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Press Release Roundup: June 24

posted June 28, 2016, 9:21 am by Carlita | Filed Under Music News, Press Release Roundup, Releases | comment Leave a Comment


Music journalists get hit with a steady helping of press releases every day. For the music fan without that kind of sensory overload, a lot of music news can pass by without being seen. Every Friday, we will weed through and compile a list of some of the most intriguing press releases to come across our virtual desk.

III Points

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Miami’s III Points Festival announces new additions to its already stellar lineup for the 4th annual III Points Music, Art & Technology Festival: Machinedrum Live, Blkkmorris, Millionyoung, Poshstronaut, Nuri, Viniloversus, Kodiak Fur, Jport, Parrot Jungle 95, Tony Disco, John Hancock III, Fudakochi, Laura of Miami, DSAN, Baez , NSR , Nii Tei, True Vine, Oxynalia, Oly and Cog Nomen. Machinedrum will be touring his new album live with visuals by Strangeloop. Stangeloop, is a III Points alum, who provided visuals for Flying Lotus’ epic set from III Points 2014. The highly anticipated three-day festival, returning this year to Mana Wynwood, will be held Friday, October 7th through Sunday, October 9. This year features bigger than ever production, complete with five unique stages, equipped with the most innovative sound and lighting systems.

Artists previously announced include LCD Soundsystem, M83, Thievery Corporation, Method Man and Redman, Flying Lotus (DJ set), Dixon plus + more. In addition to the stellar performances, there will be large-scale art and technology installations showcased throughout the venue, as well as the surrounding Wynwood community, to showcase III Points’ commitment to cultivating Miami’s modern, artistic development. Day programs will feature film screenings, tech talks, panel discussions, BBQs, and gallery showcases.

Tickets are available now HERE for $125, or you can enhance your festival experience with limited FORESIGHT PASS for $245-$305. FORESIGHT ticket holders will have access to the two FORESIGHT lounges with craft cocktail bar, seating, air-conditioned private restrooms, charging stations as well as complimentary Becks, water & Red Bull. FORESIGHT passes will also have dedicated entrance into the festival grounds. As a special thank you to all of our loyal PROPHET PASS ticket holders we are automatically upgrading your tickets. If you have already purchased a GA ticket and want to upgrade, we got you. (email us at upgrade@iiipoints.com).

ASCAP 2016 Rhythm and Soul Awards

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On June 23, ASCAP (The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), an organization over 575,000 members strong, celebrated its 29th Annual Rhythm and Soul Awards at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, honoring the best and brightest from the soul, R&B, gospel and hip-hop worlds. Recognizing the achievements of songwriters in each genre, the ASCAP Golden Note Awards especially fulfilled all 90’s hip-hop heads fantasies, being presented by Outkast’s Andre 3000 to A Tribe Called Quest. The loss of Phife was felt deeply, with his award accepted by his mother but we all know his musical legacy lives on forever. Featuring performances by Bibi Bourelly (who also performed at Sunday’s BET Music Awards) and Anthony Brown and Group Therapy, the ceremony also drew the likes of honorees Ne-Yo and Kid Ink, Avery Sunshine and Dana Johnson (who shared a WTF moment with me about performing onstage with Guns’n Roses’ Slash, Derek Trucks, The Rolling Stones’ Ronny Wood and BB King), Erica Campbell (who chatted with me regarding her proud Grammy win moments) and Tank (who I can confirm is 100x finer in person, if that’s possible). Confirming several new projects in the works for attendees and honorees, the rest of 2016 will prove to be a busy year and we’re hyped to hear what’s coming.

Evolve Fest

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Evolve 2016 headliners: Danny Brown, Dub/FX, Keys N Krates, Goldfish, Freestylers, Skratch Bastid, Black Tiger Sex Machine, Featurecast, Calliope Musicals, Chuurch, SkiiTour, J Paul Getto, Slowcoaster, Scientist of Sound, Dub Kartel and so many more! From its humble beginnings in 2000 as an intimate grassroots gathering, to one of the most distinguished Festivals in Canada, Evolve Music and Awareness Festival marks its 17th year with a big change of scenery with the site move from Antigonish, Nova Scotia to beautiful Beersville, New Brunswick.

