A Closer Listen tends to be positive in its reviews, so sometimes it’s difficult to tell which releases we like more than others. This page lets you know what we’re listening to and enjoying the most.
Ben Lukas Boysen & Sebastian Plano ~ Everything (Erased Tapes)
One could write a term paper on David O’Reilly’s immersive single-player PS4 game and its accompanying 3+ hour score. When dealing with everything, one never runs out of things to say! But thankfully, school’s out for summer, which gives us the chance to enjoy both on their own merits. Everything is one of the year’s most fascinating triumphs ~ we recommend the clear vinyl edition, which comes with a game key and a digital download of all 43 tracks.
Various Artists ~ Sacred Spaces (Cities and Memory)
Over a hundred selections, half field recording and half soundscape, presented in pairs ~ choirs, organs, bells, prayer wheels, gongs, crickets, even the sound of vacuuming a church. The project is available as a site map and a series of podcasts; a culled sample of re-imaginings is available separately. This is a giant project, and remarkably, everything is free to download. Huge recommendation.
Tom Hobden & Eliot James ~ Roam (Village Green)
With years of pop experience under their belts (Noah & the Whale, Mumford & Sons, Kaiser Chiefs), Tom Hobden & Eliot James began to ask, “Where are the strings?” Frustrated at a lack of strings in pop music, they decided to make their own album ~ a set of instrumental pop with a modern composition twist. Or is it the other way around?
WhyOceans ~ Inmost Dens of Emilie (White Noise Records)
Quality post-rock is in short supply these days, but Macao’s WhyOceans is a breath of fresh air. By adding violin and flute, the band expands its timbre to near-orchestral proportions. Extra points for the circular die-cut cover!