Friday, May 7, 2021

Sierra Ferrell Covers Faron Young

This past Sunday saw another edition of Sierra Ferrell's Pick Your Poison Virtual Concert Series. The theme for this one was Calypso, and it included a cover of Faron Young's 1958 song "Alone With You." Faron Young is an artist I had never heard of before Ferrell's cover, but he was a classic country singer and producer. Ferrell's cover is pretty spot on, and it's just pure classic country. She does inject the song with her own spark, which is what draws us to her music so intensely. She and her band seem to be having an absolute blast, which is what we really want with this type of cover. Plus, they stray from the original with a funkier outro, so stay tuned for that.

You can watch Sierra Ferrell's take on "Alone With You" below. The third and final installment of the Pick Your Poison Virtual Concert Series is May 16 with the theme of Jazz Night at the Basement. You can get a ticket here. For more on Sierra Ferrell, check out the artist's website.

Neighborhood Brats - "Harvey Weinstein (is a symptom)

California's Neighborhood Brats just might be taking the baton from Dead Kennedys. Their new single, "Harvey Weinstein (is a symptom)," is a blisteringly fast thrasy punk song. The song is one minute twenty one seconds of the fastest old school punk you've heard in years with just the slightest hints of X style rockabilly. Just from the title, it's obvious the song is about misogyny and lyrics of "
Closeted mysogyny / Hides the intent / Patriarchal values / Flavor the event" drive that point home. "Harvey Weinstein (is a symptom)" isn't a subtle song by any means, and that's the point of it. 

You can listen to "Harvey Weinstein (is a symptom)" below. Confines of Life is due out May 28 on Dirt Cult Records. You can pre-order a copy here. For more on Neighborhood Brats, find them on Facebook and Bandcamp.

Saint Sister - "Oh My God Oh Canada"

Photo by Ellius Grace

The previous two singles we've covered from Dublin's Saint Sister have been wildly different. "The Place That I Work" was a nearly a capella more traditional Irish folk song, while "Karaoke Song" was total pop. "Oh My God Oh Canada" lands somewhere in the middle. It's more of a folk pop song that leans a little more into pop territory. Although Gemma Doherty is credited as arranger and harpist, so it can't be fully pop. It's this blend of traditional sounds and modern pop that truly make Saint Sister stand out from other artists of the genre.

In a press release, Morgana MacIntyre explains the new song:

“‘Oh My God Oh Canada’ is about the intricacies within your most cherished and complicated relationships. It’s about not knowing where the line is, finding yourself on the wrong side of it and spending months trying to find your way back to the right place. It’s about saying too much and at the same time, nothing at all, giving too much of yourself in one moment but not showing up when you’re needed most. I wrote it about wanting to be a better friend, but knowing I never would be.”

You can watch the video for "Oh My God Oh Canada" below. Where I Should End is due out June 25. The album can be pre-ordered here. For more on Saint Sister, check out their website.

Thursday, May 6, 2021

The Mistons - "Transmission"

In the past, we've mentioned the similarities of The Mistons and Mission of Burma. On their new single, "Transmission," the Portland, OR duo drop any similarities to the Boston legends. "Transmission" may still be post punk, and Sean Croghan may sound similar to Roger Miller, but the new song has this bizarre pop sensibility to it. It's still a noisy and discordant song that most of your co-workers will be repelled by, but it's filled with jangly guitars and maybe even a little hint of melody. There are also some strong hints of early rock 'n' roll as if an early 80's post punk band decided to cover Chuck Berry.

You can listen to "Transmission" below. World of Convenience is due out May 21. You can pre-order a copy here. For more on The Mistons, check out the band on Facebook.

RMBLR - "Main Muscle"

If the press release for RMBLR's "Main Muscle" shows the "lighter side" of the band, I'm almost afraid of what they normally sound like. Sure, "Main Muscle" isn't the softest song out there, but it's still a punk rock song. It reminds me of Rancid, and only the crustiest of punks are going to say Rancid made soft music. RMBLR's new song may be on the pop side of punk, but this might be the heaviest pop punk song you've ever heard. It has roots in bands like the New York Dolls, but with more of a hardcore sneer.

