In a post on Touché Amore’s website, the Southern California hardcore band wrote: “We entered the studio this week with producer Brad Wood (Sunny Day Real Estate, mewithoutYou, Smashing Pumpkins) to record our third album.”
If there’s anyone that can make Touché Amore’s already-tight sound more fully-formed, Wood sounds like the guy, at least based on his credentials. The band also posted a video teaser for the album, which documents the group in the studio. With a 1:18 runtime, it wouldn’t be a stretch to assume that the video is one of the band’s new songs. Many of their previously-released tracks hover somewhere around that brief runtime.
Although it’s tough to believe for inhabitants of the colder corners of certain continents, summer has almost arrived in the Northern Hemisphere of this here Earth. While hordes of tank-clad bros and ladies are disco-ing out to the new Daft Punk album, other artists are releasing tracks that recall the bleakness of a stormy winter.
Simple, observational lyricism about daily life is one of most alluring aspects of The Front Bottoms’ sound. They punctuate that lyricism with drums and usually-acoustic guitars, but if you’re not paying attention to those nasally vocals, then you’re not giving The Front Bottoms a proper listen.
I may be biased because I just watched Sunshine yesterday, but space seems fucking scary*. It’s also probably pretty boring when you’re up there by yourself.
Commander Chris Hadfield, a Canadian astronaut working on the International Space Station, is evidence of the latter. The astronaut has been recording songs aboard the space station and releasing them on sites like Soundcloud and Reddit for a while now, and he’s got a nice voice and talent with the acoustic guitar (the musical instrument he brought with him on his journey to space).
“Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe” surpassed “Swimming Pools” and “Backseat Freestyle” to become the signature hit off of Kendrick Lamar’s good kid m.A.A.D. city. The song has already been rereleased in a remix format that featured a verse from non-vibe-killer Jay-Z, and the original track now has an accompanying music video.
In the clip, Kendrick and his crew attend a funeral with a tone as lively and jubilant as an Irish wake. There’s also a brief cameo from Mike Epps, who’s dressed as a priest. Epps mistakenly baptizes Kendrick in a pool full of liquor, which doesn’t look as pleasant as it sounds (although that was the point of the “Swimming Pools” song, I guess, right?).
One of the main reasons we all liked Pusha T in the first place was because he rapped on those hard-hitting, minimalistic Neptunes beats with The Clipse. Ever since he went solo and joined the G.O.O.D. Music Roster, the rapper has significantly expanded his production palette, taking on Young Chop’s “I Don’t Like” and other more elaborate styles.
“Numbers On The Boards,” a track off Pusha’s forthcoming My Name Is My Name LP, finds the rapper returning to that spare production style, although the beat comes courtesy of Kanye West and drastically differs from anything Pharrell’s made (and also everything Kanye’s made). It’s a catchy, glitch-heavy drum beat and Pusha raps over it with a crazed fervor that’s only intensified by the track’s video (in which his scrunched, angered faces indicate that he’s not kidding about anything he’s saying).
For Japanese readers or hardcore fans of Weezer/Allister, the following statement may be considered old news: Rivers Cuomo and Allister frontman Scott Murphy made a Japanese-language album. The album was released on iTunes in late March, and the band (called Scott & Rivers) posted its first single, “Homely Girl,” on YouTube in December. Consequence of Sound recently pointed to this album and this song for those that are not up-to-date on their Japanese-language music (Scott Murphy has released music in that language on his own before, but the Cuomo collaboration is relatively new). As that article explains, the fact that Cuomo recorded an album in Japanese is of little surprise. The artist has been obsessed with East Asian cultures ever since Pinkerton was released (e.g., “Goddamn you half Japanese girls / you do it to me every time“). More surprising is the fact that such a high-profile American musician was able to sneak out an album catered to an audience in a different country with relatively little press coverage. Oh, well. Rivers does stuff like that, you know.
On “Rocket Ships,” the new song from Talib Kweli’s forthcoming LP Prisoner of Conscious, the rapper accurately encapsulates the Facebook and Twitter feeds of many of my former friends in one simple line: “They saying that we need a revolution but their passion is reduced to all caps in a computer.” Too often social media sites are clogged with back-and-forth banter (between individuals with totally opposite, unchanging ideologies) that moves problems nowhere but backwards. I’m not sure if Talib Kweli does much more than express his passion through the microphone, but at least that reaches a larger audience and creates a more interesting discussion. Judging by the title of his new album, that’s what he plans to do with his new songs.
Kurt Vile’s video for “Never Run Away” is like the singer’s live show— there’s not much going on, but it’s great to watch. I suspect Vile’s music has something to do with that. It hooks you in, chugging along with intricate guitar loops and riffs. There’s something entrancing about his style, so much so that it doesn’t require over-the-top stage antics. It’s best when presented on its own.
A song that ends with its singer repeatedly screaming “I discovered I hate myself” is not what most consider party music. Unless, of course, you’re throwing a sympathy party.
That’s exactly what Aspiga do in the video for one of the tracks off their 2012 album Every Last Piece (the track is called “Welcome To The Sympathy Party”). In the clip, the band busts out the balloons, confetti and black attire necessary for such an occasion. A small, apathetic crowd looks on as Aspiga plays their brand of early emo pop punk. It’s not hard to figure out this group’s from New Jersey.