January - The Month @ Pop Headwound (Part 2)

Here’s your chance to catch up with some of the tracks we thought were really great this month.

MP3: David Vandervelde - Nothin' No

Vandervelde does his best at impersonating him some T. Rex, and fools just about everyone who’s never heard them. This song proves to be its own electric warrior, full of jagged, crunching guitars, and witty phrases.

MP3: Viking Moses - I Will Always Love You

Moses strips this sometimes overbearing song down to its essence, finds the heartache and makes it his own. Said the Gramophone said it best, “Some feelings can only be expressed in a few particular phrases; some things need to be said over and over, while they still hurt”.

MP3: Somme - Massless

Words aren’t necessary when you can carry this much weight on your shoulders.

MP3: Maria Taylor - Lost Time

Taylor returns this March with Lynn Teeter Flower. This delicate, beautiful folk song represents one side of her talents, as the album mixes folk with something more electronic. She’s at her best here, just that vulnerable voice floating in and out of some simple guitar chords and a lilting piano on the chorus.

MP3: Bright Eyes - Tourist Trap

What do you call home when you don’t recognize it anymore? The percussion sounds like footsteps on a gravel road, somewhere dusty and flat. Conor Oberst sounds tired of the city’s cement walls, imagines them crumbled, and leaves to find his love and bring her home, wherever that is. His heart may be an open door, but the home it leads to has been torn down.

MP3: The Swimmers - Goodbye

This one is like Damien Jurado‘s “Honey Baby” meets A.C. Newman. Just a really pleasant pop song that rolls along under bright skies as it tries to say its goodbyes.

MP3: Andrew Bird - Heretics

Bird is set to return on March 20th with Armchair Apocrypha, his debut for Fat Possum. Bird spoke to Billboard last year while working on the album. He said the songs are “big and spacious, with long, stretched out phrases, a sense of large, open air. But it's also really concise. I'm trying to keep it to 10 songs, but short is pretty hard to pull off when you're trying to create space”.

MP3: Casiotone For The Painfully Alone - Graceland

What if the Mississippi Delta was shining like a Mac Power Book?

MP3: The Shins - Sleeping Lessons

I have to say that I’m really pretty disappointed in Wincing the Night Away as a whole. The Shins have never changed my life, nor are they favorite of mine, but I was kinda hoping they’d do something remarkable with so much time between albums. Instead they trade their hyperactive songs overflowing with hooks for something more “mature” and “slick“ and “blah”. “Sleeping Lessons” kicks off the album right though. It starts off dark and moody, with a winding chorus, before building up to a blast of power chords that finally relieve the tension.

MP3: The National Lights - Midwest Town

The Dead Will Walk, Dear is a debut album filled with dark little murder ballads and ghost songs. It’s a stunningly cohesive record filled with this and 9 other songs equally as beautiful and secretive.

MP3: Ted Leo & the Pharmacists - The Sons Of Cain

Ted sounds reinvigorated on this one, frantic yet self-assured. He’s in his comfort zone, the band is prime - all punk rock fury mixed with some Who-like power chords - and it all comes on like nothing we’ve heard from him in years.


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