Personal Picks

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):

The Ready Stance, "Rancho Christo" - I'm digging the urgency and hooks on this
rookie effort from a Kentucky/suburban-Cincinnati band that's mining the rockier
side of Americana.

The Riverboat Gamblers, "Bite My Tongue" - They gave the best performance at the 2010
Warped Tour, and these Texas rockers, with punk energy, released last week one of
the most exhilarating albums so far this year. The single is "Comedian" but here's a
deeper cut to give you a fuller scope of the band's confident and compelling
songwriting.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Scott Tady The 9:13 Buzz The Ready Stance The Riverboat Gamblers

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 (talking to us from Isreal via Skype!), contributing writer to Billboard & Relix Magazine.

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

of Montreal, "Dour Percentage" - Kevin Barnes and company put on a wild show in Tel Aviv a few weeks back — complete with dancing pigs, folks in white sheets, lots of colors and dancing and whatnot. of Montreal's new album, Paralytic Stalks, is a darker take on the band's psychedelic weirdo-pop, and this song captures the band at its best. I liken the band on record to David Bowie: really funky and wild, but in a buttoned-up way. But live, the buttons come off, and so do most of the clothing.

Balkan Beat Box, "Part of the Glory" - One of Israel's best exports, these guys make Middle Eastern pop music (not what you're thinking) that could play in any Western club, with saxophone lines cutting through spicy, dusty chants and tons of start-stop beats that make you wanna move. I think pop radio would be a better place if bands like this got some play.

Extra bonus!

Liars, "No. 1 Against the Rush" - Liars are back! Everyone's favorite endlessly-creepy freak-out rockers are going to drop their sixth album, WIXIW, in a few weeks, and this electronic, churning cut is a great teaser. This summer's going to get weird!

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New Music Personal Picks

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Balkan Beat Box Justin Jacobs Liars of Montreal 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 Scott Mervis of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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

Triggers, "In the Offing" - On its first album in four years -- it got tripped up by some label issues -- the Pittsburgh band gets a nice sonic sheen in an LA studio with producer Dave Trumfio (Wilco, Built to Spill). The resulting album, "Forcing A Smile," draws again on long-running influences, ranging from the Beatles to Elvis Costello to Weezer. This one is on the easy-flowing countrified side.

Joey Ramone, "I Couldn't Sleep" - This Jerry Lee Lewis-style rocker comes from "Ya Know?," a second posthumous solo album from the lead Ramone. The whole things was pieced together from demo vocals by adoring musicians, including Steve Van Zandt and Joan Jett. Clearly, it isn't Joey Ramone at his best, but it's great to hear his voice again, and if this gets people to pull out their Ramones albums, it's done the trick.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Joey Ramone Scott Mervis The 9:13 Buzz Triggers

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:

Jaill, "Waste a Lot of Things" - I was way into this band's Sub Pop debut in 2010, and buzzed a tune from that record; next month, they return with a follow-up, Traps. They've got a slacker-rock, sometimes almost surfer-y vibe, except they're from Milwaukee, so they're probably not surfers, right?

Jill Barber, "Tell Me" - I saw this Vancouverian songstress at Hard Rock Cafe, making her Pittsburgh debut, a couple of weeks ago. Not many folks can pull off the retro-jazz-standards-revival thing, but she's a great songwriter and a charming performer, and has a wonderful voice. Here's hoping she makes her way back soon.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Andy Mulkerin Jaill Jill Barber 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 Scott Tady of The Beaver County Times.

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

Yuck, “Chew” - Exhilarating U.K. band specializing in shoe-gazing guitar-rock, which like this new single, has a proper balance between sludgy and spacey. Not sure what they’re getting at with a chorus that says, “We chew it together.” Probably doesn’t matter.

2:54, “You’re Early” - And you’re early if you get hip now to this British duo’s brooding, atmospheric debut single. They’re two sisters, Colette and Hannah Thurlow, who have toured with the aforementioned Yuck and Melissa Auf de Maur of Hole. I understand why this song makes Cindy Howes recall her gothic days :)

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New Music Personal Picks

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2:54 Scott Tady The 9:13 Buzz Yuck

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 (talking to us via Skype!), contributing writer to Billboard & Relix Magazine.

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

Yuna, "Live Your Life - Is there a cooler sounding lady out there right now? No, the answer is no. Yuna is from Malaysia, and her story is pretty wild: singing in Malaysian pubs, becoming a Malaysian celebrity, courted by an American producer via email and then flown to America to record this debut. The track was produced by Pharrell Williams, he of great Neptunes and N.E.R.D. fame. Together, they make this laid-back, incredibly sexy and life-affirming track that'll be stuck in your head for the next 10 to 12 business day.

