Archives for February 2009

Yagya – Rigning

Maybe it's just me, but I've been waiting for a dubstep album to finally hit me the right way. I think I must be one of the few that wasn't bowled over by either of Burial's albums and I certainly had an even harder time with Kode9 and Spaceape. It isn't because I didn't like the music. It's because for some reason I still can't  get into the kind … [Read more...]

Adam Balbo – Big Kid Now EP

Adam Balbo is definitely a likable guy.  His songs are cute and the performances are loose and fun.  This isn't enough to make him important, but at a time in musical history where every asshole with a guitar is writing the same hackneyed trash, Balbo, at the very least, has personality. The title track is literally a song about a kid who's … [Read more...]

M Ward – Hold Time

So busy with his extracurricular commitments these days - notably as the male half of She & Him and as a production aide for the likes of Rilo Kiley's Jenny Lewis - Matt Ward's own solo career almost feels like it's the side-project, not the day-job.  This isn't necessarily a bad thing however; as it has allowed Ward to both develop his muse … [Read more...]

Hi Red Center – Assemble

It’s easy to review an album when you love it, and it’s nearly as easy when you hate it. When you’re unsure, however, even after repeated listens, you’re bound to start a review discussing how hard it is to write. Hi Red Center is tough to categorize, their music tough do describe. And Assemble is an album that can be tough to listen to. That’s … [Read more...]

Barr – Skogsbo Is The Place EP

If you are a fan of Brendan Fowler, the man behind BARR, you're in the wrong place.  BARR is from LA.  Barr is from Sweden.  BARR sounds delightfully ironic in their delivery of dry beats and sing-speaking.  Barr plays soft folk music.  That BARR is interesting and unique.  This Barr is boring as hell. You might think this comparison is just a … [Read more...]

b°tong – Structures

The story unfolds like this: an experimental electronica musician is overwhelmed by the experience of visiting, in summer no less, a hyperborean ice palace in the far northern recesses of Sweden. Said musician also developed a soft spot for early industrial textures and pioneering ambient soundscapes over the past 10 years while cutting his teeth … [Read more...]

The Soundscapes – Freestyle Family

The Soundscapes -- two brothers in New York City via Brazil -- released Freestyle Family at the tail end of 2008 during the wintertime holiday frenzy. If you missed its arrival and you're a fan of heartfelt (but not sappy) indie-rock music, you owe it to yourself to check it out. It's a gem. The CD at first listen might earn a shoegaze tag … [Read more...]

Beirut – March of the Zapotec/Realpeople Holland EP

At the very young age of 23, Zach Condon’s Beirut is an impressive band. What first started as a safe-haven for Condon to record music under, Beirut has released two excellent albums with 2006’s Gulag Orkestar and 2007’s The Flying Club Cup. But what one doesn’t realize is just what an impressive musician Condon is. His ear for melody is something … [Read more...]

Various Artists – Dark Was the Night

Cementing their 20th anniversary of raising AIDS awareness, the Red Hot Organization enlisted the help of The National’s Bryce and Aaron Dessner to curate and craft their 20th compilation, Dark Was the Night. Named after the Blind Willie Johnson song and featuring an all-star cast of some of the best and finest musicians currently making music, … [Read more...]

The Long Lost – The Long Lost

Alfred and Laura Darlington have been producing music together in various forms for around fifteen years now, whether as the electronic based Daedelus and Flying Lotus projects, or as the lo-fi acoustic Sa-Ra, or indeed as The Long Lost. This fourteen track album isn't their first release under this name, and as fifteen years is quite a measure of … [Read more...]