Sisters Jennifer and Jessie Clavin and bassist Micayla Grace paint a frivolous picture of Los Angeles on their latest album Welcome the Worms, an ambitious rock record with a new found pop refinement. Although a typical theme of ruined romance floats through the album, the real power is in Jen figuring out herself through lyrics so straight, identifiable and honest. "Sometimes [writing this album] made me hate myself and sometimes it made me love myself," she admits. "But being aware of how I felt is what I wanted." It became clear that Jen had to embrace the good with the horrible and learn to overcome it all through music. "We don't want perfection because it's boring," she continues. "We want to make music that's as real as life." They'll be at the Doug Fir Saturday April 30th, and Wednesday Night Melody will be free in this week's Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
The Wild Wild ::: When We Were Young
One might call Benjamin Dunn, aka The Wild Wild, a bit of a vagabond, growing up in the Midwest, hitchhiking his way to the beaches of California at the age of 18, studying theology in New Orleans, and isolating himself in the rural forest of Pennsylvania. Along the way he's shared the stage with Bear Hands and Fitz and the Tantrums and held on to a sense of wonder in spite of all he's seen. When We Were Young will be free in the 94/7 Nation e-mail courtesy of Crunch Fitness!
Lewis Del Mar ::: Loud(y)
Lewis Del Mar, a duo from Rockaway Beach in Queens, New York, is two lifelong friends, Danny Miller and Max Harwood, who have crafted a sound as challenging as it is comforting. Their sonic hybrid blends barefaced bedroom recordings of acoustic guitars and soulful vocals over a rich soundscape of complex live and sampled percussion. Humility and passion are brimming on the band’s debut EP. There is a uniquely human element to their sound and message – relatable while it continues to keep you guessing, peering curiously around the corner to get a glimpse of what’s next. Recommended for fans of Brick + Mortar, and humans with ears. Loud(y) will be free in your 94/7 Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
The Young Wild ::: Not a One
Before they were a band, The Young Wild were college students in San Diego - playing music always, just not necessarily with each other - until frontman Bryan B William and bassist/chemistry major Gareth Moore started a classic rock, cover band. Meanwhile Brandon Zedaker was growing exhausted with his study of jazz drums and knew his future bandmates as the guys who played really, really loud in the band room after jazz ensemble. After graduation William assumed the role of frontman, and the band refined their sound, edging away from classic rock covers and adopting the cool chime of synth-pop and 80’s rock, cut with William’s allegiance to soul, Motown, and precision grooves. One of those grooves is Not a One and it's free to Nation members in your e-mail courtesy of Crunch Fitness!
Jake Bugg ::: Gimme The Love
When Jake Bugg isn't writing and performing, he's making us feel a little like underachievers, releasing three albums, selling out UK arenas and getting shortlisted for the Mercury Music Prize all by the age of 22. His latest album On My One features a dramatic groovy tune called Gimme The Love, a heady maelstrom of funky drums and wah-wah guitar as Bugg airs his grievances. "It's about the music business, yeah! I've always been quite bitter and cynical about contemporary pop music, so it's partly about that frustration, wishing it was better. And it's also a bit of an in-joke as my label told me to go away and write a single. So I went home to Nottingham and thought, 'Right, I'll write one about you lot!'" Gimme The Love is free in this week's Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
M83 ::: Do It, Try It
Maybe you're one of the many who count themselves lucky to have witnessed M83 play December to Remember at the Rose Garden back in 2012. Maybe you only just got the hook to Midnight City out of your head (oops, it's back). But if you haven't heard of M83 at all, well, that's a real shame. M83, aka Anthony Gonzalez, sold out two nights at the Roseland Theater in late April. His highly anticipated album JUNK comes out April 8th and shows him experimenting with sounds and styles he's never attempted, like synthesized vocal and bubblegum pop hooks on Do It, Try It. It's your free download this week courtesy of Crunch Fitness, so check your 94/7 Nation e-mail Wednesday for your free download!
Kaleo ::: Way Down We Go
Best friends since attending elementary school in the small town of Mosfellsbaer outside of Reykjavik, Iceland, JJ Juliusson, David Antonsson Crivello, and Danny Jones began playing together at the age of 17 and added Rubin Pollock in 2012. They named the band Kaleo, which means “the sound” in Hawaiian. When their cover of the traditional Icelandic ballad “Vor í vaglaskógi” during a live radio show was videotaped and went viral on YouTube, they recorded a studio version of the song which went straight to Number One in virtually every radio station in the country. Kaleo later toured with Vance Joy, gaining worldwide fans who are drawn to their ability to play different genres with equal skill, the vocals and mood reminiscent of everything from Bon Iver and Iron & Wine to Coldplay and David Gray. Kaleo will be at Revolution Hall May 30th, and Way Down We Go will be free for 94/7 Nation members thanks to Crunch Fitness!
