Review: Same – “Is Midnight”

Pittsburgh alt/indie quartet Same has released the digital-only single “Is Midnight” and the surprising thing about it isn’t its glassy-eyed beauty, but how different it sounds from the more driving refrains of a song like the band’s “Camp Vacation,” which opened 2016’s excellent Weird As Hell EP. The new track, available on Bandcamp, is pure…

Review: Pachyderm – “Verge”

Pachyderm’s turning out to be a tough band to pin down. While the obtuse single the group dropped in January, the aptly titled “I’m Not Happy, I’m Just High,” was epic stuff on the order of The Sea and Cake, the Pittsburgh-based quintet also traffics in a lighter, sometimes alarmingly straight-forward brand of indie-pop, powerful…

Review: The Lampshades – “Astrology”

The Lampshades, a trio of Pittsburgh-by-way-of-Altoona ne’er-do-wells, is nothing if not ambitious. It hasn’t always entirely been this way. Sunshine, its 2005 debut, was more of a catalog of by-the-numbers power-pop than the loose-limbed junk-rock these guys have perfected on records like Arena Punk and Numbskull Nothinghead. Even after a good number of outings, though…

Review: Altar Boy – S/T

Pittsburgh label Crafted Sounds recently Tweeted out the following in response to a request to drink PBR with members of Altar Boy, a group of post-something Pittsburghers releasing their debut EP Friday on said label: “Altar Boy does not have a Twitter but they got a tighttttt EP coming out.” Tighttttt? Now, that’s an understatement….

Video Premiere: The Lampshades – “Civilization and its Discontents”

It starts with a detuned piano and ends with the lonely shaking of maracas, an epic and loose-limbed nugget titled “Civilization and its Discontents.” This is Mid Atlantic junk-rock of the highest priority and it makes an exclusive debut right here, today, on Popdose. The band is The Lampshades, a Pittsburgh trio of the finest…

Review: Painted Eyes – “Demo 2018”

Talk about modesty. The Pittsburgh trio Painted Eyes quietly dropped its debut release, the appropriately titled Demo 2018, on Bandcamp Wednesday, not making a fuss or even providing so much as a cursory biography about the band. And the thing is pretty damn incredible. For punks addicted to Damaged-era Black Flag or even early Bad…

Profile: The Gotobeds (2018)

“It’s always the easiest and least interesting route to have a preconceived notion of what band you want to sound like and then go do that.” Eli Kasan’s riffing again. And I’m listening close for clues. “We were terrible early on ‘cause we wanted to sound like too many things, and weren’t sure which suited…

Review: Barlow – “In A Stranger’s Car” (Reissue)

Lo-fi fuzz-pop – think The Cure coalescing around the guitars of Les Thugs – is the name of the game on In A Stranger’s Car, the 2017 outing from Pittsburgh’s Barlow that gets the re-release treatment on cassette and streaming formats from Crafted Sounds Monday. The new edition features outtakes and promises of things to come….

Review: Blankets For Laura – “Orange” EP

Thank you, Shay Park. While much of the Pittsburgh underground is awaiting the debut EP from Soda Club, the local dream-pop quartet Park fronts with saxophonist Jarrett Krause, Park quietly released on Bandcamp a four-song gem of an EP from her now-defunct solo project Blankets For Laura. And it’s a reminder of why we fell…

Review: Expires – “Fake Sigils”

Pittsburgh has never been known, particularly, as a hub for post-rock, that fluid genre of “music for people who read books” that flirts with everything from shoegaze to math-rock. (We leave that to Louisville.) But Burgh-based multi-instrumentalist Mike Layton has been plugging away quietly in the regional SWPA scene for a few years now, most…