New Music 1/11/19

(re-posted from Facebook, edited)

Completed New Music Week 2 through Tidal.

Each Friday release day, I’m going to download 5 albums with the only criteria being name recognition or the best pieces of cover art and review them. These are the releases of 1/11. Once again at the start of the year, choices are slim.

Song of the Week: Hero, “Stay the Night”
  • Album: Angelo De Augustine – Tomb
  • Previous Knowledge: None
  • Chosen: Album art
  • Review: Lately, album art with kids on the cover has been a hip hop thing but this was certainly not that. It’s a nice little singer-songwriter record with most songs being De Augustine playing only acoustic guitar or only piano. Now and again, there’s some basic use of drum pads. Overall though, it’s a nice simple little mellow folky pop record. It feels like forever since David Garza was one of my favorite artists and if he was still making music, I feel like this is what he should sound like.
  • Rating: 8/10
Angelo De Augustine’s “Tomb”
  • Album: Hero – Dirty Work
  • Previous Knowledge: None
  • Chosen: Album art. A young black man, looking like he’s in the 90s, with the name of the album in front, in a font that screams out electro something or other.
  • Review: My expectations based on cover art were finally on point. I expected some kind of electro based R&B and that’s what it was. If this was a Hero sandwich instead of an artist, this would be the salami stuffed inbetween the bun consisting of The Weeknd and Chromeo. Less funky than Chromeo but more heavy keywork work than the Weeknd – it really is like a great blend of the two. Highly recommended.
  • Rating: 9/10

Hero’s “Dirty Work”
  • Album: Minor Majority – Napkin Poetry
  • Previous Knowledge: None
  • Chosen: Chosen: Album Art. A drawing of a crumpled up napkins with some childlike text art around it.
  • Review: I doubt I would have picked this one if it was, say – July and there were 50 new releases but records just don’t get released in early January. Apparently, this is a 5-piece pop band from Norway. Listening to it, I would have just assumed this was a solo record. And apparently, these guys have been around since 2000, though this is the first release in ten years. They actually have a Norwegian Grammy. I read they are pop/rock – but I’d label them folk first, pop second. I hear no rock, at least in this album. Decent record. Will never see my ipod again but it is what it is.
  • Ranking: 7/10
Minor Majority’s “I’ve Been Here Before”
  • Album: Spidergawd – Spidergawd V
  • Previous Knowledge: None
  • Chosen: Album Art. A psychedelic forest mish-mosh of scantily clad fairies, foliage, animals and insects. Really quite cool.
  • Review: I would have been shocked if this was anything but psych rock and it is – another group from Norway – and I’m assuming this is album #5. It’s a rockin’ bluesy trippy type vibe with the rock being the most prominent element here. Well crafted, not too sprawling, not too bluesy – just the right amount of everything together. Another highly recommended one.
  • Rating: 9/10
Spidergawd’s “Knights of C.G.R.”
  • Album: You Tell Me – You Tell Me
  • Previous Knowledge: None
  • Chosen: Album Art. The side of a building with “You Tell Me” written on the window. Weird but intriguing.
  • Review: I checked their facebook page and saw the two members of this band met at a Kate Bush appreciation fest. A shiver went up my spine. But apparently I’m getting old and soft because 35 year old me would have spit down on this thing with a passion. Almost 43 year old me actually kind of liked it. Mostly folk-y, definite indie pop elements – pretty mellow record and yep, you guessed it – a large Kate Bush influence. Kate Bush fans should dig this. Since I did as well, Kate Bush fans might really fucking love this, since “fan” is not me.
  • Rating: 7.5/10
You Tell Me’s, “Get Out of the Room”

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