Tame Impala ::: The Less I know the Better
When it comes to Tame Impala, The Less I Know the Better is simply not the case. The more you know about Tame Impala the better off you are. They wowed us at December to Remember 2013 with psychedelic rock that echoed experimental jams of the 70s, singer Kevin Parker’s buoyant timbre drawing comparisons to John Lennon. Their latest album Currents saw Parker embracing every whim he felt deserved exploration, and we’re luckier for it. The Less I Know The Better will be free in Wednesday’s Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
Declan McKenna ::: Brazil
Declan McKenna has been booking his own gigs since he was 14 years old, showing such promise to win the Glastonbury Emerging Competition and signing a major label deal off the strength of one song on his Bandcamp page. That song is Brazil, written as McKenna processed his disgust with the greed and manipulation of FIFA staff involved in the 2014 World Cup. Brazil will be free for Nation members in Wednesday's Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
Dandy Warhols ::: You Are Killing Me
It's hard to believe it's been more than 20 years since The Dandy Warhols introduced their brand of riotous Britpop to Portland, and the world. They even made a fan out of David Bowie, who they supported on his 2003 A Reality Tour. Their latest output You Are Killing Me keeps the fuzzed guitars and thumping drums that we love them for, but sounds more self-assured, more relaxed. The Dandy Warhols are dandier than ever. Check your Nation e-mail this week for a free download of You Are Killing Me!
St. Lucia ::: Dancing on Glass
South Africa native Jean-Philip Grobler grew up loving mainstream pop songs, but after attending music school in Liverpool and working as a jingle writer in New York, he started blending pop, R&B, and alternative rock influences into an instantly captivating, sweet, and refreshing concoction. Their new song Dancing On Glass is about having the faith to chase what makes you happy, even if logic and practicality tell you it's bound to fall apart. Dancing on Glass is free for Nation members in Wednesday's 94/7 Nation email!
Conway ::: Big Talk
Conway actually shot and edited the music video for Big Talk herself on her own MacBook, so it surprised her more than anyone that it got her noticed by blogs and labels. But after opening for the likes of Robert DeLong, Broods and St. Lucia, she realized the big label life wasn't for her and amiably got out of her contract to continue as an independent artist. "I need to be free to release music, play and tour," she says. "There is nothing worse than feeling silently stuck. I have never been good at sitting still. Gotta keep it moving. It's the only way to grow." Big Talk will be free for Nation members in the weekly Nation e-mail courtesy of Crunch Fitness!
BANNERS ::: Shine a Light
Michael Joseph Nelson comes from Liverpool, UK. Fascinated by dreams, life, death, hope and despair, he grew up singing in the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral Choir and the Liverpool Kop. After singing in cathedrals and concert halls across Europe, Mike connected with Canadian producer Stephen Kozmeniuk and together they crafted his sound that would become BANNERS. Influenced by artists ranging from The Beatles to Arcade fire, Mike’s music is at once haunting and hopeful, sure to resonate with audiences across space and age. Shine a Light will be a free download in the Nation e-mail courtesy of Crunch Fitness!
The Rebel Light ::: Strangers
Los Angeles trio The Rebel Light have only been together since 2013 but already have a sound that feels both effortlessly fresh and wonderfully familiar. They're getting compared to The Beach Boys, The Doors, The Shins and Temples by the likes of NME and Clash Magazine UK and draw heavily on the sun-drenched sound of 60’s California pop. Strangers is the perfect introduction to The Rebel Light’s hazy, indie pop sound, with huge sunny choruses, warm nostalgic synths and shimmering guitar lines. It's free in your Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
The Strumbellas ::: Spirits
The Strumbellas very well might have you singing along to their songs the very first time you listen. The Canadian six-piece specializes in comforting pop-rock, straddling the line between melancholy wistfulness and blow-the-barn-doors-off stomping. See if Spirits gets you in the spirit - it's free in your Nation e-mail thanks to Crunch Fitness!
