Saturday, 30 June 2018

The Beths - Happy Unhappy

1.    Who?

The Beths are an alternative pop band from Auckland, New Zealand, who bring together influences from 90’s guitar music, 2000’s pop punk and mix it together with 60’s pop harmonies. Happy Unhappy (June'18) is the third single from their debut album Future Me Hates Me (Aug'18).

2. What kind of tune is Happy Unhappy? 

An irrepressibly bright and bubbly alternative pop song led by a captivating vocal soaring lightly above bittersweet lyrics and with delicious phrasing. A little guitar noise, especially in the coda, keeps the song grounded and juxtaposes well with the cute harmonies. A great mood maker.

3. Who do The Beths sound like?

Sixpence None The Richer, Alvvays, and Loose Tooth. 

4. What have the press said about Happy Unhappy?

“The Beth’s ‘Happy Unhappy’ is the song of summer” – Rolling Stone. 

“It’s really good” – Noisey Vice.

“Brilliant slice of sunshine filled alternative pop” – It’s Too Loud. 

5. Which bands have influenced The Beths? 

A few of their influences are Death Cab For Cutie, Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, Courtney Barnett, Alvvays, The Cars, Weezer, The Modern Lovers, and Cole Porter. 

6. Why should I listen to Happy Unhappy? 

For the phrasing in the verses and the wry lyrics. 

7. Do The Beths have any other good tunes? 

Whatever brings a harder alternative rock sound to play. 

8. Any more words? 

All four band members studied jazz at university. 

Alvvays are an indie pop band from Toronto, Canada. They started playing together in 2011 and have recorded two albums. Alvvays sound similar to The Primitives, Best Coast, and Camera Obscura. They are influenced by Teenage Fanclub, Magnetic Fields, and The Smiths. Plimsol Punks (Aug'17) is the third single from their second album Anitsocialites (Sept'17). River Front Times thought Plimsol Punks is, “irresistibly catchy with a sugar filled chorus.” It's also a song, that is, as the title suggests, about pretentious cunts.

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes - Headfirst (It's All Happening)

1.    Who? 

Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes are an indie rock band from Nashville, Tennessee. Headfirst (It's All Happening) (June'18)is a single from their third album Fashion (August'18). 

2. What kind of tune is it? 

Headfirst (It's All Happening) is a change in musical direction for this good times rock'n'roll band. Bouncy synth, a bass drum and vocals barely sustain interest for the first two and a half minutes but then the song explodes to life with a dark all-in rock out at the two and a half minute mark making the patient wait worth while. Rinse and repeat.

3. Who do Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes sound like? 

Beirut and Young The Giant.

4. What is the word from the people about Headfirst (It's All Happening)

“The sound life makes when it becomes ecstasy” – The Low Down Under. 

“A rallying cry for Daniel Ellworth & The Great Lakes” – Magnet Magazine.

“Eclectic-synth indie-rock” – Bong.

5. Which bands have influenced Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes? 

Some of their influences include Wilco, Paul Simon, Tame Impala, Kendrick Lamar, and Spoon. 

6. Why should I give Headfirst (It's All Happening) a spin? 

Because it's a reasonable introduction to a great band. For the all-in kicking in.

7. What other bangers do they have? 

Sun Goes Out is a divine indie rocker, the crown jewel. Shoe Fits and Always/Never are the dogs bollocks too. 

8. Any more words champ? 

Fashion was produced by Kyle Andrews

Brian Fallon is the singer and guitarist for Gaslight Anthem. He is from New Jersey and is known for his heartland rock music. Brian Fallon sounds like Bruce Springsteen and Van Morrison. His main influences are Bruce Springsteen, The Clash, and Pearl Jam. If Your Prayers Don't Get To Heaven (Dec'17) was the second single from Brian Fallon's second solo album Sleepwalkers (Feb'18) and is an attempt to recreate a Motown/Muscle Shoals sound. The song pops.

Monday, 25 June 2018

The Spitfires - New Age


1.    Who?

The Spitfires are a socially conscious indie rock band with an old school English punk side to them. They are from Watford, England, and New Age (June'18) is a single from their third album Year Zero (July'18).

2. What kind of tune is it? 

New Age is next generation English guitar rock. Born of bands like The Clash, The Jam, The Specials, and singing about what's important to them, now. Which in this case is crusty cunts who refuse to change. But as always the music comes first. M, melodic, but with a sense of urgency and anger. A song that, for all it's obvious influences, feels immediate and relevant.

3. Who do The Spitfires sound like? 

SHARP/SHOCK, The Rifles, and The Jam. 

4. What have the press said about New Age? 

“Speaks to the youth and welcomes a new age of British guitar music” – New SoundExpress. 

