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Maps & Atlases, Battles, Dry the River [week's Top Releases]

Posted on the 18 April 2012 by Thewildhoneypie @thewildhoneypie

topreleases MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

apr17best MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

All the bands we think you should listen to this week have at least one thing in common with another on the list.

1 — Thery’re British (therefore automatically awesome).
2 — It’s been too long since we’ve had new material from them.
3 — They have math rock tendencies.
4 — New, poppier songs are not what we’re used to hearing from them.
5 — They’re just basically awesome all around.

Can you tell which is which?

shallow bed MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

New Ceremony – Dry the River // Buy

Many American music fans have already caught on to the folk rock sounds of London’s Dry The River (@drytheriver), so they’ll be surprised to learn that the band is only just now dropping their debut LP Shallow Bed. It’s been out for about a month across the pond, but this week we’re finally getting a proper US release. Shallow Bed is a Mumford & Sons derivative, with lead singer Peter Liddle’s falsetto floating nicely above more traditional instrumental arrangements, deep within an American roots groove. How can so many Brits can easily showcase the beauty of what is truly a uniquely American art form? It’s doesn’t matter, just listen to this record.

maps MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

Some bands use new albums as an exercise to push themselves out of their comfort zone and see what sticks. Particularly with the release of Beware and Be GratefulMaps & Atlases (@mapsnatlases) have proven to follow this path. Originally labeled a math rock project, Maps & Atlases began introducing new instruments and recording techniques as time progressed, pulling them away from their signature syncopated rhythms towards a more approachable, mainstream definition. This sound evolution was extremely gradual and almost unnoticeable until you listen to a song from their more aggressive 2005 EPs right before a cut off Beware And Be Grateful. Purist Map & Atlases fans may feel a bit betrayed and/or tricked by this stealth genre shift, but sometimes it’s a lot of fun to listen to a band discover Casio keyboards and use them to launch themselves into a new, trendy territory.

battles MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

Wall Street (Gui Boratto Remix) – Battles // Buy

More math rock? Yes please. As a follow-up to their 2007 debut MirroredBattles (@battles) dropped Gloss Drop (say that 5 times fast) in June of last year. Perhaps in order to make up for that lost time between 2007 and 2011, the band quickly proceeded with an album comprised exclusively of remixed tracks off of Gloss Drop. Appropriately titled, Dross Glop sees artists like Shabbaz Places and Hudson Mohawke take over Gloss Drop tracks and make them completely their own.

spitirualized MAPS & ATLASES, BATTLES, DRY THE RIVER [WEEKS TOP RELEASES]

Another group that waited a while between album cycles are the drone-y Brits of Spiritualized (@officialspzd), but they can certainly get away with it. Definitely among the older indie rock crowd, Spiritualized has plenty of experience in the music biz and holds a special place in the hearts of many fans for the masterpiece that was 1997′s Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space. Frontman Jason Pierce admits that the bulk of Sweet Heart Sweet Life was inspired by playing Ladies and Gentlemen in it’s entirety for many years. Regarding the new stuff, he said things were looking far more poppy than anything the band has done before.


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