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Friday, October 20, 2017

Andy K. Leland: Happy Daze

Happy Daze is the debut EP from Italy based singer/songwriter Andy K. Leland. The six tracks are acoustic based with minimal instrumentation, instead being built around Leland's unique vocal style and songwriting. The songs are short and oh so sweet sounding, though at times they seem to just stop rather than ending and sounding unfinished. The album could also benefit from a bit more instrumentation and certainly from better production. That said, this is an intensely interesting record, by an artist with his own sound and direction. Stream and buy Happy Daze at the link below.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Nick Ferrio: Soothsayer

Soothsayer is the new album from Ontario based singer/songwriter Nick Ferrio. The ten tracks are solid indie power pop, with plenty of twang, catchy hooks and energy. Some of the tracks have a decidedly radio ready vibe, while others are quirky and ethereal, showing a songwriter unafraid to venture out of the box to find artistic satisfaction. The production is a bit flat with instruments coming off somewhat muddled and a professional mastering would improve the sound, but as a whole, a good record with lots to recommend it. Steam and buy Soothsayer at the link below.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Digster Wednesday Playlists

The Wednesday Digster Playlists serve up the Rock/Metal playlist category in this week's installment. Featuring playlists such as their Rock Icons, Pop Punk, Alternative Buzz, Guitar Legends and 2017 Songpick Best Songs, get all of Digster's Rock/Metal playlists at the link below.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Existente: Theta Series - EPv1

Theta Series - EPv1 is the debut album from Porto Portugal based Existente on Arctic Dub Records. The six tracks deliver 40 minutes of  dark ambient drones, with melodic overtones and integral noise. Meant as music to represent a geometric mantra for meditative endeavors, the pieces envelop the senses, while not engulfing the mind. This is a solid record, but breaks no new ground and is not as adventurous as the work coming from others in the field. Stream and buy Theta Series - v1 at the link below.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Minor Birds: The Alchemist

The Alchemist is the new EP from Oaklasnd based Minor Birds, aka C. Wilde. The three tracks showcase an accomplished classically trained multi-instrumentalist, with a strong sense of fluidity and emotion. The vocals are reminiscent of EMA and Zola Jesus, with a dramatic flair and a dark intimacy. Instrumentally the EP glistens with strong arrangements and beautifully executed melodic lines. Discover one of the best works of the year and an absolute must have. Stream and buy The Alchemist at the link below.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Escobar: The Biggest Sound

UK/US label Dirty Water Records brings us The Biggest Sound, the debut album from Lomoges, France based band Escobar. This blog features a wide array of musical genres, but our roots have always been in punk and post-punk. We love hearing great punk rock from around the world and Escobar are a real treat. Raw, inventive and dynamic, with sonic influences of The Undertones and Stiff Little Fingers, the twelve tracks will grab you by the arse and kick you to the curb. Go to work, turn this up loud and bang your head on the boss' door. Stream and buy The Biggest Sound at the link below.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Fisherman & The Sea: Beggar Princess EP

Beggar Princess is the debut EP from Helsinki band The Fisherman & The Sea. The four tracks are tasty folkrock, that unfortunately marks another chapter in the Mumfordization of music, Like the Lumineers and a myriad of others, this work is derivative of the Mumfords and while enjoyable, does the world really need another clone grabbing at the coat tails. This is clearly a group that can write good songs and perform them with aplomb, so they should take that talent and find their own sound, rather than being another wannabe. Decide for yourself, stream and buy Beggar Princess at the link below.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Digster Wednesday Playlists

For this week's Digster Playlists we present something a little different, with Digster's Decades Playlists. Besides the expected 60's, 70's, etc., Digster gives us New Wave Hits of the 80's, Rock Icons, Def Jam Classics and many more. Listen to all the Decades playlists at the link below.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Bonnie Doon: Dooner Nooner

Dooner Nooner is the new album from Toronto post-punk band Bonnie Doon. While comparisons to the inimitable Sleater-Kinney are unavoidable, Bonnie Doon reside in no none's shadow. The nine tracks are as edgy as a straight razor, with a nice dissonant flair and a rawness that drives home a bit of hardcore authenticity. The album has one of my favorite lines of all time: "Take me to the fucking beach!" Turn this one up load and upset the neighbors. Stream and buy Dooner Nooner at the link below.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Courtney Farren: Nothing Like It

Courtney Farren's debut EP, Nothing Like It, is a look at an artist the defines originality. Blending a minimalist approach with a Bohemian sensibility, the six tracks are intimate, beautiful and completely compelling. The New York City based Farren, brings the lineage of Suzanne Vega and Edie Brickell into a thoroughly modern  focus with songs that touch the fabric of one's life and a voice as delicate yet commanding as a fine dark chocolate. This is one of the best records this year and is an absolute must have. Watch the videos for EP tracks Nothing Like It and Hard To Tell, then stream and buy Nothing Like It at the link below.

