Posts Tagged ‘Horse Thief’

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It’s here! Our countdown of our favourite tracks of 2016 as nominated by MM, Mrs Mackerel, Chris T Popper and The Italian Job. Part One sees us counting down from 100 to 76.

So without further ado…

 

100 Oldermost – Finally Unsure

 

99 Slaves – People That You Meet

 

98 Spoilers – No Pressure

 

97 Adam Torres – Morning Rain

 

96 Johnny Dowd – Whiskey Ate My Brain

 

95 Molly Parden – Kentucky, I

 

94 The Felice Brothers – Jack At The Asylum

 

93 Horse Thief – Another Youth

 

92 Courtney Barnett – Three Packs A Day

 

91 The Coathangers – Watch Your Back

 

90 Whitney – No Woman

 

89 Leonard Cohen – You Want It Darker

 

88 Haybaby – Joke/Rope

 

87 Springtime Carnivore – Raised By Wolves

 

86 Jamie T – Tescoland

 

85 VATS – Melting Culture

 

84 Holly Throsby – What Do You Say

 

83 Happyness – Falling Down

 

82 Hooded Fang – Tunnel Vision

 

81 The Felice Brothers – Aerosol Ball

 

80 Bueno – Babyface

 

79 Loch Lomond – Silver Felt

 

78 Velcro Hooks – Galaxy Police Club

 

77 Carter Tanton – Twentynine Palms

 

76 Avers – Insects

 

Check back for Part 2 (75-51) tomorrow.

best of the weekNo less than ten songs for you this week including the return of The Shins, a brilliant new protest song from Kevin Morby as well as new tunes from The Orwells, Futurebirds,  Thee Oh Sees, Horse Thief and a tasty cover from Hinds. We also have our first official seasonal posting – slightly dubiously as it is still October – but it is She & Him so we’ll forgive them…

  1. The Shins – Dead Alive
  2. Kevin Morby – Stranger Things
  3. Hinds – Holograma  (Los Nastys cover)
  4. The Orwells – They Put A Body In The Bayou
  5. Thee Oh Sees – You Will Find It Here
  6. Futurebirds – Only Here For Your Love
  7. Corey Hanson – Replica
  8. Horse Thief – Another Youth
  9. Half Japanese – Attack Of The Giant Leeches
  10. She & Him – Happy Holiday

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chris T Poppers Top 20 2014

20) Natural Child – Dancin’ With Wolves

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19) Hamilton Leithauser – 11 O’Clock Friday Night

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18) Faces On Film – Percy

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17) Early Winters – A Thing For You

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16) Sleaford Mods – Routine Dean

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15) Eels – Mistakes of My Youth

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14) Chimes – Total Sunflower

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13) Dust From A 1000 Yrs – Smoke Em Up

12) Screaming Females – Ripe

11) The War On Drugs – Red Eyes

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10) Houndmouth – For No One

Any song which opens with a tortured reference to dropping acid will naturally pique my interest and coupled with Matt Myers vocals and stark production my curiosity is aroused further. Deftly suckering you in, For No One then tries to lead you down a darkened alley for a damn good kicking. It also proves you don’t necessarily need anything more than a guitar and a great vocal to pack an extraordinary punch.

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9) Sleaford Mods – Tiswas
Sleaford Mods’ album Divide & Exit (undoubtedly my favourite record of 2014) grasped the moment perfectly with it’s skewering of modern British life. I won’t try and dissect Tiswas, it’s just a banging tune with the lyrical equivalent of having your ears punched quite a lot. “I don’t want my dog on a string… that’ll hurt the thing” is my favourite line of the year. The humour, frustration and utter contempt is breathtaking at times. They are unlike anything else I’ve heard all year.

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8) Wooden Wand – Waveland
Ah, Mr Wand, I’ve been expecting you (sorry). A regular contributor over the years to my top 10’s Mr James Jackson Toth delivers yet again. It’s a song which appears to be absolutely straightforward; Toth recorded this by himself at home with his guitar and an 8-track recorder. However, like a particularly enormous onion there seems to be layer upon layer that reveals itself upon each further examination. And with the added onionesque quality of bringing a tear to the eye – through joy and sadness, my ridiculous metaphor is complete. With every listen I get a bit more from Waveland, it’s one of the hardest tricks to pull off but as usual Toth does it perfectly.

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7) Jonah Tolchin – Mockingbird
Opening up with kick-ass harmonica before the fiddle and guitar join the party Mockingbird is Tolchin’s sideways look at the nursery rhyme Hush Little Baby. So far so intrigued. It certainly has a strangely traditional feel and a classic break/riff stomp to it. It reminds me in a strange way of the climax of the classic 1981 film Southern Comfort where Powers Booth and Keith Carradine are serenaded by a full on Cajun hoedown. Brilliant deep, dark country on a low burn, just how I like it.

