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Friday, May 25, 2018

Amusement Parks On Fire: All The New Ends

All The New Ends is the latest EP by Amusement Parks On Fire, released on Saint Marie Records. The three tracks are smart indie rock, with lush harmonies and strong songwriting. The instrumental work is flawless and creates an immense sonic space. Fusing elements of shoegaze, psychedelia and dreampop, the band delivers an EP that is dense, ethereal and stunning. High on originality and deep with aural complexity, this EP is a must have. Stream and buy All The New Ends at the link below.

Deerest: Deep River Series

Deep River Series is the new EP from Deerest, aka Linnea Talp, on Lazy Octopus Records. The five tracks are dark, powerful post-punk tinged pop. With influences from Chelsea Wolfe and Stina Nordenstam, Talp's huge vocals tower above a deeply moving instrumental base, with stark dynamic changes and an intensity that is totally compelling. With songs that are heavy, yet retain a pop feel, the EP has strong originality and is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Deep River Series at the link below.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

John Flanagan Trio: Honest Man

Honest Man is the new album from Australian band John Flanagan Trio. The twelve tracks are superlative Americana folk. With guitar, double bass, mandolin and his playmates, Flanagan delivers what will surely be one of the best albums of 2018. With a voice that sounds strikingly like James Taylor, Flanagan serves up such stunning songs that it seems trite to even try to write about them. This is an album that sets the bar as high as Everest and then climbs right past the peak into outer space. This album is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Honest Man at the link below.

The Search: A Wave From The Sidelines

Swedish new wave band The Search are back with a new album, A Wave from The Sidelines. The twelve tracks are pure 80's homage, cut straight from the cloth of New Order, Depeche Mode and OMD. The songs are radio ready, the synths are clever, the beats danceable and the vocals silky smooth, Everything one would expect from the 80's bands mentioned above and that is part of the problem. For all the strength this album shows, and it shows plenty, it is also completely derivative. Rather than taking influence from the era and finding its own sound, this is an album of pure regurgitation, copying rather than channelling the new wave influences. Stream and buy A Wave From The Sidelines at the link below.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The Common Cold: Shut UP! You Liberals!

Shut UP! You Liberals! is the debut album from UK band The Common Cold on Action Records with distribution from FZB fave label Dirty Water Records. The nine tracks have a solid punk edge, new wave smoothness and enough swagger to make Sinatra hide in the corner. This is an album that recalls the provocative days of bands like The Fall, Joy Division and Gang of Four. The album is dark and dense, with some inspired guitar playing and a sound that would fill an airplane hanger. This is one of the best debut records we've heard and it is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Shut Up! Yo Liberals! at the link below.

Lonesome Hot Dudes: Obey

Obey is the new 7" release from Lonesome Hot Dudes on Vienna's Cut Surface Records. The two tracks are edgy punk, that takes a bit of an experimental approach. The tracks have non-standard changes and phrasing, elevating the EP to more of an avant garde exploration, than a traditional punk or riot grrrl release. This is a band of vision and creativity, strapping themselves in and launching full speed into the music. Not for the weak or timid and an absolute must have. Stream and buy Obey at the link below.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Midge: Still Receiver

Toronto based Midge, aka the duo of Olivia Fetherstonhaugh and Shane Turner have released their debut EP Still Receiver on Utah indie UR AudioVisual. The five tracks are enticing dream pop/indie rock in the vein of artists like Tennis, where the guitar drives the arrangements, which are positioned around the lead vocal. With so much of the genre being a bit pablum, it is nice to hear this EP going an edgier direction. Interesting arrangements and a changing palette of dynamics are the highlight, where commercialism is sacrificed for a stronger rock persona. This is a great debut and showcases a duo on the verge. Get in at the beginning, stream and buy Still Receiver at the link below.

Broads: Climbs+1

Climbs+1 is the new EP from FZB Favorite Broads. Coming only a couple of months after their acclaimed album Field Theory, these two tracks are a further testament to a band that has become a world class exponent of synthpop. With stunning arrangements, musical mastery and some of the best songcraft this side of the classics, this is a band at the height of its powers and making important music. Stream and buy Climbs+1 ast the link below.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Long Branch: Lucky Me/Just In case

Lucky Me/Just in Case is the debut EP from Toronto's Long Branch. The three tracks are fresh takes on classic rock-n-roll sounds. Stylishly raw, melodically edgy and as smooth as a folk song, the band craft a sound driven by stunning harmonies and masteful phrasing. This is an EP that's good for all the right reasons, just tons of chops and is an absolute must have. Stream and buy LuckyMe/Just In case at the link below.

Something Within: Something Within

Ohio based Something Within have released their S/T debut album. The eleven tracks are pure formula hard rock. The guitars are grinding, the drums driving, the bass heavy and vocals right out of an old Scorpions album. This kind of rock has become so cliched and lacking of invention and originality that it is almost a caricature of itself. This album is no different, totally derivative and everything that's been heard before ad infinitum. Stream and buy Something Within at the link below.