Nashville-based alternative rock duoCITYSILOS have harnessed an effortlessly cool vibe in their latest single “Give It To Me Straight.” Also known as Chris and Kristen Butler, they work together as husband and wife to create a track that is as catchy as it is full of vulnerability and angst. Kristen’s voice is reminiscent of Paramore’s Hayley Williams with her powerful range and ability to bring a certain raw emotion to the song. What makes this song stand out is that it is something you can dance around your room to, but also relate to it’s revelations about being in a dead-end relationship. “Give It To Me Straight” is just a sliver of what’s to come — their debut full-length album Happy Thoughts is to be released on August 30th.
Los Angeles-based Meg Myers brings her own colorful spirit to this cover of Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill.” The original version is known for its major success in 1985 and a music video that featured a contemporary dance routine performed by Bush herself. On the other hand, Myers’ version showcases the artistic talents of 2,130 children, and the artwork paired with her distinctly inimitable vocals creates quite an enchanting combination. “Running Up That Hill” is a song that means a lot to many people and Kate Bush is beloved in the world of music. But, in spite of that pressure, Myers manages to stay true to the original as well as produce her own creative vision. It is clear that this song is near and dear to Myers as well, and she embraces that completely.
The video itself is a massive creative feat – it took a chance on over two thousand children to be able to convey the story that the song is trying to tell. The vibrant imagery of a winged Myers flying through space stands out in a way that really showcases childlike wonder and imagination. The amount of work put into the video shows how a fully formed concept can evolve into one of the most beautiful music videos that I have seen in a long time.
Be sure to check out the video, and keep up with Meg Myers here.
Wild Wing’s fourth record New Futures is the epitome of eclectic rock-and-roll. Growing up together in Los Angeles, band members David Gantz, Max Garland, Zach Miller, and Theo Cohn continue to display an unbreakable bond as well as showcase their musical talents as a bonafide rock band.
The record completely redefines the rock genre by including punk, pop, and electronic influences that as jarring as they are the perfect match for each individual song. From the electronica instrumental of “Futures (Intro)” to the screamo sounds of “Triumph” to the rock-and-roll anthem of “Momma’s Got a Brand New Bag” to the country twang of “Ontario,” each song takes you to a whole other place, which is essentially what makes Wild Wing so wild in their approach to music. Their openness towards experimentation allows for New Futures to capture the essence of true rock-and-roll.
Be sure to check out New Futures for yourself, and keep up with Wild Wing here.
Indie rock band Wrinkles puts an emphasis on carefree fun in the music video for their latest single, “Thunderstorm.” In the depths of a Montana winter, we see the five-piece band put their house to the test as they gather every blanket, pillow, tool, and instrument possible to create some sort of musical fortress. The video has a very exciting, TV-sitcom vibe that focuses on who Wrinkles is as a band and highlights their talent as well as their obvious camaraderie. While this is a lighthearted video, it shows the importance of a band’s strong connection not only as musicians, but as friends. As a result, the video – directed by Kendall Rock – perfectly matches the upbeat and catchy qualities of the track.
“Thunderstorm” is the first single off Wrinkles’ sophomore album Other Days, which comes out on August 14th. Check out the music video, and keep up with the band here.
Other Days Tour Dates
8.7 – Missoula
8.16 – Helena
8.17 – Bozeman
8.22 – Seattle
8.23 – Vancouver
8.24 – Bellingham
8.25 – Portland
8.26 – Corvallis
8.27 – Eugene
8.28 – San Francisco
8.29 – Oakland
8.30 – Los Angeles
8.31 – San Diego
9.1 – Phoenix
9.2 – Tucson
9.3 – El Paso
9.4 – Marfa
9.5 – Austin
9.6 – Houston
9.7 – Baton Rouge
9.8 – New Orleans
9.9 – Memphis
9.10 – Nashville
9.11 – Athens
9.12 – Asheville
9.13 – Richmond
9.14 – Baltimore / DC
9.15 – Philadelphia
9.16 – Asbury Park
9.17 – New York
9.18 – Amherst
9.19 – Albany
9.20 – Montreal
9.21 – Toronto
9.22 – Hamilton
9.23 – Detroit
9.24 – Chicago
9.25 – St Louis
9.26 – Kansas City
9.27 – Omaha
9.28 – Denver
9.29 – Ft Collins
9.30 – Bozeman
Composer and performer Thomas Kozumplik leads a 16-member orchestra in a riveting performance of instrumental artistry with his latest project, Child of the Earth.
“Mother Nature (la inocencia pérdida)” is quite an attention-grabbing opening — with the cacophony of various bells and drum beats and piano chords that doesn’t quite allow you to figure out where the song is headed —mirroring the beauty and unpredictability of Mother Nature itself. Then it shifts with the use of heavy percussion and ominous vocal work that creates an intense juxtaposition to the first few minutes. As the composition comes to an end, it settles back down, bringing back the playful xylophone, plus some piano chords and vocals that ring with finality.
The next two tracks are the small but sweet filling between the two thick pieces of bread in this orchestral sandwich. “Mysticism (Carillon) resembles a wind chime in its breezy tone. It is the most serene of the tracks, bringing about a certain peace and calm that only chimes can do. “A Journey (baile de los tambores)” goes back to the more chaotic sound of “Mother Nature.” The intense yet catchy drum beats are a mirror opposite to the quiet romance of “Mysticism.”
