New album: Confio En Tus Amigos || Rapida Comida

Next up in the category “I don’t understand their lyrics, but I do like their songs,” we have Confio En Tus Amigos. The band from Chile just released their second album Rapida Comida, which, if I’m not mistaken, translates to Fast Food. It’s a well chosen title for a record that offers 11 bites you can gobble up in 16 minutes. And unlike the cover suggests, the menu is more varied than you’d expect. Confio En Tus  Amigos have no issue bouncing around garage, psych, punk and even Latin influences. I don’t know about you, but I am having seconds!

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Mike Edison & Guadalupe Plata || Devil Can’t Do You No Harm

I’ve been looking for an affordable version of their awesome 2008 debut EP for years – it’s about time for another repress, please! – but luckily Guadalupe Plata releases new records with some regularity. On the new LP The Devil Can’t Do You No Harm, the Spanish psychedelic blues rockers work together with the renowned American writer / musician Mike Edison (vocals). The songs are slightly less raw and possessed than what we are used to from the band, but the gospel, rhythm and folk inspired blues is still just as mesmerizing. There are traditional songs that date back to before the American Civil War (notably the religious song-turned-protest Oh Mary Don’t You Weep is great), the reinterpretation of Bob Dylan’s Make You Feel My Love is almost unrecognizable, and the original compositions include the plea for forgiveness of Who Ya Gonna Call, a hit on my playlist (watch / listen below). The album is out now digitally, on CD and vinyl LP through Everlasting Records.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Discogs

New album: Layten Kramer || Dear Apathy

“Constant rearrangements // All this strange displacement // It’s so hard these days // To understand” – the lyrics and sound of Layten Kramer’s Strange Displacement are a fitting soundtrack to the strange times we live in. It’s one of the standout tracks from his new full-length album Dear Apathy, out now via Oscar St. Records. The Canadian singer / songwriter / multi-instrumentalist makes music that can be described as psychedelic western indie pop, dreamy and atmospheric. Let yourself drift away to these melodies. RIYL: Mac DeMarco, Jon McKiel, Cut Worms, Sam Cohen.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Winds || Look At The Sky

This psychedelic pop / rock band from Los Angeles, California is a great discovery. After listening to Winds‘ debut album Look At The Sky once, I immediately became a fan. At the same time I realized that it’s a record that can only continue to grow, if only because there is too much to hear to fully comprehend at once. Band members have gained experience in Lucille Furs (their album Another Land was at no. 15 in my AOTY 2019 list) and Triptides, then you know what to expect. Check out the video below for The Way You Feel to get a better idea of that, although the track Chocolat, with French lyrics (performed by Nina Antonucci), is completely different. The album is out now digitally and on vinyl LP through Natural Music.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Silver Synthetic || Silver Synthetic

Expectations were high after the Out of the Darkness EP that was released last fall, but with their self-titled full-length debut album American garage-psych quartet Silver Synthetic effortlessly deliver on its promise. We already knew two of the eight songs on the LP from that EP, but the new songs are from the same barrel, with a 70s stamp on it: relaxed glam rock, wayward country licks, classic pop harmonies, driving psych, Britfolk twists and turns, and dueling guitars. A great combination, where everything is right and sounds good. Out now via Third Man Records, on vinyl, CD, cassette, and digitally.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Discogs || Third Man

Reissue: The Blast Off Girls || The Blast Off Girls EP (w/ interview)

Every now and then, you come across a release that instantly intrigues but is clouded in mystery. Case in point: The Blast Off Girls EP. Perth label Igloo Records released it earlier this month, but it sounds like it’s from a different era. Songs like You’ve Been Messin’, Je M’apelle Femme Fatale, and Wrong Side Of The Tracks would fit right in on those sixties garage/girl group compilations we all love.

The Blast Off Girls look like they are from that era as well, with band members in ’60s dresses, gogo boots and armed with ray guns. It’s a lot of fun, and I was surprised how little I could find about the release. Fortunately, I came across the FB page of one of the Blast Off Girls, Hayley Comet. I reached out, and she was kind enough to uncover some of the mystery surrounding The Blast Off Girls. Read below to find out more about this short-lived project.

