Tuesday, October 5, 2021

First Listen: New Releases for 1 October 2021

Artist: Liz Lawrence
Album: The Avalanche
Quick Thoughts: Liz Lawrence writes extremely catchy songs, and this album is a loud, brash collection of 'em. If you were lucky enough to trip up on "USP" a few years back, you know what you're getting into here. Criminally underrated, if there's any justice this will be a mainstream hit.
Songs of Note: "Down for Fun," "Babies," "I'll Go On," "Where the Bodies are Buried"

Artist: Christo Graham
Album: Graham's General Store
Quick Thoughts: Ken sent this one over, and, man, I really enjoyed my time with this. It's got an earnest appeal that hits me right in my small town-loving heart. The album might not work for everyone, but if you like roots-tinged folk, you'd do yourself a favor in listening to this.
Songs of Note: "Phone a Friend," "Nothin' Works"

Artist: Molly Payton
Album: Slack
Quick Thoughts: Probably my favorite listen this week. Molly Payton puts together an album of alt-indie that feels fresh and polished, with songs that stick with you. I was singing "You Cut Me So Much Slack"'s chorus all weekend, and it feels like every other song on the album is a winner. Prioritize this one this week.
Songs of Note: "You Cut Me So Much Slack," "January Summers," "While You're Driving"

Artist: audiobooks
Album: Astro Tough
Quick Thoughts: audiobooks has never wasted too much time on trying to be mainstream accessible, but songs like "First Move" certainly make an effort and do a good job of balancing the strange and occasionally hyperpoppy songs. This is a wild album and one I really enjoyed this week.
Songs of Note: "LaLaLa It's the Good Life," "First Move"

Artist: GRMLN
Album: Laughing Shadow
Quick Thoughts: I wanted to highlight this one as GRMLN does some really great understated alt-rock. This album feels like it's from another era in how it's presented, and it's subtly awesome. Give this some time.
Songs of Note: "Los Angels," "Sandcastle"

Artist: Reb Fountain
Album: IRIS
Quick Thoughts: Real late-era Taylor Swift vibes in a few spots of this, most notably the title track. Reb Fountain is not a name I knew a week ago, but is absolutely one I'm paying attention to now - there's a real vulnerability and strength that go hand-in-hand to put something truly memorable together. I'm looking forward to getting back to this one.
Songs of Note: "Lacuna," "Iris"

Artist: illuminati hotties
Album: Let Me Do One More
Quick Thoughts: I loved loved loved the illuminati hotties debut, and the contractual obligation record is what it is. This proper follow-up is a little more manic and a little more robust, but still has the offbeat charm that I've come to expect. Still the best band name in indie rock, and this album has a decent chance of being a deserved breakout effort.
Songs of Note: "Pool Hopping," "The Sway," "Threatening Each Other re: Capitalism"

Of note:

* Ducks Ltd. - Modern Fiction (Repeatedly surprising.)
* Kid Gulliver - Kismet (Great local indie rock.)
* Brandi Carlile - In These Silent Days (Might be her best effort since Bear Creek)
* Velvet Starlings - Technicolor Shakedown
* Karine Polwart and Dave Milligan - Still as Your Sleeping
* Spearmint - Holland Park
* Strand of Oaks - In Heaven
* Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga - Love for Sale
* Boy Scouts - Wayfinder
* Tirzah - Retrograde
* Oompa - Unbothered
* Gustaf - Audio Drag for Ego Slobs
* Kitner - Shake the Spins
* screamcloud - Let's Break Something

* EPs:

* The Great Electric - The Great Electric
* The Persian Leaps - Drone Etiquette
*Hush Kids - Weatherman
* Jane Weaver - Sunset Dreams
* Snts - The Unfinished Fight Against Humanity Remixed
* girlhouse - the second ep
* Woolbright - Carousel
* Oliver Tree and Little Big - Welcome to the Internet

Live albums/Compilations/Reissues:

* Son Lux - Tomorrow's Reworks
* Natalie Bergman - Live at Electric Lady

Also out:

* United Defiance - Change the Frequency
* Ministry - Moral Hygiene

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