Warm Leatherette, Grace Jones’ career-shifting 1980 release, gives a glimpse of the artist just as her true genius was coming into sharp focus.
Given all the recent shoegaze reunions—My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive—it makes sense Lush would make a comeback. Rather than simply embark on a nostalgia tour, Lush recorded this 4-song EP.
If the last decade in pop music has taught us anything, it’s that nostalgia can be a double-edged sword. When it goes wrong, it’s about as satisfying as swallowing a mouthful of processed spray cheese. When done right, revisiting the tropes and aesthetics of decades past can go down nicely. M83’s 2011 double album, Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming, fell into the latter camp and—bolstered by its ubiquitous single “Midnight City”—transformed Anthony Gonzalez’s curious 15-year-old project into a soundtrack for Victoria’s Secret commercials and Tom Cruise sci-fi flicks. Surely this shift explains something about the new M83 album, the fascinating and somewhat flummoxing Junk.
Bob Mould is at his best when he’s articulating anger at a high volume. His newest solo album, Patch the Sky, succeeds largely because these furious songs sound as if they're hardwired to raw nerves.
Public Memory is the solo nom de plume of Robert Toher, a Brooklyn-based musician who formerly served time as a member of Eraas and Apse. While those projects blurred the edges of rambling space rock and synthy post-punk, Public Memory dives headlong down the electronic darkwave rabbit hole, exploring a Korg-constructed sonic palette that weaves together a variety of primitive beats, delicately employed samples (bells, chimes, the weeping of ghosts), and woozy electronics that sound as if they might have been recorded at the bottom of a lake. Created over the course of a year while Toher was temporarily decamped in Los Angeles, Wuthering Drum is a work of restrained gloom—a remarkably textured electronic record whose minimalist tendencies keep it from collapsing under the weight of its own moribund aesthetic.