In no particular order except that which they come to mind.
- Kvelertak - Kvelertak. Metal is usually a harder sell than most other genres for me, mostly because the mainstream stuff is pretty tedious, and the more technical stuff is often just a little too abrasive. There are few bands that appeal to me in the same way as Tool do, being listenable but also progressive enough to interest me. This Swedish group are partway between Black Metal and 70s Hard Rock, and the riffage of the latter element makes it easier for me to get a handle on the throaty vocals. Energetic, raw, and catchy as hell.
- Jethro Tull - Heavy Horses. When I was younger, I had some pretty poor misconceptions about Jethro Tull (And about Led Zeppelin, for some reason); I guess I was confusing them with Jethro, the dreadful West Country 'comedian'? I don't know. At any rate, I thought their music would be a bland country rock that wouldn't appeal to me at all. Ironically, Heavy Horses is about country life in England, but it's anything but bland. I put this on in my Dad's car when I was over in Ireland recently, and it's pretty great.
- Bat For Lashes - Fur and Gold. I've had Natasha Khan's second album for a couple of years, but only just got around to picking up her first. Really, I should have got this back in 2006 when Joel and I saw her (and her band) playing in Koko. I read my LJ entry about that yesterday, and I actually thought she was called 'Back To Lashes'. Close enough, I guess! Anyway, the album's great. A little more naïve-sounding than her second release, maybe, but no less moving.
- Zomby - Dedication. James ordered me to get this! It's nice, atmospheric minimal Dubstep. He sold it to me as melodically amazing, but I'm not so sure about that. It has its moments, but most of the time it just feels rather melodically unfocussed. Which isn't to say I don't like it! I'll be putting a good bit more time into it, because while there a number of tracks that miss the mark slightly, there are more that get it pretty right.
- Hail Mary Mallon - Are You Gonna Eat That?. Aesop Rock's new project. I often feel like I'm pretty much alone in my love for him, preaching to the mildly disinterested, but he's really great, honest! This album's no exception, with Aes sharing the vocal duties and some of the production legwork with Rob Sonic (With DJ Big Wiz on scratches), there's plenty of stylistic variety. Opens with the completely stomping 'Church Pants', which exhibits a more mature sounding production than I've heard from Aesop Rock in his solo stuff. Hip-Hop album of the year? God, I don't know.
- Daft Punk - Discovery. Yeah, I'm fashionably late to the Daft Punk party, all showing up wearing a cheap cardboard robot helmet. I figured I'd pick this one up, and it didn't really disappoint. I find it pretty much impossible to listen to 'One More Time' in today's Autotune climate, but the rest of the tracks are pretty well up my alley, all vocoders, synth voices and sample-madness. It often feels like this kind of sample-driven Electronica became slightly unfashionable in the mid-'00s, but it still works for me. It's everyone else that's wrong.
Stuff that Syn does
"It's almost like I did it myself, mum!"
- What I've Been Listening To