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"Psychedelic dream pop" may not be the first thing you think of when you think of Brazilian music, and yet the duo of Lucas Moura and Felipe Augusto, aka Glue Trip, take the tropics on a strange, wonderful trip on the track "Old Blood."

For its new album the Oklahoma City band Skating Polly decided to work with lo-fi experimental king Calvin Johnson, and the results, as heard on the track "Alabama Movies," prove that art punk really can be made riotously fuzzy and scuzzy again.

Crafty and intricate, the music of Forsthays has undeniable echoes of Frank Ocean while still venturing into wholly new, wholly eclectic electro-R&B vistas. Case in point: the new track "Better Off Now."

Friday, 28 February 2014 09:21

Song of the Day: 'Beasts' by the River Monks

Des Moines, Iowa band the River Monks take folk foundations -- banjo, guitar and close harmonies -- and then build and build from there, creating a mysterious, almost psychedelic sound on the new track "Beasts."

When you decide to take on a cover of Tears for Fears' best-known song, you'd better have a concept, and that concept best not be tongue in cheek. Vancouver band Bear Mountain somehow manages to put its own playful, experimental stamp on "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" while still paying homage to the sing-along catchiness that made the song such a pleasure to begin with.

"Strugglin'" by I Am the Albatross is more than just another lo-fi foray into gothic country. The Austin-based trio has sure-footed, bluesy musicality and a great Leonard Cohen quote to get you brooding along.

On "The Weight of It All," call-and-response vocals and a surging, guitar-lit chorus enrich the piano-based confessions of Newfoundland-born, Halifax, Canada-based singer-songwriter Kim Harris.

For his new album "Draws Blood," Cape Breton, Canada songwriter Carleton Stone enlisted Howie Beck (Feist) and Jason Collett (Broken Social Scene) to assist in producing, but the tense, prickly tone of "Climbing up the Walls" is still very much his own.

The tones and textures of 'Garden,' a new song by Owls of the Swamp (aka Australian songwriter Pete Uhlenbruch), seem to disappear like breath off a fresh razor. But somehow the tranquility of the track lingers long after it's gone.

Monday, 10 March 2014 06:20

Song of the Day: 'The Stars' by Cajita

Cajita started out as the one-man band of Jay Chakravorty, though recently the project has taken on a broader but still achingly intimate quality. One listen to "The Stars" is enough to succumb to the sound.

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