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Watch Rikroshi's Melancholic and Symbolism-Heavy Video for "Drug Lords"

Rikroshi is a band that seems like they get more polished in an exponential way with every new thing they put out. Recently that has included their full self-titled album that we previewed at The Deli last October, and which was fully released in early February, as well as a gripping new video for track "Drug Lords" from that release.

We've got the latter here for you today, and it is damn well-made. "Drug Lords" is heavily impressionistic and full of almost-grim symbolism that's yet somehow darkly comforting. Concentric collapsing circles, shots of weathered statues and religious symbols, and a triptych of the same image of the sun's strangely muted body sitting over the ocean (that coincides with the dramatic climbing piano climax of "Drug Lords") couple with a semi-transparent image of Bjork-influenced singer Tessa Bennetch that has her face mostly out of frame and looking away from camera as she sings, all of which is masterfully cut together for a video that combines with its song in a ideal and fitting way.

"Drug Lords" is the rare music video that takes an already-good song and amplifies its aesthetic, making it feel like this is the true version of the piece, it adds that much to it. Give it a watch below, and let it envelop you in its mood and symbols, and head over to Rikroshi's Bandcamp for more from this strong album.


Empty Markets Pours Out the Noise on "Rash Decisions," Album Coming April 8

Ohhh crusted punk gods of death and ferocity be praised, we have found something nice for you guys today. From the riotous folds of the always-killer 12XU label (XETAS, Flesh Lights, etc.) comes yet another band as hard and fast as it is smart, this one going by the name Empty Markets.

Empty Markets is long-time heavy music maker Drew Schmitz's new project (formerly of Cruddy, The Hex Dispensers, Brain Attack and more), and they're just a few days from releasing their first album, the sure-to-be hard edged Stainless Steel. It's not just the name that gives away that this record is going to be full of clean, devastatingly sharp hardcore tracks; in anticipation of the release, Empty Markets have put out the first two songs of the album on Bandcamp, and they are nothing if not dangerously loud and hard.

We've got our favorite here for you, a track called "Rash Decisions" that features absolutely one of the best intros of any noise song we've heard in a long time. "Rash Decisions" is a lesson in how to build a noise punk track, layering one-by-one a bass riff that's fast even for standards of music like this (by which we mean punk-influenced heady shit; there's not all that much music exatly like this), then an ear-gripping rolling thunder of a hardcore drum beat, and a droning, chundering guitar blast that busts the song wide open and sweeps everything up in a hurricane of sound that the track's frantic dual vocalists ride on top of like harpies of art rock. It is savage, raging stuff, and we love the fuck out of it.

Now is truly a great time for heavy music in Austin, with seemingly band after band coming out of the gnarled punky woodwork with excellent hard music, and Empty Markets has absolutely carved its own space out in that genre with these tracks. We are awaiting the April 8 release of the full Stainless Steel with fists raised and a'ready to pump, and in the meantime, here's somethin' good and loud to throw your body and brain around to.


Austin Deli Exclusive: Genuine Leather Premieres Rollicking EP “Blossom Child of the Southern Sun"

We’ve got somethin’ special for you Deli readers today! After a year of song writing and production, local indie act Genuine Leather is premiering their new EP “Blossom Child of the Southern Sun" with The Deli today.

Formed in 2011 by Chris Galis, Genuine Leather emerged on the Austin scene around that time with their song “The Viper,” and they’ve been planning the release of Brunch for some time now. “Blossom Child of the Southern Sun” is a rollicking fusion of influences that is equal parts Nada Surf and Band of Horses, with a healthy dose of garage-rock psychedelia thrown in to boot. Using distinctive guitar riffing as the back-bone of the EP, the record sways with a lackadaisical 90s alternative feel that effortlessly breaks into melodic choruses.

Genuine Leather is about to reintroduce themselves to Austin and elsewhere with this nostalgically familiar and deeply infectious sound, so be one of the early listeners by hitting that play button below.


