We got a lot this week in studio A, and a lot of good stuff at that. For starters, we have the new album from Icelandic art-pop queen Björk. The whole album is based on the break-up of Björk and her longtime partner, and as such features some brutally honest songwriting. The instrumentation is really beautiful on this as well.

In addition to that we have the debut EP from Sunflower Bean. If you missed these guys when they came to UConn, you definitely messed up. Every song on this EP is fantastic, with some great dreamy, noodly guitar riffs and reverb-drenched vocals paired with some wicked cool fuzzed out riffs here and there. This thing rips front to back.

-Dan

**= push *= recommend

ARTIST                              ALBUM                             DESCRIPTION                                                            LABEL

Bjork** Vulnicura Incredible, raw pop/experimental pop from brilliant Icelandic star Bjork. Lyrics are brutally honest psychological depictions of Bjorks mental state after break-up with longtime partner. Instrumentals are largely string and electronics based. Shockingly bare, beautiful and painful. Plat 1,2,5,6,8,9. FCC 3. One Little Indian
Sunflower Bean** Show Me Your Seven Secrets Man oh man does thie EP rip. Every song is great. Definitely a lot of psych-rock/dream-pop goodness going on but they are not afraid to riff real heard. Really great female vox and occasional male accompaniment. RIYL: Tame Impala. Try every song! Self-released
Yumi Zouma* EP I And EP II “Dream-disco”. Stellar, bright, shimmering synth-pop. Feels summery and fun for the most part, in the way of jumping into a pool at sunset. Overall, just brilliant pop music. RIYL: Tops, Washed Out. Play 1,3,5,6,7. FCC clean. Cascine
Adventures* Supersonic Home 90s alt rock with that classic Run For Cover emo-touch. Great, solid guitar-based instrumentals with odd, spirited vocals. Tiny, tiny bits of shoegaze. Vox are odd in the wat that they’re so plain? But alluring. RIYL: Run For Cover bands. FCC clean. Run For Cover
The Dodos* Individ Awesome indie rock record with great guitar and drum work. Very energetic melodies and super catchy to boot. Highly recommended to any fan of the “indie rocks”. Play 4,3,2,7. FCC clean. Polyvinyl
Warehouse* Tesseract Awesome, jangly indie rock with brutally scratchy and strained vocals. Instrumentals are lo-fi and sometimes sound out of tune. Really emphasizes the speed of the record. RIYL: Beach Fossils, Screaming Females, Cloud Nothings. Play 2,3,4,6,8. FCC clean. Self-released
Matthew E. White* Fresh Blood 70s sounding Americana soul. A large production from his Virginian spacebomb house band full with horns, strings, and backup singers. Smooth, southern, slightly gospel. RIYL: Randy Newman. Try 4 and 10. Domino
Wolf Colony* Unmasked Downtempo “dark pop”, male vocals. Sparse but lush productions keeps focus on deep soulful vocals, equal parts melancholy and uplifting. Great songwriting on this, a good handful of memorable tunes! FCC clean. Try 1,2,5,4,7,10. Self-released
Lady Lamb and The Beekeeper* After Jangly, folk-influenced indie rock with bright, vivacious vocals. Fair share of slow-burners and blasts of energy. Really great songs, Trevor backs this. Great variety. Play 1,2,3,4,6,8,7. RIYL: Hop Along, Waxahatchee. FCC clean. Self-released
Blind Moon* Blind Moon Reverb/echo-drenched bedroom pop with nice production. At times mellow and whispered, at others fuzzy and moany. Try 4,1,7. RIYL: Deerhunter, The Clientelle Feeltrip Records
Paul Cherry* On Top Warbly, wonky, melodic “mod-pop”. Lots of chorus effect on the guitar parts. Retro analog sounding rock n roll with some slow burners. RIYL: Mac DeMarco, Ariel Pink. Play 1,2,3,6. Feeltrip Records
Ryley Walker* Primrose Green Andy McNee meets acoustic Led Zeppelin meets Ben Howard. Pure acoustic with some electric riffs. Smooth vocals with an edge at times. FCC clean. Try 1,2,4. Dead Oceans
Of Montreal* Aureate Gloom Has a great sound. Similar to 60s music and original. Has great lyrics and versatility. Title track is great. Polyvinyl
Humans* Moontide Pop/indie intros, but really deviates into darker and noisier electronic music. Transition is interesting, dynamic sounds come in and out to keep listener involved. Tray 1,3. FCC clean. Hybridity
