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Dayeater Drops New Single "Sweet Earth"

Psych rock trio, Dayeater, stay true to their roots with their latest single, “Sweet Earth.” The track pays homage to classic bands such as Black Sabbath and AC/DC while sprinkling in their own unique psychedelic twist. “Sweet Earth” features piercing vocals, bluesy guitar licks and bolstering drums, along with some very sharp production from Chris “Frenchie” Smith at the Bubble Studios.
 
Within the first thirty seconds of the song, they manage to transport you straight into the 1970’s with Jesse Lee’s vintage guitar sound and gritty vocals. Landry Jackson’s drums remain simple and understated — yet serve as a powerful driving force to the song. Complementing all of these parts perfectly are Christopher Brockett’s groovy bass lines and nuanced vocal harmonies that adds a polished layer to the track’s catchy hook.
 
As soon as you think you know the direction the song is going, they throw a curveball with multiple clever breakdowns.  The dynamics range from loud and thrashy to soft and sweet, with an outro reminiscent of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity.” The killer instrumentation is paired with thought-provoking lyrics that speak out against humanity’s inability to protect the earth and the environment.
 
It’s clear that Dayeater’s sound is locked-in and their artistic integrity never seems to waver. They are a true rock and roll band and their latest single perfectly embodies what they are all about. Listen to “Sweet Earth” on Bandcamp today!

- Quinn Donoghue

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The Automatic Sun Drop New Single "Away"

 

"Away," the new Automatic Sun single, is the song you didn't know you needed after living through the year 2020. And Lord Jeebus what a year that was. If you're anything like me, you've been waiting your little heart out for new music that possibly reflects how we all feel inside after what last year put us through. This is one of those very songs, my friends.

 

The title "Away" gives you a first glance into the full meaning of this song, because, yeah, we all sort of feel like we've been away. The lyrics tell the story of someone basically being forced to stay where they are, while all the while feeling a longing to break free from their personal prison. While it could be easy to see this song as your typical "I miss you" ballad, personally I feel like the meaning is more of an expression of feeling trapped in quarantine — and that all too familiar longing for the world to be back normal again. Even the lyrics "take a year" at the end of each chorus is a nod to the year that pretty much all of us lost.

 

With a sound reminiscent of the 60 acid pop vibe making its way through Austin, it's hard not to be taken into Mark Webb's emotional journey into the creation of this song. I can hear influences from The Beatles and even Cage The Elephant. It's easy to feel like you're basking in the sun on a mild spring afternoon when this song plays. 

 

These guys have an EP, and 2 singles released on their Bandcamp page, so there's enough music to wet your whistle. With the dark melancholy tone of "Away" and lyrics deep enough to rival anything out there right now, I'm certainly looking forward to any new music these guys have to offer.

 

- Michael Lee

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Mobley Releases New EP “Young and Dying in the Occident Supreme”

Right from the title, Mobley's new release is a mouthful. “Young and Dying in the Occident Supreme” has a great deal to say about America, capitalism, religion and sundry Big Ideas™.

 

It doesn't always hit. Mobley apparently recorded “Occident Supreme” sojourning in Thailand. You can kinda tell. Several tracks have an ineffable parochial “college freshman comes to Thanksgiving after a year abroad and has Ideas” dullness. The top track in particular sounds like a barely produced spoken-word take on your least favorite TA's favorite Medium article. The politics of “You Are Not The Hero Of This Story” are true and righteous altogether. It just doesn't slap.

 

Thankfully, it's a rare misstep. Start at track two, the danceable but lethal “James Crow,” and this release stops being homework. From “Crow” onward, Mobley's music lives up to its lyrical pieties. The hooks are tight, the grooves are luscious and playful, soulful vocals sweeten even the most earnest lyrical excesses. If anything, a track or two errs on the side of hooky pop and romantic angst rather than depth.

 

So yeah, “Young and Dying in the Occident Supreme” is a bit all over the place. But, and this is everything, it's not boring. “James Crow” is a standout, in contention for top tracks so far this year. Even “You Are Not The Hero Of This Story,” the album's one inarguable miss, swings for the fences. Mobley's EP is a catchy, urgent and utterly timely attempt at agit-pop, something lacking from the otherwise utterly politicized American conversation of 2021. If Mobley's music is more earnest than its cultural moment, that can only be to its credit. It's music that gives a damn.

 

- Matt Salter

 

“Young and Dying in the Occident Supreme” dropped on February 19, by way of Last Gang Records.

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Alex Maas of the Black Angels Cultivates Compassion with “Too Much Hate”

Alex Maas, of Austin’s beloved Black Angels, brings us this delightful dirge of a song following his debut solo album, Luca, released December 2020. Luca, named after and informally dedicated to Maas’ first born son, carries the same psychedelia undertones we associate with Maas, but with a softer touch. 

