Audio Learning Center were once members of grunge-era misfits Pond and Sprinkler, bands that disappeared before anyone could notice. “Stereo,” pairing anthemic crescendos with Chris Brady’s endearingly fragile vocals, may just right that wrong.
The chin-stroking ambience of O!A!L!’s 2003 material (see “Ex’s and
Ho’s Oh’s”) makes way for a more diverse palette of bristling pop and sprawling sonic gems in ’04.
Elastic, eccentric punk-wave with some really rewindable lyrics. Plus they’re from Regina, which makes me giggle.
Versus’ Fontaine Toups, perhaps the most underrated, indie female bass player, debuts her new band, carrying on where Versus left off.
Wild-eyed garage romps from the super duo of John Atkins (764-Hero) and Joe Plummer (Black Heart Procession, Caustic Resin).
Artful (but not artsy) soundtracks for the thinking person who still wants to walk away humming a tune.
Wonderfully lonesome lyrics delivered over vast, taut soundtracks.
I won’t add myself to the list of those who have failed to describe TVOTR’s sound in words. That’s why they invented MP3s…
Coldplay might sound like this if they didn’t sound so damned much like Dave Matthews.
A sampling of favorites from 2003. Beautiful, haunting, and so NYC.