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now playing: august 2019

now playing: august 2019

words: indigo baloch + lauren rearick

“TWTA” - Lobby Boy

In running a venue and seeing hundreds of shows, you quickly become desensitized to sound. It’s almost never that a band shakes me on the first try—especially live. But that’s completely how Lobby Boy won me over. A fresh band with few recordings, I had little to go on. So when they began to play it was like a thousand sparklers going off at once in my mind. It was like falling in love at first touch as their wave of sound crashed over me endlessly, dreamily. My body devoured every single note they played and sang. It’s the otherworldly sunset-toned beach vibes of Japanese Breakfast swirled with the growling grunge of Hole. You’re lying on a beach in California, you’re lying in a desert in Nevada, you’re lying on the rocks in Maine staring out at the midnight-blue tide arching high and breaking rough on the jagged shore. You’re everywhere at once, scenery changing every minute—visual, tangible, overwhelming and spellbinding. I’ve been waiting for this single since the moment I first heard them play, and I’m awaiting more as impatient as that swelling sea. // words: IB

Remembering The Rockets - Strange Ranger

The saying goes that you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, but in the case of Strange Ranger’s latest, their album cover gives you every indication of what to expect — a glorious musical journey tinged with nostalgia, orange skies, confessions, and change. It’s been nearly two years since the release of Daymoon, and in that time, Strange Ranger has further honed their identity, fleshing out their strings, moments of experimentation, and glorious sweep you off your feet melodies. From a heartbreaking opener (“Leona”) that recounts the results of a lost love to the quiet, mechanical shuffling and dreamy strings of “Nothing Else to Think About,” Remembering The Rockets is delightfully sweet, and full of unexpected surprises, including the can’t miss haze of “Ranch Style Home.”

On this recording, Strange Ranger transports you to the destination of its album cover, and leaves you eager to sit beneath the sky, contemplating everything and nothing that’s ever happened to you. // words: lr

Death of the Neon - String Machine

One of the recent great triumphs of the Pittsburgh DIY community released their incredible sophomore album, and from its outset, the record send chills through all our bones and muscles—the hair standing up on the back of our necks. String Machine’s Death of the Neon is the soundtrack of running through dense woods and corn fields, looking back over your shoulder, part of a pack. These songs are full of wildness, chaos to take us back to our most natural forms. Listening to String Machine is to have every molecule of your body relax and tense, relax and tense—the perfect blend of euphoria: ultimate serenity and exhilaration. It is to grow teeth, claws; to become feral and then enlightened. It is to let the earth into every vein, to find your howl. It is to let music be so much more than just a tapestry of chords. It is to be kin, and to know your blood upon hearing them calling out that complex symphony to the waxing moon. // words: IB

I Love My Mom - Indigo De Souza

Now this isn’t so much a review of any kind as a little whisper of love (considering the album has been out for over a year now). When Lauren (of TGE) sent me a link to Indigo De Souza, saying I’d love it, of course my first thought was a defiant, “Why because we share a name?” But the heartfelt tenderness of I Love My Mom pulled me in immediately and “Ghost” gave me a surge of strength in a time when a bittersweet farewell had turned venomous and sour. It’s become the new song I send to friends going through the throws of relationship woes. It’s a battle cry for anyone worrying that their softness is a weakness. This whole album gives me the same fantastical rush that TWIABP’s “January 10th, 2014” did. It makes me want to climb the tallest tree in the Allegheny Cemetery, with a whole bottle of dark red wine, and just scream everything I wish I could say to everyone and no one—to just dangle there, with my feet swinging off the edge of a branch. To just become another one of the phantoms there, wailing secrets in the night. // words: IB

song: "Honeysuckle" - Pom Pom Squad

song: "Honeysuckle" - Pom Pom Squad

toon tunes: Beast Wars

toon tunes: Beast Wars