Music Reviews: new tunes for summer

Sam Smith
The Thrill of It
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Sam Smiths latest album rings true to his previous works in the fashion of relationships, breakups, grief and love. Another breakup album that gives you the mood of a challenging relationship moment. Unlike last time though I find the songs here far more upbeat and hopeful. Whilst riddled with self-doubt and melancholic chords the general nature of the album is prosperity and moving up after crisis. The mourning of feeling like you’re alone in the world, cut off from friends and having to look deep within oneself to grow a stronger sense of identity that forms the more whole person you become as a result of the tragedy that seemingly befalls each of us post-relationship. Sam Smith shows us in our loneliness we find the very inner self-love that ignited the passion in our next lover. – Kyle J Kash

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

LA rockers Starcrawler tapped Ryan Adams to record their thumping and racious debut album, but this is no alt-country outing. Opening up with a four-to-the-floor beat Train gets things rolling and the guitars just get louder with each progressing track.

The songs are short and sweet, ten tracks are over in just 26 minutes, and while it’s 100 per cent in the rock genre, it maintains a catchy pop sensibility. Standout tracks are I Love L.A, Pussy Tower, and Full of Pride (which sounds like a ‘90s indie anthem). – Graeme Watson

Fresh Tracks

download these for your listening pleasure

Strange Names – Into Me delightful jangle pop from NYC trio Sam Binga and Rider Shafique – Pot Ah Bubble an intriguing mix of reggae, hip hop and bubbling electonica Abbe May – Love Decline we just love a song that mentions a powder blue Mercedes Ruby Boots – It’s So Cool  a surprisingly upbeat rock track from the local artist, sounds like it should have been on Classic Countdown Prins Thomas – Aske Hermansen uplifting bleeps and blips that closes his new album Daryl Braithwaite  – If You Leave Me Now The former lead singer of Sherbet covers one of Chicago’s biggest hits, we’re just suckers for this tune Tears for Fears – Head of Heels (Talamanca System Tribal Persuation Remix) ’cause Tears for Fears were crying out for a tropical house treatment Murcof and Vanessa Wagner – Avril 14th (Loscil Remix) it’s the second time this year this Aphex Twin tune has been covered, haunting and beautiful Culture Club – The War Song (live) Culture Clubs brilliant rework of one of their naffest songs is a total party Starcrawler – I Love L.A. rocking tack produced by Ryan Adams Philippe Cohen Solal featuring Horace Andy – Aquarius (Boddhi Satva Ancestral Dub) Horace Andy nuff said  

Wolf and Moon
★ ★ ★ ★ 

This new duo produce some delightful folky dream pop on their debut EP. The opening track Like a Shotgun is not the greatest but the rest of the EP is quality. Wake Up features the sweet sounds of vocalist Stefany June backed by scratchy guitars and slumberish organic sounds, Home to Me picks up the pace and features a nice interplay with band mate Dennis.The closing tune Stones slips back into the dream inducing sound, it almost sounds if they’re being backed by a whale. – Graeme Watson

OIP Staff

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