>> It took us a while to actually focus on them, but it has recently come to our attention that we love the promo tracks from the latest Faunts record. The Edmonton-based electropop quintet, which we first wrote about here in November, released Feb. 17 its sophomore set Feel.Love.Thinking.Of. on Friendly Fire Recordings. The label has been offering the title track and the tune "It Hurts Me All The Time" as free downloads for weeks -- if not longer -- and the tracks have finally made their way to the top of the running ITunes playlist we use to keep track of our latest finds. We're particularly enamored with the latter track, a mid-tempo strummer with a lead synth line that could have made its way on to The Cure's 17 Seconds. The track is driven by blippy percussion in the verse, but it is the chorus, with its prominent acoustic guitar and punchy twee bass playing, that completely draws us in. It reminds us of -- well, it sort of reminds us of late, great Philly/Brooklyn act Haywood's devastating "Come On Tell The Truth" a bit, now that we think of it. We're posting both tracks below. And then we're eagerly waiting for our EMusic subscription to refresh so we can get the rest of the Faunts record, because "It Hurts Me All The Time" is pure gold. Faunts previously issued Faunts Remixed in November; its first longplayer High Expectations/Low Results came out in 2005.
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[buy Faunts records from Newbury Comics here]
[buy Haywood records from Insound here]
>> Our Philadelphia-based operative Deano pointed out to us that the forthcoming Superchunk EP Leaves In The Gutter is streaming at Merge Records' web site. And so we're streaming it. And true to Deano's word, it is fill with some hot rockers. That fast 1-2-3-4 that leads the guitar riffing of opener "Learned To Surf" reminds us of Spent's exceptional tune "Landscaper" from that ersatz act's tremendous 1995 collection Songs Of Drinking And Rebellion -- which, of course, was released on Merge. You see what we did there? Tied it all together, yeh? The quasi-title track of Leaves In The Gutter, "Misfits & Mistakes," is a bracing number as well, with some loose, strandy guitar solos that we dig a lot; the track was previously available last year on vinyl only. And the tremeloed guitar on the unabashedly melodic and occasionally jaunty "Screw It Up" is wholly arresting. Those are three tracks that could stand alone as singles, all issued on this one special little EP next month. Leaves In The Gutter will be released April 7, and you're gonna want that. Pre-order the set here. Superchunk's last collection of new material to see release was Here's To Shutting Up in 2001.
>> Favours For Sailors. They are from England. They are awesome. You should go buy their EP Furious Sons immediately, if you like indie rock. More on them another time.