August 27, 2011
Today's Hotness: Roberts & Lord, Under Electric Light, Color Radio
>> '80s-styled hooks and boundless whimsicality makes Roberts & Lord's forthcoming sugary longplayer Eponymous curiously arresting. The MySpace-spawned (really) duo of Californian Rafter Roberts and Londoner Simon Lord operates within a shifting grid of styles as varied as the bastardized Go Team!-goes-dancehall stomper "Windmill" or the exceptionally odd head-bobber "Mosquito." The gritty backing tracks were recorded to a four-track machine by Mr. Roberts in San Diego, and then sent through Intertubes to Mr. Lord, who added vocals and arranged things. While formally mediated by this swappy-swappy, the resulting music has a very spontaneous feel to it. There's a little silliness, too, but the bump-and-bounce of the rhythm tracks and the pronounced melodies elevate everything beyond a place where that matters. Asthmatic Kitty releases Roberts & Lord's Eponymous Sept. 6, in time to rock a million undergrad dorm rooms, as it should. You don't have to take our word for it: check out the bangin' "Windmill" below. It doesn't look like pre-orders for the record are live yet, but we'll bet you dollars to donuts that as soon as it is available, you will be able to purchase Eponymous right here. Asthmatic Kitty has issued a handful of other records by Roberts under the nom de guerre Rafter; check out all the releases right here.
Roberts & Lord, "windmill" by asthmatickitty
>> Montreal-based shoegaze pop outfit Under Electric Light's tune "Waiting For The Rain To Fall" is not only very appropriate for writing about on the night before a hurricane, but it is also the sort of dense, distorted, swirling and melodic rocker that we can spin endlessly. Under Electric Light principal Danny Provencher (whose band should not be confused with the also-quite-good UK act Under Alien Skies, whose Paste EP from January is a winner) reports the concise, three-minute composition is the product of his love for The Beach Boys and classic shoegaze music. It's certainly not hard to hear the latter; we typically associate the former with sculpted vocal harmonies, but the overt euphoniousness certainly nods toward the work of Mr. Wilson. "Waiting For The Rain To Fall" is the title track to Under Electric Light's self-released full-length debut (available in Japan on Fastcut Records), and you can download the tune for free at Bandcamp; check it out at the embed below. The full-length was preceded by a series of EPs released between 2002 and 2007, also available at Bandcamp.
>> Chicago-based dream pop concern Color Radio have a well-composed little calling card in the form of its yearning and reverbed song "Quiet House." The tune touts crystalline guitar leads, strident drumming, a nice melodic cushion of ambient synths and an earnest lyric, all building to a stormy final chorus that suddenly dips behind a curtain of chiming synth that fades into the next tune, "Smile At A Funeral." "Quiet House" features on the quartet's measured but promising debut Architects which is available to stream at Soundcloud at this link. Architects was issued on Color Radio's own label Mapless Records June 14. Color Radio toured the record for two weeks in June, including a stop at PA's Lounge in Somerville, MA. An earlier digital single and EP, "Be Safe, Beware" and Newest News respectively, are available at Color Radio's Bandcamp page right here.
Quiet House by colorradio