Exclusive: Astrotheque Premiers Indie-Tech Single ‘Sweet the Sound’

Astrotheque, the digital dream-pop stars of Austin, has premiered their latest single, ‘Sweet the Sound’, taken from their forthcoming debut album Return to Form right here on Track Rambler. A headlining show at Barracuda in Austin on September 2nd with Hamerzya and Obsolete Machines will be home to the group’s widespread release of the single, with each attendee receiving a free download of ‘Sweet the Sound’. While we don’t have a definitive release date for Return to Form (Fall 2017), “Sweet the Sound” is enough to keep eardrums occupied in the meantime.

The track is a cognitive arrangement of two genres that are ever-so-popularly being seen together; indie rock and digital pop. Each genre retains its own identity when under inspection, but upon a step back, it all melds together quite like a finished puzzle. Piecing it all together are Astrotheque founders JDub and Claudio Ramirez, a duo that has thrived off of experimenting with sounds unexplored in previous endeavors. With John Looke taking responsibility for synth, keyboards and programming, and Dave Terry locking down the trapset, the group’s live performance is promised to be just as stimulating.

JDub, the energetic lead vocalist, guitarist, and multi-instrumentalist, boasts a satin-smooth voice through the song, easily floating through moving melodies while laying down a perplexing melodic-minor progression on guitar. On the other side, Ramirez drops a powerfully enigmatic soundscape as the digital producer, captivating listeners with an array of distorted sounds.

The intense combination is a battle, one from which the audience walks away victorious. It becomes easy to get lost in both spectrums, whether it be the cool, groovy indie half, or the bombastic, head-turning half. Return to Form is promised to be an adventure into the minds of these arranging masterminds. Click below to get lost in the digital dream-pop cosmos of ‘Sweet the Sound’


Tickets to Astrotheque at Barracuda w/ special guests Hamerzya and Obsolete Machines can be purchased here.


Written by: Sawyer Click


Seth Glier Calls For Action Against Fracking With Latest Single ‘Water On Fire’

A bridge of understanding between freedom and capitalism, ‘Water On Fire’ is Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Seth Glier’s latest single. An early release from his fifth album Birds – just released on the 25th, the track features Glier’s brightly optimistic disposition in a brand new, devastating expedition into the controversies of fracking. Intense lyrics and an alluring tone, the single screams against the injustice, he feels.

I wrote ‘Water On Fire‘ to explore the falsehood between freedom and capitalism.” The environmentally-aware singer said. “Water On Fire‘ was inspired after a conversation with a friend in Oklahoma who’s been dealing with daily earthquakes in his home ever since his state started aggressively fracking. I believe that climate change might be taken a bit more seriously if we started calling it what it actually is, which is violence. Violence against our resources, violence against species, and violence to our children.

The folk singer’s unique voice, coarse as the gravel of the land he’s defending, is offset by a metallic ‘clanging’ in the background – a perfect representation of the harsh attack on the earth while softening his voice and lending an authoritative elegance to his tone. A carefully constructed culmination of heartbreaking dismay and ignored calls to action, this track is truly a depiction of past and future combined.

A single bursting at the seams with environmental emotion, the album quickly turns to a collection of Glier’s political views, strong and pushing. From fracking to the death penalty, this album is both a lesson about contemporary politics and his own vendetta blended perfectly to peak interest and awaken the fury in his fan base – and, hopefully, further.

Soon to be with us in Austin, you can find him at the Cactus Café on November 11th.

Author: Megan Matthews
GMD Three

Eric Tessmer’s Birthday at Mohawk Recap

After spending the past few months touring the country in support of his latest self-titled EP, Eric Tessmer returned to Austin Saturday night to celebrate his birthday at Mohawk. The Texas heat didn’t keep a few hundred of Tessmer’s closest friends from enduring a face melting display of guitar swinging acrobatics from the 2017 Black Fret nominee.

