Tag Archive: “Future Sounds”

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Lucius – Pulling Teeth (Mom + Pop) 


This year Lucius released their stellar sophomore album, Good Grief, and they’re not done yet. Nov. 25th they will release their Pulling Teeth 10″ via Mom + Pop, with B-Side “The Punisher” and this titular track. The band felt these songs belonged on their own, separate from Good Grief, partly due to the fact that this song is about writing (or rather writer’s block) of the album. On the chorus, “Something’s coming hold it there just a little bit longer,” they talk about this block and how they eventually broke out by writing this song (super meta stuff). The band says,“Of course it can be interpreted as something deeper, but on a simpler level it was a writers’ tantrum.” Once again Lucius uses their crisp, bouncy pop style to effortlessly connect with deep emotions. The chorus feels like an, “A Change Gonna Come” type mantra, reminding anyone that if you just hold on something new is around the corner.


The Wytches – Crest of Death (Heavenly) 


Don’t you love it when a song begins with the singer just full out screaming in your face? Of course you do. This song expends it energy immediately with the fractured screaming patterns that all end up with the melodic line, “never gonna find a way out.” After the intense intro the song drifts into a dreamy, dissonant, jam for the second half before being ended by that same line. This is the first track off of the English bands anticipated sophomore release, All Your Happy Life, out Sept. 30th via Heavenly. Based on this track the album will be rough, dark, and fuzzy.


Ex Reyes – Only You (Lil Mo Records)


Ex Reyes is the musical project of Bleachers member Mikey Freedom Hart. This song has the melodic structure of a classic Motown soul track, yet it’s surrounded by dream pop instrumentals. Driven by shimmering staccato piano, treble guitar twangs and steady yet sporadic drum beats, with strings, gorgeous vocal harmonies, and other odd sounds making brief appearances. The production here is elaborate yet restrained, though the song amps up at certain points it is mostly even and consistent throughout. For a song that is so light and catchy, it’s lyrics are more melancholy, describing a relationship with someone who has a negative effect on him. The line is repeated, “Only you can make me feel so wrong.”  Their ep Do Something is out Nov. 4th on Lil Mo Records, it will no doubt be a well composed pop-soul album worth giving a listen.


 

Moses Sumney feat. Thundercat – Lonely World (Self-released)


 

Singer Moses Sumney is on tour with James Blake right now and his ep  Lamentations comes out Sept. 30th. This is the latest track released, featuring jazz/electronic artist Thundercat, and the instrumentals here are dynamic and ever changing, at times dark and ambient and times driving and grooving. All lead by Sumney astounding vocals, he keeps pushing his falsetto further and further until it finally reaches it’s ceiling. The vocal effects are very interesting, with Sumney doing distorted harmonies with himself. This song showcases Sumney’s impressive vocal range and wets the appetite for his forthcoming ep.


Sylvan Esso – Radio (Loma Vista Recordings) 


The indie-pop duo of Amelia Meath and Nick Sanborn released one of the best albums of 2014, and their return has been long awaited. Though this new song is just from a 12″ coming out Nov. 18th via Loma Vista Recordings, it’s good to have some new music from the band. This synth-driven track has their signature pop sound, yet the subject matter here is different from what we’ve seen in the past. This song is a criticism of the commercialism of the music industry, describing the publicity cycle of a pop star and repeating the line, “Slave to the radio.” Not only is it a comment on the music industry but how it’s driven by our society, which is clear with the line, “Don’t you look so cute sucking American d***.” It’s not every day you see a successful band be this critical of the music business, it’s evidence that there are serious problems in the system. This song will most likely be on heavy rotation and be worn out while patiently await their next album.


 

 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Zack de le Rocha – digging for windows


de le Rocha’s back baby! Former Rage Against The Machine and One Day As A Lion frontman has released his debut solo single, with an album due next year. Produced by Run The Jewels’ El-P, this song starts minimal with a fuzzy synth and drum pulse then develops with screeching guitars hits. This is a new sound for de la Rocha, still resembling his past projects, but more fresh with that El-P magic touch. “F*** that bright shit,” establishes right away that Zack is back and he’s not messing around. He’s still the master of revolutionary rhymes, painting a vivid picture of the corruption and inequality in our country, all verses coming back to the line, “These days is all night.” RATM fans have been waiting for this moment since Zack appeared on Run The Jewels’ Close Your Eyes and Count To F***, and now it’s finally arrived. No wonder Zack gave Prophets of Rage his blessing, he’s doing cool stuff with El-P. In this tumultuous election time it’s good to know that all member of RATM especially Zack are out fighting the good fight with their music.


Slaves – Take Control (Virgin EMI Records)


Speaking of revolution, English punk duo Slaves’ second album Take Control, is coming out Sept. 30 on Virgin EMI Records. When you go to the bands website their domain serves as a message: you are all slaves. On the title track they urge us to take control. The lyrics describing a daily routine with drummer Isaac Holman repeating the mantra “take control” between each line, until the chorus where frontman Laurie Vincent screams the order.This is everything you want from a punk song: it’s rough, it’s angry, and it has a killer guitar riff. Produced by the Beastie Boys’ Mike D, he had this to say about the album, ““I feel right now the world needs an album like this. Something that is more raw, more alive and less polished. I was impressed with the band’s strong point of view. They actually speak their minds about social topics.”


Tkay Maidza feat. Killer Mike – Carry On (Downtown, Interscope)


The debut album of Australian singer/rapper Tkay Maidza is out Oct. 28 on Downtown/Interscope. It will no doubt be an impressive debut judging by this latest cut from it featuring rap legend Killer Mike (clearly my goal was to get both members of Run The Jewels on the list somehow). This song starts with Tkay singing catchy synth-pop hook a la Robyn or Santigold. Producer Dann Hume composed a dynamic beat, with a perfect balance of catchy and chaotic. Tkay raps a verse about how fame can be exhausting because people try to take advantage of you. Tkay explains, “the song is me saying ‘there’s so many people coming round trying to steal something from me but I just want to have fun.’” So for the second verse Killer Mike steps in and gives her some advice and encouragement as Tkay puts it he, “acts as a big brother”. I’ve never seen something quite like this happen in a song it’s really awesome and kind of adorable. With Tkay’s talent and intellegence, and Killer Mike looking out for her I’m sure she’ll have a great career in music.


Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam – A 1000 Times (Glassnote Records)


When one of your favorite bands breaks up or a member leaves it’s always a bummer, but if you’re luck they’ll team up with a member from another one of those bands and make some more great music. That’s the case with former Vampire Weekend mastermind Rostam Batmanjiv and former Walkmen fronman Hamilton Leithauser. In the couple years, both have been doing some solid musical projects, and now they’ve joined for I Had A Dream That You Were Mine out Sept.23 on Glassnote. Rostam’s bouncy composition backs up Hamilton’s sharp, smokey vocals as he tells a story about love and loss. On this new project storytelling is very important to Rostam, “In some ways, the more that I write songs, the more I feel that telling a story is the most important thing; just being able to close your eyes when you hear some lyrics and go somewhere. It’s worth taking the time to do that, because people respond to it.” This duo is a hipster’s dream and this album will help soothe the pain of Rostam’s recent departure.


Mick Jenkins feat. BADBADNOTGOOD – Drowning (Cinematic Music Group) 


This is the latest single from Chicago rapper Mick Jenkins’ highly anticipated debut album, The Healing Component, out Sept. 23 via Cinematic Music Group. After appearing on their recent album, Jenkins features electronic jazz quartet BADBADNOTGOOD. The group have a history with hip hop, doing interpretations of songs and working with the likes of Ghostface Killah and Tyler The Creator. They provide backing instrumentals that begin with bass and woodblock creating a beat like the ticking of a clock. Mick sings, “When the real hold you down you supposed to drown right. Wait that don’t sound right.” Referencing Kanye’s Bound 2, but adding another meaning with Eric Garner’s final words serving as the eerie chorus, “I can’t breathe.” This song on the other hand does breathe, it takes it’s time. Mick eventually spits a killer verse, and 2/3s of the way through the band breaks into a funky jam before slowing back down for the ending. This is a relevant and important song and the accompanying video is extremely powerful and beautifully shot. This deep, pensive 6 minute song let’s us know that Mick is not your average rapper.


https://soundcloud.com/emilynbrodsky/hands-off-the-stove

Emilyn Brodsky – Hands Off The Stove (Dead Stare Records)


Let’s end on an upbeat note with this bouncy, poppy tune from Emilyn Brodsky. With jangly guitar, smooth organ, and glorious horns this song is a lot of fun, yet with a weighty question at it’s core, “If you’re willing to kill is it really a good intention.”Emilyn told stereogum her inspiration for the sound, “I always wanted to write a huge New Pornographers style triumphant pop outro, so I made myself a chorus of horns and angels singing LALALALA to you.” Emilyn is known for quirky album concepts and titles, and her latest is Emilyn Brodsky’s Digestion out Oct. 14 on Dead Stare Records. This carries over to her lyrics, breaking the fourth wall at the end and declaring, “This is the end of the song.” Listening to this album will no doubt be a good time, now I’ll follow Emilyn’s lead and tell you, this is the end of the post.


 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Microwave – Vomit (SideOneDummy Records)


Recently named Band To Watch by Stereogum, Georgia-based post-hardcore band Microwave have announced their sophomore album, Much Love, out Sept. 30 on SideOneDummy, and they’ve shared this powerful new song and video. This song captures the moment when the party becomes the problem. Frontman Nathan Hardy grew up Mormon and left the church for the Rock ‘n’ Roll lifestyle. On this song he describing a scene, “I hear you down the hallway there puking, I hear your pompous college friends they’re puking outside.”  Shaken by the actions of his party companions he begins to question the meaning of what they’re doing. the first half of the song is gentle and the second half furious, repeating the chorus, “there’s no such thing as love, we just felt vulnerable without a god, without a crutch.” Hardy taps into a truth about how people uses relationships or substances or religion to conquer whatever issues they’re facing. He has this to say about it, “Pretty much anything that people get really passionate about and use to attach meaning to their life is contrived and isn’t inherently meaningful.” This song is a slice of sweet angst and cynicism, paired with insightful examinations of human behavior.


