It’s been a while since I’ve actually written anything on music on here. My last post featured albums from 2013 that I found needed a bit more love. But since the new year began, plenty of music has been released already. I bought a few albums in the past few weeks and so far I’ve been loving all of them. Here they are, including two ‘oldies’ that I think need sharing as well.
Warpaint – Warpaint
I was very curious about this album. I already knew Warpaint as I played their first album, called The Fool, non stop and I even went to see them live. Their self-titled second album is even better. Out of all CDs I’m discussing in this post this is my favorite. It’s like the band took everything from the first album that I loved and put it in here and then some. So what do I love it so much? First up are the interesting rhythm patterns combined with a slow, almost lazy vibe. It’s a fairly dark yet laidback sounding record. Great for relaxing and just think of nothing while being taken on a trip by this music. Secondly is the introduction of a more electronic vibe. There is an added layer of sound to this album which not only deepens the songs but also makes that every time you listen to it you’ll hear more. Definitely an album that keeps you interested.
Broken Bells – After the Disco
Another second album by a band whose first album I loved. Broken Bells is the collaboration of James Mercer of The Shins and Dangermouse. I saw them live when they toured their first album a few years ago and I was surprised there even was a second album. The album couldn’t be more aptly named as the songs all give off a disco vibe which makes for upbeat songs that sometimes remind me of the Bee Gees’ Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, but in a good way. The title track and first single makes me want to move while other songs slow it down or are direct earworms. What strikes me is that most songs take elements from disco music, but never do any of the songs go all the way. It makes for a refreshing sound that fuses together with that typical Broken Bells vibe to create an enjoyable album that would suit the hopefully warmer temperatures of spring & summer.
Bombay Bicycle Club – So Long, See You Tomorrow
The band I once loved and got back on my radar the moment I first heard lead single Carry Me. I loved early Bombay Bicycle Club songs, the lost track after their more folky/ acoustic experiment on their second album. This fourth album totally delivers on the promise of that first single: So Long, See You Tomorrow features many solid indie rock songs that have catchy refrains, guitar riffs and drumlines. It’s one of those instantly likable records that work on larger audiences and I can already imagine what some of these tracks will do when played live at some of the summer festivals the band will most likely be playing. For those who need an album that is easy to listen to, but does bring something new to the table.
James Vincent McMorrow – Post Tropical
On to follow up album number 3! If there is one album that I loved most in 2012 it was his debut album Early in the Morning. I think that together with Marcus Foster’s Nameless Path this album comprised my soundtrack of 2012. I already heard a few of his new songs at the Songbird Festival in Rotterdam last November and I then knew that this second album would be a lot more experimental than the first one. Leaning heavily on his high and icy falsetto, McMorrow has created a hauntingly beautiful record that combines elements of the acoustic base he laid on his debut with electronic music that reminds me of some of the indie chill wave I listen to on an almost daily basis. This album definitely needed to grow on me and I needed a few listens until I could really appreciate it.
Jacco Gardner – Cabinet of Curiosities
On to one of the most talked about albums produced in the Netherlands in years. Or so it seemed to me anyway. This is by no means a new release, but I hadn’t heard it yet and I picked it up when I bought one of the other articles and I do really like it, so I thought I’d include it here as well. I can best describe this music as a fusion of 60 psychelia with 70s folk. The songs are dark at times with a slightly unsettling vibe (cackling children anyone?). But that does make for some interesting combinations and I love the retro vibe of the songs. If you like bands such as Tame Impala, The Coral and Blitzen Trapper, you may very well like Jacco Gardner.
Britney Spears – Britney Jean
Oh and yeah, Britney released an album in December as well. I can’t help it, I just love her albums. Even though half the songs are too easy and clearly fillers and mediocre at best, the handful of songs that do stand out are keepers. I feel that is the case with all of her albums, but I have never minded. I love me some Brit and I’m not ashamed to admit it. Fingers to the sky!
You may have noticed that I haven’t listed any favorite songs for any of these albums. No need to worry, in my first Music of the Moment (which will be the next music post you’ll be getting from me) I’ll make sure to include one song per album.
What have you been listening to lately?