Friday, October 6, 2017

The Lymbs: Neon

Neon is the new EP from Oakland based band The Lymbs. The five tracks are sensual indie blues, with an atmospheric vibe and an edgy sonic signature. Alternating between intimate and heavy in a way reminiscent of NIN, but without the glitch, this EP is both engaging and compelling. Full of incredibly tasteful instrumental passages and dark vocals that are haunting and beautiful. This is just a super strong EP and leaves the listener yearning for much more. It is a definite must have. Stream and download Neon at the link below.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

The Whiskey Charmers: The Valley

The Valley is the sophomore album from Detroit band The Whisky Charmers. The eleven tracks flawlessly blend blues rock, alt-country and folk rock into a masterful album that is sultry, swinging, heavy when it should be and intimate at all times. This is a band unafraid to show their grasp of somewhat arcane styles, by dragging them into a modern interpretation that works from start to finish. Highlighted by strong vocals and musicianship, this album is a must have. Stream and buy The Valley at the link below.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Digster Wednesday Playlists

Today we start a new weekly feature Digster Playlists. We have partnered with the Digster Music Blog to feature their playlists every Wednesday.  Every week we will feature links to different playlists from Digster, representing a wide range of genres, as well as special playlists from major artists and playlists featuring music current in different countries. This weekly feature will give our readers access to a much wider selection of music and we think you'll be excited by the range and depth of the playlists we feature. Check out this week's inaugural playlists below. Enjoy!

This week's inaugural Digster playlists are everything indie. What you'll find are great playlists that include: Toe Tappin' Indie, Ultimate 2017 Festival Guide, Music You Should Know, Indie Covers, The In Sound and many more great indie playlists.  Get them all at the link below.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Jamie 4 President: The Heartbreak Campaign

The Heartbreak Campaign, from Barcelona based BCore Disc Records, is the thrid album from Jamie 4 President, the side project of Wild Animals guitarist/vocalist Jamie Ruiz Gren. The ten tracks are catchy indie rock reminiscent of bands like Guided By Voices, Jimmy Eat World and The Cure. Featuring strong vocals and harmonies, tight arrangements and some tasty guitar licks, this is an album that shines from start to finish and will be welcome addition to everyone's music collection.It is a must have. Stream and buy The Heartbreak Campaign at the link below.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Ummagma: LCD

LCD is the new EP from the great Canadian/Ukranian duo Ummagma, aka Shauna McLarnon and Alexander Kretov. The EP is a 4 track masterwork that includes contributions from Cocteau Twins' Robin Guthrie and Curve's Dean Garcia. Few acts have demonstrated such a massive level of artistic growth across their releases, while continuing to innovate musically. Ummagma are a pair to follow and this EP is an absolute must have. Stream and buy the digital & CD versions of LCD at the first link or stream and buy the limited edition cassette release via Label Obscura at the second link.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Patrick Grant: A Sequence Of Waves

A Sequence Of Waves is the new album from New York artist/producer Patrick Grant. Fusion music has always been an art form that is hard to pin down and this album is no different. Technical proficiency abounds, with tight, complex arrangements and interesting instrumental interplay. The album has flashes of King Crimsonesque rock, theatrical style passages and nods to jazz and classical forms. It is also an album that stands as an artistic endevour for its own sake, rather than one that will find any kind of wide audience. If your tastes tend to the progressive side, this is an album that will fulfill your needs. Stream and buy A Sequence Of Waves at the link below.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

The Search: Echo

Echo is the new album from Swedish band The Search. Echo will appeal to those who like stylish music in the vein of Depeche Mode and New Order. The ten tracks are atmopheric and haunting, with plenty of synths and guitars, minimalist beats and nice ambient layering. Like much of Swedish music, this is an album for those that like their music to flow rather than careen. Music that is smooth, tasteful and ethereal. Stream and download Echo at the link below.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Dan Rico: Flesh & Bone

Flesh & Bone is the new EP from Chicago musician Dan Rico on France's Shit In Cans Records. The three tracks are retro pop-punk goodness with touches of rockabilly and R&B. These are the kind of tracks that never go out of fashion. What you have here is a singer/songwriter giving you no pretense, no gimmick rock as it has been done since the beginning, straight from the heart. Stream and buy Flesh & Bone at the link below.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Ponytails: Ponytails

