Philly Department

Great Thunder – Dishes in the Sink

Great Thunder – You’re Welcome


Recommended if you like single pieces of unanticipated toast given to you at breakfast. Or if you like someone putting their blanketed feet in your lap. Or domestic collaboration of any variety: manual dishwashing, mattress flipping, exquisite caulking, or day-long sessions of wall painting.

So “Dishes in the Sink” is a river of fuzz, a casually great song by a neighborhood band. And “You’re Welcome” is something else–Katie Crutchfield (Waxahatchee) and a piano. Her voice, which is like seven voices in one–it has facets, sounds rougher than on Cerulean Salt, a little more in the air here. The whole Great Thunder album is like this, with surprising minute-long gems, varying moods, behind-the-scenes peeks, all homemade.

[BUY Sounds of Great Thunder]

Muir Beach Woods Ocean

Saturday Looks Good To Me – Empty Beach

A false song. Familiar components—shining guitar, reverb, a beautiful voice—served alongside strange sentiments. “Empty Beach” is a man, walking in his neighborhood on a sunny day, feeling good about life (got some solid yardwork done, thinking about making steaks on the grill for dinner, wife: happy, kids: happy), whistling, and then a sinkhole opens up, he falls into it, and a meteor smashes into the sinkhole, obliterating the man, his happiness, and his aspirations for steak. “Empty Beach” is a song that’s bigger on the inside than it is on the outside, pretty and desolate simultaneously.

[BUY One Kiss Ends It All. It’s wonderful]


The Proper Ornaments released a song a while back called “You Still,” (which I wrote about here) a perfect little track, strong on melody, delicate and memorable. “You Still” will occasionally pop into my head apropos of nothing, even if I haven’t listened to it in months; it has a mysterious persistence that you wouldn’t normally associate with such a quiet, unassuming song. Because of all that, I’ve been waiting to hear more from them, and now comes the news that the band are releasing a single, to be followed by an album later in the summer.

“Waiting For The Summer” is catchy, of course, and like the aforementioned “You Still,” will no doubt stay stuck in your head for a while after you’ve listened to it. The vibe of this song brings to (my) mind something like the cover photo for Belle & Sebastian’s “3..6..9 Seconds of Light,” it’s all brightness, subtle detail, warm smiles, intimations of beachside happenings. [Also wonderful is the B-side, “Candy,” which is another supremely gorgeous miniature, like a densely compressed version of The Village Green Preservation Society]

[BUY Waiting For The Summer]