Happy Monday, and welcome to another serving of the Melodic Tonic, vol 20, which features new music cocktails to get your week started off right. Since the CMJ Music Marathon kicks off this week in New York, let’s get started with two artists who represent that scene before we explore fresh new tunes from Denmark and Wales and a new indie supergroup from sunny California.
Bayonne – “Spectrolite” (Austin, Texas, USA)
Austin, Texas calls itself the live music capital of the world. It’s also the home base of Roger Sellers – aka Bayonne – who will re-release his 2014 album, Primitives, early next year on a new label, Mom + Pop Music. The multi-instrumentalist creates lush electronic music of layered soundscapes that are both energizing and soothing. If that seems like a paradox, perhaps it’s because Sellers is well-versed in both indie folk and electronica, thus the rebranding of the latter under the new name. The re-release of Primitives includes new material which he will likely perform this week during his three CMJ events. He returns to Austin to play Fun Fun Fun Festival next month.
Seratones – “Necromancer” (Shreveport, Louisiana, USA)
Another act playing at CMJ this week is Seratones. Hailing from Shreveport, Louisiana, the group had only been together for a year or so when they entered the 2015 NPR Tiny Desk Concert contest. Their bold sound – a mixture of pure rock & roll with elements of punk and soul – quickly brought them attention and a recording contract. Lead singer AJ Haynes has a voice so powerful you wonder if she ever needs a microphone. Combined with the scorching guitar, bass, and drums (from Connor Davis, Adam Davis, and Jesse Gabriel, respectively), Seratones have an undeniably fresh vitality and a musical chemistry that you’d expect from a band who have been together for decades. They have toured with equally energetic bands like Houndmouth and St. Paul & the Broken Bones, but this week they’re playing at two CMJ showcase events. Their 7” single Necromancer releases October 16 on Fat Possum Records and is available for pre-order from the label’s online store.
Lowly – “Fire” (Aarhus, Denmark)
Certain songs get into your head and under your skin with such dizzying speed that it stuns your senses. This is the case with Lowly, the eclectic indie noise pop group from Aarhus, Denmark. They cite influences like Cocteau Twins and Tame Impala, but their shimmering sound and infectious harmonies share similarities with the likes of First Aid Kit and Lucius. This track was catchy at first listen and quickly became addictive, thus requiring a dozen repeated spins. Have a listen and see if it captivates your ears the same way. Their upcoming EP, Sink Way Into Me, comes out October 30 on Bella Union.
Chain of Flowers – “Crisis” (Cardiff, Wales)
Cooler autumn temps and brooding grey skies: that’s the perfect weather for cranking up loud, brooding music. Chain of Flowers – the post-punk/shoegaze six-piece outfit from Cardiff, Wales – have the perfect song to fit the mood on just such days. This intense single from their upcoming debut EP has an urgent energy and is a powerful wall of sound. The group spent 96 sleepless hours recording the eight tracks, and their focus is evident here. It begins as a full-on sonic storm of swirling guitars and driving percussion and doesn’t let up. They’re releasing the self-titled EP this week on Alter Records, and it’s available for pre-order from the label’s online store.
COROMANDELLES – “The Project” (Long Beach, California, USA)
What do you get when you combine members of The Shins, Modest Mouse, Cold War Kids and Tijuana Panthers? If it sounds like an unlikely combination conjured in a hazy dream, then don’t pinch yourself. You’re not California dreaming. Fresh out of Long Beach, California, comes this new punk/pop collaboration called Coromandelles. This single is from their debut effort, Late Bloomers’ Bloomers. It’s out October 20 on 12” vinyl via Porch Party Records and on cassette via Burger Records. With vocals and guitar from Daniel Michicoff (Tijuana Panthers), Matt Maust (Cold War Kids) on bass, and drums from Joe Plummer (The Shins, Modest Mouse, Cold War Kids), Coromandelles is guaranteed to energize your Monday. Take a listen.
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