Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Purity Ring - "Fineshrine"

Purity Ring is a two-piece hailing from Canada, and they have turned about as many heads as an artist without a single full-length album out can turn. Last year they released breakout singles "Ungirthed" and "Belispeak." They earned themselves a fair share of fans early and garnered favorable comparisons to fellow electronic vocal acts like The Knife and anyone else influenced by moody hip-hop sounds, particularly fellow Canadian Grimes. These comparisons aren't too far off, but Purity Ring's blend of driving percussion, electro, and female vocal melodies call to mind an alternate reality Sleigh Bells that set up synths before they ever picked up guitars.  The band is currently gearing up to release it's first LP, titled Shrines. For the most part, the months leading up to it's drop have been a huge tease. The tease continues with the third single to come from the disc (following "Obedear" and the aforementioned "Ungirthed") titled "Fineshrine." This one may be one of the more hip-hop sounding tunes released by the band to date. It sounds like someone got a hold of a long lost Clams Casino instrumental and laid down vocals on it. It's remarkable and may be the best song released by the group to date. Listen to it at Pitchfork.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Moons - Bloody Mouth

Moons is the creative outlet of a Patrick Canaday, a 22 year old Atlanta native whose first single signals a pretty unique grasp of nighttime pop music. Bloody Mouth is the project's first official release, a 7" single that touches on Canaday's strengths pretty quickly. The title track is a rather spacey piece of music with a lot of instrumental sounds that immediately reveal why Canaday would want to go by "Moons." Even more intriguing is the single's b-side, titled "Waves at Night." It features some great robot/female astronaut harmonizing, and some truly stellar production. It's not as alien and cold as that would imply, however. Even the altered vocals have a distinctly human quality. No Recordings is selling the single on vinyl for a paltry sum, and there's even a great mood video out to go along with the title track. You can watch that here and keep this guy in your thoughts so you don't miss out on his future endeavors.

Slow Machete - Evening Dusk Choir

Slow Machete is the name bestowed upon an ambient musical project chiefly organized by Washington DC musician and humanitarian Joe Schafer. Evening Dusk Choir is the first release under this name, and it consists of field recordings from Schafer's trips to Haiti as part of post-2010 earthquake recovery efforts there. There are also several Haitian musicians featured in various capacities. World music with this sort of premise would usually sound awkwardly insincere and hamfisted, but the music doesn't beat the listener over the head with exotic sounds or ethnic traditions. The music seems more concerned with common creative threads that connect all of mankind rather than tangible differences. Many comparisons have been made to the music of Sigur Rós, and rightfully so. However, this music has a stranger beauty to it, and isn't easily described. You can watch the video for album standout "Fallen Mangoes" here and download the whole thing for free at the project's Bandcamp.