Ten for Your Attention This… Wednesday?

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Normally, the title would be “Ten for Your Attention This Tuesday”.   As you might have noticed, today is not Tuesday.  It’s Wednesday.  Yet these ten songs are too darned good to make you wait until next Tuesday, so I’ve sacrificed the alliteration in the title in favor of sharing these tunes with you.  Another deviation from the norrmal: instead of listing all the artists in alphabetical order, I will be starting the list with two songs that I’m lucky enough to get to debut.

The first new track comes courtesy of Sean Russell and his new band, Cut Throat Finches. I could be wrong here, but I think that their new album Reality is gonna catch on like wildfire. I’ve been listening to the tracks repeatedly for the past several days, and there’s plenty of killer tracks on this album. If forced to pick a favorite, however, I’m going with “Listen”. I’ve been trying to find the perfect way to describe this song, and yet nothing feels quite right. I could use all sorts of genre labels, like jangly indie pop with a hint of alt-country, yada yada yada. The simple truth, however, is that this is a wonderfully written and orchestrated song. There’s a certain comfortable familiarity in the melody, but not in a cliched and trite manner. It’s the familiarity of a favorite article of clothing, or like that record you spin over and over. Reality will be that kind of record, and yes, you’ll want to “Listen” over and over (pun intended).

 

I’ve been anxiously awaiting for Austin artist Jaimee Harris to release her first proper full length album. I’m still not sure how long it will take for Ms. Harris to complete this album. What I do know is that she’s contributed a song to an upcoming compilation called The Polished Steel Sessions. For those not familiar with Polished Steel, like I was until yesterday, it’s a blog focusing on Americana music from the state of Texas, and written by Brian T. Atkinson. I’m curious to hear the rest of the album, but I’m especially excited about Jaimee’s song on here, “Where Are You Going”. It’s a quieter, simpler song than what I’m used to from her (at least until the dramatic conclusion), yet this more subtle style works like a charm on this track, as you can hear below.

 

Now that my two special premiere songs are done, we’ll resume the whole alphabetical order deal, which leads us to Ashley Paige Somogyi (hey, it’s the whole iTunes alphabetical order deal). While Somogyi is undoubtedly a “pop” artist, her latest track “Wait for You” has a certain moodiness and depth to it that makes it more than “just another pop song”. In fact, there’s a longing quality in how she sings and a richness and intensity in her vocal style that makes her stand out in the crowded field of female pop vocalists.

I don’t know much about Blasting Caps. Based on the Bandcamp page, it would appear that Daniel Ragusa is essentially the entirety of Blasting Caps. I can also tell that Mr. Ragusa has a very self-deprecating sense of humor, insulting his voice and all his instruments. To be fair, this is very clearly a DIY project, and if you’re looking for perfect production, look elsewhere. If, however, you use phrases like “lo-fi” and “DIY” as compliments, and lean in the post-punk direction, then I can’t imagine how you wouldn’t become a fan of Blasting Caps. His Apocalypse Dreams album is full of catchy tunes written by Ragusi, as well as covers of Blondie and Elf Power songs. Below is Part 1 of the title track.

Back in high school, I always gravitated more towards the goth and freak crowds. It’s not that it was a fashion or lifestyle statement, but rather an appreciation for the dark, synth driven music. It should be no surprise then that I’m really into this new Garden of Mary EP, The Agony in Memory.  The album’s opener, “The Silent Road”, sounds something like a cross between early Cure and Catherine Wheel (particularly in their vocals).  I feel like I’m back in high school listening to this.

I first came to know of Ila Minori (shown above) through her previous band in San Antonio called Ledaswan. The band came highly recommended by The Chloes, and that’s a strong endorsement in my book. Ledaswan broke up in 2013, and now Minori is working on her first solo album, Traveling with Ghosts. She briefly released her song “Sarah” as a free download for an extremely limited period of time. As in, if you blinked, you missed it. Lucky for me, I caught the song, and I loved it. There’s a certain sweetness, almost twee quality, to the melody, and certainly the song has plenty of killer hooks. If I had to do the RIYL thing, the first two artists I’d list are Belle & Sebastian and La Sera. That may seem a strange combination, yet if you listen, it may make sense.

 

I’ve heard many classify the music of Madame Mims as hip-hop, and that includes the artist herself. I’ll be honest, I’m not really hearing much hip-hop influence on her latest effort, Parasomnias. What do I hear? A blend of 80’s R&B crossover pop with an modern electronic indie twist.   That, and a whole lot of fun.  In fact, I’m gonna throw out this idea: let’s make “Turn It Loose” the official local summer party jam. What do you think?

It wasn’t an easy call for me to select which song off of the new Mean Motor Scooter single to choose? Usually, the first track is the obvious single. I still decided to opt for the raw energy of A-side “Naked Brunch”, but the glam meets garage rock B-side of “Such a Seducer” is practically as good. Or you can just save yourself the frustration of deciding which is better and get both songs. Yeah, that makes sense.

I’ll be totally honest. I like TALL, but their last CD, Somewhere in Between, was a little too musically schizophrenic for my taste. Don’t get me wrong, there were great moments, like “Psych Drone”, “Back and Forth”, and “The Change”, just to name a few. It’s just that as an album, the continual genre hopping between surf, funk, and psych made it near impossible for the album to have any sense of continuity. I sense, however, that TALL thrives on regularly reinventing itself. The band’s latest effort, recovery, is yet a totally different side of the group. The songs on the EP are stripped down, bare bone, and very emotionally direct. This results in what I’d say is easily TALL’s strongest effort to date. Start with “With Her #1” as your introduction to recovery.

Finally, I bring you the latest song from VVOES, formerly known as Ill Smiths. I had meant to share “Days Are Numbered” with everyone last week, and even do an interview with member Rene Floyd. But, you know, life got in the way. I still hope to eventually get time to do that interview, but until then, enjoy this track which offers a heaping serving of fun post-punk with a dash of indie surf. Fans of Sealion don’t want to sleep on this track.

And that’s the ten. If you want your song to be featured in a future edition of Ten for Your Attention, then Talk to the Ghost. The Ghost is a pretty reasonable and persuadable fellow.

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