Music, Singles, The Revue — January 30, 2017 at 5:25 am

The Matinee January 30th

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Start the week on the right foot with The Matinee January 30th edition. As usual, we have new music from several bands and artists that you really, really ought to know.

 

Charlotte & Magon – “The Game” (Paris, France)

RIYL: Ariel Pink, Connan Mockasin, Tame Impala

Over the past five, six years, stoner rock has experienced a huge revival. Most have taken the hazy, delirious approach, but French duo Charlotte & Magon have opted for a more groovy, psychedelic pop sound. Their latest single, “The Game”, exemplifies their smooth, quirky aesthetics. This is song is so good. It feels like one is traveling down the rabbit hole, but the journey is a tripped-out, funky affair and the destination is the dance floor. The song, however, holds much deeper meaning, as Magon sings about gender and the silliness of the roles assigned to men and women.

The single is out now via Echo Orange. View the quirky video on YouTube.

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Joel Gion – “Tomorrow” (San Francisco, USA)

RIYL: Rolling Stones, Kurt Vile, The Doors

Fans of The Brian Jonestown Massacre will know who Joel Gion is, as the San Francisco-based artist and musician has long been the band’s percussionist. Few, though, will know that Gion has released one solo album, and number two is on the way this spring. The lead single from the record is “Tomorrow”, which, despite its name, is retro – and awesome at that.

While there is an air of The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Gion has adopted more of a classic, psychedelic-rock sound. The guitar riffs are clean, the melody is smooth and extremely catchy, and Gion’s vocals are crisp and easygoing. His songwriting is stellar, and the song offers the perfect anthem for today’s world. It is about looking ahead instead of behind and doing what we can to make our lives better. Guess there’s one thing he’s taken from his Anton Newcombe and TBJM – staying optimistic in uncertain times.

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King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – “Sleep Drifter” (Melbourne, Australia)

RIYL: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard (of course)

Australia’s King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard are unquestionably one of the best psychedelic-rock bands on the planet. They are also one of the industry’s hardest working bands, having already released eight records in six years. This year, the Melbourne-based outfit is going to try to do something no other band has done – release five albums in one year with each one sounding different from the other.

The first record will be Flying Microtonal Banana, and the band has already shared the really weird lead single. The third song from the album is “Sleep Drifter”, which is a surprisingly number. Instead of the full throttle affair we’ve come to love about the band, they slow things down and channel George Harrison. This is hazy, dreamy, kaleidoscope, psychedelic rock, and a song to completely get lost in. Given the lyrics, you might feel you are a cobra being enchanted and hypnotized by a snake charmer.

Flying Microtonal Banana will be unveiled on February 24th via Flightless Records and ATO Records.

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizzard are Stu Mackenzie, Joe Walker, Eric Moore, Ambrose Kenny-Smith, Lucas Skinner, Cook Craig, and Michael Cavanagh.

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Kingdom of Birds – “Asa Dreams Of Broken Social Scene” (Toronto, Canada)

RIYL: Broken Social Scene, A Sunny Day in Glasgow, Lush

Kingdom of Birds are kids. They literally are kids. Three of them are only fourteen years old – Ása (vocals/guitar), Brighid (vocals/guitar/keys/more), and Zeul (bass). The other is nine-year old Sam, the drum prodigy. Yet when hearing their music, such as their new single, “Asa Dreams Of Broken Social Scene”, the impression is that they are at least a college band. Instead, these teenagers and boy (Sam isn’t even a pre-teen) have crafted a single that sounds like the indie-pop of, well, late-career Broken Social Scene. The track is catchy and awfully smooth. The harmonies are dreamy, and the instrumentation is really tight and cool. While many young bands would write songs about things teenagers do, the Toronto-based quartet share their aspiration to be as great as one of Canada’s legendary collectives. If they continue to make music like this, they undoubtedly will one day achieve the success of their idols.

“Asa Dreams Of Broken Social Scene” is from the band’s debut EP, EP. Hear it on SoundCloud.

