Baltimore’s Other Colors have been mining the well of “exploratory pop” music for the past few years, putting out home recordings driven by infectious melodies, vocal harmonies and atmospheric lo-fi production. Comprised of songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Will Ryerson on guitar and vocals, Pat Berberich on bass guitar and vocals, and Dan Whatley on keyboard, guitar and vocals, the group teamed up with members of Dope Body and Wye Oak for their latest album, Free Thoughts, now available digitally and on cassette via Genpop. Stream it below.
Other Colors play our co-presented show in Toronto tomorrow night alongside Jacco Gardner and company. Details HERE.
Next week, Keep Sleeping, the new cassette from Brooklyn-via-Florida based psych band Worthless will see its release on Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records. For those who don’t know, Worthless is the project of Curtis Godino, who’s name you may recall from the liquid light team Drippy Eye Projections, our previous show posters, or even the design of our latest sticker. We’re completely enamored with Curtis’ work, and his musical output is no different. After the jump, you can read our conversation with Curtis where he discusses the connections between his visual and aural art as well as the stories behind Worthless and Drippy Eye. You can also hear the stoned-out single off Keep Sleeping, entitled “Here Comes The Sun.”
If you’re into the whimsy throwback sounds of bands like Foxygen, then your ears will likely bask in the the oft-similar, lo fi psych of the Happy Jawbone Family Band. Ramshackle rock I guess you could call it. It’s like if fuckin’ Mick had been more like fuckin’ Keith, you know? Rock solid fuckers these here fellas are. Here’s “Fistful of Butter” off their new album Tastes the Broom, out January 29th on Mexican Summer.
Since their formation in 2005, Woods have continued to build on their unique brand of creepish campfire folk. What began as mostly as a bedroom project for lead singer Jeremy Earl to work on his songwriting has now evolved into a powerful force that helms much of the East Coast psych movement. And with each new release, Woods have, for lack of a better way of putting it, gotten better.
2009’s Songs of Shame brought the group out of Earl’s bedroom and into the light with stellar songwriting on songs like “Rain On” and extended jam cuts like “September with Pete.” Then in 2010 came the impressive At Echo Lake followed by last year’s Sun & Shade (featured on our list of top albums from 2011), which showcased Woods’ best collection of songs to date. That progression has now continued with the release of a new split LP with noisesmiths Amps for Christ, which comes out May 1 on vinyl and April 17 on CD via Shrimper. Two tracks from that collaborative LP have now been made available, and are streaming below. The first, “Wind Was the Wine” falls in line with the campfire creepishness side of the band, while “From Oatmeal to Buttermilk”—a collaborative track with Amps for Christ—showcases the group’s experimental side.
Since we’ve been revisiting cassettes on twitter today, what better way to keep it going that to dive into a digitized cassette rip, right? Well, earlier this year when Matt Mondanile (aka Ducktails) announced his Kickstarter project to fund his Killin the Vibe 12″ release, he offered those who pledged $30 or more a limited cassette featuring unreleased Ducktails songs. That cassette leaked over the weekend, and can now be streamed below. It features several typically lo fi songs from Ducktails, ripe with pitch shifts, hiss and all the other things that make tapes so great. You can purchase more of Ducktails music via his Bandcamp site.
San Francisco’s Rangers first came onto my radar last year with the release of the highly impressive debut LP Suburban Tours (and then again on the split Bored Fortress 7″ with Ducktails). That release featured a collection of infectuous radio nuggets steeped in the frothy haze of lo fi, tape-warped pop. Much of that sound carries over into the new LP, Pan Am Stories, but on this one those lo fi 80s pop grooves meld with with genuinely proggy undertones to push the songs into jammier, more expansive soundscape. That’s not surprising considering that the man behind it all, multi-instrumentalist Joe Knight, “grew up taking classical guitar lessons from a dude who claimed to have ‘toured with the Dead.'” Below, listen to one of the new tracks from Pan Am Stories, and then head over to No Not Fun to purchase it. This one will surely be making a run for our ‘best of 2011’ list.
Following a string of joint dates on the West Coast, lo-fi guru R. Stevie Moore and neo-glam rocker Ariel Pink team up on a new collaborative tune called “Dutch Me.” The song, which you can stream/download below, is expected to appear on an upcoming release titled Ku Klux Glam.
Pure X (formerly Pure Ecstasy) is a lo-fi psych-rock outfit hailing from Austin, TX. Led by singer/guitarist Nate Grace, the band dishes out mellow, reverb-drenched psychedelia that recalls New Jersey’s Real Estate at times. Over the last two years, they have put out a score of EPs, cassettes and 7″s but have now announced the release of a full record. Below, you can hear a new song off the group’s debut LP Pleasure to be released via Acephale next month. Also, check out the previously released track “Twisted Mirror.”