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TRACK PREMIERE: RAINSTORM BROTHER “HEAVY BLUE”

October 15th, 2018

Rainstorm Brother is songwriter John Isaac Watters (who you might remember from his Hi-Hat residencies, or other street-level sets) and electronics wrangler Tyler Chester, who together make an atmospheric kind of future folk, and "Heavy Blue" is a glimpse of their coming debut. It's a desolate piano-and-synth almost-ballad with barely-there drums and a relentless sense of tension and release. (If Springsteen covered more than just that one Suicide song, he might end up with something like this.)

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TRACK PREMIERE: THE BUTTERTONES “MADAME SUPREME”

October 12th, 2018

L.A.'s Buttertones have a surprise-attack single out right now and here's the A-side: "Madame Supreme," a dramatic noir-wave love song to a once-in-a-lifetime kind of woman or maybe to a nuclear bomb? Either way, it's about what happens when you got the power to really light up a room. "Madame Supreme" comes out today (get it here!) on Innovative Leisure with the b-side "Shutout," a cover of an extremely Buttertones-y song from the Walker Brothers' last full-length. (Dudes, check out the Numbers Band if you're seeking future flipside covers.)

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TRACK PREMIERE: ALEX LILLY “DISTRACTING ME”

October 11th, 2018

Alex Lilly has been a part of plenty of lovely local albums—including releases by Dengue Fever, the Bird and the Bee, the Living Sisters and more—and in January she'll be putting out her debut full-length release 2% Milk. Lead single "Distracting Me" is a light (but not slight) pop song with a punchy beat and engaging twisty-turny melodies, written about how romance re-orders priorities—and how every so often the unexpected choice turns out to be the right one.

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TRACK PREMIERE: slip “the optimist”

October 10th, 2018

slip is Taylor Brown, formerly of Vanaprasta and Sun Drug, and also spotted recently contributing guitar to his old bandmate Collin Desha's Low Hum. He's exploring something new with slip, however, ranging into a kind of terrain where endless sky and troubled sea all blur into the same uneasy darkness. His prior track "the patient" was uptempo but not upbeat, but "the optimist" ratchets up the tension yet again. It's something like when Radiohead covered Can, but with a surprise guitar break-out after the first nervous chorus—which is the first of a few surprises in this compact but potent song. slip has an album in the works, but "the optimist" single is out this Fri., Oct. 12.

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TRACK PREMIERE: VUG ARAKAS “6 AM”

October 2nd, 2018

L.A.'s Vug Arakas put out a stand-out EP earlier this year, and now he's back with another last-call ballad from the dark end of the street. The considered and deliberate "6 AM" finds a street-level Springsteen-ian grandeur in the long walk home alone at sunrise. Despite the tragedy or maybe just the ennui, sings Vug, "At least it's quiet out / on 7th Street at 6 AM ..." (Cue desperately epic guitar solo.) Arakas is on tour across his native Midwest now, but he'll be back in L.A. at Harvard and Stone at the end of the month. Full dates below!

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TRACK PREMIERE: ANDREW RINEHART “INTERDIMENSIONAL NONCONVERSATIONAL INCONSEQUENTIAL LOVE”

October 2nd, 2018

We covered Andrew Rinehart's Nothing/Everything album many years ago, but now he's out of grad school and back in L.A.—that explains the long gap—and back to using his brain for making music. Nothing was desolate Americana, but "Interdimensional" is Godzilla-sized Blue Oyster Cult riffery delivered like a Sonic Youth deep cut: confusion transformed into noise, with plenty of space for the guitar to crumble and disintegrate.