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Rock

Interview: Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

Things are starting to break for Melbourne’s Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever (think The Strokes and Parquet Courts). Sub Pop has signed them for the US and they just completed their successful run on the Laneway Festival tour that hit major cities in and around Australia. They’re Coachella-bound in April and will hit other US cities before heading to Europe for a trek that will include the Primavera Festival in Barcelona. Here was our chat prior to their successful hometown set at Laneway Melbourne.

Hear Bruce Rave’s weekly new indie jams on three stations, with show announcements on his Go Deep With Bruce Rave facebook page. Archived shows available on the KX 93.5 site, where you can also subscribe to receiving the weekly two-hour version as an iTunes podcast at no charge.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
04-01-18

Interview: Albert Hammond, Jr.

My SXSW intention this year was no interviews and to just focus on seeing bands. When I was invited to interview Albert Hammond Jr, well you don’t turn down a Stroke. Besides, he’s been turning out wicked solo stuff. For those of us who loved the Strokes’ early sounds, Albert has preserved much of that feel on his albums and shows how he’s influenced countless bands over the past fifteen years. He’s a down to earth, upbeat guy and his live show was a top SXSW highlight this year.

Hear Bruce Rave’s weekly new indie jams on three stations, with show announcements on his Go Deep With Bruce Rave facebook page. Archived shows available on the KX 93.5 site, where you can also subscribe to receiving the weekly two-hour version as an iTunes podcast at no charge.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
03-31-18

Annabel Allum – RASCAL

Annabel Allum streams first follow up track from last year’s great “All That For What” EP in the form of “RASCAL”. Fitted with a big disto-driven chorus and anthemic main melody, “RASCAL” is strong step forward from the Surrey-origin artist.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
03-29-18

Raven King – Armilla

Raven King has been hailed as an eerie grunge rock fusion between Nirvana and Queens of the Stone Age, but my favorite track off their self-titled release is a bit more subdued. “Armilla” is a dreamy stroll through the woods with babbling creeks, sweetly tender guitar, soft vocal harmonies, and the echoes of sliding metal. It’s a bittersweet collage that both bends and bolster’s the group’s creative sound.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
03-28-18

[SXSW] AWAL x B3SCI present NVDES, Young & Sick, Evalyn + more at Palm Door, Austin TX on 3/15

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… SXSW! B3 is pleased to announce, in collaboration with AWAL, a showcase on Thursday March, 15 at the Palm Door on Sabine St. in Austin. Featuring the outcast pop of B3 alum NVDES, current B3 acts cladestine popman Young & Sick and L.A. singer/powerhouse Evalyn; the March 15th show also includes a smattering of favorite B3 acts, redoutable transatlantic indie pop duo Freedom Fry, UK rock turbojets The Warbly Jets, cousins in cool electropop Otzeki, and the Franco-American sophisticate pop of CLARA-NOVA. The first set for this official showcase goes off at 7:45 on Thursday the 15th. Be there!

MORE DETAILS AT SXSW

Set Times:

1:00am – 1:50am NVDES
12:00am – 12:40am Young & Sick
11:05pm – 11:40pm Freedom Fry
10:10pm – 10:45pm Evalyn
9:15pm – 9:50pm Warbly Jets
8:30pm – 8:55pm Otzeki
7:45pm – 8:10pm CLARA–NOVA

reviewed by
03-06-18

Launder – Annie Blue

“Annie Blue” is the latest track previewed from Launder forthcoming “Pink Cloud”. Produced by Jackson Philips (Day Wave), “Annie Blue” wins on its really strong melodic writing (it’s awesome melodic hook, after awesome melodic hook, etc) souped up quite nicely in a sheen on reverb-y guitar c/o DIIV’s Zachary Cole Smith.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
03-05-18

Michael P. Cullen – Do You Believe

Michael P Cullen’s newest single “Do You Believe” channels the brooding alt rock of Radiohead with a kitsch repetitiveness that seems to evoke a darker rendition of Spoon in their heyday. After the first listen, the track seems to seep into your head, refusing to leave.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
03-02-18

