Alex Tedesco – Contempt (self released)
This is some weeeeird shit. You might remember Tedesco from his free album Future Strains a couple years back. Well, Pretty Lies doesn’t have much in common with that sonically, but it’s still free! Yeah, you definitely want to go download this. It’s some bizarre experimental pop, with Tedesco goin off the deep end, delivering a dark kitchen sink record with noise punk, anti-folk, electronics, every instrument he can get his hands on, and vocals that defy categorization, insanely deep & rich, like Morrissey singing opera, or maybe like some folk metal bards, very story like, and frequently depressing as hell with lyrics like “I’ll probably die alone but that’s not what I’m worried about. I’m worried about my soul.” This is weird on every level, but still rooted in pop, so there’s recognizable song structures and melodies and shit, even if there isn’t always a chorus to chime in with. It’s not an easy listen by any means, but 1) you like it that way and 2) this beast is free. Ain’t no reason for you to skip over this unless you’re feeling unadventurous, in which case, download it any way and save it for a rainy day.
Jakob Battick & Friends – Than Even The Night (self released)
So it has come to this, the final nail in the Jakob Battick & Friends coffin. Originally a limited physical release in 2010, Battick decided to re-release Painful Places for free on Bandcamp as a farewell. Well, this couldn’t be a more fitting finale as this is as fucking sad as it gets. Melancholic and bittersweet, stripped down to its bones, just a couple slow guitars with Battick and and his friends filling in the spaces with their voices, Battick’s rich & resonating, super intimate, like you’re right there with him in a cold, empty church attic. This is the bleakest, most minimal folk you’ve ever heard, Battick can take a few chords and turn them upside down, into something previously unknown, and his voice makes everything incredibly tragic but still uplifting, like he’s fucking Atlas with the weight of the world on his shoulders for infinity, singing to the world that there’s nothing to worry about ’cause he’s fucking got it, death, death, more death, and it’s all ok because nothing matters. So yeah, this is really fucking good, and there’s no reason you shouldn’t grab a gratis copy. Here’s hoping that Battick isn’t done making music and he’s just retiring the “Friends.” The world would certainly be worse off if he was done for good, so lets make this a public plea for more Battick creations. We (I) need it.
NEW GILES COREY SONG!! That’s all you need to know. Unless you need to know more, in which case…
Giles Corey is Dan Barrett, proprietor of Enemies List and Have A Nice Life wizard, he brings some olde dusty gloom, and in the case of “A Sleeping Heart,” he does so with a lone guitar and depressive as fuck vocals. The video goes back and forth between a bitchin retro car and Dan spilling his guts in a racquet ball court. It’s directed by Justin Donais, the same dude who made the HANL Live At The Stone DVD. The song comes from his upcoming full length debut, which is obviously one of the releases that you should be be as pumped as possible for this year.