Really From – Really From – Nov 18, 2022
Really From is the self-titled and third full length LP from exhilarating Boston quartet that sees the band merging free jazz, math rock, and emo into a record that dives deep into the ethos of cultural barriers, particularly within one’s family. Really From is comprised of Chris Lee-Rodriguez (guitar, vocals), Sander Bryce (drums), Michi Tassey (keys, bass, vocals) and Matt Hull (trumpet, flugelhorn, trombone). Many tracks, particularly “Try Lingual,” feature vocal performances from both Rodriguez and Tassey, where they discuss shared tribulations having immigrant parents and the struggles of learning multiple languages. This album is unbelievably impressive from a technical standpoint, but the emotion and the vulnerability in the songs are what really makes it special. It’s only begun to grow on me, and I will be revisiting Really From for a long time.
Favorite Tracks: “Apartment Song” ; “I’m From Here” ; “In the Spaces”
- Will Lewis
Weyes Blood - And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow - Nov 18, 2022
In April of 2019, Weyes Blood would forever change the course of her career by dropping Titanic Rising, an album that was dedicated to raising awareness to climate change and highlighting the soul crushing expectations that movies/films give to those who watch it. This ended up being her most critically acclaimed project to date and most loved amongst her fans. Later, it was announced that Titanic Rising was only the first installment in a sequence of albums that Weyes Blood will use to convey her unique worldview. In September of 2022, Weyes Blood had announced that she would be releasing the second installment of this trilogy which is titled And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow. Now we finally have this project, and in short, this album is masterful and probably as good if not better than her previous project. Her voice alone is enough to drag any curious listener into the heart of this LP, however, you start to notice trivial things about the production that truly makes this album remarkable. There are little things about the album that make it questionable to its predecessor (like how the track "And In The Darkness" is only fourteen seconds long), but at the end of the day there is simply no denying that Weyes Blood created a grandiose, ethereal, masterpiece in the realm of art pop and baroque pop. Since she had described Titanic Rising as her means of searching for the silver lining to the apocalypse, her new installment showcases humanity entering the next phase, the aftermath of these tragic events. She describes And In The Darkness, Hearts Aglow as humanity's inevitable reaction to such a drastic event: how we will find ourselves in a period of complete and utter dismay, how we are all so connected and yet so isolated from each other at the same time, how we will all be stumbling through the darkness. However, as depressing as it may seem, we will venture out of this hell through the embodiment of our own spirits. Although it may seem like Weyes Blood had watched one too many “the indomitable human spirit” tik toks, she has further proved that this album subsequently conveys her view of people, as well has her own wellbeing in our modern-day society, a theme which is analogous to the somber and dark hypotheticals of her albums. Right now, I think we’re witnessing the evolution of a generational artist. Her sheer growth in the better part of six years has been nothing short of crazy and I cannot wait to see what she will convey in her final installment of this outstanding trilogy.
Favorite Tracks: “It’s Not Just Me, It’s Everybody” ; “Grapevine” ; “God Turn Me Into a Flower” ; “Hearts Aglow”
- Gerrit Notch
DEADLETTER – Heat! – Nov 18, 2022
The infectious revival of groovy, spoken word post-punk does not seem to be going away, as London based band DEADLETTER have arrived with their first EP. For fans of the genre, I don’t think the band is achieving anything fully unique with this release, but I truly enjoyed it. Front man Zac Lawrence prances of the choppy guitar riffs and snare-heavy percussion with lyrics and style similar to that of Andrew Savage, and each song features choral vocals at some point, another possible ode to the Parquet Courts. Being comprised of just 5 songs, there’s not much to be said about the project as a whole. Each song offers a similar emotional and instrumental pallet, but don’t simply blend together. Littered with dark humor, Lawrence’s songwriting is what sets this group apart from the countless other bands with similar sounds. This is a fun little project that I am happy to have stumbled across, and I look forward to the full length.
Favorite track: “Zeitgeist”
- Will Lewis
BROCKHAMPTON - TM - Nov 18, 2022
At the start of 2022, BROCKHAMPTON abruptly announced that they were breaking up as a group. The reasoning of why the collective decided to suddenly end things remains partially unknown, however something that everybody knew was that tensions were exceedingly high between the members of BROCKHAMPTON, as the pop rap group stayed dead silent on social media up until the last month or so. The first official announcement that their fans received came on October 27th when they announced that their “last album,” The Family, would be dropping on Thursday, November 17th. On that morning, many fans tuned in at 8 a.m. EST to listen to The Family and were rightfully confused with two chief aspects of the project: how it was essentially a Kevin Abstract solo album, and that it was a measly thirty-five minutes. Later in the day, their confusion would settle down after BROCKHAMPTON would announce their actual last album, TM, dropping at 12 a.m. EST. The final album from BROCKHAMPTON has essentially torn the fanbase as it’s received very mixed reviews across Twitter and Instagram. The thirty-seven-minute-long album consists of more pop than it does hip hop, with each song being very impressive in performances and especially production. The songs expand to include genres like alternative r&b and even a little bit of jazz. With how much I can praise each individual song on TM, there isn’t really a sense of direction or correlation from track to track. This has led many to believe that instead of putting their differences aside to make a final, well-rounded project, the group decided to throw in a bunch of leftovers from ROADRUNNER: NEW LIGHT, NEW MACHINE, their 2021 record. I think overall, many people can agree that the rollout for both The Family and TM has been abysmal. The falling out of the group was so confusing that they decided at last minute they would pull a 2016 Frank Ocean and drop a surprise album behind the one they conjured up to get out of their contract. That alone is hilarious considering that we’ve witnessed BROCKHAMPTON’s entire career before Frank Ocean might release another album. Overall, the collective has revolutionized the sound for both alternative hip hop and pop rap. They’ve made some of the best songs of the past decade and have inspired various artists to do the same. Their importance and influence as a group will live on as nothing short of spectacular, and I think at the end of the day, TM truly highlights that.
Favorite Tracks: “FMG” ; “NEW SHOES” ; “MAN ON THE MOON” ; “CRUCIFY ME”
- Gerrit Notch