thefeaturesNashville’s hometown indie-pop heroes The Features are back with a new self-titled album on May 14th! They released the bouncy, catchy single “This Disorder” (which you can stream below) a while back, and just announced the official presale for the album on CD/Vinyl and iTunes. The pre-order on Bandcamp will also get you 2 free mp3s of your choice.

The boys will be performing at Grimey’s Record Store Day festivities along with Paramore, Hotpipes, Alanna Royale, Daniel Bachman, Josh Rouse, and PUJOL. They’re also playing a special free Frye Jam Session showcase this Friday night at Mercy Lounge with Nikki Lane, Odessa Rose, and Andrew Combs. Get there early if you want in- it’s limited to 300 capacity!

Great news for the tragically hip in Nashville: Morrissey has rescheduled his Ryman appearance for March 29th! According to the Ryman’s website, all original tickets for the canceled Jan. 29th date will be honored. Lauren and I were devastated when the Jan. 29th show was canceled due to Moz’s bleeding ulcer. Thank goodness he’s back in good health, though! We’d heard rumors that the tour would be rescheduled for the summer with Patti Smith opening… but I guess one could only dream of being so lucky as to witness such an amazing bill…

caitlinrose200x200In case you’ve been under a rock recently, Caitlin Rose has a brand new album ready to drop March 5th. I’ve heard nothing but good, good, and more good about it. And this new song¬†“No One To Call” makes me even more excited about this album than the last teaser track “I Was Cruel.” Stream it below and pre-order the vinyl here and receive a free digital copy of the album on March 1st. DO IT.

artworks-000040548561-7w7rqn-t500x500I’ve been a huge Classixx fan ever since the undeniable “I’ll Get You” which featured the silky smooth vocals of Jeppe. The L.A. based duo have made quite a name for themselves doing remixes for several years now, and are finally set to release their debut full-length album on May 14th. The lead single “Holding On” is streaming on soundcloud now, and will be out officially on Feb. 19th. Do yourself a favor and take a listen below. It’s full of shiny synths, a smooth house beat, and sunny uplifting vocals. Dudes, throw this track on and watch your girlfriend grab your hand and drag you to dance. ūüėČ

I’ve also been keeping an eye on Australian nu-disco outfit Mitzi for a while now. They’ve done some DJing/remixing/etc… but are now ready to release a full-length album that shows their true colors- a full-on electro/nu-disco band capable of writing great songs that you can dance to. Sure, it’s obvious they’re following in the footsteps of similar Australian acts such as Cut Copy and Miami Horror, but that’s not a bad thing at all in my book. Check out the track “All I Heard” below, and grab the album via Future Classic on Feb. 19th.

Nashville’s beloved songstress Tristen has a new record, titled C A V E S¬†finished and ready to go. The only problem is, she needs money to repay the engineers, musicians, and others involved in the making of the record, and she also needs money to release it on vinyl. She’s doing this all through her own label Pupsnake Records, and she has a lot of handmade goodies and extras for the generous backers. Here it is straight from the horse’s mouth:

Hey guys. It’s time! I’m releasing the single ‘No One’s Gonna Know’ through my¬†KICKSTARTER¬†that has just launched. Watch the making of C A V E S video, get a download of ‘No One’s Gonna Know’ for a dollar, pre-order the whole dang record, or get your hands on exclusive hand-crafted merchandise I’ve made for the project. I need your help to release C A V E S on my own record label, Pupsnake Records. So please show some love and share it with your friends.

Kickstarter projects have become a dime a dozen these days, but trust me when I say that this is one that’s absolutely worth it.¬†She’s the type of artist who is incredibly meticulous about every detail of her art. If it’s not absolutely perfect, she will not put it out for the world to consume. That’s why she enlisted the help of names like Mike Mogis (of Bright Eyes, and practically every other Saddle Creek band), and Stephen Hague (New Order, Pet Shop Boys). She worked hard on this album and sought out the¬†right¬†people to make it perfect, and that’s why it’s something worth supporting. Please read the full story of the album and pledge your support at her Kickstarter.

*Full disclaimer: Tristen is a friend of mine. I am writing this not only as a friend, but as a genuine fan of her music. I would not urge your support via this blog if I didn’t objectively consider her a talented artist making music worth supporting.¬†

Several bits of good Nashville local music news hit me today:

The most exciting one is related to the Self show I mentioned last week! Matt posted a teaser compilation track today on the Self facebook, consisting of snippets of several BRAND SPANKING NEW Self songs. My mind is already blown just hearing this the first time. CHECK IT YO:

Also, Matt answered a few questions related to the Dec. 29th show- Yes this will be a full band show, and yes it will be the only Self show for the foreseeable future. I’ve also heard unconfirmed rumors that this will be the original Self lineup, except of course for guitarist Mike Mahaffey, who passed away in 2005.

