It's April 1 here at HDJz HQ and that means one thing and one thing only. Spring cleaning! After disassembling and steam cleaning the Capresso 121.01 Ultima Semi-Automatic Coffee and Espresso/Cappuccino Machine, sweeping the dirt out from under our titanium Herman Miller Aeron Chairs, and calibrating the chlorine/bromine ratio in the hot tub, we were ready to find some Jammz. (Well, we thought we were but then we realized we'd rather go hit the links for a quick round with the crew from Accounting.) Luckily, we found this batch of Jammz gems tucked behind Lil Roscoe's doggie bed. He's a Sussex spaniel and he's just the sweetest little puppy! Anyway.... the Jammz!
Following last year’s SXSW showcase, Icelandic shoegaze quintet Barbeque BBQ settled down in Texas. Chalk it up to heat stroke, but their new album Hanker for a Hunka Hrokkinkani is a drastic departure. The dense dreamscapes are glitched to bits, and Gunner’s once sweet vocals sound exasperated; kind of like a cat being cooked on a hot tin roof.
Initially Britpop revivalists who held the golden age of Blur and Menswear near and dear, this quartet went in a very different direction soon after forming. Experiments with sensory deprivation, the Uncanny Valley phenomenon, and band practices held in complete darkness resulted in a bold new sound.
Combine the electro-pop of MGMT with the lo-fi shitgaze of No Age, steep the whole thing in a steaming hot mug of irreverence and you have the abrasive dance pop of Donut Wizard. Their debut, Wzzrdss, is sure to leave a trail of blown speakers and sweat drenched headbands in its wake.
Dorkenkork & the Hairshirts
We don't really know much about this mystery band from Baltimore. There's a rumor going around that it's a surf-noise super group made up of members of Miisspleed, the Pink Punx and Yawwn. That would be pretty great but even if it's not true there's no denying that D-Kork & the Shirts have a unique and thrilling sound. Overloaded surf guitars, reverbed-out vocals, and laundry room drums combined with garage girl songcraft and wobbly, underwater synths make for a sound you don't hear every day. Their first cassette (Acid Washed In) is out this summer as a co-release from Captured Tracks, Lefse and Woodsist.
Separately the two rappers DJ Doe and MC Nutz have been going strong for awhile; for some reason they recently joined forces as Ghost Duck and we're glad they did. Their sound hits the sweet spot between D.A.I.S.Y. Age hip hop and cracked out Acieed! revival. The stand out jam on their first album Turkey Ghost is the guaranteed dance floor filler "In and Out Fever".
Harkening back to the Milkmen days of "Bitchin' Camero," Austin's Goof Decision bring back the sunshine-y, cheeky pop-punk in full force. Check out the tracks "We Only Tried Thrice" and "Wax Her Back."
While it may sound like a band with stricter beard requirements than Clutch and Scissorfight combined, Gutbone makes kitschy experimental electro that frighteningly evokes both Mr. Bungle and Cluster. This will either be your album of the year, or the terrible, eldritch thing that haunts your dreams.
Laughter in Uniform
Angular, post-punk from Pittsburgh, Laughter in Uniform stole the crib sheet to add up the remedial math hooks that would make Polvo, Shellac or Rodan blush. Their new album, Strive to Break Narrow Lines, will be released on Dead Horizon Records later this year.
Straight outta Michigan, like MSTRKRFT and MGMT, they don't need no stinkin' consonants to make dance floors move. Or is that mv?
Robot Blood & Earthstarz
This retro synth-pop duo brings the kitsch of ‘70s glam in their live show, courtesy of lead singer/keytarist, Kelsey “Robot Blood” Tripucha, who prances around in a Zorro mask and glittery unitard to the punchy electro of crowd faves, “That’s so French” and “Mister Macho.”