By Michael Swanger firstname.lastname@example.org
Birds & Batteries
Velvet Blue Music
San Francisco-based Birds & Batteries’ third full-length release, “Panorama,” is appropriately titled given the fact that it grants listeners a wide angle view of the band’s pop-rock sound that has been described as “art rock-meets-Tom Petty.” To be sure, lead singer Michael Sempert’s vocals resemble those of Petty’s on some songs like “A Million People” and “The Machine & The Vampire,” as do his ironic lyrics and the band’s unhurried backbeats. Equally intriguing is Sempert’s channeling of artists like Harry Nilsson, ELO and David Byrne on other tracks like “Raincheck,” “The Villain” and “Some Hypnotic Flash.” Rarely does organic rock and electronic pop come together so effortlessly as it does on “Panorama,” something to keep in mind next time you’re looking to expand your music collection.
(Birds & Batteries play Thursday, March 24 at 8 p.m. at the Vaudeville Mews. $5.)
Texas Hippie Coalition
Red General Catalog
Don’t let the name Texas Hippie Coalition fool you. There’s nothing here that suggests peace, love or psychedelia on the band’s latest album “Rollin’” after listening to hard rock songs like “Pissed Off and Mad About It,” “Cocked and Loaded” and “Back From Hell.” To the contrary, perhaps the only thing this “Band of Outlaws” has in common with the hippie movement is smoking copious amounts of weed and proudly displaying an anti-establishment attitude that might resonate with fringe audiences. But it’s the music that really puts Texas Hippie Coalition on the outskirts of the mainstream with its unusual hybrid of influences it wears on its tattooed sleeves, including Lynyrd Skynyrd, Molly Hatchet, Motley Crüe and Pantera with a dash of screamcore.
(Texas Hippie Coalition plays an all-ages show Thursday, March 24 at 5 p.m. at the House of Bricks. $15.)