The Zolas already gave the world one great novelist (that was Émile), now two younger members of the family are trying their luck as musicians. We’ll see, but this rather minimalist, “postmodern” pop sounds more than promising.
According to their Facebook page bio, Zachary Gray is the main songwriter of the duo, but that’s really only a guess, because the text is quite ambiguous. It reads like this:
“The Zolas’ tumultuous songwriting captures the zeitgeist of being in your 20s, Read More →
Cold Specks a.k.a. Al Spx is a Canadian singer-songwriter based in London, who has released her first album ‘I Predict A Graceful Expulsion’ in June. I guess this stage name is just a more pronounceable variant of the real one. But she says, its real purpose is “to put some distance between herself and the album’s sparsely arranged, evocative and ‘brutally honest’ songs.” (CBC.ca)
Listening to these songs, it’s no big wonder that she feels she needs some distance. For me, they are about the endless frustration over death. Love and faith offer no comfort. Well, that’s not a standpoint you can remain in for long without losing your sanity. Maybe someone, who has no will to live, could. (Or someone called Schopenhauer.) But everybody else should escape from it.
On the other hand, it’s all a bit like vampire stories. Those are also about blood, pain and death, but still, very few qualify as tragedies. We read or watch them for the chills, and maybe that’s how we should listen to Al’s music, too. After all, this is just a way to show respect towards something really powerful.
David Ratté’s band, Will Driving West released their second LP last month, titled ‘Castles’. He and bandmate Andréa Bélanger sing in his low-key compositions.
We get lots of quiet guitar and piano while verses and choruses alternate neatly. Nothing revolutionary here, these guys are not experimenting with their arrangements or song structures. But those fancy things are not always needed or wanted by everyone. Will Driving West manage to produce a couple of lovably modest tracks that are always nice to listen to.
Jesse Marchant, better known as JBM, will release his second LP ‘Stray Ashes’ in four days.
Depressing and uplifting at the same time, his music can stand comparison with Bon Iver’s. His lyrics are all about hearts on sticks or hearts hung from branches in the night, and I’ve promised myself to stay away from such thoughts, but songs like these make me want to be a bit sad for a while. Sadness is kind of beautiful, you know.
Then the music is over, and slowly I cheer up again. I hope he will too, in time.
I’ve attached the first and the last track, but you can listen to the full album here.