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There's nothing quite like fuzzy, sexy, catchy rock 'n' roll -- and that's just what Austin, Texas band Megafauna specializes in. The new track "Time to Go" is 3:37 of pure seduction.

"Pitch Black" has pretty much everything fans of Saddle Creek band PUJOL love -- a loud, lo-fi rock groove, poppy call-and-responses, experimental noise, hand claps and Dan Pujol's strung-out voice and equally strung-out wit.

Fear not. Evil Forces isn't another black-metal band skulking out of obscure reaches of the Nordic lands. Evil Forces is a folk group from Jyväskylä, Finland, and its sound, especially on the plaintive, wintery "Parcels of Sleep," couldn't be more inviting.

With nods to the New York Dolls and the Stooges, the glam-punk sound of Brisbane, Australia band the Furrs reaches peak snarl and fuzz (and is that a banjo being beaten into submission?) on the new track "Get on Your Horse."

Recorded at San Francisco's semi-legendary Tiny Telephone studio, "Bad Trip" by Secret Cities is the sound of an indie-pop band coming into its own. More noisey than twee, more tuneful than coy, the track would fit right in on a playlist anchored by Camera Obscura or Rilo Kiley.

The strange and tragic story of actress Frances Farmer has inspired numerous fellow artists to tell and retell her story. One of the most moving is surely Kurt Cobain's "Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge on Seattle," originally recorded for Nirvana's "In Utero" album, and here given a harrowing interpretation by UK duo the Honey Ants.

San Antonio band the Rich Hands isn't afraid of its influences. "I wanted it to be everything I love about KISS," singer Cody Mauser has stated of the new track "So Fine." Rock 'n' roll mission accomplished, and more.

Drenched in horns, group harmonies and a bit of guitar jangle, "Another Song" by San Francisco band Adios Amigo has the kind of expert, joyful '60s pop sound that could clear the darkest clouds from the darkest skies.

With a voice that's past the breaking point and strumming that's past the point of lightness, Sam Morrow skips the dancing and immerses himself in the dark of one of Bruce Springsteen's most beloved songs.

Call it "folkstep" or "dubpop," the music of Morning Ritual -- a collaboration between composer Ben Darwish and two twin sisters, Katelyn and Laurie Shook, known as (aka the Shook Twins) -- is both highly conceptual and highly pleasurable. The new single "So Cold" has a warmth and harmonic intricacy that defies categorization.

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Local Artist Spotlight


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