Garage Rock

New album: The Mary Veils || Slacker Paint

For obvious reasons, far fewer new albums are released in December than in other months, but luckily there is still some notable new work. Most interesting this week imho is Slacker Paint, the debut LP of The Mary Veils. It turns out to be not really a new album, because the American garage rock band self-released it back in 2017. Apparently most music lovers missed that at the time, the album was not even on Discogs yet, but PNKSLM Recordings now shares it with a wider audience. The second full-length album is due for release next year, but let’s dive into this first; there is much to discover in these varied tracks.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New EP: Messer Chups || New Wave or Surf Wave

There are a number of iconic bands that almost everyone seems to be a fan of. Kraftwerk for example. I probably shouldn’t say it, but I don’t feel it. However, if you replace the electronics with guitars, you can hear how strong their work is, but in a style that appeals to me more. That’s exactly what the Russian surf trio Messer Chups did with Kraftwerk’s classic Das Model on their new digital album New Wave or Surf Wave. On this EP you can also hear covers of, among others, Enjoy The Silence (Depeche Mode) and Love Will Tear Us Apart (Joy Division).

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New song: Justin Angelo Morey || (Tell Me) What’s Your Name

Lead singer, songwriter en multi-instrumentalist Justin Angelo Morey taught himself how to play the guitar, bass, and drums by the age of 12. After a career in a few bands (The Black Hollies, Sunshine & the Rain) and establishing his own chocolate line (J. A. Morey Artisan Chocolates) he is now trying to make it as a solo artist. After digital single I Want Your Love / Waving Hello there last October this is a new fine track from his hand, (Tell Me) What’s Your Name, one that you immediately sing along. Out now through Silent Stereo Records. Why don’t they play such songs on the radio?

‘Anna took your order // You wanted chicken parm // And in that moment // I thought you could be the one’

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: The New Madness || After Hours

Now this is a good way to start the weekend. The New Madness delivers energetic garage / blues rock with punchy riffs, a high-pitched voice and lots of whoohoos. It kind of reminds me of the Cato Salsa Experience, although it has been some time since they were active, but you probably also hear influences like The Black Keys. The debut single Love Sick, my favorite track from the album, was released three and a half years ago and is now bundled with the songs that followed along the way. Berlin-based / Danish-born Bjarke Sørensen wrote the music and lyrics and he’s also responsible for vocals, guitars, synth moog, rhodes, drums, and percussion (yes, there are also some other artists playing along). The LP After Hours is out today through Crunchy Frog.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New Album: The Chives || The Chives

The Chives are pretty loud for a lo-fi band. They act pretty tough as well. They call your mom a bitch, they buy guns, do drugs and steal your candy. You’d almost miss the sweet and catchy bubblegum pop that’s underneath their loud and fuzzy guitars.


Add to Wantlist: Bandcamp || Super Wimpy Punch

New single: Heavy Lag || Demo

New band alert! Brooklyn based Heavy Lag say they play dirt pop, which is an apt description of their fuzzy and punky take on powerpop. The A-side has the second best use of an intro sample of the year (#1 here). It is short, and so catchy I played it thrice before moving to the B-side. That offers another killer track, reminiscent of Marked Men. Curious to hear what these guys will cook up next.


Add to Wantlist: Bandcamp

New song: Romero || Troublemaker

Early this year, Romero released a two song single which is still one of my highlights of 2020. Today, they released their latest recording, a self-described “golden old soul that smoothes out the bumps of at-home frustrations and reassures you on the existential path ahead.” Slightly lower paced, but with the same swagger of their previous work, it is another showcase of the sheer vocal power of singer Alanna Oliver.

Add to Wantlist: Bandcamp || Discogs

Book: Seth Bovey || Five Years Ahead of My Time: Garage Rock from the 1950s to the Present

Looking back to the past to forge the future. That’s what Seth Bovey was aiming for with his history book about garage rock. The author is a professor of English at a university, but 40 years ago he also played in several garage bands. The scientist’s hand is clearer than the musician’s experience in the book; above all, it provides a thorough and detailed overview (no lack of references), roughly arranged chronologically and by location. Although many bands are mentioned in the six chapters, it is useful that the book ends with a list for recommended listening – many “garage punk unknowns”, but of course a classic like Psychotic Reaction by Count Five is not missing, see below – and recommended compilations and compilation series. Oh man, my wantlist has expanded a lot when I was reading this – you’ve been warned.

Want to hear more? I’ve collected songs mentioned in the book in this Spotify playlist.

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