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blip]video2[/blip] Dub Thompson, the California-based project driven by Matt Pulos and Evan Laffer, has had a little help from friends in fueling their need to get weird. Foxygen's Jonathan Rado helped move things along while the duo stayed with him in Bloomington, Indiana, for a summer, and that band's crackly pop sensibility -- and perhaps the free-flowing, blissed-out Midwestern summer vibes -- seem to have found their way into the tunes.
blip]video2[/blip] Slothrust, a Brooklyn by way of Boston band, is a rock trio aiming for the gut, spearheaded by the deep, forceful vocals of songwriter Leah Wellbaum, who grew the band from a previous solo effort. Blasting from subtle, smooth Pavement-isms to full on thrashing happy punk is sort of their thing, and they do it oh so well. Though the band is comprised of musicians with jazz and blues backgrounds, they don't get hung up on that, opting for the approach of making catchy, memorable rock songs by any means possible.
blip]video2[/blip] NYC’s Walking Shapes is a band with the rare ability to create songs that are at once totally original while also bringing to mind familiar melodies, so you’ll swear you've heard them before. That feeling that you must know this one... it has to be a radio hit by Kings Of Leon, or Flaming Lips, or The Strokes, or Fleetwood Mac... no, but it's cut from the same perfectly-executed musical fabric. There's a sweet blend of decades of guitar-based rock and pop music here as the soundtrack to a band finding its way and building their own legacy. The guys stopped by after a whirlwind of tour, record release, and 24 NYC shows in 24 hours to share some music and talk a bit about the inspiration for their album.
blip]video2[/blip] Carsick Cars are a rock trio from Beijing. Singing mostly in English and taking a broad interpretation of noise rock, their songs are exceptionally catchy and melodic, and the Sonic Youth (who they've toured with) influence is definitely hard at work -- pleasantly so. They've been at the forefront of the Chinese indie music movement for almost a decade, though lineup changes have left Zhang Shouwang as the sole founding/consistent member of the band even as the group’s popularity and work with other artists and projects has continued to grow their reputation worldwide.
blip]video2[/blip] Picastro is a decade-strong Toronto-based project, built around the songwriting of Liz Hysen. Through lineup changes, the band has maintained a soft, sleepy tone in its sparse and experimental indie rock. Unconventional folk, noise, and rock elements all find their way into the songs on record, while here, Liz performs solo, stripping them down to their barest core to expose the simple, beautiful nature of her music.
blip]video2[/blip] This Portland, Oregon-based group is a bright, spirited collective with 6 or more voices joining in, rallying around the lyrics of bandleader Tim Perry. With a positive vibe and uplifting themes, they operate under the admirable notion of using music to change the world. With their own language and an infectiously positive outlook paired with infectiously catchy songs, Ages And Ages just might have a shot at achieving their goal while creating some brilliant music along the way.
blip]video[/blip] Brooklyn-based Shilpa Ray left the Happy Hookers at home and brought her harmonium to the studio for a solo set, which included two tracks from her new EP. Just off a tour supporting Nick Cave, who also released Shilpa's EP via his label, her songs feature a familiar howl and darkness while tackling the issues and concern of the modern world.
blip]video2[/blip] Thus Owls is a transatlantic band centered around husband and wife duo Erika and Simon Angell. Originally an outlet for Erika's songs in her home country of Sweden, meeting and falling in love with Simon's music on tour ultimately led to the pair being married and living together in Montreal. Musically, their style is an experimental collage of genres, from rock to folk and pop, building lush, epic melodies with a nostalgic, almost psychedelic feel. Erika's connection to her grandmother -- largely tied to growing up in the same house she once lived in -- inspired the stories, artwork, and songs on the band's latest record.
blip]video2[/blip] The Dough Rollers are an early blues-inspired rock quartet, begun by Jack Byrne and Malcolm Ford in 2008 (now joined by Kyle Olson and Josh Barocas). This hard-touring band has played with Bob Dylan, John Mellencamp, and Queens of the Stone Age, and released a 7" via Jack White's Third Man Records. They rolled through our studio to share some tunes and chat with Maia.

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