On the Record: Earl Sweatshirt, Neko Case, Travis and more

By Bill Chenevert
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Aug. 28, 2013

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Earl Sweatshirt

Earl Sweatshirt
Doris
(Columbia)
Sounds like: The Odd Future teammate’s not even 21 yet, but his sophomore’s a solid-ass piece of hip-hop with a mostly spoken, confessional delivery.
Free association: With friends like Tyler and Frank, it’d be hard to fuck it up.
For fans of: Hodgy Beats/the Internet + Danny Brown, Mellowhype, pseudo- juveniles.

 

 

Neko Case
The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You
(ANTI Records)
Sounds like: The hero of indie lady rock rides again! Her fourth true LP is full of her unreplicated snark, humor and wordplay, plus that searing, enchanting voice.
Free association: She plays with gender. She’s smart. She’s independent. Praise her.
For fans of: New Pornographers x Lissie, Loretta/Emmylou/Hank/Wanda, women of NPR.

 

 

Pure X
Crawling Up the Stairs
(Acephale)
Sounds like: The Texas trio’s second is a solid, if slightly unexpected, set of dark and characteristically languid yet noisy distorted guitar dreamscapes.
Free association: This is not for high-energy party times, but maybe weirdo date night.
For fans of: Woods x Kurt Vile + Deerhunter, Sparklehorse/drowsy Modest Mouse.

 

 

No Age
An Object
(Sub Pop)
Sounds like: Lo-fi duo (mostly) from L.A.’s fourth is a variety pack of post-punk stretching between thrash and plaintive moody ambience, and the yield is solid.
Free association: Sometimes you don’t get a band’s buzz, and sometimes you do.
For fans of: Bass Drum of Death + No Joy, Young Prisms x Mikal Cronin.

 

Julia Holter
Loud City Song
(Domino)
Sounds like: On her first Domino release, Holter gets a little more refined but maintains her quirky, airy and wispy delicacy, nailing her brand of dreamy whisper.
Free association: Went with her because Juliana Barwick was way, way snoozier.
For fans of: Joni/Julee Cruise + Brian Eno x Grouper/Zola Jesus, beguiling weird girls.


 

 

Travis
Where You Stand
(Red Telephone Box)
Sounds like: The seventh from the Scot rockers is the first in a while, and it’s a lovely, easy listen with classy vocals and simple but sophisticated instrumentation.
Free association: I used to love this band so hard in high school—they’re sensitive!
For fans of: The Verve x Coldplay before they got shitty; Big Star/Keane, twee Scotsmen.

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