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Alternative & Indie - To be released February 26, 2021 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 21, 2021 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released December 10, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Obaro Ejimiwe is still sleepless and sounds every bit the part on the fifth Ghostpoet album, his first since 2017's Dark Days + Canapés. Lethargy and lack of projection notwithstanding, he's cognizant enough to transmit his ever-harrowing thoughts, wishing for death, quoting pro-Brexit demonstrators, and acknowledging "I was once your Superman, now I'm just bones" with mystifying impassivity. Sour paralysis is conveyed in almost every track, whether the target is narcissism, materialism, or racism. The energy increases only when Ejimiwe is at his most defiant on "Nowhere to Hide Now" (with the returning Delilah Holliday providing whispered background vocals) and the title song, the only cut that could be termed a rocker, as all else crawls and slinks. Even with its uneasy strings and variety of keyboards, the sound is starker in comparison to the previous Ghostpoet LP. It's less reliant upon electronics with a stronger emphasis on the razor-sharp interplay between drummer Fabian Prynn and bassist Tom Herbert -- both holdovers from the previous album -- and guitarist Benjamin Markham, who breaks occasionally from circular and shadowy supporting rhythms to deal out liberally reverbed lashings. While the album's cover deliberately recalls Henry Fuseli's The Nightmare, it wouldn't look out of place between copies of Joy Division's Closer and Associates' Sulk. Like those two post-punk touchstones, I Grow Tired But Dare Not Fall Asleep has a despairing seductive power. © Andy Kellman /TiVo
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Rock - Released November 27, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

Back in the early '80s, when extended dance mixes were crossing over from the late-'70s disco scene into mainstream pop music, the idea was particularly embraced by the British dance-pop acts of the time. Among the most ardent remixers circa 1982 were Duran Duran, who always dubbed their extended remixes/re-recordings "night versions." Nearly a quarter-century later, Belgian dance-rock conceptualists Soulwax borrowed that bit of pop culture ephemera as the title of their remix project Nite Versions. Radical dance-oriented remixes and reconstructions of tracks from Soulwax's 2005 album, Any Minute Now, Nite Versions is an unabashed celebration of the sound of early-'80s dance mixes, with ironic samples ("NY Lipps" blatantly lifts Lipps Inc.'s cheesetastic masterpiece "Funkytown" for all of its main hooks) and regular use of all of the clichés of the era. This isn't just a sarcastic joke, however; both due to Soulwax's natural talents and to their obvious affection for the style they're working in, Nite Versions is a fluffy, frivolous, but utterly enjoyable listen. © Stewart Mason /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 26, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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House - Released October 30, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 29, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 23, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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A songwriter/composer who has alternated between albums of intimate indie rock, piano-based chamber sketches (Romantic Works), experimental electronic music (Behaving), and instrumental orchestral works (Six Lethargies), Monument finds Keaton Henson back in singer/songwriter mode and with his father's worsening health weighing heavily on his mind. (Henson's father died two days before the album's completion following a long illness.) It's a vulnerable set steeped in longing and memory, with recurring audio from home-video recordings contributing to its memoir-like feel. The album opens with tracking distortion from one such childhood clip before the audio clarifies on a song called "Ambulance." After about ten seconds, gentle, broken guitar chords enter alongside what sounds like manipulated keyboard or string samples and Henson's fragile delivery of the lines, "I'll wait 'til there's nothing left of me/Oh no, how lonely I'll be." Bass drum, tambourine, and clarified keys eventually join the arrangement, which expands to include meandering bass and atmospheric guitar. Most of the tracks consist of similarly sparse yet textured arrangements, though songs like "While I Can" and "Husk" venture into more assertive indie rock territory. The hooky "While I Can" declares an intent to live in the present, while the relatively tuneful "Husk" diverges into romantic concerns. These tracks, while still emotionally heavy, offer respite to what would otherwise be a relentlessly whispery, aching set, as do the artfully deployed natural sounds. While Monument is decidedly Henson's, guests of note include Radiohead's Philip Selway on drums, composer Charlotte Harding on saxophone, and Leo Abrahams on guitar. © Marcy Donelson /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 16, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 19, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 12, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released July 3, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

Obaro Ejimiwe is still sleepless and sounds every bit the part on the fifth Ghostpoet album, his first since 2017's Dark Days + Canapés. Lethargy and lack of projection notwithstanding, he's cognizant enough to transmit his ever-harrowing thoughts, wishing for death, quoting pro-Brexit demonstrators, and acknowledging "I was once your Superman, now I'm just bones" with mystifying impassivity. Sour paralysis is conveyed in almost every track, whether the target is narcissism, materialism, or racism. The energy increases only when Ejimiwe is at his most defiant on "Nowhere to Hide Now" (with the returning Delilah Holliday providing whispered background vocals) and the title song, the only cut that could be termed a rocker, as all else crawls and slinks. Even with its uneasy strings and variety of keyboards, the sound is starker in comparison to the previous Ghostpoet LP. It's less reliant upon electronics with a stronger emphasis on the razor-sharp interplay between drummer Fabian Prynn and bassist Tom Herbert -- both holdovers from the previous album -- and guitarist Benjamin Markham, who breaks occasionally from circular and shadowy supporting rhythms to deal out liberally reverbed lashings. While the album's cover deliberately recalls Henry Fuseli's The Nightmare, it wouldn't look out of place between copies of Joy Division's Closer and Associates' Sulk. Like those two post-punk touchstones, I Grow Tired But Dare Not Fall Asleep has a despairing seductive power. © Andy Kellman /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 24, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 12, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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A Quickening is the debut studio album from singer/songwriter and ex-Maccabees frontman Orlando Weeks. Following the more experimental, soothing direction of singles "Blood Sugar" and "Safe in Sound," the project sees Weeks reflect on his newfound fatherhood through an ethereal set of tracks. The album was released via PIAS in June of 2020. © David Crone /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 11, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 8, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 26, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 18, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 17, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 13, 2020 | Play It Again Sam

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