June 2014

Swans Got Heavy at Mohawk Friday Night

After taking a break from the project and recording and touring as Angels of Light, Michael Gira’s Swans are back in full force. The group reassembled around 2010 after more than a decade…

Exclusive Album Stream: Genuine Leather – Losers

Austin’s Genuine Leather is set to release their second LP, Losers, this week, and for the next few days, Pop Press International is the exclusive place to hear the album. The record is perfect for lazy…

Portland’s Cars & Trains Release New EP

Portland band Cars & Trains just released a new EP, “The Moon and the Earth,” comprised of three somber pop tunes created with acoustic guitars, synths, and toy instruments. The group’s folk and…

Swans & Xiu Xiu Play Mohawk Tonight

Swans is one of those bands that is still quietly under-appreciated while having a still fruitful second life. The band took a hiatus while central creative force Michael Gira wrote and performed music…

Pink Mountaintops Embrace “The Second Summer of Love”

Pink Mountaintops newest effort Get Back, released by Jagjaguwar in April was full of no frills rock ‘n’ roll. A spirit that was more than clear when we spoke with frontman Stephen McBean…

SW/MM/NG Shares Shimmering Summer Anthem

With wet-as-a-pool-party guitars and upbeat rhythms, SW/MM/NG have created “Some Dreams Come True,” a perfect soundtrack for your summer swimming-hole adventures. Despite the easy-going vibes, the song’s content explores an opposing frame of…

Show Preview: Tele Novella, Real Live Tigers, & Sick/Sea at Lambert’s

Tomorrow night, three solid Texas bands will take the stage at Lambert’s BBQ. The upstairs venue has been recruiting more diverse live music acts in recent months. Friday’s show includes psych pop group Tele…

Little Lo Debuts Track from Upcoming LP

Verberation View is the upcoming album from Austin indie-rock outfit Little Lo, who have shared the title track from that forthcoming effort. The record was recorded at Big Orange Studios in Austin with Stuart…

Cinema East Screens Documentary Approaching the Elephant on Sunday

Cinema East kicked off their summer film series this past Sunday with a screening of narrative feature I Believe in Unicorns. The series continues this Sunday, June 29th with a screening of documentary feature Approaching the…

The Mountain Goats’ Anthemic Evening at Mohawk

Everyone sings along when frontman John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats belts out, “I hope the people who did you wrong/ have trouble sleeping at night/ People were mean to you but I always thought you were…

Dear Someone: Don Henley, Domesticity, and Hangover Cures

Walker Lukens is a musician living and working in Austin, Texas. His latest album is called Devoted. His advice column Dear Someone runs semimonthly on Pop Press International. You can send in your own inquiries by emailing…

Cut Copy with Classixx at Stubb’s: Live Review

Sometimes I think I don’t like fun enough. I’d rather watch a provocative, transfixing, and artistically challenging musical performance than hit up a dance party any day of the week. My tendencies often put…

Jess Williamson & RF Shannon Celebrate Split 7″ at Cheer Up Charlies

We’ve been singing the praises of these players for months now. Punctum Records managed to get two of Austin’s best artists on a record together. Last week, the label released a split 7″…

Basketball Shorts Release Song from Split Cassette on Fleeting Youth

Austin garage punk band Basketball Shorts will release a split in digital and cassette formats with Surfin’ Mutants Pizza Party on July 22nd via Fleeting Youth Records. The release will contain six songs…

Ramesh Album Release at Holy Mountain

Friday night, former Voxtrot member Ramesh celebrated the Austin Town Hall Records-issued vinyl release of his album The King with a show at Holy Mountain. In addition to Ramesh, the bill included garage pop trio…

Hikes EP Release at Cheer Up Charlies: Live Review

After seeing Hikes perform a few times, I’m convinced they’re one of Austin’s most exciting bands. The young outfit of math rock musicians are closely affiliated with rising DIY collective Raw Paw, who sponsored the…

Tweedy at ACL Taping: Live Review

Last Friday and Saturday, Jeff Tweedy came to Austin for two nights, including the ACL taping for the PBS shows 40th season we witnessed, where he treated the studio audience to a marked night…

Thus Owls Nominated for Polaris Prize, Support Antlers in Austin

Montreal’s Thus Owls are having quite a summer. The band has received praise from an array of press outlets surrounding their new album Turning Rocks, available now on Secret City Records, and recent performances at…

Electric Six & Yip Deceiver at Stubb’s Tonight

Austin is one of the rare cities in America where any given night has too many great options for live music. We love it, and we hate it. If you aren’t going to the…

Gramercy Arms Release Video for Indie Pop Track “Always In Love”

New York-based indie pop collective Gramercy Arms have released an upbeat black-and-white video for their song “Always In Love,” the single from their upcoming album Seasons of Love, set for a July 21st release…

Voxtrot’s Ramesh Album Release Show Tonight at Holy Mountain

Thanks to our friends at Austin Town Hall Records, Ramesh’s first solo album The King, is being released on vinyl. A celebration of that occasion, sponsored by blog buddies Austin Town Hall and Side…

