This is a list of 10 great releases of this year's summer (that unfortunately just came to an end) composed by both people (Will and Aleks) involved in this blog. So have a look and catch up with anything you missed! Not in any particular order.
(24 July 2012/Last Gang Records Inc.)
Megan James and Corin Roddick seem to be really aware what is expected from modern music. The Canadian duo have moved from being an internet sensation to a widely recognizable project. Without using catchy melodies, this calculated mixture of currently hip music genres gives us a great album, that simply makes listener want more.
(28 August 2012/Tri Angle Records)
Holy Other's first full-length album is definitely proof of his development. In contrast to his previous releases that were focused on strong feeling released to the outside world, 'Held' is more about looking inside to the point of complete nothingness, not loosing the artist's recognizable luridness. For me it's just ideal for listening alone, in bed, wrapped in a duvet.
Buy from Boomkat
(28 August 2012/Captured Tracks)
After the release of Jack Tatum's two dreamy singles this year we've now been pampered with a full-length. 'Nocturne' is kept the same nostalgic style as his previous releases with the artist's vocals always working well in creating it's atmosphere. Seems to be Wild Nothing's most polished album, however, it didn't evoke such strong feelings in me as 'Golden Haze' or 'Gemini' managed to.
Full Stream|Buy|Get a free poster
(1 August 2012/self released)
For majority of the album Michael Coomer maintains familiar Harlem's style known from 'Hippies' although is noticeably more serious, without this sense of positive playfulness. However, some songs definitely stand out and don't bring on mind his previous work (eg. 'Cleopatra' which seems to be inspired by The Velvet Underground).
Dirty Projectors- Swing Lo
(9 July 2012/Domino Records)
Dirty Projectors' seventh full length saw David Longstreth and co expand on the success and accessibility of 2009's Bitte Orca. Drawing on influences as disparate as Lil Wayne and Bob Dylan, Swing Lo managed to find a balance between complexity and restraint, experimentalism and traditional pop structures.
Delicate Steve- Positive Force
(10 July 2012/Luaka Bop)
Mid-July brought about one of the most joyous summer records in recent memory. Delicate Steve's Positive Force is blissfully sunny from beginning to end, soaking its listeners with highlife guitar, afrobeat percussion and harmonious "oohs". Thrillingly travelled, yet right at home in the bustling American metropolis, Positive Tension is an album deserving of widespread attention.
Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti- Mature Themes (20 August 2012/4AD)
Californian oddball Ariel Rosenberg continued his adventures in a 'proper' studio, following 2010's Before Today. Not quite as focused as its predecessor, the record recalled his earlier days of bedroom recording, with mouth drums and a ramshackle feel. Arguably though, Mature Themes features some of Rosenberg's strongest works, with Kinski Assassin, Schnitzel Boogie and the album's title track particularly shining.
Grizzly Bear- Shields
(18 September 2012/Warp)
To be honest, after listening to this album from one of the most important Brooklyn indie-folk bands for the first time I couldn't say that it was anything more than 'ok'. After the second listen I was already convinced that the album is very good, now I love it. Beautiful harmonies, flowing melodies, well thought out on so many levels. 'Shields' is an album that requires a bit of patience but is definitely worth it.
(3 September 2012/Gringo Records)
'Dreamlands' is probably the only release on this list that could be described as a bit heavier and that's why you really shouldn't have missed it! This is the first full-length album of London and Brighton based punky four-piece Sauna Youth that have been around for about two years already. Definitely makes me wanna get frantic within sweaty crowd in some dusty mal-illuminated venue.
(18 June 2012/Sexbeat)
Even though it's not even an EP I just couldn't allow myself to omit this. I fell in love with 'Green Sea' backed up by wonderful 'Born' with the first listen. Delicate guitar combined with absolutely charming vocals are stuck in my head for ever. In positive way of course. I really could listen to this on loop for a long time and not get bored.