Soundclouds of the Underground: A-Punk Edition
ABOVE: THE BURNT ONES. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROB WILLIAMSON
These days, music truly lives online, with an infinite number of websites dedicated to hosting tunes for the laptop-wielding masses. However, the web’s bottomless pit of blogs isn’t the only place to troll for mp3 treasures—some of the newest and most exciting (Internet-friendly) artists can be sought out via Soundcloud, the online stage that allows musicians to promote and distribute their music to fans and friends across the globe. In this weekly column, expert Internet sleuth Alex Chapman goes deep into the depths of the music-sharing site, in hopes of shedding light on emerging acts, as well as sharing some digital diamonds in the rough.
Thanks to technology, much of today’s music can be and is perfectly polished. Don’t get us wrong, we love computer-heavy compositions as much as the next guy (this column should serve as solid proof), but sometimes it’s nice to listen to something that strays away from 808s and synth sounds and embraces its rawness. Punk and all its sub-genres have never been afraid of this challenge. Intriguing, exciting, and a bit of a relief if you tend to stay on the more careful side of things, punk carries toughness in its vulnerability. For this week’s column, we chose three songs that exhibit all the raucous, boisterous freedom that punk has to offer. Keeping in line with punk spirit, none of these artists has a Twitter account.
Burnt Ones: “Web”
Who: A trio out of San Francisco consisting of singer/guitarist Mark Tester, drummer Amy Crouch, and bassist Brian Allen, the Burnt Ones have been making reverb-heavy rock with ’60s pop tendencies since 2009.
The Song: “Web” is catchy while being a bit messy—the overlap of pop, punk, and grunge apparent in its distorted sound. The track has a tough exterior, but there’s rock-‘n’-roll purity in its stripped-down nature, making it a sweet, fun track regardless of your feelings towards garage rock.
Current Project: You can pre-order the band’s new record (featuring “Web”) now via the Burger Records website.
Eat Skull: “Medication Time”
Who: Portland, Oregon’s Eat Skull is a band whose sound is warm and fuzzy in a way that only noise-pop can capture. The band’s singer and guitarist Rob Enbom steers the tracks with his sheer, often shouty vocals that nevertheless maintain a charming pitch.
The Song: “No worries, it’s medication time,” sings Enbom on the song, its melancholic lyrics a stark contrast to the happy chord progression, as well as Enbom’s upbeat melodies.
Current Project: This track is part of Volar Records’ first single series, which can be preordered here.
Sex Church: “Untitled”
Who: Sex Church is a band from Vancouver, Canada that sits on the slightly dark side of post-punk music. Don’t let their hilarious name fool you—the band is experimental, dark, and intense.
The Song: Marked as a demo from January on the band’s Soundcloud, the song packs a fervor that calls upon an older punk era, a huge slab of noise moving with relative swiftness. The vocals are subdued, but it’s the guitars that really drive things home, their determined, dark chords sporadically pitch-bending throughout the track.
Current Project: Keep up with the band via their Facebook page.
Soundclouds of the Underground runs every Thursday. For more, click here.