Echo Group released the third in their¬†Challtalk Record Collection¬†series via Bandcamp. Each EP they’ve released thus far has been nothing short of phenomenal, even if they do draw excessive comparisons to the Walkmen. I would submit to those people that wearing your influences on your sleeve and being overtly derivative are two different things. EG walks that fine line quite well in my opinion. Check it out below:

Forget Cassettes released the second in their series of¬†O Cursa¬†EPs. This second offering of songs is a little meaner/grittier than the first, with the 3rd track “Tearin’ Up A House” reminding me a lot of the old Forget Cassettes. Check it out below:

Last, but most certainly not least, Caitlin Rose has announced her second full length album, to be titled¬†The Stand-In. It’s due out Feb. 25th, 2013 in the UK via Names Records, and March 5th in the US via ATO Records. She worked with producers Jordan Lehning (of the Non-Commissioned Officers) and Skylar Wilson this time around, and the songs were a much more collaborative effort than ever before. Looking forward to it! Check out the lead track “No One to Call” below:

Yesterday marked the release of the first of three new EPs from Forget Cassettes. It’s very exciting to see EG Cameron getting this long-awaited new material out there. You can get via the official Forget Cassettes website.¬†These songs are a stark departure from the guitar and heavy rhythm-driven material of the last two FC albums. Dark, moody, atmospheric and spacious, this new material still showcases Beth’s tender and sometimes even fragile voice, even though it’s sometimes buried in a wash of delay and reverb. The effects and electronic sounds work well with overall mood of the songs, and though it’s a departure from her previous material, it’s a departure that makes sense. Be sure to check out the EP release show this Saturday Oct. 20th at Exit/In, where they’ll be joined by By Lightning! and Poly.

 

 

The name Forget Cassettes may not be as meaningful for those not familiar with the Nashville indie rock scene of the mid-aughts, but if you are one of those unfamiliar, you’d be doing yourself a favor to change that. I was a big fan of most of the Nashville bands on the Theory 8 Records roster back in those days, and Forget Cassettes was one of them. Their debut Instruments of Action from 2003¬†is still a fave of mine. In 2006¬†Salt¬†featured a new 3-piece lineup and was also a fantastic record. Beth Cameron, the force behind FC, started work on this new album roughly 3 years ago, if memory serves. There were plans to release it under a couple of different names but ultimately she has come full-circle and arrived back at Forget Cassettes. I know she’s put countless hours and poured her heart and soul into this album, as is the case with everything she does, so I really look forward to hearing it.

The album as a whole won’t be officially released until January 2013, but leading up to it are three digital-only EPs consisting of songs from the album. Full details can be seen at her new website. Welcome back, Beth!

That’s the awesome new video for first single from Breakbot’s new album “By Your Side,” which is out now via iTunes and Beatport. I’ve made it quite clear before how much I love Breakbot, but let me say it again: I FUCKING LOVE BREAKBOT. Everything the dude touches turns to pure chill-funk gold. Has anyone used chill-funk before? Surely someone has… but I’ve never seen it, so for now I’m gonna claim it. This video is just about everything you’d expect from Breakbot- a hot girl in a vintage car, driving on a breezy road, etc… but toward the end it gets a little odd. In a good way. Just watch it, and make sure it’s on HD. As I said, the album is out now on iTunes and Beatport. Ed Banger is notoriously finicky about the timing of their releases on various platforms, so who knows when/if it’ll show up on Spotify.

Heavy Cream is the perfect example of how a band should evolve. When you say a band has “matured” it can often have bad connotations- it can be treated as a nicer way of saying a band has gotten boring or lost their raw energy. That is most definitely NOT the case with Heavy Cream. They have matured, but in an entirely good way. The rhythm section is anchored solidly by Tiffany Minton’s furious and powerful backbeats, Mimi Galbarez’s riffs have gotten more interesting while maintaining that rudimentary charm they’ve always had, and frontwoman Jessica McFarland’s vocals… well, they’ve always been really good and they’re still really good. As for the new album, it’s solid and well-produced. I have a terrible tendency to talk a lot about the production value of albums when I review them on here, but I really can’t help it this time. Ty Segall produced this album and the real victory here is the drum sounds- they’re insane but just right. Distorted but not painful… weird but not too weird. The snare drum barely even sounds like a snare drum anymore… more like pounding on muffled trash can lid at times. But for some reason it works! And the somewhat beefed-up guitar tones actually complement the overall sound quite well. The songs are as catchy as ever- but most venture into a slightly more complex rhythmic territory. There are even a few slow-burners (well, slow in comparison to most of their material at least…) that take the band from their old “girl-Ramones” vibe to a more straight-ahead, fist-in-the-face rock & roll feel that reminds me more of the Runaways. That’s a very obvious comparison but it has to be made. The biggest point I want to make is that this band has done nothing but get better over time, and this new album is the best example. Grab it now via Infinity Cat Recordings.

This one kinda took me by surprise… I hadn’t a clue that The Features were about to release a compilation of b-sides, outtakes, and demos. Still Lost: Volume One is a fantastic collection of rare Features gems. If you’re a die-hard fan and have been since “the early days” you have probably at least heard all these songs at some point, but there are some alternate mixes and versions on here that you may not have heard. The best part of this is that it’s totally free. So go grab it now via NoiseTrade. You have no excuse!

(Via We Own This Town)