what the hell? what the hell is this? a post? yeah, bitches, i’m back. hopefully, for a while, because there’s been a shitload of great new music that’s been making waves this year. let’s kick things off with goldroom, the solo project of los angeles-based josh legg (formerly of nightwaves). solo, legg’s work has all the qualities of the chillwave movement, namely balearic beats and swirling, dreamy synths. but on “fifteen,” legg’s beach pop takes on a cinematic focus on nu-disco, complete with chant-along chorus and handclaps. sublime. for fans of teen daze, m83, and new build.
toronto threesome austra specializes in a very danceable form of gothy disco-pop, helmed by the operatic voice of frontwoman katie stelmanis. the band’s past is typically vague, but in this case the music can speak for itself. haunting, beautiful, and above all, catchy, the band’s lead single “lose it” is a swirling blend of everything you could ever want from electropop: thudding beats, floating synths, and vocals to die for. seriously. this girl has some friggin’ pipes. listen and download below.
feel it break is out may 17 on domino.
holy ghost! are a nyc-based duo signed to the venerable dfa label (of lcd soundsystem, juan maclean, and hot chip fame, among others). while holy ghost! has been producing singles and remixes for years, they’ve yet to release their debut. now slated for 2011, their self-titled is getting lots of anticipation in the new-disco scene. from lead single “wait & see,” it’s well-deserved; the under-4-minute ditty has enough power to stick with you for days. simple and catchy, with plain lyrics and a tears-for-fears-meets-joy-division vibe, there’s enough new wave here for you to sink your teeth into. electropop at its very finest. enjoy a free download below.
- holy ghost! – wait & see (mp3)
holy ghost! is out april 2 on dfa.
portland duo YACHT have been relatively quiet since 2009’s see mystery lights, but now the dance-rockers are back with “dystopia (the earth is on fire),” a disco-leaning jam with fierce synths and a chanted chorus that’ll get stuck in your head for days.
it’s not clear whether the single is on an as-yet unreleased album or just a one-off, but i’m seriously hoping for the latter it’s an album! it’s called shangri-la, out soon. check out the release video below, part of dfa’s white out sessions, in which someone plays a new track from one of the label’s artists on a turntable in their office.
updated for an mp3: you can download the track for free from YACHT’s soundcloud! joyous day!
danish punkers iceage may be young, but their impeccable hooks and spirited riffs are undeniable. their debut full-length, new brigade, fuses post-punk and new wave influences with the classic punk-rock aesthetic, forming a 24-minute powerhouse that blisters through each track but forms an indelible impression. melt your face with two free downloads of album highlights “new brigade” and “collapse,” below.
iceage – “new brigade” (mp3)
iceage – “collapse” (mp3)
the new division is exactly what their name implies – a formidable combination of joy division and new order aesthetics – without all the horrifying ways in which that could go wrong. vocals drenched in reverb beneath layers of melodic synths and mournful guitars, all while a thudding beat keeps things in motion. it’s dreamy and contemplative while still being danceable and engaging, resulting in a spiritual homage that never strays into cover band territory. this is a tribute, yes, but the new division is still markedly their own. their debut ep the rookie is a moody showcase that verges on electropop. standouts like “nocturnal” and “bucharest” prominently feature starry-eyed synths that dance and soar, while “starfield” evokes a more shoegazey aspect. it’s a through-and-through solid release, one of the best debuts in recent memory and definitely an all-star of 2011.
the new division – the rookie is available for streaming/purchase at bandcamp.