Mini-Beats – September 2009

TortoiseBeacons Of Ancestorship (2009, Thrill Jockey) ♥♥
-sadly this album offers no consistency or flow whatsoever; not been impressed with their last 3 albums-
The Baird SistersLonely Town (2008, self-released) ♥♥♥
-Appalachian folk featuring Philly area natives Meg Baird and sister; a very soothing listen-
Drag The RiverHobo’s Demos (2000, Suburban Home) ♥♥♥½
-no standout tracks but probably one of their more solid releases-
Timber TimbreTimber Timbre (2009, Arts & Crafts) ♥♥½
-a moody, modern take on 70’s blues/folk; memorable if not a bit repetitive-
Neon IndianPsychic Chasms (2009, self-released) ♥♥½
-clear references to the Beach Boys and um, the Bee Gees (ew); very close to what I imagine the next Of Montreal LP to sound like-
Pete and The PiratesLittle Death (2008, Stolen) ♥♥♥½
-rather tuneful indie rock not unlike Someone Still Loves You…or The Shins but British-
TravelMe and My Friend Noise (2002, Starfish Ltd.) ♥♥½
-remember Home? or imagine a lo-fi Van Pelt…..-
FrancesAll The While (2009, Gigantic) ♥♥♥♥
-backing band for Paul Hogan’s Frances album proves they can do it on their own-
The Ghost Is DancingBattles On (2009, Sonic Unyon) ♥♥♥½
-a few short steps away from greatness;RIYL Stars Of Track and Field & Headlights-
OwenNew Leaves (2009, Polyvinyl) ♥♥♥
-Mike’s latest sometimes teeters on the edge of AOR mediocrity; still a few gems to be found-
The Twilight SadForget The Night Ahead (2009, FatCat) ♥♥♥
-at some point this underachieving unit will string together a complete album of humdingers-
HEALTHGet Color (2009, Lovepump United) ♥♥½
-a few impressive noise rock moments but the pointless ‘vocals’ dragged this out of contention-
Joe PugNation Of Heat EP (2008, self-released) ♥♥♥♥
-Dylan-esque folk…done well-
Ramona FallsIntuit (2009, Barsuk) ♥♥♥
-member of Menomena breaks off to create eclectic mood-pop album-
The Mountain MoversLet’s Open Up The Chest (2008, Safety Meeting) ♥♥½
-Byrds inspired jangle/sunshine pop-
Winter’s FallWinter’s Fall (2008, self-released) ♥♥♥½
-straightforward Americana with a ton of melodic twang; recommended for fans of Broken Family Band-
EelsHombre Lobo (2009) ♥♥♥
-a little more intense than some of E’s more recent releases; expect a few raunchy dirty-blues rock tracks-
Trouble BooksEndless Pool (2009, MIE) ♥♥♥
-short EP of leftovers from the United Colors album; equally as enjoyable as said LP-
The DimesNew England EP (2009, Pet Marmoset) ♥♥♥
-mellow alt.-indie; preferred their LP to this limited digital-only effort; repectable cover of Lennon’s ‘Watching The Wheel’-
Sea WolfWhite Water, White Bloom (2009, Dangerbird) ♥♥♥
-these guys pretty much stay true to form on their latest LP; few exceptional songs amongst a bit too much filler-
Ross Island BridgeVol. 1: The Process Is Now The Work (2009, self-released) ♥♥½
-pretty sweet collaboration between Ross Beach and local musicians; songs are a little bit lacking though-
MapsTurning The Mind (2009, Mute) ♥♥½
-as always, Jimmy Chapman finds a way to put 2 awesome songs on his album…then surrounds them with filler-
A.A. BondyWhen The Devil’s Loose (2009, Fat Possum) ♥♥♥½
-not as immediately affecting as his debut but worth repeated listens-
Fatal FilmThrill’r (2009, Cosmodemonic Telegraph) ♥♥♥
-post-punk channeled through the likes of Jawbox and Girls Against Boys-
Stars Of Track and Field – A Time For Lions (2009, Wind-Up) ♥♥½
-sadly this was aimed at an audience I am not apart of…bound to sell millions-
Jason Isbell and The 400 UnitJason Isbell and The 400 Unit (2009, Lightning Rod) ♥♥♥
-didn’t quite enjoy these songs as much as their Daytrotter session-
The Jet RodriguezSeven Hour Night Shifts (2009, Osceola) ♥♥♥½
-lo-fi troubadour singing sad songs and playing banjo; ftw-
SwansawCathedral Middle Moon EP (2008, self-released) ♥♥½
-quiet/loud post-rock-slash-shoegaze effort; only suffered from poor production; gearing up for the LP-
AlbumenLake Desolation (2005, Treble Hook) ♥½
-this basically goes nowhere, means nothing; not what I expected from a member of Pants Yell….-
Withered HandYou’re Not Alone EP (2009, SL) ♥♥♥
-Edinburgh band strips down to a bare folk-oriented effort-
Withered HandReligious Song EP (2008, SL) ♥♥♥
-backyard folk featuring banjo, accordion and weirdness-
King Of Spain – Entropy (2008, New Grenada) ♥♥♥
-introspective sad-core from former member of Pohgoh and Maccabees
Ed LaurieMeanwhile In The Park (2008, self-released) ♥♥♥♥
-awesome British chamber-folkist; highly recommended for fans of Devendra or Nick Drake-
The SubterraneansNow That It’s Sinking In EP (2008, Pollen) ♥♥♥
-now defunct folk-hop from Brooklyn; strays not too far from their full-length-
Justin VernonHazletons EP (2006, self-released) ♥♥♥♥
-this is pretty much like having another Bon Iver album at your disposal (sweet!)-
Band Of HorsesCease To Begin (2007, Sub Pop) ♥♥♥½
-a rare case of something awesome working itself into the top 40 lineup; solid album altogether-
Old CanesFeral Harmonic (2009, Saddle Creek) ♥♥♥
-folky side project of Appleseed Cast drummer; a few moments reminiscent of their excellent debut-
The ClienteleBonfires On The Heath (2009, Merge) ♥♥½
-floaty 60’s influenced indie-pop; lacking the hooks of previous recent albums-
Still Life StillGirls Come Too (2009, Arts & Crafts) ♥♥♥
-an oddly straightforward release for A&C; for fans of the more angular side of DCFC-
Chuck RaganGold Country (2009, Side One Dummy) ♥♥♥
-my first experience with Chuck’s new solo efforts; solid twangy punk-folk though I prefer his work with Rumbleseat; the instrumentation here is a little too wimpy for his rugged delivery-

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