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The slow rollout of bio data may have helped to differentiate project as something distinct and independent from TTA’s Balearic-tinged chilled pop meditations, but with ceo Eric doesn’t raise blood pressures much beyond where he’s proven himself an adept, and the music’s better for it, mining a smart pop vein throughout his debut LP LP, out via Modular [Buy] ceo – “Come With Me” // Our introduction to Cloud Nothings came via the snotty lo-fi pop of “Hey Cool Kid” and “Can’t Stay Awake,” a fuzzy bedroom anthem reminiscent of old-school Olympia lo-fi post-hardcore band Lync.
After that, Cleveland’s Dylan Baldi continued delivering great songs that teased-out both (and other) directions.
In their initial Alberta form we mentioned “an early Pacific Northwest sound, like what you might expect from the Softies, only on a more shoe-gaze tip…” This time it’s Velocity Girl surfacing amid the piano, guitars, keyboards, extended pulsations, and ambient breaks and builds.
They’re still not afraid to let things flow — a couple of the album’s seven tracks are above eight minutes — but as a testament to their pop craft, it never feels overdone.
FROM: Los Angeles, CA LINKS: activechildmusic.com, @activechild ORDER: EP, out via Filter [Buy] Active Child – “Wilderness” // 19-year-old Central New York ”Witch house” purveyor Alec Koone says his pretty, haunting, impressively 3-D soundscapes are influenced by “feelings, vibes, souls, spirits, nature, essences.” His EP, out now via Tri Angle [Buy] Balam Acab – “Regret Making Mistakes” // Baths is the project of 21-year-old Los Angeles local Wes Weisenfeld, conceived after letting go of his previous moniker Post-Foetus. is a chopped, scuffed, and glitched beat pastiche, intercut with emotional, occasionally helium-huffed off-kilter pop-falsetto vocals (think Passion Pit’s Michael Angelakos if he was weaned on the Warp catalog and DNTEL). FROM: Los Angeles, CA LINKS: myspace.com/bathsmusic ORDER: , Bethany Cosentino and longhair cohort Bobb Bruno create hazy summertime pop gems filled with yearning, hooks, and feedback.
Baths puts structure and ear-warming melodies amidst this forward-thinking beat music — these are real songs first, production experiments second, so it’s easier to dig in if Flying Lotus’s bleak Los Angeles isn’t the overlay of L. The apparent simplicity of the songs points to a more complicated craft.
FROM: Worcester, MA LINKS: myspace.com/imfur, @DOMband ORDER: EP, out via Burning Mill Records DOM – “Living In America” // San Francisco BTW Dominant Legs, aka Ryan Lynch and now permanent vocalist/keyboardist Hannah Hunt, make music with a jittery, autumnal sound that’s part Belle & Sebastian pop/part Arthur Russell lullaby/part their own own details. ) Incidentally, he cites Nile Rodgers, Tracy Chapman, and the Style Council as influencers; she: Sade and Mazzy Star. via Siouxsie and Joy Division, but it’s a distinctive and updated collection that blends icy, melancholic guitar/synthesizers, dark drum machines, post-punk, and a couple of languages.
Lynch recorded a bunch of songs at home by himself and then revamped a few with Hunt for his new debut can sound like the Cure in the guitar tones (or XTC’s “Mayor Of Simpleton” in the introduction to “Crisis”) or early R. It’s worth noting that after growing up in NJ and Nice, they met at school in London, where they listened to black and death metal before moving into the so-called “Black Wave” (i.e.
Cloud Nothings – “Didn’t You” // The San Diego-to-Brooklyn duo of Brian Oblivion and Madeline Follin create lo-fi bubblegum pop with a dark underside: Sort of like a conjugal Carpenters raised on punk and surf rock, bearing their Motown-worshiping teeth and the casual Jim Jones sample.
FROM: Brooklyn, NY (via Oberlin College) LINKS: myspace.com/blondesblondesblondes ORDER: EP out via Merok [Buy] Blondes – “Spanish Fly” // Braids are the older, wiser version of the Neighborhood Council, a band that first caught our attention on the back of single self-titled EP.