by: Daniel Alavi
Portugal. The Man - Evil Friends - (Atlantic Records)
Danger Mouse produced the thing. Songs are accessible and sonically intriguing. I'm hearing piano, but is it something more? Some of the sounds evoke the feeling that one has heard these songs before, but conscious consideration reminds us that this is new, this is now. What happened to my big sandwich?
GRMLN - Empire - (Carpark Records)
You know that feeling where your whole body is relaxed from a day in the sun and you realize you've been grinning for the past half hour? It's like that.
UCSC brethren delivers hazy uptempo strumming, bouncy bass and simple, contemplative lyrics.
Queen Kwong - Queen Kwong - (Instant Records)
Dancy... fuzzy... roadhouse?
Makes me think of a Shirley Manson fronted Butthole Surfers on a minimalist bent being produced by some disco-cokehead from the mid-seventies... but in a good way.
Dog Party - Lost Control - (Asian Man Records)
Sacramento duo are at it for the third time with more punk, more fuzz, more awesome. They cover X's "Los Angeles" which is cool, but has swears so it's only for you Safe Harbor peeps. Play this record all day long. Jet Pack, Flamingo Go! and Lost Control are good tracks to start with.
Future Bible Heroes - Partygoing - (Merge Records)
This band has a neat name. The record sounds like the soundtrack to a David Lynch fever dream. For realsies, I'm picturing people dancing awkwardly in a room decorated with one-off non-matching furinture pieces in jarringly punchy colors.
John Vanderslice- Dagger Beach - (Tiny Telephone)
Did you feel that? Neither did I. Vanderslice delivers light sounds with doleful and musing lyrics. Songs are loose, meandering... weird in the way that new ground always is. You didn't come here to find the same old thing.
Music for thoughtful people who need a soundtrack for rumination.
Light Heat - Light Heat - (Ribbon Music)
Light, spacey rock tunes peppered with jangle and bendy phaser and delay type effects.
Mellow sounds from Philly... 'boys who don't smoke or swear' vocals... put it on to groove in the evening as the sun goes down and the cocktail glasses come out.