Anticipated follow up albums always come with a burden. You automatically want to love the new album by the band you've obsessed over for years. Yet sometime these bands move in directions you hate. Or even better, they make new music beyond your expectations. Here's a list of new albums by artists I've loved for a while now and how they stand up.
SWAN LAKE- Enenymine: I love their first album, Beast Moans, so much, but since its release all three members have less then wowed me with their mainstay projects. Wolf Parade's new album is good, but Sunset Rubdown, Frog Eyes, Destrpyer and the New Pornographers all put out lackluster new records. Still good but not as exciting as I hoped. So I was sort of dreading the Swan Lake name being watered down with a new humdrum album. But I was not disappointed. I mean how can these three indie stalwart multi instrumentalists/songwriters disappoint. Another album of quirky indie pop songs that will always be there when you need them. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE NEW ALBUM.
PINK MOUNTAINTOPS- Outside Love: Well I knew this would be good. The second Black Mountain record was entrancing, and the last Pink Mountaintops 7 inch from about a year and change ago, never really left my turntable. I guess I'm too biased to think they would suck it up, but these songs are terrific. Sean is sort of the indie rock version of Neil Young. I want to play all three of these PM records for everyone I know, cause they are vastly underappreciated. Maybe his Canadian counterpoints ( Swan Lake, Broken Social Scene, Arcade Fire, et al) overshadow his public relations, but not his songwriting. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE NEW ALBUM.
RIVERBOAT GAMBLERS-Underneath the Owl: These kids always played a version of lo fi garage punk that never ventured into the annoying territory of the Warped Tour and emo. More akin of lesser know Dirtnap and Goner records bands than Bad Relgion or NOFX. But I guess they finally wanted their chance at stardom. This is one of those punk records that apes a good pop album, meaning you have ballads, anthems, mid tempo songs and thrashing heartbreak closers all present. This would be fine if R Gamblers had the talent to expand their narrow but great formula of garage punk, but they do not. It's really disappointing that one of my fav punk bands threw a junk record at me. I suppose fans of Against Me and such will love this album, but any music fan past their teenage years won't. Too Bad.