Band Profile: Smallpools

smallpools

If you’re looking for some fun summer jams, and you don’t already have some Smallpools songs on your beach or road trip playlist, you are missing out.

Smallpools is a Los Angeles-based indie band made up of singer Sean Scanlon, guitarist Mike Kamerman, and drummer Beau Kuther.

Smallpools’ music has a fun, party vibe without taking away from content and quality. Fast drums, catchy choruses with strong backing vocals, and creative lyrics come together to make music that will get you up off your feet and dancing.

 

Their first single, “Dreaming” is far and away their most popular song, but if you’re only listening to the chart-toppers, you are missing out on some excellent deeper tracks. Check out other winners like “American Love,” “Street Fight” and “Admission to Your Party.”

The band formed in LA in 2013 and quickly released their first single, “Dreaming” which reached #23 on Billboard’s Alternative Song chart, has continued to be a fan-favorite. They released a self-titled EP with RCA Records shortly after, and a full-length album, LOVETAP! in 2015.

It’s likely you’ve caught their track “Over and Over” from a popular Snapchat promo video, or their most recent single “Run With the Bulls.”

Keep an eye out for Smallpools’ new music, which apparently is coming soon. The band’s website frustratingly gives no concrete info on when music is coming, other than “New music Summer ’17,” so hopefully that means something soon. They’ve also got a tour scheduled for late summer/early fall, so if they are coming to your town, it’s a safe bet for a fun time.

 

[Photo credit]

Advertisements

Blink 182 STILL Putting Out New Music

blink182

While many pop-punk bands of the late 90’s and early 2000’s have come to their natural ends, Blink-182 is powering through, continuing to release new music as they celebrate their 25th anniversary as a band. This Friday (May 19, 2017) Blink-182 released the deluxe version of their newest album, California (released July 1, 2016).

The album, the first since the band’s break with original vocalist/guitarist Tom DeLonge and addition of former Alkaline Trio frontman Matt Skiba,  was already a lengthy one, with 16 tracks totaling just over 42 minutes on the standard version. The deluxe version features 11 additional original songs, as well as an acoustic recording of the single “Bored to Death.

 

The new tracks, including “Parking Lot,” “6/8,” and “Hey I’m Sorry,” have received mostly positive reviews, in keeping with the rest of the album. The sound is in keeping with the band’s early work, but seems to be nostalgically revisiting the tone, as opposed to clinging to something lost. Despite the change in the band’s line-up, the sound and feeling is largely unchanged.

The additions to the album also includes collaborations with RAS (Nicholas Furlong) on the track “Good Old Days” and with songwriter Simon Wilcox on the track “Bottom of the Ocean.”

Twenty One Pilots’ Song “Heathens”gaining traction from Suicide Squad Soundtrack

HEathens

 

Twenty-One Pilots are adding to the Suicide Squad soundtrack with their new song, “Heathens.” They join an interesting group of musicians for the project, including Eminen, Panic at the Disco, Skrillex, Lil Wayne, and even Creedence Clearwater Revival.

The popularity of the band and the excitement for the movie has already brought “Heathens” to number 14 on the U.S. Billboard’s Hot 100.

The single features a similar sound to the band’s most recent album, Blurryface, with vocal distortion, introspective lyrics, slow keys and bass, and a creative but not overpowering beat.

Watch the music video, featuring the Suicide Squad characters, here:

Band Profile: The Front Bottoms

tfb

 

The Front Bottoms are an indie-rock/ folk-punk band from New Jersey, originally consisting of only Brian Sella on vocals and acoustic guitar and Mat Uychich on drums in a set-up often described with the phrase “it shouldn’t work, but it does.”

Their style is profoundly unique and raw; it carries the simplicity and relatability of folk rock, with the power and emotion of punk. Brian’s lyrics somehow manage to be specifically an articulation of his own experiences, and yet at the same time feel as if they are common to us all.

After a number of self-released EPs in 2007-2010, the band finally put out a self-titled album with label Bar/None in 2011, followed by Talon of the Hawk in 2013. The latter of which contains the song “Twin-Sized Mattress”- a crowd favorite (and excellent representation of the band’s sound, if you’re looking for a sample).

 

The addition of Tom Warren on bass and Ciaran O’Donnell on guitar, keys, and trumpet, as well as the band’s move to Fueled by Ramen made some changes to the sound of their newest album. Back on Top has a more polished and electric feel, moving away from the simplicity of the solo acoustic guitar. While different, the album maintains the band’s standard of excellence. New favorites include Cough It Out, West Virginia, and Summer Shanty.  Even the B-side tracks (Ginger, 2YL) are fun and memorable. Although older fans took some warming up to the difference in sound, the overall response is positive.