Chef'Special ::: In Your Arms
Since forming in their hometown of the Netherlands in 2008, the band have released two albums, toured extensively and built a rabid fan across Europe based who instantly gravitated to the band's unique blend of hip-hop, rock and reggae. Although the band started out being influenced by acts like The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Rage Against The Machine, they found that the more time they spent on the road, the more their sound developed. They offer plenty of danceable songs, but In Your Arms is more of a bittersweet, finger-picked ballad, and it's free in this week's Nation e-mail!
The Jungle Giants ::: Kooky Eyes
For their second album Speakerzoid, The Jungle Giants decided to push the envelope further with different ways of writing and new pre-production techniques. Setting up a temporary studio in the mountains near New South Wales/Queensland border, the band used every inch of the house to record, even letting a microwave spin on the album. The result is an inventive, accomplished and ebullient record. If you like Cake, The Kooks, or Mumm-ra, we think you'll love Kooky Eyes - it's free in the Nation e-mail courtesy of Crunch Fitness!
Lucius ::: Born Again Teen
Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig met in 2005 at Berklee College of Music and now lead Lucius with multi-instrumentalists Andrew Burri, Peter Lalish and Dan Molad. Since forming, Lucius has toured extensively, playing major festivals like including Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits, Lollapalooza, and Governors Ball, and supporting the likes of The Decemberists, My Morning Jacket, Tegan and Sara, and Jack White. Rolling Stone has praised their "ability to shift seamlessly between chill folk outfit and wildly energetic indie rock blast." Born Again Teen sits firmly in the "wildly energetic indie rock blast" zone and will appear on their next record Good Grief, out March 11th. Of course, the song will be free for Nation members! Check your e-mails.
Miike Snow ::: Ganghis Khan
Miike Snow return! Formed by Swedish musicians Christian Karlsson and Pontus Winnberg and American songwriter Andrew Wyatt, Miike Snow unveiled their self-titled debut album in 2009, earning international acclaim for the distinctive fusion of plaintive pop songcraft and atmospheric electronics found on tracks like the breakthrough single, Animal. The members of Miike Snow have spent much of time since traveling fresh creative avenues, including solo albums, the formation of new bands, and a wide variety of production and songwriting collaborations. The trio first began work on their third album in late 2013 all over the world, often teaming with other songwriters and producers in search of new sonic and emotional approaches. The result is Miike Snow’s most innovative and creatively unified work thus far, typified by the propulsive pop soul of tracks. Ganghis Khan is free in this week's Nation e-mail!
Kurt Vile ::: Pretty Pimpin
"Recorded and mixed in a number of locations, including Los Angeles and Joshua Tree, b'lieve i'm goin down... is a handshake across the country, east to west coast, thru the dustbowl history ("valley of ashes") of woody honest straight forward talk guthrie, and a cali canyon dead still nite floating in a nearly waterless landscape. The record is all air, weightless, bodyless, but grounded in convincing authenticity, in the best version of singer songwriter upcycling." So says Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon of Kurt Vile's most recent album, which features Pretty Pimpin, a vexing hypnotic guitar picking song that will worm its way into your head. Even better, it's a free download in your Nation email!
Jarryd James ::: Do You Remember
Brisbane based singer/songwriter Jarryd James has emerged as one of Australia’s most promising new talents, with his first single Do You Remember debuting at number one on the Hype Machine and Australian iTunes charts. He considers himself blessed to work alongside acclaimed producers like Joel Little (Lorde, Broods) and Malay (Frank Ocean), on his debut album Thirty One, a sleek collection of modern R & B songs brooding with generous warm-hearted energy. "I feel like I've won the lottery," Jarryd enthuses, adding that the thrill of touring isn't lost on him. "I like the idea of reconnecting people with simple songs, bringing them back to why they liked music in the first place," Jarryd explains. Check your Nation e-mail for a free download of Do You Remember!
Marian Hill ::: One Time
Electronic pop duo Marian Hill - Jeremy Lloyd (production/songwriting) and Samantha Gongol (vocals/songwriting) - named their band after the lead roles they each played in a middle school production of The Music Man years ago. Years later, following a stint studying music composition at college for Lloyd while Gongol was cutting her teeth in New York as a songwriter, the pair reunited in the former’s bedroom studio. Citing influences ranging from Cole Porter to Kanye, from Ella Fitzgerald to Drake, while many artists define themselves by the mixture of inspirations they’ve concocted, Marian Hill go one step further: fusing disparate sources into a compound sound that’s hard to imagine ever having been apart. One Time is this week's Slice of New Music Heaven, and you'll get it free in the Nation e-mail!
