Late last week Kill Surf City (aka Grey Gordon) released a surprise new single called “Weird World”. The first new material from the lo-fi indie act since his phenomenal EP “Wreckage”, “Weird World” is a catchy new track with stellar lyricism. Using an upbeat, cymbal riding drum beat with an instantly memorable guitar riff in each verse that is reminiscent of early 2000s and even late 90’s alternative punk, “Weird World” is the great evolution of Kill Surf City’s sound, and it is, without a doubt, the “Track of the Day Tuesday”.
Starting off with a hazy acoustic guitar strumming a constant chord and the iconic, reverb filled vocals of Gordon himself, the track can easily be determined as one of the best releases by KSC. Listening through the short track I was pleasantly surprised to hear multiple solos with a dream pop, almost shoegaze-esque, guitar tone that was present in both the verse and the chorus. This perfectly complimented, not only the choruses that sounded reminiscent of something you would hear on “Hyperview”, but also the song structure of modern KSC songs themselves, and I hope it is something that is mixed into more Kill Surf City songs in the future. It’s hard to say if this is my favorite project from Kill Surf City, as I absolutely love “Wreckage” and really enjoy “Split Yr Head”, but I guarantee this new track makes a strong argument as to why it deserves to be considered one of the act’s best releases. Overall, if I was to give this single a rating, I would give it a 9.7/10 and it is easily one of my favorite new releases of the year so far!
Like usual, you can stream the track below. Don’t forget to check out the rest of KSC’s short discography, and while you’re at it, give “Wreckage a listen here. Let us know what you think of “Weird World”, the track you absolutely need to give a listen to today, and send us any tracks you think should be on next week’s “Track of the Day Tuesday”
Beach House has been making the same album over and over since 2006, and each time they get a bit better at it. “Bloom” is the third iteration of their self-titled record. Immediately recognizable from the first moments of “Myth” is the group’s signature melancholia. They do a fantastic job of creating an immersive atmosphere, one that is enjoyable and easy to get lost in. However, there isn’t a moment’s rest from the sleepy air, and suddenly the songs are audible molasses. This isn’t helped by the downhill trend in quality of the songs and Legrand’s mild vocal cadence. Frankly, the album is far too safe and familiar. The instruments are not so much deliberate as they are timid, and the vocals never attempt anything to seize attention. Not only is its depression overwhelming, but it is difficult to hold back the yawns. “Bloom” has the qualities of a lullaby.
While most of this record is slow, it is not without exceptional moments. “Myth” has stylish guitar flourishes and is an all-around quality song that stands out from the ones following it. “Wild” ends in a seamless fusion of the vocals and synth and “New Year” is plain catchy. The rest of “Bloom” is a different story. “The Hours” has choppy vocal delivery, “Wishes” is just a long and pointless buildup, and “Other People” is the kind of song that might as well end after the first chorus. Even after multiple listens, few of the tracks distinguish themselves in memory. Needless to say, these songs are all tedious listens and sound too similar. “Lazuli”, an equally dull song, goes nowhere for three minutes and then leaves us with a two-minute broken record of an outro. Over repetition makes another appearance in the final track, “Irene”. Halfway through a song with an excellent melody, everything cuts except a droning synth and guitar. Next, the layers are brought back at an excruciatingly slow pace that is enough to botch the song’s climax. Then, after minutes of silence, a hidden track meanders its way to the album’s close.
The Shoegaze genre faded from existence for a reason; people get bored easily. Beach House cannot expect to make the same songs and hold the twenty-first century listener’s attention. Unless they make some major changes to their sound, their following won’t be getting much larger.
Album Review by Zach Norton, January 2017
It’s Thursday which means it’s time for one of my favorite segments to write on Erik’s Album Reveiws: The Thursday Ten. You guys should know the rules by now; every album is listened to 1-2 times and given a numerical, whole number score out of 10. This week I chose a bunch of 2016 (and one 2015) releases that I really enjoy, so the ratings might not fluctuate that much and might appear inflated to a new reader. However, if you read last week’s “The Thursday Ten”, which also happens to be posted below, then you will know that I don’t always give ratings this high. All albums mentioned can be streamed on any of the major music streaming and distribution sites. Give them a listen and let us know what you think of the ratings and what albums we should rate next below in the comments!
- Show Me A Dinosaur – Show Me A Dinosaur: 9/10
- Chance The Rappers – Coloring Book: 8/10
- Hotel Books – Run Wild, Stay Alive: 7/10
- In Hearts Wake and Northlane – Equinox: 8/10
- Little Brother – Cleveland, OH: 8/10
- Michael Barr – Back Home EP: 9/10
- Darkthrone – Artic Thunder: 8/10
- WHENINROME – Half – Hearted: 7/10
- Wormed – Krighsu: 8/10
- Pity Sex – White Hot Moon: 8/10
Last week’s “The Thursday Ten”:
This week a new segment is getting introduced on Erik’s Album Reviews called “The Thursday Ten”. Every week on Thursday ten albums will be given a quick rating of a whole number out of 10. These albums are listened to 1-2 times through max and will not have any other description besides their numerical rating. However, it is common that an album mentioned on “The Thursday Ten” will later get a 500 word album review or a full album review. Also if you would like a more in depth review for an album or have a different opinion on the ratings let us know in the comments or shoot us an email! But regardless, here is the first ever post for “The Thursday Ten”:
- Arbes – Swimmer: 10/10
- Void Omnia – Dying Light: 8/10
- Taking Back Sunday – Tidal Wave: 8/10
- Danny Brown – Really Doe (feat. Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul, and Earl Sweatshirt) *single/not an album*: 9/10
- Frank Ocean – Blonde: 7/10
- Young Thug – Jeffery: 8/10
- West Berlin – The Northern Misery: 8/10
- Trophy Eyes – Chlorine: 9/10 – Heaven Sent: 8/10 *singles/not an album*
- Deafheaven – New Bermuda: 6/10
- Aborted – Retrogore: 8/10
There are too many releases listed to post videos and links for every single one, however, every single album rated can be heard on Spotify, Youtube, or Bandcamp. Make sure to give these records a listen and let us know what albums should make it onto the list for next week’s “The Thursday Ten”!