Posts Tagged ‘Tacocat’

Seattle band Tacocat will release “This Mess Is a Place”, their new full-length album on LP/CD/Digital and Cassette tomorrow, Friday, May 3rd. The album is their first for Sub Pop Records, and heralds a more pop-driven and ebullient direction in their sound. Critics are calling it “as effervescent as ever”and “the band’s most polished record to date” ( The Seattle Times). Checkout the band’s trippy music video for “New World”.

This Mess is a Place (release date: May 3rd, 2019)

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The rise of the band Tacocat might just be one of the year’s most surprising success stories. We knew we liked the band the minute we heard their 2016 album, “Lost Time”, we just didn’t know they had the sort of slick-pop that would propel them to the cusp of alternative stardom. The band are set to release their latest album, “This Mess Is a Place”, their first for Sub Pop Records, in May, and have this week shared the latest single from it, Hologram.

This Mess Is A Place is the band’s fourth album, and from what we’ve heard seems to be a giant leap forward, the scratchy punkier sound of earlier material giving way to an ebullient pop sound reminiscent of Diet Cig or Rilo Kiley. Hologram is the latest example, beneath a shimmering exterior the track details a discussion on power dynamics and how perceptions and reality aren’t always the same thing. At its heart it’s a song about stepping outside of the box the world tried to put you in, advising us all to not be held back by the limitations we think we possess, “just close your eyes and think about the Milky Way. Just remember if you can, power is a hologram”. 

Tacocat are a band who seem to exist in potentially contradictory worlds, on the one hand there’s a bubble-gum punk band, four friends making music for the joy of doing it, on the other is a band facing up to the difficult world they seen in front of them, as vocalist Emily Noakes puts it, “we can examine some hard stuff, make fun of some evil stuff, feel some soft feelings, feel some rage feelings, feel some bitter-ass feelings, sift through memories, feel wavy-existential.

This Mess Is A Place is out May 3rd via Sub Pop Records.

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Our favourite palindromic glitter punx from SeattleTacocat, give us our video of the day today. Enjoy a ‘Grains of Salt,’ from forthcoming LP This Mess Is A Place (available May 3rd on Sub Pop Records).

When Seattle band Tacocat—vocalist Emily Nokes, bassist Bree McKenna, guitarist Eric Randall, and drummer Lelah Maupin  first started in 2007, the world they were responding to was vastly different from the current Seattle scene of diverse voices they’ve helped foster. It was a world of house shows, booking DIY tours on MySpace, and writing funny, deliriously catchy feminist pop-punk songs when feminism was the quickest way to alienate yourself from the then-en vogue garage-rock bros. Their lyrical honesty, humor, and hit-making sensibilities have built the band a fiercely devoted fanbase over the years, one that has followed them from basements to dive bars to sold-out shows . Every step along the way has been a seamless progression—from silly songs about Tonya Harding and psychic cats to calling out catcallers and poking fun at entitled weekend-warrior tech jerks on their last two records on Hardly Art.

“This Mess is a Place”, Tacocat’s fourth full-length and first on Sub Pop, finds the band waking up the morning after the 2016 election and figuring out how to respond to a new reality where evil isn’t hiding under the surface at all—it’s front and center, with new tragedies and civil rights assaults filling up the scroll of the newsfeed every day. “What a time to be barely alive,” laments “Crystal Ball,” a gem that examines the more intimate side of responding emotionally to the news cycle. How do you keep fighting when all you want to do is stay in bed all day? “Stupid computer stupor/Oh my kingdom for some better ads,” Nokes sings, throwing in some classic Tacocat snark, “Truth spread so thin/It stops existing.”

Tacocat are doing what they’ve always done so well: mingling brightness, energy, and hope with political critique. This Mess is a Place is charged with a hopefulness that stands in stark contrast to music that celebrates apathy, despair, and numbness. Tacocat feels it all and cares, a lot, whether they’re singing odes to the magical connections we feel with our pets (“Little Friend”), imagining what a better earth might look like (“New World”), or trying to find humor in a wholly unfunny world (“The Joke of Life”).