“Beauty and its Passing (cuando habíamos podido amar)” is quite a triumphant ending to this large-scale orchestra. It is a more subdued work in a way that is more contemplative. For most of the song, the signature heavy percussion is not present, putting piano and marimba at the forefront, as a way of bringing the intensity of the orchestra to a gentle close.
Child of the Earth is an incredible feat. His work and artistry certainly speak for themselves — Kozumplik manages to create something entirely new and interesting, allowing listeners to disappear into a world of magical music.
Be sure to check out the album, and keep up with Kozumplik here.
Ohio-based band The Shootouts’ debut album Quick Draw is the ultimate throwback to the age of honky-tonk in America. Every detail, from the lyrics to the vocals to the instruments to the album cover art, hearkens back to the good old days of classic country music. The band, consisting of Ryan Humbert (lead vocals, acoustic guitar), Brian Poston (electric & acoustic guitar), Ryan McDermott (bass), Dylan Gomez (drums, percussion) and Emily Bates (harmony vocals), create a wholesome album with heart that is sure to make their listeners feel as if they have travelled back to a much simpler time.
With the first track, “Cleaning House” jumps right in with a toe-tapping ditty that’s as fun as it is metaphorical. Other tracks like “Who Needs Rock & Roll” and “Reckless Abandon” have the same carefree, catchy vibe that almost guarantees its ability to get stuck in your head. They’re short, sweet, and incredibly charming. Even a song called “Alimony” is full of charm and humorous lyrics:
Alimony, oh alimony, I thought I bought steak and it was old bologna. Me oh my, oh goodness sake, I’m paying for my mistake.
There’s a fair share of the album’s softer side with songs such as “California to Ohio,” “If We Quit Now, “Lonely Never Lets Me Down,” and “Losing Faith in Being Faithful.” These songs are pretty and emotional, bringing us back to traditional country ballads that are often hard to find in the current age of pop-country.
At first glance, Quick Draw may seem like just another country album, but it is entirely its own entity. The lyrics are sharp and well-written, the instrumentals are skillful, and even if this isn’t your kind of music, it’s quite an enjoyable listening experience.
Be sure to check out Quick Draw, which is out now, and keep up with The Shootouts here.
Acclaimed artist Allman Brown captures intimate love and all its facets in his sophomore album Darling, It’ll Be Alright. Brown has created an album that is so smooth and captivating in both vocals and lyrics that you find yourself easily slipping into a constant loop of his music for hours.
The album opens up with the effortless soft pop of “Home,” a heartfelt track that is as catchy as it is uplifting. The title track, along with “Dust & Heat” and “Bury My Heart” have a similar positivity to them that feels genuine and sounds like summertime. On the flip side, songs like “Crazy Love” and “Shapes in the Sun” delve deeper into the sultrier aspects of Brown’s music. It is reminiscent of fellow British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran’s many hits in the unique vocal melodies and edgy, sharp guitar riffs.
Brown also delves into more somber ballads with “Hurting,” “Waiting for Something to Believe In,” and “Lonely Hearts, Los Angeles.” In particular, “Lonely Hearts, Los Angeles” stands out as a track that discusses the solitude of being in a big city, but still manages to be romantic in its depiction of something as gloomy as being alone – a difficult feat. Another standout was the final track, “Natasha,” which is a perfect example of Brown’s ability to emphasize the details of a loving relationship as well as highlight the beautiful simplicity of the song itself:
I bought you a Neil Young CD, You made me try different food, Showed me that being angry is not the same as being strong, My darling, my darling one, This is you love song.
Much like how Brown comes across in his music, Darling, It’ll Be Alright wears its heart on its sleeve. It is deeply romantic, heartbreaking, optimistic, and incredibly honest. To put it simply, this is what passionate music sounds like.
Be sure to check out the album, and keep up with Allman Brown here.
New Orleans-based indie pop band RoyalTeeth manages to meld vulnerability and a catchy beat together in their latest single “Rivalry.” The track highlights the ever-present rivalry between change and constancy — the inner turmoil of deciding whether to move on or not to move on. The lead vocals of Gary Larsen and Nora Patterson, paired with guitarist Thomas Onebane and drummer Josh Hefner, creates a sound that allows the music to take hold of their listeners in an emotional way. The chorus stands out as the perfect example of how RoyalTeeth can show off their own musical style— deeply honest lyrics to a toe-tapping beat so that it gets stuck in your head:
Baby I’m not wasting no more time,
Drag my heart down one too many times,
Hold me steady give me one more try,
I made up my mind, I’m wasting no more time.
Be sure to check out Royal Teeth’s upcoming album Hard Luck, and keep up with them here.
Gina Été’s latest single “Im Rhy” comes with a music video that perfectly encapsulates the bittersweet feelings that come with change. The song, which is sung in Swiss German, is highlighted by the shadow puppet artistry of Barbara Steinitz and Peter Bräunig.. The puppets seem to tell the story of Été herself – a paper girl alone in a big city finds herself standing on a bridge, wanting to jump back into her past. The use of the unique, beautiful art of puppetry manages to make this particular video stand out among the sea of over-produced pop music videos. “Im Rhy” is heartbreakingly honest, and the poignant ambiance of both the song and video create an experience that most of us can relate to.
Be sure to check out the video, and keep up with Gina Été here.