Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Big Tree

Around this time last year, Big Tree was preparing to release their sophomore LP This New Year complete with the addition of a new vocalist and drummer.  Adding the two brought the band count to 5, which made their move out west more of a commitment.  Drawn to the allure of northern California, the group ditched their Brooklyn lives believing that the move westward was necessary for the evolution of the band.  A year later, and here we sit awaiting the release of their new Little EP (due November 16th), a work Big Tree claims pays homage to how California re-directed and re-inspired their sound.  To get into even more detail, the concepts that make up the lead single "Time" are extracted from "the band's altered perception of time on the road", as well as the nostalgia associated with relocating and the excitement of the unknown.  Beautifully voiced by Kaila McIntyre-Bader, "Time" is an amiable and breezy indie pop jam with slick guitars and catchy melodies, making Little an EP to get excited about.  Check out "Time" below, with a download available at SoundCloud.  There is also more to look at in their Facebook and Twitter pages.  Have a happy and safe Halloween everyone!

 Time by BigTree

Friday, October 26, 2012


Earlier this summer I was introduced to the brothers that comprised the duo MadrĂ s.  They had just come out with their debut album Things Can Change, and what impressed me most was what they did with so little.  Quiet and fragile, the buoyant guitar licks made you feel as though you were floating.  That's why when I heard those same brothers also played in a band called Fou, I was eager to hear what they were all about.  Not surprisingly, the product is fantastic and beautiful. The idea is similar, on Fou's 2-song release Boy the group plays with space, manufacturing ethereal dreamscapes that are both calming and engaging. The set up is also minimal, utilizing your basic guitar-bass-drum trio of instruments. Upon first listen, I likened them to the slowcorers Galaxie 500, another group who stripped down to the fundamental arrangement, succeeding wonderfully.  The main difference between Boy and Things Can Change is that Boy includes much more texture. Piercing guitar slides tend to break the silence much more so than in their previous work, giving the release a gazey feel.  It's great music, and definitely worth a couple of listens.  Plus it's a free download, they're basically handing awesome to you on a golden platter.  I've placed both songs from Boy, "Colour Me In" and "Don't You Know?", below for your listening pleasure.  Afterward, be sure to hit up Bandcamp to snag it.

Colour Me In
Don't You Know?

Thursday, October 25, 2012


One of the freshest bands to come to us from Scandinavia is the blossoming Colleagues, who formed earlier this summer.  So far we've only been treated to "Parents' House", which is unfortunate, because afterward you'll only be longing for more.  The debut single is a wonderfully youthful and energetic electropop jam, synths from all angles are constantly jabbing at you in light-hearted fun.  The song really seeks to touch your inner adolescent, just the name "Parents' House" infers an escape to the teenage years.  What really makes the song whole, though, is the implied romance embedded within the lyrics.  The juvenile, innocent fling between the lead and the girl is perfectly relatable, and as the song continues you almost believe that you're flirting with her too. If not, then at least you want to be.  I'm sure she's gorgeous.  I've posted "Parents' House" below for you to listen, and if you would like to follow Colleagues as they continue their quest, you can follow them on Facebook or SoundCloud.  They also have a homepage you can view.  Happy Thursdays!

 Parents' House by Colleagues

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Joel Hood

It's fascinating to see two artists who you respect somehow morph into one singular unit.  What's even better is when that end result is awesome. Take for example Joel Hood, whose gentle electronic arrangements would sound pleasing to just about anyone, and match him with Astronauts, etc., who specializes in comfortable and melodic dream pop.  All you need to do is look at it on paper to see that the pairing is ideal.  Well, around two months ago Astronauts, etc. released "Mystery Colors", his heavenly debut single that seemed to excite the blogosphere.  As we fast forward to the present, Joel Hood has remixed his own wonderful rendition of the hit track.  Still equally as tranquil, Hood's remix lowers the focus on the original's drifting synths and replaces them with his own delicate electronic accents.  You can stream the song below, with a free download as well as other pieces of work available on SoundCloud.  You can also visit his Facebook or Twitter.  One more thing, keep an eye out on November 8th when Hood will make his own "Teardrops" available for free download on Bad Panda Records. Enjoy!

