Photo by Flickr user Роман Карчмитович (creative commons).
For some years now, I have made these monthly summaries of what I really, really liked that month.
Here is my summary of the releases I loved the most in FEBRUARY.
The list is in no particular order, but the ones I loved the most are marked with a red ||.
SINGLES I LOVED THIS MONTH
From the singles this month, I especially liked the new songs from:
Hostess – “Valentine” Hostess is the new project of ex-CAP PAS CAP front-woman Gráinne Dee, and her debut single is amazing. Synthbased dreampop. I can’t stop humming “Valentine…”
. This is sooo good! Her debut album will be out this Summer. (Spotify)
Bas Jan – “No sign” Sharp edged, fun and post punky art pop from the trio of Serafina Steer, Jenny Moore and Sarah Anderson. Bass, violin, drums and singing. I have loved what Serafina Steer has done earlier,and she is the main songwriter in Bas Jan. I love this too. A lot. (Spotify)
Exiles – “Nobody knows” What a great song this is! I have really enjoyed Exiles’ earlier releases, but this new song really hit me in the heart. Warm, jangly dreampop with stunning vocals and a melody that will stay in the ear for hours. (Spotify)
Brightness – “Oblivion” Australian one man band Brightness’ new single is a super catchy indiepop song with distorted bass and “singable guitar-lines”. (Spotify)
kathinka – “Peace and love” The debut single from Norwegian band kathinka makes me want more, more, more! Dreamy pop with guitar stabs that remind of Slowdive or Cocteau Twins and warm, rich, beautiful vocals. (Spotify)
Girl Ray – “Stupid things” I am pretty sure that even if Girl Ray tried hard to make something really awful, they would still make an awesome pop song. Very melodic indiepop with a touch of the 70s. (Spotify)
You will find these and even more of my other favourite singles in the full Spotify list.
ALBUMS I LOVED THIS MONTH
The Hundredth Anniversary – Sea State Pictures || After the release of several brilliant singles and EPs, Brighton trio The Hundredth Anniversary finally released their debut album “Sea State Pictures” this month. I admit that I often use the phrase “my new favourite band“, but this is my new favourite band right now. This may also be my favourite release this year, – at least one of them, – at least right now… 😉 The album is perfect. The warm, calming vocals of Eleanor Rudge glides and shines into beautiful and unique melodies, on top of mesmerizing tom-heavy drums and guitars that captures the emotions in the songs perfectly, – always changing, from powerful cascades of sound via textured carpets to calm and gentle when the songs need that. Everything works, and it is a pleasure to listen to The Hundredth Anniversary’s music. Oh, wow, this is good. (Spotify)
Jens Lekman – Life will see you now || At first listen, I didn’t like this because it didn’t sound like the Jens I expected. This time he has flirted more with upbeat disco rhythms than on his previous albums, and I guess that came as a bit of a surprise to me. Then I listened again. And again. And again
when necessary. Patients may change treatment viagra pills – a focused physical examination should be performed.
