Spotlight: This Week’s 10 Most Notable Artists – 7/7/12
Oh, ‘ello, gov’nor! Oh, burn on the UK. Actually, burn on Philly. It’s still a scorcher out there. I don’t think I’ll make it through the weekend, so it’s my dying wish that you share these songs in memory of me.
Was that at all convincing? Doubt it. But I don’t need to convince you to listen because you know you want to and I never (I hope) disappoint.
1. Noosa – “Mirrors in the Moonlight”/Noosa EP
Five hundred words on paper to tell you that I’m here… I’m never going nowhere until I hear you say I’m yours…but your heart is armed…Yes, I’ll admit it: I’m a freaking sap. Nature is at fault for my watery eyes. Blame my feminine hormones, but there are few songs that make love relevant in the eyes of a realist. No matter how you discuss it, it’ll be a mushy gushy mess, but a song that resonates the deep longing to love and nurture (as opposed to receiving and/or being in love) should be noted. There’s been much comparison to Lana Del Rey when it comes to Noosa and as much as a compliment as that may be, I won’t even go there. Noosa is Noosa and although her sound is reminiscent of airy voice Feist, funky Del Rey, and charming Sia, Noosa holds her own with the distinct line up on her self-titled EP, available on iTunes.
2. Burning Jet Black - “Magazine Girl”/The Modern Egotist
Oh yes, can you say amaaaazzzinngg? These gritty, sexy boys give rock something to be proud of. Drums, bass, and grrrreat raw, manly vocals. They are self-released and oozing with authenticity. Move over Campbell’s, BJB is mmm…mmm good! They’re the Strokes meets the Foo Fighters after a few shots with the Rolling Stones. I dig ‘em like a grave keeper on a Sunday. The Modern Egotist is available for download over at bandcamp. Name your price and open your ears to one of the most tantalizing rock experiences of the year.
3. The Royalty - “Bartender”/Lovers
This indie-band from El Paso, Texas has been described as a “dreamy ’60′s soundscapes…with an aggressively talented female front…Like Amy Winehouse went on holiday with Vampire Weekend” by MTV, but I like to keep it simple sometimes and say they’re damn good. Their debut full-length album Lovers was released in earlier this year in May and “Bartender” is the first track on this soulful-rock album. Stop the chatter, darken the room, and put the spotlight on your musical fantasy lead singer. You cannot resist the shimmy and shake of this fast paced, sexy track.
4. The Nouvellas – “Never Go Home”/Never Go Home EP
These feisty ladies make you want to hitch a ride down south with a banjo on your knee. Clap your hands and tilt you hats, it’s time for a line dance! In all seriousness, there’s an irresistible country swagger to this remorseful track. What’s a better way to express regret and loneliness than through a rocking twist of sound? The Nouvellas are NYC based and are prepping the release of their EP July 10th. You can catch them playing at Union Pool on Thursday July 12th alongside Daddy Long Legs, Minerva Lions, the Waivers, Fletcher C. Johnson Band, Nicole Atkins and DJ Josh Styles. But catch it while you can; a baby’s on the way for one of the members which means this is the last show for a long time.
5. Atlas Genius – “Back Seat”‘/Through the Glass EP
Oh yes, this is it! My JAM. Yes, it’s cap lock worthy. It may even be exclamation point worthy. JAM! Yep, that felt good. You know what else feels good? The sound of “Back Seat” through your speakers. This Australian indie rock band is sure to cause you to do an embarrassing stroll on your way to work. I admittedly had a moment as this funk-pop melody trickled from my ear buds and seeped into my skin. I might’ve popped my shoulders and did a dance similar to chicken movement. But when it’s that good, it’s that good. All the oh’s and ah’s are enough to keep you occupied. This track is worthy of a Gossip Girl playlist. Don’t front, that show has awesome taste in music…Yeah, I said it.
6. Sick Figures - “Never Change”/Two Ghosts
Maybe I’m a weirdo, but as this song speeds up, I start feeling like snapping my fingers and shouting oompa! Yes, I’m the only one, but nevertheless, “Never Change” by the Sick Figures is a new track from their sophomore release Two Ghosts. This album deals with “a morbid tale of two lovers whose affair will not end in death,” so if you’re looking for a pick me up, don’t look here… I’m just kidding. Depressing or not, this album is awesome sauce, where the only expectation is the continuity of awesomeness. Yeah, you read that right. It’s so nice I had to say awesome twice.
7. Work Drugs – “Pluto”/Absolute Bearing
I think I was ten seconds into this song before I decided this track deserved a spot on the list. “Pluto” is an ultra-smooth, disco track. Like bell bottoms and afros, this genre is making a comeback, sparkles and all. You can deny your attraction to the retro beat, but someday on a Tuesday you’ll find yourself in tube socks jamming in a one-man Soul Train line. With the jazzy sensations of a Kenny G-esque saxophone and dreamy soft groove vocal. “Pluto” is featured on the upcoming album Absolute Bearing, due out July 10th on Bobby Cahn records.
8. Log Across The Washer - “Shredding Heads Of Baby Dolls”/Welcome to the Afternoon
Log Across The Washer is a mystery. Portland based and eclectic, Log Across The Washer is a collage of sounds and clips, layered by sixties pop-jazz vocals comparable to the Beatles. Think “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” meets indie-electro layered sound. Despite the freakish title (baby dolls are creepy enough, let alone shredding their heads) this track has an interesting combination of creative construction that doesn’t freak you out. Rather, it pulls you in and offers a nostalgic feel as well a new age wave.
9. The Ludlow Thieves – “Tomorrow I’ll Be Gone”/The Ludlow Thieves EP
This is yet another NYC band, rocking it up with an eighties vibe. There truly is a Rod Stewart vocal resemblance of the Ludlow Thieves, but with an edgier flare. “Tomorrow I’ll Be Gone” has a Phil Collins-you’ll-be-in-my-heart-ish feel, which I can respect in terms of its epic singularity, but it’s charming in its own right. The slew of instrumentals and enthralling vocals suspend across time zones. The Ludlow Thieves are one of a handful of bands that can reach generations. You’ll appreciate them as much as your parents would… In that not so awkward but kinda-cool-that-I-can-put-this-track-on-and-not-have-to-talk-to-you way. Besides, any band that describes themselves as “the energy of roaring lions and lovemaking llamas channeled through a gospel singer from Iowa, the indigenous rhythmic flare of Manhattan, and a guitarist’s tongue…” deserves any and all respect from any audience. FREE download of their EP here.
10. Woods – “Cali In A Cup”/Bend Beyond
“Cali In A Cup” sounds like sunshine with lead singer’s Jeremy Earl’s falsetto. The rural composition is unexpected because of metropolitan title. It’s just one track featured from the seventh album from the Woods, and it will be available August 14th on limited 7″. Bend Beyond has been described as the darkest effort from the Woods band. This Brooklyn group is a veteran in the indie world, and trust that their new approach will garner as much respect and support as their previous albums. The folk-pop-rock sound is bound to please. So, shallow it up and groove to the rustic melodies or you can delve into the dark, depressing lyrics that are heart wrenchingly good… I’ll opt for the shallow; it’s too hot to think.