Posts Tagged ‘ Dream Pop ’

Air France – No Way Down

Air France – No Way Down

6 songs, 22 minutes long

This is an EP I have meant to review for a long time. It is probably my favorite 22 minutes of music and something that everyone should give a listen to. Air France is a group from Sweden that has gained respectable popularity for a band with only 2 EP’s. No Way Down is their second effort and while their first EP, On Trade Winds, was fantastic, No Way Down is, dare I say, perfect. The only good way I can describe Air France is beachy; not beachy like party pop music, instead melancholy and relaxing. The album is dreamlike, from the repeating “Sort of like a dream. No. Better.” to the dance worthy basslines to the horns and piano that fill the EP. Even though this is a disappointingly short album, every moment on it is worth listening to over and over again.

I can’t recommend this album enough. Its something I will be listening to for a long time, and I cant wait to see what else this group can come up with in the future.

Get No Way Down at Amazon

Mildew

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Fleeting Joys – Occult Radiance

Fleeting Joys – Occult Radiance

11 songs, 46 minutes long

Occult Radiance is the the second release (2009) by Fleeting Joys, a promising new shoegaze band, which is something to be said for a genre that hasn’t had much new material since the mid-nineties. Their first album, Despondent Transponder sounded like a direct sequel to My Bloody Valentine’s essential, groundbreaking, and final release Loveless. A great album in its own right, it lacked innovation, especially since My Bloody Valentine hasn’t put out an album in so long, one would expect a new group picking up the shoegaze banner to innovate and/or find their own sound. This drawback is exactly why Occult Radiance is, in my opinion, a much stronger release. Occult Radiance still has the shoegaze essentials: almost-whispered vocals awash in noise, and beautiful guitar-effect landscapes, but Occult Radiance is more clearly organized than either Loveless or Despondent Transponder, and most importantly, is much darker. If you are a fan of My Bloody Valentine, do yourself a long-awaited favor and pick up a copy of Occult Radiance.

Amazon has this available as DRM-free mp3, but do yourself (and the band) a favor, and order this one directly from the band site so you have the full-quality CD.

Skeeter

Sin Fang Bous – Clangour

Sin Fang Bous – Clangour

12 songs, 42 minutes long

Hailing from Reykjavik, Iceland, Sin Fang Bous’ (the solo project of Sindri Mar Sigfusson from the band Seabear) first album, Clangour, is a catchy and original Dream Pop album. The album has the distinguishing Icelandic feel similar Sigur Rós but with a much more Pop-esque and lively sound. This is an album that will be repeating in your head for days to come after just one listen. It doesn’t contain much of a synth sound like other dream pop bands; instead the album relies a lot more on guitars, violins, and pianos (along with electronic effects) to produce a fairly upbeat (though not generally dance worthy) and joyful album. Not many dream pop or indie pop bands catch my attention like this album has. It stands out from bands with similar tags for reasons that are hard to put into words. It is an album that has to be listened to in order to hear why it’s so good; I can’t imagine any review doing this album justice.

Clangour at Amazon

Mildew

Flotation Toy Warning – Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck

Flotation Toy Warning – Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck

10 songs, 72 minutes long

Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck is one of my most recent discoveries, even though it was released back in 2005. The band, Flotation Toy Warning, made this single release and then vanished from the face of the earth, although their last.fm page hints at the possibility of a new album coming out this year. All I can say about that possibility is that I hope it’s true. Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck sounds like something Sigur Rós might have written if they had Beirut as their singer, wrote lyrics in English, and played the theremin. The album sounds familiar, even though it’s not, and it is haunting and beautiful, full of strings and operatic vocals. Frankly, I would have loved this album without it, but when I first heard the theremin kick in halfway through the album, I was completely sold. Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck is a hidden gem. This is an album of unsung genius, and a must-listen.

Bluffer’s Guide to the Flight Deck is available on Amazon.

Skeeter

Deastro – Mind Altar EP

Deastro – Mind Altar EP

11 songs, 40 minutes long

Randolph Chabot Jr is the man behind Deastro, a Dream Pop project out of Detroit. Mind Altar is his newest album and arguably his best. It is an album that is full of synths and interesting electronic sounds which give the album, as a whole, a dream-like feel. Chabot’s vocals, which are sometimes hard to understand, add a lot to the album, regardless of meaning. He has a unique voice that fits in perfectly with the dream pop genre and he has created an album that is worth checking out for any fans of electronic music.

Buy Mind Altar at Amazon.

Mildew