Reviews I've been meaning to get to for a while now...
The Strange Boys
and Girls Club
(03.2009, In The Red Records)
RIYL: Summer, All the lo-fi buzz, simple pop drumming, throwbacks
The Strange Boys are twin Texans plus two playing ultra catchy fuzzed out psychedelic rock pop. This quad will get a tune stuck in your head as quick as any teen oriented radio station after one listen. Guitar that is somehow blues and surf at the same time flush out the melody as the sometimes Dylan inspired vocals are more or less shouted over the top. I wouldn't call it beautiful or charming, but I would call it fun for the whole family. You can get some serious dance parties on to this album, or get your lazy chill on, or employ it to accompany you around the house as you do chores, as it is very versatile and good for a variety of uses. Overall it is a enjoyable album. Nothing to pee your pants over, but definitely a good summer jammer.
Blood From A Stone
Verdict: Regina Spektor from Norway backed by a drunken Radiohead cover band playing on Mars
Weirdo Hanne Hukkelberg got a whole lot less weird this year with her release of Blood From A Stone. All the quirky noisemakers have been more or less boiled out from production leaving behind rather enjoyable but straightforward pop songs. I was disappointed on first listen, but have since gained more appreciation for what this album offers, which is reserved and playful melodies orchestrated beautifully over which Hanne's delightful voice shines brighter than ever before. Slight hints of electronica are still present as is the wintry cold seriousness. Hanne kisses everything with a hint of her Scandanavianess and leaves everything pristine organic and sweetly arranged. Blood from a Stone is less dynamic than the earlier Hanne that I once fell in love with and it slightly broke my heart, but we're still seeing each other.
Monster Head Room
Saving the best for last in true socialite style, current super under the radar but busting out with a vengeance Indie scene heartthrobs Ganglians are currently rocking my world. These little crooners know how to chamber pop the summer sun into oblivion. Harmonies galore and sun worshipping scorchers are nonstop on this album. Every song is irresistibly foot tappingly good. It's laid back simple acid surf at it's absolute finest. I can't get enough of the Ganglians. I totally have a crush on Monster Head Room and you should too!