Category Archives: Audio stream

Track Premiere: Hair & Skin Trading Company “Nihil”

Track will appear on the forthcoming new album.

By Fred Mills

Speaking as a huge fan of late ’80s/early ’90s British psychedelia – My Bloody Valentine, Spacemen 3, and Loop especially – I couldn’t be more thrilled to unveil a brand new track from the Hair & Skin Trading Company, the band formed by John Willis (drums), and Neil MacKay (bass, vocals) following Loop’s demise; they were augmented by Nigel Webb (guitar) plus the short-tenured keyboardist/sampler player Richard Johnston.

Longtime contributor Jonathan Levitt has just interviewed MacKay and Willis for BLURT about their classic 1992 album Jo in Nine G Hell as part of our “The Story Behind the Album” series which Levitt spearheads. (Check out, in particular, his profile of Thee Hypnotics’ Soul Glitter & Sin.) And not only did he obtain from the band an unreleased live recording of one of the album tracks to include, they also supplied him with an exclusive track from their forthcoming new album, I don’t know where you get those funny ideas from. 

Check out the brilliant “Nihil” below and don’t forget to read the interview at the above link.

Track Premiere: Smash Fashion “Rompus Pompous”

By Blurt Staff

Now that the smell of burnt fireworks and Lee Greenwood-led jingoism has finally faded,  we thought it was about time to focus on some West Coast explosion of talent. Blurt is proud to offer the song premiere of Smash Fashion’s new track “Rompus Pompous,” in all its glitter-encrusted frenetic glory.

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The song is the title track from the LA.-based glam/punk/power-pop band’s latest album (their fourth to date, for those counting) Rompus Pompous, which came out just 2 days after the nation’s anniversary, July 6th.

“Our title track ‘Rompus Pompous’ is a case of textbook narcissism… which seems to be running rampant!” says front man Roger Deering. Along with Deering, the band is made up of ex members of London Quireboys, Smack and Rock City Angels.

Enjoy!

Listen to New Tracks by The Chills

 

Tourdates announced so far are at the bottom.

By Blurt Staff

New Zealand indie stalwarts The Chills will be releasing Snow Bound on September 14 via Fire Records and through their Bandcamp page – the followup to 2015’s Silver Bullets, it will be available on CD, digital, black vinyl, and limited edition clear splatter vinyl. According to Fire, “On ‘Snow Bound’ lost heroes are lamented, relationships are re-evaluated, atonement is sought, mortality is mulled over and fake news is undercut. It’s serious stuff, the thoughts of a dysfunctional 50-something wrestling with maturity and discovering that their post-punk DIY beliefs still have a real voice that resonates between the fans of their early years and which can now pass down to the next generation.”

Below, listen to both “Complex” and “Lord of All I Survey”.

TOURDATES:
09/14 Hamilton, NZ @ Altitude
09/15 Gisborne, NZ @ The Dome
09/16 Hawke’s Bay, NZ @ Haumoana Hall
09/20 CHCH, NZ @ Blue Smoke
09/21 Dunedin, NZ @ 50 Gorillas
09/22 Wanaka, NZ @ Water Bar
09/27 Wellington, NZ @ San Fran
09/28 New Plymouth, NZ @ Mayfair Theatre
09/29 Palmerston North, NZ @ The Globe
09/30 Paekakariki, NZ @ St Peter’s Hall
10/04 Whangarei, NZ @ Butter Factory
10/05 Leigh, NZ @ Sawmill Cafe
10/06 Auckland, NZ @ Galatos
10/07 Waiheke Island, NZ @ Artworks

Lykke Li Jumps the Shark – or does she? – w/New Tracks

But it could have been worse – like bringing in Rihanna or ZZ Top as guests…

By Barbi Martinez

To paraphrase Stereogum, we’ve ALSO waited for years for a new Lykke Li album – Blurt has sung the praises of the Swedish chanteuse fairly endlessly  since she first appeared on the scene (including HERE and HERE and HERE). But the upcoming So Sad So Sexy, due out next week, is uncomfortably starting to sound like a misstep, a kind of how-do-I-compete record for the singer, when in truth her fan base already trusted her to trust her instincts and NOT follow trends.