Producer Jonas Colter says that he and his team are wrapping up the final landscaping and building of unique stage structures at the new 500 acre organic farm location. “Moving to Beersville is really exciting,” he says, “We’re aiming to do more than simply recreate the unique festival experience we developed over the many years in Antigonish, we plan to make it bigger and better than ever.”

The new site located approx 35 minutes from Moncton, New Brunswick is expected to create a $1.2 million economic impact to the Kent County area as approximately 3,000+ attendees plus a large volunteer, security and medical staff will be spending between 2 and 5 days in the area. According to a 2010 Nova Scotia report the overall economic impact of the Evolve Festival is estimated to be approximately $1.8 million to the province with similar projections expected for New Brunswick.

With the release of the most ambitious lineup yet, Evolve presents a stunning array of sound from worldbeat, hiphop, and electronica, to folk and roots-rock. Evolve offers music fans everything from their annual favourites to mind-blowing new discoveries. It will feature some of the most exciting acts representing a wide range of musical styles from Canada and around the world, while staying true to its mandate of supporting Eastern Canadian artists.

Detroit’s acclaimed hip-hop star Danny Brown, hot off the release of a new single “When It Rain,” was recently named “Best New Track” by Pitchfork, is ready to raise the bar at the new Evolve mainstage. Australian beatboxer & looping artist Dub FX makes his triumphant return, on the cusp of the release of his new album “Thinking Clear.” and world tour. Toronto based electronic ‘trap’ band Keys N Krates, now a Evolve mainstay, continue to play at some of the world’s largest Music Festivals including Bonaroo and just reached an impressive million plays on SoundCloud.of their new Midnite Mass EP.The highlight of last years’ fest, Austin Texas’ Calliope Musicals who returns with their own unique brand of psychedelic party folk,Electronic outfits Goldfish (South Africa) , Black Tiger Sex Machine (Montreal), Skii Tour (Whister,) and Chuurch (Calgary) gear up to party for the very first time. Evolve veterans Skartch Bastid, Slowcoaster, Scientist of Sound, and Dub Kartel will also be there to keep the festival family vibe alive and strong, all weekend long.

To get tix, click HERE!

Yellowcard

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“When saying farewell, it is hard to know where to start, especially when there are so many reasons not to say it, but the time has come to share this news,” said YELLOWCARD in a unified statement. “After countless discussions and months of thought, we have decided that it is time for Yellowcard to come to an end. This will be our last album and our final world tour.”

With this statement, YELLOWCARD have announced that the band will be releasing their final self-titled album on September 30, 2016 on Hopeless Records and embark on “The Final World Tour”, kicking off on October 6 in San Antonio, TX. “We wanted to have the chance to share our farewell with as many fans around the world as we could, and now is the right time to do just that.”

YELLOWCARD was a very personal journey for the band that was self-produced by Ryan Key and guitarist Ryan Mendez with long-time ally and close friend Neal Avron close by as Executive Producer. “The motivation behind this was to make sure these songs came from a place that was deeply rooted in us,” they explain about taking the reins and crafting it from top to bottom. “We wanted to push ourselves to create a lasting finale for this incredible story on our own. It is also why we chose to self-title the album. We were lucky to still have our friend and mentor, Neal Avron, on board as Executive Producer. We’ve made one of the strongest records of our career and a fitting final creative piece.”
YELLOWCARD album art
Click for hi-res

Pre-orders for YELLOWCARD begin today at www.yellowcardrock.com which includes an instant download of the opening track “Rest in Peace”. Pre-sale VIP packages for the tour are also available now. Public on sale will begin June 28th.

