Pod Picks for April 25, 2013

April 24, 2013 

This week we recommend new tracks from a trio of indie rock darlings which you can download (legally, of course) or stream to your iPod, iPad, iPhone or other personal media device.

"The Secret" by The Airborne Toxic Event

This L.A. band wanted to branch out in uncharted directions by learning from those that came before on the upcoming album, “Such Hot Blood.” This roots research seems to have begun in New Jersey and Ireland, because this feels like a cross between Bruce Springsteen and U2. But there’s naturalness to it, more of a drawing from inspirations than a ripping off. It moves along an Edge-like guitar with choirs in the background and spoken bridges. It’s always nice to see young bands creating new music that rings of our familiar loves.

"Fire Walker" by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

This L.A. trio’s lead singer, Robert Been, recently lost his father, who also worked as the band’s sound engineer. Their new album, “Specter at the Feast,” is a reflection of that loss – a range of emotional sounds, from anger to remorse, from darkness to acceptance. This is the album-opener and it starts in a dirge soundscape, before trudging into reflective lyrics, expanding slowly into harmonies and echoes. It does its share of haunting but doesn’t forget to rock along the way.

Entertainment" by Phoenix

It’s all about the repeated refrain in this French band’s first single from the long-anticipated album, “Bankrupt!” released this week. Setting the tone and intent of the song with lyrics such as, “I love, I love, I love.” As the synth-rock explodes, the band’s love affair with ‘80’s pop radio continues and it is lathered with the gushing theatrics from whence it began. The whimsy is there. The danceable beat is there. The bold pronouncement of a lush pop song is there. But the band’s realism is evident even in all the magic when Thomas Mars sings, “Once upon a time would take too long, long, long, long, long, long.”

Derrick Bracey, for Weekly Surge

Derrick Bracey, for Weekly Surge

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