“Loud guitars and energy with a sort of ‘back to basics’ approach” – Merch Bar.

“Their sound is original but full of the best of the best classic British guitar influences” – New Music Times. 

5. Which bands have influenced The Spitfires? 
Some of their influences are UB40, TOUTS, The Ordinary Boys, The Beautiful South, and Madness. 

6. Why should I give New Age a spin? 
For the Specials-eque breakdown or because you like music with a word to say. 

7. What other bangers do The Spitfires have? 
On My Mind is the one you want. 

8. Anything else? 
The Spitfires have supported both The Specials and Paul Weller (The Jam). 

Buster Shuffle are a ska rock'n'roll band from London. They started together in 2007 and have four albums in the vault. Buster Shuffle are similar to Madness and Heavyball. They are influenced by The Clash, Madness and Ian Dury. You're Alright is a track from their debut album Our Night Out (2010). 

lovelytheband - These Are My Friends

1. Who? 

lovelytheband are an indie pop band from Los Angeles; because of course they are, just look at the name of the band. They have been playing together for two years. Their first single Broken (2017) went to number one in the Billboard alternative charts; because of course it did, just look at these punters. These Are My Friends (May'18) is their follow up and a standalone single at the minute.

2. What kind of song is These Are My Friends? 

These Are My Friends is a languid campfire singalong pop gem with feel good lyrics about acceptance. The tune is voice driven with assistance from acoustic guitar and bombastic drums. A generic, radio-friendly, chest-thumper made for glass-half-full days. 

3. Who do lovelytheband sound like? 

Coast Modern, Dr Dog, and Grouplove. 

4. What is the word about These Are My Friends?

“Summer getaway song” – Verge Campus. 

“Lyrics as honest as they are genuine” – The Feature Story. 

“Catchy, albeit vapid” – YouTube Comments. 

5. Which bands influenced lovelytheband?

Their main influences are Dashboard Confessional, Frank Ocean, Bon Iver, Brian Adams, and Bruce Springsteen.

6. Why should I listen to These Are My Friends? 

Because you're looking for mindless playlist filler. Because sometimes style trumps substance. 

7. What other good songs do lovelytheband have? 

Broken doesn't suck donkey dick. 

8. Any more words? 

lovelytheband are out on tour performing fluffer duties for AWOLNATION on their Out Come The Runts tour. 

Dr Dog are an indie rock band from Philladelphia. They have been together since 1999 dabbling in lo-fi, Americana, folk, and psych-rock. Dr Dog are most famous for the Blur-esque song Lonesome. They are similar to Eels, My Morning Jacket and Delta Spirit. Dr Dog's main influences are Neil Young, The Zombies and The Beach Boys. Under The Wheels is an album track from their tenth album Critical Equation (April'18). Under The Wheels is the highlight of the album, a 60's/70's influenced pop-rocker in the mold of Steve Miller.

Saturday, 23 June 2018

The Tins - Sun Dried Mind


1. Who? 
The Tins are an indie rock (60's psychedelic pop/new wave art rock) band from Buffalo, New York. Sun Dried Mind (May'18) is the second single from their second album The Shine (June'18). 

2. What kind of song is it? 

Sun Dried Mind opens with euphoric, effervescent pop and a singalong chorus. Fuzzy guitar adds contrast and gravitas. An instantly likeable song that oozes joy on a religious scale.

3. Who do The Tins sound like? 

The Shins, Bear Hands, and Spoon. 

4. What is the word in the press for Sun Dried Mind?

“Very poppy, filtered through 60’s psychedelia” – American Pancake.

“Soaring pop tendencies and guitar fuzz” – Obscure Sound.

“Sun-soaked vocal harmonies and a clean-cut polished sound” – We All Want Someone. 

5. Which bands influenced The Tins?
The Kinks, Badfinger, Animal Collective, ELO, and Spoon. 

6. Why should I give Sun Dried Mind a crack? 

Sun Dried Mind has captured a hallelujah moment in song. It feels so good it's a religious experience.

7. Do The Tins have any more great songs?

Let It Go and Love On Strike. 

8. Anything else?

The Shins was produced by Robby Takac of the Goo Goo Dolls. 

Matthew Logan Vasquez is the singer/guitarist from indie rock band Delta Spirit. He is also in Middle Brother. As a solo artist he has released two albums. Matthew Logan Vasquez is influenced by artists like Gram Parsons, Iggy Pop and Nirvana. Night Forever is from the E.P. Texas Murder Ballads (May'18) and is a snappy rocker propelled along with an intense sense of urgency. 