As the band spends their summer on the Vans Warped Tour before launching into their final stretch, they are especially appreciative to the fans that have been there every step of the way. “We will be forever grateful to Yellowcard fans all over the world for the opportunities you have given us. We have played shows for nearly two decades on six continents and had the chance to keep recording the music we love year after year. While it is with sadness that we say goodbye, it is with gratitude and amazement that we look back on a career we can be proud of, and were so very lucky to have had.”

YELLOWCARD will be released on September 30, 2016 via Hopeless Records. Yellowcard is Ryan Key (vocals, guitars), Sean Mackin (violins), Ryan Mendez (guitar), and Josh Portman (bass).

Photo Credit: Joe Brady

Taking Back Sunday

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“Throughout each song on the record, there are a lot of references to water,”TAKING BACK SUNDAY vocalist Adam Lazzara tells Entertainment Weekly who broke the news about their seventh studio album TIDAL WAVE, set for release on September 16, 2016 via Hopeless Records . The song from which the album takes its name is released today and is available as an instant grat with the pre-order. Its video – a pastiche of live performance footage of the song from this Summer’s ongoing Taste of Chaos tour, is released today.

“I’m very excited for people to hear it,” guitarist John Nolan told hometown newspaper New York Newsday. “I think it’s going to be a surprise to some people. We’re all extremely excited about what we’ve done. It’s the culmination of things we’ve tried over the past two records. I think it’s the strongest record we’ve done since getting back together. We’ve freed ourselves up to go in new directions.”

The classic punk aesthetic of the title track thrusts Taking Back Sunday into a different world of songwriters. Lazzara told Entertainment Weekly, “With our first records, we were writing from the perspective of 17, 18-year-old kids and now it’s like, as you grow old, the blinders get pulled back and you have a different way of looking at the world. There’s more of an Americana feel. But we realize anything we do is going to sound like Taking Back Sunday.”

Released today in video form here http://smarturl.it/TidalWaveVideo, “Tidal Wave” will be included as an instant grat track with the pre-order here (http://smarturl.it/TidalWaveiTunes). Physical and vinyl pre-orders can be purchased here (http://smarturl.it/tbspreorder). The song can also be heard on Spotify (http://tinyurl.com/tbs-spotify).

TIDAL WAVE Track listing

1. Death Wolf
2. Tidal Wave
3. You Can’t Look Back
4. Fences
5. All Excess
6. I Felt It Too
7. Call Come Running
8. Holy Water
9. In The Middle Of It All
10. We Don’t Go In There
11. Homecoming
12. I’ll Find A Way To Make It What You Want

Their first new album since Happiness Is in 2014, Tidal Wave is a forceful and fluidly cohesive tsunami of a record. Kicking off with “Death Wolf” whose one-minute atmospheric intro explodes at breakneck speed fueled by Mark O’Connell’s muscular drumming, the album pushes the band’s musical boundaries, challenging them into experimenting with different textures and sounds while remaining very true to their trademark sound. From the anthemic “You Can’t Look Back” to the balladic “I Felt It Too” to the mid-tempo closer “I’ll Find A Way to Make It What You Want”, Tidal Wave is a genuine evolution for the platinum-selling band. “I couldn’t put any more of myself into these new songs and we’ve grown as musicians,” Lazzara says about how they’ve continued to innovate and expand with each progressive record.

Currently halfway through the 37-city Taste of Chaos tour with Dashboard Confessional, Saosin, The Early November (with a rotating cast of guests like Motion City Soundtrack and Saves The Day among others), Taking Back Sunday formed on Long Island in 1999, and has sold millions of records, landed a pair of Top Five Billboard chart positions and evolved from a youthful punk outfit to a vigorous and inventive pack of seasoned musicians.

