One of Britain’s most prized exports since the mid 2000s, The Horrors could have easily have let the polarizing effect of their initial splash direct (or inhibit) evolution. Their brat-fab mascara rock package would’ve made a fine re-gift commercially, of course to diminishing returns critically. Instead, they’ve honed in focus and taken some large stylistic steps; LP2, Primary Colors, traded the garage-goth in for Krautrock. And now LP3 has refined it—actually buried it in shoegaze pop. The grand Skying is by far their most spacious and mature release yet.
[BoxTitle]Arrange: Plantation[/BoxTitle] [Listen]http://arrange.bandcamp.com/[/Listen]
Tragic is one of those words that can really follow certain albums around (think: The Antler’s Hospice). It’s a reference to mood, and Plantation has plenty of it: sparse, slow-building piano/guitar arrangements, darkly clouded in ambient static, all occupied by the poised but troubled voice of Fort Lauderdale’s Malcom Lacey. It’s an impressively rich LP given its teenage origin, with a heart-achingly contemplative appeal at times recalling a young Conor Oberst, while feeling every bit in the present, post-bedroom world.
[BoxTitle]Little Dragon: Ritual Union[/BoxTitle] [Listen]http://www.npr.org/2011/07/18/137855136/first-listen-little-dragon-ritual-union[/Listen] [BuyNow]http://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/ritual-union/id444929109?i=444929110&ign-mpt=uo%3D4[/BuyNow]
Ritual Union is the third album from this Swedish electro-soul foursome, and might be a first impression for those who thought Little Dragon was just that one girl who guested on the last Gorillaz album. It’s true, the star here is singer Yukimi Nagano. She ices sultry lines, sometimes resting above the head-nod inducing undertones, other times manipulated right inside them.
[BoxTitle]Fair Ohs: Everything Is Dancing[/BoxTitle] [MusicVideos]http://vimeo.com/22989193[/MusicVideos] [BuyNow]http://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/fair-ohs/id443079652?ign-mpt=uo%3D4[/BuyNow]
Your search for the good times summer BBQ album is over. At mp3 value, London’s Fair Ohs make harmless tropic rock not unlike a number of afropop era Paul Simon indebted acts. In album terms, that fun-level could potentially burn out, but luckily Everything Is Dancing changes pitch enough for the long haul. Take “Almost Island”, which repeats the glory punk tagline “my friends are tough” before dissolving into three minutes of wind-chimed noise (what appears to be an add-on to the early track)—they’re aiming for something more than just hooks.
[BoxTitle]Inc.: 3EP[/BoxTitle] [Listen]http://www.4ad.com/artists/inc[/Listen]
Recent victims to the patented Forkast bait and review switch, Inc. (formerly Teen Inc.) rode buzzwaves on a pair of catchy Prince-esq electro jammers before this proper debut EP. The pipe hasn’t crashed entirely—this thing is still plenty interesting—but those two promising tracks from the LA-based brothers remain the strongest to date. A full length is due next year, and we’ll have to wait and see how they’ll swim.