 Mystery Colors (J.Hood Remix) by Joel Hood

Blue Boats

In early September of this year, the U.K. film student Oliver Gale graced us with the wonderful single "Summer's Down", a song that made the transition from summer to fall much more bearable.  Now, Gale has released his newest single entitled "I Am The Only One", a slow-burning ballad bursting with emotion. Whereas previous tracks were more jovial, his new track flexes his songwriting capabilities, putting his melancholy styles on display.  In-between his verses, Gale unleashes high-pitched bellows, indicating what seems to be a cry for help.  In the forefront the lines "you have done enough" are on repeat, exhibiting a sense of anger and sadness.  Yet, towards the end we're treated to an uplifting guitar riff, an infectious rhythm which lifts us from the doldrums and instills hope in the future.  All and all it's a wonderful piece of music, and one that should snag the interest of previous Blue Boats fans.  You can listen to the new "I Am The Only One" below, then be sure to take a visit to his Facebook and Twitter.

 I Am The Only One by Blue Boats

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Trails and Ways

So it has happened, the moment I've been eagerly waiting for has arrived.  Ever since I heard their song "Mtn Tune" earlier this summer, the Oakland band Trails and Ways has been one of my favorite emerging acts as of late.  I felt this was only proven further when they released their Sure Thing EP, a compilation of wonderfully executed covers.  Around this time they promised more material would be on its way soon, a vow which has been fulfilled today.  "Border Crosser" is the first original track they've made since "Mtn Tune", and it's pretty significant considering that it represents the leadoff single from their debut full-length album, Trilingual.  This is our first glimpse at how Trails and Ways is going to fit their lush dream pop styles into a conglomerate, a consistent and fitting conceptual whole. We won't know the complete details until Trilingual drops early next year (exact date still unknown), but from "Border Crosser" we can gather that the band is in touch with their opinions, utilizing music as a medium to put forth their ideals.  Inspired by one member's grandparent's journey to California, we are carried on a melodious voyage that hints at sacrifice and the importance of family.  On "Border Crosser" their verdict is clear: love for one another doesn't, and shouldn't, know any boundaries.  With such meaning defined in the history it's obvious this song is important to them, and as such it would make sense that a statement piece like this symbolizes the kickstart of their first ever LP, the beginnings of their voyage.  I've posted "Border Crosser" below for you to listen to, with a free download available here.  All you need to do is like their Facebook page.  You can also follow them on Twitter, with additional streams at SoundCloud.

 Border Crosser (free download) by TRAILS AND WAYS

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Today the Brooklyn quartet Lazyeyes played in their first CMJ showcase, an honor that is deserved for the young band and their well-crafted version of indie rock.  So far we've only been treated to two tracks off their debut EP (which should be released in a month or so), but I've seen a sizable enough sample to declare my excitement for their future.  Lazyeyes sound strangely unique, mixing together elements of fast-paced alternative, guitar-driven punk, and subdued lo-fi.  I'm having trouble figuring it out, which could be part of the reason for my interest in them.  There is a tinge of beachy infusion, something most notably present in "Nostalgia", a beautiful song that rides the same groove Beach Fossils have been fantastic at producing.  The riff that propels the tune is high-pitched and clean while the vocals are blanketed in a film of dreamy fuzz, extending a hand out to those keen on surf rock.  Their other track, "Forever", is similar, except appears to be slightly more complex and slightly more inspired by punk rock.  Either way, both are intriguing examples of summer rhythms, despite the fact they may not appear as such at first glance.  I've posted "Nostalgia" and "Forever" below, so be sure to listen to those. Afterward, feel free to browse their Bandcamp and Facebook.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

