Music

Jim Putnam & Mickaël Mottet: Jim Putnam & Mickaël Mottet

Radar Brothers' Jim Putnam and Angil's Mickaël Mottet teamed up for this eponymous, collaborative album, and the results are pretty impressive.


Jim Putnam and Mickaël Mottet

Jim Putnam and Mickaël Mottet

US Release: 2014-05-12
UK Release: 2014-05-12
Label: We Are Unique!

Radar Brothers' Jim Putnam and Angil's Mickaël Mottet teamed up for this eponymous, collaborative album, and the results are pretty impressive. This record’s 10 songs sound like a musical conversation between the two. Putnam sings Mottet's compositions, and Mottet sings Putnam's, and their pair of bittersweet, whispery vocals makes them sound almost like musical twins. Much of the album sways through dreamy layers of sound, like the ringing guitars and distant synths of "Let Be", the space-rock echoes of "Ethnology Is a White Man Thing", the isolated stillness of "Down in the Ranks", and the subtle expanse of closer "What It Feels Like". These songs are well crafted, often beautifully executed, and not without some dark humor and charm (check out "That Other Song" for evidence). These songs sound very much in the wheelhouse for both of these singers, but these push the limits of their gauzy aesthetics in interesting ways and, in talking to each other through music they give the listener a lot to eavesdrop on. This is a patient yet rewarding record, one not to be overlooked.

7

The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti (By the Book)

With discussions of characters like Leon Ray Livingston (a.k.a. "A-No. 1"), credited with consolidating the entire system of hobo communication in the 1910s, and Kathy Zuckerman, better known as the surf icon "Gidget", Susan A. Phillips' lavishly illustrated The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti, excerpted here from Yale University Press, tells stories of small moments that collectively build into broad statements about power, memory, landscape, and history itself.

Susan A. Phillips
Books

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Indie pop in 2009 was about all young energy and autumnal melancholy, about the rush you feel when you first hear an exciting new band, and the bittersweet feeling you get when your favorite band calls it quits.

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