The Pons’ CD Release Party

Yesterday, Dan told us about a great CD release party going on tomorrow night for the Preservation. Tomorrow, though, is a hell of a night for live music, and there is a second great CD release party happening for the Pons over at the Highball. Their new disc, The Blackest Shine, has already garnered a rave review from Chris Apollo Lynn over at my favorite local blog, Republic of Austin, and it continues to build momentum in the run-up to the official release tomorrow. So you know I’m going to have to weigh in, right?

Since I started being honest with y’all in my last post, I have to admit that I’ve only heard The Blackest Shine all the way through once. And this isn’t because it’s a slog to get through – the Pons manage to maintain a consistent tone throughout the album without ever getting too repetitive. (The song “Gene Hackman Dream” – track 8 – had a lot of French Connection references; I’m definitely going to have to revisit that one.) Instead, I’ve just been so taken with the first three tracks that I keep going back to them over and over. I really just can’t get through everything else because I have to hear those first three again.

The Pons - Someone Else's Voice

The record starts off with the title track, “The Blackest Shine,” which has to be one of the great Austin singles of the year. It’s got a great haunting minor tone that is complemented well by a reverb-heavy piano line and some ethereal backing vocals. Yet, the song’s forward momentum is relentless. It rocks heavily from start to finish, carrying the listener along whether they want to come or not. It really does shock me that a station like 101X hasn’t picked up on this song yet since it fits so well alongside the Black Keys and the Toadies. “Someone Else’s Voice” follows it up with another propulsive minor-y song with one of my favorite lines of the year: “Even the hungriest artist can become full of himself.” Zing! They utilize dynamics perfectly here, and have a chorus that bucks traditional chorus structure ever so slightly. Then, “Impossible Love” shows that the Pons can do ballads too! The drums continue to be a huge factor in giving the song that head-bobbing feel, as lead singer Thomas Mazzi croons in the chorus like we haven’t heard yet on the album.

It’s a compelling and enjoyable listen, and the show tomorrow night at the Highball (which is FREE, did I mention that earlier?, and features great openers in Stereo is a Lie and the Sour Notes) promises to be a great time. And if you want to hear the album in full, you can check it out at the Sonicbids website here.

– Carter