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Artist of the Month
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Drowned in Sound: Chandos - Rats in Your Bed

July 2014
Talkative
"Hot Fruit Barbeque
"
mp3

Whitnessing the growth of Portland punky psych-pop outfit, Talkative, over the years, has been an absolute pleasure. Each of their albums has a home in my music library and heart. Not to mention the dudes in the band are some of the finest gents among the Portland music community. I knew we'd be good buds from the first time I met guitarist/synth/vocalist Cody Berger in 2011, after my own band played a show at Kelly's Olympian, and I reluctantly let an intoxicated Cody, saying "hey man, I heard you like to smoke pot too, cool!" hop a ride back to the SE with me to shorten his walk home. 

Talkative's latest stoney efforts, Hot Fruit Barbeque, takes their raucous high energy sounds to new levels. And it's not just upscaled production. The album feels more purposeful than their previus work, each song commanding you to yield and listen or dance (I prefer to wiggle). Lead single "Rudy Huckleberry" will be left lingering in your ear as you try to recreate Berger's catchy but mostly unintelligible vocal hooks for the remainder of the day. Equally as catcy, "Snow Jobs" and "Hava Nagila" showcase the impressively explosive capabilities of Casunn Taft's drumming. The boys explore slightly more worldly rhythms and tones alongside their distorted guitars on "Gentrifuckation" for an overall excelent, bouncy, party track. 

Hot Fruit Barbeque easily falls at the top of my list of favorite albums in 2014. Listen here.

- Travis Leipzig


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sxsw

Born Cages announce LP "I’m Glad I’m Not Me" + play SXSW

New York anthemic pop-rockers Born Cages are releasing their debut album, "I’m Glad I’m Not Me," on June 2nd, just in time for your summer mix tape! If you’re a weather optimist (stuck in a hopeless NYC winter) and are already compiling those rooftop jams, you'll find some noteworthy candidates in their debut EP "The Sidelines," featuring five mostly upbeat, soaring, and heavily melodic tracks - which will also appear in the full length. Born Cages is one of the first bands to join new NYC label Washington Square, joining The Hold Steady and former The Virgins singer Donald Cumming. They will co-headline with Dreamers on a full US tour beginning on March 4th heading to Austin for SXSW, and tour again this summer with the 2015 Vans Warped Tour. - Leora Mandel

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Stranger Cat announces debut album "In the Wilderness" + plays The Kint on 03.07

Brooklyn songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Cat Martino recently unveiled her new project Stranger Cat, an electronic duo with producer Sven Britt. The band has just announced the April release of debut LP "In the Wilderness," which was written by Cat after a difficult period of disillusionment with the music world and its challenges. An accomplished vocalist and songwriter, Cat has collaborated with many noteworthy NYC artists including Sufjan Steven and Sharon Van Etten. Her new project sees her explore the creative possibilities given by electronic instruments, and features darker atmosphers, without abandoning her pop sensibility and souful style. Stream the single "Sirens" below, and - if you dig - see Stranger Cat live at The Knit on 03.07

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Jack + Eliza unveil new single "Diamonds," announce debut album + play SXSW

With their airy melodies and beautiful vocal harmonies, Jack + Eliza charmed the crap out of NYC in 2014. They are now (not so) secretly planning to accomplish something similar in Austin later in March, during the 6 days of SXSW's Music Week. The duo just released this new single entitled "Diamonds" from their upcoming debut album "Gentle Warnings" (scheduled to be released in June). They have put together quite a team for this record, produced by Chris Zane, but also featuring the touch of Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor in some tracks like the one we are streaming below.

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ONWE release "Hyperbole" LP + tour their way to Austin

ONWE's odd mix of post-punk and psych-pop makes a fine vehicle for David Welles' vindictive lyrical style. Single "Unpaid Internship"—a mini-hit perpetrated by blogs in summer 2014—mocked the dubious self-confidence of Brooklyn hipsters. I suppose they had it coming... ONWE released a new 8 track album entitled "Hyperbole" this past January, and will tour their way to Austin for SXSW in March. Check out single FOMO, streaming below.

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Another NYC garage suprgroup: Beech Creeps release debut album + travel to SXSW

Beech Creeps is a new, very noisy NYC based trio featuring members previously active with the likes of Yeasayer, Pterodactyl, People Get Ready and Ex Models among otheres (wow!). Their music has the immediacy of garage rock but sports a sound that's more tense and explosive, reminiscent at time of Sonic Youth's noise rock. Considering the talent behind the instruments, we highly recommend their upcoming shows, in particular the (self titled) record release party at Union Pool on March 3rd. If you are going to Austin for SXSW you may stumble upon them there...

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