By Rob van Alstyne
By Zach McCormick
By Emily Eveland
By Jack Spencer
By Michael Madden
By Reed Fischer
By Emily Weiss
By Emily Weiss
Given all of the turmoil and turnover brewing in this crew over the last couple of years, it's a wonder that 50, Yayo, and Banks were able to put a triumphant face on their less-than-auspicious return. Also, somewhere, Billy Joel's throwing up in his mouth a little bit—or maybe a lot, depending on what was behind the hotel mini-bar.
I don't think it's heresy to slot this Brooklyn duo into the twee wing of whatever genre the Atlas Sound/WZT Hearts/etc. axis represents; you know, that sort of undersea primordial tinkle that either swells into a deluge or just flirts prettily with the idea. Anywho, the Places—who flirt prettily, if you're keeping score at home—deal Mary Pearson's upbeat, baby-duckling-cute chirp into the mix.
Every year I stumble upon a few dynamite noise compilations. So far, 2008's coughed up just one, but it's a doozy; Corrosive Fumes collects shots of sonic Drano from a ton of bat-shit twisted Eastern European unknowns. This standout from Idlness Distribution simulates sustained electrocution a bit too well, with two startling minutes of lacerating power electronics and masticated vocals that'll take hair off your chest.
"I Am a Girlfriend"
Naw, dude, you're not. You seem to have some deep-rooted issues with the fairer sex (among others); might wanna talk to a therapist about that, 'kay?
Ambient psych, or psychedelic ambient? Either way, this track is more or less like getting lost in a rainbow-hued incense cloud, surrounded peripherally by a cadre of humming angels you can't see—they sound so near that you'd just swear you could reach out and ruffle those gigantoid wings, but you can't.