are back home in Austin from their West Coast tour. Give them a warm welcome at the 101X Homegrown Love show this Friday at Holy Mountain.  You’ll also find The Wolf, Daniel Francis Doyle, and Borrisokane on the lineup.

The Black And White Years have completed a new album to be released later this fall. They’re playing their first headlining show of 2013 at Stubb’s this Friday. There are plenty of new tunes to hear, but I’m sure that they’ll be playing plenty of old favorites. One of their new songs, Just Like Old Times, features Adrienne Butler, wife of lead singer/guitarist Scott Butler, on lead vocals. The bill is rounded out by local bands Tiger Waves and Shrines.

As if there wasn’t already enough happening on Friday, Frank has Golden Bear with Sun Marquee and Pink Nasty. This show (aka Summer Sweat Jam 2013) should be as sexy and fun as the gig poster, which features a photo of Tom Selleck from his Magnum PI days. For a $6 cover (and all ages), you’re getting a bargain full of top notch local, pop underground talent.

The Plastic Habit is holding a release party in celebration of their debut EP, Out Of The Airlock, this Saturday at Frank. Led by singer and guitarist Jonas Wilson, the band also features members of other notable Austin acts, including The White White Lights, Lomita, Okkervil River, Slowtrain, The Dialtones, and The Lovely Sparrows. Their sound alternates between power pop, glam rock, punk, and indie pop; it’s fun, loud, catchy, and maybe even a little bit sexy. Jonas Wilson is also an entertaining front man who is not afraid to let loose and have a good, sweaty fun onstage.  They’re joined by special guests The Gorgeous Hands and Chief White Lightning.

:The Plastic Habit – Out Of The Airlock:

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Slomo Drags, Boy + Kite, The Plastic Habit, Borrisokane, Black Books (Jennifer)

May 15, 2013

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There is so much good new local music happening lately; it’s a bit overwhelming but it’s a good problem to have. Tomorrow at Holy Mountain you can catch the live debut of indie pop/rock quartet Slomo Drags (including members of Cartographers, BOY, and The Couch). On the bill you’ll also find Boy + Kite, who are celebrating the release of their new EP, We Can Go Anywhere We Want (first 30 people to arrive will receive a copy of the new EP), and The Plastic Habit, whose glam/pop/punk sounds are from guitarist and producer Jonas Wilson (of The White White Lights).

After the show there will be a a special DJ set with Laurie Gallardo from KUTX. If you listen to her weeknight program on 98.9 FM, you know you’re in for a solid selection of quality, eclectic tunes.

If you’re not too wiped out from tomorrow’s extravaganza, I highly recommend going to Scottish Rite Theatre on Friday for another show chock full of local Austin music goodness. Borrisokane are celebrating the release of their new EP, Murdering Teeth, which features the outstanding single, A.F.E..  The song is guaranteed to get stuck in your head with its sultry vocals, sparkling and squiggly synths, and a chorus worthy of dancing and singing along. Their set will also include performances from three other up and coming local bands – Growl, Schmillion, and Knifight. The first 100 attendees will receive a copy of their EP.

This show also acts as a UK tour send off for psych/dream pop quintet Black Books, who have just released an album across the pond and will be playing some festival dates and opening for The Flaming Lips in London. Those two bands are reason enough to attend, but make sure to note that the evening also features sets from Letting Up Despite Great Faults and Tiger Waves.  Awesome.

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Shivery Shakes, Tiger Waves, She Sir, Walker Lukens, Warm Soda (Jennifer)

April 3, 2013

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One of the shows I’m looking forward to this week features three of my local guitar pop favorites. She Sir has been busy writing and recording the past couple of months, and I’m excited to hear more of their sparkling new tunes at tomorrow’s show at the Mohawk. They will be joined by the garage rock meets power pop sounds of Shivery Shakes and the shimmery, chillout vibes of Tiger Waves. This triple local threat is an excellent way to start off your live music weekend.

Walker Lukens is a singer/songwriter who is a recent Austin transplant. I first saw him perform during Austin Free Week playing a solo set. It just wasn’t a guy and his guitar. He was a one man band performing sonic experiments with vocal and instrumental loops resulting in an engaging, memorable, and entertaining performance. He (and his band The Side Arms) is celebrating the release of his debut album, Devoted, with a show at The North Door this Saturday with my favorites, Good Field and Growl as his special guests. $10 entry at the door includes a copy of the CD. Another top notch local triple threat that I highly recommend.

It’s no secret I’m a fan of the 2-3 minute pop song. During SXSW this year, I discovered a garage rock meets power pop gem from Warm Soda. They recently released their debut album, Someone For You, on Castle Face Records (home to artists like Ty Segall and Thee Oh Sees). You experience the sweet, giddy bubblegum rush from the irresistible pop hooks but there’s also the gritty garage/glam rock charm that keeps you coming back for more and hitting the repeat button.

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Quickdraw: Menomena, The Ruby Suns, Tiger Waves, Kinski, The Little Ones

January 22, 2013

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Today’s music wants to make out with you.  Enjoy.

