Heartbreaking Bravery

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Tag: american poetry club

The Best Records of Q3 (2019)

22 excellent records were released between June and August. While no posts went up on this site about those records in that time, there’s a remedy: a compilation of all of those titles. Basement punk demos, intimate folk epics, adventurous rap odysseys, and quite a few spaces between those triangular points comprise this particular field. Due to time constraints, these will be presented without any additional context but don’t let that aspect of this post distract from some truly incredible releases. Dive in below.

Lost Balloons – Numb (Stream)

Over the first four days of this week Grim Streaker, american poetry club, Hazel English, Ben Kastner, Wyatt Blair, Chastity Belt, See Through Dresses, Leather Girls, Big Thief, Clairo, The Baby Shakes, Terror Watts, and unhappybirthday have all unleashed outstanding songs. They weren’t the only ones, either. Lost Balloons joined in on the fun with the typically excellent “Numb”.

A project comprised of The Marked Men/Radioactivity‘s Jeff Burke and Blotto/Suspicious Beasts‘ Yusuke Okada, Lost Balloons excels in acoustic-driven basement pop, retaining all of the urgency, bite, and melodic sensibilities of the duo’s earlier projects and shaping into something less overtly aggressive. “Numb” is a perfect example of this formula, its energy seeping through the softer trappings and proving to be as infectious as anything in either songwriter’s discography. Hook after hook proves to be sharp and as soon as its over, there’s already an immediate instinct to go back to the beginning. Trust that instinct, hit repeat, and let the cycle wear itself out years down the line.

Listen to “Numb” below and pre-order Hey Summer here.

american poetry club – glad to be here, etcetera (EP Review)

In the past week Wendell Borton, Side Eye, Detenzione, Sarah Shook and the Disarmers, Puppy Problems, Soft Fangs/Bellows, Kindling, moshimoss/stabilo, Wilsen, and GRLMIC all unveiled full streams of various types of records. The landmark Our First 100 Days compilation also came to its natural conclusion. On the quieter, less-publicized side of things, american poetry club’s glad to be here, etcetera — packaged with I Love to Surf’s Mantras as a split EP release — was also made available to the public.

A deeply felt bedroom pop recording from Jordan Weinstock (who runs the excellent It Takes Time Records), glad to be here, etcetera is the sound of creative restlessness. Collaborators trickle in, a sample gets used, and one lonely narrative after another crops up. There’s a lot of resentment present in glad to be here, etcetera, typically manifesting in self-deprecation or self-loathing (and never as strongly as it does on the EP’s closing track) but there are softer moments scattered throughout, specifically “how i felt about most things”, which boasts a simplistic but oddly affecting video that’s premiering right here:

More than any other song on glad to be here, etcetera, this one feels complete. Fully formed, deeply felt, and brimming with genuine emotion, “how i felt about most things” grapples with a much larger scale than most of the other songs on the record. Instead of just introspection, it’s a meditation on love, familial love, mortality, aging (and being forced to age), and a handful of other weighty topics. It’s easily the strongest composition on the record (the piano figure at the end is the EP’s loveliest moment) and it suggests Weinstock will be saying a lot more things with american pooetry club in the future. A gorgeous moment on a very strong EP, “how i felt about most things” affirms one basic truth: glad to be here, etcetera is worthy of any serious collection.

Listen to glad to be here, etcetera below and pick it up here.