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Alternative & Indie - Released March 6, 2020 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Electronic/Dance - Released February 21, 2020 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
Rising from the darkness of the Canadian rave scene at the start of the 2010s, Grimes quickly made her way up the ladder of success. Her synthetic hit Vanessa allowed her to amass a fanbase that was obsessed with her post-teenage voice and elfish look, and at the end of the 2010s, Pitchfork named Oblivion (written following a sexual assault and taken from her 2012 album Vision) the second-best song of the entire decade. It’s this kind of distinction that reminds us that she is an artist that knows exactly how to transcribe emotions into songs, and not just the girlfriend of multi-billionaire Elon Musk. Miss Anthropocene sees Grimes morph into a climate supervillain, a ‘goddess of plastic’ that’s here to take some of the heat off climate change. Musically, Grimes has not drastically changed, with a signature synth-pop sound that borrows from rock on My Name Is Dark, drum’n’bass on the excellent 4ÆM or trip-hop on So Heavy (I Fell Through the Earth), which reminds you of Massive Attack or Transglobal Underground. Well inspired, Grimes continues to hit the mark. © Smaël Bouaici/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 11, 2019 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Pitchfork: Best New Music
Less than six months after releasing their highly acclaimed third album, U.F.O.F., the Brooklyn indie-folk band Big Thief returns with Two Hands. While its Irish twin sounds incredibly controlled and labored over, the majority of Two Hands are one-take recordings (tracked live in the middle of a Texas desert) with no overdubs, capturing the arresting beauty of their live performances. Lead single "Not" is the loudest and most intense Big Thief song to date. Frontwoman Adrianne Lenker’s croon is pushed to a panting rasp during the track’s teetering climax, and its second half is overtaken by a gangly, drawn-out guitar solo gracelessly deconstructing into ringing noise. However, despite the crashing drum fill that kicks off the record, "Not"’s striking diversion from their signature serenity is the album’s only moment of its kind. The main difference is that here, Big Thief sound looser and less concerned with painstaking prettiness. Instead, they let the tape roll and see what happens. Perhaps the most commendable aspect is that even without the benefit of studio wizardry, this band can still make magic happen. © Eli Enis / Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released May 3, 2019 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
UFO we understand. But UFOF? The additional F is for Friends according to Big Thief. UFOs and friends then? The band’s singer Adrienne Laker gives us a loose explanation: “Making friends with the unknown… All my songs are about this” With the guitarist Buck Meek, the bassist Max Oleartchik and the drummer James Krivchenia, Laker releases her third album. The Brooklyn quartet’s music is a sort of folk mixed with indie rock. Without sounding too much like them, this 2019 album sometimes contains the DNA of Sonic Youth (such as on Jenni). The result is alluring, almost shimmering. But upon a closer look, “UFOF” is a bizarre and strange, almost abnormal record. And like the late Elliot Smith (Laker’s idol that one recalls on Betsy), the beautiful melodies and tremendously artisanal guitars hide an evident melancholy and unusual, unnerving situations. Perhaps that would explain the UFOs? A less ‘polished’ and luxurious record than Masterpiece (2016) and Capacity (2017), UFOF shows a group ready to question itself and evolve its art. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Electronic/Dance - Released November 6, 2015 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
Her album Visions illuminated 2012. With her 4th studio album Art Angels, Grimes succeeds once again - excelling in the field of electro pop and ferverish eclecticism. This time the Canadian rounds off a few more angles, producing a range of melodies that are undeniably more 'pop', but also irresistibly catchy. The result is a diluted and diverse experience compared with past efforts, but without losing her unique identity and artistic singularity. Indeed, Grimes does not do electro pop like her counterparts. Each song from Art Angels comes with a slight twist or the vital dose of quirkiness necessary to makes it a fascinating composition. Note the presence of Janelle Monáe on one of the tracks. © MD / Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 16, 2015 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
Two years after Monomania, Bradford Cox and his band of merry men sign off their seventh album, which offers some radical, altogether new perspectives for Deerhunter. The group, hailing from Atlanta, Georgia, originally drew us towards their sonic chloroform through an amazing melodic mastery. Their shoegaze guitars fascinated, hailing, above all, from the great Irish group My Bloody Valentine. This dreamlike, hypnotic brand of rock is still, more or less, on the Fading Frontier programme. But Cox diverges by giving in to a more purified pop sensibility this time around. Deerhunter have not sold their soul to the devil; in fact, the fundamentals of the group are so strong, that these melodic addendums could never alter the core DNA of the music. In this respect, the insane and very groovy single ‘Snakeskin’ shows off this perfect balance. In short, we might ask, has the serious car accident (and narrow escape from death) of the Deerhunter frontman mellowed this charismatic, formerly vitriolic leader? Impossible to say… Anyway, Fading Frontier confirms that Deerhunter remain one of the most interesting American indie-rock groups of the past decade. © MD/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 16, 2015 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
Two years after Monomania, Bradford Cox and his band of merry men sign off their seventh album, which offers some radical, altogether new perspectives for Deerhunter. The group, hailing from Atlanta, Georgia, originally drew us towards their sonic chloroform through an amazing melodic mastery. Their shoegaze guitars fascinated, hailing, above all, from the great Irish group My Bloody Valentine. This dreamlike, hypnotic brand of rock is still, more or less, on the Fading Frontier programme. But Cox diverges by giving in to a more purified pop sensibility this time around. Deerhunter have not sold their soul to the devil; in fact, the fundamentals of the group are so strong, that these melodic addendums could never alter the core DNA of the music. In this respect, the insane and very groovy single ‘Snakeskin’ shows off this perfect balance. In short, we might ask, has the serious car accident (and narrow escape from death) of the Deerhunter frontman mellowed this charismatic, formerly vitriolic leader? Impossible to say… Anyway, Fading Frontier confirms that Deerhunter remain one of the most interesting American indie-rock groups of the past decade.
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Electronic/Dance - Released May 18, 2015 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
Just as Holly Herndon's debut album Movement had abundant layers in its title alone, its follow-up Platform is just as nuanced in how it combines political, technological, and structural and ideological concepts into a single word. She explores all of these ideas in thought-provoking and unsettling ways that expand on Movement's fragmented, ethereal approach. On tracks such as "Chorus," which was made from samples of Herndon's Internet browsing; "Home," a breathy piece of pop inspired by NSA surveillance, and the eerily erotic sketch "Lonely at the Top," she blurs the line between intimacy and invasiveness, providing commentary on the way humanity and technology interact that elevates Platform into a true work of art. © Heather Phares /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 17, 2014 | 4AD

