Tag Archives: pop

NPR Names Some Ember’s ‘Thrashing Whip’ (Avalon Emerson Remix) As One Of The Best Dance Tracks In June

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Some Ember is Nina Chase and Dylan Travis.

Self-produced and recorded over a period of two years, the new full-length album from Calfornia duo Some Ember is the culmination of a range of experience for these two wanderers. Some Ember is rich with meaning, sonic creativity, and emotional energy, a striking evolution from previous releases Hotel of Lost Light and Asleep in the Ice Palace. Here, cold synthesizers and harsh industrial beats dominate the A-side, while swirling drone and organic percussion characterize the unique second half. The exceptional voices of Dylan Travis and Nina Chase balance the record, their melodies anchoring things firmly in the pop realm.

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Hillary Capps – The Wishing Forest

a1460651492_10Hillary Capps is a name that I had not heard before, but luckily while her name may be new, her sound is a familiar one. Her voice has a good range for pop music, and her music style shares the same kind of range. Her new release, The Wishing Forest is sure to win over pop audiences.
While I had never listened to her before, Hillary Capps was instantly able to draw me in with a familiar sound. Each of her tracks has a different kind of orchestration behind her voice, so she shows us that she is capable of going in between different kinds of pop music. Overall for a solo artist she proves to be able to pull in influences from a variety of places, which is always good to see since there is a common complaint that all radio hits start to sound the same.
If you’re a fan of Colbie Caillat and chill pop music, you will enjoy Hillary Capps. If you’re a fan of more upbeat stuff, you will still enjoy Hillary Capps. I would say that if you are looking for a female pop vocalist who doesn’t need a gimmick, you may have found your perfect match!

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The Swellers – “The Light Under Closed Doors” Album Review

The-SwellersIn some ways it’s hard to believe the Swellers have been around for more than a decade. That’s a lifetime for most bands.
On the other hand, if you’ve followed them since the beginning, it feels like they’ve kind of always been here. In a punk scene that’s just as prone to passing trends as any other genre (even if it would never admit it), the Swellers are like a reliable old friend, consistently churning out great records just under the radar.
They had their brief stint with the mainstream, signing to Fueled By Ramen for their third full-length (the stellar Ups and Downsizing) and touring with Paramore, but they’ve never had the makings of a band that would catch on with the kids whose interest in punk stops at Blink-182 and All Time Low.
They’re not flashy or gimmicky. They’re just remarkably adept at writing catchy, melodic punk rock with startling regularity.
In many ways, the band is reminiscent of another one of punk rock’s most unsung groups, No Use for a Name.
Both bands have displayed a knack for writing song after song packed with catchy melodies and clever lyrics. Both earned the respect of their peers and a devoted fanbase, but never quite rose to the same level of popularity some of their contemporaries have enjoyed.
It wasn’t until the untimely passing of frontman Tony Sly last year that NUFAN began to receive their due from the larger punk rock community. Here’s hoping The Swellers get the credit they deserve while they’re still an active band because The Light Under Closed Doors is one of their best albums yet.
Eschewing much of the galloping skate punk that dominated their early records and cropped up frequently on 2011′s Good For Me, this latest album settles into a midtempo swing on the opening track– the killer “Should” — and pretty much locks in from there.The effect is a fantastic power-pop album full of big hooks and driving guitars that often evokes Weezer’s Pinkerton more than anything by a traditional pop punk band.
Nowhere is the Pinkerton influence more apparent than on the album’s slowest and arguably best track, “High/Low.” Beginning with the type of squealing feedback you’d expect at the beginning of a hardcore record, the song quickly reveals itself as a pop tune, thinly disguised by heavy, overdriven guitars and a plodding beat. The song is like nothing else the band has done but they nail it.

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NEO GEO – Digital DNA album review

549058_10150325867799997_210109412_nOut of southern California, NEO GEO’s new full-length album, their second, is titled Digital DNA. And that name is very accurate. The product of the current pop obsession with cold digital sounds and electronic perfection, the band goes very far down the rabbit hole of icy production and doesn’t exactly come out the other side sounding fresh.

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Show 301

Matthew and Santoro host.  Topics discussed include pop-punk bands, Area 51 and US history, bad ass Presidents, beer and games played.  Live calls are taken.  A live prank call is performed.

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We Still Dream – “Something to Smile About” review

1Florida’s We Still Dream! merge new-school pop punk in the vein of The Wonder Years and Man Overboard with the punk-inspired pop and alternative rock that found its way onto airwaves in the ’90s.
There are several moments throughout “Something to Smile About” that are strongly reminiscent of bands like Lit, particularly on “Back to Then,” a song about simpler times spent skateboarding with friends that even employs some of those spoken-word-through-a-megaphone asides (“Oh shit, the cops!”) you rarely hear anymore.
Some of it works pretty well.
Album opener “Happily Never After” is a head-bobbing, Movielife-esque rocker with spot-on harmonies and some impressive drum work.
“So Much Worse” brings to mind “From Under the Cork Tree”-era Fall Out Boy, allowing vocalist Dustin Monk to show off his impressive range.
Meanwhile, closing track “Dissipate” has a darker quality that makes it sound like a lost track from Jimmy Eat World’s “Futures.”
Unfortunately, the band’s lyrics don’t live up to the standards of any of the aforementioned bands.
It’s not that they’re bad necessarily, just bland. Whereas The Wonder Years can take what would otherwise be a standard pop punk song and infuse it with a harrowing, ultra-detailed and extremely personal narrative, We Still Dream are content to deal in much more generalized and, as a consequence, more generic lyrics.
While the band’s overall aesthetic occasionally brings back memories of some of the great emo from the early ’00s (Taking Back Sunday, mid-period Saves the Day), the broad, at times cliched lyrics keep the album from rising above the level of audio wallpaper and make a clearly talented sound cookie-cutter.
That’s unfortunate, because the crisp production, hooky melodies and songs that alternate between galloping punk and mid-tempo power-pop could have made for a memorable summer record.
Instead, what we’re left with is an album that’s pleasant enough, but ultimately too light to leave a mark.
Here’s hoping the band is able to reach down a little deeper for the next record and come up with some more unique lyrics because there’s clearly potential here for something more interesting than simply inoffensive background music.

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Filligar – Hexagon album review

1Passionate with a rocking edge, Filligar’s newest release, the huge-sounding Hexagon, is a collection of piano and guitar-based indie rock bursting with heart and soul. Sounding like the bastard children of Ben Folds Five, Wilco, and Coldplay, the quartet is rapidly climbing the rungs to the world’s notice, and if Hexagon is any indication, they’ll be getting their sooner than later.

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