Throughout the album, Tacocat questions power structures and the way we interact with them, recalling the feminist sci-fi of Ursula K. Le Guin in pop-music form. “Rose-Colored Sky” examines the privilege of people who have been able to skate through life without ever experiencing systemic disadvantage: “For all the years spent/Hot lava shaping me/For all the arguments/I wonder who else would I be?” Nokes sings. “If I wasn’t on the battleground/I bet I could’ve gone to space by now.” “Hologram” reminds us to step outside ourselves and try to see beyond imaginary structures that trap us: “Just close your eyes and think about the Milky Way/Just remember if you can, power is a hologram.”

“Grains of Salt” finds the band at the best they’ve ever sounded: Maupin’s spirited drums, McKenna’s bouncy walking bass, Randall’s catchy guitar and Nokes’ soaring melody combine to create a bonafide roller-rink hit that reminds us that it just takes some time, we’re in the middle of the ride, and to live for what matters to you. It’s a delightfully cathartic moment and the cornerstone of the record when they exclaim: “Don’t forget to remember who the fuck you are!”

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Seattle pop-punk band Tacocat is also responsible for the new Powerpuff Girls Theme, if you need any more reason to get on board. Their follow-up to NVM, Tacocat’s Lost Time is just the sort of ‘90s-nostalgic pop punk the doctor ordered. Combining sci-fi and vaporwave vibes with the social-political concerns of the information age, Lost Time is filled with great singles. Whether it’s “Dana Katherine Scully,” honouring the X-Files heroine, or “I Hate the Weekend” written in dedication to the tech bros taking over the band’s home-city, Tacocat’s Lost Time scratches that topical pop punk scene.

Produced by new wave-shoegazer Erik Blood, Lost Time is also the most meticulously recorded of Tacocat’s three releases to date. Expansiv creative, catchy guitar hooks, pithy, well-crafted lyrics, and in their elaboration on anti-patriarchal themes from NVM and their debut, Shame Spiral.

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“I Hate The Weekend” is the first single from Tacocat’s Lost Time, released April 1st, 2016 on Hardly Art Records.

TACOCAT – ” The Internet “

Posted: September 29, 2016 in MUSIC
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Tacocat have just shared a video for “The Internet,” a song off this year’s Lost Time. Like the song itself, the video (directed by Faye Orlove) takes on the uglier, anonymous corner of the inter web with basically a desktop video capture (animated and annotated) lyric video. It’s pretty cool and you can watch it below.
The band are currently on tour across the States,

The official video for ‘The Internet’ Directed by Faye Orlove, Purchase the new Tacocat album, ‘Lost Time’

Often referred to as Sub Pop’s “sister label,” Hardly Art is an offshoot of Sub Pop designed to spotlight emerging talent. While the label’s initial focus was local when it started up in 2007, it has since expanded its roster to welcome artists from all over the United States and abroad.

With the goal of cultivating a stable of vital, young, and relatively undiscovered bands, Hardly Art journeyed underground while a booming Sub Pop stayed above the surface (though both operate out of a shared office space in downtown Seattle). Since its inception and immediate worldwide reception as a paradigm-shifting, taste-making powerhouse (wink), Hardly Art has expanded to three full-time employees, broadening its purview along the way to include reissues, EPs, one-off seven inches, and other dubiously profitable ventures. Currently, the label prides itself on having one of the most diverse catalogs of any label its size.

From its inaugural release (Arthur & Yu’s In Camera) to its most recent, Hardly Art has sought to support new bands in need of a wider audience, with a particular emphasis on the rising stars of the garage, punk, and bedroom pop genres. Here below are our top recommendations from this wonderful label.

