Estrella del Sol really won me over with the first single from her forthcoming record, and next tune picks up, building otherworldly pop music that’s equally as mesmerizing as it is haunting. At times the vocals are barely audible, lurking in the shadows; it’s almost like listening to the score for some magnificent Kubrick movie, albeit one set in Latin American. You’ll hear this light pulse, the heartbeat just faintly warbling beneath the atmosphere; it creates the perfect cinematic feel that should hopefully turn some heads towards Figura de Cristal; it’s out via Felte on June 30th.
You can’t deny the popularity of Dry Cleaning; their new album Stumpworkis likely to make a bunch of year-end lists, if that matters to you. Personally, I’m digging how the band continue to mold their sound to their own sensibility and Florence Shaw’s voice, always seemingly taking a risk or two. In this one, you get Shaw narrating a conversation with a friend, all of it working over some jazzy improvisation; the rhythm section does hold onto some catchy licks, while everything else just seems to sort of expand out into the ether. It’s good to hear a band continue to push themselves a bit beyond the sterile confines of a genre; Stumpwork is out October 21st via 4AD.
Have you heard me shouting from the Arp hype train? I’m the guy at the back begging you to immerse yourself in the chilled textures the project is spinning as of late. I love the varying textural layers and how they’re stretched across various periods, seemingly, with some even focusing on a more futuristic outlook. Alexis even said the intention in the craft was to throw in something that was a “bit post-punk, a bit nightclub, a bit dubby,” which definitely encompasses a lot of territory, with wiggling room to boot. For me, the song takes a different turn around the 3 minute mark, adding in some darker structure, but ultimately illustrating how the project is stretching the boundaries of its own craft. New Pleasures drops July 15th via Mexican Summer.
After hearing everyone clamoring for Kate Bush lately, Samira Winter was like “Yo, hold my beer.” On this new Winter single, you get this cavernous brooding ground, something that feels like trudging through mud; it contrasts perfectly with the bright shimmering that is layered atop. It begins to swirl and mix, with more pronounced synth notes seeping through your speakers, all the while Samira’s voice just hangs in the air. It’s like this palpable mist, soothing all that ails you as the music spins through your earholes. This sort of dreaminess will definitely be on display when Winter takes hits the road with Peel Dream Magazine, plus we’re hoping we get a follow-up to Endless Space, sooner rather than later!
If you’re looking for the natural progression of what the Cure were doing in the late 80s, then you’re going to want to listen to this new Launder single. The guitars are heavy, but they’re toying with these angular notes that hint at melodic jangles, creating this brooding pop. Of course, Launder have updated the style a bit, adding more prominent drum work and melting the vocals into something a little softer to caress those dark moments lurking in the corner of the song. The band will release its debut, Happening, on July 15th via Ghostly.
We’ve been covering Wilder Maker for several years now, and I’m really excited with their new album, Male Models, being announced, courtesy of our friends over at Western Vinyl. Gabe Birnbaum’s songwriting and lyricism is something we should all cherish, but what they’re doing in this track really sees the band hitting their musical stride as a whole…with an added bonus performance by Katie Von Schleicher. In a way, it reminds me a lot of the Glands or something in Jason Lytle’s solo catalog; it’s rooted in this almost Southern spirit, tinged with boogie, but not afraid to try and push those boundaries into weird pop realms. Male Models drops on July 29th.
Launder is sure to be a name shared by everyone this year, as they’re already one of those “wary of the hype” acts due to tons of early coverage, including my own. Songwriter John Cudlip has even enlisted the help of Jackson Phillips (Day Wave) and Cole Smith (DIIV) to help build up his soundscapes…and this time he adds French artist Soko on the vocals to flesh things out. Hype or not, the sound of this tune alone illustrates why Launder is such a commodity, taking the elements of dream pop and shoegaze and putting some polish atop to create these perfect pop nuggets. Happening may be a debut LP, but it’s sounding more and more like a seasoned artist hitting their stride; it drops on July 15th via Ghostly.
This weekend you’ll be able to pick up the debut long player from Night Palace, but why not coast into your listen with one final visual experience to seduce you into the group’s sound. Interestingly, the visual accompaniment has this more bubbling psychedelia, while the track definitely walks the line of a more playful brand of indiepop. But, the sound is definitely filled to the brim with textures, which makes it all the more enchanting, elevating the song beyond the stellar vocal performance from Avery Draut. Pretty sure you could spend your entire day spinning about beneath that heavenly voice, but don’t take my word for it…sample a few more tunes then grab Diving Rings come this Friday!
If you’re not hip to what’s going on at Speedy Wunderground, can you count yourself among the hip? They just announced a new single from their series with Jane Weaver, the sound-shifting songwriter, toying with pop fans by mixing all the elements that make her utterly fascinating. It all begins with a very pop croon, steadied and seductive. Moving forward, the pulse of this tune takes on a mixture of sounds, kind of like an amalgam I’ve dubbed post-proto-punk. But, as the guitars add texture, the song moves into a purely electronic affair of sorts, reveling in its own majesty and dizzying listeners. Plus, it comes with this really great visualizer that’ll only add to that effect. Grab the 7″ HERE, but be warned, they always sell out rather quick!
We covered the first few Sooner tracks, and as another one has hit the airwaves, it seems fitting we slide it into today…not to mention it’s a great jam. When I listen to the band, they seem like they’ve combined a bunch of influences to create their own sound; you can file them behind the Beths in one spot, or turn the page and find the more ethereal side of Beach House blooming. This particular single is all about that climactic build, toying with your feelings in the verses, coming in soft and quiet, only to churn out heavy bliss in the chorus. Definitely a band that should be on more people’s radar; their album Days and Nights will drop on March 25 via Good Eye Records.