Best New Indie Rock Releases, Jan. 2012 – The Sanctuaries, Gary Go, Paper Lights, The Set, Graham Repulski, Songs for the Sleepwalkers, Mythologies

The last weeks of one year and the first couple of weeks of a new year often mean very little in the way of new releases; since so many people are distracted with the holidays, many bands and record labels wait until later January and after to put out new releases.

That said, there have been some new releases that we want to tell you about that we have not seen on any other sites – so, as far as we know, most of the artists’ releases featured below are IRC exclusives who sent us tracks directly to share with IRC listeners – with exceptions of perhaps Tape Deck Mountain and Grand and Noble.

First up is the new track from the Jan. 7th debut LP from The Sanctuaries, who exhibit a raw lo-fi rock that we appreciate immensely, especially when it’s this hot. Let the music speak for itself – the first single from the band’s new album, Anette.

“She Got Bit“ – The Sanctuaries from AnnetteJan. 7th

The Sanctuaries’ website

The quirky and introspective pop artist Gary Go was suddenly thrust to the forefront of the scene upon collaborating with mega-producer and hit maker Benny Benassi, writing and performing the chart-topping dance club anthem “Cinema.”

After enjoying a Grammy-nominated remix from Skrillex, and being front and center in Benassi’s video for “Close to Me”, Gary Go toured the globe as the face and voice of dance music. Now Go returns with a new track, “Our Love Is On The Line,” released on Jan. 11th.

The new album, Now Was Once The Future, from which the single originates, features a stellar group of musicians, including drummer Deantoni Parks (Meshell N’Degeocello/Mars Volta), violinist Davide Rossi (Coldplay/Goldfrapp), Memphis Horns (Elvis Presley/Al Green) and mixer Ken Thomas (Sigur Ros/M83/Moby).

Paper Lights is a promising Atlanta DIY ambient duo who create cinematic, atmospheric indie music.

The duo is made up of Dan Snyder (vox,keys) and Cory Estes (guitars,vox), and regularly get help from various talented musicians from the Atlanta music scene.

This is the duo’s web debut, so don’t be surprised if they start popping up on other sites in the weeks to follow.

IRC has a long history, as some of you know, of breaking out new bands and artists that have not been featured on a major music site previously.

Previously, they have opened for Carl Dylan, and list their top influences as Jonsi, Copeland, Coldplay, Snow Patrol, Thrice, and Mute Math.

Listen to more on Paper Lights’ Soundcloud page

Note: We’re not surprised by Paper Lights’ success since featuring them in 2012.

Tito Ramsey is a Seattle DIY musician who creates soulful electro-pop. On January 10, he released the EP, Hi Lo. Ramsey’s creations are a synergy of aggressive pop, electronica, and soul, often drawing comparisons to Jeff Buckley and Little Richard.

His solo show features guitar, keys, vocals, live beat sequencing, recordings of found sounds and spontaneous bodily eruptions. He has previously opened for bands like The Head & the Heart, Moondoggies, and Hey Marseilles. He has played shows in London, Amsterdam, Paris, Barcelona and in many cities around the U.S.

New Jersey musician Graham Repulski will release his new 7″ single on Jan. 13th, and we have the advanced tracks here for all of you to review. Repulski is a Big School Records’ recording artist.

Repulski is a lo-fi indie artist who counts among his influences bands like Guided By Voices, The Fall, Polvo, Archers Of Loaf, and others.  His band strives to continue carrying the 90’s lo-fi indie torch back into its glory days when music prevailed over style and image.

“Everyone Likes My Three Dollar Shirt“ – Graham Repulski from My Color Is Red 7″

Minneapolis alternative rock band, The Set, has been making waves in the Twin Cities budding music scene headlining for artists such as Johnnyrook and Van Stee.

In 2009, while attending college in St. Paul, lead singer Case Shannon met guitarist Mike McCool. McCool, who had honed his craft at the Berklee College of Music, intentionally forgot everything he had ever learned about music only to reinvent it entirely, the band says.

In the summer of 2010, they recruited bassist Matt Ritterspach and drummer Jason Worrell to complete The Set.

The band has received college radio airplay on over 200 stations, and been licensed to 12 hit television shows, including MTV’s The Real World. On January 3rd, the band released Loretta, and sent us two tracks from the album to feature, “Nobody Knows” and “Here is My Heart.”

The band lists their major influences as Kings of Leon, Black Keys, Cold War Kids, Nirvana, Oasis, and Blind Melon.

“Nobody Knows“The Set from Loretta

“Here is My Heart“The Set from Loretta

Check out The Set’s Facebook page

Hailing from the region of Lake Mälaren in Sweden, the band, Songs For The Sleepwalkers, is the “nom de disque” behind italian-born expatriate and road-runner Andrea Caccese.

The young singer/songwriter’s heartfelt tunes fall somewhere in between post-rock and alternative folk, fueled by an eclectic, yet instinctive and minimalist attitude.

Songs For The Sleepwalkers debut album, Our Rehearsed Spontaneous Reactions, is a reflection of the ever-changing landscapes of the Swedish countryside, sculpted by the northern seasons: from the sparkling and vibrant summer days to the still, frozen winter nights – passing through a carpeted path of yellow and orange fallen leaves along the way.

The LP is an intimate, candle-lighted record whose strength is found in the haunting simplicity of the songs; acoustic guitars and vocals are arguably at the core of the album, but electric guitars, cello, drums and percussions appear frequently, helping push the sound in different directions, song after song, even daring incursions into electronic music.

Caccese cites his major musical influences as Elliott Smith, Pedro The Lion, Minus The Bear, Nick Drake, My Bloody Valentine, Bon Iver, Broken Social Scene, Sigur Ròs, Tom Waits, Beatles, The Kinks, and The Zombies.

“Tell Me How“ Songs For The Sleepwalkers from Our Rehearsed Spontaneous Reactions

Mythologies is the Olympia, Washington-based ambient punk/noise pop solo project of Evergreen State College poetry student, guitarist, singer-songwriter Issac Scott, who is also the front-man of Portland indie-rock band Squid Attack!

The Portland Mercury wrote: “there is something very real about the younger Scott’s still-evolving skill as a frontman. With a weathered voice far beyond his years (inexplicably enough, he sounds like David Byrne)…Issac, have fun in college, but don’t you dare put that guitar down anytime soon.”

Portland’s Willamette Week wrote: “Squid Attack proves itself more than just a gimmick by utilizing Issac’s alarmingly grown-up vocals—how many kids do you know who sound like Blood on the Tracks-era Dylan?—and some stirring minimal songwriting.”

Those observations are some pretty high praise for such a young man in a crowded field of indie musicians. Here are two tracks Scott sent us from his new release, Mud Bay. Among Scott’s main influences include Sonic Youth, The Velvet Underground, Deerhunter, Modest Mouse, Band of Horses, and Neil Young.

“Guernica“Mythologies from Mud Bay – Jan. 12th, 2012

“It“Mythologies from Mud Bay

Mythologies on Bandcamp

Mythologies in the Facebook



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