Nashville, TN based Natural Child plays the kind of scuzzy bar rock that took a left turn out of 70s Rolling Stones, The Faces, and David Bowie (think Exile on Main Street, “Stay With Me” and Ziggy Stardust) and “8 AM Blues” might be one of their best singles to date. The first song off of their fantastic 2012 LP For The Love of the Game (which boasts a quite NSFW album cover) , the no frills fuzzy guitar riffs and the hell if I care vocals make this one of my favorite songs for the summer. I’m also throwing in “Ain’t Gonna Stop”, the song that closes out the album with a raunchy take on the classic “Johnny B. Goode” riff. This is the kind of stuff you wish early Rolling Stones R&B sounded like, Natural Child has a bright future ahead of them, and these are perfect songs for those nights where all you remember is the smell of whiskey and smoke on your clothes from the night before.
“We Can’t Be Beat” is the first song off of The Walkmen’s Heaven and fittingly spare and introductory. Hamilton Leithauser begins his half besotted, half morose croon with solitary guitar accompaniment. It’s a song that wouldn’t feel out of place on the credits of a Wes Anderson movie, as little eccentric parts come into the fold, dense layered vocal harmonies, a quirky picked-up rhythm, a constant cinematic sense of an unsure build-up, the potential for something great to happen, but a profound sense of not knowing when. Fortunately, that works perfectly for the album, as it picks up from there. A must buy in the albums of 2012.
A great melody, Beatlesque harmonies, as well as what may be the best use of a fiddle in music this year come together in glorious matrimony on “Easy Come Easy Go”, the seventh song off of the new Great Lake Swimmers album, New Wild Everywhere. Be sure to listen to the wonderful amalgamation as you learn new words for saying marriage. Music can be good and educational too!
New Wild Everywhere was released on April 3rd, 2012 on Nettwerk Productions. You can find the vinyl at Insound and the digital version on iTunes.
In todays music, psychedelia usually falls victim to being too out there (see chillwave, electronica, trance) or an homage with little originality. Here though Spiritualized makes the most of taking up the mantle of psychedelic rock that The Beatles left in 1968 (The lack of a statement with the album cover is a fitting callback to The Beatles own White Album) with “Little Girl”, there are beautiful strings that haven’t felt so delightfully strange in an arrangement since “I Am The Walrus” and a great rousing chord progression that belies the song’s downcast nature. A tongue in cheek piece of songwriting worthy of Lennon.