This is the list you’ve all been waiting for, well, sort of. This is my Top 20 LPs of the year. Admittedly, there’s none of the high profile hitmakers on here, but that’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy those albums. I loved Purple Mountains just as much as the next person, same with Weyes Blood, but in a pickle, would I choose it over that Martha LP? Uh, absolutely not. Plus, I ran a lot this year because I got tired of being fat, so the majority of this stuff is pretty upbeat and “runnable.” There’s no order because all are equal under my ears.
It’s super-hard to really nail down your favorite albums, especially when its only July and the whole thing seems pretty arbitrary, to put it lightly. But, like all your favorite sites, hits matter; they make you feel cool. So, I have concocted my own list of the Best Albums of 2019…so far. This in no way is a representation of the whole of the site contributors, and merely exists as poor commentary by a blogger with too much time on his hands. Enjoy!
In case you weren’t anticipating the new Halfsour LP enough, I wanted to reaffirm that next weeks Sticky release will be well-worth your hard-earned dollars. I think the meat of this song is top of the line, Grade A rock n’ roll. It opens with this bobbing bass line and this knife-work guitar, letting Zoe tease you into the track. Once they hit that 1.10 minute mark, the song drops into some of the best guitar pop I’ve heard this week, with Zoe’s voice soaring through your stereo (or probs your laptop). it’s like a fucking tractor beam of rad pop music that you just won’t let you pull away. Sticky drops next Friday via Fire Talk and Disposable America.
Here’s the thing about Halfsour; the band can pretty much change and adopt to any style to fit their need. You want power-pop? They got it? Need a noisy rocker? They got it. This new single off Sticky is a slow-burning ballad…like I said, they got it all. It’s built up slowly, rolling drums and Zoe’s voice primarily pushing the song forward. You can hear the guitar lines pop up here and there in the first 2 minutes; it’s then that things start to get a little bit broader. The guitar goes for a solo, and the song spreads its wings, with Zoe’s voice again riding on the back of this beautiful bird. Like I said, this trio can do it all. Just wait and see when the LP drops on May 24th via Fire Talk/Disposable America.
I’ll be honest, Halfsour didn’t cross my radar until Jigsaw Records sent me Tuesday Night Live back in 2016, but I’ve been a huge huge fan since then, so it’s great that they’ve announced a new LP! I think the mix on this song is absolutely perfect; you get these huge heavy riffs and crashing cymbals, but they’re not imposing. It’s more like they’re clearing space, giving ample room for Zoe Wyner’s voice real-life commentary to strike listeners down. I love the chorus from all parts, from the scuzzy guitars to the pitch changes in Wyner’s voice, it all absolutely works to the max. Sticky will be out on May 24th via two of my favorite labels, Fire Talk and Disposable America. Please, if you’re not listening to this band, you’re not living right.
Temporary Eyesore is the brand new project of Zoe, who also plays in power rockers Halfsour. This time, she’s turning to flexing her musical muscles, constructing songs in a different fashion than what she’s done in her other projects. She says these songs are informed by aging and looking back on relationships and things that form your identity when your’e younger. I love how close one feels to the music in this single; it’s as if she’s recording in a room right behind…always an added charm. Plus, she has teamed up with two incredible labels in Anxiety Pop and Lost Sound Tapes for the release of the cassette on June 1st. Look out on the webs (PTrash specifically) next week for the stream of the tape, or pre-order it HERE.
Halfsour caught our attention when they had a release with our friends over at Jigsaw Records, and they just unleashed another couple of tunes from their forthcoming Charm School. I like how these two tracks show the two sides of the story of this band, offering one with the male front and the other featuring a female front. In that story, you get a rambunctious semi-TV Personalities feel, while the latter brings out a more pop-punk centric jam. These new jams will be featured on the new release from Disposable America and Too Far Gone Records on October 14th…this should be on your list.
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Another day, another hit from Jigsaw Records 2016 collection. This time out, we’ve got a tune from Boston’s Halfsour, bringing about a more ramshackle bit of power-pop. The track has an inner hook, but it’s coated in the way the vocals are delivered with a devil-may-care attitude; it even sounds like the tune was recorded live, giving it a punch that you don’t always get with perfected studio blends. They’ll be releasing their debut album on January 29th, and if you’re asking me, this song is one helluva way to kick things off.