Bedroom Calling, Chromeo & The-Dream: 1
So this is generic
These vocals are probably the most obnoxious thing about it, they just sound like some irritatingly mediocre R&B singer. The mix of funk and electronic/dance in the production is fine, I don’t know, I guess I just feel like I’ve heard so many songs in my lifetime that sound exactly like this.
Get Out, CHVRCHES: 2
Don’t kill me, I don’t blatantly dislike CHVRCHES or anything like that. They have a few fun songs and I’m not going to have a problem if they’re playing in the background or whatever. My problem is they’re so much more of a singles band than an album band that it’s almost like they’re physically unable to make anything that holds my interest for more than 5 minutes. This song’s lyrics are obnoxiously vague and pointless. The smooth vocals and polished synths next to the distortion in the production are nice and everything, but there’s nothing unique about this whatsoever, so what’s to come on a full length project? Oh boy.
If You Ever Need to Talk I’m Here, The Streets: 2
This song’s pretty much dominated by spoken word/a very straightforward style of rapping, and it’s kind of cool how prominent the lead singer’s accent is in his voice. I actually like the content of these verses, but I think what it really suffers for is the fact the hook’s not sticky, like, at all; it’s actually actively annoying. Still, if you’re going to give this song praise for anything, make it the fact it’s so blatantly off kilter.
CEASE AND DESIST, Alice Glass: 2
Pls don’t get me wrong here; I love this song’s intent. It just felt like a total sonic overload with the intense/dynamic drums, overwhelming distortion and pitched vocals. It’s kind of excessive, and since it’s only 2 minutes it feels like a brief slap in the face.
My Boy (Twin Fantasy), Car Seat Headrest: 2
This isn’t necessarily a song I’d jump to choose from Twin Fantasy to release as a single. It just feels like a half-baked fragment of a song and doesn’t do much for me at all when it’s isolated as one, but hey whatever.
Things Will Be Better in Hell, Street Sects: 2
Yo, listen, before I explain this, I wanna say I LOVE Street Sects. Like, so much. Coming from someone who doesn’t listen to metal nearly enough, End Position is one of the most enjoyable albums I’ve ever come across in the genre. But this doesn’t really do anything for me. The drums sound kind of awkward and the production is way too murky and sporadic for it to flow. Not sure they’re pulling off this exclusively industrial sound that well. I also can’t help but feel like the vocals are a little awkward? They sound unconfident, like they’re not really sure how to fit into the track. Rightfully so, because they don’t.
Bite Down Hard, Street Sects: 3
This feels a little more organized than Things Will Be Better in Hell since there’s a consistent pattern of screeching sounds in the production, but it’s still fairly unkempt (especially closer to the second half of the song). & these vocal performances are equally awkward and uncomfortable. :/
No Wave, IDK & Denzel Curry: 3
Denzel’s verse is easily the highlight of this track of me; it’s clever as hell and his flow is (SO) impressive as always. IDK’s performance here is fairly great and everything too. I guess what ruins it for me is the production, which seems kinda average. I like the synthetic pianos but the rest of it just sounds like an ordinary trap-style beat.
Cute Thing, Car Seat Headrest: 3 or 4
Y’all know I’m a sucker for any lyrics that directly attack music journalists, and “He died in an explosion / Of mixed media and poorly written reviews / And some stammering drunk who tried to tell him how good his shit was” is hands-down the best moment of this song. Other than that, I do like the organic synths with the wailing guitars and percussion. Not terribly impressive, but fairly enjoyable.
Lil Mufukuz, Dabrye & MF DOOM: 4
Okay, the idea behind this song is utterly hilarious (compares shitty rappers to kids that DOOM has to raise/keep track of), verses are hella clever as to be expected. Nice spooky/eerie left-field beat with these elongated synths that flow in and out. Pretty much 2 minutes of DOOM doing what he does best.
Ohsh, Jean Grae, Quelle Chris, Hannibal Buress: 4
All of these MC’s styles work perfectly together, it’s honestly a dream collaboration. Love the production as well, the sporadic/cluttered clicking sounds work nicely with the wailing synths. There’s a perfect amount of bass & drums for the minimal production. Hannibal’s verse is totally ridiculous but it’s pretty fukcing funny and probably the best part of the lyrics, even though they’re entertaining the whole way through.
Thugz Cry, Joey Bada$$: 4
Really like this rendition of When Doves Cry; pretty clever take on the song. Nice verses, Joey sounds great as always, not much more to say.
This is My Town/My Love for You is Undying, Mark Kozelek: 4
This is typical Mark Kozelek, really. The only thing that seems to take away from his recent stuff for me is how rambly it is, and often a lot of his lyrical detours have no clear point. Which seems to connect with some people, but unfortunately doesn’t do much for me at all. It sucks, because there is something absolutely enchanting to me about his music on the whole.
I love the lingering, sorrowful guitars and few subtle tempo changes here. It’s a set of imagery to do with his hometown, a recurring source of inspiration for his songwriting. Songs like this have a weird way of making me wish I was back home driving through all of the unassuming/unimpressive areas that have developed so much meaning to me from living next to them for so many years.
Maybe walks the line of being too rambly, but not enough to ruin the songs for me.
Definitely looking forward to this new record.
Only Acting, Kero Kero Bonito: 5
God, what a song??? Where do I even start? The distorted guitar layers in this track are perfect; the bass and drums with it make the buildup into the chorus so epic. The random glitching throughout is a fantastic touch. Her super high-pitched, adorable voice sounds great next to these elements too. It’s definitely a (very) different sound for KKB but I’d be psyched if she ever did a full-length effort with it. I love it.
THOUGHTS ON YLT EP TRACKS:
(Meant to put my take on these in my last update and totally forgot, which means they had time to grow on me.)
Out of the Pool: 4
This sort of feels like an introduction track, but I love everything going on sonically. The dark, mystical synths with the bass and eerie, ambient soundscape sound great together; I love the chilling, barely-audible vocals that sound like they’re whispering to you. The screeching, abrasive line of distortion midway through is a perfect addition as well.
You are Here: 4
Spaced-out, mellow psychedelic cut that’s hard for me not to love; the somber, melancholy layers of synths compliment the delicacy of the rest of the production so well. Goes on for maybe a tad too long, but still too beautiful for me to really complain.
Shades of Blue: 2
Classic minimal YLT song with sugary-sweet vocals, guitar and piano based production. I like how subtle the song is, but I don’t see much of a difference between this and material they’ve already put out.
She May, She Might: 3
Has the subtly gorgeous feel of YLT’s old work, but effortlessly more effective than Shades of Blue. The soft drumming and stripped-back guitar layers are dazzlingly gorgeous. The mellow, unassuming vocal performance here was also my favorite on the EP.