Check out a pair of tracks, below – “Two Nights”  is a silly piece of ’80s-esque fluff with a pointless hip-hop edge and featuring a guest rapper, Portland’s Aminé; while the languid-to-the-point-of-dreary “Sex Money Feelings Die” simply floats for a few seconds, then gradually collapses, like a balloon that’s been aloft for a bit too long with the air inside it turning stale.

Don’t get us wrong – her voice remains a national treasure for her homeland, and it’s on full display here on both tracks. But she also sounds conflicted, as if she knows she’s essentially sacrificing her hard-won identity as a sonic iconoclast in the pursuit of short-term social media flash. Come back, Lykke – we still want you.

Exclusive Album Premiere: Arthur Alexander (Sorrows/Poppees) Solo LP

 

Kickass platter One Bar Left arrives this week, May 4, on the Dead Beat label.

 

By Blurt Staff

Arthur Alexander is no stranger to memorable guitar hooks. As the guitarist/singer/songwriter from both the mid-‘70s NYC power-pop band The Poppees and early ‘80s power-pop band Sorrows he’s written his fair share of impossible to shake ditties. That’s one of many reasons Blurt is stoked to be able to premiere Arthur Alexander’s new debut solo effort, One Bar Left.  The LP comes out May 4th on all formats via Dead Beat Records, and traffics in a similar high-energy style of power-pop from his former bands.

“The songs on this album literally span decades – from some of the very first songs I’d written, like “Hello Suzanne” and “Till I Was On My Way”, to “I’ll Get Your Love Someday” which I wrote while I was with The Poppees, through “Can’t Get You Out Of My Dream” written shortly before Sorrows’ breakup, to songs written only recently,” said Alexander. “Some started their life years ago, but were never finished, only to be completed as I was recording this album.”

One of the things he’s proudest of on this album is how all the songs (and it’s a lot of songs!), no matter how diverse from one to the next, all seem to somehow flow together.

“As unintuitive as it may sound, I think that’s because I paid absolutely no attention or made any effort to making them “sound similar”.  Instead, I went for what sounded and worked the best for each song, and nothing else. I simply went where each song wanted to take me, rather than me trying to take the song where I thought it should go. “Shot In The Heart” felt like it wanted to sound like Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” meets Tom Waits?  Why Not?!  As long as I felt like I’m staying true to myself and my music, that’s all that mattered.”
Check it out for yourself. Oh, and while you’re at it, check the man himself out at his Facebook page for more info, tour dates, et al.

Listen to New Sean Alan Track “My Love For You”

New album en route in June…

By Blurt Staff

It wasn’t all that long ago when singer-songwriter scored a coup when his song “In This World” was featured in the FX series Better Things. The Los Angeles artist (also, we are advised, “the driving force behind a number of lesser known rock outfits, including The Atma, Squirrel TV and Peppermint Wolf, as well as the adventurous hip-hop sounds of Seanny Dogg”) is eyeing a June release for a new album, The Show Must Go On, and you’ll be seeing him plenty of places as the year unfolds.

Meanwhile, last month he dropped a new single, “My Love For You,” which you can check out below:

Visit his official website or Facebook page to keep track of his touring itinerary with The True Love Band. Dude just might be in love…

Listen to Stream of Awesome New Buffalo Tom Album

Quiet and Peace from the Boston heroes arrives this Friday via North Carolina Schoolkids label.

By Blurt Staff

We’ve touted the greatness of Bill Janovitz as well as  his veteran Boss-town outfit Buffalo Tom numerous times in the past (ask any staff member about his or her times in the audience back during the ’80s college rock years or, more recently, in Austin and SXSW and onward…). So to have BLURT’s compadres at the Schoolkids Records label drop the band’s new record Quiet and Peace on March 2 is a real treat – and we are soaking in the album stream posted today at the Los Angeles Times. Check it out at that link, along with an interview with the band, or selected tracks at Schoolkids’ Soundcloud page. Meanwhile, here’s a track that grabbed us here in the office by the ears this morning and didn’t let go, “Lonely, Fast and Deep” – it’s classic BT, and so true to the group’s Boston roots it should be the city’s new anthem:

Incoming: Michelle Malone’s Kickass “Slings & Arrows” Album

Pure, unfiltered Georgia soul lined at the edges with bluesy Americana and primal punk ‘n’ roll…

BY FRED MILLS

Without a doubt, Atlanta’s Michelle Malone is one of the South’s quintessential flag-bearers, having rocked as hard and as long as all of her Georgia peers while not once serving up an artistic misstep. About to drop is her new album, Slings & Arrows, and it is a freakin’ scorcher. You want some early proof? Check out opening track “Just Getting Started” over at her Soundcloud page.

