Sunday, December 26, 2010

Tracks of the year III

Male Bonding - Weird Feelings [YouTube] [Soundcloud]
Bring on the fuzz! And something rock and roll that's older than the hardcore and grunge influences people are quick to throw at the Sub Pop trio.

Maps & Atlases - Solid Ground [YouTube] [Spotify]
From an album, Perch Patchwork, that felt it was nearly there but got fatally distracted, the sound of an analogue TV On The Radio or what happens when math gets reined in to being pop.

Maybeshewill - To The Skies From A Hillside [YouTube] [Spotify]
Previously they could be lushly open with a hint of danger, or they could be full-on heavy riffola with a hint of reconciliation. Here, they're both.

Mew - Do You Love It? [Soundcloud] [Spotify]
The new song, time sig changeable and propulsively enigmatic as ever, from a low-key best of called Eggs Are Funny. Never have got the hang of album titles, Mew.

MGMT - Brian Eno [YouTube (live)] [Spotify]
A song about being chased through the woods by a vengeful Brian Eno that sounds like the Television Personalities. And then people wonder why they don't sell as many records any more.

The Middle East — Blood [YouTube] [Soundcloud]
It didn't seem to happen in the post-Fleet Foxes world in the way many expected, maybe because their records came out last year in their native Australia. Obviously that doesn't mean their fluttering crescendoing folk-pop of many parts should be overlooked.

Moscow Youth Cult - Girls Of Boredom [download via TLOBF] [Soundcloud]
8-bit electronics as dark, fuzzy and prone to distortion and jumpiness as a degraded VHS tape. Quite easy when you can just c'n'p something you wrote for somebody else, isn't it?

Past Lives - K Hole [Myspace] [YouTube]
Most of The Blood Brothers regroup to update the outer edges of 1981 and all the No Wave and SST that implies.

Peggy Sue - Watchmen [YouTube] [[Spotify]
These sorts of harmonies aren't usually used in the cause of something so barbed, nor does acoustic music get as full-on intemperate as the bridge does.

Pulled Apart By Horses - High Five Swan Dive Nose Dive [YouTube] [Spotify]
Sounds painful.

Quasi - Little White Horse [YouTube] [Spotify]
Maybe filling out the sound so much wasn't great for them in the long run, but they can still put out punchy college radio necessary roughness.

Roky Erickson - Goodbye Sweet Dreams [Soundcloud] [Spotify]
Okkervil River lend a sympathetic hand in backing the once self-destructive 13th Floor Elevator, whose singing and sentiments might break your heart.

Rumour Cubes - The University Is A Factory [Soundcloud] [Bandcamp]
Skyscraping instrumental post-rock with violin, viola and electronics touches both pensiveness and catharsis.

School Of Seven Bells - Windstorm [YouTube] [Spotify]
They're never as quite as good as you might hope, but the sandstorm loop and airy vocal make this one work.

Screaming Maldini - The Extraordinary [Myspace] [Spotify]
Think we wrote this reminded us of Alphabeat the first time we heard it. Now it reminds us of Dogs Die In Hot Cars. The truth lies somewhere between these two points.

Sleigh Bells - Riot Rhythm [Soundcloud] [Spotify]
An exhausting listen, that album. Here they do what MIA couldn't and find an unhappy medium between noise, beats and offhand vocals.

So Many Dynamos - Keep It Simple [YouTube] [Spotify]
The forceful ADD American post-punk band who didn't make the music press break.

The Sound Of The Ladies - What We Did With Our Lives [Bandcamp]
The bloke off Answer Me This! turns out to be a quietly wondrous singer-songwriter, poetically wry and acutely melancholic.

Spectrals - Peppermint [YouTube] [Spotify]
Louis Jones' output brings whole new dimensions to the concept of hit and miss. Here he delivers sweetly swinging rock'n'roll, and it's a comfortable hit. Well, it would be, it wouldn't be in this list otherwise.

Spencer McGarry Season - Great Enemies [Myspace] [YouTube]
Anti-robot scree from former power-pop trio turned double figure membership showtune baroque collective.

Stairs To Korea - All Of Your Friends [YouTube] [Bandcamp]
One man and his armoury of pedals is all very well and good, but it's not much use without a poetic heart.

Stars And Sons - If It’s Good For Me [YouTube] [Spotify]
Bravely rescuing piano pounding pop from Scouting For Girls.

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