Soulful, alternative rockers, The Selfless Lovers, were the first to wish Tessmer a happy birthday as the local three-piece rocked their debut set on Mohawk’s ‘big boy’ stage. Vibrant frontman, pianist and lead vocalist, Nik Parr, kicked-off the evening’s celebration with an easy going, key-driven melody that walloped into a funky 9-minute freestyle jam session. Parr showed off his multi-instrumentalist range by swapping back-and-forth from keys to saxophone throughout the performance while guitarist Daniel Kerner and drummer Daniel Warner painted the soundscape with blends of funk (‘Slave to The Dollar’) and upbeat alternative rock (‘Glad To Be Here’) along with pleasant hints of soul and R&B.

Next up was 2016 Black Fret alums and my new favorite band, Swimming With Bears. This nu-soul, alternative rock foursome has been around the Austin scene since 2012 and have even opened for greats likes Weezer and Panic! At The Disco. Oddly enough, Saturday was my first time catching Swimming With Bears live and damned if I wasn’t blown away. Lead vocalist and bassist, Joe Perry’s resonating, tenor pitched vocals were an intoxicating surprise as he belted through EP heavyweights ‘Shiver and Crawl’ and ‘Without a Plan’. Swimming With Bears is a truly cohesive band that gels on all levels as lead guitarist Alec Conte and rhythm guitarist Jon Kerr swing in and out to provide vocal support behind Perry’s soothing howls. Their stage chemistry is smooth and harmonious and it’s evident these guys have spent countless hours together creating music with a purpose.

Shortly after 11:15 a central Texas cyclone ripped through the Mohawk as the man of the hour, Eric Tessmer, hit the stage unleashing a whirlwind of electric psychedelic licks from his brand new pearly Stratocaster. Draped in his customary blue jeans and a greaser Mickey Mouse three quarter sleeve straight out of Two-Bit Mathews’ closet, the rocking bluesman is one cool mother fucker up on stage. Think James Dean meets classic Marlon Brando with a little Billy Gibbons grit. An abstract thought, sure, but it makes for one badass blues-rock guitarist that can seduce a crowd for hours with a wicked fast repertoire. Tessmer was three songs and nearly fifteen minutes deep before he decided to check in with the crowd. All’s well from the packed venue as the crowd pulled their jaws from the floor to roar back towards the stage. A powerful three-minute solo on the tail end of ‘Buttons & Thread’ echoed into bluesy ‘See You Tonight’ before Tessmer completely cut loose with ‘Ms. Fortune Teller’.

It’s during his live performances where Tessmer can really dig into the depth of his uncanny musicianship by squeezing every infectious ounce of enjoyment from each track through intense, blistering solos. In Tessmer’s words, “The band has to kick the shit out of the studio record when they play it live.” No doubt about it, Tessmer did just that and more Saturday at Mohawk and it made for one spectacular birthday performance.

Images below by Corey Mendez

Swimming With Bears


Eric Tessmer






Photo Credit: Corey Mendez

Jake Lloyd Drops Syrupy Sweet ‘Str8nge Frute’ Single

Soulful, sensual and slinky, Jake Lloyd’s immersive voice and steamy sounds make a song shaped for the sundown.

The R&B inspired ‘Str8nge Frute‘ awakens those evening time vibes through its deep, delayed tempo, bringing relaxation to the forefront. In contrast however, the songs abrupt halts, slaps, and consistent bursts of ‘Wild Thoughts’ style electric guitar riffs lingering hushed in the background, deliver an intense sense of sexiness. It’s the perfect song for your bedroom playlist.

Although the instrumental plays strong alone, Lloyd’s syrupy vocals are what really brings the track to life. Storytelling about a romantic interest and their sexual encounters, confidence oozes from both the cocksure lyrics and his impressively slick pitch transitions.

Lloyd’s ‘Str8nge Frute’ is the first record to be released from his upcoming album, Jake Lloyd LP. After previously performing in numerous bands as the frontman, Lloyd knew he was on the verge of something huge. Despite counting R&B, Soul, and Hip-Hop as some of his influences, Jake Lloyd insists he doesn’t conform to a musical box. With this in mind, and his remarkable first single, Lloyd’s debut LP is set to be unique and completely unmissable.





Written by: Beth Judge

Lexi & The Bleached Roses Reinventing the Texas Music Scene with Sweet Desire

Who said violins were exclusively for classical music? Certainly not Lexi Cardenas. Lexi and The Bleached Roses have been reinventing the central Texas music scene by proving that classical instruments can do it better.