Sam Spiegel & Ape Drums (feat. Assassin)  – Mutant Brain 


Director Spike Jonze made a stir yesterday with his music video/perfume ad for Kenzo World, in which actress Margaret Qualley leaves some stuffy event to run around busting out eratic, primal dance moves. Not only is the video visually stunning, but it features this frenetic track produced by Ape Drums and Spike’s brother Sam Spiegel, featuring dancehall musician Assassin providing wild shouts and screams, perfectly complimenting Margaret’s dancing. This is clearly a nod to Jonze’s Fatboy Slim video where Christopher Walken was the dancing star. This song is super driving and catchy with the obligatory EDM drop, yet it’s a totally fresh and unique song. They couldn’t have asked for a sweeter music video.


Sleigh Bells – It’s Just Us Now (Torn Clean)


Sleigh Bell’s debut album, Treats, shocked the music world, mixing Derek Miller’s punk and metal riffs with Alexis Krauss’ pop sensibilities. I had high hopes for the albums that followed, but was a little disappointed. While is seemed they had exhausted their signature sound, it seems this is not the case with the recent string of singles off their upcoming fourth album, Jessica Rabbit, out Nov. 11 on their own Torn Clean label. Krauss’ lyrics seem more developed, her hooks are super catchy, and Derek’s “True Shred Guitar” is forceful yet melodic. Judging by this track the dynamic duo won’t let us down this November, and maybe their noise-pop rage can help us release some election-fueled fury.


Lambchop – The Hustle (Merge Records/City Slang)


Got 18 minutes to spare? If not, clear your schedule this ones worth it. The lead single and closing track (weird right?) of Lambchop’s new album FLOTUS, out Nov. 4 from Merge/City Slang, is a subtle, yet epic musical  journey, akin to Lou Reed’s Street Hassle. For more than 20 years Nashville’s Lambchop has made some great country-rock albums, yet they’ve made a startling departure for their new album. There is no trace of the band’s country roots, instead they implement electronic elements to make a rich tapestry of sound. This song is guided by a repetitive, pulsing beat and a smattering of instruments making brief appearances. Kurt Wagner’s haunting baritone, reminiscent of Leonard Cohen, only occupies a small portion of the song, yet he tells a sweet, sad love story. The album name stands for For Love Often Turns Us Still,  and that is the case on this track. This is a truly beautiful song and this album will no doubt be one of Lambchop’s finest.


 

 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Swet Shop Boys – T5 (Customs)


 

Swet Shop Boys is a very exciting new rap group made up of Indian American rapper Heems from Das Racist and British Pakistani rapper Riz MC, better known as Riz Ahmed the actor who portrays Naz in the fantastic HBO series “The Night Of.”  T5 is the first single from their upcoming album Cashmere out on 10-14 from Swet Shop Boys own Customs label.  The track begins with vintage Heems lyricism: so witty, so sad and so true.  What starts out as a party anthem as they are kickin’ it in Jaffa, Haifa and Ramallah “looking for love in Palestine” soon turns bleak when they are in an airport attempting to fly home.  “Oh no, we’re in trouble! TSA always wanna burst my bubble. Always get a random check when I rock the stubble” is the so sad that its funny hook in T5.  Donald Trump’s name gets dropped, obviously, and the super short song culminates in the refrain: “Terminal 5 / Terminal 1 / Think we’re termites / Wanna terminate us.”  It’s an unfortunate song for our times, but one that Swet Shop Boys were meant to create with irreverence and flair.


American Football – I’ve Been So Lost for So Long (Polyvinyl Records)


There is a new American Football album coming out soon.  Man, it felt good to type that sentence out.  This is fantastic news as fans of the band have grown great in number and only have one album and one ep from this truly awesome Emo band.  Sure, Mike Kinsella has been releasing solid albums under the name Owen, including one of the best albums of this year, but nothing has been quite as good as American Football’s self-titled opus.  Their new material could have ended up feeling forced (has anyone heard the new Jimmy Eat World song from this week?) but luckily the band seem like they’re picking up from where they left off.  This is just beautifully intricate music that embraces the label “emo” in both subtle and blatant ways.  Musically they have always put together truly fascinating arrangements that are in the same category as The National and do not necessarily scream emo.  Lyrically, however, Kinsella treats American Football like a vehicle for his diary entries with lines like “If you need me / don’t / you can’t trust a man who can’t find his way home” and “I feel so sick / Doctor it hurts when I exist.”  Yet, it all works wonderfully together and results in one of the best songs of the year.  American Football’s next self-titled album is out 10-21 on Polyvinyl Records.