. And I became hooked. This is still the Jens that I love. He still makes great songs, and Jens Lekman is a unique story teller. (Spotify)
Blonde Tongues – Safe like silk in polyester sheets || This is a new band for me, but they have been around some time, and “Safe like silk in polyester sheets” is their second album. The quartet from Brisbane, Australia make very dreamy, calm and melodic guitar-based indiepop, and I am reminded of bands like The Clientele and to some extent Galaxie 500 or the calmer bands on the early Creation Records. The album is really pleasing for the ears, and it makes me want to hear more from them. You will like this, I promise! (Spotify)
D.A. Stern – Aloha Hola || Another debut album, – this one out on Two Syllable Records. I don’t know much about the artist, but the music is very good guitar driven indie with great melodies and pleasant vocals. (Spotify)
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Novella – Change of state || “Change of state” is the London quartet Novella’s second album, and I just love their layered vocals, perfect harmonies and dreamy, rhythmic kraut-psych-pop. 10 out of 10. That’s not a rating, but it’s the number of songs on the album that I love. (Spotify)
Dominic – Goodnight, Doggies || This was quite a positive surprise. I hadn’t heard Dominic’s music before, but then after reading his bio, I realized that I had, many times. This is his solo-debut, but he has been a member of bands like Hop Along, Cold Fronts, Mewithoutyou and a session musican to records from Kendrick Lamar, Mac Miller, and others. The album is kind of “all over the place” in style and genres, but I guess rough, pretty, sad indie/indiepop is an ok description. The melodies are often sweet, happy-sounding, catchy and hummable, but the lyrics are very dark. (Spotify)
Hand Habits – Wildly Idle (Humble before the void) || Meg Duffy, aka Hand Habits, is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from New York, and I THINK this is her debut album, out on Woodsist. The album feels very calm, intimate, vulnerable and bedroomy, but with more interesting production details (and definitely better sound!) than most bedroom recordings have. It is a beautiful album, and I just love her voice! (Spotify)
The Yearning – From dawn till dusk (2011-2014) || This is a 22 track compilation of The Yearning’s older songs, released on Elefant Records. If you are allergic to cuteness, shalalas, dubidam’s and the lighter side of 60s pop, you should avoid this. If you, like me, love all those things, – start listening! (Spotify)
Molly Burch – Please be mine || Austin, Texas artist Molly Burch released her debut album on Captured Tracks this month. It is pretty different than the usual “Captured Tracks sound”, with the deep, rich vocals of Molly Burch and her pop melodies with a touch of 50s pop. I like it. (Spotify)
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Frontier Ruckus – Enter the kingdom || Oh, I really like this! The Michigan-based quartet make gentle chamber folk-pop songs with light melancholy and smart lyrics. This is the band’s fifth album, and there are so many gems on it. For those who have followed this blog for some time, you may know how much I love the Norwegian indiepop band Making Marks, and Frontier Ruckus’ music reminds me a bit of their calmer, folksy moments. They also remind me of another favourite of mine, Page France. Very good! (Spotify)
King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – Flying microtonal banana || Only by reading the band name and the album title, you already know there’s something weird going on. This is a weird, fun, energetic, melodic and good psychedelic pop/rock album. Amazing rhythms, much influence from eastern culture and lots of energy. (Spotify)
31Ø8 – 31Ø8 (BLU) || Fuzzy indiepop with shoegaze and post punk influences. This is his second album, and also his second self-titled album (the debut was called 31Ø8 (PNK) ), and both are good. The album is out on Jigsaw Records. In case you were wondering: It’s 3-1-zero-8. (Spotify)
4th Curtis – I won the pageant || 4th Curtis is an all-trans indie pop band from Saint Paul, MN. Their new album includes 10 powerful songs, – mostly with both edge and jangle. I love the strong vocals and lyrics on this one. A very good album. (Spotify)
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Jesca Hoop – Memories are now || I have waited for this one for a long time. I love Jesca Hoop’s music, and her unique way of writing music and lyrics. She’s one of those artists who make the musician in me go “Oh, clever, I wish I had thought of that!”. She is unique. In the last 10 years, she has released 4 studio albums, some acoustic compilations and a (very good) duet album with Sam Beam. This album is full of ideas and weirdness and beauty. Folk/artpop/something… (Spotify)
Transfigure – Translation || If you were a synthpop-fan in the 80s and had bands like Depeche Mode, OMD, Clan of Xymox, New Order and others on your list of great bands, you will most certainly like this. Their darkish synthpop sound in combination with new wave/post punk-guitars and very good songs and melodies, makes this sound perfect in my ears. And yes, I was a synthpop-fan in the 80s. And a new wave/postpunk-fan too. The duo from Newcastle upon Tyne call their music “Euro-Wave”, and I must admit that I have no clue what that is. I call this good music. (Spotify)
