Jäh Division "Dub Will Tear Us Apart… Again (EJRC)"
If you listened to music in 2004, then chances are you listened to Jäh Division’s Dub Will Tear Us Apart. The project, made up of members of Animal Collective, Oneida, and other then-burgeoning Brooklyn scene players, was a simple, funny to read about concept. Jäh Division plays dub versions of Joy Division songs (nearly 10 years before The Pizza Underground did their concept thing, thank you very much). Well here it is nearly 15 years later (shudder) and Ernest Jenning Record Co. is reissuing that original EP, but expanded to include a few more left off of the original EP and some songs from a scrapped album. Unlike a lot of other gimmick bands like this, they were actually great players, and more than the sum of their name and their blog-friendly story. In fact, you needn’t know anything about the story to love this dubbed up release. Check out “Dub Will Tear Us Apart.”
Bruno Bavota "Re_Cordis (Temporary Residence)"
As the line between modern classical composers and electronic musicians blurs more and more with every passing year, in steps Italian composer Bruno Bavota. Bruno is known for, essentially, remixing his compositions live as he performs them. Sitting at a piano with a series of effect pedals, playing his pieces live as he then also manipulates those pieces live. If someone were animating this process, surely Bruno would be an octopus, tentacles everywhere (maybe an amazingly delicious sandwich next to him. After all, cartoon food ALWAYS looks amazing, right?) On Re_Cordis (Temporary Residence), Bruno oscillates between beautiful, calming, solo piano pieces that have very little in the way of manipulation–and haunting, tension-filled combinations of deliberate melody and frayed effects. Here he is revisiting older compositions to show how they have evolved since he originally wrote them. It’s like the dawning of a new kind of new-age music, and I for one am ready for it! You will be too! Check out simply lovely “The light of.”
Juliana Hatfield "Weird (American Laundromat)"
Few things are as enticing as a new collection of songs from power-pop master Juliana Hatfield. Weird (American Laundromat), her latest, is a jangly, catchy, wryly funny reminder of why you love rock music so much. Hints of everything good about rock music here, from the Crazy Horse noodling that ends “Staying In” to the new wave synth hits of “Sugar” to the chunky Cheap Trick chords of “Paid To Lie.” There is very little to say about the many talents of Juliana that hasn’t already been said far more eloquently than I’m capable–so I’m gonna cheat and let her music do the talking. Check out the video for ”Lost Ship.”
Lost Under Heaven "Love Hates What You Become (Mute)"
Few bands are as instantly recognizable as Lost Under Heaven. If you’ve heard them even for a passing moment, you will instantly recognize them as soon as you hear them from that moment on. This has a lot to do with Ellery James Roberts’ distinctive vocal stylings, but also the duo’s mix of goth rock and modern electronic music makes them as future-leaning as anything you’ll ever hear. Describing their sound is like trying to describe the feeling of riding a roller coaster to someone that has never even seen one. On Love Hates What You Become (Mute), besides Ellery’s screaming whisper, they’ve also added more vocals from Ebony Hoorn, the other half of the band. It is always a very welcome addition to the sound, as is evidenced by the Hole meets NIN meets LUH sounds of “Bunny’s Blues.”