2016: Good Albums / Pt 7

The Kills - Ash and IceWelcome to the latest addition of 2016: Good Albums! We’ve reached the halfway point of 2016 and have already listened to some records that will surely appear on numerous end of year lists. As always, below are a couple extra recommendations of recently released albums that have particularly tickled my fancy, and I hope will tickle yours too. Some records are sexy, some are groovy, some are heavy, and one is rather terrifying. Enjoy! Let me know what you think via the comments below, or via the Facebook and Twitter pages.

Ash & Ice by The Kills / Rock duo The Kills return with a record that boasts a lot of attitude and gnarly guitar riffs that makes an altogether pretty badass sound. It’s full of catchy singles, hard hitting deep cuts and the occasional divulge in some psychedelica too. It’s a solid, fun record.

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Album Review / Swans – The Glowing Man

WHEN: 17.06.2016Swans - The Glowing Man
WHERE: Young Gods Records
LOVE.LIKE.ALRIGHT: LOVE

Trilogies are usually very difficult to perfect. In my lifetime I’ve witnessed some excellent examples of the perfect trilogy (Back to the Future, LOTR) as well as a huge amount of poorly attempted ones (The Matrix, Iron Man and The Hangover movies). I do struggle to recall many trilogies occurring in the world of music however – obviously this is a feat that could only be attempted by Swans. Arguably the greatest behemoth in music today, Swans have been around longer than I have but have forever churned out solid efforts of how to produce sounds that dances gleefully at the extremes of music. Michael Gira and co have come together for the final time with new record ‘The Glowing Man’ symbolising the end of the band’s current incarnation, and a very worthy end to a scintillating trilogy of records.

The previous two records – 2012’s ‘The Seer’ and 2014’s ‘To Be Kind’ – were responsible for pushing Swans into the spotlight as the band determined to push the envelope as far as possible. With the new record boasting a timespan of over two hours and eight songs full of heavily layered and mind-warping instrumentation ‘The Glowing Man’ is certainly a record worthy of succeeding those, and as a way to say farewell.

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Pile / A Giant Dog / Album Review

WHEN: 06.05.2016A Giant Dog - Pile
WHERE: Merge Records
LOVE.LIKE.ALRIGHT: LOVE

It goes without saying that Dogs are the greatest animals in the entire world. I have a dog called Susie and despite being deaf and seemingly unaware of everything in her surroundings she’s the sweetest little nugget I’ve ever known. A Giant Dog are another dog I’ve come to known and with their new album Pile, I think I love them too. Anything that starts off with opera singers is surely going to be great.

That’s right, A Giant Dog kick off their new album with Intro, a minute of pure opera at its most unexpected. This is quickly followed up with Creep, a track that abruptly enters the listener into a world of hard rock riffs and a ton of volume thrown behind it. It’s full of layers of sound that fortunately have some stellar production which means we’re able to hear all of the guitars and the drums and the bassline – which by the way adds in a solid groove amongst the distortion. Continue reading “Pile / A Giant Dog / Album Review”

2016: Good Albums / #6

Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide To Earth2016: GOOD ALBUMS is a series in which I justify spending hours and hours listening to new music by compiling a neat little list of recommendations complete with a couple sentences of hopefully coherent fangirl-ism. This is the SIXTH addition to the long standing series which has allowed me to spread the “hey guys, this is cool” love way more greatly than ever before. If you agree or disagree with any of the recommendations in today’s post then do let me know via the comments below, or if you wanna step on my toes and throw a recommendation to the people then please do go ahead, and then we can become best friends. Spread the love for this post by sharing it via the buttons below, or via the Exploding Head Syndrome Facebook and Twitter pages too.

Sturgill Simpson / A Sailor’s Guide To Earth / Quite possibly the most universally adored country record released this year, Sturgill Simpson’s newest record is a beautifully crafted listening experience that will easily sit within many End of Year Lists. It’s a record that holds a sweet country core but is surrounded by numerous elements of alternative, folk, and pop to bolster the variety levels up high. It’s a superb record, and the cover of Nirvana’s ‘In Bloom’ is excellent too.