Why Bonnie – Practice

“Practice” the latest from ATX band Why Bonnie packs big expansive guitars about a propulsive tightly wound rhythm track and an on top the mix but no less powerful main vocal. Great track.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
02-26-18

Galapaghost – Pulse

The title track from Galapaghost’s new album Pulse is a stirring ode to the attack at the Orlando nightclub back in June of 2016. While the tune suffers from some heavy-handed lyrics, reverberating guitar spins outward, as if remembering those lost. Mallet-like percussion takes you by the hand, and the track locks onto the tenderness of the tragedy. It’s a dark, pop ballad that awards listeners a dose of true reverence—and, man, do we need it.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
02-19-18

Review: Laneway Festival, Melbourne AU, 02/03/18

View from up the hill. Laneway-Melbourne takes place at the Footscray Community Arts Centre, on the banks of the Maribymong River with downtown Melbourne across the way. It’s highly accessible via public transportation. Photo: Andy Hazel

At a time when so many of the largest festivals have become all things to all people, Australia’s Laneway Festival continues to shun the mainstream in order to present fans with stellar lineups of artists much more on the edge. Typical Laneway crowds might be 15,000 and this traveling extravaganza hit six locations around Australia plus Singapore. I had my second Laneway experience in Melbourne on Feb 3. As with any similar event, one must choose when there are 40 different bands on 5 stages. Here are my highlights in the order I saw them.

It was my second time seeing London’s melodic, punkish Dream Wife. They were good last May at The Great Escape in Brighton, UK and they’re really good now. Their self-titled album has dropped here in the US. Melbourne’s own Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever showed why they’ve been snagged for this years Coachella and Primavera festivals. They blasted a large throng with their propulsive set that reminds of The Strokes and Parquet Courts, among others. I’ve been hearing great things about Sylvan Esso live and they delivered. With their big sound, one might be surprised to see they’re actually a two-piece. They had their crowd shaking their bodies. I’d seen Wolf Alice twice before, both times at B3Sci SXSW parties. They went from good to very good and now this is a band that is arena-ready. Look out for them as a significant headliner if their next album is another winner, and kudos to Mike and Troy at B3Sci on their foresight. I’m not much of a hip-hop guy but Anderson Paak was someone I really wanted to see based on live stuff I’d seen online. What a set! It varied from his straight-ahead hip-hop to his retro r&b to disco. Easily the most excited and largest crowd, and Anderson even played some drums. Mac Demarco added to the mayhem when he jumped onstage to do a handstand. This was the evening I got to finally cross Father John Misty off my bucket list. His powerful set was exactly as expected. Biggest surprise for me was Odesza, who played with far more drive and stage visuals than I anticipated. They even brought out a drum line a couple times, which people buzzed about for days afterwards. Pond played their usual high-energy show and showed us some excellent new tunes. Closing the main stage was The War on Drugs who justified that position with their ace and tight musicianship.
Among the people I was sorry to miss due to inevitable festival conflicts: The UK band Shame who I heard put on a strong early afternoon performance. I’ve played them on my radio show along with Aussies The Babe Rainbow who also have a good reputation for their live show and I hated missing both. I’ve seen the massively talented Moses Sumney a couple times in LA and missed him here. Moses is another veteran of a B3Sci SXSW party where it was obvious a few years ago that he was on the cusp of a major ascension. Mac Demarco played three years ago when I was also on hand, and he was a top highlight. I unfortunately had to miss him this time around.
I can’t recommend this festival enough for anyone having the chance to catch up with it next year. Laneway management, the PR people, and the staff on the ground are all top notch. Then there’s this lineup. Nowadays it’s rare to find such a stellar group with an indie focus, all playing in one day.


Anderson Paak played a set that transcended the hip-hop genre and was real hard not to love. Photo: Andy Hazel.

Hear Bruce Rave’s weekly new indie jams on three stations, with show announcements on his Go Deep With Bruce Rave facebook page. Archived shows available on the KX 93.5 site, where you can also subscribe to receiving the weekly two-hour version as an iTunes podcast at no charge.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

reviewed by
02-13-18