Dizzy Swallows

New Music from Old Loves

September 20th, 2013

This week, two as-yet-unreleased albums from two of my most favorite artists were made available online.

The first can be found on here, on NPR’s First Listen, as is nothing less than Mazzy Star‘s first album in 17 years. Praise be. Titled Seasons of Your Day, the album will be released September 24. If you aren’t already a fan of Mazzy Star, you can thank the cult classic for influencing the woozy sound of such contemporary bands as Beach House and Dum Dum Girls (both great). Mazzy Star, with singer Hope Sandoval, did darkly psychedelic before it was vogue. Below, you can hear the album’s single, “California”.

Speaking of the dark and stormy, this week also offered the first experience of Trentemøller‘s upcoming album, Lost. As a huge fan of the Danish electronic producer (questionable hairstyles notwithstanding), it has been quite gratifying to stream … Continue reading

Laura Mvula: Sing To The Moon

April 19th, 2013

This has been a troubled week. While we mourn our losses and search our souls for answers, I believe it is important to persevere in the things that bring us joy. I have been back in the studio this week (you can see some previous posts on my art here, and here, and here). In addition to my work, what I’ve found to always help heal my psyche is discovering and enjoying new music.

I found Laura Mvula via NPR’s First Listen, and was captivated by her unique sound. The folks at First Listen expertly describe it as: “agelessly soulful vocals, girl-group handclaps, and a heavily Vocoder-enhanced chorus.” You can stream the full album here. You can also listen to and enjoy the completely wonderful video for her song “Green Garden” below.

I hope you enjoy and I hope the day is drawing closer when … Continue reading

Total Loss

September 12th, 2012

Some of you may recall this 2011 Little Bits post in which I waxed poetic on the merits of one, Tom Krell. Well hopefully my enthusiasm resonated with a few of you because Krell is back with How To Dress Well‘s sophomore effort titled, Total Loss. The album will be out September 18, but for now you can stream the album in its entirety here. Below, listen to the spacious, provocative track, “Cold Nites”.

The album is certainly the most fully-formed we’ve heard from How to Dress Well, who has gotten along just fine under the radar. Krell’s previous works exemplify all the best of moody, hazy lo-fi. With Total Loss, Krell’s R&B influences are more clearly articulated, especially in the sparse, thumping track “& It Was You”, leading to easy comparisons to 90s R&B stars like Sade and Maxwell. But as with older works, Krell … Continue reading

Cat Power: Sun

August 29th, 2012

For the first time in six long years, Chan Marshall, the creative force behind Cat Power, has released a new album, appropriately titled Sun. Not only that, but thanks to the good folks at NPR Music, you can now stream the album in its entirety.

For longtime fans of Chan Marshall, whose career has spanned nearly two decades, Sun may come as something of a shock. Past Cat Power albums feature a slew of moody ballads, intimate confessionals, cutting notes, arty blues, and ethereal vocals. I myself admit to relegating certain songs to rainy day/curl up in a blanket playlists, and saving the entire album You Are Free for when I’m feeling particularly existential or need a really, really good cry (“Good Woman”, anyone?). As they so aptly quip on NPR, “She could sing random figures from her tax returns and convey more heartache and … Continue reading

Laura Marling: A Creature I Don’t Know

September 7th, 2011

A few weeks ago I shared the song, “Sofia“, from Laura Marling‘s new album, A Creature I Don’t Know. The album is set to release on the 13th but you can now hear it streaming in its entirety over at the New York Times, along with a great interview with Ms. Marling herself. Listen here.

I still can’t get enough of her last album, I Speak Because I Can (“Rambling Man” is an all-time fav), and have had A Creature on heavy rotation since its appearance yesterday. Though she’s all of 21 years old, Laura Marling’s songwriting plumbs the depths of British folk with a maturity that belays her age. The evolution of her heavily imagistic lyrics, lilting, pensive voice, and intricate guitar proves she’s a force to be reckoned with. A few of my favorite tracks thus far are “The Beast” and … Continue reading