The Lees Of Memory – “We Are Siamese”

If you’re like me, you miss Superdrag. Well, yearn no more, because former Superdrag members John Davis and Brandon Fisher have returned (along with drummer Nick Slack) to form The Lees of Memory. While their certainly not a full revival of the Superdrag sound, The Lees of Memory offer a new shoegaze-heavy version of John Davis’ wonderful songwriting.

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Ghastly City Sleep – “White Owls”

A new Ghastly City Sleep album is finally on the way. It’s been a while, but with the arrival of new single “White Owls,” comes the promise of Lulling Skulls this October on Magic Bullet Records. A little light seems to have cracked through the dark cave of which Ghastly City Sleep has mainly hidden beneath.

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Generationals – “Gold Silver Diamond”

Generationals have a new record, Alix, due out September 16th on Polyvinyl. “Gold Silver Diamond” is the first single from the record.

GENERATIONALS – 2014 TOUR DATES
OCTOBER 07 – Houston, TX – Fitzgerald’s Downstairs *
OCTOBER 08 – Dallas, TX – Prophet *
OCTOBER 09 – Baton Rouge, LA – Spanish Moon *
OCTOBER 10 – Atlanta, GA – Drunken Unicorn *
OCTOBER 11 – Washington, DC – U Street Music Hall *
OCTOBER 12 – Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg *
OCTOBER 15 – Birmingham, AL – The Bottletree *
OCTOBER 16 – Hattiesburg, MS – Thirsty Hippo *
OCTOBER 17 – New Orleans, LA – One Eyed Jacks *
OCTOBER 28 – Kansas City, MO – Record Bar
OCTOBER 29 – Bloomington, IN – The Bishop
OCTOBER 30 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall
NOVEMBER 02 – Minneapolis, MN – 7th Street Entry
NOVEMBER 12 – Los Angeles, CA – Troubadour &
NOVEMBER 13 – San Francisco, CA – The Chapel &
NOVEMBER 15 – Seattle, WA – Crocodile &
NOVEMBER 16 – Portland, OR – Doug Fir Lounge (early show/all ages) &
NOVEMBER 16 – Portland, OR – Doug Fir Lounge (late show) &
NOVEMBER 17 – Vancouver, BC – Biltmore Cabaret &
* = Arum Rae supporting
& = Springtime Carnivore supporting

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Afghan Whigs – “Matamoros”

I guess it’s only natural that the reunited Afghan Whigs had been as overlooked as the 90s Afghan Whigs. Among all of the reunions that have happened over the past few years, this one seemed to get very little hype, but produced a record worth of the legend of the band. And maybe that was the problem. Where many reunions have led to huge letdowns, Do To The Beast is a logical continuation from where the band left off with 1998′s 1965. And “Matamoros” is one of the best examples of Greg Dulli and co’s continued brilliance.

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Roots-Cousin

Featured Album: The Roots – …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin

Roots-Cousin

The Roots
…And Then You Shoot Your Cousin

Label: Def Jam
Released: 2014

1. Theme from the Middle of the Night (performed by Nina Simone)
2. Never (featuring Patty Crash)
3. When the People Cheer” (featuring Greg Porn)
4. The Devil (performed by Mary Lou Williams)
5. Black Rock (featuring Dice Raw)
6. Understand (featuring Dice Raw & Greg Porn)
7. Dies Irae (performed by Michel Chion)
8. The Coming (featuring Mercedes Martinez)
9. The Dark (Trinity) (featuring Dice Raw & Greg Porn)
10. The Unraveling (featuring Raheem DeVaughn)
11. Tomorrow (featuring Raheem DeVaughn)

He sat back and reflected upon a life caught in the endless cycle of hustling to survive the day to day grind.

There are tracks on Undun that pretty much foretold what would come on their eleventh studio album, but nothing The Roots have done has ever been quite as stark and nuanced as …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin. Never one to be pinned down, this is likely The Roots most unique stylist shift since Phrenology, and also arguably their most rewarding. Previous records like Undun and How I Got Over mainly showcased The Roots in their comfort zone mixing soul, hip hop and jazz with intellectually gripping storytelling. They’re virtually perfect records, but weren’t pushing boundaries quite as much as their greatest records. Like any stylistic shift, …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin will be polarizing among fans. If you arrive to it hoping for more of the same, you could be disappointed.

A lot of the songs are built on bleak piano melodies that wouldn’t be out of place on a Tori Amos record. They set a very dark, reflective tone for their self-described satirical look at violence in hip hop and American society overall. “The Dark (Trinity)” and “When The People Cheer” are not just album highlights but two of the best tracks The Roots have ever released.

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ema-1396620985

Featured Album: EMA – The Future’s Void

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EMA
The Future’s Void

Label: Matador
Released: 2014

01. Satellites
02. So Blonde
03. 3Jane
04. Cthulu
05. Smoulder
06. Neuromancer
07. When She Comes
08. 100 Years
09. Solace
10. Dead Celebrity

Frayed wires send electrical charges through her spine.

