Psychic Teens

Philadelphia-based Psychic Teens have debuted their digital 7″ single, and while the trio is probably too old to get carded, I definitely want to poke around in their brains after hearing “Yung.” I mean, what on earth possessed them to emulate a Nirvana b-side, but then scrub out the pop and wash it with sounds of the original shoegazer scene? And then half-way through, they turn it into a noise punk blast that hearkens back to the AmRep days when bands would use a vacuum cleaner as an instrument. The track continues to exponentially rumble until it consumes all light and life and maybe even scares itself into ending. I can’t comprehend how they determined this would be a good idea, and yet, it’s really fucking awesome. “Cbbk” is a bit more straightforward, in that the abrasive blast is front and center, and rather than leapfrogging to a few different genres, just rocks all the way through. On both tracks the vocals have nice effects, though they’re mixed a tad low and fairly unintelligible. You only catch words here and there, but I’m almost certain the music IS the message, so I’ve got no qualms with being unable to decipher the lyrics. You can download the goods for free here, but please note you’ve already been warned/encouraged! – Mark H.

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Special Monday Morning Tape – #108

Centro-maticonly in my double mind
(taken from their 2011 release Candidate Waltz)
Cavemanold friend
(taken from their 2011 release CoCo Beware)
The Deep Dark Woodswest side street
(taken from their 2011 release The Place I Left Behind)
Small Surprettyboy
(taken from their 2011 release Tones)
Lil Daggersking corpse
(taken from their 2011 release King Corpse EP)
(taken from their 2011 release Rise On Up and Melt)
Pallerscome rain, come sunshine
(taken from their 2011 release The Sea Of Memories)
(taken from their 2011 release Sundress EP)
Washed Outamor fati
(taken from his 2011 release Within and Without)
Milagreshere to stay
(taken from their 2011 release Glowing Mouth)
Zola Jesusvessel
(taken from her 2011 release Conatus)
Snakes Say Hissssilk strings
(released as a digital single only)

Explosions In The SkyLast Known Surroundings

Crystal StiltsThrough The Floor

The History Of Apple PieTug

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Mini-Beats – June 2011 – Edition 45

