Singles Takes: This Song Is Awful/Awesome And You Are Stupid for Liking/Not Liking It (Sudan Archives, White Denim, Chromatics, Jon Spencer, Oliver Coates, Deeper)
Single Take is a Reviler feature where multiple people give a passing glance at some new music and causally rank it somewhere between 1 (Justin Beiber) and 10 (really amazing). Fun, right? Check out the latest installment below and feel free to tell us who stupid and out of touch we are based on our opinions. Arguing on the internet: the greatest of American traditions.
Sudan Archives “Nont for Sale”
Can’t get enough of Sudan Archives hypnotic, string-driven R&B. Her songwriting is so visionary and timeless, and this video is just badass. Don’t sleep on this EP.
This is actually one of favorite songs of 2018 already. The video is pretty badass too. Not really sure why Sudan Archives hasn’t blown up yet but I have a feeling it won’t be long.
Every time I hear a new song from Sudan Archives, I fall more in love with this artist. Her simple plucking of the violin over layered vocals is uber-catchy, certainly with lyrics like “My strings, propagate thru space-time”. I’m a fan, and I can’t wait to see her evolve as a performer. Extra point given for the video, I’ve watched it 5 times already.
White Denim “It Might Get Dark”
There’s a real kind of throwback 70’s rock sound to this, but in a way I don’t hate. It’s fun rock n’ roll even if its a little glossy.
I liked White Denim when they too a more circuitous route towards classic rock. This feels trite and too easy. I’m guessing this is something the Current likes?
Is it just me or does the lead singer sound a bit like Steve Miller? I like a good psych-rock band at live events, and I am sure these guys could rock the mainroom at First Avenue, but probably would not add this to my personal collection. Maybe they sell cool t-shirts? Gonna check out their online store.
Chromatics “Blue Girl”
So, I’ve been a pretty big fan of anything the label “Italians Do It Better” puts out. The Chromatics have been at the top of my list for a long time, with Ruth Radelet’s sad, smooth vocals mixed with Johnny Jewel’s instrumentals…I’m tranported to another time and space when I listen to this. Twin Peaks. Another artist of interest from this label is Glass Candy, who have an absolutely wonderful cover of “Computer Love” by Kraftwerk. I’m guilty of regularly checking to see if the Chromatics are touring, because this is a band I would absolutely love to cover some day. If anyone wants to hear more, I have a lot of the Chromatics on vinyl.
Most of the “Italo-Disco” sound that has become popular in the last decade or so has sort of escaped me – but I kind of like this. I foresee a glowing Pitchfork review in their future!
A video that is as opulent as the synth and vocal production on this track from the Italians Do It Better vets. Can’t say it is my favorite work by the band, but still is a solid homage to the glossiest part of 80’s synth pop.
Jon Spencer “Do the Trash Can”
OK, admittedly kind of a dumb song but Jon Spencer has always been more about attitude and style than highbrow lyricism. And in those areas he is one of the best. And pretty cool that this next one will be on In The Red.
Yeah, this is pretty fantastically absurd. Ha ha ha. I want this for a future record listening night at my space, and project that video on a wall.
Credit where credit is due. Jon Spencer has squeezed our more than his share from the template of dumb, snarky, fuzzy garage rock. He is getting long in the tooth, but no one could accuse him of taking himself seriously even after multiple decades of decadence. An appropriately minimal video for a song that doesn’t have a lot of moving parts.
Oliver Coates “A Church”
Really have dug the barrage of solo and collaborative materials Coates has dropped over the last 18 months. (If you haven’t heard his stunning solo album Upstepping you should check it out.) This song is haunting and sparse, but still feels full of live. Him hooking up with the outstanding RVNG Intl. label is really great news.
This is one of those songs that I feel like I should probably like more than I do, just based on bona fides alone. Seems like a super intelligent, sort of weird (but not too weird), expertly produced concoction. It doesn’t entirely connect with me but I feel like I can appreciate it from a distance.
Ah, good old space-timey, electro-pop. I love the disjointed feel to the beats, and the voacls. Not surprising, he’s worked with Radiohead, go figure! I’ll be adding this to my collection if it comes out on vinyl. I like this alot.
These guys have been on my radar for awhile due to their proximity and also that I have liked some of their songs. This isn’t really one of them though. I will keep listening though.
This song makes me feel like I do when I read endless negative posts on Facebook, or read about another insane policy our leaders are enacting. I close up my laptop and look for something to inspire me, or take me to another place. This song certainly echoes those feelings, and I want to hear more from this band. The other songs aren’t that depressing, are they?
A melodic take on dark post-punk, this song is pretty morose. Both the video and the music aren’t exactly going to brighten your day, but then again I don’t think that is their goal. A solid track but not something I’ll be spending a ton of time with.