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by Brice Ezell

26 May 2015


When you know that A Yawn Worth Yelling has shared stages with Saint Motel and Relient K, you’ll likely be able to guess their brand of music: upbeat, youthful, and sun-drenched pop. Pair that guesstimation with A Yawn Worth Yelling’s home base of San Jose, California (in the state’s much-coveted Bay Area), and you’re even more on the money. As tunes like their latest single “Start Somewhere” make clear, these guys know how to capture the summertime vibe with aplomb. Twee uke strums are met by a Spoon-esque guitar riff that’s perfect for long drives along the coast—or, really, anywhere where summer is in the air.

“Start Somewhere” comes from A Yawn Worth Yelling’s forthcoming EP Play Pretend.

by PopMatters Staff

26 May 2015


The Mothmen is made up of a group of musicians from other earlier Mancheter bands, including the Durutti Column and Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias.

by Brice Ezell

22 May 2015


The Atlanda outfit Starbenders’ frontwoman Kimi Shelter has described their music as “blasphemous candy-coated bubblegum punk.” “Blasphemous” may be a bit hyperbolic, but there’s no doubt an irreverence to Starbenders’ music, one that’s delivered through a sarcastically sugar-sweet image. Case in point: “Diet Soda”, the B-side to the group’s upcoming “Powder” 7-inch release. Although the tune itself is sunny and catchy at times, particularly in the verses, Shelter really lets it wail in the chorus, with the attention-grabbing line “Am I still beautiful to you with this blood on my hands?” becoming the most distinctive feature of the track.

by Brice Ezell

22 May 2015


If based on their name you suspect that Gringo Star are a bit cheeky, you’re probably right. There’s a definite playfulness to the band’s brand of pop, as their latest singl e “Undone” makes plenty evident. The track, whose most distinctive features include plinked piano notes and a whistling melody, sounds like the kind of tune that would play well over a Wes Anderson film’s closing montage. As such, it’s utterly appropriate for the coming summer months; after one or two spins, you’ll be whistling along to “Undone” as you walk out into the sunny season.

by Brice Ezell

21 May 2015


Photo: Tim Ivy

Songs about breakups are a dime a dozen, but there’s a reason why that’s the case: it’s a powerful universal emotion that has a million different angles to it. No one song can be all-encompassing in its examination of the lovelorn state. Mississippi’s own the Shoe Birds know this, and for their take on heartbreak, “You Leave Me Blind” they craft an anthemic, driving pop/rock number that culminates in its sing-along ready chorus.

“You Leave Me Blind” can be found on the Shoe Birds’ forthcoming Southern Gothic LP.

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