Pairs Well With…Sleigh Bells, Nine Inch Nails, Beach House
There’s a fusion element with Roman Remains’ music that somehow allows the electro-pop duo to stand out as wholly unique on a 2,000-plus artist roster. While there’s a baseline of dream pop that is so familiar in the electronic pop/rock soundsphere, it’s the industrial rhythms and harmonies that propel Roman Remains forward. It’s utterly demanding and intelligently placed, not overpowering yet it feels like the force of a thousand drums. Even the softer numbers – “Sweet Dreaming” and “True Nature” – have their moments of abrupt intensity. Roman Remains is an offshoot of UK rock band The Duke Spirit (Liela Moss and Toby Butler), but this might turn into a primary focus if their expected full-length this year follows in the epic trail of “This Stone Is Starting To Bleed”.
Roadkill Ghost Choir (9) - This five-track introduction is pretty revelatory as the band melds Americana, indie rock and spaced out pop into a really engaging sound. With the exception of the driving rock piece “Drifter”, Roadkill Ghost Choir keep the pace relatively slow, sometimes borderline hypnotic.
Roman Remains (9) – While there’s a baseline of dream pop that is so familiar in the electronic pop/rock soundsphere, it’s the industrial rhythms and harmonies that propel Roman Remains forward. It’s utterly demanding and intelligently placed, not overpowering yet it feels like the force of a thousand drums.
Rich Aucoin (8) - I made it a point to get to gig at SXSW 2012 and within minutes, I was frolicking under a gigantic parachute with everyone in the room. Musically, Aucoin’s songs are joyful, repeating lyrics of joy and empowerment with the ultimate goal of endured happiness.
The Ridges (6) – The Ridges are an orchestral folk band, focused more on the delicate sides of the Americana genre than expected big-time anthems. Their 2011 self-titled EP (The Ridges’ sole release to date) is a pretty, dramatic listen, focused on creating a timeless nature with their far-reaching themes.
Ringo Deathstarr (6) – Noise, alt rock and psychedelic canvases are pushed and pulled on Ringo Deathstarr’s latest, Gods Dream. Check single “Flower Power” and know that these guys will follow on their reputation of ripping SXSW a new one year after year.
Robbie Fulks (6) – The sound of Robbie Fulks is what you think of when the words Americana and country bridge together. The veteran singer-songwriter is passionately authentic, even better his best record is his latest – 2013’s acoustic Gone Away Backward.