Andrew Medwed – Free ManSelf-Released-out now3.5 / 5 The cover may not look like much, but inside Ukranian Medwed debuts a rocking, stomping sense of musicianship. We appreciate the diversity of his songs, even if we don’t appreciate all of them, and the fact that he can go from garage-y swamp music to pop/rock in a track or two impresses us. We also appreciate the crafting of his songs: they’re full, they’re completely realized and written well. We’re going to admit, there isn’t anything here that surprises or astonishes us, other than the fact that this is a 100% self-release, but when we smell talent,Read More →

Admirers – Involuntary MemoryArdent Music-out now2.5 / 5 Electro-pop Memphisians Admirers debut their dreamy near-dozen. Now, you know we love ourselves some SVIIB and dance music, but dance music that doesn’t make you… well… dance? That we cannot tolerate. And yet Involuntary Memory is chock-a-block with tepid tempos, deflated beats, and just general averageness. These songs here all seem to borrow the same two-and-four beat, never changing, as reliable as the trains – moreso, jab at the MBTA. Which makes for exciting dancing, of course. The tragedy of it all is that “Return,” the opener-slash-single off the album, is really a great four-star bright popRead More →

Body Parts – Fire DreamFather/Daughter Records-out today3.5 / 5 Every now and then, we get completely sucked into a good dance/pop album. Fire Dream holds that kind of promise as an 80s inspired, uptempo pop album infused with catchy hooks, great choruses, and a pounding dance beat. We like it. Does it blast us out of our seat? Not quite; but the Los Angeles duo’s debut does impress us with their singable songs, sexy synth, and darned groovy vocals. Fire Dream is the kind of fun you want to have when you go to the beach: no bugs or kids, cool drinks, all sun andRead More →

Diane Coffee – My Friend FishWestern Vinyl– out Oct. 292.5 / 5 We love “Tale of a Dead Dog.” It’s absolutely gorgeous: with angelic vocals sings former Disney voice actor Shaun Fleming over melodic acoustic guitars. It’s a truly precious song. But now-Foxygen-drummer Fleming has a whole album to fill out, and our verdict on it is less than glowing. It’s not poorly executed, or dull in the writing; rather, it is simply unengaging. We have yet to find another song of the ten that gets us thinking (“Tale”), or dancing (“WWWoman”), or whatever one should be doing when you put on a song inRead More →