Future ThisThe Big Pink
released Jan 16
English electro-rock duo The Big Pink recently released their sophomore effort Future This, following up the indie success of their 2009 debut A Brief History of Love. While I question the selection of the title track (Future This isn't the most engaging song on this album and sounds like it could easily be a b-side from their last disc) the album as a whole is innovative and intriguing. Filled with lofty lyrics, meddlesome guitar noise and subdued synths, Milo Cordell and Robbie Furze deliver an LP that shows the duo has outgrown the drone kings label and risen to queen bee status in the hive of experimental rock.
Hit The Ground (Superman)
Paralytic Stalksof Montreal
the second biggest band from Athens, Georgia, of Montreal are known for their neo-psychedelic, theatrical music. of Montreal have always been a schizophrenic band and the music on Paralytic Stalks explores reconfigured elements of classical music while the lyrics are flush with self loathing and religious overtones.
"On some level, it's thinking about spiritual crisis, crying out for guidance and not hearing a voice in return, or hearing a nefarious voice," of Montreal founder Kevin Barnes told Spin last month about the marvelously uneven track We Will Commit Wolf Murder (listen below.)
We Will Commit Wolf Murder
Go Fly A KiteBen Kweller
It's been nearly a decade since Kweller's biggest hit, Wasted and Ready, and since then Kweller has branched out to country music, married, had a child and created a popular web music series One Minute Pop Song. An accomplished guitarist from an early age, Kweller has said Go Fly A Kite's release date was delayed not only because of label issues but also because he wanted the album to be "just right." He's also stated the new album is eclectic, energetic and touches on darker topics than he has explored in the past. You can listen to Go Fly A Kite in its entirety courtesy of Rolling Stone here.
Mean To Me
Reign of TerrorSleigh Bells
Sleigh Bells' Reign of Terror is like a piece of tarnished silver. It's shiny and stunning but it doesn't need any polish- they are a noise band after all. The band's press release promoting Reign of Terror states the album is "the sonic equivalent of a beautiful shotgun to the head," and that's not far from the truth. The first single Born To Lose and the second release Comeback Kid (below) demonstrate that Derek Miller and Alexis Krauss will continue to deliver dark electric rock music that stings like shrapnel and challenges the present day idea of popular music.
Port of MorrowThe Shins
The Shins in five years, Port of Morrow promises to be just what I had hoped for; another solid collection of classic guitar rock. Their last album, Wincing The Night Away, proved to be the largest success The Shins had ever had (and it was the biggest hit for Sub Pop as well) so the five year break was to be expected as expectations are ridiculously high. Now that they've left that label and replaced many of their members, Port of Morrow may have a different taste but judging from the first single (Simple Song, listen below) the ingredients are the same. A dash of indie pop and a pinch of punk makes Port of Morrow a potent rock recipe.