Hikes Celebrates New EP with Epic Cheer Up Charlies Show

Hikes is one of Austin’s most exciting young bands. Their distinct blend of folk, math rock, and whimsical joy places them in a category of their own in this city’s robust music scene. As…

See Colorful New Video from Wild Beasts

Wild Beasts’ album Present Tense is out now on Domino Records and available for purchase. Today the band shared a colorful new video directed by Kate Moross in support of that album. The video…

Kids Battle Monsters in Mother Falcon’s New Video for “Marigold”

Orchestral collective Mother Falcon are out on tour, they just released their first ever vinyl, a 7″ on Punctum Records, and now they’ve shared a new music video for “Marigold,” from their most…

Johan Hedberg Shares Swedish Pop Track “Kickar Grus”

Although Belle & Sebastian are decidedly the most known and celebrated indie pop or twee band to come out of Europe, those countries, particularly in Scandinavia, have a long history of these musical…

Wand Shares Noisy Psych Track “Flying Golem”

On August 27th, Wand will release of Ganglion Reef on Drag City’s sister imprint GOD?, joining bands such as Jack Name and White Fence. This week, Wand shared “Flying Golem,” the first single from the upcoming…

Party Plants Release Video for “Great Interplanetary Romance”

Austin-based lo-fi quirk pop band Party Plants have released a DIY video for their song “Great Interplanetary Romance.” I’ve written before about how the band reminds me of one of my favorites, Beat…

RF Shannon / Jess Williamson Split Out Today, Release Show Saturday at Cheer Up Charlies

We’ve already told you how excited we are for RF Shannon & Jess Williamson’s split 7″, out today on Punctum Records. Both artists will celebrate the release with a show on Saturday at…

Hear New Löwin Track “Lobo”

Löwin’s new song “Lobo” showcases everything that has always drawn me to Sara Houser’s work. Front and center in the mix are Houser’s astounding vocals, and her lyricism takes center stage. The song…

Bleached Shares “For the Feel” From Upcoming 7″ on Dead Oceans

It’s summertime, and no one makes a better soundtrack for the season than Bleached. This is an impromptu road trip across the American West with only a backpack and a pocket full of…

Fun Fun Fun Fest Reveals Daily Lineups, 1-Day Passes On Sale Now

I have no idea what human powers of decision would allow an individual to choose between these three days of fest. The lineup is so killer for every day. I suppose I could…

Mutual Benefit Announces Cowboy’s Prayer EP Reissue, Extensive Tour

Mutual Benefit’s exquisite, multi-textured pop has impressed me as much or more than anyone in the past couple of years with 2013’s Love’s Crushing Diamond. Today the group announced that Other Music will re-release their 2011…

Pillar Point on Tour Now, Will Support of Montreal on Fall Dates

Come October, labelmates Pillar Point and of Montreal will head out on a North American tour together. Preceding that fall engagement, many cities across the country will have an opportunity to see Pillar Point…

Generate Your Own Unique Video for Isaac Delusion’s “Pandora’s Box”

French electronic pop group Isaac Delusion will release a new self-titled album via Cracki Records later this year in the U.S., while the album is already out in Europe and available on French iTunes. The…

Wearing My Heart on My Sleeve: I Love Kanye West

Because it’s so easy, hating Kanye West seems like an uninteresting thing to do. Disliking Kanye West, or better yet, liking his music, but not liking “him as a person,” emerges as the…

Castanets Return with Excellent New Song, “Out For The West”

The early 200os rise of indie folk shaped what music I fell in love with during my formative years of discovering independent music. Among those artists was Raymond Raposa’s project Castanets. I listened to…

Spoon Shares “Rent I Pay” From Upcoming LP They Want My Soul

I’ve been meaning to post the new Spoon all week. Although it’s unlikely, if you somehow managed to miss it all week, you’re welcome! If you’ve seen it slathered everywhere, as I have,…

El Campo Celebrates New 7″ Tonight at Cheer Up Charlies

Rollicking folk has increased in popularity drastically over the last decade. Many bands do it, but El Campo is among the best. The group channels the energy of early Okkervil River and the melodies…

Annie Street Arts Collective Plans July Residency at Spiderhouse

Devoted fans of Austin’s DIY and folk communities recently lamented the end of Annie Street Arts collective, who had to make the move from the space where they’ve hosted countless DIY shows due…

Cleanup & Chipper Jones at Cheer Up Charlie’s: Review & Photos

Earlier this week, instrumentally-focused math rock bands Chipper Jones and Cleanup played at Cheer Up Charlie’s. Both bands are part of a current trend that’s seeing a revival of styles of indie rock…

33 1/3 Series Announce 14 New Titles

If you’ve ever perused the endcaps at a local, independent record or book store, it’s likely you’ve seen the pocket-sized book series 33 1/3. Each of the volumes in the series focuses on a…

Cinema East Set for Summer Film Series

With Austin tastemaker Maggie Lea in the curatorial role, Cinema East is set for an amazing summer film series. Now in its fourth year of existence, the program continues to increase its reach…

