Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Stream: Baby Ghosts - Let's Always Hang Out Together, Okay?

Baby Ghosts are a punk band from Utah that employ elements of chiptunes in their sound. Typically, that sentence would be a nauseating description for me. When I hear Utah, I don't think of music. In fact, I don't really think of much except maybe canyons and Mormons, which are two things generally devoid of life that I could easily do without. Chiptunes are usually a novelty component that wears thin pretty quick. Sure I've had fun listening to HORSE the Band and The Advantage, but I don't find myself returning to them often. Despite these things, Baby Ghosts have smashed my preconceptions and left me feeling foolish. Let's Always Hang Out Together, Okay? contains irresistible songs that are far from bland or gimmicky and have me coming back endlessly.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Stream: Sneeze - I'm Going to Kill Myself

Last night, I made my way to the Elks Lodge in Cambridge, MA where I was greeted by a welcome and familiar sound. It was that of Sneeze, one of Allston's finest up-and-comers, blasting away at gritty punk anthems. The band have a sound that could only come from those who are as well-versed in the punk scene of the 90's as they are the grunge. When writing about music, it gets exhausting constantly spewing out genres to place bands in. It seems like a new genre pops up every 10 seconds and I am guilty of muddling them together. Using genres in this manner, they start to lose their meaning. With Sneeze, I'm going to stick with one: grunge-punk. OK, I know - I rant about over-complicating genres and then I use a hyphenated one, right? Well, in this case, it is just too perfect. On the starkly titled I'm Going to Kill Myself, Sneeze find the perfect middle ground between grunge's distorted accessibility and punk's anthemic abrasiveness.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Stream/Download: Trach - Heavy Arms EP

The duo Trach (pronounced "Track") is comprised of TRavis Hunter (Scouter) and zACH D'Agostino (Arvid Noe). Can you do the math there? The Heavy Arms EP is another reason why I have been obsessing over the sounds coming from Allston, Massachusetts lately. These six largely instrumental tracks each have their own unique vibe making for an entertaining 20+ minute listen. The opener and title track is a fantastic entry point and is both smooth and crunchy like organic peanut butter. Speaking of organic, they have a natural chemistry much like Boston’s other beloved duo Fat History Month.

Stream/Download: Geronimo! - Buzz Yr Girlfriend: Vol 2 - The Burden of Genius

Chicago's Geronimo! are a DIY band that have a distinctive mixture of post-punk and noisy progressive grunge. Their latest release is a sequel of sorts to last year's Buzz Yr Girlfriend: Vol 1, a gravelly 4-track cassette. Buzz Yr Girlfriend: Vol 2 - The Burden of Genius improves upon that release by leaps and bounds. With enhanced production and stellar songwriting, they secure their place one of more intriguing bands from the windy city.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Mid-Year Report

Anyone who knows a chronic music enthusiast knows that we live to make lists. Yeah, High Fidelity has us pegged in many ways. It’s a month past the midway point but I’d like to share my favorites from the first half of 2012. I started this awhile ago so that’s why some of the stuff I have written about lately isn’t featured here. I’m not going to ramble on too much because there is going to be a lot of music for you to dive into. I’m kicking it off with my Top 25 Albums and a Spotify playlist with my favorite track from each.