September Best Releases

September

Wake me up when September ends, a famous Green Day song says. Now that we all are woken up from the end of vacations and the beginning of crazy hours at works, let’s see which were the best music releases. Fantastic month!

Aphex Twin – Syro (Ambient Techno, Experimental Electronic)

Difficult to describe such a genius like Aphex Twin, an ‘anti-star’ who doesn’t use social networks to promote his stuff but ALL the best music magazines talked about him when rumors of a new work came out. Of course they were curious after a long waiting (13 years!), but his art (in music, design, videos, some of them flilmed by Chris Cunningham) was and is worldwide recognized. His new work is exactly like his previous ones, classic but original at the same time! Complex.

ALT-J – This is All Yours (Alternative/Indie Rock)

Make a second LP after the debut worldwide success is not easy, but this english band were able to do a very pleasant album, on the false line of the previous work. It will guarantees the same success? In the meanwhile listen to it and tell me what you think about, i personally liked. Refined.

Interpol – El Pintor (New Wave, Post Punk, Indie Rock)

After four years from their previous self-titled album (after the masterpiece Our Love To Admire), they go back with another amazing work. In my opinion not at the same level of their debut album and the one mentioned above, but still a powerful LP. Self-Conscious.

Tricky – Adrian Thaws (Trip Hop, Indie Electronic)

I didn’t expect another work only one year after False Idols. Apparently he is being very creative lately. Anyway, i love him, some work more, some less but i will always recommend something coming out from him (and the wonderful voice of Frnacesca Belmonte). Visceral.

Julian Casablancas + The Voidz – Tyranny (Indie Rock, New Wave)

Second ‘kinda-solo’ work (it’s actually a collaboration with The Voidz band) for the lead singer of The Strokes. It can be an album coming from his most famous band, short songs (except one that is 11 minutes long), straight til the end (you only need 1 hour to listen it all). Bittersweet.

Death From Above 1979 – The Physical World (Alternative/Indie Rock)

Well well when did we see each other before? Something like that happened to this cool canadian duo who reunited again after 10 years from their boom with ‘You’re a woman, i’m a machine’. They went through other projects but -fortunately for us- decided to collaborate again and go back with a very intense (and short) work! Volatile.

Simian Mobile Disco – Whorl (Ambient Techno, Electronic)

A bit different from their usual style, this work is collection of remixes made during their DJing around the world. I like when musicians try new stuff, even if different from their genres and it could possibly make them lose audience. Life without risks is boring! Technical.

Erol Alkan – Fabriclive 77 (Electro-House, House-Tech)

Another chapter of the compilation Fabriclive this time cured by the talented british/turkish DJ. Twenty songs, remixes and collaborations that make this compilation very enjoyable. Energetic.

Karen O – Crush Songs (Indie Rock)

Yeah Yeah Yeah’s singer (for the ones who sadly don’t know her), published her second solo project with a collection of lo-fi songs. They can be normal songs but her voice (one of the most enchanting ones) make them great! Far from YYY’s style, much more relaxed. Intimate.

July-August Best Releases

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In August i have decided to put together these two months because there weren’t SO many good releases. I was supposed to write it early september but work was so busy that i couldn’t make it before!

Plastikman – Ex (Acid Techno, Minimal Techno)

Worldwide known as Richie Hawtin, he came back to his parallel project who gave him a huge audience in the 90’s. And it seems nothing changed much from his last work as Plastikman, however there’s a more modern touch in this amazing work. Trippy.

Basement Jaxx – Junto (Club/Dance, Progressive House)

It’s really difficult to include them in some categories. Since their beginning they mixed different kind of music together in an explosive pandora’s box. Their talent is still there, but their previous LPs were unique. Anyway very enjoyable work. Hedonistic.

Chicks on Speed – Artstravaganza (Electro-Clash, Indie Rock, Indie Electronic)

One of the most influent electro-clash bands in the late 90’s came back with a new work. The style of this feminine duo is more or less the same, when you listen their songs you have the feeling of freedom, fun and happiness! Yoko Ono and Juliane Assange also appears in this work. Detached.

