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Electronic





Your Plastic Toys

The term “Poser Pop” shows up sometimes in the words Austin’s future-leaning Your Plastic Toys have written about themselves. Check their online shit, and you’ll see those two words more than once, those two descriptors that aren’t really a genre as such, but more a stance by Your Plastic Toys on their own place in music. In our estimation, the idea is that Your Plastic Tree poses at pop, refusing to make the standard plays while still fully playing a pop game. They are as art-aware as they are pop-aware as they are experimentally on point, and their music is at once a serious approach to pop music making and a bit of a mockery of the pop that’s already out there (in the fine tradition of acts like Talking Heads, The Fugs, or the very contemporary PC Music label out of the UK). A band that views the pop rulebook through half-broke virtual reality goggles.

In that same vein, you’ll also see a lot of abstractions and hyper-modern shit on Your Plastic Toys’ various web profiles, like glitchy saturated pixel-heavy images created by the band itself, short thoughts and quotes decoupled from their source and presented as something to be considered on their own, and not a single clear photo of the band to be found. This digital obfuscation of the band, its image, its motives, its views, evokes a highly modern feeling of existing in a never ending swirl of bit-noise and net fuzz, and it’s exactly what Your Plastic Toys’ sound is like.

On the just-released album OOO, shoegaze-gone-modern swells and currents of sound layer over tight digital beats and the vocals are threaded in and out heavily tweaked and disaffected, sometimes even disdainfully so (to great effect, it must be made clear). Your Plastic Toys comes through like a band seen and heard through a diabolical storm of TV snow on a channel that’s shakily fading in and out of a 1990s tube TV in a busted up apartment with a courtyard pool in the summer. It’s music that rides on that bright burning edge of culture just curling out from the future and into the present, and that throws back a tech-addled vision of what it sees to those still lingering in the cultural past. Take a listen to one of Austin's most forward-thinking bands below, and inject their entire new album here.





Malik

South By is dead, long live South By. Or maybe not, what with the trend this South By being a smaller, more compressed (but still quite corporate) version of itself, with less free shit, fewer unofficial parties and a lot more roadblocks downtown (that last is probably a good thing). Regardless, SX is over, we can all return to being regular levels of alcoholic-ness and taco consumption and maybe actually sleep a little and walk a little less. Speaking of, is it possible to get more and less healthy at the same time? Because all those miles walked have to count as some sort-of workout, but mixed with ounces drunk and pounds of tacos consumed...not so sure.

Now that the SouthBeast is good 'n slain, it also means the online portion of The Deli is back in full swing. We've been goin' hard as nails on the street at South By Southwest this year, and if you were there, you probably saw somewhere between one and five billion of our print issues, and maybe even our exhibits of synthesizers and stompboxes at the Convention Center, or our showcase with magazine cover-gracer and electronic wizard Roger Sellers. If you did pick up a magazine, or came by one of our events, The Deli thanks you and your wonderful, sexy, good-taste-having self very muchly.

To usher in the post-SXSW year (we might as well just call the day after SX the New Year on the Austin Calendar system), we've got somethin' quite good for your ears that's also appropriate to what we saw this year at SX. Quite happily for us at The Deli Austin, SXSW 2015 saw what this writer believes was the most hip-hop of the highest quality that the festival has ever seen. This has been a long time coming, and whatever made it happen (people finally realizing there's an audience for it here? less indie acts shoved into the fest by a smaller corporate presence?), we're goddamn glad that this city is finally coming around in at least some ways to hip-hop. With that in mind, we present Malik, a young homegrown hip-hopper that's just the newest and freshest entry into the already excellent and underrated Austin hip-hop canon.

