Saturday, September 30, 2017

Weekend Music Roundup

The weekend has arrived and brought both the rain and the end of the heat wave with it. But the heat lingered all this past week, and as a result, I geared my listening to the summer weather. There's quite a mix of things in here, and a lot of artists who I hadn't heard before. All in all, it was a nice week of discovery before I settle in next week with a lot of new releases from old favorites. The Fall always brings high profile albums, and I'm excited to begin listening to them. Enjoy.

Laucan - Frames Per Second: The debut album from the London based singer songwriter was released over the summer and is a beautiful piece of indie folk. There's a sadness that permeates throughout this record, which I'm definitely partial to. It reminds me a lot of The Microphones, without the experimental elements, so I suppose, more like Mount Eerie. "I Want Out," "Symptom," and "The Tree (Came Down)," were my personal favorites on this quality record.

Matt Pond PA - Still Summer: The Philly indie band's new album follows last years wonderful Winter Lives. Departing from the melancholy folk vibe of that album, which fits the season of the title, this is a more upbeat indie rock album which fits the season of its title. Whereas the folk album held a unique sense of honesty that I really appreciated, this album, while it has less of that quality, is still quite special. It begins fairly formulaic, but by the end, builds into a thoughtful look at the concept of summer past and present. I still like last year's album better, but that could simply because I far prefer winter to summer. "Rabbit," "Last Breath," "Canada," and "Union Square" were my favorites.

Black Grape - Pop Voodoo: It's been 20 years since Shaun Ryder's spin-off band last released an album, and 10 since his main band, Happy Mondays, last released a record. Not much has changed in the passing of time. More than 30 years into his career, Ryder is still creating catchy Baggy Madchester tunes that attack the mainstream sentiments. As always, this is a fun listen, but as with the last HM album, it's really one of those one or two listens before it gets shelved and forgotten. "Money Burns" and "Losing Sleep" were standouts. 

Oddfellow's Casino - Oh, Sealand: The fifth album from the Brighton based indie band is pleasant piece of neo-psych that, unlike American bands of the genre which draw from '60s influences, draws more from BritPop influences. It sounds like a mellow Suede or Coral in their quieter moments. "Down in the Water," "Children of the Rocks," and "Penda's Fen" were my personal favorites on this thoroughly enjoyable album.

Felly - Wild Strawberries: The L.A. rapper's second full length album is a blissful bit of hazy summer beats and laid back flow mixed with an R&B vibe that all somehow just clicks in a way that is welcoming to my ears. Certainly not revolutionary, but certainly a sound that is rare these days. Reminds me a bit of Digable Planets first album because it combines R&B soul with hip hop the way that album did for jazz and hip-hop, but this album has a decidedly California feel to it. "Baby Boy," "Above Water," and the fantastic "Oceans V2" are standouts on this ray of sunshine.

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