lowercase letters imnop music Souldful, smooth vocals, varying distorted guitar riffs, synth mixed with drums. FCC 2. House
Keath Mead* Sunday Dinner Easy to listen to folky, poppy rock. Laid back and slightly unique vocals make this a decent album. Rec 10,2. Company records
Shana Falana Set Your Lightning Fire Free Definitely not bad, but certainly not unique. A lot of recycled sounds on here, draws really heavily from Cocteau Twins. Track 1 has a cool synth part. Overall, very stale sounding, their sound was done better by their predecessors. Try 1,4,5. RIYL: Cocteau Twins. FCC clean. Team Love
Stage Hands Stage Hands Downtempo experimental electronica, instrumental except #5. Chill, drifting tunes with layered acoustic and electronic elements, some IDM influences. Some good ideas, nothing spectacular but a good background listen. Try 1,3,4. FCC clean. Self-released
Young Guv Ripe 4 Luv 80s sounding new wave and pop rock. High falsetto vocals, but some alright melodies and solos. Play 1,4,5. Slumberland
Will Butler Policy Not exactly what I expected. Kinda all over the place. Some songs sound like garage rock a la the Violent Femmes. Others just sound like bad Arcade Fire outtakes that didn’t quite make one of their earlier albums. Billed as “American rock” and some songs definitely give off a Dylan/The Band vibe. RIYL: Arcade Fire, The Band, Violent Femmes. Merge
Mother Mother Very Good Bad Thing Has potential but I think they could work on their lyrics. There is a lot of synth which I liked and male/female vocals. Def Jam
Tuxedo Tuxedo Very funky but all tracks sound the same. They have a good use of instruments (brass) but need to have more diverse sound between songs. Stones Throw
Summer Cannibals Show Us Your Mind Awesome female vocals, good beat, drums, instrumental. FCC clean. Listen to 3,4,5,6. New Moss
The Gift Machine Hard Facts Are Still Uncertain Great 60s psychedelic sound. Starts off strong then gets tranquile. Nice sound. Try 1,5,9. FCC clean. Gift Machine
PTA Trust No Man “Butts” is right. Some reverby pop-punk you’ve definitely heard before. Really wants to sound like Wavves. Feeltrip Records
In The Whale Nate & Eric Typical punk rock, distorted guitar, screaming vocals, heavy drums, some catchy songs. Try 6! Self-released
Little Helen Rose Live at the Monkey Room Says she’s similar to Alabama Shakes but she’s not. Heavy on the sax and angsty vocals w/ bluesy undertones. Self-released
San Juan Horizons Fairly boring, guitar-heavy and laid-back album. Very clean, over-produced sound. RIYL John Mayer. Self-released
Eternal Death Eternal Death Misnomer, what sounds like a metal band is cute synth-pop. Very Chvrches or P. Ring. Too homogeneous and simple. Synths become draining half way through. Try 4. RIYL: High pitched synth pop. Labrador Records
Tom Brousseau Perfect Abandon Acoustic folk singer-songwriter with a very old-fashioned approach to song-writing. Majority= vocals, guitar and light drumming. Great storytelling. Toughes of blues. Seems like the nicest dude. Play 2,5,7,8,9. FCC clean. Crossbill
The Black Ryder The Door Behind The Door Long tracks of kaleidoscopid shoegaze/dream pop/rock. Wisps of female vocals echo through expansive soundscapes of dreamy feedback and acoustic guitar. Very enjoyable. Play 2,4,7,8. FCC clean. The Anti-Machine Machine
The Pop Group Citizen Zombie First album from this band in 35 years! What?? Really really strange. Popst punk with dance punk, synth pop flair. A lot more accessible than their previous stuff. This is the shit college radio was built on! FCC 8 Freaks R Us
The Fraidies Try Again Poppy-rock, it’s not bad but I lost interest fast. Self-released
Various Artists Luxembourg Sounds Like… Various genres, a neat little sample of music from the tiny country of Luxembourg. All english lyrics, some pretty good tunes here! Very radio friendly, a little something for everyone! Try 1,3,5,6,9,10. FCC clean. Music: LX
Hippo Campus Bashful Creatures Jangly, beachy indie-pop, male vox, clean production, full sound with lush guitars. Catchy upbeat tunes, but overall pretty run-of-the-mill. FCC 2,6. Try 1,3,4. Thirty Tigers

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