Vancouver band Ponytails have released their S/T debut EP. The six tracks share sonic space with bands like Real Estate, Beach Fossils and Ducktails. With a smooth sheen, abundant nice guitar licks and crisp vocals. As a whole the EP is highly enjoyable and carries a bit more edge than the aforementioned bands. Not any new ground here, just good solid indie rock. Stream and download Ponytails at the link below.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Steve Azar & The Kings Men: Down At The Liquor Store

Down At The Liquor Store is the new album from Mississippi artist Steve Azar & The Kings Men. The thirteen tracks are a stylish and polished take on Americana music that effortlessly blends country, blues and rock. What results is a tasty album full of radio ready tracks. Tight arrangements and crisp musicianship frame Azar's vocals that glisten with feeling and authenticity. This is a strong album throughout, with the only negative being a decidedly studio musician feel, rather than real edge or energy. Stream Down At The Liquor Store at the link below.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Oh! Gunquit: Lightning Likes Me

Lightning Like Me is the new album from London rockers Oh! Gunquit. The ten tracks have a retro rock-a-billy feel, with a nice lo-fi edge and more rawness than a piece of meat on a black eye. Energy abounds as the album unfolds into a punk dance party that will raise the roof and annoy the neighbors. This is a perfect slice of the very trendy retro pie and is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Lightning Likes Me at the link below.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Lotte Kestner: Off White

Off White is the new album from former Trespassers William member and Chemical Brothers collaborator Lotte Kestner. The twelve tracks are a testament to a transcendent artist, who has created an album of sublime beauty. The songs weave an intimate simplicity into the perfect vehicle for Kestner's mesmerizing vocals and redefine the universality of indie folk as an art form. This is one of the best albums we have heard this year and it is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Off White at the link below.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Blue Hour: Always

Always is the new album from Seattle's The Blue Hour. The eleven tracks overflow with a delicate, yet powerful beauty that is at once compelling. The songs have an engaging complexity of textures that play out as an atmospheric excursion of the senses, creating both imagery and aural excitement. Combining the best elements of folk and dreampop, with a touch of Bohemian passion, the album transforms the sonic space it occupies into an intimate cocoon of sound. A definite must have. Stream and buy Always at the link below.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Ocean Forest: Ocean Forest

Ocean Forest is the S/T debut album from the Myrtle Beach band on North Carolina's Silber Records. The nine tracks make a definiative statement as one of the best albums we've heard this year. Produced by Brian McKenzie of FZB regulars Electric Bird Noise, this album is a testament to all that's good in shoegaze and psychedelic music. We can always count on getting fine music from Silber Records and this album is an absolute must have. Stream and buy Ocean Forest at the link below.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Local Motive: Grams

Grams is the debut full length from Chicago band Local Motive. The nine tracks have a retro R&B feel complete with standout brass and guitar parts, as well as tasteful changes in dynamics. Unfortunately, the album seems to miss the mark in terms of somewhat muddled mix and lack of real edge or excitement. Repeated listens failed to generate any sense of engagement with the tracks and the album as a whole seemed to plod along between dynamic highs and lackluster off tempo parts. The vocals added little to any sense of excitement, and served more to tie together the instrumental parts rather than propel the tracks forward. A album of good musicianship, but yet one that is overall forgettable rather than memorable. Try it for yourself, stream and buy Grams at the link below.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Opollo: Of A Distorted Star

Of A Distorted Star is the new album from Polish artist/producer Opollo, aka Jarek Leskiewicz. the ten tracks are dense assemblages of ingenious synth pads, atmospheric textures and subtle noise. More sonically engaging than an ambient recording and more ambient than a melodic based instrumental album, this record defies genres with a series of experimental soundscapes that soar and twist effortlessly in a total aural experience. Stream and download Of A Distorted Star at the link below.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Discolor Blind: Long Vivid Dream

Long Vivid Dream is the debut EP from Montreal duo Discolor Blind. The five tracks are dark synthpop tinged rock, with an understated noise and lo-fi sonic patina. The tracks feature some nice original sounds, interesting arrangements and unexpected heavy passages, all the while keeping an overall atmospheric sound. Complex but yet engaging, this is a debut to be reckoned with and is a definite must have. Watch the video for EP track Bland and Grey, then stream and buy Long Vivid Dream at the link below.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Obleeks: The Obleeks

Milwaukee indie label Good Land Records brings us the debut S/T album from Chicago power pop band The Obleeks. The ten tracks have a radio ready sheen with crisp production and solid songwriting. The vocals are reminiscent of Tom Petty, but comparisons stop there, with the varied and extremely interesting instrumental performances standing on there own. A vary solid debut album that showcases a band we should expect much more good music from. Stream and buy The Obleeks at the link below.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Martin Månsson Sjöstrand: Wonderland Wins

