The Helio Sequence – “Red Shifting” & “Leave or Be Yours”

A description about The Helio Sequence’s new creative adjustment on their new self-titled sixth album (out today, May 12th) can be found here at Sub Pop’s website. In summary, the group forced themselves to write these songs within a strict set of time instead of laboring towards perfection over a elongated period of time. This new approach forced the group into “…taking the good with the bad, of letting creativity push past constraint, of simply making music in the moment.” This can be seen throughout the album, as the songs have a much more natural flow than in the previous album Negotiations (2012). The formats of these songs are not as intricately woven, and I think it helps The Helio Sequence’s sound become more inviting, and less dependent on electronic manipulation. Check out the song “Red Shifting” below and the romance-themed “Leave or Be Yours:”

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Chastity Belt – “Joke”

 Nothing serious

Everything’s a joke

When we smile

It’s all in smoke

A little rockabilly. A steady bassline. And blunt guitars. Mix that in with some dry humor and a little wretchedness. You get Chastity Belt. The four girls originally attended Whitman, “one of those small liberal arts colleges,” and after entering a Battle of the Bands, the group never looked back. I truly believe rock’s not dead. It is still well and alive with all these female rockers who really don’t care what you think. Check out the album that comes out on March 24th.

Patrick Watson – “Love Songs for Robots”

Sampled in a preview for the current season of The Walking Dead, the acclaimed TV series on AMC, Patrick Watson’s “Love Songs for Robots,” is murky and mysterious. Its experimental sounds move from background noise to the forefront and back again almost seamlessly, and his orchestration is top-notch, especially in the way the song continuously shifts in shape. Look for his album that comes out on May 11th via Domino Records.

Jordan Klassen- Firing Squad

Jordan Klassen is back. The Vancouver-based musician, released his LP Repentance on Nevado Records almost a year ago. He actually recorded Repentance with producer/Multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Anderson who worked with another RTM favorite Aidan Knight. The easy comparison is to Sufjan Stevens, but his newest single has the indelible hook that could help get him some serious radio play in the near future.

And another for good luck.