Dead Robot – We Create the Machine
This EP is, surprisingly, the first release of Madrid’s Dead Robot. Why surprisingly? Well, to use a metaphor… The Spanish trio has apparently hit the nail right on its head on the first try and hammered it deep into the wood. A modern jazz fusion album with hints of drum & bass and electro-jazz is not an easy feat to succeed. But there is absolutely no doubt of that here. Take some time and listen to any of these songs, you won’t regret it.
Ben Levin Group – Jelly Mound
The latest effort of Bent Knee mastermind Ben Levin just arrived. The EP-length album is a true gem of progressive rock: meandering, eccentric, and slightly experimental yet not so much that it becomes too foreign, bizarre, or unmemorable. It is quite the opposite indeed, especially with the song “Thank Death”, in my opinion. In the end, Jelly Mound is a big lot of fun!
The Odious – Vesica piscis
Portland’s progressive death metal band The Odious is one of the first bands I talked about on this blog (I think it’s fair to say the blog went through some improvement over that time), so there’s some deeper bond between their music and me. Vesica piscis is the band’s first album in almost seven years. Over that time, they too underwent some improvements. In short, their upcoming album is pretty great and diverse, so watch out for it on June 21st.
Those Darn Gnomes – Calling Whitetails to a Tuned Bow (Nefarious Industries)
Though there is not much to show for it yet, Those Darn Gnomes‘s upcoming full-length is one to keep an eye or three out for. Calling Whitetails to a Tuned Bow addresses some of my criticism of their 2016 album The Zodiac, namely going for an infinitely improved production value. Still, the new one is far from sterile, and it keeps a nice dirty edge that also makes their sound unique in another way. Other than that, the improvisation-fuelled avant-garde noisegrind quartet and its myriad of additional musicians has crafted one of the most remarkable albums of the year already, and it’s out on June 28th!
잠비나이 (Jambinai) – 온다 (Onda) (Bella Union)
The Seoul-based band 잠비나이 (Jambinai) has always been about merging traditional Korean music and modern genres. Their previous releases, although pretty good in their own regards, failed to hook me completely. On 온다 (Onda), however, it seems that their muse helped them find a brilliant balance of sounds, as well as a plethora of great melodies, progressions, and atmospheres. This album sees the traditional music take on a post-rock disguise, and it actually lends it more power and importance than would have either on their own. 온다 (Onda) is a beautiful and cathartic album, and I think it’s important to give it one chance by listening to it.
Les comptes de Korsakoff – Nos amers (Label Puzzle)
I was totally surprised and impressed by my first listen of French band Les comptes de Korsakoff‘s Nos amers. It seems they have an evil joy in luring you somewhere before revealing that you are in fact in a totally different place. As foundation, the octet relies a lot on narration and storytelling. Built around this is a majestic, varied, and always on-point soundtrack that is hard to categorize. It goes from post-rock to progressive jazz to hardcore as the story commands, and thus truly acts as a soundtrack, primarily. Definitely an album that flew below the radar of many people and outlets, and that’s a shame!