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Old 12-19-2011, 02:56 PM   #4
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50.) Tune-Yards Ė w h o k i l l


Iím a big fan of pop music that takes risks, and this second album from Tune-Yards (aka Merril Garbus) certainly takes risks. Itís pop-rock constructed of sound loops: African rhythms and ukulele outbursts and guitars that fall and crumble apart like blocks from a game of Jenga. On top of the layered instrumentation is Garbusí own, eclectic voice. She has an expressive range that sortaí sounds like Janis Joplin meets Robert Plant meets that dude from Dirty Projectors. And thatís one of the flaws of this album Ė it is basically Dirty Projectors worship. If you can get past that, and if you can get past the grating & stupid lyrics, then this is one of the most ambitious and fun pop albums of the year.






49.) White Willow Ė Terminal Twilight


Iím a sucker for symphonic prog, especially bands who are fronted by women, and thatís what White Willow gives me. Nothing particularly original outside of a general heaviness (created not by guitar tone but by mood and drums and prevalence of vocal lines). Itís melodic and pleasant and not very obtrusive, which makes it one of my top albums this year to do work during. The best part about this album is how dynamic the synthesizers are. Thereís fat, warm synth sounds and cool, tinny synth sounds, and crackling, bottom-heavy synth sounds all on the same track, interplaying with each other. The clean & clear lead vocals slice through the drums and synth. Itís a very pretty record. A bit safe, but certainly enjoyable.


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