Oberhofer, "Awy Frm U" - This song was originally released as a single in 2010, but it finally shows up on this months "Time Capsules II," the debut LP from Oberhofer, band of frontman Brad Oberhofer. It's sloppy, playful but sincere kitchen-sink pop, and the band members play their instruments to death. I don't know if I've ever heard more piano bashing than on this record. It's a whole lot of fun, and you should probably buy it.

Bonus picks!

Reggae! I know WYEP isn't huge on the genre, but it's almost summer and you deserve some good jams. Sure, every almost summer barbecue will play some Marley or Tosh, but introduce your friends to two new bands and become more popular than ever. The first is from Nigeria: Nazarenes, making fuzzy, deep grooves. The second is Morning Sun and the Essentials, making more pop-friendly, sunshine-y reggae. You can find both on the internet.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Justin Jacobs Oberhofer The 9:13 Buzz Yuna

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:

Cloud Nothings, "Stay Useless" - This starts out like so many indie-rock songs, sounding like the Strokes, but once the vocals get going, Dylan Baldi's personality takes over and you get that more raw emotion the Cleveland rocker injects into his tunes. Although this one is tight, poppy and, admittedly, repetitive, it lays the groundwork for some of the longer sonic jams on the band's explosive third album, "Attack on Memory."

Big Snow Big Thaw, "Red Hollow Road" - This Pittsburgh trio may not be rewriting the book on Americana, but this song showcases the unique vocal range of Jim Sabol, who also plays banjo. In his travels to Alabama, he took the windy Red Hollow Road and was inspired to write this mysterious Southern gothic tune with a melody manages to lodge into your head.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Big Snow Big Thaw Cloud Nothings Scott Mervis 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:

Wooden Wand, "Winter in Kentucky" - It's not a seasonal song at this point, but it's a good one. James Jackson Toth records under the name Wooden Wand, and put this album out last fall, but it's being re-released, and I'm only now getting into it. You should too. I think some reference points for his rambling, storytelling style would include Bob Dylan and Craig Finn.

Good Night, States, "Tired of Making Sense" - This is the most straightforward guitar rocker on the local band's long-awaited new full-length. Not unlike the last one from GN,S, this one has grown on me a little each time I've listened -- and that's a good sign for an album.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Andy Mulkerin Good Night States The 9:13 Buzz Wooden Wand

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):

The Forty Nineteens, “Take Me to Vegas” - Garage-rock turbocharged with a splash of late-‘80s alternative from a SoCal band featuring Monaca High graduate Nick Zeigler on drums and vocals. Produced by David Newton (The Mighty Lemon Drops), this debut disc, due out April 17, reminds me of the Hold Steady. The Forty Nineteens make their Pittsburgh debut in late July.

Van Hunt, “Character” - Dayton, Ohio, rhythm-and-blues artist Van Hunt had the fourth-best reviewed new studio album of 2011 according to Metacritic. At the suggestion of his manager, “American Idol’s” Randy Jackson, Hunt released a live album two weeks ago, from which this cut was taken. The live album showcases Hunt’s refreshing take on R&B, melding the raw sexuality and guitar virtuosity of Prince with the glam-rock dramatics of David Bowie, and a dash of P-Funk spaciness. See him Thursday night at the Thunderbird Café.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Scott Tady The 9:13 Buzz The Forty Nineteens Van Hunt

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 (talking to us via Skype!), contributing writer to Billboard & Relix Magazine.

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

Regina Spektor, "All the Rowboats" - She's back! Everyone's favorite Russian immigrant piano player will release her new record, What We Saw From the Cheap Seats, in a few months, but in the meantime she's dropped this tasty bit of dark, deeply melodic and oddly tweaked pop. This one harkens back to her weirder days of 11:11 and (my favorite) Soviet Kitsch, instead of the brighter pop of latter records.

Suckers, "Turn on the Sunshine" - These dudes released my favorite record of 2010, and their second effort, the questionably titled Candy Salad, drops next month. This first single is a good teaser — more straightforward but still twisted indie pop, and happy as all hell. If you like this one, rest assured, it is not the best song on the album.

Extra fun track! -->

Lucero, "On My Way Downtown" - A time-tested country punk band hires a horn section and gets all Memphis-Stax-soul on us on new album Women and Work. It's a good look for the guys.

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New Music Personal Picks

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Justin Jacobs Lucero Regina Spektor Suckers The 9:13 Buzz

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