Look, we know we throw a lot of new music at you. We also know that not everyone who comes to this site has the time to be as involved with or informed about the local scene as maybe they’d like to be. So for those casual readers who either can’t or have no interest in keeping up with the parade of artists we try to cover, who may not know the difference between Bitter and Biters, we have created our TRIPLE THREAT feature. The premise is simple: every Friday our writers will put their heads together and come up with three tracks that grabbed our attention over that week. Then we tell you why the songs are great and worth listening to. That’s it. Maybe some weeks we’ll have a guest commentator come in and share their favorites, but the format will always remain the same: three songs, some words, and we out. Enjoy.
Background – “Into the Wall”
From an upcoming EP
What? Wow! ZING! Mundane patterns in the woodwork look fine — until a rubber hammer smashes you in the head, and shows you stars that flash in pink and orange pixels. Background? Nah, this is like the second or third layer in a really trippy portrait deconstructed on Photoshop, where the head has shifted three inches off the neck, and the flesh glows in phosphorous smears. In two baffling minutes, “Into the Wall” jerks and swerves through a time-space collision between the Fall and Guerilla Toss — and, given the louche and wry vocals here, Background live for the cartoony carnage that follows. POW! BIFF! BAM! Are those stars, or just figments of your dehydration? Here’s hoping the upcoming EP will slake our thirst for more of this madness. – Lee Adcock
Faun and a Pan Flute – “Ball”
From the LP, 2014-2016
Oh yes! The masters of frenetic rhythms are back and intent upon slicing, dicing, and chopping your preconceptions of progressive music into a chaotic salad guaranteed to get lettuce in your teeth. On their new track “Ball,” the ensemble balance percussive flair with assertive brass. As a genre, “experimental” has never done justice to the bold intentionality of Faun and a Pan Flute. Even though they’re willing to tread into realms unknown, their instruments know the destination well, even if the players are still figuring it out. – Russell Rockwell
2014-2016 is out today and is available on limited-edition cassette and CD via Bandcamp.
Faun and a Pan Flute will celebrate the release of 2014-2016 tomorrow night, July 29, at the Mammal Gallery alongside Sister Sai, Josh Dean (Baltimore), AGYN, and Karaoke (Grace Wayne, Chris Yonker, Adrian Switon, Tymb Gratz). Doors open at 8 p.m.
Blis. – “Stale Smoke”
From the upcoming LP, No One Loves You
For those of us who have long waited for local rockers Blis. to unveil new music, this week’s release of “Stale Smoke” via Sterogum arrives as both a sigh of relief and a fist pump of triumph. The group’s new single is the first track we’ve heard since their 2015 EP, Starting Fires in My Parents House, and while the band’s lineup may have changed, their knack for crafting stormy post-hardcore anthems remains firmly intact. Built around flailing guitars, propulsive drums, and Aaron Gossett’s moody vocals, Blis.’ latest is every bit the raw and powerful return we hoped it would be. – Guillermo Castro
No One Loves You is out October 6 via Sargent House. Pre-orders are available here.