“So Blonde” is a throwback to the great 90s female singers that combined sweet with a rough around the edges attitude that basically said “I’ve got a crush on this boy, but he better not think he can fuck me over.” And that’s pretty much the spirit of EMA’s latest release, The Future’s Void. For all the pop hooks, there’s plenty of raw nerves that give each and every track a sense of human vitality. it’s the kind of record that should please Yeah yeah Yeahs fans who think the band lost their edge over the years. Taking cues from the industrial music playbook, there’s a machine-like aesthetic to The Future’s Void, but EMA maintains enough human emotion to avoid falling into the realm of soulless robotic terror. Album highlight “Smoulder” utilizes vocal distortion and feedback effects to intensify the aching ballad into something special.

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Julia Holter – “Don’t Make Me Over”

Originally written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, and performed by Dionne Warwick, Julia Holter’s cover of “Don’t Make Me Over” is a colossal beauty!

A new double A side 7″ from Julia Holter set for release on August 19 (North America) / July 28th 2014 (Rest of the world).

A Don’t Make Me Over (Written by Burt Bacharach / Hal David; originally performed by Dionne Warwick) LISTEN: bit.ly/dontmakemeoversc
AA Hello Stranger (Barbara Lewis) LISTEN: bit.ly/hellostrangersc

Pre-order and receive an instant download of both tracks
7″: smarturl.it/dontmakemeover7in
iTunes: smarturl.it/dontmakemeover7mp3

juliashammasholter.com/
www.facebook.com/pages/Julia-Holt…/153196178042232
twitter.com/JULIA_HOLTER

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the-antlers-cover-familiars

Featured Album: The Antlers – Familiars

the-antlers-cover-familiars

The Antlers
Familiars

Label: ANTI-
Released: 2014

1. Palace
2. Doppelgänger
3. Hotel
4. Intruders
5. Director
6. Revisited
7. Parade
8. Surrender
9. Refuge

In the clouds he freely floated above all that which once brought immense pain.

The further down the Talk Talk-influenced rabbit hole that The Antlers fall, the less exciting they’ll become to much of their original audience that stepped aboard when Hospice blew up. Burst Apart was clearly the transitional effort leading to Familiars. it’s hard not to miss the energy and vulnerability of their earlier releases, but The Antlers make up for it with the development of their musical sensibilities. Familiars is gorgeous, spacious, and filled with an atmosphere not dissimilar to Talk Talk’s final two albums. The mood remains peacefully adrift in the clouds with tensions hardly rising beyond a whispered cry. This lack of tension keeps Familiars from reaching Spirit of Eden‘s heights, but it’s a beautiful album regardless, and one that should age gracefully.

RIYL: Talk Talk, Slowdive

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81-A10Ury3L._SL1500_

Featured Album: Warpaint – Warpaint

81-A10Ury3L._SL1500_

Warpaint
Warpaint

Label: Rough Trade
Released: 2014

1. Intro
2. Keep It Healthy
3. Love Is to Die
4. Hi
5. Biggy
6. Teese
7. Disco//very
8. Go In
9. Feeling Alright
10. CC
11. Drive
12. Son

Through the thick fog, a colorful display of lights seductively shined through, luring the convoy astray.

Released way back in January, Warpaint’s sophomore effort is already a distant memory in the age of the internet which cuts away at the shelf life of anything in its path. When people were raving about Warpaint’s debut The Fool, I felt like one of the few who didn’t find love at first listen. Naturally, Warpaint has been far more appealing to me and yet hasn’t gotten nearly as much love from the press. The band seems to be at their best when combining ethereal vocal with poppy rhythms. I cannot help but think of a certain classic female-fronted 4AD band covering the Slits most groove oriented material (or ESG for that matter). Like a hazy fog of color, the songs somewhat blend into each other, which keeps it flowing seamlessly, but may also take away from the ability of individual tracks to stand out.

Favorite songs: Love Is To Die, Disco//very, Son

RIYL: ESG, Cocteau Twins, Mazzy Star

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Walking Bicycles – “Eyesore”

From the city of Chicago, Walking Bicycles have returned with a claustrophobic beast of an album. Their latest single “Eyesore” a fast paced buzz saw cutting through a dense wall of sound.

To Him That Wills The Way Tracklisting:
1. Impending Doom
2. So
3. Eyesore
4. Vitamin Z
5. War Paint
6. Faster Than Light
7. Words
8. The Messenger
9. Boethius
10. Badada

Upcoming Tour Dates
6/20 – Chicago, IL – The Hideout Inn
8/11 – Chicago, IL – The Empty Bottle (Album Release Show)

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Unicycle-Dead-Age-digital-1000x1000

Featured Album: Unicycle Loves You – The Dead Age

Unicycle-Dead-Age-digital-1000x1000

Unicycle Loves You
The Dead Age

Label: Mecca Lecca
Released: 2014

01. Falling Off
02. We Never Worry
03. Suicide Pizza
04. Silent Minus
05. Face Tattoo
06. JAWS
07. Bad News Club
08. Endless Bummer
09. Any Daydreaming Morning
10. Grownups
11. X-ray Glaze
12. The Dead Age

Everyone was having a great time until the chainsaw wielding maniac arrived at the school dance.

