Tag Archives: 2019

Plaid – Maru (2019)

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The cosmic sound of ‘Maru’ is exactly what IDM should be in 2019. Released by Warp Records as the first single off Plaid’s 10th studio album Polymer, the track shimmers with kick drums and snares. It has been a long journey for the London duo – Ed Handley and Andy Turner released their first Plaid album, Mbuki Mvuki, in 1991.

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Danny Fernleigh & Tiguan Jones – Life in Monochrome (2019)

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Not actually sure where I found this song, but I think I was watching something with a soundtrack. It’s a modern take on the neon-lit, powder-fueled new-wave synth-pop of 1980s. I give you Danny Fernleigh and Tiguan Jones, whoever they may be.

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Fontaines D.C. – I Don’t Belong (2020)

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With last year’s release of their debut album Dogrel, Fontaines D.C. became one of the hottest post-punk bands on the planet. It’s good to have them back so soon. The single ‘I Don’t Belong’ kicks off their new album A Hero’s Death. Both were released earlier this summer.

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Tyler, The Creator – EARFQUAKE (2019)

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Last year, Tyler, The Creator, the rapper-turned-singer, released his sixth album, IGOR. It features the single ‘EARFQUAKE’ that he claims he’d originally written for Justin Bieber. Hard to imagine a production different to the idiosyncratic one it became. Tyler sings about heartbreak while supported by a blue suit, the vocals of R&B singer Charlie Wilson, Dev Hynes (fka Lightspeed Champion) and the indecipherable lines of Playboi Carti. Have a great weekend.

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Weyes Blood – Andromeda (2019)

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Last year, singer-songwriter Natalie Mering, aka Weyes Blood, made some very big waves. She started the year with the ethereal West Coast sounding single ‘Andromeda’. The song would feature on her third studio album Titanic Rising released on Sub Pop Records. Have a great weekend.

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Little Steven and The Interstellar Jazz Renegades – City Lights (2019)

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Last year, five years after its final episode aired, the soundtrack to Lilyhammer was released. It was scored by Steven Van Zandt, the star of show. He had pulled together the Interstellar Jazz Renegades, a group he had founded with the help of E Street Band bandmate Max Weinberg. With that band, he decided to have some fun. ‘City Lights’ is exactly that. Have a great weekend.

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The Japanese House ‎- We Talk All The Time (2019)

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Before we leave this cloud called dream pop, I give you Amber Bain. As The Japanese House, the London-based singer-songwriter has refined a lush sound that reminds me of Christine And The Queens. Last year, she released her first full-length album, Good at Falling. Track 3 is ‘We Talk All The Time’, on which Bain’s yearning vocals ponder that shift between infatuation and companionship. Concerned or celebratory? Certainly dreamy.

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Kučka – Real (2019)

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As Kučka, Laura Jane Lowther records and produces her own music. Distinctive vocals and analogue synths make for a version of dream pop that both Massive Attack and Björk fans might like. The Australian singer released the single ‘Real’ last year. She wants “to encourage people to lose themselves in their ideas, to really go deep, no matter how weird or unusual they think they are…”; sounds like chaos to me.

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Clairo ‎- Bags (2019)

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Last year, Clairo surfaced from her bedroom, but never let go of her lo-fi schooling. The release of Immunity has critics cooing for her adoption of a dream pop quality sealed with a breathless delivery as if you are the only person in the world she would dare to tell her secrets to. Its lush ballads and homespun soft-rock revealed behind it – not a girl, but decidedly a woman

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Cass McCombs ‎- Sleeping Volcanoes (2019)

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This morning, it’s another track off Tip Of The Sphere, Cass McCombs’ ninth studio album from last year. The Californian troubadour knows how to create an intro.

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Faye Webster ‎- Kingston (2019)

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As I depart my Thames-side hometown for a few days, I give you Faye Webster and her ‘Kingston’. The 2019 single marked her new deal with Secretly Canadian and provided an opportunity to sing about her native Georgia. “I don’t know that much about Kingston/ But I like the sound it makes when it starts pouring rain”.

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Stephen Malkmus ‎- Come Get Me (2019)

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“I’m all alone here, I can’t see/ Any reason to wallow/ In this decanter.” Stephen Malkmus endures. Pavement endures. Despite being labelled as his electronic album, last year’s Groove Denied has classic Malkmus fingerprints all over it. Take ‘Come Get Me’, it’s a lo-fi song with echoes of the Indian subcontinent, rather than Berlin, where he wrote the album during his ’00s residency there.

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9 of the best – sounds of 2019

Samuelsounds says no to a festive hiatus. Today, I leave you with my favourite sounds of 2019. Tomorrow, the 2010s. The sounds are in no particular order and as ever limited by what I’ve heard…

Sharon Van Etten ‎- Seventeen

Weyes Blood – Everyday

Aldous Harding – The Barrel

Foals – Exits

Big Thief – Not

Michael Kiwanuka – Final Days

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Honourable mentions also go to: Lizzo for ‘Juice‘; Kasper Marott for his Forever mix of ‘Drømmen om Ø’; Bill Callahan for ‘The Ballad of the Hulk‘; Cage The Elephant for ‘Ready To Let Go‘; Toro Y Moi for ‘Ordinary Pleasure‘; Tame Impala for ‘It Might Be Time‘; Andy Shauf for ‘Things I Do‘; Caribou for ‘Home‘; Whitney for ‘Giving Up‘; W. H. Lung for ‘Second Death Of My Face‘; and Devendra Banhart for ‘Kantori Ongaku‘.

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Louie Vega feat. Anané – Cosmic Witch (2019)

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A midweek disco interlude from a past blast. ‘Cosmic Witch’ is a space disco-infused house jam from Louie Vega, one half of the legendary Masters At Work. Featuring on his recent Expansions In The NYC album, the track uses a clever sample from Tony Silvester & The New Ingredient’s’ Cosmic Lady’. Fashions fade, but style is eternal.

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Big Thief ‎- Not (2019)

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It’s been a good year for Brooklyn-based Big Thief. Two albums (U.F.O.F. and Two Hands) and a series of classic songs. ‘Not’ featured on the latter of these recordings; it was released in October. When Adrienne Lenker sings, growls and gasps, it touches your soul.

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