Zammuto "We The Animals Soundtrack (Temporary Residence)"
Nick Zammuto (formerly of Books, currently of being a solo artist) was asked to write the score to Jerimiah Zagar’s gorgeous and heartbreaking film We The Animals. He, of course, obliged in with aplomb. Beautiful and haunting just like the film, Nick uses scarce instrumentation (mostly electronics and synths) combined with clips of dialogue and natural sounds to make the soundtrack here it’s own singular achievement. Check out the ethereal “Fly Away.”
BRUTUS "Nest (Sargent House)"
Nest (Sargent House) is the latest release from Belgium trio Brutus. Mixing post-rock, metal, hardcore, and math rock all while vocalist/drummer Stefanie belts out “out the most impassioned vocals, shifting from deceptively melodic to out-right larynx-punishing in the blink of an eye.“ So says Sargent House’s PR, and so do I agree. Imagine a more pop-leaning MONO as led by a Sugarcubes-era Björk (when they lean pop) and… well, when Stefanie is really belting it out she sounds like no other voice in rock music. Moody, atmospheric one moment and nearly thrash metal the next moment. This is a stunner of an album, as is evidenced by the operatic changes of the single “War.”
K Á R Y Y N "The Quanta Series (Mute)"
The Quanta Series, K Á R Y Y N’s debut on Mute Records, was 7 years in the making. Following some family sadness, she retreated to upstate NY and began the process of healing through her music. The result is a beguiling, experimental batch of tunes that were released as pairs of singles over the last few years and are now collected as one monumental piece of art. Modern, otherworldly, haunting, emotive, and generally beautiful-this is truly a moving group of tunes. Give a listen to the FKA Twigs-ish “BINARY (1).”
Laura Stevenson "The Big Freeze (Don Giovanni)"
Just surviving February in NYC as it rolls into March (Marchuary), and it snows and snows and it is gray and it is gray, and it is cold, so cold and yes I’m complaining but the upside is records like The Big Freeze by Laura Stevenson. Like Joni Mitchell’s heating blanket by a fire at Sharon Van Etten’s ski lodge is what helps keep the outside world at bay during “Living Room, NYC”. But hey, don’t worry, Laura can still bring out some almost summer-like vibes for “Dermatillomania” (it will get warm again? this year??). Even though Laura has been around for a minute with The Big Freeze Laura will be the next singer-songwriter everyone is talking about. Warm up with “Value Inn.”