Friday, February 11, 2011

Follow The Links :: Winter 2011

Welcome one and all to Follow The Links, a new feature where we will gather up the finest in free, legal, and highly recommended new music streams and downloads. With the advent of Bandcamp and Soundcloud, as well as the generosity of the artists themselves, the discovery of your new favorite band, album, or rare live recording has never been easier. Although we will continue to post audio content in our regular features, Follow The Links will allow us to point you to music deserving of your attention in a consolidated and concise format. We hope you find this exercise to be a fruitful one and by all means feel free to share your thoughts and suggestions on this and future installments.

We Are Losers - The Newbridge, Kildare, IRL fuzz poppers issued their 3 song debut last summer and hooked us in immediately. The band has just posted a brand new track, Cheerleader, two and half minutes of sublime indie pop that you will find below. You can also download the bands debut EP from their bandcamp site.

We Are Losers - Cheerleader


Maritime - it's been a full four years since Maritime released any new music and eight since Davey von Bohlen and Dan Didier formed the band out of the ashes of the highly influential and in our eyes criminally over looked, The Promise Ring. On April 5th Maritime will release LP #4, Human Hearts on Dangerbird Records. The band is currently giving away the track Paraphernalia at the cost of your e-mail address at their site. We have also posted the track below , mainly because it's an irresistible pop song and we think you should hear it.

Maritime - Paraphernalia

Chris North & the Love Parade - In late December Chris North fronter for Boston's American/Irish folk outfit The Points North, somewhat quietly released this self titled EP. As a genre we usually don't go for a lot of the "folk" stuff but there is something about these songs as well as North's Music with The Points North that strikes a chord with us. Beautiful and haunting all at once. Chris has made these songs available at his Bandcamp site for free however we request that you support his efforts with a donation of $5.00 or more.

Shows: Chris North will play Gay Gardens performance space in Allston on 2/18 and The Points North will play T.T. The Bears on 2/24 with The Craters.

Bandcamp/The Points North/Twitter

The Bigger Lovers - We were flat out ecstatic when we heard that Philadelphia's purveyors of intelligent power pop were reuniting and reissuing their fantastic debut album How I Learned To Stop Worrying. As if that wasn't enough the band has just released their first new music since 2004's This Affair Never Happened… and Here are Eleven Songs About It, in the form of the new digital EP dubbed, The Little Giant Maxi-Single. Technically this one isn't free,but it's pretty close, four songs for a measly $4.00. The EP can be streamed and purchased over at The Bigger Lovers Bandcamp page or at finer digital retailers. You might as well pre-order the bands debut on limited edition 180 gram vinyl while you're at it. The Bigger Lovers have announced one hometown show in March, but we're totally hopping that the band adds some additional dates,like uh um Boston!


Yuck - Ever since releasing their debut single, last March these Londoners have been planted firmly on our radar as well as the rest of the interwebs. On February 15th Yuck will release their highly anticipated self titled debut and will answer the question that all blog buzzed bands must eventually address, was the hype justified? Based on the amount of time we've spent listening to the tracks that occupy their first long player, the answer is a resounding yes. You can hear a handful of these songs at the bands Soundcloud and Bandcamp pages.

Yuck - Holing Out

Low -Deluth,MN's slow core/minimalist legends are set to return on April 12th with C'mom via Sub-Pop. The 10 track album was recorded at Sacred Heart Studios, a former catholic church and where they tracked 2002's Trust. The albums cover art has some local ties, it was snapped by Boston music blogger and all around nice guy, Brad Searles from Bradley's Almanac. Low have just announced a tour in support of C'mon that will have them in town for a show at the soon to be reopened Paramount Center on April 29th. Try to Sleep is the first track revealed from C'mon and it's yours in exchange for your electronic address.


Gruff Rhys - Originally intended as an album of piano ballads to lament his 40th birthday, thankfully that plan went a little off course in favor of impeccably constructed albeit off kilter pop songs (with horns) from the Super Furry Animals fronter. Rhys' third solo outing will be released in the U.K. on February 14th on Turnstile, however U.S. fans will have to wait until May 3rd before we can get our mitts on Hotel Shampoo via Wichita Recordings. As of yesterday you can now listen to the album in it's entirety at The Gruffington Post or on the widget that you'll find below.

Gruff Rhys - Sensations in The Dark [Video]

Listen To Hotel Shampoo
The Gruffington Post/Facebook

Fat History Month - These Boston lo-fi noise makers and frequent basement dwellers are responsible for one of our current favorite releases, First Tape which includes a ramshackle cover of Daniel Johnston's Casper The Friendly Ghost, among other noise drenched nuggets. Due to limited information available on line it's unclear when this album was actually released, we think and hope recently. The band makes regular appearances throughout the New England underground. They play Gay Gardens, Allston on March 26th with State Champion. Up until about 24hrs ago First Tape was available at Bandcamp, however it has since been taken down. Until we can locate that fine release, we hope you will find consultation in the track we found as the Bedroom Suck Records Soundcloud page.

Fat History Month - Money=Time=Death

Official/Bedroom Sucks

The Skull Defekts - Often referred to as Sweden's answer to Sonic Youth, The Skull Defekts have been at the center of the Swedish experimental scene since their inception in 2005 and for good reason,. On February 15th the band returns with Peer Amid on Thrill Jockey with a fifth member in tow, Daniel Higgs of Lungfish, who supplies vocals, chants, and various instrumentation. The bands label is offering the album track Fragrant Nimbus as a free download, go get it.

The Skull Defekts - Fragrant Nimbus
Thrill Jockey/Official/Facebook

Robert Pollard / GBV - What would this exercise be without the inclusion of Uncle Bob and his various vehicles for his seemingly endless deluge of material. With the near perfect, Space City Kicks already under his belt this year and collaborative releases from Lifeguards with former GBV guitarist Doug Gillard which will be released next week, as well as Mars Classroom with Big Dipper's Gary Waliek due in late March. There's plenty for us Pollard fans to look forward to in the very near future. You can hear the lead track off The Lifeguards' Waving at The Astronauts, Paradise Is Not So Bad at Serious Business Records. Not to mention that the reunion of Guided By Voices classic line up is alive and well and they have just added a couple more live dates, including one at this years Sasquatch Festival in Seattle. We're hoping for another trip east from Dayton but until then we're happy to find this bootleg from the Isolation Drills tour. GBVDB, the encyclopedic on-line resource for everything and anything you wanted to know about Guided By Voices and Robert Pollard, have recently unearthed The Last of The No Hit Wonders, Live at The Mercury, Austin, TX 06/17/01 and offered it as a free download. We remember this tour fondly which included some highlights from Suitcase as well as the bands TVT years.

Download The Last of The No Hit Wonders from GBVDB

[MP3/Stream] Guided By Voices - Settlement Down [Live in Autin]

Robert Pollard

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