(Artwork care of Karen Ramsay (www.karenramsay.com), profile photo care of brianlackeyphotography.com)

Monday, March 28, 2011

March singles

March offers a range of singles again, from pop Americana to grooves to heavy grind. Here's a taste.

Matt Duke - Needle and Thread (from One Day Die)

Matt Duke's next album, One Day Die, is due to drop on March 29 on Ryko. Duke has a singer songwriter sound that recalls a brighter-eyed Ryan Adams. Needle and Thread starts with a confessional Americana vibe. The sweetened backing vocals in the chorus take the song into a poppier space. The lyrics are clever, the music is pretty, and Duke seems to be going for a more produced sound than some of his earlier work.

Catch Needle and Thread on Duke's Facebook page.

Eternal Summers - Safe at Home (from Silver)
The self-described dream punk duo wanted to reach back to the '90s when they made the video for Safe at Home. Hazy and simple, it's like a post punk deconstruction of Crimson and Clover crossed with Pink Floyd's Free Four. The simple guitar-drums-voice arrangement is sweet, but it's a disappointment that this languid interlude is so short.

The video for Safe at Home is on Gorilla vs. Bear.

Afrobeta - Nighttime (from Under the Streets, due out Summer 2011)

Offering a different take on what a strong duo can do, Miami's Afrobeta builds club-friendly dance grooves. Crisp vocals and tight beats set the mood along with a sine wave electronic bass line. Still, Nighttime's interesting structure transcends the "dance only" label. The verses stay fairly disco except for the catchy electronic bass, but the small bridge sections are the meat. They mix it up with break beats and a brief rap section.

Download Nighttime here and keep an ear out for Under the Streets later in the summer.

Art of Dying - Die Trying (from Vices and Virtues)

Resurrecting a heavy grunge sound, Art of Dying provides a driving, cathartic sound on their new single, Die Trying. The track's dynamics range from softer resignation at the verse openings to anthemic grinds, but Die Trying is mostly full of hard edges and Gothic tension.

iTunes has Die Trying as a free single right now or check out the video on Noisecreep.

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