Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Morning Show with John Richards, is “Badaboom” by Tapes ‘N Tapes from the 2011 album Outside on Ibid Records.
Remember when it was novel for a band to blow up on the Internet? Five or six years ago, it meant something to be touted on the music blogs, and certain bands were able to go from nothing to something very quickly. Minneapolis’ Tapes ‘N Tapes were perhaps the epitome of music blog hype in 2005, when their online popularity translated to many festival spots and a label contract with XL. Their self-produced, self-recorded album The Loon was suddenly reaching wider audiences, and deservedly so. Its quirky energy and fiery ferocity reminded fans alternately of Pavement, Pixies and Modest Mouse, yet it sounded enough unlike anything else to be instantly recognizable. However, the band’s second album, Walk It Off, may have suffered the effects of increased production, via Dave Fridmann (Mogwai, The Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev) and fared less well critically. Of course, by then the blogs had already begun to change, becoming less wide-eyed and more cynical, and of course there grew so much more chatter and chaff with the increased number of blogs trying to find the next big thing, but critics and fans then were clearly hoping for more like its quirky bedroom-born predecessor. Fortunately for them, Tapes ‘N Tapes’ third album returns to many the elements that people once loved. Outside is more stripped down and loose, but it’s definitely not The Loon, Part 2 and shows a band that has gained more prowess and technique over time, as on today’s featured song, “Badaboom,” which builds from a catchy mid-tempo melody to a high-intensity moment to highlight frontman Josh Grier’s trademark howl, before taking a final twist before the end. If you liked Tapes ‘N Tapes before, you’re gonna like them again.
You’ll also have the chance to see them again soon, as they’ll be back in Seattle on March 8th at The Crocodile. Check the band’s website, Facebook and MySpace pages for more dates and information. For now, here’s the official video for their latest single, “Freak Out”: