New Music

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Mervis of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Scott:

Wild Flag, "Romance" - If you've been missing Sleater-Kinney, here's the remedy. Singer-guitarist Carrie Brownstein and drummer Janet Weiss are back with this indie-rock "supergroup" that also features guitarist Mary Timony (Helium) and keyboardist Rebecca Cole (The Minders). This song is on the poppier side, but you still get Brownstein in all her Wild glory on the band's Merge debut.

Donora, "The Story" - This is the lead-off track on the pop-rock trio's new album, its second on Rostrum Records. Despite the label being the home of Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller, the rappers make no appearance here. Rather, Donora gives us 10 tracks of adorable pop, going all the way back to '50s/'60s girl group and '80s New Wave for influences.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Andy Mulkerin of Pittsburgh's City Paper

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Andy (plus a  bonus song):

New Shouts, "Reins to Your Heart" - These local retro-ish indie rockers are about to unleash a 7-song EP; they dwell somewhere between throwback and contemporary hip stuff, which I like. This easy jam almost has a Philly soul sound to it.

Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, "Letter Divine" - Someone still loves you, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin. It's me! You just released a new double album filled with unreleased songs old and new, and some demos of songs we already knew. It's great, and this song is sweet and fun and makes me feel young. Thanks!

Mandrake Project, "Transitions" - This is the title track from the local band's new album; last year they took on John Schisler (formerly of New Invisible Joy) as a full-time vocalist, and it works really well; I think they've really taken it to the next level. Good, pretty, cinematic stuff.

Editor's note: Andy Mulkerin loves this boat --->

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Mervis of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Scott:

The War on Drugs, "Brothers" - My first thought was, 'Wow, this sounds so much like Kurt Vile.' Then I found out he used to be in this Philadelphia band. Adam Granduciel is a kindred spirit to Vile, sharing an interest in hazy, guitar-driven psych-rock with a Dylan and Petty influence. Adam sings a lot like Dylan on this track, but it's more winking tribute than rehash.

Neighbours, "Real Talk" - If you live within shouting distance of Pittsburgh band Neighbours, what you're hearing from the rehearsal space ranges from Who-era power pop to Motown to blue-eyed soul. This track has the quartet, which formed in 2009 and features fellow 9:13 Buzz contributor Andy Mulkerin on drums, spinning along like The Four Tops.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Justin Jacobs, contributing writer to Billboard Magazine

Beirut, "East Harlem" - All the indie kids in town are excited for this one. Beirut burst on the scene a few years ago with an Eastern European music-aping debut, but with new album "The Rip Tide," he's finally finding a good balance of new and old, and the sound is all Beirut. Bound to find a place on year-end Best Album lists.

Grooms, "Tiger Trees" - Joining Girls, Men, Women and all the other assorted 'people' bands, Grooms mixes scuzzy electronics with dark, danceable rock. I love the mood of "Tiger Trees": delicate but powerful, loud but whispered, crisp but murky. Definitely a band to watch.

In case you missed it here's what he played:

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Beirut Grooms Justin Jacobs The 9:13 Buzz

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Andy Mulkerin of Pittsburgh's City Paper

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Andy (plus a  bonus song):

Future Islands, "Before the Bridge" - Future Islands is a formerly Baltimore-based, currently Brooklyn-based synthpop band led by the enigmatic and growly Samuel T. Herring. Their last full-length grew to be a favorite of mine; this single was released earlier in the summer in advance of their next full-length, On the Water, which is due in October.

Nikki Lane, "Gone, Gone Gone" - This is the title track from Nikki Lane's EP from earlier this year. She's a young singer-songwriter with a very classic take on country music; it's a little bit affected, but then, so is Dolly Parton, eh? She's got a full-length in the works; I'm interested in seeing how it comes together.

The War on Drugs, "I Was There" -This Philly-based band (which originally included Kurt Vile) is getting a lot of buzz for their ethereal new album, Slave Ambient. Is it wrong that I think Adam Granduciel sounds a little like Bryan Adams? Like, if Bryan Adams were the least bit cool?

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Tady of The Beaver County Times.

In case you missed it here's what he played (with commentary by Scott):

Glen Campbell, "In My Arms" - One of the most remarkable albums of 2011 is "Ghost on the Canvas," the farewell effort by 75-year-old Glen Campbell. Campbell has been diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer's disease, which sets a dramatic backdrop to an album, due out Aug. 30, where the country-pop singer poignantly comes to terms with his situation. Far from wallowing in sorrow or regret, Campbell celebrates the gift of life and the love of family on the album, providing inspiration to us all. The all-star lineup of guest musicians includes Billy Corgan, Jakob Dylan, the Dandy Warhols, Teddy Thompson and Paul Westerberg, who wrote the title track, reminiscent of Campbell classics "Wichita Lineman," "By the Time I Get to Phoenix," "Galveston" and "Gentle on My Mind." I've chosen here one of the liveliest songs, "In My Arms," which gets twanged and surfed up by the guitar triumverate of Chris Issak, Brian Setzer and Dick Dale.

