Monday, July 30, 2012

July 24 Releases

Okay, this is nearly a week late, but I have an excuse. I was obsessively researching guitars in order to find the right flatpicking guitar. Having listened to a lot of Doc Watson over the past year, and after all the festivals I went to this summer, I discovered that I actually really enjoy good flatpicking. I’ll try not to let things like this delay my listening again.

Today’s listening will be broken up by Annabelle Lee by Sarah Jarosz to allow each album to live in the same context.

Fang Island – Major

5 of 5 stars

Foot moving pop/rock with big harmony vocals. It’s hard not to be in a good mood listening to this. Tons of layers, melodies, and counter-melodies combine to make me want to dance like a happy fool.

Golden Retriever – Occupied with the Unspoken

3 of 5 stars

Continuous stream of interesting electronic textures. It almost feels like the whole thing is an introduction to something else. As it’s well executed, I’ll give it a three, but going beyond that would be like saying that a book of beautifully typeset lorem ipsum is on the same level as even a poorly printed copy of King Lear.

Grasscut – Unearth

4 of 5 stars

Many-layered modern pop. Textures and electronic grooves sitting behind mellow pop songs with a bit of post-rock style. It’s pleasant to listen to, but not earth-shattering. A very solid contribution to this space.

Lawrence Arabia – The Sparrow

5 of 5 stars

Fantastic grooves behind excellent songwriting. Dynamic and engaging arrangements that are perfectly suited to each song.

Micachu and the Shapes – Never

2 of 5 stars

Fills the sonic space up with a lot of transient-heavy sounds. The overuse of intentional dissonance, out-of-phased sounds, and tape effects distracts from what could have been decent songs and makes the album nearly unlistenable.

Passion Pit – Gossamer

4 of 5 stars

Hook-filled modern original programmed pop. Pop songs done the way songs should be done, with production that supports rather than detracts from the core of the songs.

Purity Ring – Shrines

2 of 5 stars

Overuse of reversed samples, too much reliance on sub-bass, and nothing noteworthy from the songs themselves… Not an impressive album.

Slug Guts – Playin’ In Time With the Deadbeat

4 of 5 stars

Raw and invigorating music. Brings something fresh to the conversation with a combination of heavily surf-influenced but dirty guitars, decidedly contemporary rhythms, and enough reverb to fill an olympic-size pool.

The Gaslight Anthem – Handwritten

3 of 5 stars

Anthemic rock that balances a modern rock influence with classic stadium rock. It doesn&8217;t bring anything new to the discussion, but it isn&38217;t just a rehash of the same old. An fun and enjoyable album.

Young Moon – Navigated Like the Swans

4 of 5 stars

Simple interwoven lines produce movement behind evocative songwriting. Enough bell-like tibres and reverb to feel like I’m drowning in a glacial lake, but by some miracle, I don’t mind.

1 comment:

Alex Parisi said...

Good reviews. Keep it up!