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Jul 23, 2018







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Fleece, Voyager (Fleece Music)




Fleece, Voyager (Fleece Music)

When last we left this Montreal foursome (2013’s Scavenger album), they were trying to be all things to all people. The opening track was neo-stoner stuff a la Band of Skulls, and then the ingredients started to pile on, one by one: 1970s brass-pop, Flaming Lips, Pink Floyd, Warlocks and wobbly hipster things jostled for position (politely of course). They certainly look like annoying vegans, but that wasn’t the point – they just wanted to rock out, to a degree, and, thank God, they’re not the token leaning-to-heavy act on Arts & Crafts Records (yet). This time out, bandleader Matthew Rogers’s lyrics are comprised of time-traveling nuggets of advice to his own closeted teen self, so there’s a slightly conceptual premise to the thing, which helps. Turns out the record doesn’t need much help, though, not if you’re a fan of Flaming Lips at their most commercially accessible – yeah, yeah, I know, but really, not only does it find some real melodic sweet spots, the songs fit together more cohesively, even when it shifts from psychedelic torch (“Under the Light”) to Beatles-infused rhumba (“On My Mind”) to spacey Winston Giles arena-indie. Very good stuff. A — Eric W. Saeger




Summer Moon, With You Tonight (self-released)
CD Reviews: February 9. 2017

02/09/17
By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



 This side project from Strokes bassist Nikolai Fraiture could never be mistaken as a proper Strokes album, which is part of the good news. It’s certainly steeped in 1980s nostalgia, essentially a cross between early U2 and Joy Division with some woozy Beach Boys sonics going on in the vocal department, right on cue for this millennium (sort of – isn’t that Beach Boys vibe starting to smell a little moldy to you people?). But, again, the roots are definitively ’80s; if you told me this was a local band slugging it out with Mission of Burma from back in the Pleistocene age, I would have bought that bridge without hesitation, that is until the squashed-gltich intro for “Chemical,” which, although marginally cheesy, evinces a modicum of familiarity with your Pro Tools and whatnot. (Heh, there’s a Mister Roboto part in there.) Melodically decent overall, no ground broken. B — Eric W. Saeger

 





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