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Artist: 
Craig Finn
Label: 
Partisan

I'll get my biases out right now: Craig Finn is my favorite lyricist of all time. He also is the frontman of The Hold Steady, who are undoubtedly my favorite band of all time. I can't possibly put into words what his work means to me, so I'm not even going to give it an attempt.

Sounds Like: 
Mountain Goats
Sounds Like: 
Paul Westerberg
Name: 
Nick Kivi
Date Reviewed: 
03/22/2017
Artist: 
Dan The Man
Label: 
Bright Antenna Records

Circadian Circus by the drummer of The Wombats, comprises of songs that have a very pop folky and upbeat sound to but at the same time, very laidback. The lyrics are intriguing as a lot of it pertains to our feelings of the society we live in today. "Not As Far As It Looks" a.k.a Self Help Song is a very upbeat and cheery song, reminding us to live in the present. "Waiting For Love" is one of the more slower and sadder songs. "K-O'd Reprise" is essentially the singer storytelling with music playing in the background.

Sounds Like: 
Little Comets
Sounds Like: 
Will Joseph Cook
Sounds Like: 
The Wombats
Name: 
Joann Kohng
Date Reviewed: 
03/22/2017
Artist: 
Johnossi
Label: 
Universal Music

Blood Jungle by the Sweden based rock duo, Johnossi, consists of some aggressive, powerful and moderately angsty songs. You can hear a variety of genres in the songs with unique vocals. Although "Air is Free" and "Hands" are not FCC clean, the songwriting for these two songs are defintely worth a listen. "Hey Kiddo" also is a very upbeat song with a catchy tune. "Weak Spots" and "Got Your Gun" are perhaps the most rock-style songs of the album.

Sounds Like: 
The Ark
Sounds Like: 
Caesars
Name: 
Joann Kohng
Date Reviewed: 
03/21/2017
Artist: 
Be Charlotte
Label: 
AWAI/Kobalt Label Service

One Drop EP by the Scottish singer-songwriter, Be Charlotte, is definitely refreshing to the ear. The songs are super fun and catchy to listen to. Be Charlotte songwriting is exceptionally good. She brings the lyrics of "Discover" and "Machines That Breathe" alive, the title speaks for itself as to what the song will sound like. "Discover" is a more upbeat and hopeful song, and "Machines That Breathe" brings out a more fascinated and curious sound.

Sounds Like: 
Lisa Mitchell
Sounds Like: 
Pumarosa
Sounds Like: 
La Roux
Name: 
Joann Kohng
Date Reviewed: 
03/21/2017
Artist: 
CCTV
Label: 
Self-released

CCTV are a band (supposedly) at the forefront of the underground Midwestern hardcore revival scene. Most of this music is pretty underground and DIY and spread in fame almost entirely due to notorious youtube channel Jimmy (RIP) who uploaded DIY punk released from all over the place. With most of the Midwestern underground scene currently  being composed of DEVO revivalists, CCTV take clear inspiration from the Minutemen instead.

Sounds Like: 
The Soviettes
Sounds Like: 
Minutemen
Name: 
Alex Siegel
Date Reviewed: 
03/10/2017
Artist: 
Pissed Jeans
Label: 
Sub Pop

PA-based hardore band Pissed Jeans put out an excellent record with Why Love Now. Punk releases can often be plagued by similar problems as genres like standard Indie Rock or Garage Rock, in that a vast majority of the music sounds very similar and there isn't a whole lot of things to distinguish bands from one another. Pissed Jeans manage to capture raw punk energy but play music that sounds oddly progressive for a genre that notoriously rejected any forms of complex or innovative songwriting or musical elements.

Sounds Like: 
Fucked Up
Sounds Like: 
Black Flag
Name: 
Alex Siegel
Date Reviewed: 
03/10/2017
Artist: 
The Orwells
Label: 
Atlantic

The Orwells broke into indie mainstream with their 2014 album Disgraceland, and have just returned with their follow-up, Terrible Human Beings. This album isn't much different from their previous work, but the reasons why they ever became popular are still quite apparent. The album is full of solid riffs, but at 13 songs, the album feels pretty bloated, as there isn't much to differentiate the songs from each other, and by the end of it they all sound pretty same-ish.

Sounds Like: 
Radkey
Sounds Like: 
Twin Peaks
Name: 
Alex Siegel
Date Reviewed: 
03/10/2017
Artist: 
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Label: 
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah has recently released a new album with the title of The Tourist. This album accentuates some shrill vocals and catchy baselines. While the consistent upbeat and rhythm of the album places The Tourist into a sort of pop-like classification, there are certain tones and stylings that also converge upon an indy rock style. This album provides a unique look at the more angsty side of pop rock.

Sounds Like: 
STRFKR
Sounds Like: 
Wolf Parade
Name: 
Nick Ziolkowski
Date Reviewed: 
03/09/2017
Artist: 
Cavegreen
Label: 
Self-Released

Cavegreen’s Vita Lucida combined pop with an almost sort of sad punk. The songs were slow and the singer’s voice sounded like a cool blend of Ellie Goulding, Stevie Nicks and the members of Chvrches. The music was generally very relaxing and each song was fairly unique. At times the music was hard to listen to because it did not flow super well and the songs were individually kind of choppy. However, I did enjoy the tracks Pacific Clouds, Little Bird and Ancient Like Suns.

Sounds Like: 
Chvrches
Sounds Like: 
Purity Ring
Name: 
Sophia Courtney
Date Reviewed: 
03/09/2017
Artist: 
Meatbodies
Label: 
In the Red Records

Meatbodies' second release is a concept album that is easy to listen to and even easier to tune out. The opening track begins with the sounds of birds chirping and fades into a pleasant, but repetative guitar riff that goes on for far too long. The lyrics, although whimsical and enjoyable, show no evidence of a coherent storyline. None of the tracks truly stand out in a significant way, but all of them have an easy-on-the-ears fuzzy psychadelic rock sound.

Sounds Like: 
Allah-Las
Sounds Like: 
Syd Barrett
Name: 
Sally Lynx
Date Reviewed: 
03/08/2017