Baio ::: Sister of Pearl
You may already know Chris Baio as the bassist of Vampire Weekend. Or perhaps you know him as the second cousin of Scott Baio, or the surprising distant relative of Steve Buscemi. Yes, truly. In his downtime between Vampire Weekend tours, Baio recognized in himself an increasing restlessness, a desire to explore his own individual voice away from the band. He describes his new album The Names as “a realization of my influences and things that I love” — a world quite distinct to that of Vampire Weekend. Grab a download of Sister of Pearl in your Nation e-mail!
The 1975 ::: Love Me
Hailing from Manchester, The 1975 have been playing together since 2002. In fact, this is their second appearance in New Music Heaven (first was Sex in January 2013). Singer Matt Healy told Darragh Faughey of GoldenPlec.com that "John Hughes movies are possibly my biggest influence" and it's plainly apparent in their latest effort, Love Me. It grooves and shakes with audacious fun akin to Fame by David Bowie. Check your Nation e-mail for a FREE download of Love Me coming your way in this week's Nation e-mail!
Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats ::: S.O.B.
“If you believe in soul... if you believe in rock n roll... if you believe in performing your guts
out... Enjoy the band on our show tonight.” So said Jimmy Fallon when Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats recently performed on his show, practically exploding with deep, primal and ecstatic soulfulness. It’s fitting that the self-titled album will bear the iconic logo of Stax Records, because at certain moments Rateliff seems to be channeling soul greats like Otis Redding and Sam & Dave. But as this gifted multi-instrumentalist honors the legacy of the legendary Memphis label, he’s also setting out into audacious new territory. Join the 94/7 Nation to get your free download of S.O.B. in the weekly Nation e-mail!
Nothing But Thieves ::: Trip Switch
Nothing But Thieves, an English five piece, may be virtually unknown in the states, but in their homeland they've been cultivating a fanbase since 2012, opening for the likes of Arcade Fire and AWOLNATION. Switch on the free download of their electronic rocker, Trip Switch, by opening up your Nation e-mail this week.
Frank Turner is aware of the passage of time, of the influence of days that drag and months that gallop can exert on what he would probably never dream of calling his body of work. After all, it has been a number of years now since the hardcore troubadour transformed himself from The Boy Who Surely Could Not, to The Man That Did. "This is my sixth album... I wanted to try and make a record that had that young, exciting feel, full of piss and vinegar." As always, the trick lay in translating the album as it existed in Frank’s head to the point where others in his organization were happy to lend their shoulder to its cause. The key to this exercise lay with producer Butch Walker. It was the American's (Walker's) organic quality that caught the Englishman’s ear, his capacity to transport songs forged amid the thunder of the practice room floor to the exacting standards of the studio without compromise or equivocation. The album that was produced, Positive Songs For Negative People, is the sound of a man putting his show back on the road. Next Storm, a track off of Positive Songs For Negative People, is this week's New Music Heaven. Brought to you by Crunch Fitness.
RAC is taking things one song at a time. Recently finished his last album cycle with a pair of triumphant appearances at Coachella, the multi instumentalist will continue to give fans new music. Andre Allen Anjos will kick off the single series with (New Music Heaven track) Back of the Car, his euphoric guitar driven collaboration with long time friend, Nate Henricks. Anjos is not only looking forward to releasing new music more frequently, but he is also usuing the series as an opportunity to work with vocalists he has never worked with before, and to work in generes he has yet to explore. Take a listen to Back of the Car by RAC. NATION members, give it an ol' download if you please. New Music Heaven is brought to you by CRUNCH Fitness.
People say Toronto-based Fast Romantics make intelligent “pop” music. But in the next breath, it’s indie-rock... or is it post-punk, post-indie, or post-brit-anthemic-synth-rock? Frontman and songwriter Matthew Angus -- while taking his cues from “pop” songwriters of old -- insists that all of this genre bending “just ain’t worth talking about.” He says Fast Romantics have focused on carving their own musical path, sticking to their guns through some pretty lonely and challenging times. Sticking to their guns lead them to their latest single, JULIA, which is this week's New Music Heaven. With a catchy chorus, great guitar licks, and tasteful tambourine, this track aims to please! Download it for free if you'd like, and if you're a NATION member thanks to Crunch Fitness.
