People’s Temple return, 60s swagger fully intact. This go-around, and here’s hoping the band catches the big-stage attention they so clearly deserve, the band dips the pinky toe in to the bluesier side of 60s, upping the rough-and-tumble quotient with gritty back-barroom riffs and a snappy backbeat. It’s tight and nasty and a clear deviation from the more space-garage of album past.
More For The Masses is out on HoZac now.
There is an element of facing a firing squad in this new track by Nice Face. You tie a bandana around your eyes and light a cigarette and press your back against the cinder block wall warmed by the sun. You close your eyes and take a deep breath, the roar of a sonic machine gun already building in your ears. Take a deep gulp of fresh, silent air, because the Nice Face barrage of fuzzed out bullets and whining bursts of high-pitched guitar are apart to tear you to shreds. When it’s done, and it doesn’t take long, slump down to the ground and take stock of your bearings, you might be missing a tone or two.
Nice Face’s new album Horizon Fires is out on HoZac May 29th.
Nice Face – You’re So Dramatic
The Band in Heaven, as a moniker, makes me think of Richard Danko and Richard Manuel smoking joints on a poofy cloud with a stereotypical bearded God figure tsking them from atop his bigger, more lightning bolted cloud. As always (literally always) The Band in Heaven throws my tinny expectations on the ground. This has nothing to do with alt-country forefathers, this is pulsing, fist pumping, face-kicking psych rock in all its uncheck, uncouth glory. The motorcycle-engine bass-line, the whine of sound that pushes it all forward, the feeling that some psych vacuum has been punched in to the atmosphere, and this hurtling bit of rock is what comes whistling on out.
The 7″ for this song and it’s drone-core sibling “Sludgy Dreams” is out on HoZac now.
The Band in Heaven – Sleazy Dreams
Chicago seemingly has a nexus of talent somewhere deep in its cow-stained corridors that every once in a while opens up and allows another amazing, three-chord face-melting garage-pop band to step forth in to reality. This go around HoZac has waited patiently next to the flickering void and grabbed the newest material from the downright awesome Heavy Times. I don’t want to get impaled here for my lack of knowledge, but Heavy Times isn’t about complication and depth. This is garage + pop + distortion + good times + whining guitar solos and all of that equals an absolute torso punch of fun.
“Skull Hair” is out on the band’s second 7″ for HoZac now.
Heavy Times – Skull Hair
It’s always interesting me to parse together the inspirations inherent in every piece of music I post on this site, especially as I get older and the inspirations for musicians become closer to my own heart. On first listen The People’s Temple seem to be mixing the paint piles of a slew of bands from the late 60s to the early 70s, dousing it in fuzz turpentine and then throwing it on the canvas. But the vocals, oh the vocals, take a futuristic step from these well trod paths, and all of sudden, I’m hearing tones of Styx. The bold, reach-for-the-heavens sort of earnestness on the chorus, makes me think of the final alien-rife close of “Sail Away” pushed through the pastry sieve of modern garage. And though the combination sounds like a vomit jellybean, it works, magnificently well. It’s an 70s psych-rock-surf-punk-80s mash-up, and I don’t even feel nauseous after listening to it.
The People’s Temple will be releasing a full length album on HoZac later in the year.
The People’s Temple – Sons of Stone
This new track by Reading Rainbow is the definition of simple pop. The keyboard in the background wavers between three notes. The lead singers voices combine effortlessly in the foreground, subtly dancing in almost droning vocal range. The drum goes boom-bat-a-boom. And it’s reason why I’ve posted Reading Rainbow three times now on this site: even at their simplest, they write some catchy fucking tunes.
“Always On My Mind” wedges in deep at about the minute mark, when the drums sort of crash against the rocks and all of sudden you’re immersed in a swirling haze of 70s style pianos. Simple as it is, my foot is tapping.
This duo is releasing a new full-length on HoZac on November 23rd, but this little gem comes from the Shaking Through series put out by Philadelphia’s own Weathervane Music.
Reading Rainbow – Always On My Mind
It’s always an interesting bit of progress to observe a band gaining popularity and having, or choosing, to shed some of their more youthful noise trappings. Call it forward momentum or cleaning up one’s act, but Reading Rainbow seems to have tightened up their sound a little on their new track “Wasting Time.” I worry sometimes that the removal of noisy detritus is a form of polishing one’s sound to present a cleaner face to the public, but not in this account. I think Reading Rainbow got their hands on a fancy studio and a some nice equipment and translated their sort of trashy garage-pop in to a more focused bit of garage rock. It hums along a clipping pace and loses nothing of the manic energy this bands so ably batters us with track after track.
Clean it up, just don’t lose the edge.
The album comes out on Hozac in late November.
Reading Rainbow – Wasting Time
Source: Gorilla vs. Bear
I’m so exhausted at this very moment I’m struggling to keep my eyes open, let alone type anything coherent. Thus the sort of spiraling mixed-messages of Nice Face almost seem a salve. There’s a hint of garage or experimental noise lurking in the corners of this song, all leathered up and in need of a shower. Hard hittin’ kick drums, harshly strung electro-gee-tars indicate to the avid listener, that yes, perhaps this is just another thrashy garage track. But when the shuffling drum-machine skitters in to the room, it’s psych-electronica time. We’re looking in to the spinning red eyes of a rock robot gone made, steam bustling from it’s ears, heavy pincers snapping at the air.
You want to turn and run. You want to turn and hug. Just move your feet everybody.
Nice Face – I Want Your Damage