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Thursday, Apr 3, 2014
by PopMatters Staff
Thus Owls' Turning Rocks is a study in contrasts, bringing together organic and high-concept elements intricately.

Turning Rocks, the upcoming full-length by Montreal-Stockholm outfit Thus Owls, is a study in contrasts. The husband-wife team of Simon and Erika Angell brings together organic and high-concept elements in a way that coheres intricately on Turning Rocks, striking a heady balance between warm instrumentation and a stylish veneer. Thematically, Turning Rocks conveys a sense of nostalgia and patiently dramatic moods, its songs based on stories told to Erika Angell by her grandmother about the small Swedish village where they lived.


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Tuesday, Apr 1, 2014
by PopMatters Staff
New York's Challenger shares a new song of poptronica goodness. The band's crisp, melodic synths and hook-filled choruses invoke a millennial, Yankee version of OMD.

“How Terrorism Brought Us Back Together is that delicious taste of Challenger‘s up-coming full-length, releasing May 27th. Group producer/songwriter John Ross tells us, “I’m glad I got to sing with my friend Ian from Inner Outlaws. It’s one of my favorite songs on the album. I’ve been writing new songs lately that are headed more in this direction so I’m excited to share it. I think It’ll be a fun song to play live, too.”


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Tuesday, Apr 1, 2014
by PopMatters Staff
Careful's "The World Doesn't End (Part II)" masquerades as a lo-fi pop tune before it fully emerges as a haunting chamber pop piece.

Eric Lindley (a.k.a. Careful) is releasing his fourth full-length album, The World Doesn’t End, on April 22nd via Circle Into Square. With a background in LA’s subculture of electronics hackers and experimental artists, Lindley has immersed himself in the theories of artistic creation. The result is a pleasingly intellectual approach to creating music that satisfies the head and the heart in equal measures.


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Monday, Mar 31, 2014
by PopMatters Staff
Don't let the title fool you: Tapioca and the Flea's "Take It Slow" is a brisk, catchy dance-pop number.

Premiering on PopMatters, “Take It Slow” is Southern California dance-pop act Tapioca and the Flea‘s contribution to a split 7” compiled by Red Bull Sound Select for Record Store Day (April 19, 2014). Just don’t let the title fool you, since “Take It Slow” is a brisk, catchy synth-driven number, a combination of old-fashioned pop-minded songwriting and a state-of-the-art vibe.


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Monday, Mar 31, 2014
by PopMatters Staff
The delicate, gossamer arrangement of Like Swimming's "Let Go" floats along like puffy white clouds on a warm summer day.

Like Swimming is a Swedish trio formed in 2012 out of a previous group, You Say France & I Whistle, but this is not a young band. Claes Carlström, Ida Hedene, and Petter Wesslander have been writing music together for seven years and it shows, as the group’s music is gorgeously understated, fully developed and sophisticated. “Let Go” is a beautifully composed and performed song that highlights these points. Like Swimming tells us that “with ‘Let Go’, we’ve tried to find a blend of danceable electro sounds and a comforting acoustic feel, since we feel in between those two worlds in our daily life. The song about slowing down, standing still, not moving. So please listen to it while waiting for the next bus, while sitting down, or while sleeping on the job. It’s a series of still life paintings, but without the apples and pears.”


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