Class Actress always belonged in the City of Angels. The lights, the hills, the glitz, the glamour, the opulence, the addiction, the lust, and the love comprising the city exert a magnetic pull like no other. In 2013, this singer, songwriter, and femme fatale took her advance from Casablanca Records and moved into a bungalow at a lavish hotel in Beverly Hills, to retreat into music as an escape and a way forward. Reeling from her father's cancer diagnosis, she needed a change of pace. Class Actress figured if she was going to write a record about "the life" she really needed to live it. She also got a hell of a lot more than she bargained for. She went out nightly and breathed in the city as she begun penning something of a musical memoir. It wasn't until she relocated to a Hollywood Hills bungalow and fell into a love addition with an old paramour who lived next door that she wrote her first EP for Casablanca Records, called Movies. Off of Movies, New Music Heaven track More Than You lives - a song that details the unshakable desire for a lover like a drug she can't give up. The seductive synths, piano, and airy beats of More Than You has been brought to you by Crunch Fitness. Download the track for free if you're a NATION member.
New Music Heaven veterans,The Vaccines, are an English indie rock band, formed in West London in 2010 by Justin Hayward-Young (lead vocals, guitar), Freddie Cowan (lead guitar, vocals), Árni Árnason (bass, vocals) and Pete Robertson (drums, vocals). English Graffiti is The Vaccines first LP in three years. Recorded at Tarbox Road Studio in upstate New York, the 11-song collection is the UK foursome’s most accomplished work to date, and was produced David Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Tame Impala, MGMT) and Cole MGN (Ariel Pink, Beck). Off of English Graffiti is this week's slice of New Music Heaven, Give Me A Sign - a pop-py tune with a fuzzy, catchy, riff. Give 'er an old download if you're a NATION member. New Music Heaven is powered by Crunch Fitness.
MUTEMATH, made up of Paul Meany, Darren King, Roy Mitchell-Cárdenas, and Todd Gummerman, decided that this time around for their newest album, Vitals, would be produced by the band itself, no management, no label - just the four of them. Monument is this week's New Music Heaven, and one song on Vitals. Everyone in the band agrees that Vitals became an album the day they wrote Monument. It’s a song that rejoices in the present, refusing to wait for something to be gone in order to celebrate it. It is the center that holds this ambitious collection together. “A monument usually signifies a memorialization for what is no more,” Meany explains. “This song is about taking control of the moments we still have, while we still have them together. The threat of an ending is nothing to be afraid of, but something that can be turned into beauty and serve as a vibrant means to keep moving forward.” If you're a NATION member, feel free to download Monument for free!
EL VY is the musical collaboration between Matt Berninger, vocalist and lyricist of The National, and Brent Knopf, the Portland musician and producer best known for his work in Menomena and his more recent band, Ramona Falls. Their debut album Return to the Moon sounds exactly like you'd hope a collaboration between these artists would: Berninger's darkly funny, lyrical storytelling and his immediately identifiable sense of melody, offset by Knopf's playful, architectural arrangements and inventive production. For years, Berninger kept a secret folder on his laptop called "The Moon." The files in that folder were bits of music from Knopf. Berninger loaded the files onto his laptop and recorded himself singing melodies whenever and whereever he could (on one song, you can hear a hotel employee enter the room). As lyrics bubbled up from his subconscious, subliminal connections between his past and present emerged, and he began to play with the idea that the songs' stories would overlap. Check out Return to the Moon, this week's New Music Heaven by EL VY. Download it for free, NATION members!
Although New Order isn't a new band, they provide us our New Music Heaven this week. New Order is an English rock band that was originally formed in the 80s - they combine post-punk and electric dance style music. They are comprised of Gillian Gilbert, Tom Chapman, Stephen Morris, Bernard Sumner, and Phil Cunningham. Check out their song Restless - a tune that takes influences from electonic and synthpop, all the while still taking notes from New Order's previous albums. Download it for free if you're a NATION member!
For the last three years, Django Django have been busy doing great things in the East London bedroom slept in by their drummer, producer and de facto leader David Maclean. The quartet, who met at art school in Edinburgh, first came to peoples’ attentions after a gradual migration to London a couple of years back. 2009’s double A-side single Storm/Love’s Dart laid the blueprint for a confident, adventurous and psychedelically-bruised strain of art-rock that melds intangible electronic flourishes to the visceral rub of live instrumentation.The impression one gets of Django Django is of a band laying down the first, meticulously measured borders on some vast map of a world that only they are privy to. This week's New Music Heaven is Shake & Tremble, the new single off the band’s sophomore album, Born, Under Saturn. Described by NPR’s All Songs Considered, Shake & Tremble “marries a Devoesque bass line with unflappable surf rock guitar.” It was written on a volcanic island where the band was collaborating with visual artist Haroon Mirza, and in turn, references human sacrifice and volcanic activity. As it always goes, download Shake & Tremble for FREE if you're a NATION member.
