Five must-hear tracks off Dan Shea's Boston Hassle compilation, released on a playable, wearable button Sunday at Great Scott.
This garage-y guitar-and-drum duo appropriately encompass the collection's fundamental DIY ethos; Saralee's surfy 2011 debut demo was home-recorded in Allston, where they regularly play basement shows. "Soft Sounds" is a quick, punky two-minute track with all of the gritty, distorted guitar riffs, moody vox, and dreamy hook-heavy pop charm that's made them one of Allston's favorite new acts of 2011.
Seventy-six seconds is all that's necessary for this odd-pop nugget to crawl into your ears and lay eggs the shape of ukuleles. Angela Sawyer of Weirdo Records and members of Fat Day, Ergot Rot, and Goat of Arms combine to be the aural earwig on this comp, a ditty that creeps into a parallel universe coated in wax and candy dots.
Former Pants Yell! enthusiasts will be stoked to see this hi-fi rendition of "Albert Kroft," which originally appeared on the three-song demo released on Bandcamp last fall by Cuffs (formed by ex-Pants Yell! members when they disbanded in 2010). This new jam maintains their signature classic-'80s indie-pop sensibilities and introspective songwriting.
The most dangerous band in Boston adds some back-alley grit to the Hassle. Live staple "Fine China" finds vocalist/assailant Andy Brown roughing up some intimidating spoken-word threats over a wall of frantic sonic aggression. It spirals into chaos, making it unsafe to listen to walking down LaGrange Street late at night.
"ADDIS ABABA BETE"
After five years of bringing Ethiopian-inspired pop sounds to audiences around Boston, Debo Band recently announced their record deal with Sub Pop's world-music imprint, Next Ambiance. At just under seven minutes, this new track is an excellent intro to the 11-piece (!) group's kaleidoscopic melding of soul, funk, jazz, and pop, with accordion, violins, horns, and drums.
1222 Comm Ave, Allston | December 11 @ 9pm | 18+ | $5-$10 | 617.566.9014 or greatscottboston.com | bodiesofwaterartsandcrafts.bandcamp.com