:Menomena – Toomer:  These progressive fellas put out an album titled Moms last year, and a couple of the songs that didn’t make the cut have been packaged as a double A-side single.  More Menomena is always a good thing, so snatch the tracks up.  The band will soon head out on tour.

:The Ruby Suns – In Real Life:   While I’ve always liked this band, I’ve long wanted to love them.  Maybe their new album will make that happen.  This synth-filled number is certainly a pretty great start.  Sub Pop will release Christopher on February February 29.

:Tiger Waves – Fields:  Here’s one of Austin’s up and coming acts with a new song that was released in celebration of their upcoming tour.  It’s a rather pretty pop tune.  Tiger Waves will play the Mohawk tonight with Black Books after the Purity Ring show outside.  The rest of their dates can be seen here.

:Kinski – Conflict Free Diamonds:  It’s been so long since this band released anything that I just assumed they had called it quits.  Oops.  They’re actually still rocking, and I’m going to guess that they’re upcoming full length will be a good one.  Kill Rock Stars will put out Cosy Moments on April 2.

:The Little Ones – Forro:  If you’re browsing today’s post with the intention of just finding something that’s as joyous as can be, then this is it.  Crank the volume and have some fun.  The Branches Recording Collective will release The Dawn Sang Along on February 12.

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Local Live Picks (Jennifer)

January 16, 2013

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Free Week in Austin may be over, but there’s no rest for the wicked as there are several great local shows coming up this month. This Friday at Frank there is the killer triple bill of Gentlemen RoguesMoonlight Towers, and Excited States. This will be an evening of loud, ringing guitars with plenty of hooks and melody.  I’ve been a longtime fan of Gentlemen Rogues and Moonlight Towers, but in the past year I became a fan of local trio, Excited States. There’s no finished album just yet but they recently posted a couple of tunes on their Soundcloud page, and they’re chock full of tasty power pop goodness. Their gigs are infrequent so I encourage you to check them out this weekend at Frank. They open the show at 10pm followed by Moonlight Towers and then Gentlemen Rogues.

A few of my local favorites have month-long residencies worth checking out. Sabrina Ellis from Bobby Jealousy is a very busy woman this month with the Home Church Monday night residency with Bobby Jealousy and special guests at Hotel Vegas, and then Sabrina’s Foxy Nights, which is a solo residency (with special guests) on Wednesday nights at The Fox Tavern. Bobby Jealousy’s Free Week show last Friday at The Mohawk was such a blast, I’d love to see them again one of these January Mondays. If you prefer a mellower, more intimate atmosphere, I suggest going to one of solo shows at The Fox Tavern. If you missed out on his monthilong residency last August at The Parish, you have another chance to see Shakey Graves (the moniker of songwriter, Alejandro Rose-Garcia) every Wednesday night this month at The Parish. Word of mouth is spreading across the globe about him, so don’t miss your opportunity to see him in Austin for free at one of the best sounding venues in town. Doors open at 8pm; there are different special guests each week that open the show before Shakey takes the stage. He has some serious guitar picking skills and a charismatic yet easygoing stage presence.

Wednesday night seems to be popular night to host a residency. The Sweet Nuthin’ have put together A Very January Residency at Hole in the Wall. This fun, hard rockin’ quartet (plus special guests every week) will be celebrating January humpdays from 10pm-midnight. Tonight should be a rollicking good time as they are joined by their friend, Nic Armstrong. The Sweet Nuthin will be doing double duty – playing their own tunes and as members of Nic’s band, The Thieves. In addition to these monthly residencies, I also wanted to mention a couple of other special shows. Local symphonic pop ensemble, Linen Closet, is re-releasing their Bright Wing EP. The songs have been remixed and the EP is finding new life on cassette through the Accrue Cassettes label. This special show will be held on Sat Jan 19th at Central Presbyterian Church and feature an expanded lineup. Their performance at CPC last August was extraordinary – a perfect marriage of the band’s sound and setting. I’m looking forward to hearing their orchestral, melodic swirls fill the entire church once again.

Last but not least, a couple of local favorites will be launching their winter tour adventures. On Tuesday, January 22, local indie pop quartet, Tiger Waves, will be kicking off a Jan/Feb US tour at the Mohawk. Their surf and psychedelia influenced sound has been growing on me since I first saw them a year ago. Their Don’t Be Yourself EP and more are available to stream and download on Bandcamp. I especially love the Beach Boys meets Real Estate vibe on their Weekends single. I encourage you to give them a warm sendoff – they’re playing late after the sold out Purity Ring show with local dream pop quintet, Black Books. Touring is expensive so if you would like to help them out, you can do that on their Kickstarter page and/or purchase merchandise at their upcoming gigs. Prog pop band, The Eastern Sea, started their winter tour with The Kopecky Family Band on Monday and they’ll be returning to Austin on Saturday, January 19 to play at The Parish before going back on the road. They were one of my favorite highlights from Austin City Limits Festival 2012 (and released one of my favorite albums, Plague, of last year), and I highly recommend hearing them at the Parish.

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