It’s that time of the week again. Another week, another plethora of great new releases to be heard, but where do you start? How will you sort through the countless number of average new indie pop records? How will you find enough new records to keep you occupied so you won’t have to listen to your friend’s new EP of all trombone based Limp Bizkit covers? Well, here are five new releases, compiled in a nice little list, that may have slipped under your radar. Hopefully, it’s enough to keep you sane until next week.
Jess Joy – Patreearchy (Joyful Noise)
One half of the now defunct Moon Honey, Los Angeles musician Jessica Ramsey is back under the new name Jess Joy. Patreearchy, produced by Greg Saunier of Deerhoof, plays as an Avant Garde mix of fragmented pop songs and electronic interludes. With such an eclectic mix of sounds the one true constant on the record is Ramsey’s eccentric voice. That being said there is much more to this record than Avant Garde pop instrumentation and Ramsey’s vibrato laden voice. Ramsey provides her own insight into what it means to be a woman in this day and age, as well as her thoughts on religion and growing up in the Bible Belt of Louisiana. Patreearchy pushes the boundaries of art-pop music and stands as a bold and risk taking solo debut record.
Patreearchy is out on Joyful Noise.
Milk – Milk III (Flying Nun Records)
In September of 2020 titan of the New Zealand underground music community Reuben Samuel Winter passed away. Milk III was recorded in 2019 and has just now found it’s way to being released, in all it’s glory, by the legendary Flying Nun Records. The record is not just a fantastic experiment in a variety of eclectic genres, but a lasting testament to Reuben’s creativity as a musician and songwriter. Recorded at Red Bull Studios in Auckland, it’s Ruben’s unique take on recording that sets this record apart from the rest of his discography. Countless overdubs of layered distorted guitars and synths make the LP a unique and punchy take on Reuben’s sound. Milk III is a culmination of a life of creativity and not a record to be missed.
Milk III is out on Flying Nun Records.
Cory Hanson – Pale Horse Rider (Drag City)
After many years serving as the front man of Los Angeles garage rock band Wand, Cory Hanson returns with his second solo record Pale Horse Rider. The record is much softer and more introspective than fans of Wand might expect, but it shows Hanson finding his voice as a singer songwriter. The sound of this record drifts into a slightly new territory for Hanson, mixing his patented psychedelic lullabies with a new brand of soft desert rock songs. Recorded in the Mojave, the record unsurprisingly evokes images of desert road trips and soft gusts of wind. The ever present lap steel guitar drifts one song into the next with a country twang. It’s a comforting and familiar record. One that can remind you of home and the road simultaneously. Much like the desert Pale Horse Rider strays the line where beauty and harshness intersect, and that’s what makes it the most unique release in Hanson’s discography.
Pale Horse Rider is out on Drag City.
The Armed – Ultrapop (Sargent House)
The Armed have always been a group of mystery. Since their inception in 2009 the Detroit collective have gone through painstaking effort to keep their identities a secret. This led many questions and conspiracies to be thrown around. From producer Kurt Ballou being a sort of puppet master of the band to a major corporation using them as an advertising ploy and everything in between, The Armed still remained an enigma. The release of their latest LP Ultrapop has been an unmasking of sorts for the group. Along with the release of the record came a music video featuring eight members of the band credited by name. Although their antics often distract from their music the new record shows the band at the full force of their muscular punk driven sound. With over nineteen contributing musicians every track is filled to the brim with noise driven guitar, chaotic percussion, and twinkling synths. Everything about this new record begs the question, what next?
Ultrapop is out on Sargent House.
Nick Hakim & Roy Nathanson – Small Things (NYXO Records)
Long time Onyx Collective collaborator Nick Hakim teams up with Onyx collective saxophonist Roy Nathanson for this neo-psychedelic jazz release. Recorded part remotely the record combines Nathanson’s poetry and saxophone with Hakim’s spacy pop songs. The pair’s talents blend together seamlessly to paint a dreamy portrait of New York City. The record is evocative of Small Change era Tom Waits and beat poetry but reimagined with a gloomy and psychedelic aura. It’s a love letter to the saxophone, which is ever present wailing in the background. This is a record built on atmosphere more than anything else, and there is plenty of that to go around.
Small Things is out on NYXO Records.