Happyness release their self-produced debut album, Weird Little Birthday, in June. The album follows their eponymous debut EP released at the beginning of this year, to great critical acclaim. The album is not quite a concept album about a boy who shares his birthday with Jesus Christ and eventually is driven insane with jealousy. It was largely recorded in the band’s own Jelly Boy Studios, after a brief session recording first track “Baby, Jesus (Jelly Boy)” in an abandoned church was cut short by the bitter cold and an unconvinced congregation of the dead. The record was mixed by Adam Lasus (Yo La Tengo, Daniel Johnston) and features Ed Harcourt with vocals on “Pumpkin Noir”.
The EP drew comparisons with bands synonymous with college slacker rock – the album, while putting the band at the forefront of, wait for it, ‘jangle-gaze’ displays a more melancholic, introspective nature. The youthful exuberance of “It’s On You” is still there, but the album expands on that sound, as if dealing with the morning after as well as the night before, and how, alas, not everything can invoke a dream house party soundtracked by Pavement.
DANGER RON & THE SPINS
Four-dude rock band Danger Ron & the Spins lives in Minneapolis, MN. Their self-titled genre “danger rock” is influenced by heavy listening to bands like Modest Mouse, The Cribs, Lonnie Walker and Harlem. They are always recording new material and forever forgetting the old stuff. Catch ’em in a city near you in 2015.