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Beauty Pill unveils new video + releases new LP after 11 years

Beauty Pill's new album "Beauty Pill Describes Things As They Are" was released last Tuesday, April 21 via Butterscotch Records. The album comes 11 years after the band's last release and after band leader Chad Clark survived a rare and typically fatal heart disease. It's a deeply personal political album that combines the experimental side of indie rock with wholly new layers of electronics, beats and samples. Check oiut the video for "Dog with Rabbit in Mouth Unharmed."

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Mittenfields release new album! Show April 30th! Video!

DC's Mittenfields are FINALLY set to release their long awaited full length Optimists. I was blessed with an early listen and was beyond pleased with maturity and variety of the songwriting and production. Fans of Mittenfields wont be surprised if I say there's a lot of 80's-90's indie-rock sound in it, but what they might not be expecting is all the places the album goes in and around the genre.

Just in the second song, "We've Become Numbers," there's a bass groove with the "angular" guitars, which fuse into bright layered guitars/pedals (that remind one that U2 was pretty cool in the beginning), ultimately crashing into an intense surf-guitar covered shoegaze drone. All complementary sounds in a coherent song. The further into the album one goes, the more variety one hears, both within and across songs. Fuzzy and clean, mathy stuff, poppy stuff, gentle songsmithing, hard rocking. All tight, cool shit. And Dave Mann's voice is pretty good too.

Check out lead single/video "Optimists" below, and go to the record release show an April 30th at Black Cat Mainstage, featuring a stellar lineup (including Greenland, Magnetar Flares, and Night Streets).  --Natan Press

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Alex Vans' "Velocirapture"

It's been a few years since the release of Alex Vans' first full length DJ Booth. It's a solid and catchy record, full of promise. After recording, Alex formed his backup band The Hide Away, and they've played some 200 shows. Recently, most of those shows have been tributes to Beck, and fans (including myself) were starting to wonder when Alex was gonna fulfill the promise of the first album. I'm happy to say the wait is over.

Vans and The Hide Away are dropping their first new single since DJ Booth, "Velocirapture" on May 5th. It's a bright rocker, exceeding the expectations of earlier work. It's at least as catchy, with a deeper, more formed and practiced sound. Somewhere between Tom Petty and Beck, Alex has found his home. I, for one, believe in the Raptor.

You can catch Alex and The Hide Away at Iota May 9th for a Beck tribute set (part of a huge 1996 showcase featuring tributes to Ras Kass, Weezer, The Cranberries, Fiona Apple and Tori Amos), before The "Velocirapture" Single Release Party, on May 16th at Hill Country Barbecue (w/ Short Lives). --Natan Press


Sinister Haze prep new EP, tour.

 Richmond's metal scene is already legend, and it just keeps gettiing better. Case in point: Sinister Haze. The members have been around the scene for quite some time, but Sinister Haze itself is relatively young, having dropped their first demo in 2013. It promised something for old and new fans of metal alike, digging deep into classic heavy psychedelia to mix with the Doom. They've kept us waiting for more, and they're finally releasing an EP, Betrayed By Time, through Heavy Stab Records on vinyl next month you can pre-order it now at the link). 


Check out the track below, "Change My Ways," premiered on Noisey, and catch them on their national tour, starting Tuesday April 28th at Strange Matter in Richmond.   

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Expert Alterations change cassette EP to 12", tour.

In early 2014, Expert Alterations self-released a self-titled cassette EP. Now they've teamed up with Slumberland Records for a limited edition vinyl release. It's as solid a collection of contemporary post-punk as you can hope to hear. It's got jangle and drone, energetic guitars and lackadaisical vocals. The low-fi sound and vocal delivery are reminiscent of Sebadoh, but the songs are quick, their structure and the rhythm section, alternately bouncy and insistent, channel punk like Minutemen and Wire. They jam econo, and the EP is over much too fast, prompting repeated listens.  

You can pre-order now for a June 1st release. In the meantime, Expert Alterations are going on a short tour, starting April 18th at Baltimore Soundstage (where they will be opening for The Buzzcocks--Yes!). You can also catch them April 21st at Metro Gallery (w/ Peach Kelli Pop--also Yes!--along with Baltimore's Boy Spit and Moist--mmmmm), before they head to the boroughs of NY for some Fests.  --Natan Press

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