Dream Pop

REVIEW: Wild Nothing - Nocturne

There was a time not long ago when you'd hear a great song like "Shadow" from Wild Nothing's sophomore record Nocturne either on your local college radio station or on the Dave Kendall-hosted version of MTV's 120 Minutes, sandwiched in between songs by Kitchens of Distinction and the Church. Wow,” you'd think, “what a great jangly little ‘alternative’ song; since I like the Smiths AND the Sundays I should go to a ‘record store’ and buy a ‘CD’ of their music.

Today, though, you likely heard about Wild Nothing on the internet because of their fantastic debut record Gemini, streamed or downloaded their stuff (legally or illegally) and thought, man, they really capture that C86 sound I've read about in the history books.

The point is in recent years many bands have tried to emulate that mid-to-late 80s ethereal brand of music that would eventually become dream pop. There are many good ones, but none have hit the nail on the head quite as precisely as Wild Nothing.


REVIEW: Beach House - Bloom

Since their 2006 eponymous debut, things haven’t changed much for Beach House.  They still peddle in immense amounts of reverb, elementary drum machines, Alex Scally’s trilling guitars, and Victoria Legrand’s soaring vocals.  But why should it change?  Artistic “growth” is overrated when you create beautiful work.  AC/DC managed to keep the hits coming until the early Eighties without changing any of its elements.  On the other hand, bands like Interpol keep mixing up the beans, cheese, and meat of its music to diminishing results. 

Thankfully, Beach House’s “Bloom” fits into the AC/DC mold.  The band grows a little by stripping away some of the haze away from the vocals, improving production, and turning up the guitars.  But this is more tinkering of the Beach House RV, rather than a new engine or even a different muffler. 


Daily Listen: Therapies Son - Touching Down

Sometimes you’ve just go to thank your local record store guy. The discovery of this track was a completely fluke, but that’s what happens when you abandon your tastes to fate and simply ask somebody what you want to listen to. Try it sometime.

Taken from the band’s (which is actually just 19-year-old Los Angeles resident Alex Jacob) debut EP, Over The Sea, the dreamy surf pop buzz of this track is a great example of how to do this type of music right (because when it’s done wrong…zzzzzzzzz) and should make a nice addition to the playlists of the impending Summer.

Fans of Wavves and Best Coast should especially take note because this will be directly up your alley. 

 

Therapies Son - Touching Down

The entire EP is on sale now for $3.79 over at Amazon, so if you like this you know what you've gotta do.

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Review: Papercuts - Fading Parade

 

I first heard Papercuts at a friend’s house on a tiny record player. HE first heard of them from the guy in the record store where he picked up 2009’s “You Can Have What You Want”. Where THAT guy heard of them I have no idea. I also have no idea exactly when and where this genre of music known as “dream pop” started happening, but I’ll tell you what: I sort of dig it.

Admittedly I don’t think I’ve ever sat down and spend some real quality time with the bands previous album, but I have always kind of liked it. It’s generally pleasing and provides a nice relaxed/chilled ambience without actually having to pay attention to it. Which is not to say...

 

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