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Monday, March 10, 2014

Music Monday! The Estranged, Hillstomp, Cars & Trains, and More

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Mon, Mar 10, 2014 at 2:35 PM


The Estranged traffics in taut post-punk that bears little elements of the band that it evolved from, its crusty predecessor Remains of the Day, but that willful ignorance of stylistic boundaries has enabled the Portland band to make some adventurous, gripping music in the past few years. Their third album, the self-titled The Estranged, saw an overseas release on Bremen-based label Sabotage Records back in January, but now the album will be available from the band's Portland home, local label Dirtnap, on March 18. Here's the album's second track, "Fatalist Flaw," a wiry, nervy tune with some full-bloom romanticism in evidence as well.


Hillstomp's new album is named Portland, Ore, perhaps a deliberate callback to the days before ZIP Codes. (Remember Fla., Calif., and N. Dak.?) It's the first album from the duo after a recent hiatus, and here's "Don't Come Down," a minor-key banjo creeper in a 1-4-5 blues progression that reigns in some of the raucousness of Hillstomp's live show. Portland, Ore comes out April 15 on Fluff and Gravy Records, but Hillstomp will play two nights at the Doug Fir later this week—Friday, March 14 and Saturday, March 15—during which they'll premier the new album.


Cars & Trains just released an instrumental single called "History of the Night," and it finds an unlikely but successful marriage between an autoharp and a big hiphop beat. There are two other tracks on the single, which is being offered as a free download on Bandcamp. Meanwhile, Tom Filepp, the man behind Cars & Trains, is also re-releasing C&T's 2007 album Rusty String on colored vinyl with special artwork this June—more info on that here.

More Music Monday after the jump!


Violent Psalms' press bio mentions bands like Sebadoh, Centro-matic, and Pedro the Lion, and sure enough, tiny flakes of each of those can be heard in the band's debut single, the pained, passionate "Sleeping Pills." The Portland band recorded much of their upcoming debut album Slow to Speak at Jackpot! Studio with Kendra Lynn, and here are the first fruits from it. A mud-fuzz guitar leads an unkempt arrangement that builds slowly, drawing its own steady momentum. Violent Psalms play tomorrow night (Tuesday, March 11) at the White Eagle, and also on Friday, March 14, at the Firkin Tavern with Fruit of the Legion of Loom and Pinehurst Kids.


Shouter are playing a release show for their 7-inch EP Brentwood-Darlington Invitational this Wednesday night (March 12) at East End, and here's the opening track, "Halt and Catch Fire," it's a speedy punk number given a slight ska flair by way of some horns. The three-piece features two members who were in the Rarities, and this is their second release, following 2011's Presents Three. Check 'em out Wednesday at East End, when they'll be joined by Seattle's Agatha and Portland's the Mishaps.


We'll end today with an older track from Horse Feathers, their 2010 cover of Nirvana's "Drain You" that was originally released as a single on Kill Rock Stars. The track will appear on their upcoming four-cassette box set KRS Archives, Volume 1, which comes out April 22 and includes all their Kill Rock Stars albums in cassette format, plus a bonus tape of rare tracks. 2014 marks the 10-year anniversary of the Portland based chamber folk group, and they're going on tour and taking requests via Facebook.

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