N8 ST9

The last time we heard from N8 ST9 was over the summer when he had just released his debut song "Shooting Star".  The best way to describe it is a hypnotic journey that drifts in and out of wobbly synth lines and drum beats, the kind of music I would find in the soundtrack to one of my dreams.  N8 ST9's newest song "Impact", posted yesterday, has once again sent me into a daze. Although not as long as "Shooting Star", "Impact" packs a punch into its 5:52 duration.  This time around, N8 ST9 diminishes the use of the synth in replacement of grandiose orchestral elements. To set the tone, he implements a calming vocal track that alternates between himself and guest contributor Sarah Rose.  About a minute in the track really begins to take flight, introducing the powerful backbeat that sets the foundation for the soaring string section.  To have a taste of "Impact", all you need to do is click the play button below.  For more on his work you can always visit SoundCloud, although he has also been known to dabble in Facebook and Twitter.

 Impact by N8 ST9

Monday, October 15, 2012

Work Drugs

One of the hardest working bands out there, and one that has become a favorite here at Audio Splash, is the Philadelphia "glo-fi" group called Work Drugs.  For a few years now they have been putting out new material at a constant rate, always leaving their fans with a fresh array of music.  Single after single, EP after EP, album after album, I just can't say I've ever left disappointed.  So it shouldn't come as a surprise that as the hype surrounding their most recent full-length, Absolute Bearing, is starting to wind down, a new track has been dropped on us.  It's called "Tigerbeats" and it comes to us off of the band's forthcoming album, Delta, which is due out later this November on Bobby Cahn Records.  The song was written about a recent night of debauchery at Philly's infamous Barbary indie dance party, which I'm guessing (and hoping) was a great time.  To enter into their world of smooth, hypnotic, feel-good synth atmospheres, you can take a listen below.  You can then hit up SoundCloud or Bandcamp for a free download with Twitter and Facebook available for more info.  Don't forget to keep an eye out for Delta later this November!

 Tigerbeats by Work Drugs


It wasn't too long ago that the Chicago trio ON AN ON was a quintet in the form of Scattered Trees, a band which wasn't afraid implement common pop tendencies into their releases.  Shortly after the release of their album Sympathy, two members flew the coop earlier this year, thus leaving the remaining three with a decision to either disband or continue onward.  The choice was to move forward, and what birthed from this verdict was ON AN ON's first single "Ghosts".  Everything that you might expect from Scattered Trees seems to have been ditched in their new material; "Ghosts" is a slow-burning dream pop masterpiece, taking sparse percussion swings a la Beach House and overlapping them with raw, poignant strumming in a style that would make Modest Mouse proud.  Initially these elements appear out of place, lacking a particular flow or direction, only to coalesce into a fitting conglomerate of beautiful dream atmospheres and varying textures.  The build up alone is worth raving about, for the melodies that reveal themselves throughout the song's duration are quite memorable.  "Ghosts" comes off of the forthcoming debut album for ON AN ON, which is set to hit the market on January 29th of next year.  In the words of the group, the album will be a "dream-washed textural journey armed with a biting perspective on life, love, and the commonality of loss".  Well, don't need to twist my arm.  You can take a gander at the brand-spankin' new video for "Ghosts" below with the SoundCloud audio underneath that.  Be sure to hit up their Facebook for some more info.  Enjoy!

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Since the band's beginning, NO CEREMONY/// has been somewhat of a mysterious entity.  Coming to prominence in late 2011, the group released a series of original tracks and remixes online that won major approval in the eyes of the blogosphere.  Diplo and Ellie Goulding even delivered their praise.  At this point no one had any idea who the band members were, and it didn't help that they had never performed live. NO CEREMONY/// let people wallow in their curiosity until May 18th this year when they finally performed live for the first time.  They haven't slowed down, playing alongside the likes of Alt-J and earning slot times at music festivals spread out over Europe.  The momentum is continuing with the release of their new single, "FEELSOLOW".  The track is an electronic piece that rewards frequent listens; at first glance we're led to believe it's a sappy electro-piano ballad with altered reworked vocals reminiscent of James Blake, except the song proves to be different.  We're treated to a slow build-up of layers, including a more pronounced drum beat as time goes on.  Halfway through the song though, the floodgates open and we're bombarded with a wash of synths, keyboards, and other electronic assemblies.  If the whole track was like its second half, it may have even been considered dance music. It's an intriguing piece, and is one that has a strange allure to it.  I've posted the music video below for your viewing pleasure with a free SoundCloud download under that if your heart desires it.  To enter further into their mystical world, take a visit to their homepage.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tame Impala