Mannequin Pussy – Emotional High (Tiny Engines)


Philadelphia punk band Mannequin Pussy are back with a vengeance, releasing their sophomore album, Romantic, on 10-28 from Tiny Engines.  Emotional High is the first taste we are getting from the album and it is delicious.  It is a classic loud, crunchy punk song with a nice pop edge to it and is so short that you’ll just want to listen to it on repeat all day.  Most punk songs are not as lyrically warm and fuzzy as Emotional High, which really works for this track.  It’s all about that emotional high you feel when you get nostalgic about all the great people in your life who have sacrificed for your benefit.  Although the song is airy where lyrics are concerned, musically it is definitely heavy and in your face.  This is a pummeling song, forceful and assertive and definitely one to blast.  If the remainder of the album is anything like Emotional High, Romantic could end up being one of the most enjoyable albums of the year.


Kero Kero Bonito – Graduation (Double Denim Records)


Hit play and buckle up for Kero Kero Bonito’s Graduation, the awesome new single from their upcoming album, Bonito Generation, out 10-28 on Double Denim Records.  Kero Kero Bonito is a British band who are inspired by video games and J-Pop music, all of which definitely shines brightly through on Graduation.  The music has video game-esque sound effects of lasers over an almost trap like beat.  It’s an interesting combination that will have your head bobbing.  Super pop female vocals sing the chorus and eventually turn into awkward rapping in English and then Japanese; again, it’s a combination that strangely totally works.  Lyrically this song will be easy to identify with for anyone who spent years and years on education and graduated only to find they didn’t learn anything and have no job prospects, but luckily they “even got a hat that I can throw.”  It’s an absurdist and cartoonish song in the best way possible and should inspire anticipation for what is to come from Kero Kero Bonito.


 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Allah-Las – Could Be You (Mexican Summer)


If you listen to the first couple albums from LA rock band Allah-Las you might think you’re actually listening to a band from the late 60’s. Not only does their style heavily resemble bands like The Zombies, but their lo-fi production completes the homage. This track comes from their forthcoming album Calico Review, out September 9 on Mexican Summer and while the raw rock energy is still present, this new track is much more polished and produced, freshening up their retro sound. This song is all about guitars, driven by a crunchy blues strum with slippery riffs laid over top singer Miles Michaud’s infectious melodies. This is a great summer jam, and it shows that the groups third album is not one you want to miss.


Bellows – Orange Juice (Double Double Whammy)


Bellows is the musical project of Oliver Kalb, a member of Brooklyn’s Epoch collective, home to the likes of Told Slant and Eskimeaux. Orange Juice is quite possibly one of the most interesting songs to come out of a community that is always making something worth listening to. Kalb has taken the folk sound he’s know for and magnified it. There is so much happening in this song, from a variety of piano and synth sounds to all manner of thundering percussion, yet it all works in tandem to deliver an unique sound, somewhere between arena rock and folk-pop. The music here gets bigger and bigger as the song goes on, yet Kalb’s effected multi-tracked vocals stay soft and stolid, one of the breathy tracks is nearly a whisper. Though this song is bright and epic it the lyrics essentially captures a “face-palm” moment of mortifying embarrassment and regret. Times when you’re losing your cool, making a fool or yourself, and, “becoming what I never wanted to.” Bellows’ second album, Fist and Palm is out September 3 on Double Double Whammy, and this track foreshadows another innovative and entertaining release from the folks of The Epoch.


De La Soul feat. Little Dragon – Drawn (AOI Records)


Over the past few months rap legends De La Soul have been releasing singles from their upcoming album And The Anonymous Nobody out August 26 on AOI Records. The group has always had a heavy jazz influence but they are now taking it into new exciting directions. The latest of the five singles released features Swedish band Little Dragon and it their most experimental track yet. This song is a slow burn, the first few minutes belong to Yukimi Nagano’s haunting vocals, backed by a subtle piano tap in tandem with a the soft pluck of a stand-up bass. A drum beat doesn’t even kick in until around the four minute mark, where the guys finally spit some rhymes and finish out the song . The album was funded on Kickstarter where is swiftly met it’s goal. This song is just one of the fantastic collaborations on the album, we also have appearances by Damon Albarn and David Byrne to look forward to.


Bon Iver – 22 (Over S??n) [Bob Moose Extended Cab Version] (Jag Jaguwar)


After dancing with Chance the Rapper and Francis and The Lights at his Eaux Claires festival Justin Vernon debut his new album live. Then he dropped two songs from his forthcoming album 22, A Million out September 30 on Jag Jaguwar, including this extended version of album’s lead single. Much like the previous song on this list, this song has plenty of breathing room. The influence of recent collaborators James Blake and Francis and the Lights is apparent, with Vernon’s signature vocals laid over minimal instrumentation, guided by a pitch-shifted voice sample repeating “2,” and “It might be over soon,” delivering a wise mantra for any difficult circumstance or experience. The backing synth sound occasionally shutters and cuts out as if another frequency is interfering. A gentle sax solo and some subtle orchestration make appearances, but more often than not this song is filled with open spaces, making Bon Iver’s already powerful sound even more intimate and affecting. Justin Vernon started out making folk music, then his second album was filled with grand arrangements, and now he has scaled his sound back down and taken it in a surprising yet delightful new direction. You never know what to expect from a Bon Iver song but you know it will take you somewhere you’ve never been before.