You can watch the video for "Main Muscle" below. The song will be out as a single on May 14. MF/EP is due out in June on Spaghetty Town Records and is available for pre-order here. For more on RMBLR, check out the band's Facebook.

Liz Bills - "Come Back Down to Me"

Photo by Sarah Gates

Under normal circumstances, the latest single from Liz Bills would be far too pop for me. In fact, it still could be. But Bills' charm just exudes from "Come Back Down to Me" so much that I can't resist it. It's unabashedly a pop song, but it has just enough of a rootsy feel to keep even us anti-pop snobs entertained. Bills is just one of those universal talents that can transcend genres and dabble equally between a roots/Americana sound and a more funk/disco one without turning away a single fan. Even if you despise the more poppy stuff we (Jeff) post here, you need to at least check out this one.

You can watch the video for "Come Back Down to Me" below. For more on Liz Bills, check out the artist's website.

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Tristen - "Wrong With You"

Tristen is a long term favorite here at If It's Too Loud..., and her latest single reminds us exactly why. She's moved away from her alt/pop-country sound a while back in favor of a more pop sound, and "Wrong With You" is a pop song, but Tristen lets just the teensiest little bit of her old country roots bleed into this new one. While Jeff tends to be more of the pop guy than I am, Tristen is the rare exception that I can't seem to resist. At a time when a lot of our alt-country favorites are adopting pop music, Tristen is one of the few doing it this well. 

You can watch the video for "Wrong With You" below. Aquatic Flowers is due out on Mama Bird Recording Co. You can pre-order/pre-save your copy here. For more on Tristen, check out the artist's website.

Descendents - "Baby Doncha Know"

Photo via Facebook

The upcoming album from California punk legends Descendents has been in the works since the band first started. The songs were first written back in 1977 to 1980, but most weren't recorded. They started working on the album in 2002, and because of that it includes guitar work from Frank Navetta, who passed away in 2008. Last year Bill Stevenson sent the recordings to Milo Aukerman who recorded vocals at his home.

The first song is "Baby Donchu Know." It's less than a minute, just to prove it's a classic punk song. It has all the drive and aggression of early Descendents, but with much better musicianship. Plus, the band can make things sound much more smooth now. It's exactly what it sounds like: original pop/skater/mall punk but just done with better tools and craft now. In a world where classic punk bands' new albums are usually a disappointment, this new one from the Descendents will be an absolute delight for fans.

You can listen to "Baby Donchu Know" below. 9th & Walnut is due out July 23 on Epitaph Records. You can pre-order/pre-save a copy here. For more on the Descendents, check out the band's website.

Squid - "Pamphlets"

Photo by Holly Whitaker

The latest from Squid is this frenetic eight minute burst of post punk. An eight minute song doesn't exactly sound like the word "burst" could apply, but "Pamphlets" fits that. It's a fast paced song that chugs straight forward while careening at different speeds and paces. "Pamphlets" is a ride. It seems like it's about to explode at times, and then doesn't. Squid are bringing us all with them on this intense and compelling journey. It sounds kind of like if The Dismemberment Plan went more towards psychedelia and post punk than emo.

Drummer/lyricist Ollie Judge says of the new song: It’s about all the rubbish right-wing propaganda you get through your front door. It imagines a person with that as their only source of news being taken over by these pamphlets.

You can watch the video for "Pamphlets" below. Bright Green Field will be out May 7 on Warp Records. You can pre-order/pre-save the album here. For more on Squid, check out the band's website.

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

First Listen: New Releases for 30 April

Artist: Carsie Blanton
Album: Love & Rage
Quick Thoughts: Ken sent this one over and, man, am I glad he did. "Party at the End of the World" is probably my favorite recent song period at this point, and the whole album is a strident listen that isn't afraid to pair fun with its message. Blanton made the most of her quarantine with an album that reflects the age we're in along with an understanding of how things can improve. A great listen for nearly anyone, and a favorite this week.
Songs of Note: "Party at the End of the World," "Down in the Streets," "Sufferin' Fools"

Artist: Dree Leer
Album: Throw Hands
Quick Thoughts: On the first track, I was taken aback by how heavy this felt. By the third track, I was completely won over. This is definitely on the heavier side, but there's a melodic, alt-rock approach to this that grabs you and makes it sound slightly different than the recent listens we've had as well as any of its comparison work. If you give this a listen, give it time - this is an album that ultimately reveals itself over time as opposed to grabbing you from the word go.
Songs of Note: "You Too," "Stutter"

