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Tuesday, Jul 8, 2014
There's nothing lightweight about neo-shoegazers Lightfoils on their new album, Hierarchy.

There’s nothing lightweight about Lightfoils, not considering the heavy-lidded dream-pop the Chicago group creates on its new album Hierarchy. Sure, there are some atmospheric wisps of melody, mostly courtesy of Jane Zabeth’s vocals, but Lightfoils’ neo-shoegaze sound mostly tips the scales at the weightier end of the genre with their dense, swirling guitars and substantial rhythms. Premiering here on PopMatters, Lightfoils’ Hierarchy is out today via Saint Marie Records.


 


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Tuesday, Jul 1, 2014
“The entire control room is like a group of six-year-olds whose birthday is next week, you know, and there’s gonna be cake, there’s gonna be presents, their friends are gonna be there, and they just know its going to be great.”

Monica Dunford rides her bike to work. More than once in Particle Fever, the camera follows her along un-busy streets in her neighborhood, on the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, Switzerland, her head helmeted, her pants leg Velcroed. But as typical as she may look, Monica is not. She’s an experimental physicist, for one thing, and for another, she works at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). This is the place where everything changed. Everything. It’s the place where, on 4 July 2012, a dedicated company of scientists found the Higgs boson. Dunford records her thoughts at the time, one of several video-diary-like moments: “I don’t think I can describe the excitement,” she says, her hair pulled back, her hands in motion, and a fraction of the gigantic collider—chips and tubes and cables—overwhelming the background of the shot. “The entire control room is like a group of six-year-olds whose birthday is next week, you know, and there’s gonna be cake, there’s gonna be presents, their friends are gonna be there, and they just know its going to be great.”


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Tuesday, Jul 1, 2014
Anyone headed to the beach ought to consider giving "The Girls Are Here", the new single by Beautiful Small Machines, some heavy rotation.

“The Girls Are Here,” the newest single by the New York songwriting duo Beautiful Small Machines, brings one classic group to mind immediately from the outset: The Beach Boys. With this track, the duo of Bree Sharp and Don DiLego bring to mind all the summertime fun associated with that quintessential pop act, all the while adding their own unique dose of fun to the equation. However, despite the beachfront environs the song evokes, the initial inspiration for the song comes from the realm of late-night partying out in the city.


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Tuesday, Jul 1, 2014
Just in the time for the national holiday this week, PopMatters has the premiere of singer/songwriter Mackenzie Shivers' new song, the piano ballad "4th of July".

With the 4th of July coming in the next few days, there is no better time to spin “4th of July”, the new track by the New York City-based singer/songwriter Mackenzie Shivers. After graduating from Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music with a degree in music composition and theory, Shivers’ talents as a songwriter only grew, as evidenced by the delicate songwriting on this track. The gospel-inflected piano chords create a reflective mood that becomes all the more significant when one takes the song’s inspiration into account.


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Tuesday, Jul 1, 2014
The driving, garage-rock inspired "Black Pony" by the Nashville-based the Wans is available to stream exclusively on PopMatters.

Later this year, Nashville-based rock outfit the Wans are set to release their new LP, He Said, She Said. Lead singer and guitarist Simon Kerr says of the record, “I’m more proud of this record than anything I’ve done in my life. The songs are all the strongest songs I’ve ever written. The production and sounds are brilliant thanks to our producer, Dave Cobb, and our engineer, John Netti. I can’t forget Vance Powell who mixed it and Ed Spear who was assistant mix engineer. I’ve got pretty high expectation’s for this record and I’m so excited for people to hear it.


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