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Backstreet Pages

English Singles

Excellent four song debut from this great Sacramento band. Containing members of bands like The Bananas, Ski Instructors, Bright Ideas and Nar, this is some top-notch DIY pop that will scratch that TVPs/McTells/Cause Co-Motion! itch just fine. With added flavor provided by angular 12-string guitar leads, English Singles have been described as a cross between Buzzcocks and Razorcuts and we concur. Top quality.

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Totally True

Violens

Absolutely gorgeous pop from this Brooklyn three-piece whose music eludes classification, expertly blending percussive guitar work and silky harmonies in a way reminiscent of 90s sonic pop forebears like Pale Saints, Lush, McCarthy and The Chameleons. The lovely vocals on "Totally True" have an almost 60s feel; their debt to such soft-rock touchstones as The Association and Sagittarius is one of the many unique elements of Violens' sound. The non-album b-side "Something Falling" is a dreamy ballad marked by an effectively spare production, sweeping synths and the band's trademark harmonies.

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Winnifred

Roommates

Totally fantastic power-pop from Ben Cook Aka Young Guv (Fucked Up, Marvelous Darlings, The Bitters) and Marvelous Mark Fosco (Marvelous Darlings). Four smash shits that wouldn't sound out of place on any great mix tape from 1977, 1987 or even 2012. Radio hits in some weird parallel universe where The Raspberries are on Midnight Special every week and Bram Tchaikovsky is still in The Records.

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Telling Lies

Evans The Death

This great young band draw as much from the lyrical dexterity of Morrissey and Jarvis Cocker as they do from the scuzzed-up melodic exuberance of early My Bloody Valentine and The Pixies. This great single is taken from their forthcoming album is a perfect introduction to their distinctively brash brand of smart, energetic pop. Includes a lovely non-LP b-side in the original version of "Morning Voice."

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Capricornia

Allo Darlin'

The first single from the eagerly anticipated second album from Allo Darlin' entitled Europe, Capricornia is a lovely bit of jangle-pop that rides in with a country-inflected lilt and ends with an impressive bit of guitar squall. In between you get all the melodic beauty that we've come to expect from Allo Darlin', a master class in how to write a proper pop tune. "When You Were Mine" on the flip side is no mere b-side -- it's an excellent folky tune of love lost that's sure to pull the heartstrings.

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Know Me

Frankie Rose

Know Me 7"

The first single from Frankie's new album Interstellar. It's a gorgeous piece of widescreen pop, dreamy and driving at the same time. The clean, big hooks bring to mind the best of mid-80s pop -- Smiths, New Order -- without sacrificing any of Frankie's unique melodic style. Le Chev's remix on the flip side is pure 2012 - a slow-motion house burner with a tropical vibe and atmosphere to spare. Turn it up and drift away.

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Single Payer Class War

Manatee

Oakland's mysterious Manatee are back, following up their "Indecision" single with this sharp blast of punk energy. Where that last single flirted with power-pop and late Replacements melodic rock inflected with shoegaze sonics, this single is straight up punk rock. Two songs, three chords, four minutes.

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She Smiles For Pictures

Big Troubles

The second single from Romantic Comedy. Featuring lead vocals from Ian, "She Smiles For Pictures" is a gorgeous piece of power-pop, fueled by ringing guitars, an earworm of a guitar lead and Luka & Sam's propulsive rhythm section. 2:53 of pop perfection. On The flip, "Polyommatus Blue" is a gem that recalls the lost mid-period Creation pop of groups like 18 Wheeler and pre-Screamadelica Primal Scream, and is exclusive to this single.

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Revelations

Devon Williams

"Revelations" is the latest single from Devon Williams' excellent Euphoria album. A gorgeous piece of summertime soft pop, "Revelations" brings to mind a studio meeting of Brian Wilson and Curt Boettcher, with it's soaring harmonies, strings and woodwinds. The bonus track to this digital-only single is Violens' remix of "Tower of Thought," is a note-perfect slice of 1992-style breakbeat hardcore, sounding for all the world like a lost classic on XL or Moving Shadow.

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Black Saturday

Girls Names

A superb taster for Girls Names' forthcoming second album. Black Saturday is a great example of where the band is heading. The guitars are more subdued now, sharing sonic space with a gorgeously melodic bassline and subtle synths. Clearly in tune with contemporaries like Beach Fossils and Wild Nothing, Girls Names bring their own very distinctive song-writing vision to the forefront here.

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Something About You

Terry Malts

Second single from this great SF punk band. All three songs on "Something About You" are full of fuzzy/crunchy riffs, galloping drums and sing-along vocal hooks. Mashing up the best bits from such stellar forebears as The Undertones, Buzzcocks and Descendents, Terry Malts haven't forgotten that one of the key elements of punk has always been FUN.

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Get A Grip

Spectrals

First single from Spectrals excellent debut album Bad Penny. Upbeat, swinging, soulful pop that has garnered comparisons with folks as disparate as Arctic Monkey's Alex Turner and Real Estate. From the shining guitar chords to the lazy melody, this is simply a perfectly-crafted tune and a superb taster for the deep, immaculately-conceived and executed album this is Bad Penny.

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Sad Girls

Big Troubles

The first single from Big Troubles fantastic second album Romantic Comedy. A lovely slice of updated power-pop based on a catchy stop-start verse that gives way to an indelible, spiraling chorus, this tune is as big and bright as they come. On the flip side, "Phantom" raises the volume a bit, hearkening back to first album hits.

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Piglet

Sarandon

At last, a single version of the pop hit from Sarandon's Age of Reason. A perfect example of Sarandon, the 2011 version. Catchy as hell, and yes it's 'pop', but pop with a razor edge and a wicked sense of humor. Also featured on this single are covers of two huge influences on Sarandon - The McTells' "Expecting Joe" and The Nightingales' classic "Crafty Fag." Sarandon know their music history and are great interpreters for these two cornerstones of DIY post-punk pop.

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Your Sympathy

Devon Williams

LA pop master Devon Williams is back with this simply beautiful piece of timeless pop, recalling legends like The Church, Felt and Teardrop Explodes while still being pure Devon in it's attention to arrangement and melody. Includes an exclusive non-LP b-side.

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Dancing With A Hole In Your Heart

Art Museums

Comfortably occupying the spot where 60s pop suss meets first-wave post-punk DIY pop and contemporary bedroom experimentation, The Art Museums craft positively giddy tunes that make terms like lo-fi and indie-pop redundant and pointless; this is just great POP made by people who know and love it. Three great songs from one of our favorite bands.

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End Times

Weekend

As one of the highlights of Sports, "End Times" is power-pop as interpreted by "Feed Me With Your Kiss"-era MBV, an amazing mix of melody and racket that perfectly encapsulates what Weekend are about. Driven by relentless drums and a pummeling bass line, it could the most straightforwardly pop track on the album. On the flip side, LA duo Speculator remix album opener "Coma Summer" into a hypnotic Kraut-inflected daydream -- trippy, motorik and totally compelling.

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I'm Neurotic

Terry Malts

Great punk-flavored power-pop from this mysterious San Francisco trio. Their tunes are catchy like fishhooks, jumping off from such familiar touchstones as Ramones and Buzzcocks, stopping off with some fine SoCal friends like The Descendents and Red Cross, arriving at an energetic modern power-pop/punk amalgam not too far from The Exploding Hearts and The Clorox Girls.

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