 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Kishi Bashi – Hey Big Star (Joyful Noise Recordings)


 

After a bout of writers block, multi-instrumentalist Kishi Bashi worked with programs like Ableton Live and experimented with new sounds and production techniques. The result was his existing orchestral pop sound rolled in with 70’s and 80’s influences. This is clear on Hey Big Star (presumably a nod to the band Big Star) which begins with a slide on a violin string looped until sharp shimmering 80’s synths make an appearance and drive the song, with a myriad of musical layers coming and going throughout. Kishi is great at making complex compositions and infectious vocal hooks that turn his songs into indie-pop juggernauts. This is a bright, explosive love song that is unfairly catchy and I’ve been addicted to it ever since I heard it. His album Sonderlust is out Sept.16 via Joyful Noise, and not only will it have great jams like this one, but it will see Kishi’s sound in it’s new evolved state.


 

Pfarmers – Red Vermin (Joyful Noise Recordings)


Last year members of The National and Menomena announced a side project (no, not EL VY) this National member was Bryan Devendorf (no not LNZNDRF) and the band is Pfarmers. Bryan, Menomena frontman Danny Seim, and composer/multi-instrumentalist Dave Nelson. “Red Vermin” starts of soft and subtle, with each line of the verse punctuated with a brief musical rest and then a burst from all instruments, like a quick breath in followed by a violent exhale. The song gradually builds and ultimately erupts into a dense crescendo with horns, synths, and guitars burying the melody in a chaotic blanket of sound.  While, this band started off experimental it is much more accessible than LNZNDRF. Each band members contributions are unmistakable, this album will see them all bringing their different talents to the table to make some different than we’ve heard from them in the past.


Mac Miller feat. Anderson Paak – Dang! (Warner Bros. Records)


Following in the footsteps of Domo Genesis, Chance the Rapper, Schoolboy Q, Macklemore, KAYTRANDA, and The Game; Mac Miller has joined forces with the multi-talented Anderson Paak (I’m beginning to think it’s a prerequisite of making a rap album in 2016). I can’t complain though, Paak released a great album early in the year and his infectious, smokey vocals add a layer of production value to any track where they appear (and they’ve made a lot of appearances). This is the case with this cut from Mac Miller’s forthcoming album, The Divine Feminine, out Sept. 16 via Warner Bros. Records. Though Anderson doesn’t get all the credit, Miller’s expression of love, while often crude and misguided which is to be expected, is entertaining with some clever wordplay and an undeniable flow. Mac showed some artistic growth with last year’s GO:OD AM and now it seems he’s going off in some sort of “romantic” direction. Regardless this song is a well composed, smooth summer jam with a funky beat. It comes complete with this colorful video, where the guys are stuck in a loop of “losing” their respective lovers.


Goat – Try My Robe (Sub Pop Records)


 

Swedish psych-rock outfit Goat are known for their exciting live shows, their masked faces, and their eclectic blend of influences. This is the case with their new single “Try My Robe” from their album Requiem out Oct. 7 via Sub Pop. This song is driven by various stringed instruments (maybe sitar) harmonizing to make a driving folk-twang, backed by earthy percussion including handclaps, there is a Mediterannean vibe. While this song is super catchy there is an ominous undertone, especially when viewing the masked participants on the cover art, this group feels like the middle ground between The Polyphonic Spree and Slipknot. Their music gives off the air of a band of nomads and troubadours travelling around and sharing their music. This album should not be missed it will no doubt be one of the most interesting albums of 2016.


 

 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.


Mass Gothic – “A Run”


Mass Gothic, the duo of Hooray for Earth’s Noel Heroux and Zambri’s Jessica Zambri, have already released a stellar self-titled debut album this year on Sub Pop. They are back with a new EP titled Sup Goth on 8/5 via Sub Pop again.  “A Run” is the lead single from the EP and finds Mass Gothic branching out in new directions.  The song sounds like an awesome mixture between Animal Collective at their poppiest and Suicide at their darkest.  Heavy synths mix with fractured drums and a very Panda Bear-esque vocal performance.  “A Run” is gloomy and aggressive, yet soft and incredibly catchy.  It is a very dense track, revealing more of itself on each successive listen.  Mass Gothic seem to be really coming into their own and carving out a distinctive sound, which is really exciting for the rest of us.


Space Mountain – “Never Lonely” feat. Ava Trilling


Cole Kinsler records singer-songwriter music under the name Space Mountain and has been consistently putting out new music since 2013. “Never Lonely” is the first taste we are getting from his next full length album, Big Sky, which comes out 8/26 on Dust Etc.  Ava Trilling, from the band Forth Wanderers, takes over the lead vocal throughout the song, which tells the story of a lonely housewife as she waits around for her husband to return.  It’s a bit gloomy, but the somewhat country inspired music helps it not to be a total bummer.  Kinsler shows up towards the end of his song with his signature deep, deadpan vocals adding even more depth to the song.  Kinsler is somewhat reminiscent of Stephin Merritt of Magnetic Fields with a hint of Stephen Malkmus as well.  It’s a really solid single, which inspires excitement for the upcoming album.


