Singles Club: Arbor Labor Union + Donna Blue + The Gloomies
If you've ever wondered what "cosmic American music" might happen to sound like these days, wonder no more. Just give Arbor Labor Union's "Crushed by Fear Destroyer" a listen. There's a little chooglin' and a little freaking out and a little bit of sharp riffs and some wacky tabacky smoke on the water, and man alive does it all sound mighty fine together. Even without the Nudie suits, Arbor Labor Union has my attention. This is some tasty psychedelic post-punk, and I am definitely here for it.
Amsterdam duo Donna Blue wouldn't have sounded out of place among the vintage doo wop ditties of the 50s and 60s, though "Billy" is more than brokenhearted tears on a pillow. There's something knowing, petulant, and a bit naughty hiding in Danique van Kesteren's smoky, coquettish vocals, and there's nothing fluffy about the song's penetrating guitar. Whoever this "Billy" is, I doubt he'll be able to resist for long.
The Gloomies, Andy Craig's Southern California creation, wears its home coast well on new song "Sideways." From the forthcoming LP ARE WE GETTING BETTER?, "Sideways" retains a vibrant, glistening seaside glow while Craig ruminates on things that are anything but carefree. The song feels intimate while also expanding into an infinite sonic horizon. A nuanced, thoughtful song, and one I suggest you listen to a lot more often than just once.