Shortwave Party is like The Strokes, if The Strokes weren’t boring. A more apt comparison would be to The Smiths or The Walkmen; bands which have a palpably energetic sound to their sometimes heart breaking tunes.
Shortwave Party’s charming songs are grounded by frontman drummer Dolores J. Diaz’s forward driving dance beats. Meanwhile, guitarists Justin Finney and Brady Porche (what a name) jump back and forth from jittery indie riffs to an almost ‘wall of sound’ style, giving each song a fantastic depth. In addition, Michael Kuntzman’s clever bass lilts in and out of the song’s spotlight with a laid back but nevertheless wholly present tone. On top of this already smooth pie of sound, vocalist Shelby DuPerier (okay, now I know they’re making these names up) belts her heart out. Her voice conveys the grief felt by the overly self-conscious (once again, Morrissey and Leithausercome to mind), but doesn’t come off as pretentious sounding as this sentence. -Taylor Browne
Residual Kid has released a video along with their fantasticly sludgy new single "Friend". While I'm always a bit skeptical of the actual punkness of skateboarding, the video is an absolute treat to watch; especially near the end when the kids pull a Pete Townsend on their instruments. "Friend" itself is somewhat tongue in cheek, with lyrics like "If they open their chests, and let out the flies, they wouldn't be so quick to judge". Coupled with a la di da chorus and poppy but clever chords, "Friend" is not a song to pass up.
The trio has a show next week on the 18th at Stubb's and they'll also be at Fun Fun Fun fest this November.
Brains is the first track on Crooked Bangs’ Bandcamp, and is one of only two songs which can be played. The rest of the album remains a mystery. To find the rest of Crooked Bangs’ material I had to equip my Indiana Jones whip and hat and enter the jungle of low quality YouTube. But the choice of their flagship track could not have been better.
Brains’ head banging energy never falters. Guitarist Samantha’s (last name unknown; the mystery thickens) tone is fantastic. It smeaks, in a good way, of Sleater Kinney guitarist Carrie Brownstein, as she plays with the song’s deceptively straightforward, not to mention sexy, 1960s beat by hitting delicious off rhythms. Simultaneously, Leda Ginestra’s vocals sound like Corin Tucker beat up Danzig and then made out with Brian Ferry. Her voice effortlessly moves from a growl to chill inducing. - Taylor Browne
Staking their claim as a top contender among bands with names that are nearly a complete sentence, "Letting Up Despite Great Faults" have a number of quality songs to support such a noble sounding name - our favorite from their latest release are the dramatic "Stand Still" and the more minimalistic “Folding Under Stories Told” . The Los Angeles/Austin based electro-dream-pop band is about to release a new album entitled "Untogether" (scheduled for early October) and recently unveiled the first single "Visions" (streaming below), which nods the 80's era Cure of "In Between Days" by way of pace, chord progression and strumming, and through bass textures reminiscent of New Order's Peter Hook. Sugary sandpaper vocals share space alongside additional late-80's pop purveyors Echo & The Bunnymen, with a bit of modern-era "twee" (and fellow half-a-sentence named) Pains Of Being Pure At Heart style vocals on the bridge. - Dave Cromwell
Bands often reflect their environment. So far, Austin has been defined very heavily by its Psychedelic garage rock scene, but this has never completely captured the Texan Capitol. Austin’s old college-town feel still lingers here, despite the immensely huge and annoying immigration of people from L.A., NYC, and, well, everywhere (except Baltimore. Those guys are staying put it seems. What’s Baltimore doing right I wonder?), and no band seems to be filling that void.
Mirror Travel (formerly Follow That Bird) is coming straight out of that old Austin ethos. The music is simultaneously relaxing and powerful, giving us an intelligent spin on indie rock. Lauren Green’s ethereal vocal melodies are matched perfectly with the solid rhythm section. Mirror Travel seems to always know where a song should go. So, if you want to know what Austin sounds like, don’t move here, just listen to Mirror Travel. Seriously, don’t move here. There are cancer bats. - Taylor Browne
Led by front man and blind rebel TJ Wade, Foot Patrol’s sexy and very healthy obsession with your feet is a breath of fresh air (not that The Foot Patrol would like that; they prefer your digits being a bit gnarly in terms of smell). The Foot Patrol’s album Pussyfooting is up-tempo, insanely solid in terms of rhythm, and the melodies are simply fantastic. On top of this, their live acts will knock you off your feet (there are so many opportunities for puns here). On stage, The Foot Patrol’s costume choices look like Roxy Music got bitch slapped by the goblins from “Labyrinth.” Everything about this band is perfect. With just one listen to The Foot Patrol you’ll break down and need a tow truck (concluding pun courtesy of Don Denham). – Taylor Browne
Holy Wave is grounded well within the Austin psychedelic scene, but they take many interesting side steps into other trains of thought. A crutch of some psychedelic rock bands is to fall into a strung out and trudging groove that would be cool if you were stoned. Holy Wave never falls into this defect of their genre. Mixed in with cool surf licks, the band has incorporated a crescendo style into their act. Any time the boys seem to be cruising along in one groove, it isn’t long before one of the members shoots the rest of the band into a jaw-dropping climax. Holy Wave’s intelligent take on psychedelic surf rock is engaging and will make you feel like you’re at a 1950’s beach party.- Taylor Browne
Like ever year, The Deli is going to give you the opportunity to play at one of its CMJ Music Marathon parties.
This time we have booked a bunch of shows in the Lower East Side and Brooklyn, and as usual we'll have stages for all major musical genres (see last year's schedule here). See flyer above for the list of venues booked this year.
We are looking to book 5 or more artists for these shows - last year we ended up booking more than 10 from the submissions!!!
To be considered, all you need to do is to apply here - good luck!
As if in an attempt to mirror the eclectic and ever changing Austin music scene, The Baker Family is hard to pin down in any single genre. At the offset you’d think they’re a Liars influenced dance punk band, but on their recordings the band jumps genre from track to track. Haunting folk music with intelligent electronic touches gives way to visceral bass and keg drum beating tracks. They’re hard to put in a category, which is one of the many reasons The Baker Family is one of the greatest additions to Austin. The band is wonderfully misleading even in their lyrics. A song which at one moment might be heartwarming will turn horrifying at the drop of a hat.
We haven’t even begun to touch on their live performances which are, frankly, incandescent. Their dance punk style is executed perfectly. Each member is a pure joy to watch perform. Too often indie bands don’t convey any sense of energy or, when they try to convey it, they do so by jumping around. But by this very action they seem to force the energy and come across as insincere. The Baker Family may be the epitome of the untrustworthy narrator, but you will get nothing but an honest and enthralling experience from seeing them live. - Taylor Browne