Lapalux - "Flickering (feat. JFDR)" (Singles Going Steady)

Photo: Ozge Cone

Mike Schiller: Lapalux does the smart thing here and gets out of the way for the vaguely Björk-esque vocals of JFDR, for whom this song is a lovely showcase. Backed by scattered pops and hisses over the simplest of beats and a slowly-layering tapestry of synths, JFDR doesn't give us melodies so much as thoughts, a few words at a time, keeping us interested but never quite bothering with a proper hook. It's lovely, the way a moderately populated sidewalk in the art district is lovely. [7/10]

John Garratt: Having made his mark on both Ninja Tune and Brainfeeder, electronic music producer Lapalux doesn't need guest artists to help make his material shine. And while I agree with a certain YouTube commenter that the music of "Flickering" is therapeutic, JFDR's overly breathy Björk impersonation is anything but. Left as an instrumental, this track could have had a stronger impact, a snug little backdrop for your own gloom and mood purposes. With JFDR taking the mic, this delicate piece of music gets hijacked to exhibition island where barely pronouncing your tortured words reigns supreme. In other words, let the music do the talking. [6/10]

Adriane Pontecorvo: Everything glides on "Flickering", from JFDR’s impossibly smooth voice to the echoing loops backing it. It’s a therapeutic song, spherical and soft. The synths are repetitive, giving JFDR room to maneuver, and while it’s not an obvious standout, it’s an impeccably crafted piece. [7/10]

Steve Horowitz: Soothing and elegant music for a troubled world. The singer's voice pulls you into a trance with suggestions of love and even something more spiritual. That said, the gossamer tug is easy to break. When somebody asks me to relax my tendency is to tense up. Different strokes for different folks -- I'll sit this one out, but the musicianship is easy to appreciate. [6/10]

SCORE: 6.50

Cover down, pray through: Bob Dylan's underrated, misunderstood "gospel years" are meticulously examined in this welcome new installment of his Bootleg series.

"How long can I listen to the lies of prejudice?
How long can I stay drunk on fear out in the wilderness?"
-- Bob Dylan, "When He Returns," 1979

Bob Dylan's career has been full of unpredictable left turns that have left fans confused, enthralled, enraged – sometimes all at once. At the 1965 Newport Folk Festival – accompanied by a pickup band featuring Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper – he performed his first electric set, upsetting his folk base. His 1970 album Self Portrait is full of jazzy crooning and head-scratching covers. In 1978, his self-directed, four-hour film Renaldo and Clara was released, combining concert footage with surreal, often tedious dramatic scenes. Dylan seemed to thrive on testing the patience of his fans.

Keep reading... Show less

Inane Political Discourse, or, Alan Partridge's Parody Politics

Publicity photo of Steve Coogan courtesy of Sky Consumer Comms

That the political class now finds itself relegated to accidental Alan Partridge territory along the with rest of the twits and twats that comprise English popular culture is meaningful, to say the least.

"I evolve, I don't…revolve."
-- Alan Partridge

Alan Partridge began as a gleeful media parody in the early '90s but thanks to Brexit he has evolved into a political one. In print and online, the hopelessly awkward radio DJ from Norwich, England, is used as an emblem for incompetent leadership and code word for inane political discourse.

Keep reading... Show less

The show is called Crazy Ex-Girlfriend largely because it spends time dismantling the structure that finds it easier to write women off as "crazy" than to offer them help or understanding.

In the latest episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the CW networks' highly acclaimed musical drama, the shows protagonist, Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom), is at an all time low. Within the course of five episodes she has been left at the altar, cruelly lashed out at her friends, abandoned a promising new relationship, walked out of her job, had her murky mental health history exposed, slept with her ex boyfriend's ill father, and been forced to retreat to her notoriously prickly mother's (Tovah Feldshuh) uncaring guardianship. It's to the show's credit that none of this feels remotely ridiculous or emotionally manipulative.

Keep reading... Show less

Here comes another Kompakt Pop Ambient collection to make life just a little more bearable.

Another (extremely rough) year has come and gone, which means that the German electronic music label Kompakt gets to roll out their annual Total and Pop Ambient compilations for us all.

Keep reading... Show less

Winner of the 2017 Ameripolitan Music Award for Best Rockabilly Female stakes her claim with her band on accomplished new set.

Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones

Love You To Life

Label: Self-released
Release Date: 2017-08-11

Lara Hope and her band of roots rockin' country and rockabilly rabble rousers in the Ark-Tones have been the not so best kept secret of the Hudson Valley, New York music scene for awhile now.

Keep reading... Show less
Pop Ten
Mixed Media
PM Picks

© 1999-2017 All rights reserved.
Popmatters is wholly independently owned and operated.