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matthew dear / backstroke / spectral

The ultra-prolific Matthew Dear has released a new mini-album just seven months after his fantastic Leave Luck to Heaven; Backstroke picks up where he left off. On the last album there were a few tracks that featured vocals ala the incredible Prince inspired "Dog Days." This mini-album takes what was first started there and raises the bar. Most of the tracks on Backstroke are vocal driven, danceable pop gems that can be played both in the club and in a live setting. The track "Tide" features a funky shuffle beat with Matthew's deadpan vocals singing over the top and it is well worth the price of this album alone...truly amazing! Track 4, entitled "Grut Wall," could be mistaken for a song off of the Junior Boys album; it is a perfect electronic pop song. Matthew ends the record on a high note with the eight-plus-minute house jam "And in the Night," which starts like the perfect tech-house anthem. Then Matthew pulls a 180 and the song transforms into the weirdest pop track of the album with vocals and beats going every which way; it's hard to keep up. Matthew, you have done it again!!
listen: matthew dear / grut wall
listen: matthew dear / and in the night

lali puna / micronomic ep / morr

Lali Puna have released a five-track EP of their single "Micronomic," and it also includes a video of that song. "Micronomic," from the Faking the Books album, has a definite indie rockist feel...laptop (early) Blonde Redhead? Almost. It teeters nicely between having bursts of driving guitars, swelling keyboard drones and worn-out sounding snare hits and having skittering guitar melodies and driving loops. Speaking of teetering, it sounds like they are over standing politely behind their instruments. It's easy to imagine them flailing and thrusting guitars all over the stage. The Boom Bip remix is very nicely constructed of small chapters. Small acoustic loops segue into a slowly rising groove that peaks with a distorted crackly, overdriven sample of the chorus, "Where do you want to go…?" Track 3,"The Daily Match" and track 4, "Alienation" (Alias remix) are a return to Tridecoder form -- introspective, sweet, lilting and melancholic.
listen: lali puna / the daily match