Author Archives: Hometown Sounds

Sneaks – X.T.Y.

It’s finally Friday and we’ve got a beautiful fall weekend ahead. What’s on your agenda? Riding BMX bikes with the devil? That’s what artist Eva Moolchan is all about in this new video for “X.T.Y.”, a sinister post-punk groover by her musical moniker Sneaks pulled from both last year’s self-titled cassette release on Sister Polygon Records and this year’s expanded version Gymnastics on Parisian label Danger Records. The vintage 90s VHS style is a signature of director Ryan Florig and suits both the song and the devilish bike tricks.


Br’er – Masking

There’s a strong association with The Downward Spiral-era Nine Inch Nails in Br’er‘s new video for “Masking”, their brand new album‘s title track. Industrial beats and filtered vocals accompany this dizzying video with twisted faces and a loose story about abduction and forced facial shaving with a razor and snowballs that’s kinda sorta NSFW. Ben Schurr leads the noise pop ensemble, which currently includes Erik Sleight of Stronger Sex and videographer/drummer Ben Usie, also of Pree. Celebrate the release of Br’er’s new album and see their intense live show tonight at the Pinch!


Rachel Levitin – Nearly Broken

Fans of singer-songwriter Rachel Levitin have endured a lengthy wait for her debut EP Nearly Broken, but the wait is finally over! Produced by Dave Mallen of Arlington’s Innovation Station Music, the 5 song EP is out today in iTunes and marks a big achievement for Levitin. The title track, and today’s DC music video, “Nearly Broken” was inspired by the life-saving heart transplant Levitin’s father received in 1999. After his passing some time later, Levitin channeled her emotions to songwriting, and the songs on Nearly Broken show a remarkable quality of honesty and depth.


Podcast for October 8th, 2015


Paul & Tony are pretty excited about the autumn weather, presenting a Fancy Fall Spectacular edition of the Hometown Sounds podcast. Tony talks about troll texting Justin Trawick and Paul finally gets to music festival. And of course the hot new DC jams for the season!

Ace Cosgrove – Bad Guy [Baby Need Food]
Bells & Hunters – Bruises [Modern Witch’s Songbook Vol I: Fairy Tales]
Bless – Drop Out [Bless Tape]
Nox – It’s No Use [Nox]
Lackluster – Running Backwards [Demo]
Aerialist – Hydra [Charon / Hydra]

Right-click to Download

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Subscribe to the Hometown Sounds podcast in the iTunes Store or your favorite podcast app! (and tell a friend too!)

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The Very Small – The Worst Form Of Violence

This massive hurricane looks like it’s going to miss DC this weekend, which is great news for fans of live music shows and bad news for those who like wet excuses to stay in and “Netflix & chill” or whatever. Cap off this first October weekend with a trip to DC9 to celebrate the newest music video from rock band The Very Small. Robin Smith, Aaron Mann and Zack Be roped in esteemed music video director Nigel Lyons to create visuals for “The Worst Form Of Violence”, a brand new single release from their 2014 album Zoomed Way Out. The video combines vibrant colors that accompany the melodic powerpop riffs with haunting images of poverty and strife to eludicate the lyrics. Catch them anchor an all-DC music lineup this Sunday night with The Escape Artist and Boon.

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The Cornel West Theory – We Almost Lost Philadelphia

We’ve waited four years to get pummeled with more delicious truth bombs from Tim Hicks’s scorching hip-hop crew The Cornel West Theory. The final product is worth the wait as Coming From The Bottom dropped last week, delivering a full 20 tracks worth of deft production and lyrics, featuring collaborations with Ursula Rucker, Queen Helene of Les Nubians and DC’s own Ian Svenonious. Watch the first music video from this release, “We Almost Lost Philadelphia” and head to their Bandcamp to grab this album for absolutely free.


RDGLDGRN – Won’t Last

Hip-hop infused rock band RDGLDGRN are pretty badass cool in the many music videos we’ve seen from them to date, but their newest goes in a very different direction. The slower, groove-laden single “Won’t Last” soundtracks this video tribute to The Goonies, the most formative movie for anyone growing up in the 80s. While the colorful gents tour Germany in October, their second full length album drops October 9th, and you won’t even have to do the truffle shuffle to hear it.


Ace Cosgrove – Burning Slums

Among the many highlights of this past weekend’s Landmark Music Festival, young rapper Ace Cosgrove stood out for an energetic and inspired performance. Despite a sore throat and early time slot, Cosgrove won many new fans rapping from the middle of the crowd while his large live band jammed onstage. While I wish that every band booked by Landmark came from our hometown, they deserve props for presenting some quality DC talent to the devoted early-goers of the festival, especially Ace Cosgrove. Check out this video for “Burning Slums”, a Black Diamond-produced track from Cosgrove’s UsVsRobots mixtape from last year.


The NRIs – Across The River

Nayan Bhula’s folk-rock ensemble The NRIs show their love for and excellent taste in DC landmarks in their new video for “Across The River”. While singing about familiar facets of living in this town, Bhula and his guitar take a tour of landmarks including Fort Reno and the Sunday drum circle at Meridian Hill Park. The long-gestating video accompanies the pay-whatever-you-want 2012 EP The Charm.


Song Premiere: “Big Dumb Hooks” by The Beanstalk Library


I’ve seen a lot of bands in my time diving deep into the DC music scenes, and there’s no mistaking that The Beanstalk Library is the friendliest. Bandleader Ryan Walker exudes natural charm and enthusiasm when performing that follows him offstage into post-show mingling. He’s also the rare example of a frontman lending his talent to other bands, playing with Justin Jones and Andy Zipf’s Cowards Choir. The Beanstalk Library’s lineup of keyboardist Joel Hicks, guitarist Brian Pagels, violinist Erin Ryan, bassist David Gassman and drummer Adam Neubauer have an affectionate performing chemistry that’s rare to see.

Apart from a one-off single “Whiskey Mountain” honoring the late Sean Meyers of Norman Rockwell, it’s been a couple of years since we tasted and digested the full length album The View From Here. After many months road-testing new material, TBL is nearly ready to drop a new EP, and Hometown Sounds is tickled pink to premiere the first single from it.

“Big Dumb Hooks” is a classic pop song with a driving beat and singalong chorus. Walker knows the power of a catchy melody and well-placed ooo’s, and this song really will sink its hooks into you as advertized. TBL makes well-crafted pop-rock music with deft songwriting, hard-hitting drums, full guitar/bass sound and flourishes from violin and keys for a mature sound that’s criminally underrated in DC these days.

As we mentioned on yesterday’s episode of our DC music podcast, The Beanstalk Library kicks off a show this Friday night September 25th at Iota, playing with a band from Boston called The Lights Out. Lead guitarist Adam Ritchie played in high school bands with TBL’s Brian Pagels and they haven’t shared a stage since 1999. Funk & soul party band Precautionary Measures finishes up the night. As with almost all Iota shows, tickets are only available at the door, so get there early!


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