Album Reviews (32)

Burn This Album — KGFREEZE's Scorching 'Scapegoat'

Four albums into this form, bandleader Kyle Gervais (ex-Cosades, ex-Grand Hotel) has explored a lot of sounds since he began his KGFREEZE project in 2013, from R&B-meets-funk ass-wigglery to angular, incisive indie-rock. But on Scapegoat, released this spring at a trim 10 songs and 24 minutes, Gervais's gestural of dismissal to the genre explorations and contrivances of previous albums is dramatic. Gone are the funky affectations of Hypocrite; the party-ready dance-rock of Volunteer, the lo-fi weirdo-soul of…

Believing in Spencer Albee — The Portland Pop Devotee's 'Relentlessly Yours'

"How many times do I have to tear my innards out?” Spencer Albee asks in “Ten to One,” the final song of his new album, Relentlessly Yours. On the twentieth record of the Portland pop artist's career, it’s not always clear who is asking him to do this. The majority of songs on Relentlessly Yours, Spencer’s largely self-produced new album, are written in direct address to a beloved other—the “you” in oh, how I loved you.…

Quite Psyched: SeepeopleS Drop the 'Hate'

In another world not far off from our own, teenagers in Nebraska are skipping school to make out to SeepeopleS songs behind the faculty parking lots. In this one, the 20-year-running pop-confection project of Will Bradford and Brooke Binion has released another meticulous, painstakingly crafted release of psychedelic pop songs, while the Flaming Lips sell hundreds of records a day by name recognition alone. The last we heard from the Portland quartet was their massive…

Foam Castles' Dark and Fluttery 'Bird Death'

Over the decade since Tyler Jackson began writing and recording as Foam Castles, his weird-ass songs and structures have evolved into something definitively his. Of course, the 10 songs and 29 minutes of Bird Death, Jackson’s eighth full-length album, have a lineage too. A Bob Pollard vibe is inarguable; thinner traces of Robyn Hitchcock show up. Portland’s sadly dead Metal Feathers made a dent. This album’s “Inside After the Gold Rush” betrays less Neil Young…

SeepeopleS announce the release of Love, the first in a three-part EP series

SeepeopleS, the original anti-genre indie musical pranksters, are releasing a new studio album on Sept. 6. The EP, titled Love is the first of three in the Love, Hate, Live series of releases planned for the coming year. SeepeopleS has been gaining an underground army of loyal fans since the band’s inception in Boston back in 2000. Music lovers have celebrated the group’s previous five albums, many of which feature musical contributions from members of…

Edwards and friends: Folk veteran receives assist with Tomorrow's Child

My introduction to Jonathan Edwards came courtesy of Paul Westerberg thanks to a cover of the former’s classic, “Sunshine,” on the soundtrack to the hit television series, Friends. Like most 10-year-olds hanging out in northern Maine, I was listening to the cassettes that I had in my possession from front to back, seeking out the hidden gems buried within that were unlikely to make it to radio. Westerberg’s version of “Sunshine” sounded familiar (likely due…

Revelations from Dominic and The Lucid: FERRET explores countless avenues

It has been five years since the last Dominic and The Lucid LP.   In the time between The Lucid and their new record, FERRET, singer/guitarist/songwriter/leader Dominic Lavoie got married and welcomed a daughter. He also recorded a solo album and became the ringleader for a seven-piece band, both called ShaShaSha. Meanwhile, D&TL put out just one song, 2014’s moody “Late Night at The Circus”. As Exposé once sang, “Seasons change / People change,” and based purely on…

Into an uncertain future with Old Etc.: Biddeford-based band releases tantalizing album

Bands break up all the time. Local and regional acts tend to do so more often and less ceremoniously. Rarely does an unsigned group, still making their rounds at bars, clubs and DIY shows, get the chance to know that the end is coming with enough of an advance to send themselves off properly. Old Etc., a Biddeford-based rock quartet, have, in under two years, gone from playing their first live shows to becoming a…

Deep end of the pool: Purse dives into layers of sound in adventurous outing

Put It In The Pool, the latest release from the Ginette Labonville-fronted trio, Purse, is a noisy, sludgy, idea-stuffed affair that makes the best use of its production decisions, sequencing and area travelled within each track. Though technical errors exist throughout (some by choice), something has been captured in these performances, and the way they have been layered, that goes beyond getting it “right.” “Hot Swap” kicks things off with a tinny-sounding band playing a…

An Evening With challenges, confounds with hook-heavy outing

Arriving almost eight years after their last release, Lovers and Losers, the new self-titled record by An Evening With is a satisfying and confounding listen. A warmer, fuller sound with less obvious country leanings make up most of this album’s tracklist, which also includes some giant left turns with surprising payoffs. Though singer/guitarist Jeremy Alexander’s vocal range is limited, his delivery of smart lyrics fits these songs and their sonically pleasing arrangements. Tom Rogers’ drumming…
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