Empire Of The Sun-Two Vines (2016)

My Rating: 100% (A++)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 66%

Average Rating: 83%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Before
  2. High and Low
  3. Two Vines
  4. Friends
  5. There’s No Need
  6. Way To Go
  7. Ride
  8. Digital Life
  9. First Crush
  10. ZZZ
  11. To Her Door
  12. Keystone
  13. Lend Me Some Light
  14. Welcome To My Life

Favourite Song on Album:


Listen to This Album When You’re:

On the search for poppy fun music to turn your brain off to.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s trippy and weird and consistent with their other covers.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yes, absolutely!

Final Thoughts:

Empire of the Sun was one of the first dream pop bands that I got into, and I feel like I kind of owe them for helping me get into bands like Blonde Redhead and Beach House (Well, them and Richard Sandlin), this album is consistently entertaining brain candy. It’s nothing new, let’s get that straight, but it is really fun and really easy to turn your brain off to. It’s interesting to see the response to this band (mostly negative) after the release of their single Walking on a Dream, people are expecting them to reinvent the wheel, but these guys just wanna make funky music, and they’ve never failed at that.

The Human League-Dare (1981)

My Rating: 80% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 80%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. The Things Dreams Are Made Of
  2. Open Your Heart
  3. The Sound Of The Crowd
  4. Darkness
  5. Do Or Die
  6. Get Carter
  7. I Am The Law
  8. Seconds
  9. Love Action (I Believe In Love)
  10. Don’t You Want Mett

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

In the mood for easily danceable electronic from the 80’s.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Hilarious. It’s weird. I like it.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Already own it on vinyl and it’s a lot of fun.

Final Thoughts:

The Human League is so much fun, but more than that they are political and heartbreaking as well (check out Seconds off this album). Dare is a great introduction to this band, it’s so 80’s sounding in the best possible way. Like somebody singing over Sega Genesis soundeffects (especially Do or Die) Dare has enough substance and interesting beats to make this album worth your time.

M83-Junk (2016)

My Rating: 57% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: 68%

Rolling Stone Rating: 40%

Metacritic Rating: 66%

Average Rating: 57.8%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Do It, Try It
  2. Go!
  3. Walkway Blues
  4. Bibi The Dog Feat. Mai Lan
  5. Moon Crystal
  6. For The Kids Feat. Susanne Sundfør
  7. Solitude
  8. The Wizard
  9. Laser Gun
  10. Road Blaster
  11. Tension
  12. Atlantique Sud
  13. Time Wind
  14. Ludivine
  15. Sunday Night 1987

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

When you want an uneven synthpop album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Love it! It’s a great cover that’s just as weird as this band.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Nah.

Final Thoughts:

Here’s the thing with Junk when the tracks hit, they hit hard. There are some truly amazing songs on this album. But as with most electronic albums I’ve come across there is a lot of filler short tracks that weigh it down. Ugh if only they’d cut this album in half and add more like the good songs on the album then we’d have something to talk about.

Future Islands-The Far Field (2017)

My Rating: 91% (A)

Pitchfork Rating: 76%

Rolling Stone Rating: 70%

Metacritic Rating: 77%

Average Rating: 78.5%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Aladdin
  2. Time On Her Side
  3. Ran
  4. Beauty of the Road
  5. Cave
  6. Through The Roses
  7. North Star
  8. Ancient Water
  9. Candles
  10. Day Glow Fire
  11. Shadows
  12. Black Rose

Favourite Song on Album:


Listen to This Album When You’re:

You’re feeling a little more funky than Postal Service, but not as funky as James Brown.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It follows their bands persona really well, it’s really beautiful looking and original.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Oh you know I do, son.

Final Thoughts:

Future Islands continues to release amazing albums, this is my favourite of 2017 thus far (we’ll see if that changes). Samuel T. Herring’s vocals keep me wanting more and the funky instrumentals are a delicious treat.

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