Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

MP3s: Electro / pop

September 22, 2015

I’ve got a lot of singles to catch up on. All these that I’m posting over the next few days have been sent my way over the past two months.

Electro / pop

1. “it was gone” – Orchid Mantis. Somehow combines found sounds, heavily processed vocals, insistent synths and stuttering drums into great clouds of sound. It’s a gem.

2. “Iron & Wood” – Quinn Erwin. Erwin, of the brilliant Afterlife Parade, turns his impeccable songwriting talent toward synth-driven pop-rock. The results are just as dynamic and exciting as his band’s forays into anthemic guitar rock and artsy post-rock. The lyrics, the vocal melodies, and the arrangement just all work together like clockwork.

3. “Nothing Can Stop Us Now” – Summer Heart. The song title and band name are perfect for this tune that balances wiry energy and dreamy vocals to create the soundtrack to a carefree summer afternoon.

4. “Go” – Sunday Lane. Lane isolates the chorus and lets that hook live on its own, letting the rest of the song draw its energy from the perky declaration, “Where we gonna go?”

5. “Everything at Once” – Her Magic Wand. Sonic texture is something I don’t call out that often, but this electro-pop track has some really nice layering of disparate sounds that give the tune a compelling sonic consistency.

6. “We Are Golden” – Nova Heart. Burbling synths, LCD Soundsystem-esque bass riffs, a buttery smooth mood, and luscious vocals make this mesmerizing electro-rock jam an easy fit for the dancefloor or the rock club.

7. “Broken” – Featurette. The herky-jerky rhythms of this tune rub up against the silky synths to create that juxtaposition that plays so nicely in electro: the jagged smooth, the spiky soft.

8. “Shake It Loose” – Astronauts, etc. If you need any suave, svelte, seductive babymaking music, this tune has my vote.

9. “Beachside” – Heather Larose. This acoustic-pop song makes me want to dance in my computer chair. ‘Nuff said.

10. “Tied Up” – Level and Tyson. Scandinavians have the most eccentric lenses when it comes to pop music: we’ve got Surrounded-style distorted vocals, walking-speed acoustic-vibes, ’90s-esque drum beat and some humming background vocals. The results are unique, to say the least.

11. “Lovers Can Be Monsters” – Roger Harvey. Harvey bears the burden of having a voice and genre similar to Ben Gibbard’s, but it would be a shame to pass up this addictive, oddly tender indie-rock track due to unasked-for similarities. I want to listen to this over and over.

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

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