Sir Sly- “You Haunt Me”

I don’t always listen to breezy, lighthearted indiepop, but when I do, it usually sounds something like this latest song by the up and coming Los Angeles trio Sir Sly, who first caught my attention this spring with their cover of Drake’s “Marvin’s Room.” On their new track, “You Haunt Me,” the bright, wistful arrangements and shiny vocals belie the melancholy tinged lyrics, creating a beautiful, uplifting backdrop to a song that speaks of loss.

Stream “You Haunt Me,” the title track on their upcoming album below, and if you like what you hear, pre-order the album before its September 29 release date.

The American Scene- “4th and Broadway”


After unveiling one of the best tracks of the summer last week, The American Scene have just debuted the second single from their upcoming album, Haze (out September 9 via Pure Noise Records). “4th and Broadway” follows in a similarly upbeat indie rock vein as the first single, “Royal Blue,” but it takes the upbeat, dancy vibe a step further. This is infectious, indie rock ear candy at its finest, and it calls to mind the likes of Bombay Bicycle Club, Tokyo Police Club, and Two Door Cinema Club (And I swear I didn’t realize until I finished typing that sentence that all three of those bands end with the word “club”).

I’m excited to hear “Haze” in its entirety. From what we’ve heard so far, it is shaping up to be an excellent album, and also quite different in sound than its predecessor, Safe For Now. I have a feeling that this stylistic shift will win the band many accolades and a much broader fan base.

You can stream “4th and Broadway” here, via Angelica Nicolle

Sufjan Stevens- “A Little Lost” (Arthur Russell cover)

Sufjan Stevens all but abandoned his signature lavishly adorned indie folk style and made a bold foray into landscape of dark, glitchy, electronic music for his last proper (non-Christmas music) album, 2010’s “The Age of Adz.” Since then, he teamed up with rapper Serengeti and producer Son Lux earlier this year to create the hip hop/electronic/indie fusion project “Sisyphus,” and now he has resurfaced with a cover of Arthur Russell’s “A Little Lost.”

This cover would have fit right in on Sisyphus’ debut; it’s stylistically in line with the tracks on that album that showcase his vocals, but with an added sense of grandeur and jubilation that recalls his early albums, “Michigan” and “Illinoise.”

Stream the song below and read more about The Red Hot + Arthur Russell “Master Mix” compilation that will feature Sufjan and more than 20 other artists.

City and Colour- “Suffer The Children” (Tears For Fears cover)

Dallas Green (a.k.a. City and Colour) has covered everything from his own former post-hardcore band Alexisonfire’s “Boiled Frogs” to Madonna’s “Love Don’t Live Here Anymore,” and he’s always managed to infuse his covers with an authentic sense of sincerity and yearning that make for a powerful re-interpretation of the original work. His latest cover is a piano based version of an 80’s synth pop song, Tears For Fears’ “Suffer The Children.” If you’re at all familiar with the original song, this seems like an especially odd choice for Green, but of course he pulls it off masterfully. The bare bones instrumentation highlights the resonance and beauty of his vocals and harmonies, which manage to convey a glimmer of hope and upliftment in an otherwise sorrowful landscape.

Stream it here and be sure to also check out his “Covers” EPs if you like what you hear.

Turnover- “Disintegration”

Turnover went through a pretty remarkable transition between their 2011 self-titled EP and their full length follow-up, Magnolia, which was one of my favorite albums of 2013. So it will be interesting to hear what other shifts in sound and style this band has in store for us with their upcoming EP, Blue Dream, which comes out on August 26.

The EP’s first single, “Disintegration,” begins with a simple, minimalist kind of sound, stripped down to gentle guitar arpeggios and subdued vocals that enhance the song’s especially reflective, introspective lyrics. Then, a little beyond the halfway mark, the emotional floodgates open as the chill guitars and somber vocal style abruptly give way to a beautifully noisy, turbulent crescendo that pretty much leaves me speechless every time I listen to it.

If you’re a fan of Balance and Composure or Brand New (especially their 2006 magnum opus The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me), you’ll most likely love “Disintegration.” Stream it below, courtesy of Brooklyn Vegan, pre-order their EP here, and fall in love with this extremely talented, ever-evolving, genre defying band.

The band will also be touring with Light Years and Malfunction this fall. Tour dates are listed below.


Turnover — 2014 Tour Dates

SEP 17 – Virginia Beach, VA @ Shaka’s w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 18 – Baltimore, MD @ Metro Gallery w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 19 – Long Island, NY @ Amityville Music Hall w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 20 – Howell, NJ @ Gamechanger World w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 21 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Barbary w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 23 – Holyoke, MA @ The Waterfront Tavern w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 24 – Poughkeepsie, NY @ Pizza Shop w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 25 – New York, NY @ The Studio at Webster Hall w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 26 – Ottawa, ON @ Pressed w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 27 – Toronto, ON @ Hard Luck Bar w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 28 – Buffalo, NY @ Waiting Room w/ Light Years, Malfunction
SEP 30 – Cincinatti, OH @ Legends w/ Light Years, Malfunction
OCT 01 – Lansing, MI @ Macs Bar w/ Light Years, Malfunction
OCT 02 – Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen w/ Light Years, Malfunction
OCT 03 – Cleveland, OH @ Mahall’s 20 Lanes w/ Light Years, Malfunction

The American Scene- “Royal Blue”

The American Scene are one of those hard to categorize bands that usually just get lumped into that amorphous genre called “indie rock.” They’re also an extremely underrated band who I hope will get the attention they deserve with the release of their upcoming album, “Haze” (out September 9 via Pure Noise Records). The band showcases an interesting hybrid sound on “Royal Blue,” the album’s first single, that lies somewhere between the slightly hazy, grungy, post-hardcore/emo influenced style typified by bands like Balance and Composure and Seahaven and the jangly, sun drenched indie rock crafted by Tokyo Police Club.

Their ability to create such a well-balanced blend of sounds and to carve out a significant niche for themselves in the indie rock scene might help them experience some crossover success. I think this new single will appeal to fans of more poppy, mainstream indie rock as well as fans of less accessible and less polished bands in the post-hardcore/post-rock/emo genres. I’m really excited for the new album and to see what kinds of success and recognition it earns this especially talented band.

You can stream “Royal Blue” below and pre-order “Haze” here.

Slow Magic- “Hold Still”

I tend to be pickier about electronic music as opposed to rock, and Slow Magic makes just the kind of electronic music that suits my tastes. It’s a little on the chiller side, flows in a casually intriguing way, makes minimal use of vocals, and tends to layer and stagger the beats and sounds to make the composition feel varied, balanced, and well thought out. His tracks are intricately detailed and carefully produced. And the arrangement he has laid out with this latest track, “Hold Still,” has a subtle way of enticing the listener to dive deep into the soundscape and get carried by the rather unpredictable currents that move it along.

Slow Magic will release his new album, “How To Run Away,” on September 9 via Downtown Records. You can pre-order it here