Tag » music reviews
Gotye’s highly-anticipated third release Making Mirrors (out now on Samples'n'Seconds/Fairfax/Universal Republic) is filled with percussion-driven songs in a wide range of compositional styles. Recorded in a barn down under in remote Australia, Belgian multi-instrumentalist Wouter "Wally" De Backer creates an intricate, expansive sound on what's sure to be a breakout album (FYI: Gotye is pronounced "Gauthier," from the French translation of Wouter). The lead-off title track is a quiet one-minute introduction, with layers of echoing vocals over waves of synths. Read More
Let January 31, 2012 be known as the day that it happened: the day that Born to Die (out now on Interscope) finally dropped. After months of furious Internet opining, illegal downloads of leaked tracks, tons of grainy live footage, and one questionable Saturday Night Live performance, we now have an entire record of moody, lilting pop songs with which to rightfully judge Lana Del Rey. So what is the verdict?  It is—wait for it—not that bad. Some of the songs, in fact, are actually pretty good. Read More
Korallreven doesn’t sound like anybody else, but if I had to try, I'd say they're like a lover’s caress on a sunny afternoon with just a little bit of Enya and a touch of Ace of Base. On their full-length debut An Album by Korallreven (out now on Acéphale), the Swedish duo’s unique sound incorporates ominous undertones with optimistic, uplifting soundscapes of epic proportions. Lead vocals are steady and robotic, flanked by choir-like backups. This is all filtered through (what I suspect are) keyboards, synthesizers, and more synthesizers. Read More
If “Time Travel,” one of the more delightfully sinister tracks on Blouse's self-titled debut, is to be believed, the band has the ability to fluidly travel between present, past, and future. The album (out now on Captured Tracks), which sounds nostalgic and fresh all at once, confirms this assertion. Charlie Hilton’s lead vocals hover somewhere between Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier and Beach House’s Victoria Legrand, while the melodies she glides over veer from fuzzed-out Depeche Mode to popped-up Suicide. Read More
Despite the title, Brite Futures’ new album Dark Past (out now on Turnout) is anything but gloomy. The Seattle-based band (formerly known as Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head) split from Warner Bros. and have since moved on to indie label Turnout, a move that underlies some songs on the new record. The quintet of Claire England, Shaun Libman, Luke Smith, David Price, and Conor Sisk may have a new name, but they can still bring us an album full of dance-worthy tunes ripe for singing along and blasting at high volumes. Read More