May 11, 2011
New Music: Wye Oak, Chad VanGaalen
I've also been enjoying Chad VanGaalen's latest (fourth, I guess) album, Diaper Island. It appears to be tied together by themes of domestic life, but no worries: there's still plenty of weird stuff going on. Musically, however, it's significantly more well-behaved than his previous albums. That's not necessarily a bad thing, especially for those of us who loved Women's Public Strain (produced by Chad last year). Most of the press surrounding the album has emphasized its straight forward rock aesthetic, but Chad's been toeing that line as long as he's been putting out records. He's reported to have submitted over three albums worth of post-Soft Airplane material to Sub Pop for this album, so we'll have plenty of b-sides to look forward to. The record is out May 17, and is currently available for streaming via Paste. I've devoted a lot of time to Chad's previous records, so I'm not going to get ahead of myself and call this his best; then again, I'm not going to pretend that Diaper Island isn't awesome, and I'm sure I'll be posting on it again. The song below is a real stunner. This ain't Bob Dylan's "Sara."
I should probably also mention some of the big guns.
Yes, Panda Bear's Tomboy makes good on the hype, and, personally, I think it betters 2007's Person Pitch. While we're speaking of albums that improve on their predecessors, I've also been enjoying the latest effort from Seattle's Fleet Foxes (Helplessness Blues) and tUnEyArDs' (yes, the mixed cases are intentional) second album, w h o k i l l. In the coming weeks, I'll be looking forward to new music from the Antlers, Wild Beasts, and Gang Gang Dance.