Taste of Chaos
feat. Taking Back Sunday
with Dashboard Confessional, Saosin, The Early November

Jun 29 The Crossroads Kansas City, MO
Jun 30 Criterion Theater Oklahoma City, OK
Jul 01 South Side Ballroom Dallas, TX
Jul 02 Revention Music Center Houston, TX
Jul 03 Cedar Park Center Cedar Park, TX
Jul 05 Sumtur Amphitheater Papillion, NE
Jul 06 Red Rocks Amphitheatre Morrison, CO
Jul 07 The Great Salt Air Magna, UT
Jul 08 Revolution Event Center Garden City, ID
Jul 09 Xfinity Arena Everett, WA
Jul 10 Cuthbert Amphitheater Eugene, OR
Jul 12 Concord Pavilion Concord, CA
Jul 13 Rotary Amphitheater Fresno, CA
Jul 14 Comerica Theatre Phoenix, AZ
Jul 15 The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas, NV
Jul 16 San Manuel Amphitheater San Bernardino, CA

Photo Credit: Greg Hunter

Emily King

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Hailing from the Lower East Side, Emily King is a GRAMMY® nominated artist with pop, indie and soul influences that she hones with carefully crafted compositions. On July 8th she will release the deluxe edition of her critically acclaimed album The Switch with four new, exciting tracks. Pre-order the album HERE

King’s first new song ‘BYIMM’ (aka ‘By You I Mean Me’) is a very personal track that serves as the perfect vehicle for her polished, lush vocals. Courtesy of Stereogum, you can listen + share it HERE.

“It seemed like the person I was with had decided to stop noticing the good things about our relationship,” King said when explaining the inspiration for the song. “I felt like I had to constantly remind them of what I was bringing to the table. I decided to rent a cabin upstate for us to get away from the city and be in nature. Somehow we got in an argument on the first day. So while we were giving each other the silent treatment, I set up a microphone and laptop and recorded the idea straight away. The song came out so naturally, it was very therapeutic singing those lines.”

King has previously had the pleasure of touring with Maroon 5, Emeli Sande, John Legend and will begin a summer tour on July 7th that includes some dates with Alabama Shakes. Head below to check out all of the upcoming dates.

TOUR DATES

7/7 – Atlanta, GA – The Loft

7/8 – Charlotte, NC – Visulite

7/9 – Washington DC – 9:30 Club

7/11 – Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer

7/14 – New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom

7/15 – Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg

7/16 – Boston, MA – Brighton Music

7/18 – Detroit, MI – The Shelter

7/19 – Chicago, IL – Civic Opera House w/ Alabama Shakes

7/20 – Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom w/ Alabama Shakes

7/21 – Minneapolis, MN – Cedar Cultural Center

7/23 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall

7/25 – Austin, TX – The Parish

7/26 – Houston, TX – Studio @ Warehouse Live

7/27 – Dallas, TX – Trees

7/29 – Phoenix, AZ – The Crescent

7/30 – Las Vegas, NV – Sayer’s Club

8/1 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues

8/2 – Los Angeles, CA – El Rey

8/3 – San Francisco, CA – The Chapel

8/5 – Portland, OR – Doug Fir

8/6 – Seattle, WA – Tractor

Pierce The Veil

LEFT TO RIGHT:  Mike Fuentes, Vic Fuentes, Tony Perry, Jaime Preciado

LEFT TO RIGHT: Mike Fuentes, Vic Fuentes, Tony Perry, Jaime Preciado

Don’t miss Pierce The Veil live from Red Bull’s Soundspace on Tuesday at 1 PM PST!

Live stream it HERE!

PALO!

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Afro-Cuban Funk band PALO! will release their third album, Yo Quiero Guarachar on Friday, June 24. Produced by the group’s leader Steve Roitstein (Celia Cruz, Willy Chirino, Tito Puente, Oscar d’ Leon, Cheo Feliciano, Ricardo Montaner), the album contains ten previously unreleased songs, and features standout guest performances by Descemer Bueno, Aymee Nuviola, Pedrito Martinez and Roman Diaz.