A funny thing happened to me a few days ago. Strangely enough, I found myself listening to Lonerism over and over again on repeat. Then, on a whim I purchased Tame Impala concert tickets in a city hours from where I live.  After that I had a curious urge to go online and buy a Tame Impala shirt, followed by some vinyl. Speaking as an addict be forewarned, if you decide to pick up this album (which you totally should), you will find yourself digging deeper and deeper into a black hole of obsession.  Now, I know that I am a mere blogger, but holy smokes these guys have not failed to amaze me around every corner.  Lonerism, their sophomore record, is just as good if not better than the stunningly awesome InnerSpeaker.  They've achieved the same level of psychedelic adrenaline, dug deeper into their '60s roots, and in doing so have claimed throne to the hallucinatory rock reign. The best part about Tame Impala though is that their music goes way deeper than being a Jimi Hendrix imitator; on Lonerism Kevin Parker has proven that he can create original melodies and wandering bass lines that sound ultra fresh.  It's a marvel to behold.  I've posted a favorite, "Mind Mischief", below for you to indulge in.  After that, well...I don't need to say anything else, I'm sure you'll be hooked after listening.

 Tame Impala - Mind Mischief by snawn

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


This past spring the folk group Balto released their debut album called October's Sky, which is based on lead singer Daniel Sheron's experiences of when he abandoned his life in Moscow and went alone into Siberia. It's an incredible story, and it's the same guy who turned out to have jam sessions with his band outside their local library and achieve the name "The Assholes Outside the Library".  In my opinion, that means you're doing something right.  Such would appear to be the case, especially with the release of Balto's Monuments EP which came out last month.  If their jams sounded like this, I don't see how anyone could call them assholes.  Monuments is a piece of folk beauty, employing a wide range of string instruments like guitars, mandolins, banjoes, accordions, and upright bass.  The harmony between all of them blend wonderfully to add a tinge of country to an already easily accessible and interesting folk-driven EP. That's not even mentioning Sheron's vocals, which carry the tunes along effortlessly. I've posted two of my favorite songs below from Monuments, "Gravestones" and "Doves", so be sure to take a listen to those.  Afterwards, their Bandcamp has the rest of the EP, with Facebook and Twitter offering more info.  There is also a main homepage you can run over to.  Dig it up!


Monday, October 8, 2012

Melt Mountain

From the very start with the release of The Midget Party EP in March of 2011, the Greek band Melt Mountain has hovered atop a three-way intersection of psychedelic, dream, and ambient pop.  Rarely flexing the vocal cords, Melt Mountain depends on an intriguing mix of instrumental samples and loops to manufacture dreamy, sometimes trippy, and experimental tracks. And so far, that's all we've gotten a taste of; tracks. The group has yet to release an LP, instead putting out a steady stream of singles and EPs. Their newest release, the "Blossom Dream/Painted Root" single which came out today, is no different.  Both songs fit in perfectly with Melt Mountain's previous work, yet attack at different angles, setting the new single as a prime example of their diversified and exciting portfolio.  The base of "Blossom Dream" is comprised of a beach-like guitar loop, a sedated riff that could appear in a '70s surf video.  Backed by spacious "ooos" and "ahhhs", "Blossom Dream" presents Melt Mountain's breezy, laid-back nature.  "Painted Root" is clearly the psychedelic and experimental counterpart, sounding a little darker and utilizing cloudy synths that come across as more drug-induced. There is no indication of whether these songs will go towards a new album, but they're well worth the listen regardless.  I've posted everything below for your listening pleasure, and if you like what you hear head over to Bandcamp for more offerings of their older material (there is a SoundCloud, although with a limited collection).  Facebook and Twitter are provided as social media.  Enjoy!

 Melt Mountain - Blossom Dream by Melt Mountain

 Melt Mountain - Painted Root by Melt Mountain

Friday, October 5, 2012

Peking Duk

For this Friday's post I'll keep it short and sweet so you guys can go on your merry way for the weekend.  And!  Since we're on the topic of weekends, I think it's a fair assumption to say that everyone has heard/danced/partied to the worldwide hit "We No Speak Americano".  At least I know when I was studying abroad I couldn't enter a bar or club without hearing it three or more times.  I can thank DCUP and Yolanda Be Cool for that, the makers of the dance wonder.  Well now Peking Duk, who I've written about prior, has done a remix of DCUP's new song "I'm Corrupt".  This follows a series of remixes that Peking Duk has completed, and is one that will surely get your Friday moving.  Go ahead and stream it below, then check out SoundCloud for more offerings.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Team Genius

Well, that was a hell of a lot of fun to listen to.  A few days ago the Brooklyn based group Team Genius had an EP Release Day in preparation for the follow-up New York Songs, their forthcoming album.  During the Release Day Team Genius uncorked three separate EPs of varying themes; Whiskey Songs, Pop Songs, and Loud Songs, an ambitious project that covers a lot of ground.  The EPs work though, they're full of character and they stick true to their intended personalities.  As you would imagine, each one has a different feel to it.  Whiskey Songs has a dated novelty and carries a sense of camaraderie, the aesthetic of which sounds like Titus Andronicus.  Loud Songs is...well, louder; the tempos are faster, the reverb a little rougher, and the vocals more projected.  Alternatively, Pop Songs is conventional, containing the melodies and styles the average listener is more associated with.  They may be distinct, but if there is one element that ties all of them together it's friendship and teamwork.  The EPs honestly sound like a blast, like Team Genius had the best time making them.  That sense of fun and creativity really shines through on each release.  I've posted some of my favorites below, and one from each EP: "I Wouldn't Change A Thing" from Whiskey Songs, "All Ours" from Loud Songs, and "Love and Love Songs" from Pop Songs.  As awesome as these are, don't forget about November 6th when the New York Songs LP drops.  You can stream the remaining tracks over at their label's SoundCloud, and if you want more on the band both Facebook and Twitter will do just fine.

 Team Genius - I Wouldn't Change A Thing by Paper Garden Records

 Team Genius - All Ours by Paper Garden Records

 Team Genius - Love and Love Songs by Paper Garden Records

Mt. Wolf

If there were a better word to describe the London quartet Mt. Wolf than 'ethereal', I would use it.  But alas, such a descriptor is non-existent; with gossamer vocals, angelic harmonies, sweeping strings, and deep bass embedded in the music they make, how could there possibly be a more perfect adjective?  The evidence gathered for this conclusion comes from their Life Size Ghosts EP, a 4-song assemblage that exhibits all of Mt. Wolf's heavenly qualities.  The term that they've come to describe it as is "dreamfolk", which just so happens to fit them ideally.  One element to Life Size Ghosts that surprised me were the pronounced beats that appeared out of no where in some of the songs.  In one full swoop they're able to turn a dreamy wash into what sounds like a soulful downtempo track, perhaps along the lines of a darker How to Dress Well.  Either way, Life Size Ghosts is well worth a listen for curious ears, and the good news is that it is streaming over at SoundCloud now, so be sure to have a gander at it.  For more information you can visit the band's Twitter or Facebook.  Below is "Cry Wolf", which comes directly off the EP.

