With the manic punk energy and zany humor of Bomb the Music Industry! at their best, Jake Simmons & the Little Ghosts stage an exceptionally interesting house party in “All My Friends Are Dead”, the newest music video from their forthcoming No Better LP. Although the tune’s title may give the impression that it’s a somber affair, based on the zany antics of a werewolf trying to open a bottle of Rolling Rock with his hands in the music video, you’re likely to find laughs than tears in this song.
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If one were to play a round of Jeopardy that involves completing the titles of famous records and the word “Unknown” came up, she’d likely pick Unknown Pleasures, Joy Division’s 1979 debut. That band, rather non-coincidentally, also comes to mind when the music of Morning Smoke comes through the speakers, particularly their latest single, “Unknown”. The music of Morning Smoke owes a great deal to post-punk’s biggest luminaries, Unknown Pleasures included. Whether or not “Unknown” is a tip of the cap to Joy Division only the band knows, but in the meantime these guys are certainly putting their own spin on classic post-punk stylings. With “Unknown”, there’s an added dimension of ‘90s alternative rock, that adds a murky layer to the song’s varied textural landscape.
In their press bio, the Brooklyn-based, Balkan-obsessed band Tipsy Oxcart are described as “channeling the spirit of 36 hour weddings to keep the crowds dancing until the sun comes up” with their music. The sounds of Eastern Europe are indeed alive and well with this vivacious young outfit. Their release of their latest outing, Upside Down, is imminent. To ready yourself for the bevy of sonic adventurism to be found on the record, you can stream the track “Homecoming” below. Like Tipsy Oxcart themselves, who take their name from an old Bulgarian folk tale, there’s a rich story behind the tune.
Having been featured on NPR Music’s World Cafe as an “Artist of the Week”, Spanish indie outfit Polock have already garnered attention from numerous online outlets for their undeniably catchy take on indie pop. Although they’ve often been likened to Phoenix—by this very publication, in fact—with their latest video, “Freak City”, Polock channel two other artists in particular. In terms of guitar tone, “Freak City” is all about that Nile Rodgers single-coil sound, the kind revived by Daft Punk on their 2013 monolith of retroism Random Access Memories. Additionally, the synths that form the backdrop for these guitars in the verses bring M83 to mind. All comparisons aside, though, “Freak City” is a good time in its own right, and a dead ringer for any ‘80s-themed parties.
Coming off of their 2014 record Stop Look and Listen, the Connecticut group Lines West lost their rhythm section. As far as things a band could lose, that’s a pretty big one, and this issue no doubt stymied some momentum. Not ones to let adverse circumstances trump their musical passions, Lines West kept onward with their goals, resulting in the soon-to-be-released Two of a Perfect Pair LP.
On this new outing, Lines West continue refining their brand of pop/rock, which is flecked with country and Americana influences throughout. Below you can watch the lyric video to “Perfect Pair” and get a taste of what’s to come from this rising group.