Happy release day to The Julie Ruin! Hit Reset, their highly-anticipated new record is finally out today on CD, LP, cassette, and digital formats. Next Tuesday, July 12th, The Julie Ruin will perform live on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers and the band hits the road in support of Hit Reset starting next Thursday

In late 2014 The Julie Ruin began work on their second album, Hit Reset. Mixed by Eli Crews, Hit Reset expands on the band’s established sound: dancier in spots and moodier in others, with girl group backing vocals and even a touching ballad closer.Hit Reset is the sound of a band who have found their sweet spot. Kathleen Hanna’s vocals are empowered and her lyrics are as pointed and poignant as ever. From the chilling first lines of “Hit Reset” (“Deer hooves hanging on the wall, shell casings in the closet hall”) to the touching lines of “Calverton” (“Without you I might be numb, hiding in my apartment from everyone / Without you I’d take the fifth, or be on my death bed still full of wishes”), Hanna takes a leap into the personal not seen completely on the first album or possibly even in the rest of her work.

Seattle band Tacocat will be capping off their already-incredible 2016 with another nationwide tour this September/October–including a headlining show at Brooklyn’s Music Hall of Williamsburg–with even more dates TBA. Head here for a full list of upcoming shows, including next month’s West Coast run with The Regrettes.

The band’s also heralding the arrival of summer weather with a cover version of The Sunray’s 1965 gem “I Live For The Sun,”

The new record from Seattle band Tacocat has your first look at “Dana Katherine Scully,” the group’s new self-made music video for Lost Time’s opening track. The Powerpuff Girls, for which Tacocat performed the theme song Who’s Got the Power?, premieres on Cartoon Network this Monday.

On the tour front, the band recently opened for Senator Bernie Sanders Seattle Campaign rally, to a crowd of thousands. They tour the U.S. and Europe starting in June, and just announced a slew of West Coast and Southwest U.S. dates for this July. See the tour page for a full list of upcoming Tacocat performances, and find copies of Lost Time on all formats (LPs on colored vinyl!)

 

As La Sera, Katy Goodman turned an aching heart into two marvelous, alluring yet bittersweet break-up albums (2011’s self-titled debut and 2012’s Sees the Light). On her latest, though, the former Vivian Girl is through crying. Hour of the Dawn sees Goodman waking up, throwing open the bedroom windows and welcoming the day.

“I wanted the new La Sera record to sound like Lesley Gore fronting Black Flag,” Goodman says. “I didn’t want it to be another record of me sad, alone in my room. I wanted to have fun playing music and writing songs with a band.” To back her nimble bass lines and enchanting vocals, Goodman assembled a new band helmed by guitarist Todd Wisenbaker.

“We started playing faster, louder and more aggressively,” Goodman says. “I wanted to get that energy onto the album.” The forceful new La Sera line-up set about fleshing out Goodman’s melodies and lyrics into strapping rock anthems, debuting them to enthusiastic crowds on tour, and refining them with a newfound obsession to detail.

After a year of perfecting their new material, La Sera was ready to commit it to tape. In the summer of 2013, the group decamped to a sweltering studio in East Los Angeles with engineer Joel Jerome and banged out the ten songs that would become Hour of the Dawn—an album that never walks, but runs, a collision of unleashed punk and ‘80s power-pop.

“We wanted to make a classic American record,” Wisenbaker says. “The album was inspired by a lot of bands: The Pretenders, Minor Threat, X, The Smiths, The Cars and more.”

The sound that emerged from these disparate influences combined hardcore energy with tuneful harmony, as exemplified by opening track “Losing to the Dark.” Title track “Hour of the Dawn,” meanwhile, rides a steady groove towards a long horizon of sunrise. It’s the record’s thematic center: a final wave goodbye to a messy past and the beginning of a new day. In a burst of bright, immediate and jangly Smiths-inspired pop, “Fall in Place” captures La Sera at an emotional and musical crossroads.

Hour of the Dawn, as its title suggests, heralds the beginning of a radiant and energetic new chapter in La Sera’s evolution—the summit of Goodman’s steady ascent to rock and roll queen dom.

As a prospect it can be terrifying, sad, and worst of all, inevitable. But on I Want to Grow Up, her second album for Hardly Art, Colleen Green lets us know that we don’t have to go it alone.