Malik's dropped three tracks in the last month on Soundcloud, and listening across the three you can get a taste for what this kid can do and what he's got to offer. And what Malik has to offer is smart, attractive hip-hop. From the most recent track, the chronologically-named "March 9th," you know that he's music aware, with that beat based on a sample from classic Outkast ("Vibrate"). You know from track "On My Own" that Malik can toe that Drake-associated pop/hip-hop line, but that Malik falls more firmly on the hip-hop side while hittin' the pop bullseye just as nicely as the Degrassi vet. And you know from all three tracks that the man can spit quite clever and thoughtful, with lines like "I can't lie, you the baddest that I ever seen/But it's sad to say that your tree of life is far from evergreen," on track "Life." It looks like Malik is about to drop more music soon, so get up to speed below with "On My Own" and keep a lookout for more from this top-notch example of the Austin hip-hop world. SXSW 2015 is just a start; there's a hell of a lot more hip-hop to come from this town going forward.

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2015 Treefort Music Festival Preview: Portland Artist Highlight

The fourth annual Treefort Music Festival is proving to be the biggest one yet. Not only is it their first year as a licensed LLC, but this year’s lineup is larger than any previous year with over 400 musical acts, not to mention whole mini-festivals dedicated to comedy, performance art, technology, yoga, skateboarding, beer, and then some.

With massive national musical acts headlining the festival like TV On The Radio, Built To Spill, Foxygen, Yacht, Viet Cong, Of Montreal and !!!, just to name a few, the $139 price of a full-weekend pass is pretty much already god damned steal, and that’s barely 1.5% of the full 2015 lineup. Adding to the glory of this year’s festival, the vast array of amazing Portland bands making the trip to Boise makes Portland one of the most represented cities of the festival. Think of it as a huge rager with all your favorite Portland bands and friends, just in a new, way more fun location.

To help you sort through all of the madness, here is a quick list of some of the Deli Portland’s favorite Portland bands who will be performing at this year’s Treefort Music Festival. Find out exactly where and when they will be playing during Treefort, here





Miss Geo Release "Mouse on the Moon" Single, Announce April 19 EP Release Show

The first day of spring brings with it flowers, warm weather and dreams of summertime beach hangouts--unless you live in New England; then it brings 25 degree temperatures and forecasts of snow for the weekend. Fortunately for all of you readers (within and without the Northeast), I’ve got just the thing to usher in the spring season: a new track from Boston’s beloved electro-pop duo Miss Geo. “Mouse on The Moon” is off their forthcoming EP, Shapes, due out April 19. I’ve been a fan of Miss Geo for awhile, and “Mouse on The Moon” certainly lives-up to my expectations. The track gives off a very open sound, with the listener feeling as though they’re floating in space, watching synth notes pass by on their way to a trendy intergalactic dance party.

If you’re as anxious as I am to hear the rest of the new EP, check out Miss Geo’s EP release show on April 19 at the Middle East Upstairs. The show, presented by Lysten Boston, also features ColorGrave, Casey Desmond and Child Actor.

For more updates about Miss Geo, click here. For more info about the April 19 show, visit the Facebook event page.

-Dan McMahon (@dmcmhn)
Photo credit: Chikage Imai

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Deli Sneak Peak: Squirrel Flower

Singer-Songwriter Ella Williams, under the moniker Squirrel Flower, is releasing a new album Early Winter Songs for Middle America this Saturday 3/21. She was kind enough to give us a little sneak peak of the album, filled with tastefully short and dreamy songs. Early Winter Songs is a clear and deliberate portrait of Williams’ time in Iowa while attending Grinnell College, before returning to Massachusetts. It sounds damn cold there, I’ll just leave it at that. Mostly a solo electric guitar and her voice, Williams mixes in sparse field recordings that allude to the stark setting that inspired these songs. Lyrically, her style is poigniantly honest and authentic, never cluttering the meaning with strained analogies, just honest observations. It’s an impressive debut, and we’re thrilled that she’s back around Boston. Check out the haunting mostly a'capella track “I Won’t Walk Inside,”  it vividly illustrates the setting that inspired these songs.  You can also stream the charming tune "What Was That," or download the album here after 3/21.  - Paul Jordan Talbot
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