Release Date: August 26th, 2016
How to Be a Human Being is not a perfect record, but sonically it has some of the most intricate beats I’ve heard this month. It has a world music influence that creates an upbeat atmosphere, which contrasts with its darker lyrical material. The lyrics on this record are obscure and surreal, but create a whole new world for the listener. Upon listening for the first time, I wasn’t sure if this album could make it through the hype of their debut ZABA. However, the stand out tracks “Youth”, “Season 2 Episode 3”, and “The Other Side of Paradise” are some of the most infectious tunes to come across my ears. “Youth” is the second cut from the record and by far the most “poppy” and accessible. If you weren’t a Glass Animals fan, this song could easily turn you. It is one of the less obscure tracks instrumentally, and the lyrical matter is based around the joys and sorrows of youth which is something that can resonate with anyone. Immediately following, the third song from the album “Season 2 Episode 3” is arguably the best song on the record and for sure my favorite. Sonically, the instrumentation is groovy and funky, the beats are infectious. The lyrical content is more obscure, but it goes hand in hand with the hypnotic disposition this song extrudes. The eighth track, “The Other Side of Paradise”, is a close second to “Season 2 Episode 3”. It’s a happy medium between the obscurity of “Season 2 Episode 3” and the accessibility as “Youth”. The lyrics tell a story, and the instrumentation is sharp and repetitive. The stark high hats and electronic reverb as well as the ringing bells come together flawlessly. Overall, these three tracks are some of the best Glass Animals song I’ve heard. You can’t help but dance to these awesome tracks.
-Jesse Raymer, Assistant Music Director
Release Date: April 1st, 2016
Oh, how I love Frankie Cosmos. This album is one of the reasons why their songs are the soundtracks to my life. This album is short, but all the songs come together in a sort of beautiful poem. Greta Kline’s lyrics are personal, but also relatable. The kick off to the album is with the song “Floated In”, which is one of my favorite cuts from the album. The opening lyrics “I floated in and started living” let the listener know that is album will be unorthodox. The lyrics ask questions, and give the audience a sense that we are within Kline’s head. Her writing is one of the best features on this record. It is a lot more mature that than subject matter on her last full length album, Zentropy. However, Frankie Cosmos didn’t lose their quirkiness and charming instrumentation. Sonically, this second album is very similar to the first, it compliments the lyrical content without overshadowing it. The most interesting thing about this record to me is the fact that all the songs come together, you really have to listen to it in its entirety to enjoy the experience to its full capacity. Every track is equally important and equally enjoyable, which is what makes Frankie Cosmos so unique.
-Jesse Raymer, Assistant Music Director
Release Date: September 16th, 2016
Formerly known as Viet Cong, Preoccupations releases their first album which calls upon sounds of Joy Division, lo-fi synthesizers, post-punk, and new wave with an abstract twist. The album’s production is a step out of a cave to a place where the vocals are upfront and the instruments have a bit more oxygen pumped into them. The track “Memory” is a beautiful 11 minute song which shifts around with grace and then gets sent off to space in a mess of feedback and entrancing layers sweeping the air around it. The whole album shifts into each song fluently but in a messy way. It seems there was no central theme to guide the band in recording this album. Worth a listen if you enjoy Joy Division or New Order. Favorite tracks: ‘Memory’ ‘Degraded’
-Richie Miele, Music Director
Release Date: October 23rd, 2015
This album from 2015 is something I’ve been spinning nonstop since it came out. Kylie Lotz produces an album close to the hearts of those coping with anxiety, insecurity and loss that truly touches my soul. Her sound is a wonderful mix of rock with punk roots, as her alternating support members are often from Tiger’s Jaw. This collection can instantly incite a tear from your eye at the same time it lets you jump around with bliss and a big smile to match. A truly outstanding feel-piece.
Tracks that stand out: Tommy, Feel, The Fire, Shame
– Rachel Cazarez, Program Director
Release Date: July 8th, 2016
Omni made their debut with the album Deluxe. Omni is made up of ex Deerhunter guitarist Frankie Broyles and ex carnivores members Philip Frobos and Billy Mitchell. I love how tight this group is while still maintaining their non-calculated and casual sound. The rhythms are driving and the melodies are catchy. It has a Deerhunter-ish sound but less produced. The lofi vocals give this album an “at home” feeling.
Favorite Tracks: Earrings, Afterlife
-Shannon Burris, Manager
Release Date: August 20th, 2016
In case you haven’t heard, Frank Ocean finally broke his silence after four years. Ocean released his second studio album, Blond, in late August after years of cryptic clues and changed released dates. I have been anticipating this album for months (dare I say years?) and it delivered.
Favorite Tracks: Solo, Pink +White, Self-control
–Shannon Burris, Manager
Release Date: August 25th, 2014
Rubblebucket has a strange sound combining distortion, trumpets, backward instruments and serious vocals that come together into music with meaning that you can dance to.
Favorite Track: Carousel Ride
– John McCrone, Technical Director
Release Date: March 14th, 2014
Tom Rosenthal is an average looking father of two that makes some of the best music I’ve ever listened to. Most of his music involves a piano and some strings with some wonderfully off-beat lyrics. Some are pop songs, some funny, and some that are very moving. I listen to Tom everyday, and you should too!
Favorite Track: It’s Ok
–John McCrone, Technical Director