Yo Quiero Guarachar (I Wanna Have A Blast) follows up the band’s Grammy- and Latin Grammy-nominated CD PALO! Live. This album release event will be held at 11:45 PM on Friday, June 24, 2016 at the legendary Miami club Hoy Como Ayer, the same venue where PALO! played their first show in 2003. “We’re excited to share this new music with our friends and fans.” said Steve Roitstein. “This album perfectly represents PALO!; we’re very proud of it.”

PALO! is emerging as one of the hottest bands in tropical music. The album release anticipates the group’s upcoming European tour in July; they will be performing in Paris, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, and as the “Sponsor” band at France’s prestigious Tempo Latino Festival. The five-piece group has enjoyed recent sold-out shows and festivals in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Boston, Tampa, Canada, Louisville, and of course, their hometown, Miami.

PALO! is comprised of Latin Grammy-nominated vocalist Leslie Cartaya, Latin Grammy-winning saxophonist Dr. Ed Calle; leader/pianist Steve Roitstein, and virtuoso Cuban percussionists Philbert Armenteros and Raymer Olalde. Together they the bring the passion and energy of Afro-Cuban music combined with funk and jazz that make PALO! one of today’s most innovative groups.

Dawn Richard

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D∆WN serves up another exciting visual treat with her new 2D companion video to her recent virtual reality video for “Not Above That,” which she released last week. The new video shares the storyline behind the VR video, in which D∆WN is transported through her third eye from our world to other dimensions and puts on a beautiful intergalactic performance. The track is from her upcoming ‘RED*emp*tion’ album out this Fall.

Saga Whiteblack

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Saga Whiteblack, SESAC Latina 2016 Producer of the Year, continues riding high with the success of “Hasta El Amanecer.” He produced this song, which was written and performed by Nicky Jam. Both artists are affiliated with SESAC Latina, the most progressive performing-rights organization in the industry.

“Hasta El Amanecer” has spent 13 weeks at #1 on Billboard magazine’s Hot Latin Songs chart, as of the June 25-July 1 issue. Furthermore, it’s enjoying its ninth week at #1 on Latin Streaming Songs and its eighth week at the pole position on Latin Rhythm Digital Songs, as of the July 2-8, 2016, issue.

The creative team of Nicky Jam and Saga Whiteblack also received the Song of the Year trophy at the 2016 SESAC Latina Music Awards for “El Perdón.” This song, which features Enrique Iglesias, achieved historic success with a 30-week run at #1 on the Billboard Hot Latin Songs chart.

Mayberry

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Alternative pop-rock band Mayberry recently announced the release of their forthcoming EP, Beautiful Mess, set for 7/22/16. The band dropped the EP’s first single, “Wildfire” earlier this month and fans have been anticipating hearing more from the rising quartet. Today, Mayberry is thrilled to partner with TWIST Magazine to exclusively premiere the official music video for “Say What You Want From Me,” a powerful, anthemic pop track off Beautiful Mess. “Say What You Want From Me” was written by frontman Esteban Rodriguez for those who have experienced heartbreak. With vulnerable vocals, and R&B influence mixed with guitar, synth, & group chorus chants, the song reflects the emotionally drained feeling after a breakup when you ask yourself what went wrong, wishing to go back in time and fix what’s now gone.

