Scouting for local music talent can be a tough proposition: you want to support your scene, but you can only listen to so much crap before totally hitting a Wale. On the cusp of their new album drop, we asked Paul Thornley, axeman for local indie it-group US Royalty, to design a playlist of some of DC's lesser-known, listen-worthy acts:
Bluebrain: Up and Down
Paul's "longboarding song" of choice, this fast-paced, piano-heavy electric diddy's from the group named for the first comprehensive attempt to reverse-engineer the brain, which may become necessary after an attempt to longboard with headphones in.
Bird Lips: Comeback Kid
Armed with meager savings and an 8-track, the stripped-down "primal" folk duo draws inspiration from dinosaur-ic groups like T-Rex and Joni Mitchell.
Deleted Scenes: Fake IDs
From dudes bringing an "intensity and tightness on stage", "Fake IDs" gradually builds in head-bobbing melodic harmonies, also found on Paul's other favorite Deleted Scenes track "Ithaca", though the latter's super boring without the former.
True Womanhood: Dignitas
This trippy, haunting ditty's laden with timpanis and various homemade instruments, which necessitated it being recorded in the "Death By Audio" effects pedal factory (their best seller: The William Hung Pedal).
Aaron Thompson: Bethany Lane
A bluesy/folksy tonal slice of Americana, the singer-songwriter's soft spoken raspy-ness is highlighted in the half-whispered "Bethany Lane", though he ought to be more proud to sing about a street that inflation hasn't made totally irrelevant.
Midnight Kids: Night Walk
Rocking an "eclectic sound with humming guitar lines that weave in and out of the vocals", this (semi) supergroup's a collab project from Lulu of Thievery Corporation and the Apes -- a combo you'd admonish as "damn dirty", if only you could get a real person on the phone.