There’s plenty of new music around to create one more
playlist for 2013. New bands such as The Wild Feathers and Love Inks make an
appearance in this compilation while established groups such as Travis,
Luscious Jackson and Mazzy Star return to the new music fold. Also back for
another round are The Naked and Famous, Cults, Tennis, and Phantogram, while
remixers RAC composed some songs of their own.
Artic Monkeys returns to its rock roots, Okkervil River finds a wider
musical net with a nostalgic theme, and Broken Bells provide a glimpse of the
Check out all this and more,
plus a quiz about the longevity of some of the bands. Link to listen here
**EXTRA CREDIT IF YOU CAN NAME EVERY BAND THAT EXISTED IN
THE 90s -- WITH BONUS POINTS FOR ONES THAT HARK BACK TO THE 80s (ANSWER AT THE
END OF THIS POST!)
1. "Let Go (featuring
Kele & MDNR)" – RAC
RAC stands for Remix Artist Collective, a group of
international musicians dedicated to the craft of melody-driven remixes.
After over 200 indie-focused tracks, founder
Allen Anjos, a native of Portugal living in Portland, has released an EP of
original songs, Don’t Talk To,
including this bouncy tune “Let Go.”
2. "Down Down the
Deep River" – Okkervil River
This song is from The
a concept album by Austin’s indie folk rock band Okkervil
River (its seventh).
Lead singer Will
Sheff mines his childhood in New Hampshire for an unflinching look back, which
takes the six-piece into a new direction of tuneful melodies via captured images
from the past.
New York based indie pop duo Brian Oblivion and Madeline
Follin weathered their split as a couple by writing songs for their second album,
appropriately called Static.
“High Road” finds the dreamy low-fi sound intact as the band continues on.
4. "Are You Ready?" –
Luscious Jackson is back in the swing of things with that
signature NYC swagger after toying with a reunion for years. As if asking the
fans, “Are You Ready?,” this revamped quartet clearly is -- rocking full
throttle through a fourth album, Magic
“Antiphon” is the title track of the fourth album by Texas folk
rock band Midlake, the first with guitarist Eric Pulido taking over lead
Majestic harmonies carry this
quintet through a trajectory of emotion alluding to the plight of man, all while
referencing an overthrown orator in ancient Greece.
6. "Hearts Like Ours" – The Naked and Famous
This New Zealand band landed in L.A. after touring the world
to create its sophomore album, In
The swirling heartfelt
chorus of “Hearts Like Ours” conveys lead singer Alisa Xayalith’s personal pain
about losing her mother to breast cancer as a girl.
7. "Holding On for
Life" – Broken Bells
Indie rock duo James Mercer of The Shins and artist-producer
Danger Mouse are getting ready to release another album as Broken Bells, After the Disco.
This single, “Holding
On for Life,” alludes to that past scene with an archetypal falsetto chorus.
Scottish alt quartet Travis emerges after a five-year
absence with its seventh studio album, Where
This song, “Moving,” is
written by bassist Dougie Payne, stretching singer Fran Healy’s vocals to new
heights, although still enabling that trademark emotive warmth.
9. "Black Out Days" – Phantogram
Phantogram is an electronic duo founded by Sarah Barthel and
Josh Carter, friends since teenagers in upstate New York.
“Black Out Days” is an echoing tune off a
self-titled EP with second full album, Voices
10. "Do I Wanna
Know?" – Arctic Monkeys
English indie rock band Arctic Monkeys formed in 2002 and
have explored different genres through their five albums. The latest is, AM,
named for the group initials with a
nod to The Velvet Underground’s VU
Classic hand claps and foot stomps make way for singer Alex Turner’s rapid-fire
delivery in “Do I Wanna Know?”
11. "Mean Streets" – Tennis
Husband and wife duo Tennis, Alaina Moore and Patrick Riley
of Denver, recently released a five-song EP called Small Sound.
establishes a breezy confidence for the couple, as a vintage-tinged ambiance
permeates the song.
“Head On” is a the melodic single from On Oni Pond
, experimental Philly band Man Man’s fifth album since
The multi-instrumental jam plays off the laid back vibe of lead singer
and lyricist Honus Honus.
13. "The Ceiling" –
The Wild Feathers
This Nashville quintet has roots in Texas and Oklahoma,
along a shared love of 70s country rock that saturates their self-titled debut.
The full on vocals in “The Ceiling” convey an infectious chemistry between
these former lead singers.
14. "Outta Sight" – Love Inks
Love Inks is a trio that self-recorded a debut LP, Generation Club,
on a half-inch tape
machine in their hometown of Austin, Texas. Lead singer Sherry LeBlanc croons
over synth beats and key strikes with a pining lustful urgency.
15. "Peace Sword
(Open Your Heart) (featuring Tobacco)" – The Flaming Lips
In typical overboard fashion, The Flaming Lips’ one song
project for the Ender’s Game
soundtrack inspired a four-song EP called Sword.
This characteristically epic tune showcases the
electronic wizardry of Tobacco from Black Moth Super Rainbow with cinematic flair.
16. "If We Were
Banished" – Radar Brothers
Jim Putnam formed indie rock band The Radar Brothers in L.A.
without brothers but with an intention to create songs expressing a universal
The meditative world of “If
We Were Banished” is from the band’s eighth album, simply titled Eight.
17. "California" –
Mazzy Star is back after fifteen years with its fourth
studio album, Seasons of Your Day.
Hope Sandoval’s distinctive languid
owns the proceedings as
vocalist and lyricist, while composer David Roback’s guitar humbly makes way.
DID YOU GUESS EIGHT BANDS? BONUS POINTS IF YOU KNEW THE FLAMING LIPS AND MAZZY STAR GO BACK TO THE 80s…
6. THE FLAMING LIPS – Formed in 1983
8. MAZZY STAR – Formed in 1988