Before we get going on today’s Fresh Tracks mix, we would like to give our condolences to the victims of the catastrophic earthquake/tsunami in Japan last Friday. The videos we’ve seen on TV and the web, plus images in print, are almost impossible to comprehend. If you would like to contribute any amount to the relief efforts in northeastern Japan, we always recommend sending donations to the American Red Cross or text 90999 for an automatic ten-dollar donation.
In celebration of SXSW‘s 25th Anniversary, which is happening all this week in Austin, Texas, we’re putting out a number of post mixes highlighting some of our most recommended Bands To See at SXSW 2011. In this first SXSW mix, listen to bands we recommend you check out if you happen to be in Austin for the festivities. And, see Friday’s Fresh Tracks mix – it’s a not-to-miss mix, and features some other highly recommended artists performing this week at the world’s largest and longest-running music fest and conference – SXSW.
The build-up to The Strokes’ new LP, Angles, out March 22nd, (and streamable from their website) has been just crazy, and fans have had a limited opportunity to hear tracks from the album, seeing that there are no album streams out there that we know of. Until last Friday, the band had only officially released one track, “Under Cover of Darkness,” and premiered the song, “Life is Simple in the Moonlight,” on Saturday Night Live earlier this month. But late last week, The Strokes released two more tracks, “Taken For A Fool” and “Machu Picchu.” Pre-order Angles on CD and vinyl via Amazon.
Fresh Tracks From Here We Go Magic, and SXSW Showcasers Generationals and The Dodos
The Brooklyn indie band Here We Go Magic will release The January EP on May 10th, featuring leftover songs from the studio sessions for their LP, Pigeons. Plus, New Orleans‘ garage rock band Generationals’ will release their sophomore LP, Actor-Caster on March 28th, and The Dodos will drop their long-anticipated LP, No Colors, on April 12th. In fact, the first single from No Colors, “Black Nights,” has been a leading track on IRC for a few weeks now.
On Friday, Generationals and The Dodos will be performing during the same showcase at the Cedar Street Courtyard in Austin for SXSW.
“Hands in the Sky” – Here We Go Magic from The January EP – out May 10th
– Generationals from (Exclusive MP3 version only on Amazon) – out March 28th
No Colors – April 12th– The Dodos from
Plan for Yuck’s SXSW Shows to Be Filled To Capacity
Last month, IRC featured Chicago rising indie band Yuck in the Bands to Watch in 2011 series. In the past couple of weeks, yet another single from Yuck’s debut album has been hitting the blogs and music sites. At this rate, the entire track listing of the band’s recently released, self-titled LP, is going to end up a “web hit,” if you will. The latest track making the rounds, and hearting in the Hype Machine, looks to be the sweet lo-fi track, “Get Away.” After listening to Yuck’s debut, we spotlighted them last month in a Bands To Watch in 2011 post.
Yuck are scheduled to play three shows – Club Deville, Stubb’s and Kiss & Fly – this week at SXSW in Austin, and we can guarantee they’ll be packed, if not sold out. Checked the official date and time for Yuck’s SXSW shows.
More Than Cold Canadian Air Comes Out of Fargo
One of the best indie debut albums of 2010, in our books (Q: Where is that playlist mix? A: It’s in the works), was Secret Cities‘ spectacular LP, Pink Grafitti (vinyl edition). In fact, just hearing that the band were already prepping the release of a sophomore LP, Strange Hearts, for sometime this summer, was enough to spur us to go back and spin Pink Grafitti again – it’s that good. If this is your first introduction to the band, “Crime Love,” the first single from the new LP, might be all you need to get hooked into buying Pink Grafitti. Either way, you’re probably going to hear more about Secret Cities this year, as we can spot a break-out band in-the-making when we see one. And, hey, how often is it that we get anything good coming from Fargo, North Dakota? Still, in the beautiful big town you never hear about, Secret Cities are the shit right now for the local indie scene, and we can’t thank them enough for exporting their goods to the rest of the country. The mayor should declare the release date of Strange Hearts, March 22nd, as “Secret Cities’ Day” and give the boys the keys to the city. We’re sure if that really happened in the span of a week, it would get some press coverage.
Secret Cities will perform at Lambert’s in Austin on Saturday, March 18th in a showcase set with other notable artists like Botany, Callers and Wires Under Tension.
Natural Child and The Strange Boys Release Split Single
As part of the Scion A/V Garage 7″ Series, two of our favorite modern southern garage rockers, The Strange Boys and Natural Child, recently got together to record this split single. Living up to their namesake, Texas’ Strange Boys created “American Radio,” an audio collage that features clips of everything from jazz and bluegrass, to Delta blues and funk with a couple of incomprehensible voice recording samples for a nearly five-minute long sonic tour de force. But just before you throw your hands up and say, ‘what’s the point?” you realize that the whole thing is a clever accurate portrayal of the mish-mash of musical styles that have come from the American South.
On the much shorter track, “The Jungle,” Nashville‘s Natural Child present a stripped-down, sing-along jem with unified voices and warm acoustic strumming. The nostalgic lyrics call upon iconic American images, like boxcar travelers and 1980s optimism. The only thing we don’t like about this track is that it just suddenly stops at a place where it sounds like the song is prematurely cut off. But, we checked to make sure, and that’s the way they released it. Hmm…
“American Radio” – The Strange Boys from Scion A/V Garage 7″ Series (2011)
The Strange Boys will be playing shows at The Mohawk Patio and The Bat Bar in Austin this week for SXSW. Check their times here.
“The Jungle” – Natural Child from Scion A/V Garage 7″ Series (2011)
Natural Child will be performing at The Mohawk Patio.
Guards Cover Vampire Weekend, Phil Cook Goes Solo, White Denim Drop New Single, The White Wires’ Question
In preparation for another edition of IRC’s mix series, Indie Cover Songs, we thought you might be interested to hear this recent release from the band Guards putting their own spooky spin on Vampire Weekend‘s “Taxi Cab.” Plus, Megafun guitarist Phil Cook shows off his slide guitar skills in this nice little instrumental from his upcoming debut solo album under the moniker, Phil Cook & His Feat. Is there a joke in there somewhere? Perhaps only his closest friends would know (even though it might be easier to guess if it was “feet”). Moving on, the psychedelic rock band White Denim will drop their fourth album, D, on May 24th via Downtown Records. The first single, “Drug,” from D is a bit more mellow, but somehow rugged at the same time. Also, the Ottawa, Canada punk pop band The White Wires just released this single, “Did You Forget My Name?” based on a bad dream the guitarist had one night.
“Ballad of a Hungry Mother” – Phil Cook & His Feat from Phil Cook & His Feat – No Known SXSW Shows