It’s hard consistently rounding up ten quality new acts and songs every week. The time and thought needed to write about all these acts can be a drain. And yet it’s also quite invigorating to have a platform to share great Texas acts with everyone. So I bring you the first Ten for Your Attention in over a month. As usual, the acts are listed in alphabetical order, just because ranking all this is just too much for me.
And kicking off this post is a track that’s a pretty darn big deal in my book. Bravo, Max! has shared a small sneak preview of their upcoming album Bullfighter Blues. While the album probably won’t be released until November, KXT featured three of the tracks on their website yesterday. This is my favorite of the tracks. It’s called “Clean Slate”, and it just might be the best song the band has put out to date. At the minimum, I’d argue it’s their most immediately accessible and catchy track. Listen so you can argue/agree with me (circle the appropriate choice).
It seems like there have been more than a few bands lately that have worn their Byrds influence on their sleeves. If you’re like me, however, you won’t see that as a bad thing. In fact, the Austin band December Boys manage to do it quite nicely. “You Can’t Love a Stone”, the opening track on their self-titled debut, manages to combine the rich, jangly guitar sound of The Byrds with melancholy lyrics that are in direct contrast to the poppy melody. Not all the songs on the album follow this formula, but fans of classic rock and/or alt-country need to take some time to listen to December Boys, and “You Can’t Love a Stone” is a wonderful introduction to this band.
Rarely do I find beats without words compelling enough to listen to, as they often feel incomplete. To be honest, I still feel that sense when listening to the work of San Antonio based Elegant Eternal. Yet there’s such a sinister yet captivating quality to Elegant Eternal’s beat that I feel the need to share it. The real truth is I feel that the right rapper could tell a powerful and compelling tale over these beats that just might turn the rap world on its head. Although all the tracks on TR4PWITCH are strong, I’d have to choose “I DNT H4V 4NY FR3NDS” as the strongest.
Spoiler alert: “The Kazoo Song” by I Happy Am does not feature any kazoo playing in it. Still, it’s a fun, catchy, quirky tune clocking in at a mere 100 seconds. Surely you can spare 100 seconds to give it a listen.
Although there’s only five tracks on John Earle Mainord‘s EP Sounds of the New South, he seems more than ready to take on his singer-songwriter competition in the metroplex. I’ll be surprised if others don’t catch onto him soon. You can purchase the EP on Bandcamp, and would recommend you do so. Also while you’re at the site, take a moment to read and listen to his lyrics. While the lyrics of “The Dam Gon’ Break” may be brief, there’s a honest straight forward style to Mr. Mainord that makes his storytelling all the more compelling.
Kyoto Lo-Fi recently released a Demo EP on Bandcamp. Yes, the songs are demos, and the sound quality isn’t perfect (particularly on the final track “Megatron”). Still, these four songs suggest that the band, given time and a good producer, could create a really killer album. Fans of acts like Sealion should give a listen to Kyoto Lo-Fi. “Spaceships” is a particularly catchy post-punk surf rock tune.
The Lash Outs (shown above) will be releasing their new album, State of Excess, on March 11th. In the band’s words, the album is their attempt to ” express a common dude’s observations on consumerism and spoiled young people combined with the familiar themes of fear, anxiety, and social ineptitude.” And all of that is set to a cool punk rock beat. The band has kindly given me permission to debut the title track to the album below.
Mary Walker‘s style has certainly changed since she debuted in late 2012. Whereas her earlier material focused on a more straight ahead singer-songwriter approach, Ms. Walker is now focusing more on her soul and even pop leanings on Scenes of You and Me. My favorite tracks tend to be the slower songs, as best exemplified by “Cure”.
I don’t know much about SIR except that they’re opening for Reagan James and Madi Davis at The Live Oak on March 11th. That, and the fact that “Wine and Regrets” is a darn good song. Not bad for a band that seems to have come out of nowhere.
Finally, Tony Ferraro has a new album out called A Parrot Buys a Hotel. You’re probably thinking it’s gonna be all that and then some. Yeah, that pretty much sums it up. To try to expand on that is just pure “Senselessness”. See what I did there?