With free, new tracks from The Rapture and M83, you oughta be set
While this speculation remains unconfirmed, the New York dance band’s sure to sell a bunch of albums this fall. Their fourth LP, “In the Grace of Your Love,” hits stores in September, courtesy of DFA Records.
The nearly 7-minute melodramatic disco banger “How Deep Is Your Love” is the album’s first single, and if it’s any indicator, “Grace” is going to absolutely slay the competition for album of the year.
Here’s why: The Rapture previously operated as a pretty stripped-down, manic, dance-punk band (see: 2003’s excellent “Echoes”) but “Deep” exhibits some aggressive sonic expansion. Included is a more earnest and theatrical lyrical arrangement as well as more nuanced use of keys and synths, where those were mostly used as solo instruments on previous Rapture records.
Somewhere, Justin Vernon’s beard trembles.
Anywho, M83 is another electro band slated for an ambitious fall release (a double-LP, in fact) that just so happens to have put out a terrific single to hype it.
“Midnight City” starts off sounding the way MGMT did on their first record — dancey and psychedelic on an epic scale. I’ve got a feeling that the French electro-poppers will be highly sought-after on next summer’s festival schedule.—Matt Carney
It’s been a slow couple of months for interesting new music from established acts, be they indie or mainstream. Other than Kanye and Jay-Z’s epic collaboration on “Watch the Throne,” we haven’t heard much from the usual suspects.
But that’s not to say times are tough! Plenty of great music is streaming and downloadable right now, both from up-and-coming indie acts and locals. Here are my picks for the week.
Thundercat made himself known to indie audiences when he guested on Flying Lotus’ excellent “Cosmogramma” last year. FlyLo reciprocated by producing his debut LP, “The Golden Age of Apocalypse.” Stream it over at Hype Machine.
Tulsa and Enid have combined to give us Good Morning Grizzly, a pretty, pop-rock project that put this first big track up for download. It’s called “Stars and Satellites,” and you can snag it at the band's Bandcamp page.
Okie Chase Kerby (The City Lives) is getting back into the pop-rock game with Defining Times. Their debut EP was up for free download earlier in the week, but now it’ll set you back $5. I call that money well-spent.
Peter Bjorn and John stopped by KEXP’s studios in Seattle to play a couple of tracks off their latest record, “Gimme Some.” Watch “Breaker, Breaker” (complete with cowbell!) below.
Free music for you from The Rapture, Laura Gibson and a bunch of artists in ol’ Norman-town.
Economy — “Winter Recording Fiasco” I have no idea what Economy is, nor anything more about the “Winter Recording Fiasco” than what the musical collective posted to its Bandcamp page, but judging by that information, it’s the Zanzibar! Records folks exploring their weirdness.
These songs are droning and creepy, pulsing with what sounds like bass keyboard and rhythmic lyrics like “keep the species alive.” They’re also topical enough to title a song after a certain dictator of North Korea, recently deceased.
The Rapture — “Sail Away” remixes While The Rapture’s full-length fell a little more flat than I’d hoped, it had a couple of standout singles, and “Sail Away” was one of them. Cut Copy gives a signature tribal contribution, Aeroplane’s starts out sparse before blowing up into a full-on house rave, and Cosmic Kids win the award for choppiest chop-up. Their spacier, hypnotic take, complete with long-echoing, mixed-up vocals is about as different from the original as you can get. Thanks, DFA Records!
Laura Gibson — “La Grande” Plaintive, pretty singer/songwriter Laura Gibson visits Opolis in February with Breathe Owl Breathe. Take this opportunity from NPR to get to know her.
What immediately grabbed me about this song was the cheesy, Grandma-giving-the-thumbs-up art, which initially triggered what I call a “whack-novelty” reaction deep within my brain. Then the track kicked in and I got all excited for his forthcoming album, “Probably Flaws.” Dude’s got skill, and it’s fun listening to him dance around the melody on the “Birthday Sex” sample. As solid a local hip-hop track as I've heard in a while.