Bandcamp Picks of the Week 11/1/17

Bandcamp Picks of the Week, as large and in charge as ever

Bandcamp Picks of the Week Ocean Tango

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The Ocean Tango – THE OCEAN TANGO

Genre: Chamber Pop

Favorite Tracks: “Stills,” “In Flight,” “Par Hasard”

After about 30 minutes into browsing Bandcamp for something new that was worth listening to, the album cover for The Ocean Tango’s self-titled album caught my eye. I clicked play on the first track and immediately felt the tension in my shoulders lessen. French jack-of-all-trades Louis Philippe teamed up with the Swedish art pop band Tesbild! for what they call a “joyful summertime collaboration.” The tracks throughout this album are crawling with horns, vibraphones, flutes, strings, harpsichords, and any other instrument that inherently brings joy to the soul. The album feels very personal, and feels incredibly similar to The Beach Boys’ lost holy-grail, THE SMILE SESSIONS. Each track exudes such joy that seeps into the listener’s ears and trickles down to their heart. On the opening track, “Stills,” the first beautifully sung words the listener hears are “Lilacs in the spring / raindrops on a string / in kodachrome.” Since many musicians, especially alternative ones, take to songwriting and performing to let out negative emotions and make troublesome observations about the world that engulfs us all, it’s a wisp of fresh, crisp air to hear songs that make you want to be back in kindergarten, building blocks and enjoying an activity simply for what it is. Beautiful lyrics, perfect harmonies, and interesting instrumentals are what makes THE OCEAN TANGO the beautiful creation it is. Check it out here. [Emmett Garvey]

Bandcamp Picks of the Week Surf Curse

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Surf Curse – BUDS 

Genre: Surf Punk

Favorite Songs: “Ponyboy,” “Bummer Friends,” “The Smell Saved My Life,” “Freaks,” “Fire Walk With Me,” “In My Head Till I’m Dead”

The duo Surf Curse carry a lot of similarities to the small, Los Angeles-back-alley venue they pay homage to on their album BUDS: The Smell. Both are a maelstrom of sweat, angst, and youth-driven aggression where many find refuge in during frustrating moments of their lives. BUDS is a captivating collection that will satisfy anyone with a love for lo-fi punk rock that have refused to grow up just yet.

If I had the ability to skateboard well and had the penchant to make videos showing off my nonexistent tricks, the track “Freaks” would be the soundtrack to my first video. The lyrics, inspired by the fantastic graphic novel BLACK HOLE, express the all too familiar feeling of youthful isolation: “My head aches filled with parasites / Black holes cover my eyes / I dream of you almost every night / hopefully I won’t wake up this time.” The simple, driving, looping guitar guitar riff paired with the assailing drum beats and rose-tinged lyrics make it a perfect adolescent anthem. Surf Curse forgo any sense of hiding their youthful nostalgia lyrically on “Ponyboy” (“Let’s go out / We’re still young / We can take my car . . . We can go / To our homes / Kill our parents / Hit the road”) and in spite of this, and many other tracks on BUDS, being poorly mixed and mastered, it is almost more fitting in its lackluster quality. It would be fairly jarring to listen to an album flying the banner for the teenage lifestyle so proudly while simultaneously having a polished corporate feel to it. [Will Turmon]

The good people of Crossfader Magazine.

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