Blogaholic weekend, part two
New music roundup
Three new albums I like a lot:
Crystal Stilts do the Psychocandy
thing on their new Alight of Night
, with songs that sound like 45s played at 33 rpm. Sludgy pop music, done very well.
[mp3] Crystal Stilts - "Prismatic Room"
School of Seven Bells, on the merits of Alpinisms
, have been getting a lot of comparisons to Cocteau Twins. Yeah, they’re pretty ethereal or whatever, and while their singer of course can’t compare with Elizabeth Fraser, they compensate by pumping their songs full of dense world-y sounds. The band is opening for M83 (whose Saturdays=Youth
is as fab
as ever) at the Triple Rock in a couple weeks.
[mp3] School of Seven Bells - "Connjur"
David Byrne and Brian Eno’s first collaboration in 27 years is not another collection of groundbreaking rhythm tracks and weird voices (a la My Life in the Bush of Ghosts
), but rather a lovely set of monolithic pop songs, called Everything That Happens Will Happen Again
. Byrne’s voice will no longer leave you feeling jittery, and the whole affair recalls another smooth and easeful Eno collaboration, 1990’s Wrong Way Up
with John Cale.
[mp3] David Byrne & Brian Eno - "Strange Overtones"
And some other good ones I’ve heard recently:
Jay Reatard’s music is way more palatable than a certain image
of him in nothing but underwear and fake blood initially led me to believe. There are some garage rock gems (and a Deerhunter cover) on his new collection Matador Singles ’08
, whose cover
is a shrine to the 7” (floating in a bathtub) and Reatard’s vanity.
Times New Viking’s follow-up to this year’s fantastic Rip It Off
is a very quick EP called Stay Awake
. Even the poorest musicians no longer need to settle for such shitty production, but these guys insist that the lo-fi era isn’t over yet. They just like to sound that way, and I like what they do.
I’m From Barcelona had a collection of preternaturally cute pop songs on their nice debut, Let Me Introduce My Friends
. You might get the impression they’ve gone all gloomy on Who Killed Harry Houdini?
, but in fact it’s another set full of melody and togetherness. Opener “Andy” is sort of haunting, but only to the degree that a song by a band of two dozen Swedes can sound haunted.
Gang Gang Dance are rhythmically pretty complex, but they’re hooked on synth-pop synths, so the end result of many of the songs on Saint Dymphna
is sort of like Erasure’s instrumental “Sixty-Five Thousand” or any of their 80s club remixes. Gang Gang Dance don’t bother with vocals, but they don’t make it easy for you to dance.
--------------------------------------Note: All these albums are available for download from WMCN’s e-mail account, or can be found on CD on the new music shelves. I’ll try to burn copies of the good stuff for the booth ASAP.