Nineteen-year-old singer-songwriter Kirsten Izer is the kind of young indie musician that Gen-Xers wish there were more of these days. The New Jersey native plays the kind of loud, distorted indie pop that was commonplace 20 years ago, where fuzzed-out guitars mesh impeccably with effervescent melodies.
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Unlike 99 percent of Canadians, Jenny Ritter was actually raised in a log cabin, but she’s far from a Canadian cliché. Raised by artistic parents—one an opera singer, the other a ballerina—she’s gone on to pursue a career in the arts herself, namely as a folk singer-songwriter. Her new album raised By Wolves will be released on 4 September, and as you hear on the new track “Been So Kind”, she’s open to bringing in a little more of a rock influence as well, for some well-executed dynamics.
Chris Gerard: This fantastic cover of the gospel/blues standard by Fred McDowell first appeared in 2011 on the Mojo Magazine curated Sticky Soul Fingers, an R&B tribute to the Rolling Stones’ Sticky Fingers album. The recording is getting another lease on life as part of the upcoming Daptone Gold II compilation, and it’s great that more people will have the opportunity to hear it. Naomi Shelton is a national treasure that too few people know about. Her deeply soulful voice captures the essence of the song, and the funky retro accompaniment is tight and groovin’. Daptone Records usually delivers the goods, and this is no exception. [9/10]
Nathan Stevens: The pairing of Jamie xx and Talabot is an odd one, with xx obsessed with the more ethereal while Talabot completely works in the tactile. The combination works here though, thanks to Tabalot’s mutation of the original DNA. Now clocking in at over seven minutes, “Loud Places” turns into a marvelous slow burn that never bursts, but keeps smoldering over clanking percussion and slowly floating synths. It’s hard to compare it to the album version, as the brother tracks are completely different beats. [7/10]
John Bergstrom: It’s characteristically pretty and heavy on atmosphere, with some nice dynamics too. But it doesn’t hold together as well as some of their previous efforts. The chorus, in particular, sounds clunky and plodding. Enough to whet the appetite for their upcoming third album, at least. [6/10]