Wonderland Wins is the new album from Swedish artist/producer Martin Månsson Sjöstrand. Regular readers of this blog will be familiar with his work in Dog Paper Submarine and This Heel. The ten tracks on this new album showcase an artist that is at the height of his powers, with superb songwriting and arrangements. The album delivers a wondefully original take on post-punk, lo-fi and indie rock, with some glitchy elements thrown in for good measure. A fine album all around and a definite must have. Stream and buy Wonderland Wins at the link below.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Goodbye Honolulu: No Honey

No Honey is the new EP from Toronto indie rock band Goodbye Honolulu. The 5 tracks blend elements from grunge, garage and post punk into a solid EP, with a strong college radio feel. Nice varied dynamics propel the songs along and help keep the interest high. This is an extremely well crafted album, that marks a band that is fully developed in their songwriting, arrangement and production skills. A definite must have. Stream and buy No Honey at the link below.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Ryan Herrick: Sagitta

Sagitta is the new EP from Chicago singer/songwriter Ryan Herrick. The six tracks are alt-folk pieces that channel elements of blues, folkrock and Americana. What immediately strikes one, is just how heavy this album is. Though based on acoustic instruments, the sheer power that is transmitted through the tracks is staggering. Herrick's voice is strong and compelling, the songwriting inspired and the musicianship is at a very high level. Taken together, this is one of the best albums we have heard this year. An absolute must have. Stream and buy Sagitta at the link below.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Kabinett Dod: Kathiztan

Swedish indie label Peter Out records always sends cool stuff and this time they sent something really special. Kabinet Dod was a band in the first wave of Swedish punk being active from 1979-1991. In that time the band never released any records, insisting that their music must be experienced live. However, they did record their live shows and now Peter Out brings us Kathiztan, a compilation of live recordings by the band from 1979-1981. Almost 40 years later these recordings have a rawness and intensity that showcases a unique punk rock band that is still relevant and needs to be part of everyone's collection. A definite must have. Stream and download Kathiztan at the link below.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Hayato Takeuchi: EP

EP is the aptly titled Bearsuit Records debut from Japanese artist Hayato Takeuchi. The 5 tracks are original instrumental music that melds electronic, synthpop and guitar elements into a unique sound, that is both engaging and compelling. In many ways this EP could be viewed as a new form of classical music for a world removed to the far future. Only rarely do we have a chance to listen to music so original, that it defies existing genres, while at the same time embracing them. This is a work that should be in everyone's collection. Stream and buy EP at the link below.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Chip Ratliff: Resilient

Resilient is the new album from Chicago's Chip Ratliff. The eight tracks are a master class in everything funky. The album channels all the best influences from the likes of Sly Stone and George Clinton, with doses of Prince's rock sense. This was a very difficult review to write...because how the fuck could anyone possibly sit still listening to this album. Multiple dancing induced typos later, all we can say is, absolutely get this album or call 911, because you must be dead. Stream and buy Resilient at the link below.

Monday, September 4, 2017

My Favorite Things: Fly I Will, Because I Can

Fly I Will, Because I Can is the new album from Brooklyn dreampop band My Favorite Things. Though ostensibly a quintet, the band is mainly an artistic vehicle for singer/songwriter Dorothea Tachler. The twelve tracks are lilting dreampop, with requisite doses of reverb, healthy amounts of atmospheric instruments and vocals, but also well placed elements of folk and bohemian influences. An altogether nice album, though the mix does leave things a bit muddy in spots. Stream and buy Fly I Will, Because I Can at the link below.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Ric Gordon: Standing Here

Standing Here is the new EP from artist, producer and indie label honcho Ric Gordon. Gordon calls the EP the best recording of his career. A strong statement from an artist who has released 16 albums and EPs under various monikers and produced another 26 for other artists. The EP is a superlative work of indie/folkrock and alt-country, that with five "A" tracks and no filler, will stand as one of the best singer/songwriter records of the year. A definite must have. Stream and buy Standing Here at the link below.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Granfalloon: Down There For Dancing

Down There For Dancing is the debut album from UK artist Granfalloon, aka Richard Lomax. The eight tracks are tasty dreampop/neo-folk that are melodic and compelling. The music draws the listener in deep with vocals  that engage at a very personal level. Melodic and flowing, the album washes over you like a warm blanket on a cool night, comforting and safe, but not imposing or overly complex. This is an album that has a perfectly enjoyable vibe and a special sense of serenity to the overall feel. Stream and buy Down There For Dancing at the link below.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Winter Witches: Train/Water 7"