Artist: Rosie Tucker
Album: Sucker Supreme
Quick Thoughts: I really dug Rosie Tucker's last album. I think I called it a little bit oddball, and while I don't think it was taken the way I meant, my intentions were pure - it's a great indie rock album and, to this day, "Lauren" remains a song I consider an all-time favorite. Sucker Supreme definitely builds on the last album and presents a really solid listen that feels like it has more weight. Songs like "Barbara Ann" pack a bit of a punch, and while I chuckled at the title of "For Sale: Ford Pinto," the song itself delivers in a way the car never did. Rosie Tucker deserves to be a household name, and this album should put them on the map if there's any justice.
Songs of Note: "Barbara Ann," "For Sale: Ford Pinto," "Arrow," "Brand New Beast"

Artist: Cake Pop
Album: Cake Pop 2
Quick Thoughts: A hyperpop supergroup of sorts, this album is a quick hit of all your favorite musical concepts into one quick thirty minute package. I really enjoyed this and found plenty to love, but it might be a little tougher for those who aren't already on board with 100 Gecs and the like.
Songs of Note: "Black Rum," "Candy Floss"

Artist: girl in red
Album: if i could make it go quiet
Quick Thoughts: As both Ken and I are men over 40, girl in red is not an act we should be familiar with. She's big on TikTok, huge within the LGBT crowd... not places we're typically involved. Don't let any of that sway you away from girl in red, though: this album is great. It's defiantly honest alt-rock, and I mean that with all sincerity - this would have resonated with me and many of my friends had it come out in 1997 instead of today (insert overall discomfort that Marie Ulven, girl in red in question, was born in 1999 here). Honestly, this album is awesome and you should listen to it. You'll sound "with it" for your kids and get a good listen out of it, too.
Songs of Note: "Serotonin," "You Stupid Bitch," "Did You Come?," "Body and Mind," "Rue"

Artist: Beachy Head
Album: Beachy Head
Quick Thoughts: Probably the closest thing to an indie supergroup through the Graveface Records folks we'll see, this is an effort featuring people from Slowdive, the Flaming Lips, Casket Girls, and more. It's a very hazy, reverb-heavy record, which might be a turnoff to some, but there is a super melodic aspect to this that resonated with me. It's definitely worth a listen, and moreso if you're into the more lo-fi indie stuff.
Songs of Note: "Warning Bell," "All Gone," "Looking for Exits," "Hiddensee"

Of note:

* Crumb - Ice Melt (Some interesting indie/alt folk/psych.)
* NVDES and Fani Lou - Psychomagic (A solid dancy album with a number of highlights.)
* Birdy - Young Heart (Gorgeous singer-songwriter stuff here.)
* Tōth - You and Me and Everything (From one of the members of Rubblebucket, surprisingly light.)
* Marcus Machado - Aquarius Purple
* Paul Jacobs - Pink Dogs on the Green Grass
* The Dirtiest - Sovranista
* Ashley Monroe - Rosegold
* Matt Sweeney and Bonnie Prince Billy - Superwolves
* Roisin Murphy - Crooked Machine
* Sufjan Stevens - Celebrations
* Julia Stone - Sixty Summers
* Flying Lotus - Yasuke
* Manchester Orchestra - The Million Masks of God
* Croatian Amor and Varg2TM - Body of Content
* The Coral - Coral Island
* Bowerbirds - becalmyounglovers
* Teenage Fanclub - Endless Arcade
* Amy Shark - Cry Forever


* Magdalena Bay - Mini Mix, Vol. 2
* Dave Simonett - Orion
* Hey, Ily - Internet Breath
* Kitty Crimes - HILUX
* Fresh - The Summer I Got Good at Guitar

Live albums/Compilations/Reissues:

* Metronomy - The English Riviera (10th Anniversary)
* PJ Harvey - Uh Huh Her - Demos

Also out:

* Cœur de pirate - Perséides
* The Dropkick Murphys - Turn Up That Dial
* Guided by Voices - Earth Man Blues
* Demons - Privation
* Dawn Richard - Second Line