New & featured releases, updated May 31, 2018

The Spook School "Could It Be Different?"

[LP » $14.00] [CD » $9.00] [more info]
Could It Be Different?

The Spook School Could It Be Different? LP/CD

Glasgow's The Spook School are like indiepop super heroes, conjuring up some of the most infectious pop tunes we've heard in years, rocking crowds around the world, smashing at the gender binary while grappling with obstacles personal and political -- and having a marvelous time while doing it. Could It Be Different?, the band's third long-player, is a collaborative album of personal storytelling that works through life's hardships with positivity — even at their most beaten down, The Spook School manage to find hope, free of naivety. It's a record full of the insecurities and anxiety that arrive after self-awareness, in learning something new and potentially frightening about yourself. But at it's heart is joy — there's no desolation on the LP, because The Spook School manage to find light in moments of darkness. Why cry when you can dance?


Frankie Rose "Cage Tropical"

[LP » $16.00] [CD » $9.00] [more info]
Cage Tropical

Frankie Rose Cage Tropical LP/CD

After 2013's "Hereinwild" Frankie Rose relocated to Los Angeles for what turned out to be a journey of frustration, setbacks and ultimately artistic rejuvenation as Frankie moved back to Brooklyn and hit the studio with renewed vigor and purpose. The result of this existential odyssey is Cage Tropical, Frankie’s 4th album. It is awash with vintage synths, painterly effects pedals, upside-down atmosphere and reverberating vocals. It evokes a new wave paranormality of sorts that drifts beyond the songs themselves. From with the shimmery, cinematic and percussive sparkling of the album’s opening track "Love in Rockets" to the motorik groove of first single "Trouble" to the epic closer "Decontrol," Cage Tropical is a bold and beautiful statement of purpose from an artist who is once again 100% in control of her music. Mysterious but focused, it is personal redemption turned into fine art.


Young Guv "Traumatic"

[7" » $6.50] [more info]
Traumatic

Young Guv Traumatic 7"

After a rather twisted 2016 of travel, change and discovery, Young Guv is back with this new single "Traumatic." Recorded at home on trusty 1/4" analog tape, it's a self-reflective and personal audio snapshot that contrasts nicely with the loud 'n' gritty Ripe 4 Luv. "Traumatic" rides a bubbling programmed groove, blending echo-laden vocals with understated rhythm guitar and a catchy synth hook into a magical new wave roots-pop amalgam. "It Could Be Me" is a classic major chord confection, hearkening back to that cusp-of-the-80s genius of Shoes, Dwight Twilley and Phil Seymour. As always the songs are stuffed with lovely harmonies and heart-stopping melodies, never losing site of power-pop's roots in Buddy Holly, The Beatles and Big Star.


The Proper Ornaments "Foxhole"

[LP » $14.00] [CD » $9.00] [more info]
Foxhole

The Proper Ornaments Foxhole LP/CD

Proper Ornaments is the project of James Hoare (Ultimate Painting, Veronica Falls) and Max Oscarnold (Toy, Pink Flames). Their chance meeting blossomed into an epicurean riot of luminous highs and cold, dismal crashes that conversely produced music that was very well ordered and faintly angelic. While 2014's "Wooden Head" was fuzzy and driving, on "Foxhole" they've sliced away a whole stratum of their sound, removing some distortion and lowering the frequency of plectrum strokes to allow more nuanced, piano-led ideas to emerge. The mood is dreamlike and pastoral, poetic and warmly expressive. Reference points of Velvet Underground and The Jesus & Mary Chain only tell part of the story - there is a cracked, wasted depth to "Foxhole" that draws you deep into the album's soundworld. Crucial.


Tony Molina "Confront The Truth"

[7" » $6.50] [more info]
Confront The Truth

Tony Molina Confront The Truth 7"

We've all been waiting WAY too long for a new Tony Molina record, and this here eight song EP delivers in spades. Leaving the guitar crunch behind, Tony spotlights his formidable songwriting with spare, mostly acoustic arrangements that owe as much to early Bee Gees and Teenage Fanclub's mellower moments as they do to Georges Harrison and Martin. The sadness of this music has precedents in pop's past indeed, but in these songs you hear exactly what Tony found in those influences that shaped his experience -- years upon years of focus and isolation in developing his guitar and writing skills to speak to these truths. The main difference here is that where Tony's previous works felt casual and easy to digest, here we feel the full weight of his emotional needs pressed against the gentlest and most careful music of his career. The record's coda, a highlight reel of Thin Lizzy's "Banshee," indicates that the Tony you knew is still in there, but the game has changed, and the rules are entirely his own. Tony Molina is in complete control of his own destiny, and we should all care about where he's going.


Tony Molina "Dissed And Dismissed"

[LP » $12.00] [CD » $6.00] [more info]
Dissed And Dismissed

Tony Molina Dissed And Dismissed LP/CD

Breathless, lightning-quick power-pop songs that feature some of the best tunes we've heard in ages. Taking his cues from Thin Lizzy, Teenage Fanclub, Big Star, Dinosaur Jr and Guided By Voices, Tony has an unerring grasp on what makes great pop work, and these twelve songs (including an ace GBV cover) could all be lost 70s radio hits, albeit ones filtered through a love of punk and hardcore. Brevity is the name of the game here - most songs run under one minute and yet don't skimp at all on melody or self-deprecating humor. Awesome.


 

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