 

Maas says the new music video, “is a glimpse of what a tour on this record would look like had we not been in a pandemic.” Filmed in an opera house in downtown Bastrop, the video features Maas and his amp, his band and collaborators in a spacious, empty music hall with dim red and pale green lighting. As the hypnotic rhythm marches on, the video pans across the masked musicians, a lonely Ficus tree in the corner and a charming Texas quilt pinned to the wall. Maas’ signature dark vocals fill up and echo through the grand hall.

 

Too Much Hate” sings of healing the cancers in our societies and circles, “There’s too much hate and not enough loving. There’s too much killing, honey.” Maas is not blatantly topical, but the song gently reminds us of the hate we’ve collectively witnessed in the last year. Is it the spirit of hate that perpetuates the disproportionate number of deaths in vulnerable populations from disease? From gun violence and racism? Acknowledging hate affirms the need for love. In a statement, Maas says the song “attempts to identify things that make the world more beautiful,” evidenced in his lyrics, “Sing for your children. Empower women.” He repeats, “Don’t shoot from your hip. Don’t shoot from your hip,” a cowboy idiom and cautionary reminder for all to take heed.  

 

Rather than commiserating about all that is wrong and broken, Maas’ new song is a call for solutions. Although there is a slight air of melancholy, the psych rocker sheds beams of hope to uplift morale through music. Alex Maas’ full statement and insight into the song are listed on Levitation’s website, where you can also purchase tickets for the streaming event later this month. 

 

 

- Mel Green

 

 

Check out the new song and video from Alex Maas’ “Too Much Hate.” The music video release precedes a full performance film streaming on Levitation Sessions on March 27th at 7PM CST. 

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More Eaze Explores Ambient Emotionality With New Album “yearn”

More so than any other Austin musician, More Eaze (solo project of Mari Maurice) effortlessly navigates the contemporary experimental music landscape. More Eaze is a prolific anti-composer whose unending stream of bafflingly diverse releases over the years has explored the fluidity between seemingly contradictory elements—primarily pop, minimalism and noise. In addition to her impressive solo oeuvre, she is a familiar face in the Orange Milk Records extended universe who also works in various capacities as a producer/multi-instrumentalist with a multitude of other artists: Claire Rousay, Fibril, The Octopus Project, Slomo Drags and Thor & Friends, just to name a few.

 

Keeping track of More Eaze lore can be intimidating, but lucky for you, “yearn” is her most soothing album in recent memory and is an excellent introduction to the more pastoral side of her unquestionably unique sound. Whereas last year’s “Mari” was a confessional epic, channeling influences as disparate as 100 gecs and Robert Ashley, “yearn” provides a concise set of ethereal soundscapes that are as melancholically comfy as the album title suggests. This is music for rainy days and dog walks, vulnerability and contemplation, maybe for when you’re a little worried about everything, but not anxious about much. It’s very pretty.

 

While each track is distinct enough to stand out individually, they function more so as movements of a broader composition. The first track “galv” begins with a subtle room tone reminiscent of the audio quality of an iPhone memo. A modulated synth warbles into the mix and is soon interpolated by hushed autotune whispers, then accompanied by gentle synth pad arpeggios throughout the latter half of the track. Delicate kalimba plucks on “in dreams” lay a new age-y groundwork for understated electroacoustics and deceptively complex synth counterpoint, and the captivating “priority” features ambient artist Ben Bondy, whose synth washes and wistful vocal harmonies beautifully compliment More Eaze’s American primitivist acoustic guitar stylings. 

 

The aptly titled “leave” serves as “yearn”’s clear-headed conclusion. On this track, More Eaze’s signature autotuned vocals carry the same gravitas as some of Frank Ocean’s most sensitive moments, and her masterful violin drones are as cinematic as something you might hear in the iconic film scores of a later Paul Thomas Anderson movie. However as soon as you’ve become fully immersed in these rich textures, an aquatic field recording takes over and you suddenly realize that you’ve been submerged the whole time. Another spacial pivot, and you are now eavesdropping on a domestic scene as dishes and silverware clank from across the room. Mari can be heard asking someone, presumably her partner (who illustrated the lovely album art), “do you want a cherry?” to a muffled reply. I think they're making cocktails. It’s a deeply charming moment which almost makes you forget how fearful of playfulness most “Art Music'' can be, and it acts as an effective transition for the listener back into the world of everyday life. 

 

Chicago’s Lillerne Tapes released “yearn” on Bandcamp Friday, a monthly event which gives artists the opportunity to receive 100% of proceeds from album purchases. While this is a very welcome practice, it’s ultimately a small consolation for musicians whose industry is systematically dominated by the value-sucking poverty royalties of Spotify. It’s an industry crisis and, without glossing over it or downplaying the enormity of this broader social situation, More Eaze’s music chooses to channel a monastic aura, suggesting a less alienated world where artistic practice is allowed to explore itself more freely. “yearn” is a simple release, but it’s an important moment in a thrilling career.

 

- Blake Robbins

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