30-Second Reviews: The Joy Formidable, Ra Ra Riot, ABC’s "The Taste" and More

By PW Staff
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 1 | Posted Jan. 30, 2013

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On the Record

Toro Y Moi

Anything In Return

(Carpark Records)

Sounds like: South Carolinian Chaz Bundick’s third shows growth and good change; less chill-wavey, but more dance pastiche and inspired retro-learned funk.

Free association: Chillwave is done; he knows what’s what and is getting electric.

For fans of: Neon Indian/Young Magic, Koushik + Caribou, modern psych funk. (Bill Chenevert)


The Joy Formidable

Wolf’s Law


Sound like: Excellent trio of Welsh anthemic guitar pop that feels inspired by Sleater-Kinney (via lead vocalist/guitarist Ritzy Bryan) but tempered by Stars.

Free association: At no point on this record do they sound emo—an accomplishment!

For fans of: Yeah Yeah Yeahs + Arcade Fire, Kooks/angry Rilo Kiley, female thrash. (B.C.)



We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic


Sounds like: Great sophomore from L.A. ‘burbs natives and BFFs who got inspired by Dig! to play as many instruments as possible and mix it with classic rock

Free association: Hard to believe this is only nine songs. It feels like so much more. 

For fans of: Zeus + Ducktails + the Stones, Sic Alps x Pink Floyd, buddy rock. (B.C.)


Ra Ra Riot

Beta Love


Sounds like: The Syracuse-born band’s third is a departure. Gone are hushed strings and baroque chamber pop; now it’s synths and polished electronics.

Free association: Tired of dwelling in obscurity, they polish commercial jingles.

For fans of: Vampire Weekend x Toyota, Passion Pit + Chrome, Owl City/Apple. (B.C.)


Esben and the Witch

Wash the Sins Not Only the Face


Sounds like: The goth creepfolk Brits’ second full-length is a pretty calmly weird collection of dark, vaguely unsettling and hushed ambient witchy rock.

Free association: These aren’t like The Craft witches—more like The Witches of Eastwick.

For fans of: Björk x Austra + Bat For Lashes, Kate Bush in Practical Magic. (B.C.)


Adam Ant

Adam Ant is the BlueBlack Hussar Marrying the Gunner’s Daughter

(BlueBlack Hussar)

Sounds like: The 58-year-old artpop legend and ‘80s icon’s first new solo LP in 13 years is long, all over the place, a little demo-y but not expected or weak.

Free association: There are zero tracks that sound remotely like “Goody Two-Shoes.”

For fans of: Dexy’s Midnight Runners/DEVO x Suede + T. Rex, Brit pop icons. (B.C.)


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1. Karen said... on Jan 31, 2013 at 12:39PM

“Clearly, the author of the Ideal Husband review missed the exposition given earlier. The sin of his youth referred to in this quote is one of the selling of a state secret, NOT one of homosexuality - implied or otherwise. Yes, Wilde was living in a repressed society and dealing wih his own sexuality and this quote can easily be construed as some sort of statement with regards to this, but to imply that Ian Peakes, who's character must wholly love and cherish his wife for the plot to make any sense, should convey a latent homosexual love for Goring seems to me to be unhelpful and, in fact, would be most decidedly detrimental to the telling of the story within the confines of this particular production.”


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