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mskam:

He’s a little bit country, I’m a little bit ska and soul.

Two of the finest singers ever to call Houston home will be hosting a “Karaoke Showdown” on Saturday, 09/20/2014 at MKT Bar.

This. Looks. Amazing.

nprbooks:

FACT: There is such a thing as rainbow bookshelf wallpaper. In case you were wondering.

-Nicole

(h/t Buzzfeed Books)

Hey @jennui! It’s rainbow bookshelf wallpaper! It will be perfect for our new home!

(via teachingliteracy)

Indeed.

(via teachingliteracy)

it8bit:

Inventory

Created by Robert Pufahl

Ummm… Yeah. I want this shirt.

johndarnielle:

mostlysignssomeportents:

meeshay:

soberchipmunk:

made a thing to wear at d&d tomorrow :3

this is cute

Ultimate D&D tee

see the tools on the table - the colors, the brushes, the stencils? that’s called commitment 

Could someone make me this t-shirt? It’s perfect for D&D and any other RPG one might enjoy.

Houston! I encourage you to make it out to Mango’s on Friday, 09/12/2014 to catch The Sour Notes as the Austin/Houston band celebrates the release of its new record - Do What May. This is such an excellent, kinetic, and talented indie-pop band, and with a lineup that includes The Wheel Workers (one of my favorite Houston bands), Guess Genes (including Sergio of Buxton), and Jealous Creatures, you shouldn’t miss this show!

Love Inks
Exi
Republic of Music; 2014

I’ll be the first to admit that we’re probably passed the tipping point regarding the influx of minimalist art-pop music into the popular musical consciousness. The key components of the genre have been around for decades, and the aesthetic peeks its head up every 5 or 7 years to test the waters - Kraftwerk, Can, Bauhaus, Cocteau Twins, The Knife, The xx - but it feels like we’ve been inundated with the stuff for the last 18 months. The sound is all over leading indie music blogs, and I probably receive at least 1 new e-mail a week touting yet another duo featuring some stripped-down combination of vocals, synths, and bass.

Yet, when Exi from Love Inks crossed my digital desk last month, I found myself excited again about what can still happen from this style of music. This Austin, TX trio has put together 10 tracks of enigmatic pop that borrows from folk and singer-songwriter tropes maybe more than it relies upon post-punk and dream-pop stylings. The record is curiously direct with little pretense, which allows for the clean melodic structure to anchor the songs with substance.

Elegant, sparse production is the name of the game, but its the lovely alto of Sherry LeBlanc that helps the group stand out from its contemporaries. Her voice is relatively unadorned with the sort of reverb and echo that drowns and obscures more hyped singers, but the effect is much more welcoming and allows for a personal connection of sorts. Once you’re sitting on the couch across from Sherry, Kevin Dehan and Zach Biggs fill in the sonic spaces ever-so-slightly with a clean mix of simply synth pulses, light and jazzy guitar chords, bass lines that echo on the root notes, and metronomic drum programming.

The overall effect is entrancing without being intoxicating, as Exi is content to sit still and be reflective, while welcoming you to do the same. Standout cuts like “Dawn / Poem,” “I Don’t Hear That,” “Exi,” and “Spirit Communication” resist the urge to either increase volume to attract your attention or drift away into the ether in feigned indifference. Instead coming across as a banal or clinical experience that could put you to sleep, loveinks inculcates a restful experience that also encourages you to engages your senses.

Cayetana
Nervous Like Me
Tiny Engines; 2014
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Let’s get the hyperbole out of the way right off the bat: Nervous Like Me is one of my favorite records of 2014. I can’t imagine the passionate brand of punk rock created by cayetanaphilly being kicked out of the Top Ten over the 4 months remaining in this year. These 11 songs dredge up a host of over-the-top superlatives, the sort that make me come across as an obsequious fan-boy, instead of a proper music critic. Whatever - the music crafted by these 3 strong Philly women is bristling, driven, and kinetic in all the right ways.
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Yes, it’s at this juncture that I’m supposed to make mention of “Riot Grrrl” as a way to showcase my knowledge of music history, but you can’t just toss out Sleater-Kinney and Bikini Kill just because this band is comprised solely of women. Doing so actually denigrates that movement’s principles, while not giving Cayetana its due as a creative entity. Thus, while Kelly Olsen, Allegra Anka, and Augusta Koch are fantastic descendants of Kathleen Hanna, Carrie Brownstein, and Corin Tucker, I also hear gobs of ‘90s emo-punk and ‘80s jangle-pop. Jawbreaker, Avail, and Small Brown Bike come immediately to mind, especially in how propulsive and hook-laden these tunes are.