Bishop Allen Shares New Video for “Start Again”

We previously brought you the news that New York indie pop band Bishop Allen has announced a long awaited full-length album, Lights Out, set for an August 19th release date via Dead Oceans. Frontman…

Album Review: White Reaper – White Reaper

Louisville, Kentucky’s latest band spawn doesn’t carry the slightest whiff of bluegrass or the faintest whisper of country charm. White Reaper leaves the acoustic ramblings in the dust with their self-titled debut EP…

Early to the Party: An Open Letter to the Tallest Man in the Entire Concert Venue

– Karen Early is a comedian and human being living in Austin, TX. She performs and organizes the weekly Megaphone Show on Saturdays at the New Movement Theater. Her column Early to the…

Watch Swedish Pop Band JJ’s Emotionally Arresting Video for “All White Everything”

Swedish pop outfit JJ will release their new LP, V, on August 19th via Secretly Canadian. Today, the label shared from that record, the debut video for “All White Everything.” Vocally driven and dynamic,…

Kanye West, Flaming Lips, & Extreme Sports at X-Games Austin

In its 20th year of existence and first of four years in Austin, the summer X-Games, hosted last weekend at Circuit of the Americas, triumphed as a diverse and rare weekend of entertainment….

Bear In Heaven Shares “Time Between,” Announces New LP on Dead Oceans

Bear In Heaven’s new single “Time Between” possesses undeniable grooves. The song’s buzzing synths and relentless snare provide the backbone for Jon Philpot’s reverb-tinged vocals as well as wonderfully nuanced bass and guitar…

FPSF Highlights from a Former Houstonian

Editor’s note: this year, Austin-based music blog Pop Press International is so lucky to showcase not one but two different articles from the perspective of native Houstonians. Read on for these highlights from…

Dear Someone: Elvis, Austin Tourism, and Folkaphobia

Walker Lukens is a musician living and working in Austin, Texas. His latest album is called Devoted. His advice column Dear Someone runs semimonthly on Pop Press International. You can send in your own inquiries by emailing…

Hear an Unreleased Extra Track from Abram Shook’s Sun Marquee

We love Austin musician Abram Shook’s album Sun Marquee, which dropped early this year on Western Vinyl. Shook, one of Austin’s most lauded bassists, is also a member of psych pop trio Feverbones. Sun Marquee came…

New Track: The Rosebuds – “In My Teeth”

The Rosebuds have announced the followup to their last release of original material, the Christmas themed album Christmas Tree Island. Western Vinyl will release Sand + Silence on August 5th. The new track features mellow…

We Went to X-Games Austin and Had a Blast

After three hot, sweaty, fun-filled days out at Circuit of the America’s for the first installment of what will be at least four years of summer X-Games in Austin, TX, we’re swimming in content….

Hear Local Natives Discuss Their Sound in New Video

Amplifier and audio equipment company McIntosh just released a new video in their “Behind the Sound” series. Past episodes have featured artists such as Deltron 3030, White Denim, and Washed Out. The most…

Hear New Music from Southern Boutique (Members of Tiger Waves)

I’ve been sitting on this news a while, as the band themselves weren’t totally sure what would happen to Tiger Waves. After all, the group managed to work their way into a great…

Clouder Shares New Video for “All The Royal Years Are Gone”

Austin-based garage and punk rock label Fleeting Youth has been incredibly active in their short existence, working not only with bands from this city but also many others across the country. This week,…

Photo Gallery: Our Best Photos from FPSF 2014

We’re proud to present a gallery of our best photographs from this year’s FPSF 2014. All photos below © Bryan Parker & Pop Press International except photos of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic…

FPSF Day 2 Recap Featuring Sylvan Esso, Tune-Yards, and Lauryn Hill

The second day of FPSF 2014 dawned with less chance of rain but warmer temperatures. Often, I find the most rewarding festival experiences happen early in the day. The crowds are thinner, the…

A Summer Staple: FPSF 2014 Photo Essay

As an Austin-based blog, we’ve always viewed FPSF with outstiders’ eyes. This year, we’re excited to publish this photo essay by our new contributor and Houston native Madeline Harvey. Here’s her take on…

Photo Gallery: Shots from the Crowd at FPSF 2014

Rain or shine, Free Press Summer Fest will prevail. We might just have to take a short evacuation. Regardless, FPSF 2014 did not disappoint, and how could it? Each year it houses such a wide…

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Walker Lukens Album Release Show at Stubb’s: Live Review

While Walker Lukens develops his amazing potential and obvious talents as songwriter, vocalist, guitarist, pianist and producer, we are fortunate to witness the test runs.  I missed the first opening act, Hello Wheels,…

FPSF Day 1 Recap Featuring Childish Gambino, Vampire Weekend, and Rain

Considering that all of Eleanor Tinsley Park was evacuated around 2:00 PM preceding some heavy rain in Houston’s downtown area, the first day of FPSF 2014 still proved enjoyable, boasting many outstanding performances….

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