Yawn, "Acid" - These suburban Chicago psychedelic rockers are drawing lots of Animal Collective comparisons. They're trippy, in case the title of this debut single left you wondering. The full-length album arrives Aug. 30. Having opened shows for the likewise memorably named Yuck, not to mention Pittsburgh's Girl Talk, Yawn hits the road next month with Mates of State. The second night of their tour visits Mr. Small's Theatre.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Mervis of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Scott:

Tedeschi Trucks Band, "Ball and Chain" - It was only a matter of time until Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks just chucked everything else and started a real band together. After all, they've been married for 10 years. Not surprisingly, with her soulful singing and his dazzling slide work, it's a potent combination, especially with a full 11-piece band of seasoned players. They headline the Pittsburgh Blues Festival on Saturday.

Joss Stone, "Newborn" - Like Derek Trucks, British soul-rocker Joss Stone started as a teen and had to be channeling some sort of spirit to sing the way she did. Eight years and five albums into her recording career, she's still blossoming. This is from her new album, "LP1," but you can also look forward to her work with Super Heavy, the supergroup featuring Mick Jagger, Damian Marley, Dave Steward and AR Rahman.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Andy Mulkerin of Pittsburgh's City Paper

In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Andy (plus  bonus songs):

1, 2, 3, "Work" - This is the first track on the local band's debut release on Frenchkiss Records. Two of the guys who used to be in Takeover UK spent some time revamping their stuff and have re-emerged with a more eclectic, weirdo-pop vibe.

Rubblebucket, "Raining" - I saw this band at the Rex a few weeks back; it's an eight-piece with a lot of energy and some great tunes. Maybe slightly too jam-bandy for the hipsters and too avant-garde for the traditional jam-band types, which makes them all the more appealing to me.

Jolie Holland, "All Those Girls" - One of my favorite artists, Jolie Holland released her latest, Pint of Blood, last month. This is the lead track. She's continued her trajectory toward bigger orchestration and more straightforward beats -- almost playing rock music -- and on the record she revamps "Littlest Birds," which was on her debut demo and that Be Good Tanyas record. Perhaps the third time's the charm?

White Wives, "Indian Summer, Indian Summer" - Anthemic art-punk from members of Anti-Flag and Dandelion Snow. This local band released its debut, Happeners, last month; it's an original mix of old-style emo and singer-songwriter stuff that could be one of the definitive records of the year in relation to what the "kids" are listening to.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Tady of The Beaver County Times.

In case you missed it here's what he played (with commentary by Scott):

Digitalism, "2 Hearts" - This German dance-punk duo bolsters its club-thumping beats with indie-rock structure. This single from their sophomore album slips a straight-forward, poppy chorus into a whirlwind of icy keyboards, drum machines and pulsating bass beats. With well-received appearances at Lollapalooza, Coachella and South by Southwest, Digitalism has a buzz brewing. Another standout track on the day-old album, "Forrest Gump," was co-written by Julian Casablancas.

Julian Casablancas, "Rave On" - Did somebody mention the Strokes' frontman? Casablancas supplies the bold title track to the new Buddy Holly tribute album that features an all-star cast including Paul McCartney, Justin Townes Earle, Lou Reed, Graham Nash, My Morning Jacket, Florence + the Machine, Nick Lowe and the Black Keys. Casablancas resorts to a heaping dose of reverb mixed with layered vocals and spry, retro organ riffs to inject an edginess and quirky sophistication to Holly's genius-in-simplicity songwriting. For Casablancas, the risk works; something that can't be said for every track on this album. The best cut on "Rave On Buddy Holly" is ("You're So Square) Baby, I Don't Care" by Cee Lo Green, currently in rotation on WYEP.

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Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Justin Jacobs, contributing writer to Billboard Magazine

In case you missed it here's what he played (plus bonus songs):

Tune-Yards, "You Yes You" - The lady behind this noise is Merril Garbus, and she is awesome. Her voice? A scratchy, passionate yelp that's more rhythmic than melodic. Her music? Heavy grooving, stripped down and incredibly catchy. Wait till you start yelping along at work.

Rubik, "Laws of Gravity" - These dudes are Finnish, and that's pretty much all I know about them. Well, aside from the fact that they make songs like a shiny, outerspace Peter Bjorn and John.

Cloud Nothings, "Should Have" - This is the most infectious slice of scrappy guitar pop I've heard all year. Like Wavves but with oh so much less hype. The band is really young, so there's tons of promise here.

Death Cab for Cutie, "Codes and Keys" - When I started listening to this new record, I thought it sucked. But in just two days, I've grown from thinking it sounded like a bad Death Cab for Cutie cover band to sounding like a good Death Cab for Cutie record! Who knows, at this rate, in days this may grow to be my favorite. I don't think so, but it's possible.

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