Efterklang – ‘Leaves – The Colour Of Falling’
Released on: Thambourinoceros
Sounds like: Art pop elevated to the state of a delirious opera staging. Kind of abysmal, kind of beautiful, always exciting.
Recommended because: Oh, the many incarnations of EFTERKLANG. The beloved Danish gentlemen really outgrew the term ‘band’ at this point. They’re more like an artistic nucleus around which movies, live shows and of course, music is staged. Now, we also have an opera chapter in the storybook of this band. LEAVES is naturally not the more easy digestible art pop that EFTERKLANG is capable of. But it is an exciting and excitingly moving piece of music that not only fans should give a spin. (Henning)
Songs to check out: The Colour Not Of Love, Imagery of Perfection
Esben And The Witch – ‘Older Terrors’
Released on: Season Of Mist
Recommended because: The Brighton-based three-piece has come quite a way if you think back to their first step into broader public with 2010’s Marching Song-EP. The notion of horror and mysteriousness was already imminent back then. But to be honest: It felt more like a tongue-in-cheek popcultural reference to fairytales. That impression already faded throughout their last releases and is ultimately obsolete now with their signing to French metal label Season of Mist and the release of Older Terrors. These four (!) songs truly live up to their name with a terrifying mixture of Doom, Post-Rock and Dark Ambient. Be careful what you wish for. (Henning)
Songs to check out: Well, there’s only four. Maybe try one at a time.
Hundreds – ‘Wilderness’
Released on: Embassy Of Music/ Warner
Sounds like: A sonorous journey through the wilderness. Melancholic, dark and gloomy but nevertheless following a clear structure.
Recommended because: HUNDREDS‘ third album is a perfectly arranged musical piece that unifies – just like it’s two predecessors – the Milner sibling’s masterminds. Philipp Milners clearly structured electronics meet his sister Eva’s atmospheric voice to create absorbing soundscapes. Wilderness feels even more focussed and cohesive; destined to combine the experimental and cinematic approach with clever songwriting. It’s sometimes catchy, sometimes hard to conceive, but always organic. (Miriam)
Songs to check out: Wilderness, Spotless, Take It Down
Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions – ‘Until the Hunter’
Released on: Tendril Tales/ Rough Trade
Sounds like: Tender lullabies performed by one of music’s most sensual voices in a dreamy but partly also ghostly setting that will have you want to sink deeper and deeper with every tune.
Recommended because: The MAZZY STAR singer hasn’t lost her unique magic on her first collaborative album with MY BLOODY VALENTINE‘s Colm Ó Cíosóig since 2009. Whether it’s the gloomy Twin Peaks setting of the 9-minute long opener Into The Trees or the smooth summer day cruise with KURT VILE in Let Me Get There: HOPE SANDOVAL got the rare ability to calm your soul down, caress your ears and send you along a path of nocturnal bliss the same way she did two decades ago. Until The Hunter is another timeless entry into a back catalogue that should be discovered by all of you immediately. (Norman)
Songs to check out: Into The Trees, Let Me Get There, The Hiking Song, I Took A Slip
Palace – ‘So Long Forever’
Released on: Fiction Records
Sounds like: Hypnotizing and enchanting, alternative band PALACE combine FLEET FOXES-like harmonies with guitar riffs played with the expertise of the likes of Paul Simon, to create a truly mesmerizing sound. This album also boasts an incredibly amount of falsetto provided by lead singer, Leo.
Recommended because: As far as debut albums go, this is a corker. The band is made up of a bunch of old school friends and the unison the band clearly have in real life, is reflected through their music. This unity creates a beautiful set of songs that don’t scream at the listener but instead, invite them to take a journey through an array of stand-alone songs that are both wonderfully complex and humble. So Long Forever requires the listener to do no more than sit back, relax and let PALACE work their magic. (Anastasia)
Songs to check out: It’s Over, Family, Slaving On