New album: Trey Batts || About Time

A lost and found funk treasure from the nineteen-seventies? That’s what I thought when I came across About Time by Trey Batts. It turns out to be a brand new release. Batts, who calls himself a child of the 70’s and 80’s, acknowledges that his sounds are heavily influenced by the artists of the era: ‘Groovy, hooky, warm, familiar and a bit quirky. Think Sly Stone, Frank Zappa, and Kenny Loggins high on Moon Pies back in 74 with a DJ kinda thang.’ This album is a culmination of ideas and musical experimentation meticulously woven together over the better part of the last decade. All songs are written, performed, produced, and engineered by Batts himself. Many hours to capture his soul into sounds, with influences ranging from psychedelic rock, funk, soul, R&B, hip-hop, fusion, and more. Listening to the result is a mind altering trip. This could just become an overlooked funk treasure, good to have discovered it already.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New single: Los Palms || Los Palms

I love to wade through the enormous amount of music that is coming out. But, in all honesty, 99% of the new releases do not click with me. That makes the discovery of a gem all the more valuable, the element of surprise creating an instant dopamine rush. The self-titled debut single by Los Palms is like that. The first ten seconds of Junkie Hotel feel like you have been wandering in the desert in the full sun all day and you suddenly come across a giant pool of fresh water. Los Palms are a band from Adelaide. They have created their own blend of classic California surf rock and Southern American 60’s music, and dubbed it desert jangle. It’s an apt description. The band’s sound elicits images of open plains, heat, dust, cacti, passing tumbleweeds and cowboys on horses riding towards a sunset. The band’s impressive artwork, illustrated by frontman Ant, strengthen that image. Clearly, Los Palms have the aesthetics and sound of a band with ambition.

Los Palms started in 2019, with their first (!) show opening for the Growlers. They are already making waves back home, with their single Roll On being in constant rotation on local radio. They’ve compiled four of their best songs on their first physical release, out March 27. The single is limited to 150 – good luck with getting that one. The band hopes to take their music on the road in Australia later this year, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them do an international tour rather sooner than later. Listen to Lost Phantom for example (video below): a song that hints upon early Allah-las and the Walkmen in their Hundres Miles Off era.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

Gimme 5! || Simon Jackson Shares “Five” Songs That Reflect The Eclectic Sound Of Hogchoker

With ‘Gimme 5!’ we take a peek into the collections of artists we admire. The premise is simple: artists WE like share 5 records THEY love.

I am not really open to electronic dance music and some extreme niches, but otherwise I try to listen to many different music styles. However, when I came across Hogchoker, my head almost exploded: the band from Shanghai plays original, theatrical, punky world music with a message of social justice and inclusivity, spiced by anarchic humor and big brass jazz, funk, salsa, klezmer and ska riffs, with guest musicians like Argentinian opera singer Ernesto ‘Ruso’ Bauer en reggae legends Max Romeo and Big Youth. That intrigued me to the extent that I was very curious about their sources of inspiration. Simon Jackson, singer, songwriter and sax player of Hogchoker, is kind enough to explain this to us in detail. A lot to discover – very interesting, very cool!

Simon Jackson (Hogchoker):
‘Having spent over a year recording what I hope is the most eclectic and entertaining set of songs you’ll hear this year, playing with artists from Argentina, Brazil, China, France, Ireland, Jamaica, the UK and US, I’ve tried to put together a list of the songs that reflect the mix of genres, nationalities and influences on the album. I’m Simon, singer, songwriter and saxophonist for Hogchoker. The album is Roll Up for the Crazy Sound of Hogchoker, our 8th so far (with nearly as many line ups).

New album: Pop Levi || Juicy Diamond

Singer / multi-instrumentalist / producer / cult hero Pop Levi has been actively around in the music business for over 15 years, but now he’s back from never really leaving. The English born / L.A. based artist answers his return-to-form LP Mark Of Paradise from only a few months ago with the true-to-form Juicy Diamond full-length, a fun, sly, and infectious collection of bedroom glam rock. It’s a surprisingly strong and coherent selection of eleven great songs. Listen below to two tracks that stand out for me, Tia and Birthday Girl. Out now through Boiled Records. RIYL: Foxygen, Todd Rundgren, Unknown Mortal Orchestra.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

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