This latest collection of songs follows a newly 30-year-old Green as she carefully navigates a minefield of emotion. Her firm belief in true love is challenged by the inner turmoil caused by entering modern adulthood, but that doesn’t mean that her faith is defeated. With a nod to her heroes, sentimental SoCal punks The Descendents, Green too wonders what it will be like when she gets old. Throughout songs such as “Some People,” “Deeper Than Love,” and the illustrative title track, the listener has no choice but to feel the sympathetic growing pains of revelatory maturation and the anxieties that come along with it.

Sonically the album is a major change for the LA-based songwriter, who has come to be known for her homemade recordings and merchandise. Her past offerings have been purely Green; testaments to her self-sufficiency and, perhaps, trepidation. This time, she’s got a little help from her friends: the full band heard here includes JEFF the Brotherhood’s Jake Orrall and Diarrhea Planet’s Casey Weissbuch, who collaborated with Green over ten days at Sputnik Sound in Nashville, TN.

I Want to Grow Up is an experience, not unlike life: questioning, learning, taking risks. And in true CG fashion, a quote from a beloved 90s film seems the perfect summation: ”Understanding is reached only after confrontation.”

Chastity Belt is a rock band consisting of four friends – guitarists Julia Shapiro and Lydia Lund, bassist Annie Truscott, and drummer Gretchen Grimm. They met in a tiny college town in Eastern Washington, but their story begins for real in Seattle, that celebrated home of Macklemore and the Twelfth Man. Following a post-grad summer apart, a handful of shows and enthusiastic responses from the city’s DIY community led them, as it has countless others, into a cramped practice space. They emerged with a debut album, No Regerts, sold it out faster than anyone involved thought possible, and toured America, a country that embraced them with open-ish arms. Now they’re back and the tab is settled, the lights are out, the birds are making noise even though the sun isn’t really up yet: it’s Time to Go Home, their second long-player and first for Hardly Art.

In the outside world, they realized something crucial: they didn’t have to play party songs now that their audience didn’t consist exclusively of inebriated 18-22 year olds, as it did in that college town. Though still built on a foundation of post-post-punk energy, jagged rhythms, and instrumental moves that couldn’t be anyone else’s, the songs they grew into in the months that followed are equal parts street-level takedown and gray-skied melancholy. They embody the sensation of being caught in the center of a moment while floating directly above it; Shapiro’s world spins around her on “On The Floor,” grounded by Grimm and Truscott’s most commanding playing committed to tape. They pay tribute to writer Sheila Heti on “Drone” and John Carpenter with “The Thing,” and deliver a parallel-universe stoner anthem influenced by Electrelane with “Joke.”

Recorded by José Díaz Rohena at the Unknown, a deconsecrated church and former sail factory in Anacortes, and mixed with a cathedral’s worth of reverb by Matthew Simms (guitarist for legendary British post-punks and one-time tour mates Wire), Time to Go Home sees Chastity Belt take the nights out and bad parties of their past to their stretching points, watch the world around them break apart in anticipatory haze, and rebuild it in their own image with stunning clarity before anyone gets hung over.

“They’re funny, and slightly goofy, and gently vulgar, and they play with an appealingly loose, relaxed confidence.” –

“In between pelvic-thrusting sexual innuendo and self-mockery, Chastity Belt filter feminist theory, cultural commentary and general intellectual bad-assery…Chastity Belt isn’t the band 2013 wants—it’s the band 2013 needs.”“The guitars on this record…have a nice ring to them, like Liz Phair’s recordings.”

 

 

It can never be said that La Luz are disinclined to hard work. The tour-happy four-piece returns to the road today with a show in Claremont, California that kicks off a three-month North American tour which includes appearances at the Levitation, Sasquatch!, and Pickathon music festivals. Additionally, Hardly Art is pleased to announce that La Luz’s breakthrough debut EP Damp Face is now available on vinyl for the first time ever. This 10” release an be purchased exclusively through the Hardly Art Webstore, in record shops, or at the band’s merch table on any given stop of their ambitious Spring/Summer tour.

