At long last, Ben and I have emerged from the depths of Finals-induced hell to bring some actual activity to this blog. Whether or not such collegiate woes are a valid excuse for our downtime (they probably aren’t), we’re now back to provide you with your required dose of music, snarkiness, and long, overwrought adjectives. Due to the enormous amount of submissions and releases that landed while we were out, I’ve gathered some favorite new jams into this all-encompassing catch-up post. To anyone we missed: we’re sorry.
Mountains — Thousand Square [mp3]
This breezy, synth-driven mediation from Mountains' Air Museum (out tomorrow on Thrill Jockey) has been making the rounds for a little under a month, but it still hasn’t lost its jaw-dropping mystique. This Brooklyn duo has always had a knack for patient, sprawling drones, and Air Museum is just another reason for gushing.
Dylan Ettinger — Lion of Judah [mp3]
Not Not Fun furthers their monopoly on weird, space-age outsider pop with Dylan Ettinger's new Lion of Judah 7”, which sees him abandoning the RoboCop ruminations of New Age Outlaws for new planes of cosmic existence. Lean back, breathe deep, and blast off.
Death Grips — Culture Shock [mp3]
If you’re familiar with Exmilitary, the debut mixtape from Sacramento trio Death Grips, you already know the drill: My War meets 36 Chambers, head-rattling, military-grade drums from Zach Hill, and noise- lot’s of it. Love it or hate it, this is some of the most visceral, game-changing hip-hop released in 2011.
King Dude — My Beloved Ghost [mp3]
Bathetic comes crashing through the gates with another slab of gold, this time from T.J. Cowgill’s King Dude project. If you’re a fan of Cowgill’s devil-centric clothing brand Actual Pain, you should already have a pretty firm handle on what this stuff sounds like; “My Beloved Ghost”, coasting along on a cavernous bed of acoustic guitar, weaves a delightfully dark tale of blood-drinking and flesh-eating. Cheery? ‘Course not- but it might be the best pagan-friendly release you’ll hear all year.
Holy Spirits — To the Shore [mp3]
Up-and-comers Father Daughter Records have yet to disappoint when it comes to quality releases, so it’s no surprise that their new Mutual Benefit/Holy Spirits split is looking to be a home run. Spirits’ “To the Shore”, which was premiered by Get Off the Coast, is a sparse, beautifully organic cut that begs to be blasted from some faraway treetops.
Ganglians — Jungle [mp3]
There’s a lot of exciting developments happening over at the Lefse offices, one of which is the announcement of a brand new Ganglians album. If the hazy, ramshackle delicacy of “Jungle” is any indication, Still Living (out August 23) should be an absolute smash. In related news, the Waaga family has now been joined by Ohio’s Blithe Field (Spencer Radcliffe), who cooks up some lovely sample-based tunes steeped in nostalgia. Hear "Crushing" and catch Two Hearted when it drops here.