Spoon – They Want My Soul (Alternative/Indie Rock)

After 4 years and other side projects (like the amazing project Divine Fits), the band from Texas come back together with a very interesting work! In my opinion they are one of the best Indie Rock bands ever. Every work have a very nice touch dressed with the amazing Britt Daniel’s voice. Ironic.

The Raveonettes – Pe’ahi (Indie Rock)

Another good work for this famous danish duo. In this LP sounds seems to be darker, the only limit in my opinion is their voices that seems always in the same tone. Sounds make the difference in their case. Visceral.

See you in few weeks with the amazing September releases!

June Best Releases

Heartbpm

In the best month of the year (because it’s my birthday) very interesting works came out.

JACK WHITE – Lazaretto (Alternative Pop/Rock, Punk Blues)

Second solo work for one of the best rock artists nowadays! After The White Stripes, Raconteurs, Dead Weather projects, he seems to continue by himself (and in an amazing way like everything he has done). The style is pretty much the same, but always pleasant to listen. Confident.

DEADMAU5 – While (1<2) (Electronic, House, EDM)

Very cool double LP for the canadian author/producer Joel Thomas Zimmermann (more appeal as deadmau5, right?). Comparing to official works, he remixes songs from other artists like, for example, Nine Inch Nails or How to Destroy Angels. Definitely a different and interesting way to love more the mouse (who i highly recommend to see live). Freewheeling.

KLAXONSLove Frequency (Alternative/Indie Rock)

Four years after ‘Surfing the Void’ that personally didn’t…

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June Best Releases

In the best month of the year (because it’s my birthday) very interesting works came out.

JACK WHITE – Lazaretto (Alternative Pop/Rock, Punk Blues)

Second solo work for one of the best rock artists nowadays! After The White Stripes, Raconteurs, Dead Weather projects, he seems to continue by himself (and in an amazing way like everything he has done). The style is pretty much the same, but always pleasant to listen. Confident.

DEADMAU5 – While (1<2) (Electronic, House, EDM)

Very cool double LP for the canadian author/producer Joel Thomas Zimmermann (more appeal as deadmau5, right?). Comparing to official works, he remixes songs from other artists like, for example, Nine Inch Nails or How to Destroy Angels. Definitely a different and interesting way to love more the mouse (who i highly recommend to see live). Freewheeling.

KLAXONS Love Frequency (Alternative/Indie Rock)

Four years after ‘Surfing the Void’ that personally didn’t rnjoy much, UK band Klaxons came back with an interesting LP, mixed also with some electronic. It seems that they didn’t want to reply ‘Myths of the Near Future’ like the following work, but they want to go forward and, in my opinion, is a good choice. Playful.

THE KNIFE –Shaken Up Versions (Indie Electronic, IDM)

Following the masterpiece Shaking the Habitual, they made an album with remixes of songs from the last work but also from previous ones. Sparkling.

RADIO MOSCOW – Magical Dirt (Blues Rock, Indie Rock)

Coming from Iowa, this interesting trio come back after 2 years with this very enjoyable work. Their style didn’t change much over the years so you won’t be shocked listening this last release. But they always make good works. Boisterous.

 

May Best Releases

Heartbpm

 

I was going to put together May and June but so many good releases were published in May that i have decided to make one dedicated. Sorry for the delay, but it’s never too late to listen good music, right?

 The Horrors – Luminous (Indie Rock, Garage Rock)

Fourth work for this band coming from UK. Their style didn’t change much since their previous -fantastic- album (Strange House) but they became less ‘dark’ in my opinion. I personally enjoyed all their works, just Skying didn’t impress me much. Anyway, still a very nice work! Trippy.

