maarja nut & rum "Muunduja (FatCat)"
I was having trouble finding the words to describe the haunting new LP from maarja nuut & ruum. Then I found this quote from The Quietus on the bandcamp page for Muuunduja (FatCat):
“There’s a touristy pub in Tallinn centre called Hell Hunt that boasts a painting above the door showing a naked girl, eyes shut and smiling, riding on the back of a grinning wolf. That’s what her music sounds like.”
Then I didn’t feel too bad, because I’m pretty sure that quote means they didn’t know how to describe it either. They could have just said “Estonian Bjork” but that’s kind of reductive (which is why I’m not actually saying it.) Haunting, ethereal swirls of backing tracks building up around maarja’s angelic vocals (all in Estonian). Check out the mountainous builds of “Haned kadunud.”
TTNG "Animals Acoustic (Sargent House)"
You like TTNG, right (FKA This Town Needs Guns)? You like their classic album Animals, right? You like acoustic versions of songs you already like, right? Then you are gonna LOVE this acoustic reworking of Animals, Animals Acoustic (Sargent House). All your math rock-y favorites are here. Gibbon, Dog, Elk… Check out the spry, crisp sound of “Baboon.”
Black Joe Lewis & Honeybears "The Difference Between Me & You"
For their 5th album, Black Joe Lewis & Honeybears did what may seem impossible for 2018. They made The Difference Between Me & You an authentic, honest to goodness blues album. I mean, if ever there was a time for the blues to come back, now would be it, eh? If that doesn’t whet your appetite, check out this quote from Glide Magazine “a deep repertoire of sounds: the heavy grooves of Albert King, punked-up blues of R.L. Burnside, the storytelling of Bobby “Blue” Bland, and the soulfully layered horns of The Rolling Stones.” Check out the horn-heavy “Culture Vulture.”
Swearin' "Fall Into The Sun (Merge)"
For those keeping score at home Swearin’, is Allison Crutchfield’s band with Kyle Gilbride and Jeff Bolt, and It’s the first new album from Swearin’ since 2013’s Surfing Strange and their first new music since their 2015 breakup. Late last year, the band announced they’d reunited to tour with Superchunk. Also last year, Crutchfield released a debut solo album, Tourist in This Town, and toured as a member of sister Katie Crutchfield’s Waxahatchee). WOW! Got that? So let us get to “Fall Into The Sun” – you like 90’s indie rock? You like The Breeders and Elastica and breathing air? Well, you are gonna love Swearin’. Crank up “Grow Into A Ghost.”