The Austin-based band started challenging the norms of indie rock music after Lexi, lead vocalist and violinist, decided that forming a band was the perfect idea. Initially starting to record their debut album, Sweet Desire, as a solo artist, Lexi soon realized that creating an entire album by herself was extremely hard work. She enlisted the help of Cello player, Mario Salas, and by the end of the album recording had an entire band to help her out. Lexi admits she’s learned a lot of important lessons during the recording process, saying “I’ve learned I cant do everything myself, and that’s okay”.

After being classically trained in music for 21 years, Frontwoman Lexi sure has a lot to give. Starting her training aged seven, she progressed to play in her first band, The Texas Fiddlers, during high school. This stage during her music career was clearly a defining moment, as she describes, “that’s where I first learned about amplifying my violin and a completely different kind of audience.” After continuing to learn more about pushing the boundaries of music at college, the band is where she really let her creativity shine, saying “This group is a culmination of all the styles I’ve learned.”

The band’s debut album, Sweet Desire, takes a real twist from the classical instrument stereotype. With the music ‘driven more by layers and instrumentation’ the group truly broaden the horizons of indie rock, country, and Americana vibes. The band’s inspirations are plentiful, counting Arcade Fire as one of their top influences. Mo from the band describes, “Bands like that make me want to work harder to be a better musician.”

The album’s title is based around the featuring track, ‘Sweet Desire’. It’s a completely honest track, based around Lexi’s “road to self discovery”. A song about accepting yourself and embracing self confidence, the country twang is pure, her vocals are authentic and the hint of indie gives it that courageous vibe. The song is truly representative of Lexi coming into her own, as she states “This song describes a pivotal point of my life where I decided to stand up and just be myself.” Other tracks on the album include ‘Not Your Girl‘, a stripped back, tough, girl power song. It begins with just Lexi’s strong vocals and her violin, before the songs depth bulks up as it progresses.

Beside the album’s success and popularity, Mo offers his advice to aspiring musicians, encouraging “Don’t let anyone get in your way or tell you, you can’t do something or that your dreams and goals are unrealistic. I’m a true believer that hard work pays off”.

With their debut album released and under their belts, the band is already looking well into the future and beginning plans on album number two. Mo says “I’ve really been diving into songwriting right now anticipating our next album” Mo anticipates it’ll be even better as they look to ‘challenge themselves as a band’. After reflecting on her past experiences, Lexi predicts a fruitful future for the band, as she says “I’ve played in so many projects over the years, but this one I feel has the greatest potential.” As well as a new album, the band promises a stage tour too. Mo assures us, “it’s going to be a lot of fun”.




Written by: Beth Judge


Photo by: Andrew Bennett


Mike Melinoe’s “Phase Face Moonlight” is Pure Fire

Austin-based hip/hop artist Mike Melinoe reinvents fire in “Phase Face Moonlight.” The single features a flowing beat, a galactic adventure, and an armada of flamethrowers. The Detroit-turned-Austin artist pulls from several sounds, relying on a quirky, one-of-a-kind type delivery to attract listeners. Well, the flamethrowers aren’t hurting either.

“Phase Face Moonlight” originated during a time of duress for Melinoe, and the feverishly stressed syllables capture the essence of struggling. Art is too often thought of to be for others, and Melinoe has shamelessly made it known that this is for him, and those that do understand his abstract art, however, can see the vision in full view. The lyrics can be playfully typical at times, but he strays from the pack when it comes to the overall message and delivery. Niles Mack produced a beat that almost sounds like it could be from Yoshi’s Story. It sounds astronomical, yet still comes across as laid-back once you throw Melinoe’s crazed poetry over it.

The video, released August 16, has a light-hearted sense of fun that derives from Melinoe and his friends being able to goof off together. The clip is homemade in fashion, which only adds to the charismatic feel of the video. Carefree dancing from Melinoe and his posse holds the screen, but is broken up by flashes of Saturn’s moon, a spaceship, and Melinoe doing his thing in front of a moving truck. A distortion wraps the screen at key points to highlight accents and to keep from monotony setting in. Melinoe, who is also a talented painter, likes the independence that comes from producing art. Whether he’s the next Picasso or the next DMX, he’s certainly a treasure to be admired in a world of conformity.


