I Set My Friends on Fire’s O.G. ‘Astral Rejection’ to Get Official Release

In 2011, I Set My Friends on Fire released Astral Rejection – a sweet, grating fusion of crunkcore, extreme metal and emo-pop. It continued what the band pioneered on their 2008 debut to largely negative reviews. What’s not as well known is that there was an original version of Astral Rejection. Epitaph Records shelved it in 2010. But now, the label has decided to release … Continue reading I Set My Friends on Fire’s O.G. ‘Astral Rejection’ to Get Official Release

The Empty Page’s ‘When the Cloud Explodes’ Is Gritty, Atmospheric Post-Punk

The Empty Page’s ‘When the Cloud Explodes’ is some gritty, atmospheric post punk with a soaring, melodic take. “Taking their name from a Sonic Youth song inspired by Jack Kerouac,” these guys “have been making a racket and jumping around all over the place since their inception in a draughty warehouse in Ancoats, Manchester.” In addition to “diligently ticking their favourite UK venues off their … Continue reading The Empty Page’s ‘When the Cloud Explodes’ Is Gritty, Atmospheric Post-Punk

‘Me’ by Chippass Is Minimalist, Perfectly Off-Beat NorCal Rap

‘Me’ by Chippass featuring E-40 and ALLBLACK is some groovy, minimalist rap with some technical, interesting and genuinely unique flows. “They in love with money but they love themselves more,” a press release says. “Gotta keep it playa when you around these parts.” This has a slow, buzzy analog vibe that’s reminiscent of past trends. At the same time, it feels like forward-facing. Part of … Continue reading ‘Me’ by Chippass Is Minimalist, Perfectly Off-Beat NorCal Rap

Death by Horse’s ‘Summer’s Up’ Is Punchy Swedish Pop Punk

Death by Horse’s ‘Summer’s Up’ is a punchy, attitudinal interpretation of pop punk. This is a fun little tune from the Swedish rockers. As many Swedes do, these guys seem to have an affinity for the garage rock genre, but these guys are bringing a poppier, spunkier flavor to that sound. The female-led performance further separates these guys from the crowd. They have a meaningfully … Continue reading Death by Horse’s ‘Summer’s Up’ Is Punchy Swedish Pop Punk

‘Left Out in the Sun’ by First Round’s on Me Is Bass-Heavy Alt-Rock

‘Left Out in the Sun’ by First Round’s on Me is a prescient, groovy alternative rock track. These guys describe themselves as an “alternative/garage rock band in Chicago,” made up of “members influenced by classic rock, thrash metal, indie rock, blues and just about anything in between.” This, the band says, “is a personal song about struggling with working too much and finding time to … Continue reading ‘Left Out in the Sun’ by First Round’s on Me Is Bass-Heavy Alt-Rock

‘My Vision’ by Cold Lands Is Tight, Atmospheric Prog Rock

‘My Vision’ by Cold Lands is a precise, deeply atmospheric take on progressive rock. The band is described as, “an atmospheric rock project in which,” bandleader Alexandre Martorano “writes, composes and performs.” Martorano started the band after attending, “a classical music school where he studied classical guitar for eight years.” He “began writing his first compositions in 2004.” This is an impressive track. The way … Continue reading ‘My Vision’ by Cold Lands Is Tight, Atmospheric Prog Rock

‘Girlfriend’ by Small Words Is a Strong Take on Traditional Pop Punk

‘Girlfriend’ by Small Words is a clean, crunchy take on a radio-friendly iteration of pop punk. These guys describe themselves as, “an energetic indie rock band out of Indianapolis, IN.” This year, the band will release a new record titled Good Day, Bad Me. “The album explores the struggles of addiction, grief, depression, and accepting one’s own mortality,” the band says. “In these trying times we need to … Continue reading ‘Girlfriend’ by Small Words Is a Strong Take on Traditional Pop Punk

Pedro the Lion’s ‘The Quietest Friend’ Is the Most Introspective Indie Rock

Pedro the Lion’s ‘The Quietest Friend’ is some deep, folky indie rock from this prolific singer-songwriter. “In August 2016,” a press release reads, “during what he now recognizes as his lowest point, David Bazan was touring the country alone in an aging minivan and found himself in his hometown of Phoenix.” Before taking off the next morning “Bazan gave himself the gift of a quick … Continue reading Pedro the Lion’s ‘The Quietest Friend’ Is the Most Introspective Indie Rock

Paragon’s ‘Chaos Order Chaos’ Is Pop Rock with Brains

Paragon’s ‘Chaos Order Chaos’ is some sweet, expansive and deeply melodic pop rock with a sad, punky approach. These guys describe themselves as an “alternative rock band out of Hampton Roads, Virginia” with a sound aiming “to bridge the gap between a more vibed out indie, alternative sound and heavier aspects of rock.” The band describes this track as, “an escape from the duality of … Continue reading Paragon’s ‘Chaos Order Chaos’ Is Pop Rock with Brains

Small Town Glow’s ‘Speed Trap’ Is Robust Upstate Pop Punk

Small Town Glow’s ‘Speed Trap’ is some thick, energetic pop punk with some Upstate New York attitude. This “is the debut track for Small Town Glows upcoming EP You’re Welcome to be released February 14,” the band says. “Small Town Glow is the rock band alias created by songwriter and sole permanent member, Josh Robin.” In a lot of ways, this is a pretty standard … Continue reading Small Town Glow’s ‘Speed Trap’ Is Robust Upstate Pop Punk