Lee Ackerley
(catch more of Lee's work atSlackerlee.com)

Katy Kirby's "3" EP Is Maybe the Best Austin Music We Missed Last Year

Katy Kirby is somethin' real rare. Not just in relation to her pure voice, or true skill with words, but in a very now-specific way: Katy Kirby, somehow, in 2016, has figured out how to write a love song both fresh and authentic.

Kirby released a three track EP aptly and simply named 3 in mid 2015, but it just got over to our ears about a month ago, and it is without question one of our bigger misses of last year. This is a strong piece of recording, the kind of single-person guitar-heavy folk that can only come from an obviously young, obviously flipped-on young person that hits their musical stride at just the right age to capture that elusive something, as wild as it is sad, that only the youth ever have captured in folk. Often someone this age, and this hip to modern sounds, writes folk that's indulgent and immature in its approach, not knowing the history of its genre enough and wanting to be taken too seriously. But not Katy Kirby. You can take her seriously right now. She's got the stuff, and she's using it right.

3 is evidence of that. The EP in question begins with its strongest track, though don't take that to mean that the rest isn't quality. It is, but opener “Every Time” is a sunny day special. Like a classic folk song (it wouldn't surprise me one bit to learn that Kirby is well versed in such songs), it gets to its good hook early, and damn is it good when Kirby sings “Every time I count my blessings/I count you first."

That there's a line worthy of a song, as is Kirby's voice itself that sings those endearing words. You notice that voice particularly in the bridge, where most of the 60s-inspired “fields-and-mountains” guitar picking quiets down to let you hear her timbre nice and clear. Katy Kirby's voice is the star of these tracks, just as it should be, and you know it's truly quality because it's best when it hits its highest notes. Those tone are pure and clear like only some talented young girls have ever been able to do (well, and Diane Coffee), and it's not something you have to question. You hear it in your bones.

The other two tracks may not grip me in the heart (and have me thinking of that countryside air I grew up in) quite like “Every Time,” but they're nothing but good as well. “Every Time” is followed by the much more country “Come Back to Nashville,” a nice track that shows off Kirby's story-building skills and continues to trbrsl her modern era-bucking ability to write those damn love songs that really get to you.

3 then closes at its most experimental, though with a track that's still quite well-built and efficient for being so. Called “All of Everything,” the song is much slower than the rest of the record, and it ditches the guitar for a hymn-ready organ sound and a filtering of Kirby's robin's tones through a heavy electric fade. It sounds like a song you'd unexpectedly hear playing out of one of those old kids “The cow says moo” toys, complete with barnyard sounds and the true spirit of the South inside of it, and indeed the whole song feels like Kirby's take on the past seen through the lens of now. It's her own hymn, sripping the form of its oldschool dogma and making it breathy with the air of the modern, independent era, which has its own way of looking at the world's pretty things.

This is a real romantic's record- no bullshit and full of lovely clouddrifter harmonies. It might be almost a year old at this point, but it's good enough and still little-known enough to absolutely demand to be on your Spring 2016 playlist, espeically as we hit the kind of rare temperate days in Texas that Kirby says the record was completed during. The next sunny day, take this one out with you and sit with it a bit in the light and the breeze. You won't regret it one bit, nor will you regret taking a second to try Katy Kirby on for size below.

(You can also vote for Katy Kirby for The Deli Austin's Artist of the Month to the right, so get on that if you like what you hear.)


Pure, Unadulterated Indie Rock on Polymer's "Avery South"

True indie rock, with the focus on the rock, isn't as common in 2016 as it once was, but local band Polymer has been bucking that trend for the past few years with their brand of music that's all guitars, drums, vocals and little else. To some synth lovers, that description might sound negative, but we at The Deli think there's something to be said for a band that cuts itself down to the barest essentials needed and comes out of the studio with a finely prepared track. "Avery South" is fun and fast in the strumming, pure slacker in the vocals and lyrics, and has that good janglefuzz from your favorite 90s/2000s indie bands that you still jam all the time; in other words, it's good stuff for anyone into indie rock. Listen below, rockists of the hill country.


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