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L.A. Witch – “Brian” (Los Angeles, USA)

RIYL: Death Valley Girls, Velvet Underground & Nico, The Brian Jonestown Massacre

L.A. Witch are one of those bands that we often ask ourselves, “Why aren’t they more popular?” Then we realize that they don’t necessarily make “radio-friendly” music. Instead, they’ve constantly blown us away with their super-charged post-punk and biting lyrics. For their newest song, however, they slow things down and head more into a ’60s/’70s psychedelic realm.

“Brian” is surprisingly an intimate number. The tempo has been considerably decelerated, as Sanade Sanchez’s guitar feels like it is gently weeping. Bassist Irita Pai and drummer Ellie English, meanwhile, turn the rhythm section into a heartbeat to echo the pain being emoted in Sanchez’s piercing vocals. There is still plenty of reverb and hints of grit, but L.A. Witch have shown a tender side and it’s really great.

The single is available as a 7″ via Greenway Records. Get it here.

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Livingmore – “Really Mean It” (Los Angeles, USA)

RIYL: Angel Olsen, Blondie, Margaret Glaspy

Seems like everyday we come across a band that has us saying, “Why haven’t I heard of them before?” Today’s winner is Livingmore. Formed nearly three years ago, the Los Angeles-based quartet have been building an army of supporters thanks to their groovy pop-rock approach. And if you’re like us and trying to catch up, their newest single, “Really Mean It”, is the perfect introduction.

Part Angel Olsen, part Blondie, the song is really, really good. It is groovy and infectious, making you want to shake your hips to the lush melody. An edginess also lingers in the song, particularly in Alex Moore’s vocals as she tells the story of a person seeking to get out. A person searching for the courage to speak his mind and move forward. We’ve all been this person and in many ways still are, and Livingmore have given us an anthem to call our own.

The song is from their forthcoming, debut album, which should be released this spring or summer. The band also shared an animated video, and it can be viewed on YouTube.

Livingmore are Alex Moore (vocals/guitar), Spencer Livingston (vocals/guitar), Mike Schadel (drums/keys), and Bryan Dobbs (bass).

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Meatbodies – “Haunted History” (Los Angeles, USA)

RIYL: Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard

On their self-titled album, Meatbodies had us endlessly yelling, “F*ck yeah!” The LP was psychedelic-rock perfection. It has been over two years since that great record, but fans won’t have to wait much longer for the next one to drop. To tease us on what is to come, the LA-based band share the album’s latest single, “Haunted History”.

This track is gnarly. It’s not the head-thrasher as “Tremmors” or “Mountain”; instead, it is more sinister, gritty, and mind-altering. The song is Thee Oh Sees mixed with Richard Swift, offering a number that still rocks but embeds itself much more deeply into our soul. It’s trippy, but more in a creepy, eerie, and frightening way. The soundscape is perfect for this story about the encroachment of religion and laws on individual freedom. Pretty awesome if you ask us.

Meatbodies’ new album, Alice, which promises to be a concept album about “sex, politics, and religion”, drops February 10th via In The Red Records. Meatbodies are Chad Ubovich (guitar/lead vocals), Patrick Nolan (guitar), Ryan Moutinho (drums), and Killian LeDuke (bass).

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RYDER – “Nirvana” (Los Angeles, USA)

RIYL: Vérité, MS MR, SKOTT

Nearly 18 months ago, RYDER released her debut single, “Pretty Little Gangster”, which made her an instant, online star. She even caught our attention with her BANKS-like approach but thoughtful and expressive songwriting. She would release two more singles afterwards, and her star intensified with each song. Now after a short break, this young, future star is back with another great song, “Nirvana”.

The production work on the track is stellar, as RYDER and her band take a more restrained approach to allow her vocals to shine through. This is so important because the LA-based singer-songwriter has once again shared a great story. While the theme is familiar (about undying love), RYDER challenges her partner to express his love. She is not seeking material items or fancy dinners, but real emotion and intimacy. These are things that every relationship needs to survive, not the frivolous things that other artists tell you. Hopefully someone will sign this young woman soon so that everyone can hear her message.

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