Amoeblog

Albums Out March 26: Wavves, The Strokes, The Cyclist, and More

Posted by Billy Gil, March 26, 2013 11:07am | Post a Comment

Album Picks:

 

Wavves - Afraid Of Heights

Wavves Afraid of HeightsCD $13.98

LP $22.98

Wavves’ latest album album mostly ditches the “King of the Beach” surf-punk notions of previous releases for a big, warm, alt-rock embrace that does wonders to highlight the quality of Nathan Williams’ songwriting. “Sail to the Sun” starts out with sparkling synths and moves into a thumping, surging rocker. “Demon to Lean On” is built for rock radio, with a catchy, two-note riff leading into its soaring chorus. It’s reminiscent of mid-’90s radio gems from the likes of Weezer and their brethren, but it’s also smartly built, with watery guitars and castanets seeping beneath the surface of its Pixies-inspired, quiet-to-loud dynamics and Nathan Williams’ paranoid lyrics. After starting out boldly, the album takes dark turns that should please fans of Wavves previous work, including the lo-fi attack of “Mystic,” which buries Williams under stacks of distorted sound before engaging with a singular synth riff. But he always brings it back to some of his hookiest songs yet, like the soaring title track, which makes use of backup vocals by Jenny Lewis and delivers another instantly recognizable, could-be radio hit from 1996. If only all pop-punk, surf-alt or what have you was this catchy, smartly written and unafraid of hooks! Afraid of Heights succeeds as Williams’ clearest bid yet for crossover success, yet it doesn’t sacrifice his essential slackery appeal. File it next to your Dookie, Blue Album and Doolittle records and embrace the fuzzy pop of Afraid of Heights.

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Weekly Roundup: Young Prisms, The Cyclist, Hanni El Khatib, Mikal Cronin, Rhye, Kisses, Glow Marrow

Posted by Billy Gil, February 7, 2013 03:31pm | Post a Comment

Young Prisms – “Runner” video

Young PrismsS.F.’s Young Prisms have released a video for the song “Runner,” from 2012’s In Between. For the uninitiated, Young Prisms combine hushed, reverbed out vocals with pop melody, lush synthesizers and crisp, Sonic Youth-esque guitar lines They share some elements in common with S.F.’s Tamaryn, with whom they recently toured, like the pop counterpart to Tamaryn’s oceanic soundwaves. If you haven’t yet checked them out, here’s a great place to start. They’re at the Echo in L.A. March 15 and the Chapel in S.F. March 16.

 

The Cyclist – “Visions” video

The CyclistThough he hails from Northern Ireland, producer The Cyclist has joined the fold of L.A.-based Stones Throw and Leaving Records, who recently signed a distribution deal for Stones Throw to distribute Leaving Records titles. The mind-expanding “Visions” appeared on Dual Form, a cassette release celebrating the deal and Leaving Records’ catalog. It will also appear on The Cyclist’s upcoming debut LP, Bones in Motion, releasing March 26 via Stones Throw/Leaving. The song is accompanied by a dizzying array of colors and images that makes up its great video, directed by Miko Revereza.

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Weekly Roundup: DaVinci, Feeding People, Plateaus

Posted by Billy Gil, November 1, 2012 12:40pm | Post a Comment

DaVinciDaVinci – “Cheeba” (featuring Ammbush, Main Attrakionz and The Jacka)

“Walk with a limp like Jason Voorhees.” Perfect line for just after Halloween. That comes from this spacey hip-hop track by Oakland’s DaVinci, with some great fluctuating production sounds from producer Keyes. He’s already released tracks such as “Nothin Finna Stop Me” as well from the upcoming The MOEna Lisa, due Nov. 6 from SWTBRDS.

 

Feeding PeopleFeeding People – “Island Universe”

Feeding People released a 7” of their sweet indie pop tune “Island Universe” last month, and now that song has gotten the remix treatment by Free the Robots featuring Phil Nisco. It’s the rare remix that completely reimagines the song and does so successfully — this time highlighting the song’s sci-fi potential, given that title, reminiscent of camp classic This Island Earth. Listen to it at LA Record. Both the original and remix are available to download at Amoeba.com.

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