Hailing from small-town Edinburgh, TX, Mayberry is an alternative pop/rock band consisting of members Esteban Rodriguez (Vocals), Hector Rodriguez (Bass), Brayden Dillard (Drums), and Andrew Vela (Guitar). Mayberry radiates with infectious pop hooks and powerful vocals ready for Top-40 radio. After releasing their debut EP All I Need(2012), produced by Geoff Rockwell (Artist vs. Poet, Forever the Sickest Kids), the band made waves with their 3-song EP Just A Dream(2014), which was produced and co-written by John Keefe and Morgan Dorr of Boys Like Girls. Noting their veteran expertise and sensibility for polished pop melodies, Mayberry continued to work alongside the duo, releasing a follow-up single in 2015 “Please Please.” Keefe and Dorr also produced Mayberry’s forthcoming EP, Beautiful Mess[out 7/22/16]. Mayberry has shared the stage with powerhouse acts such as Plain White T’s, Fifth Harmony, Fall Out Boy, Rixton, and more. After landing a publishing deal with Position Music in LA, their single “Heartbeat” made its television debut in a commercial for NBC’s Running Wild With Bear Grylls. Mayberry feels like a band poised for mainstream success, with over 45,000 avid Twitter followers and fans all over the globe making this band one to watch.

Racing Glaciers

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RACING GLACIERS RELEASE NEW SINGLE ‘SAMADHI (SO FAR AWAY)’ AHEAD OF DEBUT ALBUM

Racing Glaciers return with a stellar new single ‘Samadhi (So Far Away)’, out this June, and ahead of their debut album release through Killing Moon this August.

With well over 2 million Soundcloud plays on just their first four tracks, their track ‘First Light’ featured on the Transformers 4: Age of Extinction movie and won the band support from BBC Radio 1 and BBC 6Music DJ’s including Annie Mac, Huw Stephens, Greg James, Fearne Cotton and Steve Lamacq.

The band have also performed at the BBC Radio 1 Big Weekend, Liverpool Sound City, The Great Escape Festival, Secret Garden Party, London Calling in Amsterdam, Berlin Music Week, Y Not Festival, Wakestock and Beacons, as well as a 35-date UK tour late last year.

Racing Glaciers will release this new single ‘Samadhi (So Far Away)’ this June, the first exciting glimmer of what is to come from their debut album release ‘Caught In The Strange’ this August, and a track that pulls together all that is great about the 5-piece from Macclesfield, as gloriously cinematic, inventive and essential as we need right now.

Racing Glaciers release their debut album ‘Caught In The Strange’ on August 5th 2016 through Killing Moon.

GUTS

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How did Guts, a go-it-alone producer who had only rarely called on other musicians for help since his time with Alliance Ethnik, become the frontman of a live band as he started work on his new album? To understand how this came about, we need to rewind through the last two years of his life to his previous album, Hip Hop After All, and the tour of the same name.

As his tour ate up the miles around France and Europe, spending many hours on stage, in vans, on planes and backstage, Guts came up with the idea of channelling the energy and unity forged by the tour into a recording, an album that would pool the creative talents of the different musicians, an album with a single voice – the band’s.

Florian Pellissier’s keyboards, Greg F.’s guitar, Leron Thomas’s trumpet and mike, the voices of Von Pea, Don Will and Lorine Chia, Kenny Ruby’s bass and later Tibo Brandalise’s drums all flowed into a project where each was a key piece of a musical jigsaw puzzle. The foundations were some fairly simple outlines that were then refined during intense studio sessions – refined, honed and pushed into territory they never imagined they would explore. The only rule was that there were no limits for anyone, starting with Guts himself, who decided to reverse the proportions of 20% live and 80% samples and machines that had defined his musical path up to that point.

Funk, soul, rap, Cuban, African and Russian sounds – styles that had previously mixed only as five-second samples, infiltrated into the beats and rhythms, were now stirred and shaken by a band playing real instruments. Keyboards were allowed to wander from their acoustic comfort zone and become charged with electricity, and guitars produced precise, incisive rhythms. A trumpet could count on back-up from a sax and a trombone to form an imposing array of brass; mikes cautiously caress as well as kicking out at the rules; a bass purrs in the background or sends a ripple through the whole score like a lead dancer; at a nod, drums go from pounding out a beat to rolling a groove.