Written by: Sawyer Click

CAPYAC Leaves a Lasting Impression With ‘Fade Out’

Chilled, smooth yet strong, and deliciously satisfying. Just like a good drink, CAPYAC’s Fade Out is a song best served over ice. The low- key track with a lasting impression is the perfect accompaniment to a nonchalant night spent with friends.

Inside an almost too trendy bar where the clientele look almost too cool is exactly where this track belongs. With a range of mingling genres on one track, sounds of Hip Hop, R&B, and electronic music make this track completely unparalleled. Soulful sounding vocals and bursting blows of brass uniting with sci- fi sounding electronica, somehow make the perfect synergy. The slick feature of Austin MC, RuDi Devino drives the music well into both mainstream and hip- hop territory. The sheer variety of cooled down characteristics with vibrant vibes makes this a top chilled track for almost any ears.

Unlike CAPYAC’s Bubblegum and much more like Talk About, it won’t leave you wiping beads of sweat from your forehead on the dancefloor, but it will leave you with a similar radiant glow as the playful tempo and sunshine beat fills you with carefree bliss. The band couldn’t have devised a more fitting title for the tune. From the very first beat the stress and anxiety of modern day reality simply fizzles and fades out, transporting you to a worryless wonderland.

CAPYAC’s sense of fun and imagination that’s pumped endlessly into their music makes their records the perfect form of escapism. With their music already catching the attention of fans in Europe, Korea, and Japan, it’s no doubt that their future in music is anticipated to be fruitful. With the bands notorious sense of quirk, their summer tour is set to be truly unmissable.

You can catch CAPYAC’s tour across the US from August 22nd 2017 at the following venues.

Aug 22 – Nashville, TN – ACME Feed & Seed
Aug 24 – Hot Springs, AR – Maxine’s
Aug 25 – Tulsa, OK – Fassler Hall
Sep 7 – Austin, TX – Mohawk



Written by: Beth Judge

Kady Rain Takes Us To Paradise With Her Latest Single Plus Photo Recap Of Kady Rain At The Blackheart

We’re all aware of who Kady Rain is now; she’s the sun in the sky, the beat in our step and the breeze on the ocean – we quickly realized, when we got a chance to sit down with her here. Since our chat, she’s been busy. Teaming up with the Australian ‘bubble-gum pop producer’ Donatachi, the Candyland Queen released her latest song on August 18th.

The track, ‘Take Me’ highlights the sugar-sweet star’s crisp tone, and impressively offers a clean electronic rhythm – busy and gloriously intricate but still submissive to her vocals, reassuring the already obvious; nothing will outshine Kady Rain.

Her synthesized-sounding vocals lay atop of the energized, fresh beat; while undeniably intended for those warm summer nights, it’ll still be there to accompany you all the way through to the chill of autumn. Speaking directly to Rain’s bright, eccentric self, this song fits beautifully with her candy-coloured dynamic – only making her pairing with Donatachi even more idyllic.

A bright and infectiously happy love song that could warm you whatever the temperature, Donatachi found inspiration from Ryan and Marissa’s relationship in the cult-classic The OC – could it get any better?

Keeping along with the busy month Rain’s had, she performed at The Blackheart earlier this month, pouring her heart out in each bright note she sang. Check it out in the photo recap of the night below!


Check out Kady Rain at Austin Pride this year, on August 26th!

Insta: @KadyRain
Twitter: @KadyRain

Author: Megan Matthews
Photography: Corey Mendez

Wilco Releases Benefit Track in Response to Violence in Charlottesville

In the wake of last weekend’s violence in Charlottesville, VA., Wilco has released a new benefit song called ‘All Lives, You Say?’ via their Bandcamp page. The song title references the “All lives matter” response to the Black Lives Matter movement and was released Monday night. Although no direct reference is made to the tragic events in Virginia, Wilco’s intent with ‘All Lives, You Say’ is clear.

“My dad was named after a Civil War general, and he voted for Barack Obama twice” states songwriter Jeff Tweedy in a post accompanying the song. “He used to say ‘If you know better, you can do better. America – we know better. We can do better.”

