Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Best of 2011: Kavinsky - "Nightcall"

Drive was a divisive film, but just about everyone found something to like on the soundtrack. Perfect mixes of 80's nostalgia and modern day electronica are what most of the songs consist of, the strongest of which is "Nightcall". Spooky synthesizers driven by a slow, plodding beat set the scene for a conversation between a man and a woman and their uncertain, mysterious relationship. After you've really listened you realize "Nightcall" is a Drive microcosm.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Best of 2011: Real Estate - "It's Real"

Many of Real Estate's strongest moments are in their long instrumental interludes, when they allow their easy melodies to breathe and flow. But I can't help but feel the best track on Days is "It's Real", the most economic and radio-friendly song of the bunch. It maintains all of Real Estate's characteristics while adding increased accessibility. Though Days', an open and immediate record, wouldn't require one, "It's Real" turns out to be the groups' perfect single.

Best Tracks of 2011 Main Page

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Stills - Oceans Will Rise


Everything I Build

After Logic Will Break Your Heart The Stills switched gears with their next record. From what I remember Without Feathers was an homage to 70’s style arena rock, and I didn’t care for it much. The Stills latest record, Oceans Will Rise is a mix of both styles. Somewhat successful attempts at arena rock singles can be heard in “Being Here”, “I’m With You” and “Don’t Talk Down”; “Snakecharming the Masses” and “Everything I Build” bring Radiohead to mind; then there’s songs like “Snow in California” and “Hands on Fire” that follow The Stills founding blueprint. Some enjoyable songs here for heavy consumers of indie rock but surely nothing essential.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Stills - Logic Will Break Your Heart


Changes Are No Good
Let’s Roll

The Stills first record sounds like The Strokes on an emo kick. Coincidentally I bought Logic WIll Break Your Heart during the same trip to the record store I bought Room on Fire, and I enjoyed the hell out of both of them some eight years ago. But while the second Strokes record has aged exceptionally well, the first Stills record has gone stale. Tim Fletcher sounds like he’s trying too hard. He writes gloomy, introspective lyrics; his defected, injured croon conjuring all your 80’s indie favorites (Morrissey, Robert Smith, Bernard Sumner) -- it’s hard to tell whether he takes himself too seriously or if he's on the conquest for groupies. Probably both. Just about anyone would hope being in a band would increase their chances of getting laid, but that should come naturally, I don't want to hear it in the music. Getting past Fletcher’s shortcomings will net you a few solid tracks though, my favorites being the depressing yet danceable “Changes Are No Good”, and the escapist “Let’s Roll”.