Archie Bronson Outfit – Wild Crush (Garage Punk, Indie Rock)

In my opinion they are one of the greatest bands nowadays. It’s also their 4th work and i can say that making a following work after masterpiece ‘Coconut’ was not easy. But they bravely continued on the false line of it, making a…

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May Best Releases

 

I was going to put together May and June but so many good releases were published in May that i have decided to make one dedicated. Sorry for the delay, but it’s never too late to listen good music, right?

 The Horrors – Luminous (Indie Rock, Garage Rock)

Fourth work for this band coming from UK. Their style didn’t change much since their previous -fantastic- album (Strange House) but they became less ‘dark’ in my opinion. I personally enjoyed all their works, just Skying didn’t impress me much. Anyway, still a very nice work! Trippy.

Archie Bronson Outfit – Wild Crush (Garage Punk, Indie Rock)

In my opinion they are one of the greatest bands nowadays. It’s also their 4th work and i can say that making a following work after masterpiece ‘Coconut’ was not easy. But they bravely continued on the false line of it, making a super nice LP (only 32 min but very intense), fresh, rough and very involving. I also really enjoy their videos. I highly recommend them! Crunchy.

Swans – To Be Kind (Noise Rock, Post Punk, Experimental Rock)

Who has grown up with rock in general and Sonic Youth’s noise rock, obviously knows Swans, american band formed in the post punk NYC era in the ’80s. I admit that sometimes can be too extreme with their sounds, but this last work is a great one. Frontman Michael Gira still surpises with his energy. Raucous.

Robyn/Royksopp – Do It Again EP (Electronic, Downbeat, Alternative Dance)

After the amazing collaboration in the last norwegian duo LP ‘Junior’ (with the amazing song “the girl and the robot”), Roykspp and Robyn did it again. And the result is still very nice, hopefully we’ll also get a full album! Light.

Sébastien Tellier – L’Aventura (French Pop, Ambient Pop)

One of the most creative and changeable artists we have at the moment. Because of the world cup probably, he made a LP recorded between france and brazil, adding other influences in his -already rich- background. Ethereal.

Plaid – Reachy Prints (Electronic, Ambient-Techno)

Turning more into electro, English duo Plaid came back after their very good work ‘Scintilli’. Still published on Warp Records, this LP is a very good mix of different sounds mixed with electronic.

Mr. Scruff – Friendly Bacteria (Electronic, Electro-Funk)

Staying in UK, Andy Carthy came back after a break (his last LP was published in 2008). It’s a typical Mr.Scruff work, full of influences and different styles put together in a Pandora’s box. Animated.

Haunted Hearts – Initiation (Indie Rock, Neo Psychedelia, New Wave)

First work of this duo (they are together also in their life actually) made by Dee Dee (Dum Dum Girls) and Brandon (Crocodiles). The style reflects their original projects so if you like these bands, i’m pretty sure you will like this interesting mix! Rowdy.

 

 

 

March-April Best Releases

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If March was a slow month for good music releases, April was definitely a richer month with many interesting news!

Liars – Mess (Indie Rock, Indie Electronic)

In my opinion, as you could have guessed from my previous posts, this New Yorker band is one of the most creative and changeable bands. Over the years, they made different styles but with a unique touch. Their last work turned more into electronic sounds compared with the previous ones, but, guys, an amazing work (also for their artwork)! For now it’s the best 2014 LP in my opinion. Uncompromising.

Damon Albarn – Everyday Robots (Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop)

Well i have to say something about him? Beside his career with Blur he made several side-projects (from Gorillaz until The Good, The Bad & The Queen), in my opinion very creative and different from each others. This solo LP is a mix of acoustic and digital sounds, very soft and pleasant company during your busy day. Spacey.

The Faint – Doom Abuse (New Wave, Post Punk, Indie Rock)

I admit i have just discovered this band but i really enjoyed them from the first listening (i hope will be the same for you). Their style is intense and involving. Brash.