This is archetypal road trip music, as it’s ready made for sing-alongs belted with friends, frenetic air drumming, and flailing air guitar. For the most part, the drumming is bright and tight, but a bit of syncopation seeps on occasion to provide some necessary flavor to the pacing. Strong guitar punch dominates the mix, but never of the sloppy or lo-fi variety, choosing instead for straight-ahead, crunchy overdrive. But it’s the combination of the counterpoint runs in the stellar bass licks and the off-kilter vocals that make my music theory heart go pitter-pat, as they provide the necessary edge to the band’s melodic core.
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From the instant that “Serious Things are Stupid” kicks in to when “South Philly” winds to a close, it’s obvious that Cayetana has penned an amazing debut record. A youthful spirit is balanced by mature lyrical sensibilities that convey a band wise beyond its collective years. And with key tracks like “Madame B,” “Scott, Get the Van, I’m Moving,” and “Hot Dad Calendar” leading the charge, Nervous Like Me expresses fully formed musical ideas amidst gregarious punk rock energy. If you’re a fan of acts like Waxahatchee, Slingshot Dakota, football etc., or The Hotelier, you’ll really love what you hear with this album.

It’s September! So, even though we’re already in the 2nd week of the month, here’s my second installment of “My Favorite Records of 2014.”

Let me know what you think about this list, and be sure to share what you’ve loved so far in 2014!

XLR8R Podcast #339 - Adam Marshall

FACT Magazine Mix #455 - Airhead

Resident Advisor Podcast #398 - AnD

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Burn Your Fire for No Witness - Angel Olson

Earth Beat - Be Forest

Angels & Devils - The Bug

Hubba Bubba - Damaged Bug

Resident Advisor Podcast #412 - Dana Ruh

Permanence - Deathmole

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Sunburn - Direct Effect

Fact Magazine Mix #413 - DJ TLR

Resident Advisor Podcast #423 - Dusky

Asiatisch - Fatima Al Qadiri

Vol. 5  - Flava D

FACT Magazine Mix #447 - Forest Swords

1234567890qwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnm - Four Tet

XLR8R Podcast #336 - Frankie Knuckles

Glass Boys - Fucked Up

Comfort & Safety - Hoax Hunters

Honeyblood - Honeyblood

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Home, Like Noplace Is There - The Hotelier

FACT Magazine Mix #453 - Ikonika

XLR8R Podcast #358 - Ital

D A G O B A H - Jett I Masstyr

Split EP - Joie de Vivre / Prawn

Little Red - Katy B

Resident Advisor Podcast #400 - Kode9

Crisis EP - La Armada

Hour of the Dawn - La Sera

Containing a Thousand EP - Lakker

Resident Advisor Podcast #409 - Legowelt

Resident Advisor Podcast #421 - Lena Willikens

Mess - Liars

Sedated EP - Lilac Daze

Reality Testing - Lone

XLR8R Podcast #329 - Lucy

Residents Advisor #427 - Luke Abbott

Electronic Explorations #303 - Luke Vibert

FACT Magazine Mix #432 - Luke Vibert

One More ‘Round the Sun - Mastodon

XLR8R Podcast #345 - Matrixxman

Resident Advisor Podcast #429 - Moire

Electronic Explorations #325 - Monoak

World Peace is None of Your Business - Morrissey

XLR8R Podcast #430 - Mister Saturday Night

Alex I am Nothing - Museum Mouth

Stranger Songs - My Fictions

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Hard Boiled Soft Boiled - Odonis Odonis

Two - Owls

Phox - Phox

Kingfisher - Prawn

FACT Magazine Podcast #443 - Rabit

XLR8R Podcast #353 - Randomer

Resident Advisor Podcast #410 - Rivet

…And Then You Shoot Your Cousin - The Roots

Cursing the Sea - September Girls

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Songs Without Bridges - Shellee Coley

Resident Advisor #425 - South London Ordnance

Sylvan Esso - Sylvan Esso

FACT Magazine Mix #448 - Throwing Snow

It’s Album Time - Todd Terje

Make Out King & Other Stories of Love - The Tontons

Resident Advisor #419  - Traxman

Joyland - Trust

Tweens - Tweens

imageShut Up - Two Knights

Monuments - Ume

Electronic Explorations #319 - Volte-Face

Lost in the Dream - The War on Drugs

88 92 - Wild Moccasins