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A Moon Shaped Pool by Radiohead \ Album Review

WHEN: 08.05.2016Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
WHERE: XL Recordings
LOVE.LIKE.ALRIGHT: LOVE

Bloody hell it’s arrived. After performing a disappearing act that proved to be almost perfect and suddenly dropping two singles – causing me to publish an article complete with a Buzzfeed-esque title – Radiohead have returned to the music scene with the release of new album A Moon Shaped Pool. With The King Of Limbs proving to be a rather stuttered follow up to the fantastic In Rainbows I was a little bit sceptical about this new record, but fortunately it is one that stands up tall beside the 2007 release.

The first two singles – Burn The Witch and Daydreaming – kicks things off by laying down the foundations and setting up the overall sound of the record. The former offers a heavily layered sound complete with strings, synth and bass which come together to produce a rhythm that’s overwhelming with urgency. Thom Yorke also provides the drawling vocal we’ve all come to love and it’s a great way to get a record started. Daydreaming is a much more sombre, longer affair with some beautiful piano chords performed alongside some watery synthesisers which seem to flood the airwaves just enough to realise that there are no drums present. It’s a beautiful tune. Continue reading “A Moon Shaped Pool by Radiohead \ Album Review”

2016: Good Albums \ Pt 5

GOOD ALBUMS is a series in which I essentially take on the role of an archaeologist who has embarked on a constant excavation into the vast array of the music industry and sporadically reveal all of the results I deem to be, at the very least, pretty good. It’s a series that allows me to give props to those who have created music that hits me in all the right places pretty sharpish without having to take the time to rustle up a full blown review, which is good because I am a very busy boy these days. Please enjoy what is PART FIVE of the Good Albums of 2016 series, and do all that liking and sharing and all that fun stuff if you want.FOTL - The Peace And Truce...

The Peace & Truce Of Future Of The Left by Future Of The Left | Music is a great way to reveal your feelings without actually turning into a crybaby bitch. Sometimes you can play some happy sunshine pop to fit your happy little sunshine mood and other times you can play some aggressive hip hop for when you’re feeling like a straight up G. Future Of The Left creates music that allows you to display all your best “I hate you and everything in the world ever” moods and their new album is just another excellent dose of that.

Much like the excellent How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident, FOTL’s new record recreates a lot of the off-kilter, pummelling punk sound that made that record so thick with layers upon layers of disjointed and gritty instrumentals. The vocals are bizarre, strained, pained and accompanied with some cult like backing vocals that make you feel slightly unnerved. These are performed on top of an array of heavily distorted guitar riffs that sound murky beyond belief, altogether creating an energy and a listening experience that’s simply superb. Excellent record.

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Good Albums of 2016 \ Pt 4

GOOD ALBUMS is a sTuff Slang - Tuff Slangeries in which I essentially take on the role of an archaeologist who has embarked on a constant excavation into the vast array of the music industry and sporadically reveal all of the results I deem to be, at the very least, pretty good. It’s a series that allows me to give props to those who have created music that hits me in all the right places pretty sharpish without having to take the time to rustle up a full blown review, which is good because I am a very busy boy these days. Please enjoy what is PART FOUR of the Good Albums of 2016 series, and do all that liking and sharing and all that fun stuff if you want.

TUFF SLANG by TUFF SLANG | There’s never an oversaturation of music that makes you feel good, and this is another record to add to that pile of sunshine. Tuff Slang are three members of three bands (Secret Colours, Dirty Rotten Sunshine, A Lull) who have pulled together a debut record that’s reeks of upbeat rock songs. Lead single NOTHING ALL THE TIME is a great example of using hooks to throw all sorts of hooks and accessibility into guitar riffs to create a couple reasons to get into this band. It’s a great debut from a promising new band. Nice work guys.

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