@@@ Swoll: You’ve Gone Away (Blight, 2018) I never thought ’80s sounds would return and last this long and it’s painful to hear. I think the lyrics are sad but the arrangement and the sounds are so cheerful and uplifting I’d like to hang myself. There are multiple tracks of vocals so I can’t exactly get to what he’s on about. I’m hearing Simple Minds and Tears for Fears and I can’t get with it. I get that musicians go wherever their hearts lead them but I don’t have to follow. Check it out.
@@@ Ssion: At Least the Sky is Blue (Cody Critcheloe, 2018) I got to this indie electronic pop single via a NYC event email. It’s opening slowly with a lot of ambient sounds before the singer comes in. After a bit of verse it straightens out into a straight pop song with lush vocals and a lot of other lushness going on. Mad ’80s flavors here if that’s how you roll. Oh the lushness of it is quite staggering — it’s a tune about being young and cruising around. There are a lot of micro sections in the tune which give it a lack of focus, but oy the lushness….you get the idea. Like the first tune I continue to be dumbfounded at the unjust recycling of cornball ’80s sounds.
@@@ Screaming Females: All at Once (Don Giovanni, 2018) A guitar rock record off last week’s All Music notable release email. Female singer, basher at the drumkit and more melodic breaks, at least in this first tune. The singer and her vibe is that of an exhausted middle aged person, not the punk energy of the young. The second tune pumps up the energy a bit and I like the guitar sounds here. She’s a very dramatic singer and somewhat different from what you would usually find in a band like this. No rrrrrriootttt grrrrrl so if you dig her then you’re probably going to feel this record. I’m agnostic. I appreciate the melodies she’s pumping out but I like a good rrrrrrrioooottttt grrrrrl.
@@@ Bazzi: Gone (N/A, 2018) Some mainstream pop of the Apple Music hot tracks section. Space age r&b with big ambient sounds over fat bass and skitter. The singer is all right but the tune kinda unfolded while I read my email and I don’t remember much being noteworthy about it. A lot of the mainstream pop music is about a sound or a flavor and this is no exception. Or it can be a hook that is just worn out like an old streetwalker. I like the combination myself and this is too short on hooks.
YTD recordings listened to: 112
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 60
Not good music: 51
Honorable Mentions: 3
Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Leviathan, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Janelle Monae, Luther Dickinson, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Gentleman Surfer, Satoko Fuji, Moken, Juan Atkins, Lantern, Twin Peaks, Djelimady Tounkara, The Oh Sees, Denny Zeitlin, MILF, Unfun, De La Soul, Carl Sagan’s Skate Shoes, Magrudergrind, A Tribe Called Quest, Noname, Gouge Away, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, Forro in the Dark, RAM, Fiver, Dona Onete, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Irreversible Entanglements, Converge, Open Mike Eagle, Criolo, Billy Strings, Guy One