Purity Ring, the Canadian electronic duo of Corin Roddick and Megan James, sounds like water so freezing cold it shocks your skin—it’s surprising, uncomfortable, and disorienting. Icy-blue notes appear throughout their debut full-length album, Shrines, as James’ aloof-but-assertive vocals go in and out of focus, trading places moment to moment with spastic synthesizers. Roddick handles that instrument, turning delicate melodies ... Read More
Dream-psych duo Peaking Lights’ third full-length album, Lucifer, is their most accessible yet. Out June 19th on Mexican Summer in the US and on Weird World June 18th in the U.K, it follows last year’s release of the incredible summer lovin’ 936. This latest album contains a similar meditative atmosphere, with grooving rhythms and rich textures, but it's gentler than their 2011 record. Lucifer is comparatively more like a ... Read More
Some artists get better with age, and Patti Smith is definitely one of them. With the recent success of her book, Just Kids, about her relationship with late photographer Robert Maplethorpe, Smith’s receiving the most attention she’s had since the late 1970s. I’d bet that many of those who’ve read Just Kids aren’t even very familiar with Smith’s music. This makes the timing of her newest musical album, Banga, rather perfect.
The ... Read More
Brooklyn based quintet Friends are set to release their debut album, Manifest!, on Fat Possum Records June 5th, just in time for the summer. Brimming with tropical pop rhythms and percussive tribal beats, this album is perfect for hot rooftop parties and beach side dances the gals of Blue Hawaii would be jealous of. The album opens with the explosive and catchy “Friend Crush,” full of rippling synth lines and reverb-laden vocals reminiscent of Karen O ... Read More
It’s hard to believe it’s been almost four years since New Zealand’s Ladyhawke, otherwise known as Pip Brown, burst onto the scene with her immensely danceable debut record, but her second album Anxiety will make you forget she ever left. “Girl Like Me” starts things off with a Metric-inspired bang, with Brown’s smoky vocals cascading over layers of snappy drums and punchy bass lines. First single “Black White & ... Read More
Despite her recent forays into poppier territory, Norah Jones still calls to mind the image of a young chanteuse churning out wise-beyond-her-years jazz tunes in a downtown club. On her fifth album Little Broken Hearts, she’s still downtown, but she’s traded the jazz club for a hip, hole-in-the-wall pub. After working with him on 2011’s Rome, Jones reteamed with Danger Mouse as her producer, and his indie, hip-hop influence is all over this ... Read More
Does your dead-of-winter cabin fever have you feeling the weight of the world’s mercilessness more acutely than usual? Before you make a big tears and whiskey scene at your local dive bar/cuss out the gray sky and precipitate an avalanche, consider listening up for a fresh set of wise words from done-seasoned country songstress Gretchen Peters. Her new album Hello Cruel World came out early this week.
Peters--whose style echos the warm ... Read More
BY Jen Hazen
in Music Stuff
on May 16, 2011
Just in time for summer, Holly Golightly and The Brokeoffs deliver another round of dark Americana music perfect for your next moonshine tasting or impromptu back porch shindig—No Help Coming (Transdreamer). It has been four years, and four albums, since the duo consisting of Ms. Golightly and Lawyer Dave released their gritty 2007 debut, You Can’t Buy A Gun When You’re Crying, and the two don’t show any signs of slowing down.
Originally ... Read More