6) Horse Thief – Little Dust
Pretty much a sure thing for my top 10 from the first listen, the Oklahoma quintet Horse Thief (even the name makes me love them more) have struck gold with this perfectly formed piece of Americana. It begins with the piano before the guitar and rhythm section slide in forming the ‘taking it real easy…’ groove. It already feels like a country classic.

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5) The Amazing Snakeheads – Where Is My Knife
Take this song on in a fight – go on. I dare you. It will win hands down. In May this year I watched the Amazing Snakeheads deliver the best live performance I have seen for a long time and it blew my tiny mind. Dale Barclay is a man to be admired first and foremost. Mainly because he looks unfeasibly hard and secondly because he fucking means it. Menacing serial killer lyrics and a guitar picking out threats with a drum beat to rival any Tarzan film kind of works for me. Try it live when you’ve only ever heard one song by them before – quite an eye opener. Barclay growled at the audience ‘are youse my friends?’ my hand shot up like a rocket. Yes, I am, just don’t hurt me or get your knife.

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4) Elijah Ocean – Ride It Out
The other day this song was playing and my girlfriend was on her laptop, watching faces or something, when I noticed she was unconsciously singing along to the chorus. That’s what this song does; whoever you are (providing you have a soul) it touches you. The melody is simple enough, gently building throughout with the message of just getting through it, which is fairly universal. It actually becomes quite inspirational by the end with its catchy chorus infecting your brain. Life can sometimes feel like it’s on a continual loop of making you ride something or other out – good to have Elijah there to sing the soundtrack.

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3) Damien Jurado – Metallic Cloud
Been a firm favourite from the moment I heard it. Jurado’s voice sounds amazing, and the string section is nothing short of magnificent. It’s one of those songs where you can be listening in the car and when it finishes you realise your turning was a couple of miles back and you never noticed. Or, you’ve not seen one of those bastard mobile speed cameras because you’re singing along so loudly and enjoying the moment. Let’s see if I enjoy my Speed Awareness Course as much in the New Year…

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2) Girl Band – Lawman
Fucking chaos. That’s why I signed up; as soon as that guitar started I was dug in like a tick on a hound. Experimental without being utterly awful (which lets face it you don’t hear that too often.) The drums halfway through are pure moony, just listen to it. Keith Moon banging on your brain or Reverend Moon washing it…. take your pick, same result applies. The long drawn out guitar with heavy feedback compliments/adds to the cacophony perfectly. To paraphrase the band themselves this song is ‘…driven by insistent low-end skronk’. Quite.

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1) Sleaford Mods – Smithy
It’s all over in under 2 and a half minutes but still manages to make me grimace, smile and cower in equal measure. A brutal bass line and drum riff accompanies singer Jason Williamson’s verdict on the state of the nation. Not so much angry as bored with the sheer futility of it all, Sleaford Mods drill down until they reach (or is that retch) in to the unpleasant shitty bits of our modern culture. I like absolutely everything about this record, right down to Andrew Fearn throwing in a bit of chopper noise at the end. ‘Who cares about rock stars anymore?’ asks Williamson – not me mate. I’ve watched all my old heroes become parodies of themselves or even worse John bloody Lydon and I’m well and truly out of it.

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Dr Roddy's Top Ten 2014

As always we round off our best of the year posts with the individual contributions starting with the newly manacled wed Dr Roddy and his personal top ten of 2014.

…This year has seemed to fly by, I got married, we had a little boy and we are now in the middle of building works involving having our roof off in mid-winter. So it has been a hectic time. Thank heavens I have music to help me through and give me markers to help plot the time line of the past year.

These are the ten tunes that are constant in that time line.

10. Alt-J – Left hand Free
This tune has such a swagger about it. I think that it may actually be too cool for someone like me to listen to, but hell I just love it and it’s roundabout way of offering to kill the husband of a woman you fancy. It is the musical equivalent of a southern drawl.

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9. Mac Demarco – Brother
There is such a carefree feel to this song and so there should be with it’s simple message of “what the hell are we all doing in this hamster wheel running all day and getting nowhere“. So we should just “go home and take it easy now brother”. I like this man’s thinking.

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8. Sharon Van Etten – Every Time the Sun Comes Up
Sharon Van Etten has such a beautiful, pure voice, it sits perfectly alongside her sharp intelligent lyrics “I washed your dishes / but I shit in your bathroom “ I mean, argue with that! There are wonderful harmonies on the choruses, the tune is soft and calming, which removes the anger from the song.

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7. Spookyland – The Silly Fucking Thing
I didn’t like this song at first listen, or second for that matter, it took some getting this tune, but when I did oh my God I was relentless with it. At first it sounds like nothing particularly new and I don’t argue that Marcus Gordon’s voice could be divisive, but invest some time in it and you will reap the rewards of a beautiful crafted lament to love.

