Guerilla Toss’s “Twisted Crystal” is a fun and confounding album. The band’s music is inventive and vibrant, with a bright-color palette and wild, abrasive melodies. These songs are at once lovable and slightly irritating, which I love; the melodies live in the interstice between great pop songs and unrelenting commercial jingles (see “Magic Is Easy” for a good example of this, it’s catchy but it also has an edge, a little wobble, something that’s off. Same with “Hacking Machine,” where Kassie Carlson sings “I think it’s sick/what do I know/computer worm or/a vi-a-rus” in such a way that those lyrics will stay in your brain until you die). “Twisted Crystal” is busy, cartoonish, lit-up—it’s got excess, filigree, ideas packed into every second, bursting with creativity. The album sticks with you, the songs stick with you.
“Green Apple” is a beautiful song that takes the form of a tornado, picking up new sounds every few seconds, whirling, advancing and retreating, leaving the earth, touching back down, then dissipating.
Do you like pensive, autumnal piano music? Do you like the look of wet pavement illuminated by streetlights? Are you a connoisseur of gray skies? Do you know your trees? Your elms and larches and conifers? Do you find the sight of a good moon stirring? Did you, as a child or in adulthood, rake leaves from a yard? Do you read through old emails and letters? If offered a cup of hot cider by a friend, would you drink it immediately or blow on the surface a few times before taking your first sip?
“Return,” by Dmitry Evgrafov, is an EP of compelling compositions, mostly piano, with some doctoring here and there. It’s a good fit for the fall, brisk and beautiful.
This is a beautiful song about naked, wild yearning, sung beautifully. It all builds from slow, tender strums and whispered declarations into crashing electric turbulence. “Need you/want you.” What a simple phrase to express a humble and real truth. Sometimes you need someone so badly, it feels as if you’re about to burst right out of your own body—this song effectively renders that feeling in musical form. Black Belt Eagle Scout’s album, “Mother of My Children,” is coming out soon, and judging by the handful of songs that have been released from it (“Just Lie Down” and “Indians Never Die” are both gorgeous too), it seems like it could be one of the albums of the year.