Wednesday, May 1, 2019

The Exbats - Everybody Loves My Mom

How cool is this? It is a father / daughter band called The Exbats - Inez plays the drums and is the lead singer, while dad Ken is the guitar player. Toss in a bass player and you have some incredibly hooky garage punk sounds that I just adore. I bet they put on a grand show. Their debut album, E Is For Exbats is just a joy and immediately found its way to my Top Albums of 2019. Absolutely impossible to not smile listening to their songs.
My main earworm has been Everybody Loves My Mom. I keep waking up with its chorus rattling around in my head. See if it doesn’t work for you too!

Monday, April 29, 2019

Dido - Give You Up

Dido, the former lead singer of Faithless, has come out with her first album in 6 years, Still On My Mind and wow, is it fantastic! An ethereal yet powerful voice, she strings together some great melodies with deeply felt lyrics. All the songs seem to tell a personal story. It has quickly found a place on my repeat listening for 2019. Wonder if I can get my act together enough to catch her at the House of Blues in June?
Hard to pick just one song, so I will toss a few out there for you.
First up is Hurricanes, where she sings about facing up to a storm of feelings:

But I think if I had to pick one song, and that’s the one that goes on my favorite singles so far of 2019, it would have to be Give You Up, another song about emotions. In some ways it echos the fantastic 10cc song, I’m Not In Love, with lyrics like:
Got your picture covering up the cracks on the wall 
But the lines won’t fade
Didn’t think that I would be missing you at all 
Maybe that was my mistake

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Perfect Son - So Divine

So I am nearly done listening to my epic Google Music Editors' Choice playlist for February 2019 - over 150 songs and more than 10 hours of music. You can find it here:

AllMusic 2019-02 Playlist

I try to do this every month. I go to the Editors' Choice page for the month and grab 3 "track picks" from every Pop/Rock, Folk, Country, Blues and Electronic album on the list. It gives me great exposure to all kinds of sounds I just won't hear anywhere else. And these days, most every album on the list is available streaming from somewhere. Sometimes there are new compilations that aren't streaming, like February's The Complete Singles 1970-1980 double CD set for Gordon Lightfoot, or Michael Rother's Solo, a 4 CD retrospective. But these I can usually pull together some samples from previous releases.

One of my favorite's so far from the February list is Perfect Son's debut solo album Cast. Perfect Son is Tobiasz BiliƄski, a Polish musician and this album is a great sounding prog / electronic rock album with lush sounds and some deep rhythm. I can't wait to dive into it further. All three songs on my list are really great sounding, but if I had to pick one, it would be So Divine. The cover is a little odd looking, but the sounds from within are dynamite!

But that doesn't mean the other songs weren't great too. Here's Lust:

Monday, March 4, 2019

pronoun - Wrong

One of my favorite tunes from 2018 is Pronoun’s Wrong. Pronoun is, to quote, “[t]he confessional pop project of Alyse Vellturo”, whatever that means. Guess she grew up here in Boston and graduated from the Berklee College of Music before she went to New York. No albums yet, really, but a couple great songs. I love the sweeping hook on Run:

But even better is the great catchy chorus of Wrong
and you cant go backwards
guess i couldn’t ever relate
now im sitting feeling sorry
for somebody that i hate
and it feels so wrong
and it feels so wrong
Check it out. And I hope she comes back home soon for a show or 3, because I will definitely try to check it out.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Mind Spiders - Deserve

Let’s get back on the Vehement Flame bandwagon, shall we? It’s been awhile, but I’m going to try and post at least 2 or 3 times a week. I created a Google Music playlist for the’s Favorite Indie Pop and Rock Albums, as I had missed creating my usual monthly playlist for a few months during the summer. It didn’t really add to much to my own list of top singles but there were a few additions. One of them was from the Mind Spiders’ January release, Furies. Oddly enough, this “Best of 2018” release didn’t even make their own Editors Choice list for January 2018!
Mind Spiders seems to be the work of mostly one man, Mark Ryan. According to the Dirtnap Records Bandcamp page for the album “Furies is their most electronic album yet”. The nice driving beats really9 get my feet a-tappin and I really enjoyed several of the cuts on it. A good example is Never Like That:

But I think my favorite cut is the short, pulsing, driving Deserve:

I’ll be looking for more from Mr. Ryan in the future!