(Artwork care of Karen Ramsay (www.karenramsay.com), profile photo care of brianlackeyphotography.com)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

April Singles

From rooted to fully unmoored, April has some great singles, all releasing this month.

Busy Signal - Reggae Music Again (from Reggae Music Again)

Dancehall master Busy Signal releases his new album, Reggae Music Again this week. The track list makes it clear that he's embracing the whole of reggae, from the moody dub of Kingston Town to the soulful pop reggae of Come Over (Missing You). Fireball plays to his strength with some dancehall delivery over some sweet reggae horns. Still, the classic rock steady feel of the title cut hits the perfect sweet spot. The first verse sets the tone, "It's been a long, long time now, since we've grooved together like this." Reggae Music Again doesn't try too hard and the effortless groove is perfect.

Claude Violante - For You (from Claude Violante EP)

Claude Violante's voice is dreamy as she breathily declares her love. The electro pop groove is a little down tempo for the dance floor, but the double time electronic drums make up for that. A healthy dose of Annie Lennox cool adds to Violante's appeal. The lyrics are simplistic, but the backing track offers enough sonic details to keep the track interesting.

Dandy Warhols - Sad Vacation (from This Machine)

I haven't had a chance to listen to all of This Machine yet, but Sad Vacation seems both familiar and new. Courtney Taylor-Taylor's casual vocals still can't decide whether they're cool or bored, but the Dandy Warhols have toned down the irony and put their energy into the music. The guitars are strong enough to expand the synth pop sound the band has played with in the past. They fill in the edges of the song with swells of string noise while the relentless beat drives forward. Trippy yet focused, Sad Vacation is driven by shroom tea and a double shot of espresso.

Ty Segall & White Fence - Time (at Room 205)

Ty Segall and White Fence (Tim Presley) have teamed up on a new album, Hair. They featured their opening track, Time, on Room 205. The opening of the song sounds like a warm up, but soon enough, the track takes off into the psychedelic realms of the garage. The loose '60s psych-pop sound gets the vocal harmonies, the room echo, and guitar jangle just right. The bridge slides into a heavier acid jam. Noisy abandon reigns supreme.

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