[Indie/Chill/Pop] Craft Spells – Breaking Against The Tide

craftspells
Craft Spells
Breaking The Angle Against The Tide

Craft Spells have unveiled the first track off their sophomore album Nausea.

“Breaking The Angle Against The Tide” is the first piece of new material from the group since the release of their Gallery EP in 2012, and four years since the release of their debut album Idle Labor. The brainchild of Justin Vallesteros, Craft Spells took a brief hiatus following Vallesteros’ relocation to San Francisco. A move he had hoped would help shake a bad case of writer’s block. Vallesteros replaced his world of social media addiction and guitar-centric writing in favor of listening to Yellow Magic Orchestra records and learning to play the piano. The result is an album filled with beautiful soundscapes of weighty lyrics and rich, lavish melodies.

“Breaking The Angle Against The Tide” is a symphony of sonic poetry. Featuring echoing vocals immersed in an ocean of swelling string arrangements, the track will pull you out to sea with its calming composition that drifts over a tidal wave of electric melodies that rise and fall on the line between chaos and serenity.

Craft Spells will release Nausea June 10 via Brooklyn-based label Captured Tracks. Grab a FREE download of “Breaking The Angle Against The Tide” here.

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[Country Rock] Southern – Shout It

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Southern
Shout It

Slip on your dancin’ boots and get ready for a shit-kickin’ good time. Yeah, we’re a little late to the party, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still write about Belfast born Southern.

These northern Irelanders have crafted a sound all too familiar to the southern US. Harnessing some twangy, bluesy guitar riffs and a simplistic drum beat, this high energy, smile-inducing track will have you cracking open a bottle of Budweiser and dancing through the dive bar.

Surprisingly out on a Kitsune compilation called New Faces, you can also pick this up on their four track EP. We recommend you do so, and follow it up with a 12′er and a pint of Jack.

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[Epic] JASIA – Inverbatim

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JASIA
Inverbatim

Josiah Willows, aka JASIA, has a knack for creating larger than life soundscapes. In his debut track, this classically trained producer has developed a sound which falls somewhere in a hybrid of Sigur Ros and Tycho.

Seeing as how this Melbourne/London based artist studied classical voice, guitar and violin performing in orchestras in earlier years, it’s easy to understand how he could have such a natural gift for deriving bass driven electronic beats overlaid with orchestral layers of synthesisers, strings, guitars on a bed of vocal samples.

Press play and get lost in this one, ninjas. It won’t be difficult to do so.

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[MP3 Playlist] Indie Dojo (March 2013 Round #4)

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Work. Most of us gotta do it. Some of us love it, most of us hate it. If you love it, wonderful. Here’s a little playlist to add icing to that cake. If you hate it, we’re sorry. Here’s a little playlist to help you get through however many more hours you have until you break free. Rain or shine. We’re here for you.

Cousin Marnie
Youve Been Fooling Me Baby
Rodrigo Amarante
Hourglass
Goodbye Chanel
KALIFORNIA
River Tiber
Atlantis
Kyle Woods & Ryne Estwing
Nothing Left To Give
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[Indie/Dream Pop] Merchandise – Figured Out

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Merchandise
Figured Out

Tampa-based quartet Merchandise are streaming their upcoming single “Figured Out” and it’s a thing of beauty.

The dream pop, former punk, outfit recently signed to UK label 4AD and is getting ready to release their third full-length LP, the follow-up to 2012’s Children of Desire. Since it’s release the band have also made new member, Elsner Nino (formerly of the hardcore band Shoxx), their permanent drummer.

With Nino providing a heavy backbone of beats, Merchandise’s blend of melancholic acoustic melodies and pristine, incisive electric guitar riffs make “Figured Out” a euphoric and rapturous pop tune. One listen to the track and it’s easy to pick up on Merchandise’s influences, ranging everywhere from bands like The Smiths and Echo & The Bunnymen to psychedelic labelmates Deerhunter and Twin Shadow. “Figured Out” will be released on April 19 as part of this year’s Record Store Day via 540 Records.

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[Indie Pop] Lykke Li – No Rest for the Wicked

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Lykke Li
No Rest For The Wicked

“… I, I follow, I follow you, deep sea baby, I follow you…”

Sound familiar? With the innumerable remixes and covers for “I Follow Rivers” these past few years, it’s hard to remember that it’s been a long 36 months since we were enthralled by a honey of an artist, Lykke Li. The 28 year old Swedish beauty and singer introduced the first piece of her three-part work in 2008 with Youth Novels, followed by her second album, Wounded Rhymes back in 2011. She now returns with the new-fangled single, “No Rest for the Wicked” off her upcoming third studio album, I Never Learn. The track induces a deep cinematic vibe, leaving us to wonder and yearn for the story she will croon to conclude her trilogy, which began with her first two albums nearly six years ago.

We’ll learn the ending to her tale when I Never Learn drops in North America this coming May 6th. Meanwhile, we can piece together 2 of the 9 fragments.

Watch the release of the painstakingly exquisite video, “Love Me Like I’m Not Made of Stone”, and follow up with the lead single “No Rest for the Wicked.”

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[Grunge Rap] Jez Dior – Who Drank My Whiskey?

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Jez Dior
Who Drank My Whiskey?

Someone’s harnessing their inner Kurt Cobain and his name is Jez Dior. Taking a turn to the 90′s, Jezzy has served up a piping hot plate of sounds that will take you back to your younger years. “Who Drank My Whiskey” is a far departure from what we’re used to hearing from this often emotional rapper, yet as far as principal, it’s right on par.

The tune as a whole will take you for surprise. This isn’t a beat-centric, cinematic tune as what you’ve come to known from this LA based lyricist. If you’re expecting something similar to “Love me to Death” or “Candles,” know that you’re not going to find it here. However, this deviation from his artistic mean is a welcome refresher and a spiritual omen of what Jez’s going through in his development as an individual and artist.

The video that accompanies it is already stirring up some controversy, getting covered in a boldly worded slam piece by The Gloss, a female-centric online publication. Before we get into that, we’ve come to find out the meaning behind the video, which completely fits what we already know about this indie hip hop artist. Appreciating the fact that his music is often darkly stirring, displaying voids in his life through his artistry, we’ve always known him to be a deep thinker, capable of crafting songs that are far from any mainstream messaging.

While we’re not experts in the dissection of cinematic art, we can make the connection to what Jez, his director (who is a female), and his producer (who is a female) say they were trying to accomplish. However, Samantha from the Gloss felt different. Without requesting any additional information or a quote from Jez’s team or the director of the video, she brazenly identifies him as a “Hipster Rapper,” attempting to discredit him based on his exterior appearance before the reader can even get into her argument, which ends up covering a very sensitive issue. Obviously striking a nerve, she took a break from writing about Cameron Diaz topless photos and Lindsey Lohan’s sex list, to speak her mind.

Jez’s team quickly responded to the her post, commenting on the stream. Check out what the producer of the video had to say in response:

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