In 2008, Unicycle Loves You launched into the indie rock stratosphere with their self-titled debut. It was a slick indie pop album that always made me think of a cross between The Cars and New Pornographers. Since then, Jim Carroll has distanced himself from the record, but it’s undeniable that that album was loaded with great melodies and pop hooks, plus “Highway Robbery” could have been a hit single. Two years later, the much more atmospheric and cohesive Mirror, Mirror displayed an immense level of growth for the band. It was a synth pop rock record with colorful washes of sound. They still sounded like the same band, but with a more unique personality than their debut.

Leading up to 2012′s Failure, Unicycle Loves You joined the humble beginnings of Mecca Lecca‘s music collective. Demos revealed a much more raw, heavy sound coming from the now trio. What once was characterized by a shiny polish had rusted over into something far more dangerous. Carroll’s lyric had grown more clever and cynical and yet their grasp on the wonder of melody was as tight as ever.

If you played someone each album, they might have been able to distinguish that Unicycle Loves You and Mirror, Mirror were by the same band, but the sonic transformation on Failure would have been much harder to link to its predecessor.

Finally, here we are in 2014. Jim Carroll and Nicole Vitale have moved from Chicago to Brooklyn, and were joined by a new drummer Dennis Lehrer. One might predict that such changes may have led to another major shift in change on their new album The Dead Age. Instead, The Dead Age takes everything that worked on Failure and thrives to perfect it. Jim Carroll’s guitar buzzes, explodes and bends through space and time as though he were trained by guitar Yodas Thurston Moore and J Mascis. This is the first Unicycle Loves You record that really feels like a guitar record, and it’s quite a good one. And despite similarities to Failure, standout tracks such as the riffcentric “JAWS,” hazy shoegazing “Any Daydreaming Morning” and epic finale “The Dead Age” prove that this is an entirely new and well-rounded feat for a band unwilling to settle on repeating the same stale ideas.

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Bear In Heaven – “Time Between”

Time Between is the first song to be released from the forthcoming Bear In Heaven record Time Is Over One Day Old.
Released on August 5th (4th in the UK) on Dead Oceans / Hometapes.

Pre-order the album at: bit.ly/BIHmerch

On tour (buy tickets at: bit.ly/BIHshows)
Mon. Aug. 4 – Brooklyn, NY @ Rough Trade (record release show)
Wed. Aug. 20 – Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda’s
Thu. Aug. 21 – Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair
Fri. Aug. 22 – Washington, DC @ Rock and Roll Hotel
Sat. Aug. 23 – Carrboro, NC @ Cat’s Cradle (Back Room)
Sun. Aug. 24 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West
Tue. Aug. 26 – Baton Rouge, LA @ Spanish Moon
Wed. Aug. 27 – Houston, TX @ House of Blues (Bronze Peacock)
Thu. Aug. 28 – Austin, TX @ The Parish
Tue. Sept. 2 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Echoplex
Wed. Sept. 3 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent
Fri. Sept. 5 – Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
Sat. Sept. 6 – Spokane, WA @ Bartfest
Sun. Sept. 7 – Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey
Wed. Sept. 10 – Minneapolis, MN @ 7th St. Entry
Thu. Sept. 11 – Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall
Fri. Sept. 12 – Columbus, OH @ A&R Music Bar
Sat. Sept. 13 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern
Sun. Sept. 14 – Montreal, QC @ La Sala Rossa
Tue. Sept. 16 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
Wed. Sept. 17 – Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
Thu. Oct. 2 – London, UK @ XOYO
Fri. Oct. 3 – Brussels, BE @ Beursschouwburg
Sat. Oct. 4 – Paris, FR @ Espace B
Sun. Oct. 5 – Amsterdam, NL @ Bitterzoet
Mon. Oct. 6 – Cologne, DE @ Club 672
Tue. Oct. 7 – Berlin, DE @ Berghain
Thu. Oct. 9 – Copenhagen, DK @ Ideal Bar
Fri. Oct. 10 – Lund, SE @ Mejeriet
Sat. Oct. 11 – Stockholm, SE @ Kagelbanan
Sun. Oct. 12 – Goteborg, SE @ Pustervik
Mon. Oct. 13 – Oslo, NO @ John Dee
Tue. Oct. 14 – Bergen, NO @ Landmark
Thu. Oct. 16 – Aarhus, DK @ Atlas
Fri. Oct. 17 – Hamburg, DE @ Aalhaus

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