The San Francisco and Birmingham, UK-based Matthew Edwards and the Unfortunates are aptly named. On their debut LP, The Fates, they explore all manner of morose topics. Yet while the lyrical content of The Fates may be bleak, the music makes these saturnine musings delightful to listen to.
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Fans of ‘80s music, new wave in particular, need no introduction to Billy Idol. People all over the world are familiar with the man in large part for classics like “White Wedding”, but he’s not one content to ride on the coattails of his big successes in the ‘80s. Indeed, Idol has kept to making music, and has just released his latest collection of tunes, Kings & Queens of the Underground.
The Gromble takes its name from the ‘90s Nickelodeon TV show Aaahh!!! Real Monsters. Unsurprisingly, then, this California-based indie rock outfit has a sound that evokes that decade; these folks have clearly given Pinkerton a spin or ten. The band has found a way to elevate its sound beyond its seemingly simple pop roots with its recent recording of the song “Creepy Jr”, where it is joined by a string section. The video for this acoustic version of “Creepy Jr” was captured in the house of Elizabeth Palmer’s (background vocals) grandmother. The cozy environs prove to be a perfect place to capture the dulcet tones of the somewhat misleadingly titled “Creepy Jr”. Far from being creeped out, you’ll likely come out happy after viewing this fine performance.
Washington, D.C. guitarist Anthony Pirog just recently dropped his new LP, Palo Colorado Dream. Pirog has a degree in jazz studies, and while jazz is undoubtedly a part of his finely honed guitar technique, his compositional style often varies from track to track. Washington City Paper is right on the money when it said in its review of Palo Colorado Dream, “File it under ‘jazz’, but don’t expect it to rest there.” Now, you can watch a video of Pirog and his band performing “The New Electric”, a tune whose jazzy band interplay coalesces perfectly with the post-rock vibes of Pirog’s guitar. Both that and the song’s explosive finale bring to mind early Mogwai.
The Athens, GA-based Grand Vapids have one hell of an ominous teaser for their forthcoming studio album, Guarantees. The song, titled “Pale Hooves”, is built around a brooding riff that’s equal parts ‘90s indie and outlaw country. Cryptic lyrics like “Looks like death has finally given birth” add to the the tense mood of the music. On its own, it creates an intriguing mood; however, what the tune truly does is make one wonder about what’s to come from this young band.