The Train/Water 7" is the debut release from Australian duo Winter Witches. The two tracks are dark, intimate and ethereal, with orchestral textures melded to a dream pop aesthetic. The duo take a minimalist approach to arrangement, leaving enough space that each part, whether vocal or instrumental, rises to an important component of the sonic experience. This 7" is beautiful and engaging. Stream and buy Train/Water at the link below.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Neverending Delays: Muzak For The Masses

Muzak For The Masses is the debut album from Polish duo Neverending Delays. The four tracks deliver a lush synth/guitar fusion of dreampop, with ambient influences. The album has wonderful melodic lines that lead effortlessly from track to track, with adventurous beats, phrasing and arrangements. Eschewing cliche sounds for copious amounts of originality, this is an album that showcases strong musicianship and truckloads of talent. We can't wait to hear more. A definite must have. Stream and buy Muzak For The Masses at the link below.

Monday, August 28, 2017

American Anyman: Flag Burner

New York collective American Anymen are back with, Flag Burner, an inspired EP of protest music that captures the angst, frustration and horror of now living in a facist America. The three tracks of folk-punk are lyrically stunning, saying what the mindless trump (purposely not capitalized) supporters need to hear, a focused and eloquent fuck you. True protest music is a limiting genre for an artist, as its shelf life is short and only stands while timely relevant. It is a testament to any artist with the balls to sacrifice music to make a specific political statement. This EP is a absolute must have. Stream and download Flag Burner for free at the link below.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Crush: No Easy Way

Austrian indie Wilhelm Show Me The Major Label, brings us No Easy Way, the new EP from Crush. The three tracks are 60's Mersey Beat reminiscent pop songs that twang of 12 string, smooth melodies and catchy hooks. This EP perfectly captures 60's pop styling and definitely leaves the listener wanting much more. Stream and buy No Easy Way at the link below.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Dave Wesley: Laranja Swadhisthana 67_5 - EPv1

Laranja Swadhisthana 67_5 - EPv1 is the catchy titled new ambient EP from the now Porto based Dave Wesley.  When ambient is done correctly, it can be transformative by providing a full orchestral experience, within the framework of a limited, focused soundscape and melodic structure. That is what one finds on this EP, superlative sonic renderings of grace, beauty and substance. Stream and buy  Laranja Swadhisthana 67_5 - EPv1 at the link below.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Exssex Muro, Numb Life

North Carolina's Sorry State Records, is a purveyor of hardcore, punk and garage excellence. Their latest release is Numb Life, the new album from Essex Muro. The nine tracks are devastating hardcore punk full of  grungy back alley brawls and 2:30 am dives from the stage. This is punk the way it was meant to be, loud, fast and snotty. Stream and buy Numb Life at the link below.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Cut Surface: Compilation A

Austrian label Cut Surface has released a stunning compilation album featuring 20 of their artists. The tracks are sultry, fierce, industrial, post-punk, surf and psychedelic gems. This is a compilation where every track delivers up sonic goodness in huge portions. The perfect way for you to hear a lot of different bands and get the feel for the label's curation of artists. A definite must have. Stream and buy Compilation A at the link below.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Chuck: Frankenstein Songs for the Grocery Store

After five releases in a little over nine months, Brooklyn pop auteur Chuck, aka Charles Griffin Gibson, is calling it quits with his final album Frankenstein Songs for the Grocery Store. The 15 tracks rollick through an urban landscape painting sprightly, twangy and catchy indie pop songs that are captivating in their simplicity and presentation. A fine album by an artist that would be welcome to stay around a while. Watch the video for album track New Yorker, then stream and buy Frankenstein Songs for the Grocery Store at the link below.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Vukovar: The Clockwork Dance

The Clockwork Dance is the new two song single from UK band Vulovar. The two tracks are sultry post-punk with the title track having an eastern flair and mesmerizing drum beat. The second track is a live rendering that is a seven minute excursion into the band's Joy Divisionesque compelling live show.This is a fine band at their best. As a whole the two tracks are a nice followup to their album at the start of the year and wets our appetite for more. Watch the video and then stream and download The Clockwork Dance at the link below.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Astari Nite: Dreams of Majesty

Dreams of Majesty is the new EP from Miami band Astari Nite. The four tracks are 80's retro new wave goodness. With a sound drawn from bands like Depeche Mode, Human League and The Cure, this EP sounds more like a throwback than an homage, with a strong dance beat, atmospheric vocals and a sound that is resplendent in all it's 80's glory. This EP is not a new take on an old theme, but is rather a nostalgic remake for those that missed the original time. Watch the video for the track Lovesick, then stream and buy Dreams of Majesty at the link below.