This week has been a tough one between travel, work and life in general. Since time has not been on my side, the reviews for songs are from various blogs and not my usual Pulitzer Prize level discourse. However, Memorial Day weekend is now upon us and it is time to go let my inner lax bro out for the Final Four (yes, I played college lacrosse.) Enjoy the music, enjoy the holiday.
Yeasayer – “Henrietta”
Yeasayer’s vaguely chillwave new track “Henrietta” takes the best from the genre, abandoning its more anemic qualities. The band tipped us off to the new song on Twitter, if you can call this tipping us off. According to We All Want Someone, the band sent CDs of the song to fans signed up for their mailing list. Then the great equalizers at WAWS uploaded the track to Soundcloud for us all to share in. Download available in the stream, review via Huffington Post.
Fang Island – “Asunder”
Rhode Island’s finest math-pop trio Fang Island are back in the game this summer with their second record Major, and here’s hook-laden, chugging lead single “Asunder” for your headbanging pleasure. Good luck not getting whiplash, because “Asunder” is a track that just doesn’t let up – massive, motorik drums relentlessly pound as tightly interwoven pop-punk guitars fight for dominance, frontman Jason Bartell wails anthemic, catchy lyrics, the whole thing ends in a storm of clattering handclaps. All in all, “Asunder” puts Fang Island in the front lines of a slew of great bands (see: Titus Andronicus, Turbo Fruits, etc.) fighting to reclaim the genre “pop-punk” from its associations with mall rock and winning. Major drops July 24. Download available in the stream, review via Pretty Much Amazing.
The Knocks – “Learn to Fly”
If you’re still stuck at the office or in school on this fine Monday afternoon, you may want to wait until you get home to listen to this. It all depends on your self-restraint and ability to refrain from busting into dance when confronted with a high-energy, pop-charged piece of audio like this new track called “Learn To Fly” from NY-based production duo The Knocks. This song could fill the dance floor in a cemetery, so be mindful of your surroundings when you crack it open. Download available in the stream, review via Pigeons & Planes.
Killer Mike – “Reagan”
Ronald Reagan’s presence looms so large in gangsta rap, and casts such complicated shadows, that to invoke his name in a rap song is to summon an entire worldview and refer to a constellation of injustices in two syllables. Killer Mike uses Reagan’s name, smack in the center of his career-defining new album R.A.P. Music, as an artful metaphor for perpetuation of injustice. In “Reagan,” Ronald Reagan is less a person than a tendency, to be stamped out wherever it is found, even within rap itself: “We should be indicted/For bullshit we inciting/Hand the children death and pretend that its exciting/We are advertisements for agony and pain/We exploit the youth, we tell them to join a gang/We tell them dope stories, introduce them to the game/Just like Oliver North introduced us to cocaine/In the 80s when them bricks came on military planes.” Like all of his best work, it has the sweeping clarity of a dissertation, the galvanizing fire of a sermon, and the forcefulness of a hurled brick. This time, though, there is another quality present: the cleansing power of a confession. Download available in the stream, review via Pitchfork.
Onuinu – “Happy Home”
This track grabs you from the very start and doesn’t let go until the end and then it’ll probably happen all over again because how can you just listen to this once? “Happy Home” is soaked in synths, psychedelic rock guitar, infectiously funky bass and such a sweet, sweet melody. I really can’t wait to hear the entire album. Unfortunately, Mirror Gazer doesn’t come out until August 21st. Review via Indie Shuffle.
Thomas Barfod – “November Skies ft. Nina Kinert”
Tomas Barfod, the drummer for Danish indie-electro group WhoMadeWho, will release a new solo production album titled Salton Sea on May 22nd. Barfod’s newest song, “November Skies,” features the lovely Swedish singer Nina Kinert. Before the vocals drop in, the song sounds like a community of glitchy insects flying around in an atmospheric haze. It quickly transforms into a beautifully layered synth-pop jam. Download available in the stream, review via Popstache.
Kill Paris – “Shades of Funk”
In less than 30 days, producer Kill Paris has released a couple of favorite 2012 tracks including the previously blogged the mashup “Keep Your Secrets in Midnight City“. Today we bring you his latest concoction, “Shades of Funk”. The fantastic groovy dubstep track with a high level of funk and bounce will get you moving even if you do not want to. Download available in the stream, review via Music Ninja.