The acoustic country track loops along at a surprisingly mellow pace driving attention towards Tweedy’s metaphorical lyrics. “All lives, all lives you say/ I can see you are afraid / Your skin is so thin / Your heart has escaped.”

‘All Lives, You Say?’ is dedicated to Tweedy’s father, Robert L. Tweedy, who died earlier this year. All proceeds from the song will be donated to the Southern Poverty Law Center. The benefit single can be purchased for $1 from Wilco’s Bandcamp page. Catch Wilco live at Bass Concert Hall in Austin on October 1st.



Exclusive Track Premier: That Girl Dre’s latest single ‘Follow’

“What’re you smiling at?” snarled an angry, man on a New York subway.
“What aren’t you smiling at?” Dre Mazzenga hit back, her happiness steady and, I’m pretty sure, constant.

A tenaciously cheerful girl, Mazzenga’s no stranger to the music scene having released her debut EP ‘Do Me Right’ in 2014. Three years and more than 60,000 streams later, the promise of a new single from That Girl Dre approaches with the mysteriously titled ‘Follow’.

Best described as footsteps across a forest floor of crisp, fallen leaves laid over a distorted piano ballad, reminiscent of a wedding, opens the track. Dramatic yet elegant, spicy vocals cut through the melody, stinging the air on the cool Autumn day I can’t help but imagine, altering the song. An emulsion of an almost eerie beginning slams into an amplified breathlessness; seduction and a level of desperation define the sound. For such a happy-go-lucky girl, Dre impressively portrays a mass of emotions in ‘Follow’.

“It’s the story of ‘I do love you but now is the wrong time’, states Mazzenga. “I feel like those words are the kiss of death for so many women, myself included. It just hurts so bad because you love someone so much and want it to be right now’. I tried to write the song from that place of chasing a love that’s just out of reach.” She explained when she spoke to me about this single; her voice coarse from fiercely rehearsing.

Mazzenga has poured her heart into ‘Follow’ to ensure you’ll feel comfort and not isolation in her lyrics. A metaphor for her personality, she’s a warm and affable person; it’s hard not to feel you’ve found a friend to confide in.
Once a resident of a sleepy cul-de-sac in the New York suburbs, Mazzenga found herself feeling the same as many young girls do; a yearning ache to get to the city. Once in Brooklyn, she met Tracy Sampedro – the future drummer of Dre’s namesake band and one of her biggest motivators. Always filling notepads with songs she’d written, she found herself in a common conundrum for many budding artists; musically talented but far too shy – Sampedro helped to change that, encouraging Dre to live ‘outside of her own brain’.

A car accident and a back injury later though, she found herself swapping her stand up piano for a keyboard she could play in bed, “as I was popping Advil and recovering from my injury!” she laughed, ever the easy-going, devil-may-care attitude.

Everything I had done before was suddenly so difficult, and it really made me re-examine my life, like why do I live in New York City, do I have to live here, do I have to do the work I’m doing, and the answer to most of these things was no, I don’t have to. So, I thought ‘screw it, I’m moving to Austin’.”

It’s very easy to get caught up in the day-to-day, and well I’m supposed to get up at 8, and I’m supposed to drink this coffee and I’m supposed to, supposed to, supposed to and before you know it your life has passed. I think it’s important that each of us finds who we are and then be willing to unleash it. Don’t be bashful about it, don’t apologize for it. I want to spread that everywhere.

Her sharp, mellifluous vocals and emotional lyrics are already enough to add ‘Follow’ to my playlist. But, it’s Dre’s benevolent personality that sealed the deal on this soon-to-be household name. Each aspect of That Girl Dre works harmoniously together, and they will continue to with the future singles on the horizon. Get excited, and stay that way.

Catch That Girl Dre live:
Friday, August 18th 2017 at Antone’s (Austin TX), 8pm
Portion of proceeds to benefit SIMS Foundation
Ticket link: smarturl.it/toodamnhot

Dre Mazzenga – Vocals, Keyboard, Producer, Music, Lyrics
Jet Jaguar – Bass, Vocals, Producer, Music, Lyrics
Tracy Sampedro – Drums, Producer, Music, Lyrics
Dalton Jackson – Guitar

Follow – That Girl Dre


Author:  Megan Matthews