This Friday, March 2, marks the official national release of Slings & Arrows  on Malone’s own SBS label (smart fans lodged their orders early on via a grassroots crowdfunding campaign, and you can still grab autographed records, colored vinyl, and teeshirts at her official website). To date, she’s released more than a dozen studio albums, and while I’m loathe to utter the cliched phrase “if you thought her last album was good, wait until you hear this one…” – her last one being Stronger Than You Think, reviewed HERE – this time out, it’s nigh-on impossible to avoid saying it.

Wait until you hear Slings & Arrows, music fans. It will absolutely, totally, kick your ass. Do I look like I’m kidding here? Our review will post in a couple of days to give you plenty of time to queue up at your local indie record store…

 

Hear Franz Ferdinand Cover Angel Olsen

Asheville, NC, artist steadily increases her national – and international -stature.

By Barbi Martinez

Angel Olsen, who was our 2016 Artist of the Year, continues to grow her admiring fanbase – among those fans, the young men of Franz Ferdinand, who have covered her classic “Shut Up Kiss Me”. Check it out, below.

Track Premiere: Jamie McLean Band “You’re Not The Only One”

Tune culled from the artist’s new album arriving next week. (Photo: Evan Felt)

By Blurt Staff

Brooklyn-based Americana rocker Jamie McLean, who in the past has toured as guitarist for the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Aaron Neville, Brett Dennen and more, is about to drop a new solo album. It’s the follow-up to 2011’s superb Sunday Morning: produced by Wilco’s Ken Coomer at Nashville’s Sound Emporium, One and Only features the tight-as-nails Jamie McLean Band (McLean along with Brian Griffin on drums and Ben Mars on bass) and includes guests Sam Bush and Jeff Coffin (Dave Matthews Band).

We’re proud to be able to premiere a track from the new record, which arrives in stores and a digital outlets next week, Feb. 9. Check out “You’re Not The Only One”:

McLean offered his take on the tune and its genesis: “‘You’re Not The Only One’is a rock and roller but lyrically it speaks to the human condition. It focuses on how everyone, no matter who there are will go through something difficult at some point in their lives. There will be conflict, heartache, fear or sadness but there are brighter days ahead. There is solace in knowing that we have all been there and we can always elevate above the trouble. We can turn the dark to light and it will no doubt get better.

“The guitar riff at the beginning of the song just came to me. It felt like a Neil Young and Crazy Horse riff and there are certainly nods to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers in there. Once I had that main musical theme I was off and running. ‘Communication broke down’was the first lyric to come to me and I dove into a story based on relationships and conflict and how to overcome it. I think it’s a bit of a universal sentiment.

“I had the verses and pre-choruses for a few months but just couldn’t seem to finish up the chorus. On one of my many songwriting trips to Nashville I hooked up with Tim Jones and we pretty quickly got to the big “You’re Not The Only One” chorus. It’s anthemic and really elevates the whole song in a perfect way. I love the “staring at the ceiling” and “we can turn the black to blue” lines. They are so visual to me.”

The Jamie McLean Band will tour behind the album throughout the US and Canada this year, and by all accounts they are a smokin’ live ensemble, having performed with Gregg Allman, Aaron Neville, Dr. John, Taj Mahal, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Trombone Shorty, Los Lobos, Blues Traveler, Marc Broussard, Gov’t Mule and many more, turning up the heat at festivals like Bonnaroo, Mountain Jam, Gathering of the Vibes, Targhee Fest, Ottawa Blues Fest, Quebec City Summer Fest, and Warren Haynes’ Christmas Jam.