Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

November Singles 4

November 12, 2016

1. “Crocodile” – Folk is People. With that gentle repudiation of the term folk in the band name, you’d expect this to be a genre-savvy work. And it is: there’s some nice acoustic fingerpicking welded to a pop-rock drums-and-bass chassis, but it explodes into overdriven garage rock for the chorus (but retains strong melodic vocal lines). A really fun ride.

2. “The Hardest Lesson” – Brock’s Folly. Starts out as a pensive, pastoral folk song, then ratchets up to a scratchy indie-rock stomp: “the hardest lesson I ever learned / was to let my young ambitions burn / now they’re gone.”

3. “Stovetop Coffee” – The Northern Folk. There’s a touch of Gregory Alan Isakov’s romanticism here paired with a more punchy folk arrangement that features a warm horn section.

4. “Summer Nun” – Tri-State. Punchy, thoughtful indie-pop-rock that incorporates some Eastern sounds into its mix without sacrificing any of their pop charm.

5. “Je Danse Dans La Discotheque Avec Toulouse Lautrec” – Christine Leakey. This relentlessly inventive, wild pastiche of sounds comes off like being trapped in a music box that is rapidly becoming unhinged: operatic vocals, frantic piano, saxophone, French, and more contribute to an incredibly fascinating tune.

6. “Nobody Else” – Wy. Starts off as a cavernous electro freeze-out and then blossoms into punchy mid-tempo guitar-pop for the chorus.

7. “Late Night Store” – Husky. This indie rock tune with some electro-dance elements actual sounds like the vibe you might find at a late night store as you’re going out to the club (or if you’re really excited to be going home)–not giddy, but excited, and with some seedy atmosphere in the background.

8. “Break” – ADLT VIDEO. This electro-pop tune hooked me entirely on the strength and prominence of the bass work (The bassist/bass keyboardist/downtuned guitar gets a solo!). The rest of the song is pretty solid, from the vocals to the arrangements, but I’m here for the bass.

9. “Genesis” – Grex. Pensive, patient electro that is a little more active than ambient but not by much. The mood is delicious.

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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