Brand New Music
Alexis Taylor | Beautiful Thing
His first solo record away from Hot Chip that isn’t self-produced, this is the 5th solo offering from Alexis Taylor, and it’s beginning to seem that Hot Chip might be a little more than the sum of it’s parts. While Beautiful Thing shows an artistic side of Taylor that is lost in the individualistic Pop of Hot Chip. There’s no doubting that Taylor is quite an accomplished songwriter and musician in his own right, but it’s the lack of direction, his inherent way of almost over experimenting and losing focus of even the most conceptual ideas. At it’s best this record builds on the more odd attempts at Hot Chip, but at it’s absolute worst is completely self-indulgent, again, losing the line between experimental and engaging.
J. Cole | K.O.D.
Not nearly as ambitious as 2014 Forest Hill Drive but certainly much better overall than 4 Your Eyez Only, Cole has shown his ability of producing decent tracks, but somehow still remains stuck on slow out-dated production and generally uninteresting hooks. Although his relevancy is unchanged, the album suffers from a little too boring, a little too much like everything else around. This record feels stagnant for an artist that took 2 years to produce something to try and live up to his best work, which unfortunately for Cole, is farther and farther in the rearview at this point in his career.
DRINKS | Hippo Lite
It’s a difficult game living on the edge of bizarre. Cate Le Bon has been walking this tightrope her entire career while always retaining a solid foothold on her roots in folk music. Her first collaboration with Tim Presely as the duo DRINKS was back in 2015 with Hermits On Holiday which relied heavily on how weird Le Bon could get with it. The second time around we find the duo for a more raw flavour, something post-punk, very DIY and completely bizarre. The collaboration of these two inhearently weird songwriters is most evident on “Pink or Die” where the interplay between Presely and Le Bon resonant’s clearly. Albums like Hippo Lite don’t get made very much anymore: an album that complete eschews the usual nature of pop music and attempts to take it somewhere completely new – consequences be damned!
Cancer Bats | The Spark That Moves
In going back to their punk roots, this Toronto-based metalcore group has delivered arguably their most enjoyable record to date. Simultaneously melodic and heavy, these are the party punk anthems that Cancer Bats have built a career in creating. Their first record in over three years, The Spark That Moves feels like a Cancer Bats record made exclusively for Cancer Bats fans. The group sounds completely re-energized and after spending the last few years moonlighting as a Black Sabbath tribute band called Bat Sabbath, have developed a new found independence as each track is delivered with blistering intensity. Cancer Bats are back and better than they ever were before.
Post Animal | When I Think of You in A Castle
A great psychedelic trip from this Chicago six-piece. Following a year which featured a pair of teasing EPs that were recorded even before the group found it’s full compliment of members, When I Think of You in A Castle is a record that thrives on exploring as much territory as as many ideas as possible. Overall a tapestry of fingerpicked guitars and rippling keys that builds steady throughout, moving from style to style. The one constant is the palette of production they use to create this solo featuring, arena rock, metal and floaty psychedlia. The album is a very welcoming work and may win over a few skeptics who are looking for simply good tunes.
Also out today..
Old Crow Medicine Show | Volunteer
Lord Huron | Vide Noir