For this week’s installment of LRDC becomes even more eclectic, I’ve thrown in some curve balls for your listening enjoyment. The first standout track is one from the most buzzed about black metal band in the past 20 years, Deafheaven. I would call this band the 2010’s Converge as they have proven to be very innovative within the umbrella of “heavy metal.” The track I’ve included, “Brought to the Water,” falls under that category as heavy music with a bit of something extra. As the band has stated several influences in the shoegaze genre, they have been put under the genre of Blackgaze by Wikipedia, and I can definitely agree with that definition. To be honest, it’s taken me a couple listens of their freshly released album “New Bermuda” to get into it, and that is saying a ton as I was a proponent to the metal scene in my earlier years, so give it the time it deserves and I’m sure you will grow to love it.
Another interesting track included this week is one by Massachusetts post-rockers Caspian. Their track “Arcs of Command” is a long one (like the previously mentioned song), clocking in at just under 9 minutes. Want to know why the song is so long? They take two and a half whole minutes to get up to 60% volume. But believe me, the wait is oh so worth it. This song swells into something that is just so aurally pleasing on so many levels. With the melodic lead guitar and the slow, driving drums in the first half, it almost lulls you to sleep. Not for long of course, because it turns into a turbulent ride through waves of different sounds and well-calculated instrumentals. This one may take some time to fully grasp its depth.
A not so strange sound to our weekly lists is the very “Neon Indian-esque” Mirror Kisses/George Clanton with “Never Late Again”. On his just-released album “100% Electronica” he pumps his vaporwave stylo and pushes it beyond that straight into space. Knocking you further into the great unknown is another new track from Chromatics called “Shadow.” We’ve all been patiently waiting for their new full-length, which was due out in February, but I guess that’s just the nature of the art. What Chromatics does so well is creating so much out of so little, with whisper-like vocals and simple beats/synth, it’s music you find you are just always in the mood for. Also, this song just reminds me of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” and who doesn’t love The Beatles?
While you’re in that mood of exploring space and the wonderment of the unknown, let’s go back in time to the 80s. This resurgence of 80s themes in electro-indie tracks is warmly welcomed by me and I’ve featured two such bands who have knocked it out of the park in capturing this nostalgia and bringing it into the 22nd century! Maserati’s has a unique way of blending rock with space-like sounds into songs that belong on the final round of a video game, and “Rehumanizer II” is our first peep from them since their 2012 release. While Maserati has the full band space-rock sound, Pittsburgh duo Zombi does it with just synthesizers, bass, and drums. Their new song “Mission Creep” also would be at home in a video game, perhaps a boss level on Megaman. You can hear influences of the 60s, 70s, and 80s in these guys sound, but there is something new and refreshing to this track that makes me excited to see what they have next for us. Good thing we only have to wait until 10/16 for their next release, “Shape Shift,” to come out.
Here are this week’s honorable mentions:
Shigeto – “Do My Thing” – I really have been digging this less-is-more thing and Shigeto has the ambient techno boxes ticked. I’ve learned recently that this solo act (Zachary Shigeto Saginaw) was also a touring drummer for School of Seven Bells (RIP) who are a very prized favorite of mine.
Escondido – “Heart is Black” – I’m sure this duo was featured in their high school yearbooks as the two people who would most likely be a part of a Fleetwood Mac cover band. Not only do they have the look, but they have the sound. Their country-rock sound spans a ton of other genres and even decades of music, and this is certainly a standout track within the indie scene.
BØRNS – “Fool” – Your dancehall track of the year is here, it’s right here! I love the funky vibes this band has been putting out as of late. The funny thing is so is every music outlet and radio station, so jump on these guys before they’re too cool to be “cool.”
Band of Horses ft. Excision – “The Funeral” – Why? Because why not. I love Band of Horses and if “new music” comes in the form of a subtly “dubbed-up” version of a song I know and love? I ain’t mad.