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Old 12-08-2018, 08:31 AM   #21 (permalink)
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^ An absolute stunner for sure!


22. Palest Hue - City Underground


Genre(s): Psychedelia, Paisley Underground, "Laurel Canyon" Pop, Acid Rock

Sounds Like: Gordon Lightfoot, Fleetwood Mac (1968 - '73) The Doors, Brian Auger's Oblivion Express


These guys are so deep underground you'd have to get a bulldozer to drag them out of the mausoleum. Released to little fanfare earlier this year, I only discovered this remarkably groovy debut thanks to windsock on another thread, and since that point I find myself returning to it's strange, affecting atmosphere often. It sounds both like and so unlike anything that's out there that it's hard to pin down their exact musical coordinates. The singer is the easiest reference point for me - he's the long lost cousin of both Jim Morrison and Gordon Lightfoot, and his wistful, soulful approach to these cavernous little pieces is quite something to behear. While the best 'hook' of the album is reserved for opener "Maybe In Time', there's also touches of Tropicalia and the darkness of early 70's acid folk seeped into the DNA of 'On The Corner' and even a little early Chicago (sans horn section) punch to closer 'She Waits'.

Phenomenally moody yet crackling with underlying energy, these guys have amazing potential and I think this is just a taste of what's to come.



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My Top 30 Albums of 2018
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Old 12-08-2018, 10:48 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
27. Tropical **** Storm - A Laughing Death In Meatspace
Struck me as very birthday party-ish.
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Old 12-08-2018, 09:35 PM   #23 (permalink)
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22. Palest Hue - City Underground
Ayyyy
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I don't want to rec you anything, I want you to stop posting actually
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:51 PM   #24 (permalink)
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OccultHawk: Definitely a resemblance here and there. I'm only thinking it after you pointed it out though.

windsock: Yea boi you hooked me up wit some gud stuff. Kudos.


21. Sophie - Oil Of Every Pearl's Un-Insides


Genre(s): Avant-garde IDM Electro-Ambient Pop

Sounds Like: Knower, After Dinner, Charli XCX (on cocaine), iamamiwhoami, Clarence Clarity, Trevor Something


While perhaps a bit tame compared to the most out-of-left-field stuff I've ever encountered, Sophie really made 2018 her year with this fantastic debut after years of being in the shadows of other people's output. Who would have thought that something with such an abstract ambient influence with industrial and vaporwave twinges would have captured the imagination of people who normally wouldn't touch experimental music witha 10 foot pole?

While she's not quite up there yet in sheer pop smarts like KNOWER or the Quincy Jones-groomed Jacob Collier, it is hard to argue with the dynamics of opening ballad 'It's Okay To Cry', a deceptive yet killer single which should stoke the imagination of anyone who fell in love with Kate Bush during her weirdest moments, or the gorgeous yet terrifying cinematic feeling that 'Pretending' brings on like a light through the clouds. It doesn't hurt that there's real dancefloor potential with 'Ponyboy' as well, a track that has yielded seemingly infinite remixes and covers on YouTube so far with no end in sight.

My point of view is that anything that bends the mainstream even a little bit towards the beautiful, more esoteric side of art is certainly not a bad thing. And that's what Sophie does in spades. Here's to a long and illustrious career!



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My Top 30 Albums of 2018
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:02 PM   #25 (permalink)
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^ Kill it. Kill it with fire.
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Old 12-10-2018, 07:33 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I hope you donít mind me going through these with my little comments

Quote:
26. Mr. Fingers - Cerebral Hemispheres
You wrote a great review of this record. I think I would have enjoyed it a bit more if it had focused on the more abstract side. Some of it kind of reminded me of Talk Talk and I wouldíve been pleased to hear more in that direction.
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Old 12-10-2018, 07:52 PM   #27 (permalink)
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^ Kill it. Kill it with fire.
Agreed. This bubblegum pop from hell should not be allowed to exist.
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Old 12-10-2018, 08:59 PM   #28 (permalink)
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OccultHawk: Larry Heard has a long n' diverse body of work, ranging from late 80's Talk Talk levels of experimentation to poppy Aphex Twin / Paul Hardcastle territory...so it can be a bit of a game to see what side of him works "best" for you. This particular album has him indulging a bit of both, so I'm glad you liked some of it.

Zhanteimi and windsock: TBH I don't really agree with Sophie's life choices and I think the album is a weird listen. But it's still interesting and this list is a mix of albums I really loved / albums I thought stood out to me in some way.

Anyhoo...


20. VOLA - Applause Of A Distant Crowd


Genre(s): Progressive Metal / Synth-Pop

Sounds Like: Mew, Voyager, Karnivool, The Pineapple Thief, early A-ha


A rising star in Denmark's rock and metal world, and for good reason: this is some stadium class songwriting that should put them up there with the big boys. The modern rock pleb in me loves this overall sound they craft: like one of those modern groovy Australian groups with an unmistakably talented new Romantic-styled vocalist who really brings the melody. Their biggest influence is definitely Mew, but their focus is heavier, almost djent-ish at times but without the grating production.

The biggest standout here upon first listen is 'Alien Shivers', which has a ridiculously well constructed groove and hook that puts it into instant earworm territory when that magical chorus hits. Like their Aussie cousins Voyager, they have a knack for synth lines - second cut 'Ghosts' sparkles off the speakers and the title track brims with a Balearic, almost shoegaze-ish progression. That's not to say there aren't some legitimate metal cuts here - 'Smartfriend' has a juicy, classic Meshuggah stomp to it and 'Whaler' brings in some cool Middle Eastern styled melodies with its sludgey main riff.

There are a few others on the melodic rock / metal / prog spectrum I really enjoyed this year, but VOLA's sophomore outing stood out as an early AOTY contender and remained as such the more I listened to it. Highly recommended.



__________________
My Top 30 Albums of 2018
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frownland
You can't blame the Jews for everything...just most things.
Quote:
Originally Posted by OccultHawk
Trump might be the best thing since free jazz.

Last edited by Anteater; 12-10-2018 at 09:08 PM.
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Old 12-10-2018, 09:26 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
OccultHawk: Larry Heard has a long n' diverse body of work, ranging from late 80's Talk Talk levels of experimentation to poppy Aphex Twin / Paul Hardcastle territory...so it can be a bit of a game to see what side of him works "best" for you. This particular album has him indulging a bit of both, so I'm glad you liked some of it.
You got a suggestion for me fancy?
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Old 12-11-2018, 09:19 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Lemmings Suicide Myth - Lemmings Suicide Myth
Iím feeling comparisons to MMW & the Bad Plus.
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