JEFF The BrotherhoodWe Are The Champions (2011, Infinity Cat) ♥♥♥♥
:I knew I was going to love this immediately after hearing the opening 30 seconds of swirling 90’s indie guitar jamminess; it’s sweet and hooky when it needs to be and scuzzy/grungy when it loosens up…kudos!: (buy vinyl)
Bill CallahanApocalypse (2011, Drag City) ♥♥♥½
:it took a few spins for Bill’s ultimate charm to reveal itself on Apocalypse; the arrangements reminded me heavily of what Van Morrison achieved on Astral Weeks only peppered with Callahan’s signature (and unmistakable) baritone; my favorite ‘solo’ release out of the big three: (buy vinyl)
The AntlersBurst Apart (2011, Frenchkiss) ♥♥♥
:I couldn’t enter into this listening experience expecting Deuspice but I wasn’t prepared for such a drastic drop-off in quality; the diversity and emotional buildups have more or less disappeared and been replaced with average mellow-core sprinkled with highs (literally… check that falsetto on ‘Parentheses’) and lows (various and sundry cheesy moments throughout the album); RIYL Grizzly Bear: (buy vinyl)
Mumford & SonsSigh No More (2010, V2) ♥♥♥
:don’t cast this rating off as backlash for their enormous explosion in popularity…this is normally my bag…however, the formula of hushed, introspective intro then banjo hoedown breakdown, verse, chorus, verse chorus gets old after about hm, the first 3 tracks: (buy vinyl)
GenerationalsTrust EP (2010, Park The Van) ♥♥♥♥
:this band has officially taken over the spot left blank by Spoon’s last couple of albums; each of these 4 tracks revealed charms on different levels; RIYL The Love Language, Spoon:
Sin FangSummer Echoes (2011, Morr) ♥♥♥
:pleasant and playful collection of tunes from the frontman of Iceland’s premier indie-pop/electronic band, Seabear; those keen on the Morr sound will probably extract a bit more enjoyment from this than I did; RIYL Múm, Tunng: (buy vinyl)
Parenthetical GirlsPrivilege Pt. III: Make and Mend Do EP (2011, Slender Means) ♥♥♥
:surely you’ve heard that the Privilege album will be split up into 5 fairly limited 12″ EP’s, each volume hand-numbered in the blood of a different member of the band; regardless of what you think of the music found within THAT will be hard to top!; RIYL Owen Pallett: (buy vinyl)
Israel Nash GripkaBarn Doors & Concrete Floors (2011, self-released) ♥♥♥
:very accessible rural Southern-influenced rock ‘n folk with Steve Shelley on drums (huh?); I could see this being gobbled up by fans of the current wave of indie/Americana/festival-folk RIYL Neil Young, Ryan Adams:
Dreamers Of The GhettoDreamers Of The Ghetto (2011, self-released) ♥♥♥♥
:a unique Bloomington collective of (mostly) family members with deeply affecting vocals and a rather proletarian feel and approach to their music; we should expect big things from these guys…hopefully a vinyl release of this album…:
Maggie BjörklundComing Home (2011, Bloodshot) ♥♥♥½
:file this under desert-folk with many helpings of spaghetti and pedal steel guitar thrown in for authenticity (Joey Burns from Calexico plays a huge part in this..) plus tasteful vocal appearances by Mark Lanegan, Jon Auer and Rachel Flotard (Visqueen); the Danish-born Björklund is most known for her pedal steel playing and session work as well as her full-time gig, Darleens; RIYL Calexico, Giant Sand: (buy vinyl)
Bon IverBon Iver (2011, Jagjaguwar) ♥♥♥½
:we can all agree that Justin has powerful & easily likeable/discernible vocals but, unlike Forever, they’re rather one-dimensional here and a lot of these songs have no open space to let them breath and develop into memorable passages/chapters; still, most of this is above-average and admittedly better than I expected except for the cringe-inducing, Phil Collins-esque shart that closes up the album…: (buy vinyl)
The DeloreansAmerican Craze (2011, self-released) ♥♥♥♥
:self-described eccentric power-pop from Louisville filtered through show-tunes, modern psychedelia and vaudevillian/baroque pop; a most pleasing experience that very few critics will be able to pinpoint or set to words very easily; couple of these tracks (like the opener and ‘Non’) actually reminded me of Devotchka: (buy vinyl)
Epic45Weathering (2011, Make Mine) ♥♥♥½
:a breeze of an album that strays very little from their tested formula of open-spaced dream-pop; this feels a lot like The Antlers’ Hospice without Peter’s signature falsetto/delivery if you need a reference point:
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.It’s A Corporate World (2011, Warner) ♥♥♥
:there’s a juicy rumor going about that Mr. Zott is actually the lead singer for Victorious Secret, the winners of the contest last year…but as for the music goes I feel like I’ve heard all of these songs before…done much better…aside from the gorgeous single-of-the-year candidate ‘Morning Thought’; RIYL Local Natives, Generationals: (buy vinyl)
Centro-maticCandidate Waltz (2011, Undertow) ♥♥♥
:definitely not Will Johnson’s finest work but these tunes are easy on the ears and his voice is always a welcome addition to any verse/chorus rock formula: (buy vinyl)
Love InksE.S.P. (2011, Hell, Yes) ♥♥♥
:simple, soft-spoken, indie-pop from Austin that begins and ends in a blink of a (black)eye; fans of The XX might dig this: (buy vinyl)
Hunx And His PunxToo Young To Love (2011, Hardly Art) ♥♥♥♥
:a throwback variety of queer-core that champions all that is good with the sub-genre of Spector-influenced garage…handclaps, oohs/aahs, Grease/Rocky Horror flashbacks, his/her call-and-response; if you’re looking for infectious smiles and fun in 2011 consider this your gold standard; next up – ’09’s Gay Singles: (buy vinyl)
Eleventh Dream DayRiot Now (2011, Thrill Jockey) ♥♥½
:I struggled to find any remnants of their occasionally brilliant past; Riot seemed sloppy and disjointed but not in an interesting Chicago scene kinda way: (buy vinyl)
Way YesWalkability (2011, self-released) ♥♥♥½
:couple of dudes from the Columbus, OH area who take advantage of the Afrobeats-and-indiepop trend on their sophomore EP; RIYL The Dodos:

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Graveface Giveaway!