 Cry Wolf by Mt. Wolf

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Chris Malinchak

The last time I wrote about Chris Malinchak was about two months ago when he released "These Dreams", a specimen of disco and house fusion. Today, we are faced with a fresh song from Malinchak called "All Shook Up", the newest addition to his repertoire of beat-heavy electronic bangers.  What's great about "Leaving Tomorrow" is the use of samples, which tend to take on a more soulful tone.  I am even sniffing hints of funk somewhere in there.  This one also comes to you from French Express, a label comprised entirely of foot-tappers and head-rockers.  It's only reasonable that Malinchak would fall directly into the mix.  You can see the array of French Express artists at the label's SoundCloud here.  If it's Malinchak you want, he has a FacebookTwitter, and SoundCloud that you can tune in to.  Have a listen to brand new "All Shook Up" below.  Enjoy!

 Chris Malinchak - All Shook Up by FRENCH EXPRESS

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hey Sholay

It has only been a few weeks since the digital release of Hey Sholay's album ((O)), but excitement for their current single "My Blood" is in full swing.  Perhaps it could be for the character the track achieves; the lead vocals are equal parts inspiration and saddening, but full in emotion.  Maybe it's the accessibility it offers; it's a slice of indie pop cake, complete with a swell of melodious guitars and an inviting chorus.  Not to mention, the build throughout the whole song is well worth the reward at the end; a deep bodied congregation of well-composed instrumentation, an attempt to erase any empty space.  It pays off beautifully.  Now, Hey Sholay has released a video to go along with the song.  It was shot by the band over the course of two weeks on a strict budget of 40 pounds.  Prop feathers, blood, petrol, and the odd snack are listed as the reasons for spending.  You can check out the video directly below, but if you prefer there is a stream of the song under that.  You can learn some more about Hey Sholay over at their Facebook or Twitter with some additions listens available at SoundCloud.  Dig it!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Trails and Ways

It's no lie that the Californian group Trails and Ways is one of my favorite up-and-coming bands circulating the airwaves these days.  It has been a few months removed since the release of their song "Mtn Tune", and yet I still find myself jamming out to it with reckless abandon.  Of course the show must go on, and Trails and Ways has proceeded with the release of their Sure Thing EP.  The name comes from a Miguel cover of "Sure Thing" which is featured on the release. In fact, the whole thing is comprised of covers, including the likes of M83's "Midnight City" and Miike Snow's "Animal".  I took an instant liking to the "Midnight City" cover, which strips the original of its electronic aesthetic and focuses on a minimal (at least in comparison to M83) dream pop style.  They give the track room to breathe instead of the whitewash of synths that rain over the listener in M83's version.  Both songs are great of course, they just go about it in a different way.  I've posted the "Midnight City" cover below, and while you're doing that you can check out the rest of the EP over at their SoundCloud. You can also give them a shout at Facebook and Twitter.

 Midnight City (M83 Cover) by TRAILS AND WAYS


If you're looking for a hardworking band, one that provides new music just as your getting bored with your current library, then you need not look much further than Brooklyn's Woods.  If you've followed them for any of the past seven years, then you've probably noticed how they come out with a new album every year.  The bonus here is that by this point it's also fair to expect the music to be high quality, for they're also one of the more consistent groups out today.  This year's Bend Beyond, which came out September 18th, is proof that even after the constant bombardment of new albums, Woods continues to offer exciting material.  The obvious and instant appeal to Woods is their clear admiration for psychedelic folk bands of the '60s and '70s; I constantly hear them compared to the likes of the Beach Boys.  The main divider between that parallel though is that Woods isn't as flooded with sunshine as the Beach Boys have become synonymous with, but instead focus more heavily on the folk aspect of their music instead of the pop sensibility.  For Woods it pays off.  It has, and while I don't have a crystal ball, I feel it's safe to say it will continue to pay off.  At least I'm crossing my fingers it does.  I've posted one of my favorites from Bend Beyond, "Impossible Sky", below, so be sure to give that a listen and then head over to iTunes to grab it.  Enjoy!

Impossible Sky