Boxhead Ensemble – Quartets

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

Sounds like?

effect-laden modern classical

Moods

Cerebral

Thoughts

I can't tell if it's because I listened to this with ear buds or if it's recorded in a certain way but it felt very much 'in my head'. These tracks have space and build tension at times as well as create feelings of intimacy. Reminds me of an indie version of the Kronos quartet.

On second listen I was especially bored, just OK.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Boxhead-Ensemble-Quartets/release/198661

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Boxhead Ensemble – Quartets

Description: Album Review of Boxhead Ensemble – Quartets


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

iZem – Hafa

★★★☆☆ = Good!

Sounds like?

Danceable global chilled out pop

Moods

A refreshing sun shower

Thoughts

Evidently this is the project of an electro producer though it doesn't feel like an electro record. The lead-off track is a jazzy pop thing I enjoy, not sure what language she's singing but it fits with the basic sax to set the exotic tone. 'Quiver' works with a detached feeling like Drake's music or certain portishead. The spacey 'kulala' is another standout, a swelling keys line and ping pong balls swirl around a peaceful vocal line.

This sits right on the border of the worldly music craze that's taken over pop production but iZem is on the interesting side, exploring the sound with organic instrumentation. It's as if this is an afro focused record that's been influenced by Drake, not vice versa. Vocalists aren't very distinct but I enjoy them, at least the language is varied. He's at his best with vocalists, not always an easy thing to do as a producer.

Meditative, transporting, fresh and enjoyable; recommended.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/iZem-Hafa-/release/9230946

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZrmeKnof44

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5v41wqHZYc

Spotify


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iZem – Hafa

Description: Album Review of iZem – Hafa


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

Corrina Repp – The Pattern Of Electricity

★★★☆☆ = Good!

Sounds like?

folk inspired americana ( arcade fire) pop

Moods

Reflective moments that conjure early arcade fire

Thoughts

She gives nod to modern pop influences in her own way with well done organic instrumentation and dramatic touches that remind me of a slimmed down early arcade fire.

On revisits I was more appreciative of the electronic flourishes in the productions that I didn't hear initially.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Corrina-Repp-The-Pattern-Of-Electricity/release/7121692

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4HWFqp7KsZM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tz5C4wNVKtc

Spotify


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Corrina Repp – The Pattern Of Electricity

Description: Album Review of Corrina Repp – The Pattern Of Electricity


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

Old 97’s – Fight Songs

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

Sounds like?

Pop Alt folk country, like wilcos most straightforward pop from their earlier albums

Moods

Sounds like it'd play well in a barn

Thoughts

Not a bad record by any means just not really my style. Lacks the memorable weirdness of my favorite alt pop country act, Wilco.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Old-97s-Fight-Songs/release/3705572

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Old 97’s – Fight Songs

Description: Album Review of Old 97’s – Fight Songs


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

Paavoharju – Laulu Laakson Kukista

★★★☆☆ = Good!

Sounds like?

Equal parts experimental pop as it is swirling found sound

Moods

Uncle boonmee who can recall his past lives

Thoughts

haunting and strange indie alt pop sung in a language I don't understand, southeast Asia maybe? Good Western pop sensibilities with a spooky distant lofi vibe going on. Works and the foreign tongue makes this feel like a trip.. Vaguely experimental at times though these are clearly pop lovers..

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Paavoharju-Laulu-Laakson-Kukista/release/1337741

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oVyZxvUlPc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zG2dV_RjPc

Spotify


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Paavoharju – Laulu Laakson Kukista

Description: Album Review of Paavoharju – Laulu Laakson Kukista


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

Bullion – Blue Pedro

★★★☆☆ = Good!

Sounds like?

modern electro folk with a synth 80s nod and eurobeat

Moods

Coastal electro folk

Thoughts

Tight ep, tracks loop quick guitar or synth lines and layer electro production bits on top. Nothing revolutionary but it grabs with it's immediacy and just enough variation.

I like the guitar soloing on spin2glory.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Bullion-Blue-Pedro/release/10522688

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zub0p82u7Fg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RILKXsGRO8k

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nn2uyuQlKdM

Spotify


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Bullion – Blue Pedro

Description: Album Review of Bullion – Blue Pedro


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

North Americans – Going Steady

★★★☆☆ = Good!

Sounds like?

instrumental acoustic guitar album with a pleasant vibe

Moods

Comfortable autumn sweater

Thoughts

basic and chilled out, not a thing I'd turn on very active listening but as atmosphere its enjoyable (think folksy Sunday morning).

While an instrumental acoustic album it maintains energy and there's a bit of variety with what sounds like pedal steel at times.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/North-Americans-Going-Steady/release/12572865

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2QEzuob9yw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aF1prRX96J8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXiPzTwRUsI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5RvKCWEX4Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npJ6UoMreew

Spotify


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North Americans – Going Steady

Description: Album Review of North Americans – Going Steady


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

Hunee – Hunchin’ All Night

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

Sounds like?
New age / world into clubier house tracks

Moods
Obscure for the sake of being obscure

Thoughts
The 80s world pop on the first few songs is OK but things take a decidedly more interesting turn with ‘ritual of love’ where the house vibe is gradually turned up behind a vocal rambling. This transitions into Larry Heard’s burning 4 love, a fantastic house track. Things finish off OK, better than side 1 at least, but overall not anything I feel the need to revisit.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Hunee-Hunchin-All-Night/release/11839108

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Hunee – Hunchin’ All Night

Description: Album Review of Hunee – Hunchin’ All Night


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

Leo Kottke,Mike Gordon – Sixty Six Steps

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

What’s it sound like?
Technically proficient guitar (x2?), drum acoustic trio.

Thoughts
Hokey, clean blue grass.

Instrumentation is great, lyrics are crap; couldn’t get into it.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Leo-Kottke-Mike-Gordon-Sixty-Six-Steps/release/4452734

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Leo Kottke,Mike Gordon – Sixty Six Steps

Description: Album Review of Leo Kottke,Mike Gordon – Sixty Six Steps


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

Karen Dalton – In My Own Time

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

What’s it sound like?
60s folk rock

Thoughts
Interesting listen, a set of covers by a distinct voice who straddles the line between folk, rock, and country. She brings a distinctive touch to each, making them sound fully like her own songs. I like the tracks backee by a band ( in my own dream, one night of love) but she does well in more stripped down solo moments too.

Great songwriting mixed with a great singer makes for a great record, recommended.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Karen-Dalton-In-My-Own-Time/release/2786153

Listen!

Youtube

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Karen Dalton – In My Own Time

Description: Album Review of Karen Dalton – In My Own Time


Rating: 4 out of 5