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Things Unseen Music – Futurebright
Purty melodies and intricate compositions fill this 5-track EP – the only weak spot in here is vocals as they’re almost always placed at the very end of the song and don’t seem to add much to anything/come off as afterthought (in fact the whole thing probably would’ve worked better as an entirely instrumental suite as heard in “Stabilize Me”)

 
Valeska – Cadenza for Val / Nocturnal Parade
The “folk” tag used here is terribly misleading – there is nothing folky about it or at least I don’t hear it.
With that said, however, its a wonderful release – reminds me of some of 70s prog rock with its complexity (think banjo, glockenspiel and piano in the mix), yet that complexity never gets in the way of melody and both tracks are very unique, each in its own way

 
Liam – Back to Burgundy
No relation one of Gallagher brothers, I assume – this is high quality folk pop/rock a-la Fleetwood Mac with super catchy melodies/choruses and dual male/female harmonies

 
Deep Hole – Feed the Birds
This 3-song EP is as noisy and sludgy as the tags suggest and yes, there are also melodies buried beneath the mayhem. Think naked aggression of post-punk, AmRep etc etc
The potential is definitely there, but those songs seem to lack distinct songwriting or anything that would make listener go for the second spin

 
SEA Split w/Weedwolf
If you ever mourned the loss of Isis (not the terrorist organization, of course), you may find some solace in the fact that SEA picks up where Isis left off – same atmosphere, same heaviness that characterized some of Isis work is to be found here. Far from being a mere clone, though, Sea also bring plenty of ideas of their own to the table and thus their side of the split is a pleasure to listen to.

 
Happy Little Clouds – Shift
Full disclosure – I watched this band practicing at the basement few years ago and while they seemed OK it was hard to predict that anything like “Shift”, their debut, would emerge eventually.
This record have “massive radio play” written all over it – it seems that everything from production to vocals to lyrics was given a maximum thought, a rare occurrence these days. While garage rock moment in the spotlight has long passed, “Shift” is still a fine continuation of the legacy of bands like White Stripes and everyone looking for an honest rock’n’roll record wouldn’t be disappointed after picking it up.

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Mario Epstein

sick finds!!

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