Kaye – “UUU”


Charlene Kaye is a singer-songwriter known primarily for being the frontwoman of San Fermin. Her alter-ego Kaye finds her in much different sonic territory, which is hugely rewarding for the listeners based on her fantastic new single “UUU.”  This single is the first off of her upcoming EP titled Honey, which is coming out on 8/19.  She describes writing this song as a genre experiment, saying: “When I wrote UUU I was listening to a lot of 90s R&B … That summer, ‘Call Me Maybe’ was on rotation constantly and I was obsessed with it.”  Kaye wanted to see if she could create a similar sound, and she has largely succeeded with “UUU.”  This is a straight up awesome pop song with classic structure, great music and a wonderful vocal performance.  Plus there’s a guitar solo!  Press play and crank this one up.


ESP Ohio – “Royal Cyclopean”

Guided By Voices nation received great news, which came two-fold. First of all, Doug Gillard is rejoining Guided By Voices, and secondly, him and Robert Pollard have started making music under the name ESP Ohio as well.  The first taste of this new project is the single “Royal Cyclopean,” which is coming out as a single on 10/21 on Rockathon Records.  It’s a great song with fantastic sounding electric guitar, some triumphant horns and strange poetic lyrics sung to perfection in that distinctive Robert Pollard.  It blazes along at only two and a half minutes and ends abruptly, leaving the listener wanting more.  Sound familiar?  If you are a fan of Guided By Voices then this song will definitely be right up your alley, and if you haven’t been initiated yet, this is a great jumping off point to show what makes the Gillard-Pollard combination so noteworthy.

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Black Surf – Sink (Cowboy Records) 


Much like The Postal Service’s Give Up and Animal Collective’s Merriwether Post Pavillion, surf-grunge band Black Surf’s debut ep, Let’s Pretend It’s Summer, is another album that was born out of file sharing technology. The band sent files back and forth from Leeds to Syndey before meeting up in the studio to lay down the tracks. Sink is the latest single from the album, possessing a bouncy beach rock charm, reminiscent of bands like Surfer Blood or Weezer, but they don’t stick to one sound too long. The guitar sound on this song is very dynamic, varying depending on the part of the song: from a sharp, pitchy twang to a soft, syrupy strum, to a fuzzed out bellow. With a beautiful sentiment at it’s core, “”Let’s sink, in the moment we’ll let it be.” It is an energetic burst of distorted guitar, injecting infectious surf rock with grunge fury. Let’s Pretend It’s Summer, fittingly comes out August 26th on Cowboy Records.


Prophets Of Rage – Prophets Of Rage


Prophets Of Rage is the political supergroup comprised of members from Rage Against The Machine, Public Enemy, and Cypress Hill. After the announcement of this collaboration, we’ve been patiently waiting to see what this new combo would sound like, now this song has given us the answer. It is exactly what you would expect and more, first hearing Tom Morello’s unmistakable guitar sound, then Chuck D’s familiar vocals. The gang gives you a taste of all their styles, with the verses capturing the spirit of 80’s and 90’s hip hop, and the chorus being a classic RATM groove. Tom Morello calls it an, “elite task force of revolutionary musicians determined to confront this mountain of election year bullshit.” Not only is this a driving pump up song, but it is also just what we need at this time. With all the violence that is occurring, people on both sides keep saying we just need to love and unify, which is true, love can definitely move us forward, but anger and rage (within reason) in the face of tyranny can also move us forward. The band will have an ep out later this year, so “clear the way for the Prophets of Rage.”


Wilco – Locator (Anti Records)


Last year Wilco surprised us all with their album Star Wars, where they outfitted their folk rock style with some noise rock fuzz. To celebrate the one year anniversary of Star Wars, they released Locator and announced their 10th album, Schmilco, out September 9th. On this song they continue the sound they established on Star Wars, with sludgy guitar and bass, while snares and softly tapped. The song builds in the chorus until the sound suddenly drops out for a beat, only to be met by a screeching guitar as the song builds, before simmering back down and fading out. Wilco is continue to explore the sound that worked so well for them on the last record, and judging by this song and the album cover, this record will be as wacky and wonderful as the last.


 

Touché Amoré – Displacement (Epitaph Records)


Great art often comes from intense pain. This pain often comes when a loved one is lost, and when that loved one is your mother a whole new level of grief is discovered. Recently, we have seen many artists express this grief through music:  Local Native’s Columbia, Protomartyr’s Ellen, and Sufjan Stevens’ Carrie and Lowell. Jeremy Bolm, lead singer of post-punk band Touché Amoré, recently lost his mother to cancer and the band’s forthcoming album, Stage Four, focuses on his response to this loss. On this song Jeremy tries to make sense of the entire situation, but in particular he examines his mother’s religious beliefs, his lack of those beliefs, and what implications that has on the afterlife. Dealing with denial and anger, “I asked your god how could you but never heard an answer,” depression and suicidal thoughts, “Last week I crashed my car and I walked away unscathed. Maybe that was you asking me to keep my faith,” and while Jeremy doesn’t get any answers or signs from god he does find some solace, “I’m not sure what I believe, well I think that’s understood, but I know she’s looking out for me the way she said she would.” While songs of this nature are usually more soft and intimate, the hardcore venue makes this song so powerful. Hearing the pain and frustration erupt from Jeremy, makes this one of the most genuine, emotional performances of the genre. Stage Four is out September 16th on Epitaph Records, and this song shows us that it will be an intense, heart-breaking yet inspiring record.