A small while back I made an executive decision to slowly part ways with all but a few CD’s from my collection. Basically my record collection has far surpassed the allotted amount of space to display/house my goods plus I can’t remember the last time I willingly played a CD for something other than reviewing purposes. Lucky for you! I received the above-pictured CD’s as part of the spectacular Graveface Records Club. Members receive every release from the label in every available format (even cassette in some instances!) so I’ve decided to give the CD’s away to one of y’all BTID readers.

The rules are negligible: simply tweet about this mentioning @btidmatt, leave a comment in this here post with your name and e-mail address or like/reblog my Tumblr post about it. In a few weeks I’ll pick a name out of the hat and announce the winnar of swag. Each method of pimpin’ will earn you another ticket in the hat.

What YOU will win:

1. The Appleseed CastMiddle States EP
2. The Loose Salute – Getting Over Being Under
3. Black Moth Super RainbowDandelion Gum (re-issue)
4. Hospital ShipsLonely Twin

MEGABONUS! – (4) Freddy Points! – redeemable for 1 free CD or LP of your choice from the Graveface Records catalog.


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Special Monday Morning Tape – #107

(taken from their 2011 re-issue of Bakesale)
Maggie Bjõrklund
(taken from her 2011 release Coming Home)
Vetiverwonder why
(taken from their 2011 release The Errant Charm)
Starfuckerbury us alive
(taken from their 2011 release Reptilians)
Witchescount to ten
(taken from their 2011 release Forever)
Halloween, Alaskadance by accident
(taken from their 2011 release All Night The Calls Came In)
Collections Of Colonies Of Beeslawn
(taken from their 2011 release GIVING)
Esmerinea dog river
(taken from their 2011 release La Lechuza)
Eleanor Friedbergermy mistakes
(taken from her 2011 release Last Summer)
Iceagebroken bone
(taken from their 2011 release New Brigade)
Delay Treestarantula/holding on
(taken from their 2011 release Delay Trees)
The Elwinstime to kill time
(taken from their 2009 release The Elwins EP)

The Pains Of Being Pure At HeartHeart In Your Heartbreak

Sarah JaffeClementine


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86’d Records


In my backwards brain I always give a bit more credibility to fan labels. There’s just something about them that emits sincerity and fun, and more often than not they’re a place to find a bunch of stuff that would normally fly under my radar. The two singles here from 86’d Records confirm my line of thinking. First on the turntable is a split from Dead Uncles and The Credentials. Both play the rough melodic punk that bands like Off With Their Heads and Banner Pilot have been chopping away at for a while now. Dead Uncles have some decent jam-action on the guitar, which sets them apart from most of the pack, hopefully they continue to develop in that direction. If they caterwauled as good as the play their instruments they’d be onto something! The Credentials side thumps and blasts and vomits up the epitome of the genre’s lyrics – “I’m so lost, I’m so alone, I’m so drunk. Pick up the phone cause I’m dying here wishing I could disappear like you did.” The song rocks, especially when they barrel to the end. This is music that one should hear, but not listen to (unless you want to get bummed out). Shaving cream companies are reporting record losses by the quarter, and this 7″ will not help their situation.

Go White Bronco supply the other single, and it couldn’t be farther away on the spectrum. “Life as a Monument” starts with soft but clear acoustic plucking, rolls into mid-tempo strumming, and then the singer slides in with a simple but earnest tune. However, it’s the subtle, even haunting backdrop (courtesy of some light french horn and echo-y “oooohs”) that draw me in. The song explodes in the middle, almost to acoustic punk levels, and then sighs back to where it started. The flip offers a shorter cut that’s just as charming, with some harmonies to boot. Nothing is new but everything sounds great. Indie punk is booming right now, and I’m cool with that, but it’s still nice once in a while to find those tiny labels and small releases that fill in the cracks with quality material.
– Mark H.

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