Even when the station is busy with pledge drives and other special events, the new music keeps rolling in, and we do our best to keep up with it all to make sure youâ€™re given the opportunity to hear the new stuff as soon as possible.
This weekâ€™s new music highlights are led by a couple of excellent dance-rock releases. While LCD Soundsystem and !!! have both done fine work in the past, their latest albums are far and away their best yet. LCDâ€™s James Murphy & co. bring a broader, more fully realized sound, stronger vocals and a variety of knockout songs with greater emotional resonance to their 2nd album Sound of Silver. The sound ranges from typical LCD punk-funk dance-floor scorchers to early â€˜80s New Wave disco-pop a la Talking Heads, Tom Tom Club and New Order before coming to a close with a surprisingly spare and pretty ballad. Highly recommended, as is the 3rd album from the Brooklyn-via-Sacramento band !!! (most often pronounced “chk chk chk”). While !!! have always delivered some wicked dance grooves, this time they do it with more confident vocal performances and better songs than theyâ€™ve managed up till now.
The station also received a couple of winning albums from Northwest bands this week. The new Seattle group North Twin has been getting some acclaim around town as the natural heirs to the late great alt-country rockers (and KEXP favorites) Radio Nationals. While drummer Rick Cranford is the only North Twin member who was in Radio Nationals, North Twin also has an anthemic roots-rock sound thatâ€™s rooted in both Uncle Tupelo alt-country and some classic southern rock, and they have their own distinctive lead singer and songwriter in Tony Fulgham. Their debut album Falling Apart (listen here) is a potent set of colorful Fulgham originals that show the band coming into their own as purveyors of soulful, blue-collar roots-rock.
Also on the gritty, no-frills tip, Bellingham band the DTâ€™s are in peak form on their 3rd album Filthy Habits, a raw and sweaty set combining hard-driving garage-rock and high-energy soul with primal guitar riffs, a cooking rhythm section and Diana Young-Blanchardâ€™s wailing vocals.