Archive Page 2

Liss – “Sorry”


Danish teens Liss immediately caught my attention with their debut single last year, “Try.” I wasn’t the only one, as their third track to date, “Sorry,” is their debut for the eternally cool XL Recordings. It’s their most accomplished song to date, bringing a mixture of pop-leaning heartbreak and unconventional structures to continue to bring Arthur Russell to mind. Continue reading ‘Liss – “Sorry”’

Starchild & The New Romantic – “I Didn’t Mean 2 Turn U On (Cherrelle Cover)


Young phenom Starchild (born Bryndon Cook) already has an amazing resume as session/touring guitarist for Solange, Blood Orange, and Kindness. That should be enough for you to check out his debut EP, Crucial which is an insanely promising and smooth, filled with nods to Prince and spectral R&B pioneers of all sorts. Here, he gives a funky, spaced-out take on a defining ’80s jheri jam, Cherrelle’s “I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On.” Continue reading ‘Starchild & The New Romantic – “I Didn’t Mean 2 Turn U On (Cherrelle Cover)’

Cassius feat. Cat Power & Mike D – “Action”


I probably won’t put a song this high profile (and, in blog-years, old) in the newsletter often, but it’s probably my favorite song of 2016 so far. Can you blame me?! I’ve been waiting with baited breath for their return since “Youth Speed Trouble Cigarettes,” and they brought two heavy-hitters in for a ’70s-disco tribute. This shit was made in a lab for me. Continue reading ‘Cassius feat. Cat Power & Mike D – “Action”’

Whitney – “Golden Days”


This is my first year of skipping winter, and there was something perfect about this song debuting just as New Orleans reached a stretch of 70+ degree weather. This song is made for crushing beers on the porch or riding around with your friends. Continue reading ‘Whitney – “Golden Days”’

Death Is Not The End: A Mixtape For Marques Gaines


When I first met Marques, things in my life were changing. I was rapidly coming out of my shell and becoming the kind of person I’d always wanted to be, and I was just starting to see Katie, the girl I’m marrying this September. I hadn’t met any of Katie’s friends from Chicago at that point, which made me a bit nervous when she said that she wanted me to meet her good friend Marques, describing him as her male equivalent. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but that feeling dissipated the minute I walked into a Manhattan gay bar and shook his hand. Instant connections are extremely rare for me: friendships happen over time, gradually. With Marques, though, it was like lightning striking in a crowded room. The coolest guy in the vicinity wanted to talk to me in a hurry about bands, books, music festivals, mutual friends, the scene in New York. Continue reading ‘Death Is Not The End: A Mixtape For Marques Gaines’

Cullen Omori and Whitney: The Dreamy Ashes of the Smith Westerns


Once every few years, a rock band comes along that encapsulates the “forever young” ethos for a particular age group (much like Joy Again), and Chicago’s Smith Westerns were that band for a moment. 2011’s Dye It Blonde, which contained the classic tune “Weekend,” was a hazy memorial to hazy late nights and romantic yearning. It was a bit of a lightning in a bottle situation, since 2013’s Soft Will was pleasant and fun but forgettable. It didn’t come as a surprise, then, to find out that the album was made out of obligation and that it caused the band to formally break up not long after. Thankfully, the brains behind the operation are now putting out incredible music of their own, with singer Cullen Omori debuting his new solo project and guitarist Max Kakacek debuting his new band, Whitney. Continue reading ‘Cullen Omori and Whitney: The Dreamy Ashes of the Smith Westerns’

Joy Again – “Looking Out For You” / “How You Feel”

It hasn’t felt like it with back-to-back think pieces on the blog, but music brings as much happiness as it does sadness and introspection. To end the week, I thought I’d share a newer band that’s been making me happy: Philadelphia’s Joy Again. It tends to fade sooner rather than later, but some bands know how to perfectly exude that forever young slack-rock feeling in the best way possible. Their first 7″ see its release today, and both tracks are well worth your time. Joy Again first came to my attention via none other than Shamir, who appears in the band’s video above. This is a track meant to put a smile on your face. Stream the downbeat b-side, “How You Feel,” after the jump and make sure to support the band’s new release if you dig it! Continue reading ‘Joy Again – “Looking Out For You” / “How You Feel”’

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