by: Sam Farzin, KUCI Music Director
Destroyer - Trouble In Dreams [Merge]
Musical inventiveness coupled with crescendoing nasal trouba-ramblings. Destroying mastermind Dan Bejar wins again! I used to drop so many quarters on that game RAMPAGE at the arcade where you destroyed the world with like a Godzilla lookalike or a King Kong lookalike or a third big monster I can't remember. Yeah.
Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles [Last Gang]
This is edgy dance music that has caused a lot of hubbub in the last few years. Cutnpaste nihilistic gutpunching 8bit party music.
She & Him - Volume One [Merge]
M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel: beautiful people making pretty, nice, lovable music.
V/A - Love & Circuits: A Cardboard Records Compilation [Cardboard]
An overwhelming, nonsensically monster 57-track compilation featuring a TON of amazing artists. AND NO OPI. PLAY IT ALLLLLLL. BONUS FUN FACT: TRACK 20 ON DISC 2 IS A TREY TOLD 'EM (IE GIRL TALK PROJECT) TRACK THAT IS A MEGAMASHUP OF THE WHOLE REST OF THE COMPILATION! RAD!
Beat Circus - Dreamland [Cuneiform]
It's unfair and too easy to compare this to Tom Waits but I just did, so there. Weirdo-americabaret songs that wouldn't be out of place at "the carnival in Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes."
Sian Alice Group - 59.59 [The Social Registry]
This skews experimental. Lots of short tracks (the "Interludes"). Weird beats and nice beats, drones, ethereal vocals, klingklang jocularity, mallet-instruments. These guys have toured with Spiritualized. This should really probably be in experimental. Play the track "Motionless." WOOO!
Big Dipper - Supercluster [Merge]
Mid/late 80s guitar-based indie-rock noiseniks. This is a triple-disc featuring three full-lenght reissues, bonus tracks, and what looks like a full new album. I looked in the library to see if we already had the reissued albums, but we don't so here is a supersized big gulp of new jams.
Bipolar Bear - Mountain Dewd [Yosada]
LA-based dissonance in the vein of the Fall but more punk and recklessly lo-fi. This band actually played at UCI a few months ago!
Soundpool - Dichotomies + Dreamland [Aloft]
Swirly guitars, vocals sandwiched tautly between the rhythm etc. etc. my bloody valentine but it's actually totally solid and catchy and good.
Single Frame - Single Frame [Self-released]
I don't know how to describe this except it is GREAT, upstanding indierock branched from the same tree that produced (gulp) The Killers. Nothing new here, but good work.
Putois - The Problem Is Not A Problem Anymore [Cerebral Cliff]
Well-executed sparse acoustic numbers. And I'm out of steam!