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6. Dan Amor – Sister Anne
This song paints a picture of England that you may find on the lid of a chocolate box. It’s only a cricket match away from caricature. I bathe in that kind of dream. The melody has a haunting nostalgia about it echoing sounds from the 60s back at you.

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5. Mark Erelli – Ice Fishing
I love the inevitability in the lyrics of this song everything seems to be history repeating itself. Lyrics are a strong influence with me, but it’s the tune picked out on the banjo and the great harmonica work that are the real stars of the show here.

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4. Dust From 1000 Yrs – Smoke Em Up
I got a pack of smokes today / something to do whilst I waste my life away”, that is the way you open a song, with a nihilistic, going nowhere delivery. Despite the melancholic arrangement of the song he seems excited by this treat. That is the reason I love this song – I mean how perfectly hopeless.

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3, Sleaford Mods – Tied Up In Nottz
What can I say about this band – they have been a revelation to me this year, they just seem to tick all the boxes. Sharp, witty, intricate lyrics all delivered with passion and a suitable amount of venom. Driven, but not overshadowed by simple yet perfect beats that are as relentless as Jason Williamson’s quest to point out the contrived bellends in our society. Someone’s got to….

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2. Horse Thief – Little Dust
This simple yet vast song is dripping with anthemic intent, and it reaches those heady heights effortlessly. This blissed out piece of genius is best enjoyed towards the end of the night with a couple of bottles of wine behind you and perhaps a touch of melancholy in the air.

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1. Royal Blood – Little monster
These boys seem to have taken the world by storm and rightly so. This blistering piece of rock is without doubt the best thing I have heard this year. It is aggressive and hard hitting with a hook that could make the dead rock. All of that out of a bass guitar… We have to mention Ben Thatcher’s super tight drumming here – it’s a big ask to be a drummer in a two piece, there is nowhere to hide and he provides a beat badass enough to cope with that monster riff.

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And the best song I first heard this year, but not from this year:

Future Of The Left – Manchasm
A wonderfully surreal offering from the best thing to come out of Wales since Bara Brith.

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Gig of the year:

Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip
Myself and Chris T Popper went to see Dan Le Sac and Scroobius Pip, not for the first time I add. I was blown away by the energy and freshness that exudes from every show. These guys just get better (no pun intended).

Guilty Pleasure:

Meghan Trainor – All About The Bass
Sometimes I don’t know what is wrong with me. It’s like there is a 14 year old girl trapped in me (not like Joseph Fritzel) but I’ll tell you now I am all about that bass…..

Best song name (Usually best band name):
Melvins with….. Piss Pisstopherson. Genius!

MM's Best of 2014: The Top Twenty

So here we are, the favourite twenty tunes of 2014 as voted for by the MM contributors.

Enjoy!

20 Sharon Van Etten – Tarifa

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19 Dan Amor – Sister Anne

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18 Sleaford Mods – Tied Up In Nottz

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17 Alvvays – Archie, Marry Me

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16 Pink Mountaintops – North Hollywood Microwaves

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15 Elijah Ocean – Ride It Out

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14 Royal Blood – Little Monster

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13 Sleaford Mods – Smithy

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12 Jamie T – Limits Lie

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11 Parquet Courts – Ducking & Dodging

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10 Eels – Mistakes Of My Youth

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9 Royal Blood – Figure It Out

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8 The War On Drugs – Red Eyes

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7 Girl Band – Lawman

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6 Houndmouth – For No One

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5 Dust From 1000 Yrs – Smoke Em Up

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4 Water Liars – Swannanoa

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3 The Amazing Snakeheads – Where Is My Knife

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2 Horse Thief – Little Dust

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1 Damien Jurado – Metallic Cloud

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Don’t forget to check out the rest of the countdown – 100 – 81 here, 80 – 61 here, 60 – 41 here, and 40 – 21 here.

Tomorrow sees our favourite albums of the year, and from Sunday the MM contributors individual best-of lists.

Mad Mackerel's Best of the Months: March to May (Part 1)

Previously we’ve just offered Best of the Month postings with downloads, but that excludes so many quality songs we’ve decided to just post our favourite tracks – irrespective of whether they are free to download or not. If you like them add them to your Spotify playlists or do the old fashioned thing and download them from iTunes, Bandcamp, or wherever.

Anyway, with a bit of ground to make up here is the first part of March to May’s selections. Nearly forty tracks – enjoy!

Twin Berlin – Buzzkill
Heavy, slow burnin’ garage punk.

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The Ukiah Drag – Dirt Trip
Wields a heavy creep-beat that cleans your dusty clock and takes you for a bourbon afterwards – self-conceited punk hypnosis.

