Jouk Mistrow – Oh Well

Some gentle melancholy from Jouk Mistrow. They come straight out of Brisbane, Australia, making them the 5th or 6th Aussie band that I’ve been impressed with recently. What are they putting in the water over there?

For fans of: The Virgins, Arctic Monkeys

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Ratboys – Have A Heart

A slow burner here from Chicago’s Ratboys. “Have A Heart” is a ponderous acoustic number that suddenly breaks into life mid-way through the track. It reminds me a little of the likes of Calexico, or Adore-era Smashing Pumpkins. Their earlier work seems stunted by low production values, but their forthcoming LP Space Blows seems ripe to correct this.

For fans of: Calexico, Best Coast

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Wild Ones – Dim The Lights

Teaser track from the second album (that’s “sophomore effort” in music journalist speak, right?) by Portland’s Wild Ones. It’s catchy.

For fans of: Ladyhawke, electronica

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Strange Wilds – Starved For

Raging guitars feature more prominently than well-crafted lyrics in this one, but sure doesn’t everyone need a few more raging guitars in their life? Definitely, the people of Olympia, Washington. After all, it rains there virtually all the time, and they’re overrun with wimpy vampires and stuff. Strange Wilds have answered their prayers.

For fans of: And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead

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Bully – I Remember

Some really fast-paced, semi-screamy, female-fronted pop-punk from Nashville’s “Bully”. I’d always regarded Nashville as a country music town (and it is), but the list of impressive rock bands coming out of there is growing. Bully are aiming strictly at the 3-minute wonder territory here, but they find their target.

For fans of: The Distillers, Hole, Blondie

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Foals – What Went Down

Stop everything. There’s a new Foals single! This is the title track from the forthcoming album “What Went Down”, available at the end of August. At first listen, it’s not quite classic Foals material, and I guess is more closely related to “Inhaler” than their other tracks. There’s hardly an iota of treble to be heard throughout the track. Still, there’s an intensity about the track that still makes it a good listen. I’m optimistic about the album.

For fans of: Foals, Drenge.

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Hail The Ghost – Headstoned

I’m fairly sure that I once played a gig with these guys in Sweeney’s on Dame St. when they were under the name White McKenzie. Anyway, better known as the band that feature that Garda who played a Garda in Love/Hate whilst still actually being a bone fide Garda, they now seem to be known as Hail The Ghost, and this is from their current album. They seem to be very much into that “The National”-sound, if there is such a thing.

For fans of: The National.

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Kins – Young

First release from Australia-via-Brighton band Kins’ second album. At first listen, it sounds a little less left-field than their debut efforts, but it retains the quirky vocals and oddball synth rhythms that you may already know and love. Overall, it shows promise of things to come.

For fans of: Bombay Bicycle Club, Hot Chip.

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The Districts – Peaches

Like The Strokes? Then you will likely like The Districts.

For fans of: The Strokes, Kins.

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Muse – Dead Inside

In short, it’s not bad. They’ve foregone some of the electro madness of the previous record on this one, although it’s so hyper-produced that it’s hard to pick out anything authentic about their current sound.

For fans of: Muse.

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