Hiss Golden Messenger – Biloxi (Merge Records)


MC Taylor recently announced Hiss Golden Messenger’s fifth album Heart Like a Levee, out October 7th on Merge Records. The album is about his struggle between being a traveling musician and a father. He wrote the album in a hotel room when he was “wrenched apart by my responsibilities to my family and to my music.” Biloxi succinctly describes this struggle, with the repeated line, “It’s hard lord, lord it’s hard.” Taylor describes his trials with cryptic, fantastic lyrics talking about jungles and dragons. Though the subject matter is very heavy, it doesn’t weigh down this bright folk song, that skips along without slowing down, lead by Taylor’s unique timbre, sounding like Bob Dylan mixed with The Tallest Man on Earth. This is an addictive acoustic rock number, that it is built for and deserving of repeated plays.


 

Welcome to Future Sounds! Every Wednesday Ghettoblaster brings you a handful of singles from upcoming albums to excite and entice your ears. Below you’ll find songs that really stand out as essential listening. So please sit back, relax and treat yourself to some seriously great music.

Izzy True – “Total Body Erasure” (Don Giovanni)


From the moment the cowbell rings and the classic guitar line screeches to a start in the opening second of “Total Body Erasure” you know you’re in for a treat.  Izzy True  is fronted by Isabel Reidy, whose vocal performance propels this truly awesome classic rock n’ roll song.  There is desperation and confusion over the surreal lines in the song, including “You in your power, be my beautiful alien savior, let loose that beam, give me total body erasure.”  Even with the great vocal performance and standout lyricism, the music does not take a back seat.  Built around a classic guitar riff and upbeat propelling drums, the song soars along and really ends too soon.  Izzy True has their debut full length album, Nope, coming out 8-5 via Don Giovanni.  Mark your calendars.


Mallrat – “For Real”


Mallrat is a 16 year old girl from Australia who makes enjoyable pop music where she flows between singing and rapping effortlessly.  She has released her debut EP, Uninvited in Australia, but there are no details on an American release as of yet.  Her most recent single “For Real” finds her singing a catchy song about everyday love over a solid beat and a great 80s inspired keyboard line.  Mallrat has said she isn’t sure if this is a happy or sad song about love.  “For Real” contains the lyrics “When you smile for real, it makes me smile for real” and “Didn’t even want to die once this week,” which emphasize this struggle between feeling happy and sad when being in love.  This is the type of song from an up and coming artist that makes you want to pay attention.


Angel Olsen – “Shut Up Kiss Me” (Jagjaguwar)


Angel Olsen is one of the more interesting singer-songwriters currently making music.  She is an artist who exists in dualities.  There is her soft and contemplative side filled with beautiful passages of music.  “Shut Up Kiss Me” displays the other side of Angel Olsen, the more urgent and aggressive side.  This is the second single from her upcoming album My Woman, which comes out 9-2 on Jagjaguwar.  Fittingly, My Woman is split up into an A side and a B side, with the front half containing this song and other more rocking songs.  Olsen also directed the accompanying video, which finds her going from an insistent lover making demands of a partner to seemingly losing it a little bit, all while in a roller skating rink.  It’s a fun video of a really stand out track.


Golden Suits – “Is it Wrong” (Hit City U.S.A.)


Fred Nicolaus, one half of the indie pop duo Department of Eagles, is back with a new single from his solo project Golden Suits.  “Is it Wrong” finds Nicolaus going for a very classic, very poppy sound, which focuses on a big chorus and very uplifting folky feel overall.  Nicolaus has described the new direction of his songwriting for “Is it Wrong” in the following way: “I’ve spent so much time writing restrained mid-tempo folky ballads that I started to get bored of tiptoeing around the margins of good taste–I wanted to write a song that was big and direct and could potentially faceplant. Like a fastball-down-the-middle-of-the-plate, Bruce-Springsteen-waving-an-American-flag-on-a-mountain type of song.”  There is no word yet on a release date for a follow up album on Hit City U.S.A.


 

Jidenna – “Little Bit More” (Epic Records)


Mr. “Classic Man” himself Jidenna is back with another single off of his highly anticipated upcoming release Long Live the Chief, which is out sometime in the near future from Epic Records.  “Little Bit More” finds Jidenna in total Island mode, delivering a song with a classic smooth Jamaican beat and feel.  It’s got a definite steel drum sound to make this ideal for all your upcoming summer parties.  This is just a light and airy pop song where Jidenna is singing to a girl he is dancing with on the dance floor.  It’s not rocket science, but it sure results in a really enjoyable pop song.

