Car Seat's "Teens of Denial" was my favorite album of 2016. It was touching, intelligent, socially aware, musically dynamic- basically brilliant. "Twin Fantasy" doesn't reach the same pinnacle, though there are some glints of greatness within the sprawling, sometimes unfocused, re-engineering of a past CSH recording. This makes sense since TF was released 5 years prior to Denial. In those 5 years Will Toledo has shown tremendous growth as a songwriter. While he still utilizes spoken phrases they are now not as prevalent as in the past and they fit better within his songs which I felt made TF slog or sound preachy at times. His use of soft to loud and deliberate noise is also currently more fluid. This is not an awful release, there are songs and parts of his songs that show the path to where he ended up on Denial. It's just not first or the second I'll reach for when needing a CSH fix. I'm looking forward to the next true actual release of new material to see if CSH continues their positive evolution.
Posted by KB on 4/27/2018
Favorite Songs: Bodys, Cute Thing, High to Death (up til 1:24 left in song)
Find It: Car Seat Headrest- Twin Fantasy
More Info: Car Seat Headrest
I'm coming late to the Ty Segall party having not been on board with his version of freak out rock until his last self titled release in 2017 and "Fuzz II". But this generation's Robert Pollard (don't believe me, just look up his discography) has just released his most accessible and melodic album to date- without losing his indie rock integrity. The songs on "Freedom's Goblin" vary from straight up rockers to blues to funk to ballads and nary a one sounds like another. Which is saying something since there are 19 tracks on FG. There is nothing formulaic about his writing. Each song sounds like they just spring up in his head and he spits them out in one take. They are properly loose but not meandering. Some songs crescendo, some do 180s and some stay the course. "Freedom's Goblin" is one of my favorites so far in 2018 and it could be the entrance ramp for a whole new set of ears.
Posted by KB on 4/18/2018
Favorite Songs: Fanny Dog, Every 1's a Winner, Shoot You Up, She, My Lady's On Fire, And Goodnight
Find It: Ty Segall- Freedom's Goblin
More Info: Ty Segall
The Decemberists are an ever evolving group. They began as intellectual story tellers making their albums basically novels. On "The King Is Dead" they opted to put out songs- not necessarily a cogent concept. It worked and has allowed them to continue their growth. "I'll Be Your Girl" is their most pop (dare I say dance?) album with more electronics and beats but they retain the Decemberist's intelligence (last time you heard the word 'petard' in a song was..), creative song structure and interesting instrumentation that is expected. Rarely do bands mutate, while maintaining a signature sound and continue to be excellent, and arguably better. Currently one of the best releases of the year and the vinyl is stellar.
Posted by KB on 4/11/2018
Favorite Songs: Once in My Life, Starwatcher, Everything Is Awful, We All Die Young
Find It: The Decemberists- I'll Be Your Girl
More Info: The Decemberists