New single: Scooter James || Way Too Heavy / Felt The Sun

Scooter James formed Pinhead Circus in 1992, a punk band that made noise for ten years. After a stopover in Love Me Destroyer, his next project Tin Horn Prayer found him in the element that fit him best as he became older and wiser (for example watch the video for Crime Scene Cleanup Team). This is where he reshaped his voice and his relationship with music, the road to now be a solo artist (we saw with Frank Turner that the road from punk band to solo folk artist can lead to success). Scooter James’ first single We Bend / Dear Friends was released a year ago and now there is a follow-up, of which A-side Way Too Heavy in particular is worth your time, not in the least because of that great snarly voice. Now digitally available through Snappy Little Numbers Quality Audio Recordings.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp (pay what you want download)

New album: Fuzzy Vox || Program & Control

Did you know the mysterious story of three young boys that enter an empty 80’s arcade room filled with flickering neons, in order to play an old arcade game called Program & Control? That’s what the third album by French power pop / garage rock band Fuzzy Vox is all about. Then you’ll understand why computer sounds have been added to the guitars and drums and how to interpret lyrics like “Suddenly I’ve found my treasure” (Charm) and “A drunk guy took my ankles somehow” (Mario Kart). Nice approach, and the music is also quite entertaining, not a bad soundtrack for a night out at the game hall.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New video: FuckFuckFuck || Bad Habits

Party punk bands that have been traveling along filthy concert stages for some time, think of FIDLAR or Black Lips, at a certain point become less wild. But there will always be long-haired rockers who will fill the need to pogo on songs about “Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll”. The Dutch band FuckFuckFuck takes that quite literally with their new single Bad Habits (Googling the combination of band name and song title is NSFW). As soon as the lockdown is over, it will probably go loose in all pubs as in the accompanying video. Enjoy your weekend!

Add to wantlist: Linktree

New album: Teddy’s Hit || Painters

I regularly miss Mozes and the Firstborn, the Dutch rock band that stopped (temporarily?) In 2019. Fortunately their music lives on, but I would have liked to hear a lot more from them. Today I discovered a great alternative: I listened to Painters, the debut full length by Teddy’s Hit (also from the Netherlands), and that reminded me at times of the work of Mozes and the Firstborn. For example, listen to Liquid Juice (check out the entertaining video below; an ode to the first time), and you’ll know what I mean. I could also name Parquet Courts, Vampire Weekend, or a combination of slacker rock and 90’s indie as influences, but these comparisons don’t really do the indie rockers justice. Their songs are very strong, melodic, energetic and catchy, performed with nonchalanche and humor. The LP is out now through I Love My Label. I can enjoy myself with this for a while.

Stream: Spotify. Add to wantlist: Discogs || Excelsior Recordings || I Love My Label

New single: Thee Sacred Souls || Will I See You Again? / It’s Our Love

Alex Garcia, Sal Samano and Josh Lane formed Thee Sacred Souls in 2019 but they are quickly becoming an established name with soul lovers. Their first 7 “, the wonderful Can I Call You Rose? / Weak For Your Love, sold already for € 164 on Discogs. And now the American soul trio has released a new single, of which both sides, Will I See You Again? and It’s Our Love, are just as wonderful. Out now on Daptone’s imprint Penrose Records. A band and a voice to cherish.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Discogs

New EP: The Shang Hi Los || “Kick It Like A Wicked Bad Habit”

Boston based rock n roll band The Shang Hi Los plays music that could be from one of the many great compilations with 60’s nuggets, only sounding better. It’s all there in their catchy 3-minute sing-along songs: a combination of two good voices, doo-wop harmonies, cheerful guitar riffs and a boosting drumbeat. The only cover – Chicago’s Saturday In The Park – is the weakest track on this EP, that says enough. “Kick It Like A Wicked Bad Habit” is out now digitally and on CD through Rum Bar Records.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New single: Reynaldo Jenkins and the Teardrops || Oleka

Not much more is known about Reynaldo Jenkins and the Teardrops than that they are from Wisconsin (USA) and their music is a mix of doo-wop, garage and punk. But a look at their discography is telling; you will see song titles as Bad Habits, Please for Fucksake, Ten Cent Brain, I Want to Blow Shit Up, I Like a Ketchup, Fuck I OD’d Again and Fuck the Snow (that last one is a Christmas song). You know what to expect, right? In that respect the new (digital) single Oleka is a surprise, because the first song starts with the question ‘Do you love me?’ with a friendly drumbeat in the background. But then you hear a raw throat shouting the answer ‘Can’t you see it in my eyes?’ and screeching guitars coming along, so that the sweet lyrics don’t matter that much anymore. This is all about emotion!

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New single: Don’t Worry || As If By Magic

Indie rock band Don’t Worry from Essex (UK) released the new digital single As If By Magic, out now through Specialist Subject Records. Reportedly it’s “about feeling dissatisfied in the present moment and how we often try to remedy this by looking backwards. Social media can often exacerbate these feelings. The song is a reminder not to swim too long in the warmth of nostalgia and to recognize the value in all experiences.” In terms of music and vocals, this song is much lighter than their previous album Who Cares Anyway? (2018), it could be a radio hit. Do I hear handclaps there?

‘Dive into the rat race // Chop of the top of my head // Find whatever meaning in that which presents itself // I’ll find the time to look inside’

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp 

New album: Oberon Rose || Holographic Blues

Tommy Oberon and Rebecca Rose form a songwriting team, and with surnames like that you don’t have to think long about a band name. Oberon Rose pulls from a variety of rock, folk, country and pop influences that span both genres and decades (we should also mention power pop, glam rock and psych here, yet they produce their own unambiguous sound). After Wunjo (2012) and Tell Me All About It (2018) they have now released their third CD: Holographic Blues is out now through their own label ThouART Records. Mesmerizing music that makes you dream of better times. Watch and listen below to Sinner (the first and imho one of the best tracks on the album) and stream the other tracks on Spotify.

Add to wantlist:

New album: The Airport 77s || Rotation

Although they occasionally dress as such, the Airport 77s are not airline pilots, but they play their guitars and drums with enough energy to take flight. Bassist Chuck Dolan, drummer John Kelly, and guitarist Andy Sullivan came together over a shared love of obscure 1970s power pop, so not surprising that they cover Bram Tchaikovsky’s Girl Of My Dreams on their self-produced debut album Rotation. The other seven tracks are own work, a selection from the slowly but surely built up repertoire of more than 100 songs, just as good (according to the band bio, the premise was that “the original material had to be good enough to follow Jessie’s Girl in the set”). The music is power pop like power pop is meant to be, but the lyrics really bring a smile to your face – just listen to (When You’re Kissing On Me Do You Think Of) James McAvoy, an ode to the Scottish actor: (“If Coldplay was his jam / Would you say they’re your favorite band? / It’s like you don’t give a damn about human dignity.”)

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Discogs

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