Ezra Furman – Teddy I’m Ready (Bella Union)


Last year Chicago rocker Ezra Furman released his breakout album, Perpetual Motion People, which showcased his wide range of eclectic influences and impressive lyrical ability. This year he is releasing, Big Fugitive Life, due in August via Bella Union. The EP is half acoustic and the other half, which this track comes from, is rock and roll. This song begins bare and building, a punk rock hymn lead by Furman’s vocals and crunchy guitar.  The lyrics set the scene of Furman in a situation where he feels like an outsider and wants to flee. In the chorus he references Little Richard with the lyrics, “Teddy I’m Ready to Rock and Roll.” The song blooms in the second verse with a genre-hopping composition of Beach Boys-esque harpsicord, Saxaphone solos reminiscent of Clarence Clemons, and a sauntering doo-wop drum beat. In this verse a love story unfolds between Ezra and a girl, but “the truth” gets in the way. Perhaps this truth refers to Furman’s bisexuality or his feeling of being an outcast, either way the lyrics are heartbreaking and empowering as he sings, “…they don’t allow no crying in the cold straight world of men, so I build my little fortress ’til I can get even.” This song captures the feeling of having intense pain and frustration coupled with excitement and hope for the future. Furman describes it as, “Wanting to go somewhere you’ve never been, knowing you’re on your way.” Furman is a master of singing songs for the undervalued and disregarded, and this track does just that, inspiring like-minded listeners to, “Make a big noise to the sky.”


Twist – Can’t Wait (Buzz Records)


Songwriter Laura Hermiston has joined forces with Holy Fuck’s Brian Borcherdt to make Twist, and the band’s second single released is full of surprises. This song has the bones of a catchy dream-pop song, but these two add in some surprising elements that make the track really stand out. In the verse, an off note or a jarring sounds will pop in occasionally, giving the otherwise straightforward melody some character. Then, they rock out in the chorus with crash cymbals and crunchy electric guitar complimented by lush treble twangs.  Finally, building to an instrumental crescendo outfitted with feedback and Hermiston’s echoing howls. Their debut album will be released later this summer on Buzz Records and this song’s title captures how I feel about it: Can’t Wait.


Carnage feat. Lil Yachty – Mase In ’97


In 1997, rap legend Mase was featured on Notorius B.I.G’s posthumous hit Mo Money, Mo Problems and his debut album Harlem World, went multi-platinum. This year rising rap star Lil Yachty released his debut mixtape and appeared on one of the biggest rap albums of the year (Chance The Rapper’s Coloring Book). 1997 was Mase’s year. 2016 is Yachty’s year. That is essentially the point of this song, it is the obligatory bragadocious, money-lovin, bitch-gettin rap cliche’s, but done creatively and amusingly. Carnage cuts up a couple trumpet samples to make an infectious, minimal beat, on which Lil Yachty furiously spits the fastest, most impressive rhymes we’ve heard from him yet. No word on a new album from either of these guys, but hopefully we’ll see more tracks like this in the future.


 

Happy Diving – Holy Ground (Topshelf Records)


San Fransisco garage rock outfit, Happy Diving deliver this brash, melodic rock song, on which singer Matt Berry passionately belts over fuzzed out guitars that sound like they’re blowing out your speakers. If ever there was a song that captured the sound of turning it up to 11, this song does that, with catchy hooks cloaked in noise. Much like the last song this track is very short, but it is bursting with energy from start to finish. Their second album Electric Soul Unity is out August 26th via Topshelf Records.


Pixies – Um Chugga Lugga (Pixiesmusic/PIAS Recordings)


This year has seen a resurgence of music from beloved 90’s bands with releases from Garbage, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and now Pixies have announced their new album, Head Carrier, out this fall via PIAS and the band’s own website, their first album with new bassist Paz Lenchantin. The title perfectly describes how this raw rock song chugs along building to a chaotic crescendo with gang vocal speak-singing, reminiscent of White Stripes, repeating, “Um Chugga Lugga on the side of the road.” This track indicates that, despite the change in members,  this new album will give us the classic Pixies sound we know and love.


Maggie Rogers – Alaska


Maggie Rogers will go down in show business history as another amazing discovery story. Much like Adele’s support boosted Tobias Jesso Jr.’s career, in a master class at NYU this month, Pharrell was awestruck and inspired by this song. After telling the superstar singer how she used to play folk music, took a couple years off to travel, then had a “spiritual experience” with dance music in France, she played him her “unfinished” song and the college student became a rising star.  This song begins with an airy synth-marimba sound and primitive percussion, adding in subtle piano trills, electronic drum beats, and a synth-flute sound reminiscent of Justin Bieber’s What Do You Mean. With this song Rogers established herself not only as a strong composer but as a powerful pop vocalist. With lyrics inspired by her nature hikes, she paints a picture of gorgeous landscapes, and wars with another version of herself as she tries to bask in the glory of the moment, “Leave me be, I’m exhaling. You and I, there’s air in between.” Her combined influences of Folk and French dance music, create an innovative pop sound that is earthy yet synthetic. Maggie’s success is so new that she isn’t even signed to any label yet, but we will no doubt be hearing more from her in the near future.