Kelis – Food (Alternative R&B)

I know what you are thinking, What? Do you like Kelis? How does she fits into your tastes? I have to admit that i like some rap and R&B artists and she’s one of them. I like her irreverent voice and, obviously, her music! Exuberant.

Eels – The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett (Pop Rock, Indie Rock)

Only 1 year after their previous work, comes out this ‘kinda self-titles’ work. Much more quiet than “Wonderful, Glorious”, you can find nice pop-rock ballads dressed with Everett’s scratched voice. Gentle.

Kaiser Chiefs – Education, Education, Education & War (Pop Rock, Brit Pop, Indie Rock)

Still far from their first 2 works -that still are the best- this LP try to get back to their ‘golden time’ and partially they get to the point. But, you know, when you start with a real amazing product, it’s very difficult to stay high. Volatile.

Squarepusher – Music for Robots EP (Experimental Electronic, IDM)

Looking into the future when we’ll probably be replaced by machines, Squarepusher realized this EP where there are not humans but robots. The style is ‘pure Squarepusher’ in his most experimental way! Complex.

Thievery Corporation – Saudade (Downbeat, Brazilian Pop)

Friends who personally know me will think: ‘you have just travelled to brazil, thats why you like it’. Well, i loved Brazil, but before it, i appreciated Thievery Corporation’s music! This american band always like to explore new sounds, from middle east to south america! i like their ‘chameleonic’ style! Laid-Back.

OFF! – Wasted Years (Punk)

As most of the artists i mentioned today, also OFF! come from USA. After their first self-titled first album, they come back with this nice work, pure punk style, short and irreverent songs. Energetic.

 

Best LPs Ever ! #1 In Utero – Nirvana (1993)

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Inspired by the 20th Kurt Cobain’s anniversary death, i introduce you to a new section where i will suggest the masterpieces you HAVE TO listen at least once (i hope you did already) and eventually collect (if you are music-sick like me).

Obviously Nevermind represents the ‘break-up’ album (it’s also a real masterpiece) and Smells Like Teen Spirit is considered their best song, since “Nirvana’s bomb” definitely exploded in the music scene with that work. Nevertheless In Utero is the perfection realized into music.

I still remember the moment i’ve listened the first song of this album “Frances Farmer will have her revenge on Seattle”, i was in my seahouse on my  bed resting in a very hot August late afternoon (i owned a yellow waterproof Sony walkman with radio at that time). First of all i was fascinated by the very simple and involving rhythm of this song, then also by the title and wanted to know more about Farmer’s history. She was a very famous actress who had a very tormented career ruined by drugs (she was sadly KC inspiration) and by psychiatrists whom practiced electro-shock therapy and -apparently- also lobotomy on her brain.

By the way this is the song:

The LP starts with the amazing “Serve the Servants”, goes through rough-on-purpose “Scentless Apprentice” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ao5Ey0SCHxo) getting to one of their most famous song (correlated with a very cool video in my opinion): “Heart Shaped Box”.

Sweet “Dumb” is followed by short-but-intense “Very Ape” until another ‘brutal’ song “Milk It”. All the album goes through strips, once you relax with a ballad, you jump right after with rough guitars!

So, “Radio Friendly Unit Shifter” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wIqEMZKGF4) comes after the relaxing “Pennyroyal Tea” and amazingly quite “All Apologies” after super-messy “Tourette’s”.

Usually when you listen a CD several times you get tired of it, that doesn’t happens with “In Utero” and i definitely have ‘overused’ it!

It’s a pity you left us so early, Kurt, but what an amazing job in such short time! Thanks anyway!

 

 

 

 

 

In our lives we all are Liars!

liars

Nowadays is difficult, in my opinion, to find a band who is creative in all the albums that they published, even more changing their style over the years.

They started to play in 2000 (seems recent but it’s already 14 years ago) in NYC (but originally they are from LA and Nebraska) invading post punk music scene with “They threw us all in a trench and stuck a monument on top”, a very ‘fast’ -in term of short and intense songs- and captivating LP.