Vagabon – Infinite worlds || Cameroon-born, New York-raised Lætitia Tamko, multi-instrumentalist and producer, is Vagabon, and she has recorded under this name since 2014. Her new album is emotional, intimate, raw and full of contrasts. Musically, the style on the album ranges from something that may sound like the rough, indiepop’y early days of My Bloody Valentine (listen to “Minneapoiis”) via modern folky songs (“alive and well”) to almost chill out electronica (“Mal ã L’aise”). Tamko’s strong and unique voice binds it all together. (Spotify)
The Courtneys – The Courtneys II || This album opens strong with the amazing “Silver Velvet” and from there it goes from one good song to another and another and another. This is a really good garagey indiepop album, with catchy melodies and a great feel. (Spotify)
Froth – Outside (briefly) || Oh, I am so tired of typing descriptions now… Can we just say that I like this album? Thank you. Listen. It is good. Sorry, Froth, for being tired just when I was about to write about your album. You don’t deserve my laziness. Indie/dreampop/shoegaze. (Spotify)
Julie’s haircut – Invocation and ritual dance of my demon twin || I love the cover art! And the music. Psychedelic rock/pop from Italy. I even like the saxophones here. That is rare. (Spotify)
Teen Daze – Themes for dying earth || The 5th album from Teen Daze feels almost like a movie soundtrack. Sometimes ambient, instrumental abstract songs emerge inbetween the dreamy, warm and catchy electronic pop songs. It’s an interesting album, and a very beautiful one. (Spotify)
Business of dreams – Business of dreams || A very pleasant listen! This is the solo project from Corey Cunningham of Terry Malts, Magic Bullets and The Cosmos. In Business of Dreams, the distorted guitars from Terry Malts are gone, and he makes warm indiepop with lots of synths, jangly guitars, reverbed snares and very good vocals. I really like this! (Spotify)
EPs I LOVED THIS MONTH
Enderby’s Room – My old friend || This is another release on this list that I have been waiting in excitement for. I am always waiting in excitement for any new music from Enderby’s Room. These 3 folky indie/pop songs are so beautiful, and sometimes when I listen, I kind of feel that the band is here with me in the room, playing. Dan Mayfield, the band’s songwriter, has been involved in so many wonderful projects, as a band member (Owl & Mouse), a session musician (Allo’ Darlin, Darren Hayman, Smile Down Upon Us +++), a children’s book writer (Jaasper and the magpie) and a noise-and-sound-creativity-teacher for kids in his School of Noise project.
Enderby’s Room’s debut album will be out in April on Fika Recordings. (Spotify)
Ghost Thoughts – Purple period || This EP, out on Jigsaw Records, is probably one of my absolute favourite EPs so far this year. Ghost Thoughts is the new project from Davina Shell of Thee Ahs, and she has worked together with her friends on this EP, including Sarah from Thee Ahs. Thee Ahs made so many great songs, and I was so sad when they split, but Ghost Thoughts is a wonderful replacement. 6 very very good indiepop songs, beautiful vocals (different vocalists on each track), a “calm-ish” mood and somewhat dark lyrics. (Spotify)
Secret Meadow – Same old fear || Oh, I like this! This is the debut release from Secret Meadow, a new band from Jakarta, Indonesia, and they definitely know how to make good, warm indiepop-melodies. I think their label Jigsaw Records describe the band’s sound perfectly on their Bandcamp page: “Imagine the sound and atmosphere of the Cure or Slowdive, but with melodies that rival anything the Radio Dept. have ever written, and mostly upbeat songs with driving rhythms and vocals that are soft yet confident. And the guitars! Oh, the wonderful, jangly guitars… ” (Spotify)
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The Whooperups – Sensible daydreams || An indiepop supergroup? The Whooperups are Anna Cory from the Spook School, BeckyHealey from Wolf Girl and Camille Fry from Charla Fantasma. Fuzzy, messy and very, very catchy guitar pop. A very good debut EP. (Spotify)
Holy Now – Please call me back || Swedish indiepop. Holy Now make irrestistible pop songs, and there are four of those great ones on this EP. Now I am waiting for an album. (Spotify)
Letting up despite great faults – Alexander devotion || Another very fine release from Letting up despite great faults. Dreamy indiepop with shoegaze elements and soft vocals. (Spotify)
The Crayolas – The Crayolas || Jangly surf-pop/indiepop from Paraguay. Four good tracks. Recommended! (Spotify)
Ali Burress – Dwell || That voice! I love the warm calm of her voice and the lovely folky melodies on this EP. A great EP to listen to in the early mornings or the late at nights. (Spotify)
Dolly Spartans – Time sides with no one || New York based garage pop with easy-to-remember melodies and energetic songs. (Spotify)
Joy again – Joy again EP || Lofi bedroom pop with a unique sound. The songs are so good! (Spotify)
Listen to most of the songs from this list on Spotify: