Bandcamp Picks of the Week 1/13/16

Bandcamp is a dense swamp of music with lots of incredible content lurking in the muck. Luckily, you’ve got the Crossfader music staff diligently hacking through the weeds every week to bring you promising new EPs and LPs available for your listening pleasure with Bandcamp Picks of the Week.

bandcamp picks of the week

L.M.I. – L.M.I. III

Genre: Hardcore Punk, Post-Hardcore

Favorite Tracks: “Shallow Depths,” “Edge of Time”

L.M.I.’s been picking up steam recently in the local East Coast scene, and their most recent EP, 2015’s L.M.I. III, is a perfect example as to why. Self-described as “punk,” the quotation marks serve as a signifier for the multiple subgenres the trio incorporate in order to craft a sound much more unique than the copy-paste antics of many modern “scene” bands. Although hardcore is the most readily identifiable influence (take for instance the electrifying opener “Shallow Depths”), angular post-punk is a regular co-conspirator (“Debt,” “No Casket”), the occasional fuzzed-out, desert-influenced guitar solo (“No Casket”) justifies the “stoner” tag the band employs, and when the distortion drops out things begin to feel almost like shoegaze (“Follow the Mirror”). Possessing an impressive propensity for effortless rhythm shifts and longer-form instrumental jams (“Edge of Time”), L.M.I. III is a stellar five-track that manages to be both accessible and inventive. You can stream and buy the album here. [Thomas Seraydarian]

bandcamp picks of the week

Sarah Elizabeth Charles – INNER DIALOGUE

Genre: Vocal Jazz

Favorite Tracks: “White and Blue,” “Choucoune” 

Think jazz vocals stopped being interesting when Nina Simone went into decline? Well, you’re wrong, and Sarah Elizabeth Charles is here to prove it to you. With co-production by the versatile and immensely talented Christian Scott (who crafted one of our favorite albums of 2015), the album bleeds and bends through a dizzying array of jazz modes, carried entirely by Charles’ smooth and entrancing voice. She has a remarkable ability to use a clearly impeccably trained voice as an instrument to emote on a wide range. Christian Scott phrased it perfectly in the notes for the album: “She instantly rids the listener of uncertainty of meaning, principally through her willingness to be vulnerable and to diligently hone her craft, creating a great uniqueness.” Even when she sings in touches of creole (her father is Haitian, and contributes a few arrangements here), the listener always knows exactly how she feels, and what she wants you to feel with her. You can stream and buy INNER DIALOGUE here. [Carter Moon]

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