airiel- the battle of sealand
Chicago quartet Airiel has released a series of EPs, but this is the band's first album, and it is an ambitious one, running over 63 minutes (or over 61, if you subtract the two minutes of silence that separate the end of the final track, "The Big Mash-Up," from an instrumental coda that constitutes a hidden track). It isn't only the length of the CD that's ambitious, it's the music. On each song, Airiel fills the speakers with echoing, shimmering sound, so much so that it is the sheer sound that dominates the experience of listening to the album. On their own, they are sometimes despairing, sometimes descriptive, and, in "Stay," romantic to the point of amounting to a marriage proposal. But there's no way to tell that by merely listening to the album. Rather, the musical intention clearly is to create a sense of aural majesty that sometimes devolves down to industrial noise. In such a maelstrom, individual details don't count for much.
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tough alliance- a new chance
The hottest electronic pop duo to come out of Gothenburg. This is the much awaited follow up to their debut "New School".
division of laura lee- das not compute
Don't confuse them with anybody else -- they're less angular than the Hives, and smoother and more complex than the Danish Raveonettes. Swedish quintet Division of Laura Lee is in fine form in their sophomore album. "Das Not Compute" is a spare, intense blast of punk rock that doesn't disappoint.
A catchy drum solo draws you in, right before the revved-up riffs start in "Does Compute." Following up is the cataclysmic rocker "We Are Numbers," the gentle spaciness of "Breathe Breathe," and the distorted bounce of "Dirty Love" and "Loveless." Finishing it off is a three-song cycle of raw rockers, followed by the startling, sad "There's A Last Time For Everything."
Division of Laura Lee has that rare quality in punk or punk revival music -- it has that elusive catchiness that bands like the Clash had, but it keeps that raw, explosive edge. They have the energy and darkness that sounds startlingly fresh, even when revamped with a slight new wave edge.
the honeydrips- here comes the future
Swedish acoustic electro outfit.
thrushes- sun come undone
Venerating Phil Spector as the patron saint of sonic emotion, the premise is strikingly simple. Rock music should be beautiful. Harvey's guitar work elevates grand canyon reverb to high art. More canvas than skeletal structure, its wall of sound is huge and enveloping. Giving form to these dreamscapes are Conner's simple, pretty vocal lines, which she colors with clean, clear guitar picking. Out of the sonic swirl, Tracy manages to distill a bass line somewhere between rock-steady groove and the root melody of a lullaby. Her parts construct a visible road map for drummer Davis to effortlessly meander through. With bells and shakers sitting on a table beside the hihat, his drumming is more orchestral than rock'n'roll and is peppered with beautiful triangle and xylophone melodies.
On Sun Come Undone, their debut full length, Thrushes craft gorgeous noise pop and swirling dream rock. Opening with the cavernous drumming of "Aidan Quinn" into the revved-up, fuzzed out Jesus And Mary Chain-esque "Heartbeats," and carried through the nods to Deadcan Dance in "Loyalty" and haunted claps of guitar thunder on "Ghost Train," to the final feedback soaked fallout of "The Hardest Part," this is the sound of blood on blood.
i might go see them at the Fire this Friday. here's the info:
Fri 4/11 @ 9pm $7
House of Fire
Music For Headphones
412 West Girard Ave Philadelphia, PA 19123