Three years after the release of their debut album Clean Cuts, New York electronic trio House of Blondes are set to put out the follow-up Stranger Still this summer. As timing would have it, they have a shimmering new electropop track called “First of July” that we’re more than happy to premiere just in time for that symbolic start of a kid’s summer vacation.
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Featuring wicked falsetto singing reminiscent of Jimmy Somerville and a fun take on disco and funk similar to the Scissor Sisters, the Columbus, Ohio project Digisaurus combine elements both new and old to create a sound that’s both classic and contemporary. Helmed by musician James Allison, the band has just released their energetic and very catchy debut EP No More Room For Love, which we’re more than happy to present here at PopMatters.
If the name Eszter Balint doesn’t ring a bell, if you’re a regular viewer of Louie CK’s acclaimed series Louie, you’ll remember her as his character’s love interest Amia last season. In addition to being an actress, though—she’s appeared in films by Jim Jarmusch, Woddy Allen, and Steve Buscemi—the Hungarian-born Balint is an accomplished musician, and has played on albums by Marc Ribot, Angels of Light, and Swans. As you can tell, she’s clearly highly regarded by some of the biggest talents in two different mediums.
Her new album Airless Midnight is her first since 2004’s Mud, and PopMatters is pleased to premiere it here. Featuring appearances by Ribot and Sam Phillips, Balint, who plays guitar, mandolin, violin, and more, creates an eclectic collection of songs, but retains a remarkable consistent tone and theme throughout.
The credits Stephen Kalinich and Jon Tiven have racked up since the ‘60s and ‘70s are impressive enough to warrant a listen to their new album out of sheer respect. Poet Kalinich collaborated with the Beach Boys as early as the late-‘60s (co-writing the single “Little Bird” with Dennis Wilson), while Tiven has worked with everyone from legends the Rolling Stones and Alex Chilton to contemporary acts like Warpaint and Alabama Shakes.
Together, however, the prolific duo make awfully fine music on their own. Their latest album Each Soul Has a Voice is the result of songwriting sessions that yielded a whopping 700 tracks, and 14 of the pair’s best were chosen.
Toronto’s the Autumn Stones released their first album of lush, dreamy and sharply written pop tunes in 2011. That record, Companions Of The Flame, was so beguiling that it left some people (such as yours truly) wondering what the holdup was for album number two. Regarding that follow-up, singer and songwriter Cieran Megahey reports that, “we have a full-time horn player so our sound has a lot more character and nuance. Escapists has been four years in the making, which gave us lots of time to refine and shape it, and give the public something that really is our best work.”
"PopMatters is on a short summer publishing break. We resume Monday, July 6th.READ the article