by: Martim Galvão
La Machine - Phases & Repetition - (Castleface)
This is a reissue of La Machine's short lived psychedelic fuzz, straight from the 90's. A lo-fi masterpiece created by some crazy Rhode Islanders, the album was essentially forgotten until Castleface decided to reissue it. Welcome back, La Machine.
David Lynch - The Big Dream - (Sacred Bones)
Legendary multimedia artist David Lynch is back with a follow-up to his 2011 solo debut, Crazy Clown Time. His latest effort touches on a wide range of styles, mixing reverb-laden vocals and guitar with a cinematic production quality and electronic drums to create something he describes as "modern blues."
Travis Bretzer - Making Love - (Mexican Summer)
Breezy, playful music on the subject of orange juice and prefab sprouts - that's Canadian Travis Bretzer's brand of guitar pop. With 60's and 70's rock vibes close by, Making Love is an enjoyable listen.
All Tiny Creatures - Dark Clock - (Hometapes)
The Wisconsin quartet draws from a wide range of influences and employs some slick production skills to deliver an extremely danceable and imaginative pop album. A worthy follow-up to their 2011 release, Harbors.
Blake Hazard - The Eleanor Islands - (s/r)
The Eleanor Islands is a two-year effort by Blake Hazard (one half LA-based group The Submarines), spurred by a desire to come to terms with her break-up from husband and bandmate John Dragonetti. Slow and polished yet restless, the album offers an captivating take on introspection.
Various - PDX Pop Now 2013! - (s/r)
The 10th annual compilation from the all-volunteer nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting music from Portland. Although the title may conjure memories of infomercials for "Now That's What I Call Music Vol. 138", the content speaks for itself. Check it out for a nice sampling of those weirdos up north.
Jackson Scott - Melbourne - (Fat Possum)
The debut LP from college dropout Jackson Scott, Melbourne is a weird blend of psychedelic pop, noisy textures and dashes of kraut, punk and surf. Lo fi lovers behold.
The Love Language - Ruby Red - (Merge)
For the band's third release, frontman Stuart McLamb has assembled over twenty musicians to put together a collection of pop songs that explore heartbreak through a collage of lo-fi soundscapes.
The Octopus Project - Fever Forms - (Peek-A-Boo)
The Austin experimental pop band is back with its fifth studio album, a set of 12 dense, multilayered pop jams complete with frenzied beats and soaring guitarchestra. Closer in spirit to 2007's Hello, Avalanche LP than 2010's Hexadecagon, Fever Forms is a pop-friendly journey into indie electronica.
Bombadil - Metrics of Affection - (Ramseur)
The fourth release from the Durham, NC indie quartet combines plucky acoustic strings and southern hand claps with pop production quality and layered vocals for 13 tracks of proper indie folk.
T. Hardy Morris - Audition Tapes - (dangerbird)
T. Hardy Morris, best known as the frontman for Souther psych-rockers Dead Confederate, releases what he calls a "sit down record" full of nostalgia and sympathy, all wrapped up in his world-weary vocals.
White Dove - The Hoss. The Candle - (R+D)
The debut album from the California trio sees elements of soft-rock, psychedelia, and classic California rock come together create an ethereal and lush collection of dark-pop songs.
Weekend - Jinx - (Slumberland)
The now Brooklyn-based trio delivers their first release sine 2011's Red EP. Combining elements of pop, post-punk, and shoegaze, they manage to create a soundscape of driving beats and buried vocals that sounds both ominous and soothing.
Coke Weed - Back to Soft - (s/r)
A departure from the band's folk rock sound, Back to Soft is a look at nostalgic look back at the haze of 1990s New York City. Twinning electric guitars and a mesmerizing rhythms section escort you through memories American undergrounds and the allure of American Bohemia.
San Cisco - s/t - (Fat Possum/RCA)
Decidedly bubbly and upbeat, the self-titled release from Australian indie darlings San Cisco doesn't fail to put a smile on your face, even when the lyrics aren't exactly chipper. Check it out for top-notch production quality and uncontrollable foot-tapping effects.
Bare Mutants - The Affliction - (In The Red)
Building on the talents of frontman Jared Gummere (The Muggles, Defiles, Guilty Pleasures, The Ponys), Bare Mutants delivers a minimal, mid-tempo wall of tranquil sound with their debut LP. For fans of the current Brooklyn sound, this Chicago quintet's mesmerizingly fuzzy album is definitely worth a listen.
Silver Firs - EP#1 - (Oh, Sister)
Hailing from Berne, Switzerland, The Silver Firs deliver an amalgamation of dreamy folk, psychedelia and tropical rhythms with their latest EP. The Alpine group follows a strict DIY credo when it comes to recording and producing.
The Jim Jones Revue - The Savage Heart - (Punk Rock Blues)
The fourth LP from these hard rocking Englishmen falls somewhere between the rock and roll stylings of Little Richard and the stripped down energy of The Stooges, all while maintaining an electric presence.
Flaamingos - s/t - (Felte)
The self-titled release from LA-natives Flaamingos is a pounding analog rumble created by drum machines, echo-laden synths, and jangling guitars that falls somewhere between danceable synthpop and dark post-punk. Do check it out.
Fuck Buttons - Slow Focus - (ATP)
Slow Focus is a the completely self-produced LP from the British duo of Andrew Hung and Benjamin John Power. Described by Power as an alien, malevolent landscape, I find it hard to disagree. Weave your way through this dark, complex soundscape and who knows where you'll end up.
Grant Hart - The Argument - (Domino)
Hüsker Dü founder Grant Hart has been a staple on the indie music scene for three decades. In his latest release, the songwriter has created a concept album based on William S. Burroughs' re-imagining of James Milton's epic Paradise Lost. Complex, theatrical, and at times dark - this is an ambitious and worthwhile record.
Julia Holter - In The Green Wild - (Domino)
A sneak peek at Julia Holter's forthcoming third album Loud City Song, "In The Green Wild" is an impressive example of great orchestration and classical influence in the world of pop. Plenty of ideas to chew on from this track.
Arthur Beatrice - Carter EP - (Vertigo/Capitol)
A great example of a how having two vocalists can richen the texture of a group's sound. Soft but crisp, distant but intimate, this is a good EP for setting an enigmatic mood.
Superhumanoids - Exhibitionists - (Innovative Leisure)
This trio of Angelenos produces dreamy electronic pop that seems to have been born from the buzzing, lights and haze that defines nightfall in LA. R&B undertones and a driving groove ensure your feet won't stay stationary for too long.
The Mallard - Finding Meaning in Deference - (Castleface)
Distorted, reverbed-out, and seemingly melting into some sort of pissed-off pop, Finding Meaning in Deference is a sharp display of how to bop without a smile on your face.
Fur Trade - Don't Get Heavy – (Last Gang)
Steve Bays (Hot Hot Heat) and Parker Bossley (The Gay Nineties) were looking for a way to do yacht rock with a heavy impact with their latest effort, Don't Get Heavy. Whether they've succeeded in creating a new type of yacht rock or not, the duo know how to throw down some electronics-laden indie wonders.