Small Black returns with a more cultivated album that will place listeners into a hazy, synth-pop state, fulfilling the band members' intention of seeking "modern connectivity and interaction."
88.1 KDHX chart position: #2 Electronic for June 25, 2013.
Record Label, release date and producer: The album was released on Jagjaguwar on May 14, 2013 and was produced by Small Black.
RIYL: Millionyoung, a one-man musical act with similar indie/electronic vibes and dream-like qualities as Small Black. Both can be described as part of the "chillwave" movement.
Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Standout tracks: The first track "Free at Dawn" immediately draws listeners to an almost other-worldly calm that drifts into other songs such as "No Stranger" that more clearly represent the album title.
Standout lyrics: "Take me through your barricades / Push me through your city walls / Take me, I can be / Whoever you want / You're no stranger." -- From "No Stranger"
About the band: The group formed when singer and instrumentalist Josh Kolenik came up with the band's name, and stayed by it when he began working with musician Ryan Heyner, later including Juan Pieczanski and Jeff Curtin from a previous band of Kolenik's.
Did you know?: The members began recording in Kolenik's uncle's attic, which was right above his uncle's surfboard shop.
About the album art: The cover shows a man and woman, naked, embracing on either side of a ladder while danger, in the form of an alligator, lurks below them. The photo was shot by Scarlett Hooft Graafland, a Dutch artist. The cover captures the album's sense of desire but also an inability to fully grasp desire and the fears that surround it.
Play it while: Grooving alone when you have a little time to glide into the reverie-like trance of the melodies.
What the critics say: "With the album's 10 tracks, the foursome find their emotional treasure, only at the cost of their more alluring production components." -- Chris Coplan, Consequence of Sound
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