ShannonAndTheClams YearOfTheSpider 73106

SHANNON & THE CLAMS

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Year of The Spider

(Easy Eye Sound)

Shannon & the Clams manages to buoyantly ride the waves of grief on the band’s sixth studio album. Produced by the Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach, the grungy punk quartet completed Year of the Spider just before the COVID-19 lockdown and in the wake of personal tragedies. Singer and bass player Shannon Shaw said it felt “like the end of an era.” The effervescent tracks cope with death on intimate and universal scales while celebrating making it through. They sing about “poisonous potions” (“Midnight Wine”) and seek relief with psychedelic shimmy shakes. It’s a dark doo-wop beach party that’s as heavily reflective as it is good for letting go. –Rachel Reed

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 ORA THE MOLECULE

Human Safari

(Mute)

Within the opening lines of Human Safari, Nora Schjelderup utters, “Who got the ball?” Thus, listeners become entrapped in a world full of wonder as the rest of the album plays out. Ora the Molecule’s debut is a collection of upbeat, funky sounds that are spritely enough to make you want to dance. Combined with the self-reflective and pondering lyrics of tracks like “Sugar,” “I Wanna Be Like You,” and “Silence,” Schjelderup contemplates essential ideas around life, love, and self over an array of genre-bending, pop-fueled instrumentals. Human Safari is an impressive first look at Ora the Molecule’s artistic capabilities. –Sydney Jackson 

These reviews originally appeared in the Fall 2021 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today! 

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