For most, a brush with death would be cause for retreat, reflection, and reluctance, but Seattle band La Luz found something different in it: resilience. Having survived a high-speed highway collision shortly after releasing their 2013 debut LP It’s Alive, La Luz, despite lasting trauma, returned to touring with a frequency and tirelessness that put their peers to shame. Over the past year-and-a-half of performing, the band arrived at a greater awareness of their music’s ability to whip eager crowds into a frenzy. In response, frontwoman Shana Cleveland’s guitar solos took on a more unhinged quality. The bass lines (from newly-installed member Lena Simon) became more lithe and elastic. Stage-dives and crowd-surfing grew to be as indelible a part of the La Luz live experience as their onstage doo-wop-indebted dance moves.

When it came time to record Weirdo Shrine, their second album—released August 7th—the goal was to capture the band’s restless  live energy and commit it to tape. In early 2015, Cleveland and Co. adjourned to a surf shop in San Dimas, California where, with the help of producer/engineer Ty Segall, they realized this vision. Tracking most of the album live in shared quarters, La Luz chose to leave in any happy accidents and spur-of-the-moment flourishes that occurred while recording. Cleveland’s newly fuzzed-up guitar solos—which now incorporated the influence of Japanese Eleki players in addition to the twang of American surf and country—were juxtaposed against the group’s most angelic four-part harmonies to date. The organs of Alice Sandahl and the drumming of Marian Li Pino were granted extra heft and dimension. Thematically, Cleveland channeled Washingtonian poet Richard Brautigan on “You Disappear” and “Oranges,” and sought inspiration from Charles Burns’ Seattle-set graphic novel Black Hole.

The resulting album is a natural evolution of the band’s self-styled “surf noir” sound—a rawer, turbo-charged sequel that charts themes of loneliness, infatuation, obsession and death across eleven tracks, from the opening credits siren song of “Sleep Till They Die” to the widescreen, receding-skyline send-off of “Oranges” and its bittersweet epilogue, “True Love Knows.”

In describing Weirdo Shrine, Segall remarked that it gave him a vision of a “world…burning with colors [he’d] never seen, like mauve that is living.” In “Oranges,” the Brautigan poem which inspired the aforementioned track of the same name, the poet writes of a surreal “orange wind / that glows from your footsteps.” These hue-based allusions are apt: the sound of La Luz is (appropriately) vibrant, and alive with a kaleidoscopic passion. Weirdo Shrine finds them at their most saturated and cinematic.

“La Luz is ready to take on the world.” – MTV Hive

“…a uniquely haunting – albeit occasionally unintentional – spin on the innocent guitar-driven pop of the late ’50s and early ’60s, nudging the sock hop vibes of Dick Dale and the Shirelles into a darker parallel dimension.” – Paper Magazine

“Imagine all of the Shangri-La’s trying, precariously, to balance on top of Link Wray’s surfboard.” – Pitchfork

“One of those bands that hit the ground not running, but sprinting.”

Joe Casey was once why he chose to start his first band with a group of guys roughly ten years his junior. His answer was simple: He needed them, needed this, needed Protomartyr. He didn’t want to end up singing classic rock covers in a carport or dive bar one night a week. At 35, with no musical background and crippling stage fright, he needed friends who were young and hearty enough to want to write and record and practice and tour and be heard as badly as he did then. He’d just lost his father to an unexpected heart attack, and his heartbroken mother to the beginnings of Alzheimer’s shortly thereafter. He’d come to understand, all too intimately, how brutal and finite a life can be. Consider then the urgency with which he joined his bandmates—guitarist Greg Ahee, drummer Alex Leonard, and bassist Scott Davidson, fellow alums of the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy—for the first time, in a basement full of unsuspecting onlookers. Consider the urgency with which they’ve approached everything since—three albums in three years, each more extraordinary and rewarding than the last. This music is inherently, unassumingly high stakes. I can think of no other band that moves me like they do.

