With so much new music released every year, it’s hard to keep up. With Micro Beards, we’re here for your weekly dose of bite-sized reviews both new and old.
This week on Micro Beards:
- Stereogum Presents… Enjoyed: A Tribute To Björk’s Post
- Royal Bangs – Let It Beep
- Sea Wolf – White Water, White Bloom
- Animal Collective – Fall Be Kind
Enjoyed: A Tribute to Björk’s Post (November 2009, Stereogum)
It’s been 15 years since Björk released Post. The album was met with high critical acclaim and Bjork has since become driving influence in international music. To pay homage, Stereogum has teamed up with a stellar cast of current indie rock artists including The Dirty Projectors, Xiu Xiu, No Age, Final Fantasy, and Ed Droste to recreate the album in its entirety. Enjoyed, amazingly, stretches listeners far beyond the weirdness that was the original work. Drum samples are chopped and hurled through the air and vocals are sputtered and effected in an operatic anthem-like tone characteristic of Björk herself.
(3 out of 5 beards)
01. Army of Me (by Liars)
04. It’s Oh So Quiet (by Bell)
08. Possibly Maybe (by Final Fantasy & Ed Droste)
Royal Bangs – Let It Beep (September 2009, Audio Eagle Records)
Tenessee’s Royal Bangs reminds us what dance-rock is like before the radio destroys it. This band follows a very accessible format that will allow hipsters to finally replace Passion Pit on of their wop party playlists.
(3.5 out of 5 beards)
01. War Bells
03. My Car is Haunted
Sea Wolf – White Water, White Bloom (Sept 2009, Dangerbird)
This scope of this album is unbelievably vast for its indie-folk claim. The first track, “Wicked Blood” flashes hints of Neon Bible-era Arcade Fire, but the tracks that follow can be described so much differently. Acoustic guitar and violin lie at the core of every track but the electric instruments and drums that surround them work to pull each song in an entirely different direction.
(4 out of 5 beards)
02. Dew in the Grass
05. O Maria!
Animal Collective – Fall Be Kind (November 2009, Domino Recording Co.)
Many listeners are a bit reluctant to allow themselves to enjoy Animal Collective’s weirdness. Fall Be Kind is an excellent place to start. The EP is a big blurry trip through the lands of Björk and The Beach Boys all at the same time. Those who enjoy more structure will be soothed by the string bass that gently carves chord progression into electronic sound clouds. Unexplainable transitions will keep you on your toes while recurring vocal themes, synths, and samples bridge the gap between them. Fall Be Kind is definitely one of the best releases I’ve come across this year.
(5 out of 5 beautifully unshaven manes)
05. I Think I Can