Veering from house and hip hop, to nu-disco and folk-electronica and more by cleverly fusing beats atop the catchiest of songwriting shreds, Coleman Hell has a knack for pushing the boundaries of existing pop frameworks and delivering memorable choruses to boot. Anchored by his inspiring and unorthodox approach, the Thunder Bay (Canada) native has forged a prolific reputation as an adventurous outlier with a diverse palate. Coleman Hell and his friend/collaborator La+ch have crafted a genre-defying single 2 Heads - this week's New Music Heaven track. The mesmerizing track slips the bonds of your standard ‘relationship’ song immediately upon first listen. 2 Heads has turned heads, so to speak, with Hell’s flair for bold verses and left-of-center hooks adorning darker relationship threads. If you like it, download it (if you're a NATION member!)
The Moth & The Flame
Founded in the high desert of Provo, Utah and now based in Los Angeles, The Moth & The Flame has quickly earned devoted fans and critical acclaim for their brand of lush, atmospheric rock. NPR's All Songs Considered hailed the band's creative intertwining of compelling music and strong visuals. An engaging live outfit, The Moth & The Flame has also spent considerable time on the road, most recently alongside longtime friends Imagine Dragons and The Naked And Famous. Additionally, they've headlined countless shows and made standout festival appearances at such international gatherings as Austin's South By Southwest (SXSW) and the UK's The Great Escape. The Moth & The Flame are: Brandon Robbins (vocals, guitar), Mark Garbett (keyboards, vocals), Andrew Tolman (drums), Michael Goldman (bass, guitar, vocals). Their song, Young & Unafraid is this week’s New Music Heaven!
DREAMERS is a Brooklyn band who’s unique brand of ‘70s punk meets power-pop. Comprised of Nick Wold (vocals, guitar), Chris Bagamery (drums, backup vocals), and Nelson (bass, backup vocals), DREAMERS were first introduced to the universe in November 2014 with their self-released, self-titled debut EP. Their colorfully passionate music tugged at heartstrings and had tastemakers dancing around the room all in one fell swoop, with praise pouring in from the likes of Billboard, Spin, Alternative Press, Vice NOISEY, Guitar World, and more. The band has already shared the stage with such notable artists as The Vaccines, The 1975, Bear Hands, Walk The Moon, Stone Temple Pilots, Oberhofer, and Broncho. Their new single Wolves (You Got Me) is this week’s New Music Heaven. Enjoy!
The Struts, who hail from Derby in the UK, are gaining a fast following in the United States. Over the past few weeks their new single Could Have Been Me has rapidly emerged as one of the hottest new modern rock tracks in the country, getting key adds at the nation's most influential rock stations, and appearing on numerous spotify playlists, and was featured in Billboard Magazine's Tomorrow's Hits column. The Struts, who flaunt their style and yes strut on stage and off, were honored to be the only opener last year in Paris for The Rolling Stones and regularly tour throughout the UK. Frontman Luke Spiller is not afraid to have attitude and be different from a generation of cautious rock bands who in his opinion have second-guessed rock & roll into the margins. Spiller is evangelical about music, and it's partly because of his background. He's the son of born-again Christians and went to church in Bristol every Sunday until he was 16. "When I could stop going, it gave me an extra day to myself," he explains. And that day was filled with rock. Now everyday is filled with rock, as they kick off an American tour this summer. Check out Could Have Been Me, this week's New Music Heaven.
Best Coast is singer/songwriter/guitarist Bethany Cosentino and guitarist Bobb Bruo. New Best Coast album, California Nights, is bright, sparkly, sophisticated, and more psychedelic than their past albums. It embodies the rich lightness and stinging darkness of a California state of mind. The love stories Bethany spins on California Nights all detail the highs and the lows of relationships, similar to the juxtaposition of a the band’s native Los Angeles - a place tinted by candy-colored palm trees and pale blue skies while existing within the loneliness and desperation of waterless place. More than that, there is a literal meaning to the record’s title - Cosentino is a well-documented insomniac whose creativity spirals out in the early hours of the morning, allowing her to write the music, undisturbed. One of the songs on the album is this week’s New Music Heaven. It’s called Feeling Ok and, of course, you can download it for free if you're a NATION member!
