Canada, over the last few years have been pretty consistent on exporting good bands. One of those bands that I’ve really come to enjoy is Actors. This Post-Punk/New Wave esque band have really taken the genre by storm. Their new album, Acts Of Worship (Out Oct 1), is drenched in hard driving beats, huge hooks, and soothing atmosphere. Their modern approach to the classic sounds, are reaching new heights. The pop sensibilities that come via their influences really shine on the album. When you listen to the new album as well as their previous, 2018’s It Will Come To You, you can really hear the evolution of the bands sound and writing abilities. Actors is a band that will be at the forefront of the Post-Punk genre in no time!
A while back I wrote about a Los Angeles based band that summoned some pretty cool Bowie-esque moments to accompany their blend of post-punk and alternative rock. That band was Darkroads and they are back with new music that is damn good. Combining what the have done in the past but, now with a bit more of a synthwave element, Darkroads have really honed in on their sound. Their first new song “Close Your Eyes” is a perfect example of this. It’s still got that cool dark and eerie sense but now has something else to it that helps stand out from their peers. As I described before, the way they hit on the darkness yet create these bright spots with the music is quite beautiful. The clean guitar tones provide the light while the drums, bass and vocals usher in the dark. Darkroads are definitely one to travel on.
It’s always exciting when bands you really enjoy but, haven’t heard from in a while release new music. Especially when the new music that is released is THIS good. Glaare have released “Mirrors” the first song and video from their very anticipated forthcoming album, Your Hellbound Heart. This darkwave, dream pop and goth-rock band from Los Angeles has been leaving quite a mark since their inception and their 2017 album, To Deaf and Day, is one of the best albums in the genre in the last decade. So, it comes as no surprise here that, on this new track, Glaare picks up where they left off but have added more compelling elements to really drive home their style and sound.
The music world these days is full of interesting combinations. There are endless possibilities as to where you can take things as well as the countless different bands and styles you can take inspiration and influence from. In the rock world, electronic music has really become a prevalent force in where things are headed. So many bands have jumped on the bandwagon of using electronic elements but, so many of them really don’t know how to properly incorporate it into their sound the right way. Which brings me to the band of the week. Contranistas, a two piece band from Bakersfield, CA, have been developing a pretty fun and unique way to incorporate the electronic element along with some other cool styles like Post-Punk, Indie, and just straight up rock. By using a plethora of pedals and effects along with their collective influences, Contranistas have taken their inspired sound to new heights of loud, gloomy, psychedelic and a bit dancey. Dax Dominguez (bass/guitar/synth/loops) and Robert Morgan (drums/percussion) are packing quite a punch together and have made something that stands out among the generic and tired old electronic sounds you’d find in rock music today.
Over the last few years, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the resurgence of post-punk. There have been a bunch of bands that have really nailed that sound and vibe and have cemented a place in my rotation. Recently, I was introduced to another post-punk styled band that has really grabbed my attention. They are called The Wraith and they are badass. Influenced and inspired by bands like Killing Joke, Samhain and T.S.O.L., The Wraith have taken the post-punks sound and added a bit of cool Death Rock/Punk vibe to their sound. Frontman Davey Bales, has a distinctive voice that delivers the goods. The other members of the band, which includes former Blink-182 drummer Scott Raynor and Brit bassist Paul Rogers, have given the music and songs the darkness and depth needed to make the songs shine. Their new album, Gloom Ballet (out November 29 via Southern Lord) was produced by Mat Mitchell, who has worked with Love And Rockets, The Flaming Lips, Meat Puppets, King Crimson and Puscifer to name a few. The first single released from Gloom Ballet, “Wing Of Night” has the right attitude and gusto that will have you inadvertently dancing and wanting to mosh at the same time. The future is not as gloomy as their name might suggest. The Wraith are going to be leaving their mark for sure.
It seems that the post-punk genre has really taken over as of late. There are so many bands that have come about in the past couple years that have incorporated the post-punk sound a la Joy Division, Bauhaus and so many other influential bands from the beginning. I’ve come across a few that really stand out and have made “that” sound into something cool and different. One band that I’ve heard recently is Del Judas. Instead of just relying on post-punk influences, Charlie Schmid aka Del Judas has taken a different approach. You might also recognize Charlie from his time playing drums in the band Tombs along with a few others. Growing up in a household that listened to country music and artists like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline to name a few, had a profound effect on Charlie. So by taking those childhood influences and melding them together with the likes of Joy Division, Bauhaus and a touch of Chris Isaak, Del Judas stands out on it’s own merit and sounds different and fresh. There are some moments throughout the album that almost seem like they are inspired by Leonard Cohen too. The debut album “DEITY” will be out July 13 via Primal Architecture.
Del Judas is definitely one of the bright spots of an already exciting year for music. Personally, I can’t wait to see what’s to come for this project and for people to hear how damn good it is.
Post Punk has fast been gaining and growing as one of the most popular genres these days. I’ve seen a lot of people from heavier bands going in this direction as side projects or after they’ve left their bands. There is a band hailing from Vancouver, Canada called ACTORS that have really nailed the post punk/darkwave sound. Actors have taken the classic post-punk sound and added a bit of a modern twist to it without losing the true essence of what the genre is. Their synth drenched scores could easily be found in countless films, all the while the songs have a dance vibe to them that fit in clubs. Led by singer/guitarist Jason Corbett, ACTORS have taken their well studied sound and delivered the goods. Their album It Will Come To You is chock full of dark sounds but with a sense of light underneath the beats.
I love being a fan of different genres of music. It really is such a great feeling to hear bands from different realms and soak it all in. When you hear “that” band that just hits at the right time and place, you know it’s something special. I’d like to introduce you all to GLAARE. Soaked in post-punk, dark-wave and 90’s alternative, GLAARE deliver melancholy and melody with a sense of brightness through all the darkness. The bands latest album “To Deaf and Day” is the work of Rachael Pierce, Cameron Carlin (Black Mare) and Brandon Pierce (ex-Ancestors). This is the bands first full length album and it encapsulates everything you’d want from the genre and then some. Throughout the 8 songs on the album, you get to experience the beautiful darkness that lay inside GLAARE. They are definitely one band that deserves your undivided attention.
What else can I say about Spirit In The Room that I haven’t said before? I’m not kidding when I say that with every release they get better and better. The wealth of inspiration that flows in and out of Dennis Sanders is astonishing. There are a few groups I’ve written about here on Audioeclectica that have the same type of passion as Dennis and Spirit In The Room. Well, Dennis has done it yet again. The newest song released, “Kid” is a stark and minimalist post punk gem. Instead of describing what it sounds like, just listen and let the music take you away. Something else you should do is go see Spirit In The Room live. They are one hell of a live band. It’s an “experience” seeing them.
Los Angeles is flush with great bands. It always has been but these days, it takes a little bit of searching to find the gems. Recently I came across a band that really peaked my interest. They are called Darkroads. The best way to describe them is a post punk band with Bowie tendencies and a bit of 90’s alternative rock. Darkroads are the type of band that I’ve found myself gravitating to over the years. The way they hit on the darkness of life yet create these bright spots with the music is quite beautiful. The clean guitar tones provide that light while the drums, bass and vocals usher in the dark. Their first EP/demo RockDie from 2013 is quite the listen and judging by the songs new songs up on their soundcloud page, Darkroads are traveling down the right roads to new music.