Cotton Crown - Wretched Lie

Pow­er pop af­fic­i­na­dos might al­ready be fa­mil­iar with Owen Williams as the singer of The Tubs, who stood out ear­li­er this year with their ex­cel­lent Names 7". Cot­ton Crown is the name of his so­lo record­ing project whose de­but cass­in­gle in­hab­its much of the same awe­some­ness but en­rich­es its two old­school pop tunes with more of a goth and new wave aes­thet­ic adding just the right amount of low-lev­el cheesy­ness to el­e­vate, rather than wa­ter down the ma­te­r­i­al.

Vacation - Existential Risks and Returns

Once again stu­pid me was way too late notic­ing that a new record by Cincin­nati, Ohio's pop wiz­ards Va­ca­tion has hit the shelves via Sali­nas Records, re­peat­ed­ly prov­ing their knack for craft­ing re­fined jew­els of melod­ic noise at the in­ter­sec­tion of old­school nineties-style in­die rock, grace­ful pow­er- and noise pop. This shit is catchy as fuck with­out ever get­ting too for­mu­la­ic or pre­dictable. A rare breed these days and even more rarely does it ever come across as pow­er­ful and flaw­less­ly ex­e­cut­ed as here. An al­bum of twelve hits and ze­ro miss­es as for this group, "pret­ty good" sim­ply doesn't cut it.

Al­bum-Stream →

The Wind-Ups - Try Not To Think

No won­der this shit feels fa­mil­iar. The Wind-Ups is a new so­lo project of none oth­er than Jake Sprech­er of Ter­ry Malts and Smoke­screens fame. Much raw­er and loud­er than any of his oth­er groups have dared to sound re­cent­ly (al­beit not quite reach­ing ear­ly Ter­ry Malts lev­els of speed and fuzzy­ness), this at times sounds like a fu­sion of Ter­ry Malts' melod­ic­i­ty with slight­ly post punk-lean­ing garage groups like Tyvek or Par­quet Courts, while in oth­er mo­ments you can sense a breeze of The Spits, Ricky Hell or any­thing Reatard(s)-related. Yet when he goes all-in on pow­er pop, there are some un­de­ni­able british in­va­sion vibes em­a­nat­ing from his arrange­ments and com­po­si­tions.

Al­bum-Stream →

Tee-Vee Repairman - Patterns

Speak­ing of the dev­il… here's the lat­est ven­ture of the mighty Warttman em­pire and it's yet an­oth­er beau­ty to be­hold. Four rough gems of catchy garage punk and pow­er pop that, of all the Warttman-re­lat­ed groups, re­minds me most of R.F.M.C. and Sa­tan­ic To­gas, al­beit with a cer­tain south­ern rock (in this par­tic­u­lar case… south­ern what, ac­tu­al­ly??) bent bear­ing some sim­i­lar­i­ty to what you heard on ear­ly Sheer Mag EPs.

Al­bum-Stream →

The Smog - First Time, Last Chance

Let me be blunt here: You guys wan­na con­vince me to pay the equiv­a­lent of ~4,60€ for a dig­i­tal down­load of on­ly two songs, those two songs bet­ter be fuck­ing bril­liant. Luck­i­ly, fuck­ing bril­liant is ex­act­ly what these these two tracks by some Tokyo group are. Ka-ching!

T.L.B.M. & The Joy Toys - T.L.B.M. & The Joy Toys

For every pur­chase of this nice lit­tle cas­sette put out by our fa­vorite in­cor­po­rat­ed pur­vey­ors of in­no­v­a­tive dis­con­ti­nu­ity you al­so get a free fake ori­gin sto­ry. 1982 my ass, this is of course still the same dude who did this oth­er thing a while back. Though his newest out­put con­tains a bit less weird fuck­ery, it makes up for that with a lot more fuzz, more melodies and neg­a­tive ze­ro pro­duc­tion val­ues that sound just right to my ears.

Al­bum-Stream →

Ope - Tapes 1-3

Here's a holdover from last week by a sin­gle Mil­wau­kee dude (i guess) that i first planned to omit here but on clos­er lis­ten­ing turned out to be much stronger than i ini­tial­ly thought. A catchy, dreamy, melan­cholic blend of lo-fi noise pop, or­gan-and-synth punk un­folds on these tapes that al­so ra­di­ates a good deal of old­school Fly­ing Nun-type psy­che­delia.

Nice Surprise - Nice Surprise

Nice sur­prise in­deed, this lathe cut 7" de­but by some Austin duo mak­ing catchy noise some­where in the realm of pow­er- and garage pop. Es­pe­cial­ly the killer A-Side I'm Old will no doubt be a feast for fans of bands like Tom­my & The Com­mies, Bad Sports, Ra­dioac­tiv­i­ty, Cheap Whine or Son­ic Av­enues.

Eugh - Cassingle #1

New shit from this Kitchen Peo­ple-af­fil­i­at­ed Mel­bourne garage project. The A-side presents a sparkling pow­er pop gem rem­i­nis­cent of Liq­uids, Sa­tan­ic To­gas or Datenight, while the B-side con­tin­ues the di­rec­tion of the pre­vi­ous EP - the kind of quirky & snap­py garage punk you might as­si­ci­ate with the likes of R.M.F.C., Set-Top Box or Re­search Re­ac­tor Corp.

Liquids - Life Is Pain Idiot

Mat Williams' so­lo project Liq­uids has been around for a good while now and every new en­try in his by now pret­ty sub­stan­tial discog­ra­phy has been a pleas­ant, al­beit in­con­sis­tent ex­pe­ri­ence, as many of his re­leas­es felt like rather loose col­lec­tions of ma­te­r­i­al with vary­ing de­grees of qual­i­ty. That's not the case at all for Life is Pain Id­iot, his strongest col­lec­tion of songs in quite a while. With Erik Ner­vous once again work­ing his pro­duc­er mag­ic here, new stuff blends in per­fect­ly with what i con­sid­er to be the de­fin­i­tive ver­sions of songs which al­ready ap­peared in some form on one of his pre­vi­ous re­leas­es.

Al­bum-Stream →