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Interpol - The Rover

1. Who?

Interpol are a popular and influential post-punk/indie rock band from New York. They started in 1997 and The Rover (June'18) is the lead single from their sixth album Marauder(Aug'18). 

2. What?

The Rover is more of Interpol's same old schtick. Humorless, post-punk, with no big hooks or a standout chorus. The Rover is atmospheric but the melodies slowly bubble to the surface and entrance after a few repeated listens. A song with moreish qualities. 

3. Who do Interpol sound like? 

The National, Bloc Party, and The Strokes. 

4. What have the press said about The Rover?

“More perfunctory than visceral” – Spin. 

“Digs a pleasing groove in your brain” – Pitchfork. 

“A rush of dark rock’n’roll from returning masters” – NME.

5. Which bands influenced Interpol? 
The Violent Femmes, Neil Young, Pink Floyd, Leonard Cohen, and Janes Addiction. 

7. What are Interpol's biggest bangers? 

8. Anything else?
Marauder was produced by Dave Fridmann (Spoon, Weezer, The Cribs). 

Arcade Fire are a popular art rock/indie rock band from Montreal, Canada. Arcade Fire are similar to Bloc Party, Interpol and Vampire Weekend. Their influences are New Order, Talking Heads and David Bowie. Chemistry is an album track from Arcade Fire's fifth album Everything Now (July'17). SPIN magazine said Chemistry is “the worst Arcade Fire song ever” and The Guardian thought it “sounds almost willfully horrible.” Suffice to say Chemistry is a reggae song, a laugh, and the best Arcade Fire song in years.

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Lost Love - Clay Turris

1. Who?

Lost Love are a catchy punk rock band from Montreal, Canada. Clay Turris (May'18) is the lead single from their third album Good Luck Rassco (May'18). 

2. What kind of song is Clay Turris? 

Clay Turris is a mid-tempo indie rock song that chugs along on a lazy rakish riff, like early Weezer, and has an uplifting chorus. A rocker that steps lightly. 

3. Who do Lost Love sound like? 

Weezer, PUP, Jeff Rosenstock. 

4. What is the good word from the press? 

“This is the tits. It’s so catchy and awesome, and stuff” – Sound Sphere. 

“An immediate catchy and poppy tune” – Colorado Punk Rock Army. 

“Sophisticated production while remaining honest” – Spill Magazine. 

5. Which band influenced Lost Love? 
They might like The Flatliners, Red Radio City, Weezer, and Lawrence Arms. 

6. Why should I give Clay Turris a listen? 
Because you like pop-punk. Because you like Weezer before they became a pastiche of themselves. 

7. What other bangers do these lads have? 
There is more punk, less pop, in Take Care, Get Better, See You Never. 

8. Any last words? 


Skating Polly are an alternative rock band from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. They are all family members and started making music in 2009. Skating Polly have been compared to Babes In Toyland and Bikini Kill. Their influences are Veruca Salt, The Breeders and L7. Hollywood Factory (April'18) is the third single from their fifth album The Make It All Show (May'18) and marries sweet indie pop vocals with a louche grunge riff.

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Houndmouth - This Party

1.    Who? 

Houndmouth are an indie/folk rock band from New Albany, Indiana. This Party (May’18) is the lead single from their third album Golden Age (August’18).

2. What? 

This Party is quite a departure from Houndmouth's roots/rock sound, instead embracing a pop/rock song that rests on an electronic dance groove.

3. Who do Handmouth sound like?

Generally Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats or The Oh Hellos. Specifically Passion Pit or Gorillaz. 

4. What have they said about This Party in the press?  

“High energy and ultra-melodic” – Broadway World. 

“A synth-laden fusion of pop and rock” – Mxdwn. 
“Much stronger electronic influence” – Paste. 

5. Which bands have influenced Houndmouth? 
The Band, Jimi Hendrix, Van Morrison, and Green Day. 

6. Why should I listen to This Party?

Because you need a light rock moment with a couple of hooks and a sticky chorus. Because of the way Houndmouth take it down to a whisper in the breakdown before the all-in chorus.

7. What other bangers do Houndmouth have? 


8. Any last words?
This Party is produced by Jonathan Rado (Foxygen, Lemon Twigs) and Shawn Everett (Alabama Shakes, The War On Drugs).

The Oh Hellos are an indie folk rock band from San Marcos, Texas. The brother and sister band started making music together in 2011 and have recorded three albums and four E.P's. The Oh Hellos are influenced by Los Compesinos!, The Pogues, and Mumford & Sons. Torches (Nov'17) was the lead single for their third album Notos (Dec'17). Torches is a bombastic indie folk song that builds with strings and is given punch by the gang vocals.