Second work -“They were wrong so we drowned”- was more experimental (due also to musicians changes in the band), with some more electronic influences. The fact the LA guys were originally art students is clear when you see their creative videos (check the one below).

They moved to Berlin before their next work and, you know, when you go to Berlin something interesting happens in creativity. They published “Drum’s not dead”, an experimental work combined with short films made by the band and other filmmakers (like in the following video). You can find mellow songs ‘Beck-like’ or more noisy and instrumental ‘Sonic Youth-like’.

After only 1 year (we are in 2007 at this point, the album is called “Liars” itself) they get back to their original style made of scratching guitar riffs like the opening ‘Plaster casts of everything’ (the amazing video below) until the sweet notes of ‘Protection’. Very enjoyable but more commercial work.

Three years after they came back ‘home’ and created the double LP ‘Sisterworld’ in California. More atmospheric sounds but typical Liars changeable style, basically summarized by the song “Scissor”, quite mellow beginning followed by noisy and involving guitars (again also nice music video).

In 2012’s “WIXIW” (read as wish you) Liars turns into electronic sounds more constantly than before.

And now we -finally (especially for you who read)- arrive to their last work “Mess”, an intense work following (permanently?) electro beats and sounds from the previous WIXIW. Nice artworks (pics) and videos announced this last LP (2 trailers in the links below), it was one the few times i was really thrilled for a forthcoming album.

Some songs make it like a disco-electro work, beats are insistent and you cannot be calm without moving a little part of your body. In a certain way it can be a 2Manydj’s work.

I personally like all the styles they are performing over the years. Some people who liked their first noisy rock works can be disappointed but i think that every time some people will like your work, some others won’t.

It’s life and then you can’t believe to Liars.

January-February Best Releases

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Winter is almost over! We are going towards outdoor concerts and festivals, pretty excited about that! Winter in Rome, musically speaking, is not memorable and this last one wasn’t an exception. Many new works from California these months, good weather is inspiring apparently.

BECK – Morning Phase (Indie Rock)

We had to wait six long years for a new work and finally we can join! One page is not enough to describe this superb -eclectic- artist, poet, song and music writer. Every little book u can find in his CDs is very well made and it’s worth buying it.  Freewheeling.

MOGWAI – Rave Tapes (Indie Rock, Post Rock)

12th LP for this amazing scottish band! I personally admire who is able to be so creative with instruments only, very difficult (the song i’m posting have words actually). They always are able to make great works (at least for me!). Also in this album you can find mellow songs mixed with more noisy ones and ballads. Visceral.

XIU XIU – Angel Guts: Red Classroom (Experimental Rock, Synth-Pop, Indie Electronic)

Very particular band coming from California formed around 10 years ago. This last work have some more dark influences that, mixed with Jamie Stewart’s (particular) voice, make an interesting combination. Theatrical.

THE NOTWIST – Close To the Glass (Indie Rock, Indie Electronic)

German post-hardcore band originally, they shifted toward electronic influences during their career. Also this work, after 5 years of silence, shows that they have consolidated into electronic. Detached. 

CIBO MATTO – Hotel Valentine (Indie Rock)

How i can describe a japanese band relocated in NYC with an italian name? Well, not easy especially because their style is not easy to define. After their last work, 8 years passed by but the long waiting didn’t affect their talent. Organic.

PLANNINGTOROCK – All Love’s Legal (Indie Electronic)

Interesting work from this extrovert artist (Janine Rostron is also programmer and videographer) coming from UK but musically formed in Berlin. Glam rock mixed with electronic influences. Playful.

WARPAINT – Warpaint (Indie Rock, New Wave)

Not a long career (yet) as the previous artists above, but promising perspectives for this band coming from LA. This self titled work comes after their debut LP in 2010 and is very pleasant (reminding me of Blonde Redhead). Artwork LP is cared by Chris Cunningham. Ethereal.