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by Will Rivitz

4 Aug 2016


BOYO’s hazy rock attacks psychedelic with the force of a good shoegaze maelstrom, waves of guitar letting off sparks every which way. “Moombah” is a good example of that merger, pop sensibilities informing everything from the tone of the guitar solo to the song’s verse-chorus progression. It’s surprisingly simple: mix catchy chord progressions with legions of guitar, and you’ve got yourself a winner. Given how good “Moombah” is, this seems to be a solid formula.

Control releases August 26th.

by Will Rivitz

4 Aug 2016


Elise Davis’ “Finally” is as straight-ahead as a rock song can come. Not only lyrically—the song extols the virtues of unplugging and living in the moment—but sonically as well: simple chords ring for days over rock organ and sturdy bass. Davis’ plain voice fits in well with the rest of the song, carrying through until a distorted solo takes it away. At the end of the day, rock ain’t so bad.

by Will Rivitz

4 Aug 2016


Pop music has been tending towards a breathy, bassy ambiance ever since SFX Entertainment’s stranglehold on the radio abruptly slackened a couple years ago, and EXES has come onto the scene to wrest her share of the pie from the powers that be. “Like You” is what some cantankerous music writers might snarkily dub a “millennial anthem”, detached affection playing out over aqueous vocal sampling snares that hang in the air for ages. It’s passionate in the downcast way of Tove Lo or Kai, an anthem to youth in the frosty way youth are meant to identify with. Hollow, chilly, and full of love, “Like You” fits the pop landscape of 2016 to a T.

by Will Rivitz

3 Aug 2016


“Blues Jumped the Rabbit” is blues in its most collaborative mode, a song built directly off the work of those who came for. The lyrics and composition trace back at least to the 1920s, the song has been recorded more than a few times in its past, and — most importantly for this particular iteration — James Williamson’s legendary guitar is augmented by the multi-instrumental lushness of Petra Haden. It’s a gloomy, slow song, but it’s one full of instrumental light, borne aloft by crystalline piano and echoing guitar. In other words, it captures the many facets of blues well.

by Will Rivitz

2 Aug 2016


Trapdoor Social’s indie rock is the pop-sensitive kind, music which embraces prospective mainstream appeal instead of giving it an elitist cold shoulder. “Sunshine” is all monster hooks and full-blown chorus, snarled guitars warping anthemic vocal harmonies. Stylistically, it’s pretty close to the Arctic Monkeys, but Trapdoor Social have dropped a little bit of the band’s sneering edge in favor of a more sun-baked garage rocker a la the Raconteurs. Rock-wise, it ticks all the conventionally-used boxes which keep the genre pumping, and pop-wise, it taps the production and memorability necessary to embed itself in the style’s good books.

//Mixed media

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"No Dollars in Duende": On Making Uncompromising, Spirited Music

// Sound Affects

"On the elusive yet clearly existential sadness that adds layers and textures to music.

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