Everyone pulls in the same direction to create an album where musical styles form criss-crossing hybrid blends or else strike sumptuous poses in their original guise. Wild jazz appears side by side with Japanese-sounding strings, spacy rock gazes down from the stratosphere at pure premium hip hop and its dominant beats, electro funk slugs it out with afro on the dancefloor, while urban Western brass throws down the gauntlet to post-apocalyptic synthesizers that would set John Carpenter’s moustache aquiver.

Dense, rich and eclectic, ETERNAL is above all an ambitious record, an album with no restrictions on form or length, every track a door into a different universe from the one before.

Lucy Dacus

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Richmond, VA-based songwriter Lucy Dacus is the latest addition to the renowned Matador Records roster. The 21-year-old’s critically acclaimed debut album, No Burden, which was released earlier this year, is out now digitally, with a re-pressing of CD and LP formats coming on September 9th.

For a behind-the-scenes look at Lucy’s life on the road, which includes recent headlining shows, SXSW, and dates with Daughter, Houndmouth, and Julien Baker, a new video set to “I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore” can be viewed HERE. The full list of upcoming tour dates (including shows with The Decemberists, Frightened Rabbit, and Car Seat Headrest) can be found below, along with Lucy’s Maura Johnston-penned bio.

Lucy Dacus’s No Burden is full of surprises—sharp lyrical observations, playful turns of musical phrase, hooks that’ll embed themselves in your frontal lobe for days. But the most surprising thing about this album might be the fact that it’s a debut; it has a keen sense of self about it, and it nearly glows from the self-possession held by the woman at its core.

The 21-year-old Dacus grew up in Richmond; she was adopted at a young age, an experience that informed her curious, openhearted songwriting. “When my parents were explaining what adoption was—which was very early on in my childhood—they always said that my birthmother thought I was worthwhile even though she couldn’t be my mom,” she says. “And so from essentially infancy, I was taught that life was innately worthwhile because a bunch of people had worked together to set me up with one.”

Dacus started playing around Richmond while in college, opening for local acts and eventually meeting Jacob Blizard, a guitarist who invited her to make a record for a college project of his. No Burden, which originally came out in February on the Richmond label EggHunt Records, opens with the forthright, almost brutally honest “I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore,” the last song Dacus wrote before the album’s day-long recording session at Starstruck Studios in Nashville. Dacus delivers scalpel-sharp observations about resisting pigeonholing over chunky guitars, ticking off ideals of femininity and youth until the track’s not-quite-resolution.

These themes extend to the lyrics of songs like “Strange Torpedo,” a whirling portrait of a friend whose “bunch of bad habits” who, Dacus sings, has “been falling for so long… and hasn’t] hit anything solid yet.” “I’ve been that friend watching a loved one do what they know is bad for them and not understanding why,” says Dacus. The song offers a simple message: “I love you, why don’t you love you? You’re the one in your body so you get to choose what to do with it, but if I were you I’d treat me differently.”

The rest of No Burden, which was produced by Collin Pastore, puts Dacus’s voice center stage, allowing the glinting poetry of her lyrics to shine even more brightly. “Trust,” which Dacus wrote in late 2013, showcases her alone with her guitar, her faint vibrato floating over strummed chords as she sings of self-redemption. And the diptych “Dream State…” and “…Familiar Place,” which revolve around Dacus repeating “Without you, I am surely the last of our kind/ Without you, I am surely the last of my kind,” capture disappointment and loss in a jaw-dropping way; the music trembles around her while her voice stays steady, anticipating whatever might come next.

No Burden is a forthright, disarmingly catchy statement. And while it’s a sterling debut, it only hints at the potential possessed by this passionate, thoughtful young woman.

Photo Credit: Dusdin Condren

Mikey Erg

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Stepping out from his past time spent with pop-punk legends The Ergs! and countless gigs with other bands, Mikey Erg is releasing his first solo effort via Don Giovanni Records on June 24.LA, don’t miss Mikey Erg at The Troubadour on July 16th and ALSO Bar in Fullerton with The Falcom, The Copyrights and Sam Russo on July 14th!

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