beacon

out february 5th via ghostly international

the collaboration between thomas mullarney iii and jacob gossett has proved fruitful; as beacon, the brooklyn duo has slowly transformed an art institute friendship into a tour de force of murky, nocturnal soundscapes laced with seductive vocals and fastidious drum beats.  on escapements, beacon’s second full-length, mullarney and gossett double down on the nuances of their compositional integrity to turn in a final product packed with a strong awareness of form, deeply-buried grooves, and subtle about-faces.

escapements are the mechanisms inside clocks tasked with regulating time; while immediately analogous to the metronomic pulse of tracks like “preserve” and “better or worse,” the term refers more to the duo’s exploration of the finite, the inevitability of decay.  the opening line of “running out” (“what if my luck run out / in these games we play”) and the abrupt shifts in dynamics and tone on tracks like “backbone” and “still” find beacon harnessing this relative brevity, using it both to their immediate advantage and as a thematic tool for ambiguous introspection.

beacon’s insatiable appetite for bending new textures and structures to fit their needs resonates so deeply across escapements.  brooding, r&b-influenced palettes may be the duo’s bread and butter, but it routinely transcends a two-dimensional plane with purposeful countermelodies (“preserve,” “backbone”) and an adroit use of polyrhythm (“running out,” “l1”).  when an a-b structure threatens to become mundane, mullarney and gossett return to pop conventions or flirt with a theme and variation.  when an electronic timbre has become all but uniform, they infuse the soundscape with guitars (“escapements,” “still”) or veer off into the uncharted church organ territories of “you’re wandering.”

escapements is a soundtrack for the nights you spend in the company of another.  its lurking sub-bass throbs like a second heartbeat, working in tandem with percussion to propel the perpetual union of gossett’s aqueous arpeggios and mullarney’s stratospheric sighs.  tycho drummer rory o’connor drops by to add an organic touch to a handful of tracks, augmenting the duo’s intimacy while taking care to never overstep any boundaries.  it’s all these subtle flourishes and enhancements together that make beacon’s work so invigorating, from the sultry, stuttering hook on “im u” through to the infectious melody that bounces across “preserve.”  escapements is an album near impossible to put down; go pick it up.

doks robotiks 1

photo courtesy of the artist

minneapolis-based, eau claire-bred jazz-rap collective doks robotiks sounds like what would emenate from a cocktail shaker filled with equal parts danny brown and takuya kuroda: frenetic, volatile energy refined with silky smooth overtones.  the octet’s debut full-length has been percolating for nearly a year-and-a-half, but now it’s arrived; you can stream their self-titled album here ahead of their release show at 7th street entry tonight.

in the music video for the album’s lead-off single, “pavane,” guitarist rob hagen settles into the director’s chair to capture a monochromatic rendition of the group’s dynamic, juxtaposing the precise, rapid-fire delivery and interplay between gumm and konstant with textured full-color crowd footage of the entire doks ensemble during the track’s hook.  check out the clip for “pavane” below.

mt. si garret curtis

photo courtesy of garrett curtis

los angeles trio mt. si claims members from three venerated area acts – superhumanoids, kisses, and classixx – and the results speak for themselves.  their debut ep limits is the byproduct of purposeful, methodical collaboration, with each of its four tracks showcasing the intimate knowledge of a decidedly singular brand of electronic pop.  on “baby you’re the best,” the ep’s swirling finale, bathes sarah chernoff’s indelible sigh in a bevy of synth textures and frenetic percussion while allowing the main hook to resound deeply.  limits is streaming in full in advance of its friday release via cascine; take a listen to “baby you’re the best” below.

 

satchmode

photo courtesy of graham burwell

if you’re staring down ferocious blizzard-like conditions or bed-ridden with flu-like symptoms (or both), los angeles duo satchmode can provide a brief respite.  their newest single, “don’t give up on me,” pairs an affinity for dreamy synth overtones with an unrelenting pulse that’s analogous to the urgency of the song’s central thesis.  take a listen to the track below.

GoshPithPressShot1

photo courtesy of the artist

gosh pith will drop off their second ep, gold chain, at the end of the month via b3sci records. the duo’s amalgam of r&b, trap, and indie rock proves particularly effective in their latest single, “k9,” a slow-burning, bass-heavy jam with a purposeful half-time vocal hook delivered over the chorus.  the track’s music video dropped today; in it, director shane patrick ford follows a young love triangle that experiences some seedier sides of detroit’s underground scene before heroically escaping.  check out the clip for “k9” below.

beacon 1 chad kamenshine

photo courtesy of chad kamenshine

brooklyn duo beacon are prepping their sophomore full-length, escapements, out this friday via ghostly international.  after loosing a pair of indelible singles over the past few months, thomas mullarney iii and jacob gossett have shared the album’s title track, a composition defined by liquid synth pads that slowly dissolve into a seductive, nocturnal texture coated with mullarney’s consonant sighs.  take a listen to “escapements” below.

love hunt.jpg

photo courtesy of the artist

corona, california trio love hunt occupy a space on the final frontier of unabashed, feel-good pop music.  the band’s latest single, “hilltops,” distills the central tenets of their ethos into a four-minute funk groove, replete with an infectious summery aesthetic that feels much more necessary than it does premature.  “hilltops” is the first song lifted from love hunt’s forthcoming ep, it’s been funk; take a listen to the track below.

photo4u

photo courtesy of the artist

grand rapids indie poppers dear tracks are set to release a new ep, soft dreams, on february 26th via furious hooves and track and field records.  the title track of the quartet’s forthcoming effort is also a fitting finale, with aqueous guitar textures trickling through a hazy, c86-indebted soundscape that serves as a beautiful composite of dear tracks’ lush aesthetic.  with dreamy vocals that sit just right in the mix, it’s hard not to get lost in this one.  take a listen to “soft dreams” below.

 

derek barber odell hussey

photo courtesy of odell hussey

derek barber’s latest single as perhapsy, “all my soul swallowed,” has reverberated throughout this month here at the dimestore.  barber recently teamed with director madeline kenney to make a music video for the track; in the clip, a technicolor-clad barber emerges from a lean-to in search of an adequate power supply deep in a west coast forest.  the video becomes even more eccentric as the song progresses, with a strange ever-present bust and a rather volatile mug of liquid juxtaposing the aurally melancholic vibe.

“all my soul swallowed” is culled from perhapsy’s forthcoming album, me tie-doughty walker, out march 3rd.  check out the music video below.

unnamed

photo courtesy of the artist

newcomer johan leans on little more than various percussive instruments and a breathy lead vocal to make his inaugural statement, but it’s a memorable one nonetheless.  on “danger_us,” johan weaves brief melismas through minimalist drum beats and piano chords as he spells out a sultry narrative laced with primal allusions.  take a listen to his impeccable debut single below.

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