Friday, November 11, 2016
The album kicks off with the punk fury of "Look Around". By track three, "Heart Line" we are in heavy rhythm new wave territory. Other highlights are punky "Evil", the new wave anthem
"Mirror Mirror", and the glittering "Tess".
Hi-Tec Emotions are Ema Dunstan (vocals/keys), Jess Lakatosh (bass), and Mackenzie Randall (drums). Hard to Handle is out now via Listen Records.
Bandcamp for Hard to Handle
Arborist is an band fronted by Northern Irishman (Co Antrim) Mark McCambridge, a man who infuses power in his music via lyrical content and carefully layered instruments, rather than by volume. There are people who give such quiet music little attention. In our view, if that attitude causes people to ignore Arborist's debut LP Home Burial, those people are missing out on some great music. McCambridge's stories are lucid and flowing with excellent word-smithing. He has an eye for darkness, but the phrasing and arrangements don't allow the proceedings to become unbearably weighty. The overarching themes are home and death, with related topics such as ageing, sadness, funerals, and fractured families. McCambridge is equally comfortable composing in indie pop/alt folk and country veins, and the 11 tracks on Home Burial include both. One of the most engaging of the country-tinged offerings is "Twisted Arrow", which features Kim Deal.
While never loud, the album is rich in details, from various guitar styles to horns, piano, and strings. While my preference leans to the tunes with fewer country elements, especially "I Heard Him Leaving" and "A Man Of My Age", there is not a bad song in the set, and "Twisted Arrow" is a gem. Make note of it, Arborist is a budding star.
In addition to McCambridge, the players on the album are Richard Hill, James Heaney, Ben McAuley, Johnny Ashe, and Luke Bannon. Home Burial is out today via Kirkinrola Records in CD, LP and digital formats.
The album contains warm Tropicalia, then skittering percussion, then dancing grooves, then someones hallucination set to glorious music. Add in some drone and a dash of techno. And pop music that dissolves into something else, and then pops out of the closet and says "boo, I'm pop again". None of it comes at the time, or from the direction, you expect -- perhaps a bit like the musical equivalent of watching changes images in a set of changing warped mirrors. But nevertheless, it all comes at a time and from a direction that is better than what you expected.
Get up and move forward with Virginia Wing.
Forward Constant Motion is out as of November 11 via Fire Records.
Bandcamp for Forward Constant Motion
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
The project is the brainchild of vibraphonist and pianist Toby Danzer, who dreamt he was asked to tell the tales of ancient Greek gods. Toby's accepted the challenge, and chose to fulfill it via instrumental soul music with the assistance of some of New York's best musicians. And the results are fantastic -- vibrant, evocative soul music that manages to connect with the listener despite the absence of any spoken words. Pazner and company set the stage, provide the backdrop and inspiration, and let your mind paint the rest of the picture. It is indeed digital magic, my friends, and you owe it to yourself to give The Olympians a try.
In addition to Toby Pazner, The Olympians are Thomas Brenneck, Dave Guy, Leon Michels, Micholas Movshon, Homer Steinweiss, Michael Leonhart, Neal Sugarman, Aaron Johnson, and Evan Pazner.
The Olympians on Twitter
Bandcamp for The Olympians
Daptone Records page for The Olympians
Monday, November 7, 2016
Matinee Recordings page for the album
Sunday, November 6, 2016
Pure Moods have arrived. The trio comprised of Adam Madric, Alex Lahlie, and Wyatt Knowles features a wealth of experience with other Melbourne bands, but this self-titled LP is their debut together. Featuring well constructed guitar pop varying uptempo songs with more languid arrangements which may remind the listener of fellow Melbourne band The Ocean Party, the band delivers a consistent and worthy addition to the formidable roster of indie bands from their home town. The harmonies are sweet and recall a sunny afternoon spent in the backyard with musician friends, a case of beer and some inspiration. Admittedly, it isn't all sunshine, and "From My Pocket", in particular, explores less happy moments. But happy or sad, this is a set of songs to cherish.
We have a few of our favorite songs from Pure Moods to showcase the goods.
Order page for album