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Ty Segall – Ty Segall

Ty Segall’s 9th studio album is his second self-titled record following a 2008 release. Without any prior exposure to Ty’s sound I arrived at this album with no expectations or predispositions. On first listen, what stuck out to me the most was the seemingly chaotic and unorganized performances that somehow felt meticulously strung together in context of the entire album. Numerous songs from this 10 track record find unity in their similar vibe ~ post-rock anthems led by shredding electric guitar, somewhat piercing vocals and fast paced, hard hitting percussion to follow. Ty Segall shreds. This man can keep a consistent intensity that feels unique in energy and style rather than a conforming mosh of loud sounds; a common defining issue for punk-metal bands attempting to find their sound. Backed up with a full band, Ty leads the charge through some gnarly tracks such as “Thank you Mr. K”, a helter-skelter head banger with a speedy tempo. This song progressively becomes more chaotic and damn-near disturbing as the catchy rhythm slowly becomes disoriented and off-beat; complete with unnerving piano riffs, strung out guitar licks and a transitional pause to throw (probably) plates and glasses against a wall. While many tracks fit a similar description in terms of energy and sonic style, Ty knows how to slow things down; giving a more balanced feel to the album overall. In the closing track, “Take Care (To Comb Your Hair)” Ty delivers a somewhat Beatles inspired farewell track that feels distinctly more calm and relaxed than the general tone of the record; however it continues Segall’s relatively fast pace with occasional electric guitar assistance layered over the acoustic leads. I think what I enjoyed most from this album after several listens is the sense of awareness each song seems to possess. For example, The 10 minute ballad “Warm Hands (Freedom Released)” delivers a consistent fast paced style and concludes into “Talkin” a blue-grass slow jam that could not be more of an opposing

sound to its precursing track. Ty Segall delivers a solid mix of genre-defiance, light sonic schizophrenia, and a sense of cynical awareness that adds a lot to the context and general aesthetic of the record. I mean the guy literally ends the album in what begins as a high intensity guitar riff that cuts out before 10 seconds pass, talk about blue-balling.

By: Diego Cardoso

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The Dig – Bloodshot Tokyo

“To be listened to in which the spirit it was made” are the lines hidden on the inter cover of The Dig’s newest album, Bloodshot Tokyo, instantly preparing the listeners for a relatable album from start to finish. This is The Dig’s third full album and Bloodshot Tokyo is the definition of third times a charm.  Based out of New York, The Dig have channeled their classic rock and roll style roots and combined it with the fun, free feelings of modern synthesized beats to create a spacey heaven for any music lover.

The album begins with “Intro (Ordinary mind)”, a 1:07 good- feeling melody creating the limitless feeling that music can bring to a listener. The only lyrics spoken during the song are “ordinary mind”, which reminds us that although we feel free, we are all interconnected by similar wants and challenges (including lust and struggle with oneself), which are addressed heavily throughout the rest of the album.  This transitions seamlessly with “Jet Black Hair” a previously released single from the album, full of rhythm and a psychedelic like wonder. Songs like “Jet Black Hair”, “Bleeding Heart [You are the one]”, and “Let Your Lover Know” catch you through simple, soulful lyrics and funky guitar riffs demonstrating the overall 70’s vibe of Bloodshot Tokyo and are likely to be instant favorites.

However, The Dig did not abandon the slower, darker compositions know from past records. “Tired of Love” shows the slow deterioration of a once very active, passionate love and the emotions that come with the continuous effort put into a ultimately failing relationship. The song concludes with “It’s over my friend” suggesting that the progression of dislike lead to a rather numb acceptance of the loss of love. In addition, “Over the Rails”, the concluding track on the album, begins with a bright piano riff following a rather angelic melody lead us to a time of inner reflection. Lyrics such as “over the rails and not trying to hang on” display that the speaker knows that in the end, he is alone in his journey.  This reminds us that we are in charge of our own futures and make decisions to get us where we are.

Overall, Bloodshot Tokyo is great for anyone seeking a spiritual daze and a chill night in. I would defiantly recommend it for any fans of Foster The People, Tame Impala or Generationals.

By: Elizabeth Face

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Little Fictions- Elbow

Little Fictions is masterfully structured in a way that walks the listener through every step of the story that the album tells. The perfectly paired vocals of Guy Garvey and grandiose instrumentals in the first song, Magnificent (She Says) set the tone of the whole album. Starting off with a high-energy guitar and then transitioning into an orchestral violin, the song creates a feeling of new beginning like the theme song to a movie reel of a couple dancing in the rain just before the climax of their story. The album continues further into the narrative with the song Gentle Storm, which picks up the story told in Magnificent (She says) this time with more telling lyrics. Garvey asks his love interest; the gentle storm, to rage his way.

Elbow pulls the listener into the story with both of these introductory songs and walks them through the excitement and infatuation of the beginning of his love, emotionally investing them in the story only to rip those giddy feelings away with the songs to follow, taking the listener down a similar emotional path than the one he endured. Each of the following songs takes on a different emotional tone, from anger, to sadness, despair, betrayal, and then forgiveness. The emotional roller-coaster that the album takes you on is magnificently relatable and captivating. Elbow is nothing less than a life lesson wrapped up in the soothing vocals of Garvey and enchanting instrumentals that accompany him in this narrative.

The final song of the album leaves you feeling calm and reflective, in a sort of clarity that only the feeling of love and lose can give you. In that way Little Fictions has not only perfectly captured the ups and downs of heartbreak, but also effectively left the listener with something more than a new playlist to listen to. With this album Little fictions has given all their fans anthems to comfort them in times of heartbreak and a story to relate to, which gives the album amazing depth and exceptional quality.

By: Sidney Corkery

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