In this column, I’ll be discussing (as will Jagan and Aidan will be in future posts) albums/EPs/singles that I thought were noteworthy but we didn’t get a chance to discuss in our show. Since we all love music, there is always plenty of new stuff coming out. Some of it goes under the radar while others get critical acclaim. I’ll be doing a mixture of both as this is just highlighting releases I really enjoyed. For the column, I’ll always be writing a short paragraph on 5 albums we didn’t talk about in the month (with one honorable mention today) and then a small list will follow with albums I still think were great, but just not enough to write about. Without further ado, here are my picks for the October month in review.
Julia Holter – Aviary
Julia Holter returns with an ambitious record after her 2015 ‘Have You In My Wilderness’. Now this album was going to be my pick for the upcoming episode but due to conflicting schedules, I have to miss it. I didn’t want to miss my chance talking about this outstanding album, so here it goes. On Aviary, Julia Holter takes art pop in a really progressive shift. Fusing elements of jazz, classical, electronic, and of course, pop. None of it ever feels forced as she blends every single genre extremely well. Fans of Holter’s previous work will enjoy this one, as it feels like a culmination of all her work. At a run time of 1hr 29min, the album can look daunting at first. Long albums always struggle with keeping the listener in, but on Aviary there is never a dull moment. The album is dense, on a first listen it may seem like a lot to take in but the adventure through it is rewarding. Anyone looking for a challenging yet enjoyable art pop album needs to check this out. If this is your introduction to Julia Holter, make sure to go back through her discography. For fans of Bjork, Fiona Apple, Kate Bush, and Joanna Newsom.
Thom Yorke – Suspiria
Thom Yorke is a legendary name. Being in the music scene for almost 30 years, his name is iconic. Here he tries is hand in a film score, as his fellow bandmates in Radiohead have done, and he does it marvellously. Suspiria is a film by Luca Guadagnino which is a remake of the classic 1977 horror film. Film fans alike will know Luca Guadagnino is a music nerd (or at least seems to be) from his soundtrack on his last film, ‘Call Me By Your Name’. Anyone that knows me, knows that I’m almost as into film as I am into music. So it is no surprise that I chose a soundtrack to accompany my favourite releases of the month. Now the original soundtrack was done by Italian band, ‘Goblin’, who are a progressive rock band from the 70’s and the soundtrack they did was hugely influential. Thom takes progressive rock elements from the original and does his own original twist to it, mixing in some krautrock elements. But the soundtrack is not only that, as Thom also takes a more horror approach with dark ambient. Now this is another release clocking in at 1hr 20min, a very dense and lengthy film score but well rewarding again to fully listen. For fans of film scores, Jonny Greenwood, and Ryuichi Sakamoto.
Fucked Up – Dose Your Dreams
Canadian band Fucked Up return with their sequel album to the original ‘David Comes to Life’. Fucked Up are always considered a “hardcore” band just due to the scene they were in but were always so much more. They’re a forward thinking band always trying new ideas and this record isn’t the exception. On Dose Your Dreams, Fucked Up starts off with some classic anthem like hardcore tunes. So someone’s first listen they might be like “Art Punk? Are you sure?” but quickly further into the album they start making some dancey, electronic like songs. Jazz is also present throughout the entire record but some might only say that with a saxophone being included. I decided to continue the trend of lengthy albums as this one also has a run time of 1hr 22min. But like the other two above, the journey throughout this record is worth it and you never really feel bored. People listening to Fucked Up for the first time will get all what they are about through this album. For fans of Refused, Titus Andronicus and Fugazi.
Daughters – You Won’t Get What You Want
Legendary noise rock band, Daughters, returns with their first full length in 8 years. Daughters really brings their A-game with this album. Starting off as a mathcore band in the early 2000’s, the sound Daughters brought to the game quickly evolved into a more noise rock/no wave sound. You Won’t Get What You Want is what some people may call a perfect comeback album, and I’m inclined to agree. The albums run time is 48mins and during that entire time the band doesn’t let you breath or take a break from the intensity. The album is perfect example of taking your influences and raising them to a 100. This album is for fans of early Swans, some Nine Inch Nails, and the Dillinger Escape Plan.
Marie Davidson – Working Class Woman
Marie Davidson is still relatively new to me. She first caught my eye with her previous album ‘Adieux Au Dancefloor’ which I felt was a masterful dance project. She continues that on this release, adding in spoken word parts that have a little irony and comedy to them. The music is a little more poppy in the direction she took so it felt like this record was her “lose yourself to the music” kind of deal. It’s dancey and fun, but at the same time people who are looking for more dark techno should be able to enjoy this. I look forward to hearing more from her in the future, and fans of more “weird” electronic music should be checking her out. If you’re a fan of Laurel Halo, Carla dal Forno or just techno in general, check out this album.
IU – BBIBBI
This release I had to talk about because IU is one of my favourite musicians in the world right now. She has been such a huge inspiration on me as a person on her view of making music for herself and doing it no other way. BBIBBI was released this month, a single, and even though it sounds more like a summer bop, it’s still a great release. IU continues her streak of evolving her sound with every release. BBIBBI doesn’t sound like anything she’s released yet at the same time very recognizably it is IU. Taking inspiration from the more modern R&B sound, IU’s voice goes fits perfectly along the beat and the lyrics to match (I don’t know Korean, so if I’m wrong feel free to correct me) saying “fuck the haters” essentially - which is totally IU, doing what she wants to do because it is what she loves. Not following any trends or conforming to a certain standard. Anyways, this track is wonderful ear worm and if you have any interest in k-pop at all, IU does it best.
Other notable releases this month:
- Mewithoutyou – Untitled (Post-Hardcore)
- Puce Mary – The Drought (Industrial Noise)
- Antarctigo Vespucci – Love in the Time of E-Mail (Power Pop)
- Demdike Stare – Passion (Deconstructed Club)
- Street Sects – The Kicking Mule (Industrial Punk)
- Hissing – Permanent Destitution (Dissonant Death Metal)
- Carpe Noctem – Vitrun (Dissonant Black Metal)
- Cloud Nothings – Last Building Burning (Post-Hardcore)
- Super Unison – Stella (Hardcore)
- Ichiko Aoba – qp (Folk)
- Robyn – Honey (Synthpop)
- Clarence Clarity – THINK: PEACE (Art Pop)