New Music Heaven track Outta My Mind is probably one of our NEWEST tunes we've selected to share with our NATION. The song is by The Arcs, Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys' most recent excursion he shares with Richard Swift, Leon Michels, Homer Steinweiss, and Nick Movshon. Auerbach spreads himself thin - he's got a solo record, prolific production work, the side project Blakroc, and as we all know, eight albums with The Black Keys. "This project was about making music with some of my longest relationships in music." The project would be the debut album Yours, Dreamily, where Outta My Mind lives as the 2nd track. The album was recorded in roughly two weeks through spontaneous, informal sessions across the country at the Sound Factory in Los Angeles, the Diamond Mine in Queens, Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound in Nashville, and in a lounge room at Electric Lady in Manhattan. And Tchad Blake mixed the album on his horse farm in Wales. This NEW New Music Heaven can be downloaded for free if you're a NATION member!
Liverpool-based band Circa Waves – comprising Kieran Shudall (guitar / vocals), Joe Falconer (guitar), Sam Rourke (bass) & Colin Jones (drums) – grew up on the guitar bands of the early 00s and are hell-bent on recapturing some of the excitement and success of their former boyhood heroes. Summer 2015 finds Circa Waves touring the U.S., playing a mixture of headline dates and festivals like Lollapalooza. “[Circa Waves are] dedicated to the snappy, tautly constructed, guitar-driven rock song…with the relentless rhythm-guitar drive of the Strokes,” noted The New York Times. Diffuser praised their “big, booming variations on Britpop” and NME praised the band for making “some of the liveliest, most epic-sounding guitar tunes around.” Check out this week's New Music Heaven T-Shirt Weather, a song that has racked up more than three million streams on Spotify . We recommend downloading it for keeps if you're a NATION member!
Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear
At home, Madisen and Ruth Ward are mother and son. Onstage, they're the leading members of Madisen Ward & the Mama Bear, a soulful folk band whose sound is anchored by twin guitars, two generations, two different tastes, and two big, booming voices.The music started in Kansas City, where Madisen grew up watching his mom perform cover songs at local coffeeshops. Before long, he was writing his own tunes, mixing the old-world influence of his family's folk records with the unchained, energetic stomp of modern-day rock & roll. The two began playing entire shows together, ditching the cover songs in favor of Madisen's original material. Both sang, both played guitar, and both watched as their band's audience slowly grew. Eventually, Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear were opening shows for B.B. King. Madisen Ward & Mama Bear's songs spin tall tales (and a few biographical truths) about life in the Midwest with little more than two acoustic guitars and Madisen's super-sized baritone vocals. This week's New Music Heaven is Silent Movies by Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear! If you like it, and you're a NATION member - grab the song for free from us!
Electro-pop group PHASES, consists of Los Angeles-based quartet of friends Z Berg (The Like), Jason Boesel (Rilo Kiley/Bright Eyes), Alex Greenwald (Phantom Planet), and songwriter Michael Runion. The team united in 2009 and began doing music together. After many hurdles and obstacles, the team became the band PHASES. The band's name came to them when their manager, upon hearing some of the new music they had produced, excidedly relayed how she was instantly whisked away to her teenage years spent dancing in an '80s club in The Valley called Phases. PHASES' recent music sparkles with heat and light, infused with elements from each member’s bag of tricks, propelled and popping with life. It’s a seamless blend of sunshine and sugar, but it also hums with darker electricity from the boogie nightclubs of bygone eras, all the while sounding completely and urgently modern. Check out this week's New Music Heaven track, I’m In Love With My Life. It's FREE to download it if you're a NATION member, just FYI.
Four-piece band, Houndmouth, is from Louisville, Kentucky. Houndmouth are Matt Myers (guitar/vocals), Katie Toupin (keyboard/vocals), Zak Appleby (bass/vocals) and Shane Cody (drums/vocals). On why they chose the name Houndmouth, Myers states: “We record at nighttime to get rid of all the noise during the day like sirens and car honks, but there are always these two dogs that the neighbors have that bark all night. We recorded a bunch of tracks and finally get one that we liked, but when we played it back Shane said, “It’s not gonna work, there’s too much houndmouth on this!” He was clearly drunk because no one would say “houndmouth." Ever. Still, the rest of the group (sobriety aside) decided that they liked the unique charm of the name.” First single Sedona is equal parts gutsiness and delicacy and acts as almost a mission statement for the album, showcasing the witty, emotionally resonant songcraft - with Matt Myers's searing guitarwork and the band's masterful four-part harmonies bolstering a buoyant chorus. Download Sedona if you're a NATION member and a fan of the tune. It's this week's New Music Heaven!
Unknown Mortal Orchestra
It's psychedelia that doesn't ignore the last 40 years of music, pushing boundaries and making a quiet argument against the idea that every frontier has been explored. Portland band, Uknown Mortal Orchestra's new album, Multi-Love, offers a flowing, cohesive view of front man Ruban Nielson's expanded vision. Jagged, sculpted beats and cosmic synthesizers add dimension to a genre supposedly known for its expansive creativity. New Music Heaven track, Can't Keep Checking My Phone, opens with a serenade of intertwined trumpet and guitar, struts and sings, neon synths and bouncing bass telling of an airy, humid feeling pressing against your temples. Check it out, and download it for free if you're a NATION member!
Frank and fearless, tender and rowdy young singer/songwriter/guitarist/banjoist Elle King was raised in rural Ohio. She pinpoints the day her life changed to her 9th birthday, when her stepdad bought her first album by hard-rocker girls the Donnas. "I wanted to play rock and roll and be a girl and do it. I started listening to all the rad chicks." She moved to New York City at age 10, got kicked out of school, landed in California, returned to New York, and then to Philadelphia for art school. As a gypsy-hearted young gun, she picked up playing the guitar at age 13. Her recent album that possesses a blend of rock, blues, country, and pop styles, was recorded with producers Jeff Bhasker (FUN., Kanye West), Eg White (Adele, Sam Smith), and Jacknife Lee (R.E.M., U2); plus artists Mark Ronson and Patrick Carney of the Black Keys. Off of the album is Ex's & Oh's, this week's New Music Heaven. Download it for free if you're a NATION member!
Dawes is Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith, Wylie Gelber, and Tay Strathairn. Transcending from their well-documented Southern Caifornia influences to their own established sound and themes, Dawes released their fourth album, All Your Favorite Bands. A track off the album called Things Happen is this week's New Music Heaven. It's a cheeky, glass-half-full anthem with mellow vocals that leaves you smiling - especially so if you watch the music video. The video expresses Dawes’ joie de vivre, a bittersweet tale of a Beatles busker (played by their actor friend Nate Michaux) who works Hollywood Blvd., where he meets fellow street performers Charlie Chaplin (Taylor), Elvis Presley (Gelber) and Marilyn Monroe (Strathairn in drag). “In a literal way, I’m singing to a friend, but I’m also giving myself a pep talk,” said Taylor. “Things might be bad, but the only thing you can do is shift your perspective to deal with it. Hoping it will go away by itself is a little unreasonable.” Enjoy Things Happen! If you're a NATION member, go ahead and download it for free!
BØRNS is Garret Borns, a rural Michigan native who now resides in a treehouse in the Los Angeles canyons. "You can feel the sunshine and hear the echoes of the canyon... It brought out my inner child, but in a very enlightening and meditative way." In the secluded, canopied space of his treehouse, the musician wrote and often recorded the songs on his EP, Candy - which filters the singer's naturally moody, sensual sound. The shimmering feel of the EP does conjure images of exactly the kind of bohemian Never Never Land that inspired it. The seductive Electric Love bears a strong T Rex influence, and is this week's New Music Heaven! Download it for free if you're a NATION member!
New Music Heaven artist, James Bay, is a 23-year-old singer-songwriter from Hitchin, an hour or so outside of London. With an old head on young shoulders, he channels artists such as Miles Davis, Bruce Springsteen and James Blake, with his music intensely personal, combining melodic truth and raw emotion. Bay's obsession with guitars began around age 11. He first began to attempt learning guitar with an instructional CD, but those attemps were quickly spurned in favor of learning how to play by ear, with Bay putting on Van Morrisson and Derek and the Dominos' Layla and strummping along. At the age of 18, James Bay moved out of Hitchin to study guitar in the seaside city of Brighton. It was there his solo venture really kicked off. It was at his college showcase night that he was spotted by his management company, who'd scouted him online the previous evening. From Brighton, the next step was London. Building up a solid live reputation in the capital, prestigious support slots started flooding in, including a life changing opening set for The Rolling Stones at their gigantic Hyde Park show in the summer of 2013. “I almost fell off my stool when I was told,” says Bay, who was on his first trip to Los Angeles when he heard the news. Present day, he is our New Music Heaven artist for his song Hold Back the River, and will be touring with Hoizer in the US this fall. Take a listen to him, and download Hold Back the River for free if you're a fan and a NATION member. Thanks to Dick Hannah Subaru.