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Tankfarm Future Sounds #28
Tankfarm Future Sounds

Tankfarm Future Sounds 28th installment features artists close to the company's home base of San Francisco and from as far away as Wimbledon, England, Perth, Australia, and Skive, Denmark. The disc compiles indie-pop's up and coming trend setters. This month's edition features:

The Magic Bullets (www.mbullets.com) whose song "Heartstroke" is an indie pop alloy of cruising riffs and emo-soaked vocals reflective of Voxtrot and Cold War Kids. This folk-pop sextet from San Francisco, California is excited about their single "Heartstroke" making its public premier on the Scott Prendergast film Kabluey starring Lisa Kudrow.

"The Plot" by New York City's sextet White Rabbits (www.whiterabbitsmusic.com) has an urgent beat and entangling vocals that make for a snappy melody. They have made appearances on The Late Show With David Letterman, the CMJ Showcase, the Siren Festival and most recently Lollapalooza.

Solo artist Vivek Shraya (www.vivekshraya.com) from Toronto, Canada provides bouncy grooves and syrupy vocal streaks likened to Rooney and The White Stripes on his song "Fevered" from his fourth album If We're Not Talking which was produced by Meghan Toohey and features a guest appearance by Sara Quin of Tegan And Sara.

The indie synth-pop foursome Snowman (www.thesnowmanempire.com) from Perth, Australia offers '60s style psychedelic inflections on their song "You Are A Casino." The vocals and guitar rotations are encircled in jangly tambourines which supply an ambient vibe through the tune and casting trance-pop shimmers.

Los Angeles, California's quartet Dirty Little Secret (www.dirtylittlesecret.biz) has quirky electro-pop glistens on their track "Feeling Burned" which have similarities to Hot Chip. The deep toned vocals and twisting guitar riffs are turned low as a choir of voices sings through the bridge. It's a cool touch to the track.

Wimbledon, London's solo artist Jamie T. (http://www.jamie-t.com) offers tribal beats on his single "Salvador" while the rhythmic vocals embed a chanting "Hoo-Ha" along the melodic channels. His vocals have a Brit-pop romantic hue to them which bodes well with the Latin-accents. Jamie T. is on a worldwide tour and will be hitting the Reading Festival in England and the V Festival in Toronto, Canada.

The 7-piece ensemble Dune (www.dune.de) from Skive, Denmark excite the charming melodic flow of "No Speed" with softly stroking vocals smoothing over ebullient guitar cuts and cozy synth-pop excursions. It's a gorgeous tune and hard to believe that all 7 members of this band are still in high school.

The indie rock trio of Until June (www.untiljune.com) complements their tender guitar expressions on "Sleepless" with emo-plaque vocals. The melodic coils have a gentle shattering effect which makes this song reverberate beautifully. Based in Hollywood, California, Until June have a folk-rock sound aligned with Josh Kelley and Augustana.

The foursome Expatriate (www.expatriateband.com) from Sydney, Australia have a nu wave feel in their sound likened to She Wants Revenge and Motion City Soundtrack. The band's producer John Goodmanson (Wu Tang Clan, Sleater Kinney, Hot Hot Heat) brought out pouty vocals and pop/rock oriented riffs on the band's single "Crazy." Expatriate are currently opening for Silverchair.

"You're A Wolf" from Los Angeles, California's sextet Sea Wolf (www.seawolfmusic.com) binds soft wiggling keyboards with smooth coasting rhythms and relaxing guitar sequences. The folk musings of the vocals are interwoven with comfy string passages. The band played at Toronto's North By Northwest Festival and will be releasing their current album in September 2007.

The 3-piece neo roots rock combo The Whigs (www.thewhigs.com) display very airy jaunts on their track "Written Invitation." From Athens, Georgia, the band favors delicacy in their movements and crisscrossing vocals that float with a feather-light touch. The Whigs are embarking on a lengthy tour this Fall.

The 4-man crew of The Frail (www.myspace.com/thefrailsf) can be described as matadors of electro-punk with dance-pop beats and crinkling synths reminiscent of Monsters Are Waiting and The Faint. A San Francisco band, their song "Count On This" is a catchy melody perfect for house parties.

Huntington Beach, California's quartet Venus Infers (www.myspace.com/venusinfers) decks Dylan-esque vocal registers with a retro rock groove liken to old Rolling Stones on their track "Sake In Osaka." It's melody making at its basics and still very likeable.

"Lay It Down" from New York City's quintet The Midnight Hours (www.myspace.com/midnighthoursband) has a soft pop palette and marching band drumming with a fundamental rock feel. The throbbing vocals have a personalized style and the cool southern rock texturing crenellates their current release The Five Believers EP.

The Mint Chicks (www.themintchicks.com) song "Crazy! Yes! Dumb! No!" benchmarks this rock quartet from Auckland, New Zealand in the indie-pop sect with warm-crushed vocals set in a soft flowy melody reflective of Unicorn, The Walkmen, and Stereolab. The track tops the compilation off with a comfy indie-pop melody.

The compilation is uniform and yet each song has its own intricacies. The multiple flavors of indie-pop on Tankfarm Future Sounds #28 hit more synth-pop bands and some roots rock numbers, showing trends toward ambient and folk rock.

-Susan Frances

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