October marks the release of The Agent Intellect, their third and finest work to date.  Named after an ancient philosophical questioning of how the mind operates in relation to the self, it’s an elegant and often devastating display of all that makes Protomartyr so vital and singularly visceral an outfit. Over the course of several months, Ahee waded through more than a hundred song fragments until he reached the bottomless melodies of “I Forgive You” and “Clandestine Time”, the inky depths of “Pontiac ’87” and titanic churn of “Why Does It Shake?” Lyrically, Casey is at his most confident and haunting. He humanizes evil on “The Devil in His Youth,” and, amid the charred pop of “Dope Cloud,” he reassures us that nothing—not God, not money—can or will prevent our minds from unraveling until we finally fade away. We are no one and nothing, he claims, without our thoughts. It’s a theme that echoes through the entirety of the record, but never as beautifully as it does on “Ellen.” Named after his mother and written from the perspective of his late father, it’s as romantic a song as you’re likely to hear this or any year, Casey promising to wait for her on the other side, with the memories she’s lost safely in hand.

I remember a story he told me in Detroit. A few months earlier, he’d been driving with his mother as a Protomartyr recording played on the stereo.

“Joe,” she asked him. “Who is this?” “This is us, Mom,” he told her. “That’s me.” “Oh!” she said, “This is very good.”

Protomartyr share a video for their song “Dope Cloud” (from their critically acclaimed album The Agent Intellect, which was directed by self-proclaimed Protomartyr fan Lance Bangs. Bangs, known for directing music videos for the likes of R.E.M., Pavement, Sonic Youth, Nirvana, and Arcade Fire, was simply drawn to the song and made the video on his own time and submitted it to the band. The video shows the demise of one of the last phone booths in the country.

Meanwhile, Protomartyr continues their huge tour of everywhere, which has them basically playing everywhere humanly possible. New Canadian, east coast, and European dates have been added.

TACOCAT – ” Lost Time “

Posted: April 29, 2016 in MUSIC
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There’s something truly special about a band that can at once create some of the catchiest humored punk, while also trying to crush patriarchal norms. Since their debut almost 6 years ago, Seattle’s Tacocat have done and continue to do just this. With their unique brand of Riot-Grrrl infused punk and relaxed attitude, Tacocat has time and time again created records that, although feminist and rebellious to their core, are lighthearted and fun in their approach. In their newest album Lost Time, Tacocat carries over this signature sound once again and builds on it to create their most comprehensive and creative record yet.

Tacocat has always had a knack for playing on pop culture, but they really brought it to the forefront of Lost Time. Poking fun at online trolling, mansplaining, and the infamous “horse girl” stereotype, the band keeps the album amusing; however, these references are only the surface of this record. Beyond this fun, Tacocat touches upon more serious and meaningful ideas. Lost Time is their most thorough record yet, involving the feminist values that are sprinkled through their albums but also themes of work, time, and conformity.

Although there are many songs on Lost Time which act as a break from this concept, many of its songs stay on track with this message of the mundanity of work and that societal pressure of getting a 9 to 5. In “I hate the weekend”, vocalist Emily Nokes discusses the changing scene of Seattle as the silicon valley tech industry moves into the northwest, running amok and disrupting the local vibes. Or, on the last track of the record “Leisure Bees” Nokes begins, “The world is a hive / work hard until you die” and continues this freeing anti-capitalist message into, “If honey is power / who cares, cares about that / sometimes uncomfortable / is better than a dormat. Tacocat explores the modern idea of “living to work”, and how destructive it is on our lives. For living un-authentically and within the confines of society’s expectations is never really living, we’re just losing time.

Yet, even with this deeper message, Lost Time never keeps it too serious. From poking fun at the X-files on “Dana Katherine Scully”, to “I Love Seattle”, a celebration of the city and its impending natural disasters, the record never has a dull moment. Through their use of humor and pure talent, Tacocat creates one of the most fun, colorful, and entertaining records of the year. As a band, they are are continuing to prove themselves as one of the most unique and creative punk bands in the business.