Here’s “Cough It Out” from Back on Top 

In addition to fun and relateable music, one thing I personally really enjoy about this band is their music videos. All their videos are fun and enjoyable, without taking focus away from the music itself. Even now they seem to retain the simplicity and lovability of the early videos, which all look like they were made on an $8 budget. They, like the music itself, feel like they were made by really talented friends of yours, like this is something accessible and right here for you, no pretentiousness needed.

Check out the videos for BackflipFunny You Should Ask, and West Virginia  to see what I mean.

Radiohead back with new song

After temporarily removing all traces of their online presence, Radiohead surprised fans this week with a new song, “Burn the Witch,” complete with a creepy, claymation video you never asked for, but always needed.

radiohead

After drawing attention by deleting every post from the band’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, the band dropped two small clips at teasers before launching the full video today.

The video, highly speculated about in the band’s silence, is fun and interesting to watch, but don’t let it distract you from the really interesting things happening musically in this new single.

Watch the full video here

Miike Snow’s Adorable “Genghis Khan” Music Video Going Viral

kahn1

Miike Snow (who, if you didn’t know, is a band, not a person) released the music video for “Genghis Khan” in January, so this is hardly breaking news. The video has, however, been increasingly shared online, now having more than 4,000,000 views on YouTube alone. The second single of their latest album, iii, features an adorable and hilarious plot of a cliché evil villain falling in love with his James Bond-style nemesis.

khan3

It pairs drama with cute dance moves, more akin to what one would expect in a Fred Astaire musical than in a pop song, but it somehow perfectly complements the song’s serious content and yet fun, catchy sound.

khan2

Watch it, or check out the whole album, at miikesnow.com 

Local Band Profile: In Her Own Words

In Her Own Words is a Los Angeles local Pop-punk band that if you haven’t heard, you are missing out.

inherownwords

The classic pop-punk sound is still alive and well in southern California, and still rocking in basement shows and emptied-out backyard pools the way so many of us in East Coast suburbs only imagined. If not always literally in that type of show, this band still embodies that SoCal vibe with their rocking riffs and fast, hard lyrics. They are Blink-182 meets Real Friends, with impressively controlled vocals and rhythm.

Since 2010 the band has put out three EPs and one full length album, all independently produced. “East and West,” the 2014 EP, features acoustic versions of five songs from the earlier album “Everything I Used To Trust,” giving fans a chance to really see the wide range of talent the guys have.

Catch them local in LA, or check out their music through their facebook page here, or download on iTunes.

 

[Photo source]

New Single Release: Santana’s “Leave Me Alone”

Fans of all ages have been long anticipating Santana’s new album, Santana IV, featuring a majority of the classic, Woodstock-era lineup.

Following the single “Anywhere You Want To Go” (released Feb 5th), the band put out “Leave Me Alone” this Friday (April 8th) as a teaser for the album release of Santana VI next week, on April 15th, 2016.

Very much a band of their time, Santana has not released the single streaming anywhere online, but can be purchased alone on Amazon or iTunes, or with the full album next Friday.

 

 

OK Go’s New Video is Out of This World Good

ok-go-upside-down-inside-out

OK Go, the band first made famous by their treadmill music video  for “Here It Goes Again” in 2005 has continuously impressed fans with their over-the-top music videos. Highlights include a massive rube goldberg machine for “This Too Shall Pass,” a warehouse full of continuous forced-perspective shots in “The Writings On the Wall,” and the AMAZING aerial shots of 2,300 dancers with umbrellas in “I Woln’t Let You Down” (if you haven’t see in yet, check it out. Its unbelievable).

In the most recent  music video, for “Upside Down & Inside Out,” the second single off their most recent album, Hungry Ghosts, continues the trend of outdoing themselves. The video was shot entirely in an airplane flying parabolic maneuvers, providing weightlessness. The effect is a video seeming to be shot in space.

OKweightless-660x330.jpg

See the whole video here

Like the band’s previous videos, it was filmed in one continuous shot. However, since in an airplane the longest period of weightless possibly is a little less than 30 seconds, chunks of time had to be cut out while the plane recovered height. The cameras were continuously rolling, although we have to take the band’s word on that more so than in their previous continuous-shot videos.

It’s hard to say how the band will top this, but that has been the sentiment after each music video they’ve put out, so we can look forward to something even crazier.