Apologies in advance for the bad food analogy I’m about to make. Clearly I’m bitter about the free bag of generic popcorn I just inhaled for lunch (with “insert brand name of prescription drug you can’t pronounce” printed on the bag). Anyway, you could kind of liken the Florida music scene to a Cracker Barrel menu. Don’t get me wrong: I am ALL for some Hickory Smoked Honey Glazed Ham (Backstreet Boys) and cheese grits (Matchbox Twenty). And who knows? Maybe I want to wash down my chicken ‘n dumplings (2 Live Crew) with some box wine (Dashboard Confessional). But Miami synth-rock/electro-pop act Awesome New Republic seems to have just the right amount of pop amazingness without sounding trite (think the electronic bits and driving beats of Miike Snow blended with the psychedelic sweetness of Passion Pit).
Earlier this year, Awesome New Republic — John Hancock, Brian Robertson, and newly-added-for-tour Jorge Rubiera — had a Perez Hilton pop moment when P’rezzers posted a Leighton Meester cover of their track “Birthday.” Side note: Leighton seems to have a knack for hanging with the boys (not that way, pervtown), as evidenced by this summer’s smash Cobra Starship collabo “Good Girls Go Bad” to the literally just-released video “Somebody To Love,” featuring Robin Thicke.
Now, with their brand-new album Hearts, just released on October 27th, and their song “Magic City” (from the previously released EP Rational Geographic Vol. 1) appropriately featured in tomorrow’s Miami-bound episode of The City, Awesome New Republic just might be the best band you’ve never heard of. You’re welcome.