Here are three albums and an EP released last year that I liked.
I discovered this band and their first album, Her Brilliant Fifteen, from a recommendation that was on a now forgotten music blog. I like how they blend an indie rock sound with what might be considered folk instruments. I was super-pleased to hear that hey had made another. My favorite tracks on this album are “30 Lives“, “Walk On Water“, and their cover of the Joy Division classic, “Love Will Tear Us Apart”. They seem to be following Rule #2 of Indie Rock Success with their choice of a cover song.
You have probably heard Santogold’s music, but didn’t know it. Her songs have been in several commercials and tv shows. Her sound is a melding of 80’s pop, dub, and garage rock. You can also hear remnants of her time singing for the punk-ska band Stiffed. My favorite tracks are “Lights Out” and “LES Artists“.
A friend of mine sent me a link to the video of the song “5 Years Time” earlier this year because of its nod to Wes Anderson’s films. I liked the song, but forgot about it. A few months later, I purchased a ukulele, and when hunting for rock bands the use a uke I rediscovered them.
I stumbled across the music of Ema and the Ghosts (Ema is the only member, so the rest of the band are “ghosts”. Get it?) a few years ago on MySpace. She had a vocal & uke cover of “Folsom Prison Blues” posted at the time that I thought was amazing. I had been hoping she would release something for a long time. She self-relased this EP, and because of that it isn’t widely available. In fact, I haven’t been able to find it at all. But, she does have plenty of songs on MySpace and YouTube, so have a listen/look. I like her cover of “After Hours” by The Velvet Underground.