Stef Chura – Midnight [Saddle Creek]

A timeless rocker from Stef Chura. Chura’s voice hits like a truck. It’s pushed and strained to that sweet spot right before it becomes contrived. She has a natural affect that a lot of singers might try to fake, with little to no success. The melodies ramble almost in a stream of consciousness but always land exactly where they need to. The rhythmic playfulness of the lyrics dance around the instruments, adding that “pocket” where everything is allowed to come together in harmony. Fans of Car Seat Headrest will be pleased to know that Will Toledo had a hand in producing this album, and you probably could have figured that out just by listening to it. But this is Stef Chura’s music. Toledo knows this and it’s apparent in the amount of room her voice is given.

Cate Le Bon – Reward [Mexican Summer]

I’ve been thinking about the physical medium of vinyl; how these LPs hold entire worlds. Within the grooves are vast canyons of life, sound and stories. Like the carved city of Petra, the canyon walls tell the story. But, imagine if Petra stretched the length of the world. How much information would be held. If you think about a vinyl record on a microscopic level, it becomes more clear just how much there is to take in. Listening to Reward, I am challenged to explore every temple and domicile. Cate Le Bon has mastered the art of melody that is as relatable as it is esoteric. The use of synthesized sounds and drum beats give it a grounding that allows the songs to take off into unexpected directions. Sit down with this one, folks. Explore it with a rock chisel and magnifying glass.

Outer Spaces – Gazing Globe [Western Vinyl]

This one’s gonna getcha. Gazing Globe isn’t out till later this month, but we’ve been playing it in the store for a couple weeks now. So far, I’ve had about 5 people come up and ask what it is, a couple people have put in preorders and I’ve caught two people shazam-ing it. (Don’t shazam stuff in our store! Ask the friendly employee what we’re listening to! WE LIKE TO TALK TO PEOPLE!) I’ll let the music speak for itself. It’s immediately likable, but not in that way where you’re over it after two listens.

Froth – Duress [Wichita]

Lindsay explained her feelings about this album in real time with me having those exact same feelings! She said she was a little underwhelmed upon first listen, but then gave it another listen and is hooked! While she was saying this, I realized that I hadn’t even noticed what was playing, but as soon as my attention was on it, I was immediately drawn in. Yeah, you got to listen to this one. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I’ve written many times before about how music sometimes needs our attention. Like reading a book. You don’t expect the book to deliver everything just by casually flipping through the pages. That’s what magazines are for. Some albums are magazines. Some albums are books.

Amyl & the Sniffers – ST [ATO]

This album doesn’t give a shit if you like it or not. It doesn’t need you. Who the hell are you anyway? Maybe when you’re done reading your little music reviews you can get out of your “reading chair” and get over yourself long enough to just listen to some god damned rock n’ roll for the sake of listening to rock n’ roll.