New Sounds 02/18/2022
Thanks for swinging by the site before heading into your long weekend. Presidents don't really deserve their own holiday IMO, given that they're all pretty shitty, but I'll take a three-day break whenever I'm offered one. I plan to bolt to the Coast right after work today to enjoy some old growth and ocean, and to appreciate these new sounds in a vintage Sou'wester trailer. Hopefully you're able to find some moments of calm this weekend as well.
Oh, and a quick sidebar: know that I'm really looking forward to listening to the new Beach House and Hurray for the Riff Raff albums, too, and loved Big Thief's DNWMIBIY last week. Just sorta figured that since those releases are on a lot of folks' radars already, I don't really need to highlight them here on DC. Much (if not most) of my favorite music is widely-loved, so I try to carve out just a little corner of space on my site for albums you might not always find here.
Cool. That's all. Enjoy these four gems!
Kit Grill - Spirit (Primary Colours) - Kit Grill was an artist I was unfamiliar with prior to learning about this release. It seems that Spirit is the London-based creator's quick follow-up to his 2021 album, Fragile. Though the two albums were written and produced in the same time frame, they could not be more different from each other. Fragile is a fast-moving, retro-tinged dance party, but Spirit holds soft and spare ambient pieces.
Pan•American - The Patience Fader (Kranky) - Mark Nelson offers up an album of minimalist guitar instrumentals - 12 tracks treated with varied tones and atmospheric textures. Composed during the first "pandemic summer," themes of mourning and isolation carry through The Patience Fader, and the collection of songs forms a deeply moving meditation.
Rosales - Woven Songs (Home Normal + Polar Seas Recordings) - Ian Hawgood and Brad Deschamps have teamed up again under their Rosales moniker, and hey, it's a label collaboration too! Woven Songs plays best uninterrupted from start to finish, because as the title suggests, a sonic thread connects each track. Typically, I'm not one to utilize earbuds when in nature, but this album might soundtrack a beach walk this weekend.
ulla - Hope Sonata (Longform Editions) - Wind instruments and strings flow in and out of this beautifully lo-fi, seemingly improvised piece, and a siren is even allowed to cut through the patchwork recording. Ulla Straus has been a favorite artist of mine recently, so you can imagine my excitement when I learned that she would be a featured artist on the latest round of Longform Editions. Actually, speaking of LE...
Bonus music: The first "Longform Edition" I heard was Botany's Fourteen 45 Tails back in February 2020. I just sort of stumbled across the track and didn't know anything about this mysterious label featuring strange album artwork. But then I listened to this episode of the Sound Propositions podcast. You should check it out on your own (and the other episodes too), but to summarize it crudely, LE was borne out of the founder's desire to slow down and take in extended compositions. In a world where music can be accessed and clicked through rapidly, LE offers an alternative method to consume and appreciate music. Deeper listening, in a sense. The label offers quarterly drops (I think?) - four new artists, four new longform pieces, every three months. To name highlights would be futile, so I'll just link the Bandcamp page here and you can check some out for yourself. Personally, besides the aforementioned track by ulla, I am excited to sit with Gavilán Rayna Russom's 71-minute (!!!) symphony this weekend.