Now that The Top 101 of 2018 has been counted down, it might seem that The Ghost’s job is done for the year. The truth is that there are still some loose ends to tie up. While I think I’ve done a decent job at keeping you updated about local and Texas music, there are always a few names that never quite make it to the blog. That’s what the final Monday Mixteen is all about. The names in this playlist have somehow yet to make it on to a previous playlist, countdown, or radio show. Hey, nobody’s perfect, but The Ghost is trying to make up for these mistakes. So here we go with the Monday Mixteen, and may 2019 be better for everyone than this past year!
- Royal Sons, “Praise and Warships”
If I had to select one act as the one I’ve most wrongly slept on during 2018, Royal Sons win the title hands down. This band lays down the rock in the heaviest possible fashion, taking no prisoners along the way. This title track to their album is, in The Ghost’s opinion, the best way to introduce a newbie to their sound. But you could select any track and it would be a full on tour de RAWK.
- Felt & Fur, “Pulling a Thread”
I must have talked about Felt and Fur at some point, though perhaps not this year. The Held EP is a moody but intriguing collection of songs for those who like their electronica with a strong dose of indie eeriness.
- Jonah the Runner, “Cardinal Park”
It somehow feels strange that with Houston being the largest city in Texas, I find so little out of the city that catches my ear. But this Houston rock band shows that Houston’s rock scene is by no means dead.
- Ashton Edminster, “Melody”
Thanks to Matthew Stephen Jones for turning me on to Ms. Edminster. Her piano heavy pop/R&B hybrid is a unique enough sound that it will help her find her own lane in this growingly congested genre.
- Arenda Light, “’05”
The title is a little misleading. When The Ghost thinks of ’05, images of overwrought emo come to mind, not such a solid grunge track as this. That’s alright though, no need to emo things up here. Carry on with your grungy bad selves.
- Charlie J. Memphis, “Bloody Is the Water”
How did I miss out on Mr. Memphis? This kid can play the blues and the rock.
- The Infamists, “Love Me Like a Heathen”
While Spencer Douglas Wharton got a bit of attention on my radio show for his solo album, his band’s Through Hell or High Whiskey album didn’t get the attention it’s due. That problem is being rectified as we speak (and as you listen).
- Kodachrome, “Rain in Vain”
I’m not sure if it was Austin blog Ovrld that turned me on to Kodachrome (though I think it was), I thank whoever for introducing me to this moody, sensual piece of electronica.
- Michael Lee, “Heart of Stone”
C’mon viewers of The Voice! How can you tell me this guy shouldn’t have been a contender? Sometimes these voters disappoint me.
- Offended by Everything, “The First Time”
It seems that every decade, there’s a nostalgia for what was popular twenty years ago. That means in the coming years, expect an onslaught of emo and pop-punk. While most of that does not excite The Ghost, I must say that Offended by Everything manages to take the best parts of pop-punk a la Bowling for Soup and give it a little extra needed grit. Maybe there’s hope for the pop-punk revival. Maybe.
- The Gawd Almighties, “Be So Kind”
Been seeing the name around a lot, and now finally sitting down and taking a listen. Good folky stuff, ya know?
- Glaze, “Daisy”
This Austin band was definitely discovered through Ovrld, and anytime The Ghost discovers a band with cool shoegaze overtones, it is sure to put a smile on my face.
- Fantasticboom, “I Thought I Could Save You”
The winner of the strangest comparison contest may go to Fantasticboom, whose song here sounds like a cross between Radiohead and Alan Parsons Project. And no, that’s not an insult.
- March and Beauty, “Out of Time”
I believe that The Belle Sounds have played shows with March and Beauty, and I also found them through a cool Austin-centric Spotify playlist. I’m not going to try to play pin the influence on the band here, because I hear way too many influences, yet none quite fit. I will say that lead vocalist Terri Dittmar holds hints of The Sundays and The Innocence Mission in her voice, but the band has a sound that is simultaneously familiar yet unique.
- Parker Chapin, “Be Careful”
I saw Joe Savage giving some raves to this guy, and that qualifies as a solid reference in my book. The Ghost is definitely impressed. Mr. Savage, if you have any more recommendations, this Ghost is all ears.
- Grex, “Emerald”
Some of you have probably experienced the fact that I’m not the best at returning emails. My track record with Grex, however, is so bad it’s either comic or pathetic, depending on one’s view. My apologies, sir, as you’ve got a unique sound that is both hard to define and impossible to limit by a simple genre label. Keep being your creative, unique musical self into 2019!