Best New Music
I Got the Hots for Charlie Watts
The ExBats bear the rare distinction of being a daddy-daughter band. Pops Kenny McLain is on the guitar and daughter Inez McLain handles drums and vocals. An unusual setup often begats an unusual recording and to its credit, the groups second-ish album, I got the hots for Charlie Watts is a weirder record. Yet, paradoxically, the weirdness is built off classic sounding base.
No doubt, this pair is influenced by garage rock and the early punk scene. “I was in your video
I’ve become a pretty big Child Bite fan over the years. It definitely started with the Detroit quartet’s berserk live show. Getting into the band’s records took a little longer, but I eventually came around to those too. I ultimately concluded that the band was best when digested in short, half hour chunks. Burnt Offerings: Covers and Rarities 2010-2017 definitely challenges that assertion. It’s a 28 song, 95 minute collection spread over two discs. The first disc is pretty much an ent
Crazy and the Brains
Out in the Weedz [EP]
The key to Crazy & the Brains is that they are both totally relatable and completely alien at the same time. On Out in the Weedz, the band’s first release in almost three years, the crew returns in somewhat of a new incarnation. “Candy Yamz” is still driven by vocalist Chris Urban’s skewed perspective and xylophonist’s Jeff Rubin bouncing planks, but since their earliest days, they’ve added Brett Maverick on bass (though he’s been in the crew for a while now), and more recently, guitar
Wild Animals are a power-pop trio that hail from Madrid, but on listening, they sound like something from the mean, breezy streets of the OC. After listening to The Hoax, I went back into their archives becauseI I honestly didn't think they'd be that good, and what I found was very much a spiritual successor to Superchunk. Now, I know that comparison gets tossed around a lot but the band doesn't just limit themselves by it. In fact, The Hoax prides itself on sweet, sugary bursts
Northern Ireland trio Lost Avenue keep moving forward on their debut LP Fears. The album finds the band in familiar territory, continuing the “punk avant-garde” style which they have cultivated over the past eight years.
That isn’t to say that Lost Avenue hasn’t progressed or evolved. While Fears is clearly a LA album, full of dramatic composition and sudden musical switches to keep you on your toes, it also displays a growing maturity in the band, with songs t
Pinkus Abortion Technician
It’s a daring strike to open an album with a cover, so in true Melvins fashion, Buzz, Dale and the boys double down on the gambit and kick off Pinkus Abortion Technician, their 28th(?) album with two covers- a spirited take on the James Gang classic “Stop!” which the band warps into a timely cover of Butthole Surfers’ “Moving to Florida” wherein guitarist/vocalist clearly has a ball portraying a backwards yahoo worried about “soviet Jews.” For the past decade or so, the core Melvs,
Ezra Furman's past two records are criminally under looked, off-kilter pop rock. But new album Transangelic Exodus is unlikely to be confused with anything else in your music library. His songs are narrative in the vein of a singer songwriter, but delivered like he’s about to lose everything. His band the Visions (formerly known as the Boy-Friends) are happy to follow him off the beaten path. (Check out drummer/percussionist Sam Durkes on "Compulsive Liar" and "The Great Unknown.") The
Life in Vacuum
All You Can Quit
Toronto's Life in Vacuum can best be described as lightning in a bottle. One that, in the realm of post-hardcore and screamo, simply cannot be corked. First off, if you love bands like At The Drive-In, Drive Like Jehu and Refused, well mix 'em all together and this is what you'll get. I didn't think they'd be able to top their last record 5... but All You Can Quit certainly comes just as close with a narrative that's just as disorderly and just as cathartic.
There are a
If you haven't heard Wax Idols just yet, I'd advise you to take in their last LP American Tragic. It sets the stage perfectly for Happy Ending, the band's fourth record, but more so, these two albums (and don't get me wrong, all their albums are pretty solid) paint a lush musical landscape that manifests as some of the best post-punk music I've ever heard. They're like a two-part movie to be honest, but what makes Happy Ending stand even taller is that the band finds itse