Hi-Res Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 17, 2014 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released May 6, 2013 | 4AD

Distinctions 4F de Télérama - 5/6 de Magic - Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released August 20, 2012 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 7, 2011 | 4AD

Distinctions 3F de Télérama - Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 12, 2011 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music - Sélection Les Inrocks
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Alternative & Indie - Released May 9, 2011 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 18, 2011 | 4AD

Distinctions Pitchfork: Best New Music - Sélection Les Inrocks
Merill Garbus' home-made patchwork of recordings and loops was so crucial to the success of her first tUnE-yArDs album, Bird Brains, that it seemed like lo-fi sounds were integral to her style. However, she recorded the songs that became W H O K I L L in a professional studio with an engineer and a crew of musicians, and the results are not only as vital and distinctive as what came before, they find Garbus coming into her own. Instead of confining herself to conventionally nice-sounding arrangements and techniques, Garbus sounds like a kid in a candy store, exhilarated by all the possibilities afforded to her. As on Bird Brains, she makes noise-pop of a completely different flavor. She tosses jazz, folk, R&B, hip-hop and whatever else strikes her fancy into fascinating collisions that are as melodic as they are abrasive, and as globally minded as they are distinctly urban. “Gangsta” is a dense crush of brass and beats topped with sirens and samples that make it sound like it’s unfolding on the street, while “Bizness”'s rippling layers evoke a futuristic hybrid of gamelan and Afro-pop. It’s Garbus' voice, however, that defines W H O K I L L. One moment, her singing is so unbridled it sounds like field recordings. The next, she hits a remarkable high note or turns a phrase with a torchy lilt like she does on “Powa,” where she sounds sexy, innocent, and demanding all at once. Her messages come through even louder and clearer than they did on Bird Brains, and they’re just as bold and complicated as their surroundings. Throughout the album, Garbus tackles violence, power and identity, shaping “America” into a love-hate anthem of her own on “My Country” and confessing her secret feelings about a policeman on “Riotriot”: “You had come to put handcuffs on my brother/I dreamt of making love to you.” Yet as clearly as she sees danger and corruption, she still leaves room for hope and innocence on the dark, delicate lullaby “Woollywollygong.” W H O K I L L is a tour de force of sounds and ideas that are as intimate as a conversation and as striking as a manifesto, and shows that Garbus is capable of just about anything. © Heather Phares /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 27, 2010 | 4AD

Distinctions 5/6 de Magic - The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Pitchfork: Best New Music
Inspired by the flyer culture of punk and college rock bands of the '70s and '80s, Deerhunter introduced Halcyon Digest with an "interactive Xerox art project" in which fans photocopied an old-school flyer made by Bradford Cox, pasted it around their towns, photographed it, and sent the results back to the band. Besides being a clever viral strategy to drum up interest for the album, it speaks to the way Deerhunter approaches how fleeting and important memories can be on these songs. Given how prolific Cox and crew have been together -- and separately, with his Atlas Sound project and Lockett Pundt's Lotus Plaza -- since 2007's Cryptograms, it's not surprising that they took this opportunity to look back. Halcyon Digest reveals a quieter, sometimes gentler Deerhunter than expected, and while Cox doesn't exactly sound tired, there's an occasional rasp in his voice that wasn't there before. Instead of emphasizing sonics that spiral out into the stratosphere as they did on Microcastle or Rainwater Cassette Exchange, the band focuses on the dream part of their dream pop. Halcyon Digest gets off to a sleepy start with "Earthquake," where sluggish beats, looping guitars, and reminiscences of "waking up on a dirty couch" feel like being awoken from a dream, or maybe going deeper into one. "Sailing" is a reverie on a pier, so whispered and intimate that it sounds like it belongs on a Cox solo album. Despite its delicacy, Halcyon Digest is some of Deerhunter's most down-to-earth music, and offers some of the band's most thoughtful songwriting. Cox is more interested in playing with layers of nostalgia than layers of sound, expressing his yearning by channeling the music of youth and rebellion of decades past. "Don't Cry" and "Basement Scene" evoke the eternally teenage sound of the Everly Brothers, filtered through a fever dream; the excellent "Memory Boy" cherishes "the smell of loose-leaf joints on jeans" with sparkling Anglophilic '60s pop. This may also be Deerhunter's most emotionally varied album, spanning the jubilant sax on the Strokes-like "Coronado" to "Helicopter"'s heartbreaking chamber pop, which embodies the lonely side of memories. The band saves just enough room for two quintessentially Deerhunter tracks: Pundt's gorgeous "Desire Lines" is a standout, taking flight halfway through into a glorious guitar excursion, while the transporting final track, "He Would Have Laughed," is all the more poignant for its dedication to Jay Reatard. It's not as immediate as previous Deerhunter albums, but Halcyon Digest has an appeal all its own: It's as difficult to grasp -- and as hard to shake -- as a memory lingering at the back of your brain. © Heather Phares /TiVo

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