1. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs (Merge Records)
2. Darker My Love - Alive As You Are (Dangerbird Records)
3. Autolux - Transit Transit (TBD Records)
4. Walking Sleep - Measures (self release)
5. Pavement - Quarantine The Past (Matador)
6. Red Cortez - In The Fall EP (self release)
7. Helen Stellar - If the Stars Could Speak, They Would Have Your Voice... (self release)
8. Joanna Newsom - Have One On Me (Drag City)
9. Lost In The Trees - All Alone In an Empty House (Anti)
10. School of Seven Bells - Alpinisms (Vagrant Records)
Again Arcade Fire dominated. I really love the song "Suburban War", it's a beauty. Getting to know the new Darker My Love album and I really admire their attempts to stretch in a new direction. Seeing it performed live was a real boon as it was so tightly performed it made the album even better. Also obsessing on the Autolux album, Transit Transit, which is moody and lugubrious in all the best ways.
Walking Sleep were guests on a radio show I was also on, Simon Cardoza's S'imon Quay!, and I listened to their recent full length CD, Measures, and it was fun to get back to it again. It's a beautifully produced album.
I know this is completely backwards, but I'm just discovering Pavement now, though I've seen them mentioned over and over as influences on so many of the current bands I love, most prominently, Pinback and Silver Jews and too many others to go into here. I'm going to their show at Hollywood Bowl and figured this was the time, so I bought their recent compilation, Quarantine the Past, which is 24 of their best songs, gorgeously remastered, and I love every one of them. This is a revelation. I was completely ignorant of their existence when they were recording and performing and I wonder if I would have liked their music then. If I'd heard it, would I have gotten back into rock and roll 15 years before I did? I'll never know.
Red Cortez and Helen Steller have been playing out recently and so their music is back on my mind, and I never tire of either album. Finally coming out of my Joanna Newsom Have One On Me fixation...until she comes around again. Still into Lost In The Trees orchestral rock and gave some spins to School of Seven Bells' Alpinisms to decide about their upcoming show.