Darling New Neighbors
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Darling New Neighbors

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To call [Darling New Neighbors'] sound all over the map doesn't do justice to their eclectic prowess -- DNN trades in everything from whimsical pop to quirky cabaretish accordian, to driving guitar fuzz, . . .[with] constantly unexpected musical shifts. Likewise, the tales they unfold are as oddly turned and surprising as the arrangements, bursting with grit about drugs and sex or teenage wistfulness and wearied longing.

http://www.austinsound.net/2009/10/19/sound-off-darling-new-neighbors/ - Doug Freeman, Austin Sound


DNN isn't afraid to start a food fight, throwing it all at the wall to see what splats on its second LP. The Austin trio's genre-skipping once again produces 1980s love, country, doo-wop, and punk, quirked up by Elizabeth Jackson's violin, accordion, [and] honeyed, hiccuped vocals. The core trio manages eclecticism with small doses of humor. [I]ts accordion take on Neil Young's "Only Love Can Break Your Heart" is quite charming. [3-star rating, of 5]

http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrobase/Issue/review?oid=oid:816620 - Audra Schroeder


Rocket, the new CD by Darling New Neighbors, is an absolute smorgasbord of goodies. There are no boundaries confining [their] talents . . . within narrowed indie parameters. [T]here awaits pop, rock, gypsy, folk, and Latin-esque adventures leaping from track to eclectic track, all done with everyone switching up instruments and contributing vocals.

Of course, a CD this fun and chock full of a myriad of styles would not be complete without a CD release extravaganza that is just as colorful: . . . epic drumming and dancing by The Austin Samba School, Latino punk rock awesomeness by Pinata Protest, the kickin’ MC Sweet Tea, and international folk dance ensemble Kolorash.

Holy smokes. This promises to be a most extraordinary CD release shindig. Check. It. Out.

http://texasmusicmatters.kut.org/2009/08/21/darling-new-neighbors-cd-release-show-this-saturday-at-carousel-lounge/ - Laurie Gallardo, KUT


The people of Austin, TX are lucky to count Darling New Neighbors as one of their children. The trio are an interesting sound of mixed genres, sometimes even in one song, brought together by their love of music.

The most outstanding song on the album is the Latin-laced "Tango". The lyrics touch on macabre while demonstrating Shakespearian attention to words as a demonstration of love. [Jackson's] talent for writing lyrics is refreshing and original. Should they ever get out my way on tour, I'll definitely go check them out. Do yourself a favor, listen to "Tango" and enjoy it. When are you gonna find a tango song as original as this again? [ 8.5-star rating, of 10]

http://survivingthegoldenage.blogspot.com/2009/10/darling-new-neighbors-rocket.html - Adas' Grabowski


The Darling New Neighbors . . . could be the missing link between the Pixies and Belly, but with a classical twist and a penchant for old time dance music.
This album is a serious contender for best lo-fi release of 2009.

http://blogger.xs4all.nl/werksman/archive/2009/09/26/521112.aspx - Here Comes the Flood (blog)


It's official. The winner of the Monitor Mix Video Blog Theme Song Contest is: Darling New Neighbors!
Darling New Neighbors' members hail from Austin, Texas, and consist of Elizabeth Jackson (vocals, accordion, bass, violin), Amy Moreland (lead guitar, bass, vocals) and Karl Lundin (drums).
Congratulations to Darling New Neighbors, and thanks to everyone who voted.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/monitormix/2009/08/and_the_winner_is.html - Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney)


The impossible-to-pin-down indie/folk/kitchen sink outfit [Darling New Neighbors] . . put a subversive new spin on the old adage you can’t judge a book by its cover.

Musically, "Rocket" is chock full of the contrasts that define the Darling New Neighbors. Although every member of the trio is classically-trained, the group really hits its stride on distortion-drenched rockers like “Lilliput” and “Take It” that connect the dots between today’s lo-fi heroines the Vivian Girls and their alt-rock forebearers the Breeders.

Elsewhere on the album, the band brings the party, tossing in violins, accordions and brass on tunes like the freak-folking “Gasoline” and a polkafied cover of Neil Young’s “Only Love Can Break Your Heart.” However, the lyrics hint at a darker more desperate dimension.

