Shook the Rain

Patrick Collins

Finally, my friend Patrick Collins will be playing a show here in Boston. Here’s an original song by him, featuring more instruments than I feel confident identifying, all skillfully wielded by Patrick himself. It’s a lovely song; why not come see it live? (here’s the event)

Tahiti

Magic Magic

Magic Magic is one of those bands who you can’t help but enjoy. And this breezy, hypnotizing track - dreamy but sincere - hits just the right place. “Tahiti” is the sort of song you could include in a mixtape and not suck. Magic Magic has this vaguely 60s lo-fi sound that manages to be still very immediate. In no way are they a throw-back; they’re making good music of and for the present. The Boston locals are as swell to hear as they are to see; a great band all-around.

[check out their bandcamp]

Battle Hymn Sk8step

The Skateboards

Breaks are lovely in that I get to reimmerse in the Philadelphia music scene. This always leads to meeting really excellent new people, becoming better friends with people I’d only encountered briefly before, and acquiring craploads of new and excellent music. Case in point: released almost exactly one year ago by my dear new friend’s band The Skateboards, a cover of Battle Hymn of the Republic that is nothing short of radical.

[be sure to check out their album Bad Dads Doin’ Bad Dad Things. There is literally no way for you to be disappointed.]

crystal truth

Guards

This spacey, bluesy track from the California band Guards is a bit of a different sound from the rest of the EP [available for free on their bandcamp] in terms of influence, but the overall feel of the song fits right in with the self-described “pop wave doom” that the EP embodies. They’re a very fine group, with that muffled not-quite-lo-fi sound that so many try but so few excel in executing. They’ve got it, though. Give them a listen.

Could It Be Christmas?

Jon Lindsay

I love this song. That’s really all there is to say. It’s past the 25th now, so it can’t really be Christmas. But happy Kwanzaa, anyhow.

Wake Up

Dr. Dog

Dr. Dog, in celebration of being home in Philadelphia. One of my very favorite bands, right here. As much as I love their new stuff, I love the hard-core lo-fi going on with earlier albums. And, of course, I am super stoked for the new album.