Wizard – Definitely Unfinished
French noise rockers Wizard released an arguably finished EP in early June titled Definitely Unfinished. At three minutes under thirty and five tracks, it’s got enough room to showcase the band’s progression since their 2018 eponymous debut. Wizard the first was already an utterly satisfying experience, but Definitely Unfinished brings an undeniable touch of refinement to the mix. The band’s new sound overflows with drive and energy on unforgettable songs that will spin more than once more, I promise!
Mdou Moctar – Afrique Victime (Matador)
Mdou Moctar‘s blend of Nigerian-Saharan music and blues-rock has checked a lot of boxes for me to like it. On Afrique Victime, you’ll find some microrhythms and rhythmic modulations as well as the idiosyncratic playing style of Moctar himself on the guitar. Supporting him is a small but varied cast of musicians that play the role expertly. All of this makes for a particularly exquisite and, for the average Western reader of this website, quite exotic experience!
Kick the Cat – Gurgle
Similarities are countless—The Aristocrats, Panzerballett, Planet X, Consider the Source, and many more—but Kick the Cat ultimately is its own beast. The Chicago quartet plays progressive metal with a heavy blues and jazz background seeping through. Unsurprisingly, you can therefore find herein an impressive display of talent and skill from every band member, and the compositional skills of the group are not to be overlooked either. Gurgle is a great album to have if you can’t have enough of this kind of music!
Unstoppable Sweeties Show – Analogy to an Allergy
What an ambitious album this is! At seventy minutes long—and that includes one thirty-minute odyssey!—Analogy to an Allergy consists of many short tracks and a few long ones, but each represents a different experiment, and the lot a remarkably varied one! Liverpool’s Unstoppable Sweeties Show call themselves an “avant-garde punk” band, and I’m not going to argue against that. There’s definitely the experimentation and unorthodoxy of the avant-garde, and the rejection of the norm of the punk, which, ironically, conform to a new anti-norm. Yes, we’ve already heard bands go way out in many directions and try “new” things, but who doesn’t appreciate a brilliantly executed middle finger to the establishment? A middle finger is a middle finger, and this album is amazing!