Whatever comes next, you can be sure the band will remain an unpredictable force, confounding every effort to be tied down, pigeonholed or categorized. - Travis Altman


I gave [DNN's] new album, "Rocket," a listen.  And then another.  And another.  So yeah, I’m digging them quite a bit. [With] the catchy, violin-abetted “Gasoline”, my favorite track from the album – the 6-minute, bilingual (!) “Indian Mounds”, [and] a great song about fucking, "Take It", . . . They don’t mince words, these kids, and they’re all-the-better for it.

http://www.theopeningacts.com/2009/10/the-great-inbox-clearance-darling-new-neighbors/ - The Opening Acts


After hearing Saint Etienne’s cover of Neil Young’s “Only Love Can Break Your Heart”, I was sure that I would never hear a better version of the song. I think I have now [with] Darling New Neighbors.

http://eardrumsmusic.com/2009/10/17/lets-meet-the-darling-new-neighbors/
- Knut, Ear Drums Music


Combining hints of punk, disco, Tejano, and country into a rough-hewn indie-pop rubric, the Darling New Neighbors are a highly entertaining trio of fun-loving eclectics with a category-defying sound all their own. In many ways, they recall the freewheeling, three-keg house-party vibe of Austin in the mid-1980s. Formed in 2004, DNN built a steady stream of acolytes with knee-slapping lyrical snark and crafty stage shows that have encompassed everything from a 22-piece male chorus line singing show tunes to fully orchestrated doo-wop numbers.

Although the Neighbors’ performance aesthetic is easygoing and off-handed, it's girded by real musical weight: Jackson is a classically trained violinist and avid accordionist, while Moreland combines classical training in guitar with a longstanding love of bluegrass.

http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrobase/AMDB/Profile?oid=oid:171384 - Greg Beets


Discography

1. Self-titled EP (2005, self-released)
2. "Appetizers and Leftovers" (2005 compilation by I Eat Records, with Okkervil River & Phosphorescent)
2. "Every Day is Saturday Night" (2006, I Eat Records)
3. "Rocket" (2009, self-released)

Radio airplay: KUT, KROX, KOOP, KVRX (Austin), KTRU (San Antonio), WXRT, WLUW (Chicago), KDHX (St. Louis), Aligre 91.3fm (France), CFRO (Canada), WMUL (West Va.), WUOG (Athens), WQFS (N.Carolina)
Streaming: NoLoveForNed.com, ChurchOfGirl.com, BagelRadio.com, C-89.5 (Seattle, WA), StraightUpQueer.com

Photos

Bio

Comparisons fall fast and loose with the Darling New Neighbors, who play upon a soft-hard smash like The Breeders and lo-fi predecessors, the Raincoats. They're eclectic without being diluted, genre-mixing without getting lost.

The Neighbors (DNN) were born in 2004, when Elizabeth, a classically trained violinist with roots in the Dirty South, met bluegrasser with a heart of rock-and-roll, Amy Moreland. Drummer Karl Lundin, who teaches the children with an actual music degree (a.k.a. license to kill the skins), recently became the band's magical third element.

Since then, DNN has built up a reputation for a gripping and ever-unique stage-show, over the years hitting up some Black Eyed Peas or the occasional male chorus line. A typical set jumps from accordion disco, to a 60s-era crooner, to full-on, growling punk-- reeling in a stylistic frenzy that teeters on the edge of collapse. One blogger compares DNN's sometimes-manic tendency to "if Sleater-Kinney played gypsy folk" (Cows Are Just Food). Apropos, DNN recently won the bloodsport "Monitor Mix" song competition, curated by Sleater-Kinney's guitarist, Carrie Brownstein, for NPR.

Their first full-length, "Every Day Is Saturday Night" debuted nationally in 2006 on I Eat Records to critical acclaim. Best-of-the-year lists at "The Austin Chronicle" and "The Big Takeover" respectively proclaimed the album a "sharp-witted folk-punk-disco bouillabaisse" (Greg Beets) and "like a laidback but constantly surprising sort of party" (Dave Heaton). At "Amplifier Magazine", Brian Baker captured DNN's death-defying genre-bending by declaring them "impossible to pigeonhole musically. . . . If you're trolling around Austin for Daniel Johnston, you'll be pleasantly tweaked by 'Every Day Is Saturday Night'."

In 2009, Darling New Neighbors followed up with their second full-length, "Rocket", which is gaining notice on the heels of its October release. With "Rocket", DNN steps up both its production quality and its stylistic tenacity, exploring a healthy range of nodding, accordion folk, lyrical wise-assness (a la Vic Chesnutt), and poignant moments, culminating in a Caribbean take on Neil Young's dirge, "Only Love Can Break Your Heart". Lauded by Austin Sound for its "eclectic prowess, trading in everything from whimsical pop to quirky cabaretish accordion, to driving guitar fuzz," the album appeals to both indie pop auteurs and anointed practitioners of Rock. As "Ghettoblaster Magazine" approaches it: "Although every member of the trio is classically-trained, the group really hits its stride on distortion-drenched rockers that connect the dots between today’s lo-fi heroines the Vivian Girls and their alt-rock forebearers the Breeders."

Never lulling into a melodic complacency, DNN happily confronts its punk, feminist progenitors: the X-Ray Specs, the Raincoats, Patti Smith, and Bikini Kill. For example, DNN's trash-punk "Take It" offers a primal female version of sexual aggression. Other highlights of the album include the masochistic, Latin-flavored "Tango", the love as flash-burning resource, "Gasoline", and the psychedelic, girl-group layers of "Stars". Former drummer, Reid Faist, penned the pop-gem cum addict's-lament, "Sydney."