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La Sera – Losing To The Dark
Sounds like Lesley Gore fronting Black Flag – in a good way.

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Dan Baker – Pistol In My Pocket
Skeletal, tortured alt-country and folk delivered with Baker’s mix of wavering, unforgiving howls and whispered confessionals.

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S. Carey – Crown The Pines
Glorious, delicately cascading folk.

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Secret Colours – Heavy & Steady
Bass-heavy single showcases the quintet’s maturing psych-pop sensibilities.

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Wooden Wand – Dambuilding
Beautifully judged slice of acoustic melancholy unhurriedly delivered with a slightly crestfallen air that imbues the narrative with a gorgeous poignancy.

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Benjamin Shaw – Goodbye, Kagoul World
Ramshackle psychedelic folk with a healthy splash of darkly black humour.

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WATERS – Got To My Head

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Split Screens – Close My Eyes
Over a backdrop of lush vocal harmonies, meditative fingerpicking and expressive brush work, delves into the theme of escapism and the freedom of letting go.

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Tele Novella – Trouble In Paradise
Charming, mellow indie psych-pop and subtle vocal harmonies.

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Donkeys – Scissor Me Cigs
Laid back, easy-going, breezy country tinged rock.

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Paradise – Born And Bound
Vintage-inspired, nuggets style garage-psych.

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The Leaf Library – The Greater Good
Hypnotic, krautrock disco, which is reminiscent of Stereolab at their best.

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Cate Le Bon – Sisters

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Timber Timbre – Curtains?!
Insistent groove of disquieting Americana.

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Creepoid – Wet Bread
Slow burn sonics from noise rockers.

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Heart Beach – Hours
Sad, minimal, skuzz pop drone harmonies.

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Amen Dunes – Lilac In Hand
Sweetly resigned vocals are carried along on a simple acoustic strum, piano and deft percussion.

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Brian Jonestown Massacre – What You Isn’t
Grandfathers of modern-psych deliver again.

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The Peach Kings – Be Around
Smooth and smoky vocals above bluesy guitar riffs

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The Orwells – Southern Comfort
Swaggering, infectious lead off track from the much anticipated debut Disgraceland, out on the 3rd June.

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The Delines – I Won’t Slip Up
Smooth, slow moving and sorrowful Americana.

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Horse Thief – Little Dust
Relaxed, undulating slice of Americana that sets expansive, chiming guitars behind an rolling, easy-going vocal.

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Strand Of Oaks – Goshen ’97
A superb full-on, incendiary, ballsy roots-rocker with screaming guitars and relentless percussion.

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Clouder – Lost In Reverie
Romping rock track about a faceless female presence that’s propelled by antsy guitars that morph in and out of surf and psychedelic jangles.

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Dune Rats – Funny Guy
Two and a half minutes of pumped up, guitar-fuelled stoned, garage rock that is impossible to resist.

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Lorelle Meets The Obsolete – Sealed Scene
Get locked into the space rock groove…

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Free Swim – Meal For One
Brilliant track of catchy indie insouciance, scalpel sharp lyrical minutiae, and overall inventive quirkiness.

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The Felice Brothers – Cherry Licorice
Classic ragged, uptempo rocker – no one does this stuff better than the Felices.

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The Vacant Lots – Mad Mary Jones
A full on head rush of punked-up psychedelia.

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CRUISING – You Made Me Do That
As lo-fi and DIY as it comes – grimy, distorted, brooding and depraved.

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Old Smokey – Dead Man’s Pose
An upbeat scorcher with rolling, brushed drums, chanted group vocals, and a clarinet that brings to mind a New Orleans second line.

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Tijuana Bibles – Toledo
Somewhere in between the nostalgic Americana of Tom Waits and the sludgy riffs of the grunge resurgence.

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Triptides – Moonbeams
Dreamy, meandering slice of psych-rock with hints of surf.

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And a couple of new ones to finish off…the new single Mainline from indie rockers Teleman, and the driving, hook-filled urgency of PUJOL’s Circles.

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Download all

Horse Thief - Little Dust

Perhaps a perfect companion and counterpoint to our earlier post on the Delines, is this relaxed, undulating slice of Americana from Horse Thief.

Little Dust is taken from upcoming album Fear In Bliss (from which we’ve already given you the brilliant I Am The Bear), and sets expansive, chiming guitars behind an rolling, easy-going vocal that we’re guessing is destined to become a live singalong of epic proportions.

Fear In Bliss is out on Bella Union in April.

Videos of the Day

Watch videos for Horse Thief’s brilliant track I Am The Bear, a stunning intimate acoustic perfomance from SXSW by Iron & Wine, a gorgeous Phantoms & Friends from Old Man Canyon (free EP download from Bandcamp here), and to finish the jittery, unsettling Want by The Soft Moon gets a video to match…

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