Amoeblog

Where My Ears Went in 2012

Posted by J. Mark Beaver, January 10, 2013 01:33pm | Post a Comment
sandro perri impossible spaces
SANDRO PERRI Impossible Spaces
(Constellation Records)

Easily the most confounding sound I heard this last year. In all truth, this record was released in late 2011, but I didn't find any indicators pointing towards it until this year. Perri is a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, producer from Toronto, Canada who also creates electronica under the name Polmo Polpo. On Impossible Spaces, Perri presents a light, meandering soul in a voice that sometimes reminds me of Michael Franks, sometimes Antony, sometimes Christopher Cross. It's a strange tone to hear in 2012, but it is all couched and wrapped in, levitated and nudged along by a busy production of electronica, (fretless?) bass, warped keyboards and processed saxophone that keeps pulling my ear deep into its sheer inventiveness. Guaranteed to confuse.








MOUNT EERIE Clear Moon
((P.W.Elverum & Sun)  

One of this year's two "sister" releases (with Ocean's Roar), Clear Moon, is issued, as it should be, on clear vinyl. Phil Elverum, the creative force behind Mount Eerie and its former incarnation, Microphones, is a master of mood. His albums are for headphones, for closed eyes, akin to sitting alone (or with silent friends) in the forest or on some chilled rocky outcropping from where you can see no sign of civilization and yet always aware that its there.
mount eerie clear moon

New End of the World Music!

Posted by Billy Gil, December 21, 2012 01:33pm | Post a Comment

Are you as sick as I am of seeing “It’s the End of the World as We Know It” quoted on Facebook? Here are some newer tunes inspired by the end of the Mayan Calendar.

Dent MayDent May – “2099”

Just released this week, Mississippi indie pop great Dent May has released a dance-pop track inspired by the end of the world — which will take place in 87 years, apparently (actually that seems sort of plausible). “Are you afraid of what tomorrow’s gonna bring?” he asks before declaring “If we all die by a nuclear war/We’re gonna go out on the dancing floor.” Dent May’s Do Things was released this year on Animal Collective’s Paw Tracks label, it’s great and super underrated, check it out!

 

 

Hunter HuntedHunter Hunted – “End of the World”

L.A. band Hunter Hunted have released this video to their KCRW-touted track “End of the World.” Despite its Road Warrior look, they make the apocalypse seem like a lot of fun. They’re at the Troubador Feb. 12.

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Albums Out 10/9: Tame Impala, Ty Segall, MellowHype, Django Django and More

Posted by Billy Gil, October 8, 2012 07:00pm | Post a Comment

Album Picks:

Tame ImpalaLonerism

tame impala lonerism

LP $19.98

DL $9.98

CD $11.98

Whereas Tame Impala’s awesome first album, Innerspeaker, was all about muscle, on Lonerism the Australian band tends to build its psych-rock songs more deliberately, more delicately. But they still kick ass, and hard. “Be Above It’s” titular refrain is whispered over a tumbling drumbeat until Kevin Parker takes off with a simple, Beatlesesque melody and he and his cohorts supply fuzzed out psychedelic flourishes. Thanks to Parker’s high, nasal voice, those comparisons to John Lennon keep coming, on songs like “Apocalypse Dreams,” where Parker’s vocals and melodies certainly are reminiscent of the Fab Four, but musically they’re no mere worshippers at the psych throne, more interested in squeezing strange, new sounds out of familiar territory and taking their arrangements through multiple tempo changes, broiling them through effects, laying moogs and synths over them and then looping back to the original melody like deja vu. Tame Impala also prove adept and producing the straightforward rock single on “Elephant,” which may draw comparisons to The White Stripes for more than just its title, but whose bass-heavy sound really pulls more from psych originators like Blue Cheer — just hookier. Parker, who produced the first Tame Impala record, as well as the recent, excellent release by Melody’s Echo Chamber, finds perfect sonic kinship in David Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev), who can be known for helping to dramatically change a band’s sound (Sleater-Kinney’s mindblowing The Woods, for instance) but who mostly seems to help Tame Impala sound even fuller, allowing the band’s punchiness to come through in tracks like the pop psychedelic wonder of “Music to Walk Home By,” but thickening it with layers of space-rock sound. The end result is that Lonerism hits hard but leaves a lasting impression, leaving the listener to wrap his or her head around all the wondrous sounds of the record and immediately wanting to track back and listen again.

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New Preorders: Ty Segall, Muse, Bat For Lashes, Taylor Swift and More

Posted by Billy Gil, September 19, 2012 04:50pm | Post a Comment
flying lotusFlying LotusUntil the Quiet Comes – Oct. 2
 
The latest from the L.A. sound maestro features contributions from Erykah Badu, Laura Darlington, Niki Randa, Thundercat and Thom Yorke.
 

 






the vaccinesThe VaccinesCome of Age – Oct. 2
 
The second album from the NME-touted Brit punks.
 









 
MuseMuseThe Second Law – Oct. 2
 
The Britpop group turned arena rockers’ next album may have an electro edge, given its first single, “Madness.”

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Weekly Roundup: The Soft Moon, Horrid Red, Oh No/Chris Keys, Paw City; Videos from Julia Holter/Nite Jewel, Ty Segall, Luna is Honey

Posted by Billy Gil, September 14, 2012 01:24pm | Post a Comment
soft moonThe Soft Moon – “Insides”
 
More new Soft Moon! “Insides” is gloriously creepy, with its sustained, Gremlin-style whispered vocal hovering in the background like a ghost, while the foreground finds piercing new wave sound and Luis Vasquez stepping out of the shadows just a bit with a wordless sounding but emotive vocal. Along with the recently debuted “Die Life,” Zeros sounds like a winner; it’s out Oct. 30 on Captured Tracks (preorder here). Boy, all this great goth from S.F. Isn’t it like beautiful and everyone is nice there?
 



horrid redHorrid Red – I’m Terribly Hurt

 
I don’t know much about S.F.’s Horrid Red, but I’m incredibly intrigued after hearing “I’m Terribly Hurt,” a goth pop song that hits both sides of the coin thanks to that droning organ and soaring synths and breathless vocals both creepy and romantic. Nightly Wreaths is due Oct. 9 on Terrible Records.
 



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