Though the site itself may have been short-lived, one of the legacies of Turntable.fm is the creation of communities of individuals spanning geographic boundaries who share, discuss, and enjoy music communally. Though the platform is gone, the communities remain – in the form of Facebook groups, Instagram followers, Soundrop rooms, and even concert buddies or Google Hangouts for the brave. The exchange of recommendations and shared listening experiences continue, proving that Hobos have discerning taste and an ear for finding the good stuff.
This is an attempt to curate the recommendations of a diverse community of music listeners with an appetite for discovery and aesthetically-pleasing sounds. In this new feature, we will post some of the latest weekly musical obsessions of Hobos, offering a range of recommendations that should appeal to just about anyone who harbors a similar love of music.
What we can’t get enough of this week:
My current obsession is the new album by James Vincent McMorrow, Post Tropical. I wasn’t that convinced with the first listen, but with repeat plays I’ve become hooked. It’s beautifully textured, soulful, and just plain gorgeous from start to finish.
I’ve been a huge fan of Derek Trucks ever since watching him play with Eric Clapton during his Crossroads festival in 2007, and The Derek Trucks Band have become one of those bands I am always in the mood for. In 2010 he joined forces with his wife Susan Tedeschi to form the Tedeschi Trucks Band. Their first record was great with tracks like ‘Midnight in Harlem’ and ‘Learn How to Love’ but their newest endeavor, ‘Made Up Mind’ comes with track after track of those bluesy feels. The mix of Susan Tedeschi’s beautifully powerful vocals and Derek Trucks’s smooth and lyrical guitar style make this album flow so well. The talent of the rest of the band (8 others to be exact) also shines through to give every track that extra little bit of “it”. This will surely be one of my favorite records of 2013.. in 2014. Notable tracks include: Made Up Mind, Whiskey Legs, It’s So Heavy, The Storm.
Son Lux’s remix of My Brightest Diamond – “To Pluto’s Moon” is totally my favorite song right at the moment. And it reminds me of some Bjork track that is somewhere deep in my iTunes library, but I can’t remember which. So I’ve spent the past week rediscovering Bjork, espically her 1995 album Post. So much good stuff. Amazing to think the album is nearly 20 years old, and still sounds so relevant today.
The small country of Luxembourg has about half a million inhabitants, and has never been on anyone’s music landscape very much until Portuguese born Luxemburg resident Victor Ferreira aka Sun Glitters released his glitch-chill electronics debut album “Everything Could Be Fine” in 2011. On his sophomore attempt “Scattered Into Light”, out this week on Mush Records, singer Sara Cappai of the Italian dream-pop band Diverting Duo is featured on most tracks and, well, saves Sun Glitters from himself. Because the truth is, we had a lot of pitch-shifted, chopped-up lush electronics thrown at us in the past years and as well crafted as Sun Glitter’s synths and slow beats are, they aren’t standing out on their own anymore. The bar has been raised and Ferreira’s new album could have been just another drop in the ocean. But Cappai’s vocals elevate the record above said bar and to album-of-the-week status.
Every year there’s at least one album that slips through the cracks. No matter how on top of music one tries to stay, every January I find myself discovering an album from mid-2013 – usually one that was met with considerable acclaim – that completely escaped my notice. This January, that album is Laurel Halo’s ‘Chance of Rain’. It’s a fascinating album that is incredibly difficult to define. There are passages rooted in modern jazz, industrial techno, ambient, and glitchy IDM. Similar to fellow experimental artists like Oneohtrix Point Never, Halo explores textures and sonic landscapes that at first blush wouldn’t seem suited for one another, but she makes them work. Perfect for long post-sunset rides on a bus or train, this is a complex album that rewards close listening.
Leif Vollebekk “North Americana” Upon first taste, Leif Vollebekk’s sophomore effort titled ‘North Americana’ seemed a bit hokey. But my ears warmed to its folk charm after only three songs. Leif delivers a thought-provoking record, lyrically constructed in the spirit of Bob Dylan and often delivered with the charm of Tom Waits.
Cashmere Cat – Wedding Bells EP (Out Feb. 10)
Piano…crisp beats…a little atmospheric…it’s Ryan Hemsworth with a little more gangsta.
‘Towards a Quaker View of Synthesizers’ is the debut album of Cascading Slopes, the new music project from Jacob Graham (of The Drums and Goat Explosion). It came out last year, but my obsession with it has been renewed because I just bought it on vinyl. The album title is not a gimmick – Jacob started attending Quaker meetings and his experience with them has really informed his approach to this record. This influence doesn’t manifest itself at all in the lyrics, but rather in the approach to the music itself: an attraction to the simple beauty of classic songwriting structures, and tendency for stripped-down and unadorned arrangements. This is not a dance record or a pop record – it’s essentially a melancholy folk record performed on vintage synthesizers, and it’s quite unlike almost anything being made right now.
This week I have been listening to Lake Street Dive’s Fun Machine (2012). There is such a strong presence within Rachael Price’s voice that I cannot help being completely enveloped in it. If you enjoy the likes of Rachel Nagy (The Detroit Cobras) or Amy Winehouse’s tasteful throwback tracks, then I highly recommend this album of select covers to help thaw your frozen soul. Their new album of originals, Bad Self Portraits, comes out in February. Here is a teaser. Get hype.