So far, 2010 is looking like a great year for indie and alternative rock.
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best indie albums 2008
First up, the collective of musicians who have collaborated with members of Animal Collective is ever-expanding, and our next featured artist is just one of dozens. Sore Eros is the musical brainchild of Robert Robinson and has seen a number of different incarnations over the past decade.
In 2004, Robert moved to L.A. and, through a mutual friend, began to collaborate with Ariel Pink, who had recently signed with Animal Collective’s Pawtracks label. That led to Robinson being recruited by Animal Collective's Panda Bear (Noah Lennox) to accompany him on his British tour preceding the release of one of the best albums of the last decade, Lennox's debut solo release, Person Pitch.
"I met Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) about 12 years ago," Robertson told IRC. "We were both going to school in Boston. We kind of made up this band called The Hunted with a few of our friends. We only recorded a few songs, and those tapes are now lost (thankfully)....For the Panda Bear tour, I was supposed to play in Ariel Pink's band, but he got deported, so Noah was kind of enough to let Gary War and I to play in his band. I never heard any of the songs (neither did anyone else) that he was doing for that tour. Those songs would later become Person Pitch."
Upon the completion of the tour with Panda Bear, Robinson reignited his Sore Eros project. During the process of writing and recording his solo effort, Robinson collaborated with high school friend Adam Langellotti to produce the brilliant debut LP, Second Chants, released in February of last year via Shdwply Records.
Contributors to the album also include Kurt Vile, Gary War and Andy Tomasello (aka, Eat Cloud). Second Chants received wide critical acclaim, mostly on indie music blogs; here's an excellent review of the LP from TinyMixTapes.
There are so many terrific, even gorgeous, songs on Second Chants that it was a bit difficult to decide which to include without posting half of the LP's songs; that said, we strongly recommend getting a copy of this debut. We are almost sure that more people - especially Animal Collective/Ariel Pink/Panda Bear fans - will likely appreciate the work of Sore Eros.
Robinson has been working on the follow-up to his debut LP, and has been kind enough to share a new demo track, "Giraffe's Kiss," exclusively with IRC. He has also revealed exclusively to us that the new album title will be Know Touching, with hopes of releasing it sometime in the next month via Shdwply Records.
Robertson described to IRC the production of Know Touching: "We are still trying to grasp the
vibe for this record. Second Chants was a very inner record. Most of the songs were improvised and written in a very subconsciousness flowing way. I took most of the sketches that seemed to have interesting melodies and built them from there...Adam Langellotti came up with some really amazing orchestrations, and the sketches actually became songs."
"We recorded Second Chants in Pro Tools, where there was unlimited tracking and we went kind of crazy with layering and effects, creating that "chant" effect...with Know Touching, we are taking a different approach (by) recording...on 1/2'' 8-track reel-to-reel. This is limiting our use of layering and effects and forcing Adam and I to concentrate more on the actual song writing itself. The album is much more tangible."
From the yet unreleased new LP:
"Giraffe's Kiss" - Sore Eros from Know Touching (2010)
"Fooled Me" - Sore Eros from Know Touching (2010)
From the magnificent debut Second Chants:
"Lips Like Wine" - Sore Eros from Second Chants (2009)
"Whisper Me" - Sore Eros from Second Chants (2009)
"Smile on Your Face"- Sore Eros from Second Chants (2009)
Purchase Second Chants via InSound
Sore Eros on MySpace
The Melloncollies are the latest in a hallowed line of Brooklyn-bred quintets to unfurl the witty sonic flag and punch back: yes, pop can be daring. Their debut album, Goodbye, Cruel World, is abrasive, edgy and full of sheen. Another Brooklyn band poised to breakout in 2010.
"Simple Naive Someone" - The Melloncollies from Goodbye, Cruel World (2009)
The Melloncollies on MySpace
Formed in Brooklyn in 2007, and founded by former members of Philadelphia's Asteroid #4 and psych-pop ensemble Three Four Tens, the band Himalaya is making its hallucinogenic mark on NYC with its signature sound, and a self-titled debut that packs a psychedelic punch.
Employing deep drones, ghostly melodies, and spacey, noisy waves of guitar, Himalaya calls to mind their influences - from Spiritualized and Spaceman 3, to the Jesus and the Mary Chain and Pink Floyd. Himalaya's self-titled debut is a collection of nine songs that embody the band's distinct voice, unrelenting style, and sonic spaciousness.
"Melt Away" - Himalaya from s/t debut (2009)
Himalaya on MySpace
Matias Aguayo’s "Rollerskate" is an exercise in how catchy a simple, repetitive hook can be. Out on Kompakt Records from his latest release, this tune is a body-moving beast, a dance floor hit at heart with a chill-out backbone. Fans of El Guincho or LCD Soundsystem will likely dig this track.
"Rollerskate" - Matias Aguayo from Ay, Ay, Ay (2009)
Matias Aguayo on Facebook
Stay tuned, we have oodles of music to share with you all in coming weeks. In the meantime, you can also browse through the In Dee Mail series to pick up a lot of great tracks from talented artists and bands you probably won't hear about anywhere else.
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