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Psych





Lake Ruth's psychedelic pop transcends the decades, live at Elsewhere 10.18

Bore from a hodgepodge of influences—most notably '60s psychedelia, new wave, and vintage pop—New York’s Lake Ruth lay down a timeless bop on new single “Extended Leave.” The core backbone of the track, its analog, resonant saw lead, creates an industrial sound, one that runs counter to vocalist Allison Brice’s (The Eighteenth Day of May, The Silver Abduction) esoteric, tripped-happy lyricism. The cognitive dissonance of these two moving parts contributes to what makes “Extended Leave” such an engrossing listen, something akin to reading the work of Ram Dass in an abandoned East German factory, made all the better by the instrumental contributions of Hewson Chen (The New Lines) and percussionist Matt Schultz (Holy Fuck, Enon, SAVAK). Stream it below, and catch Lake Ruth at Elsewhere on October 18th, supporting Luna. -Connor Beckett McInerney, Photo by Sasha Maese

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4Vesta release digital EP, feature track “Evening Star”

Brooklyn dreampop band 4Vesta recently released their digital EP “Light & Chemicals,” underscoring the timeless appeal and continuing influence of a style created in the early 1990s on emerging musicians nearly 30 years later. Featured opening track “Evening Star” (streaming below) serves as an homage to the pitch-bended, layered guitars and submerged vocals on Kevin Shields' MBV masterpiece “Loveless.” In fact, the songs title hearkens back to the guitar-looped ambience of Fripp & Eno's 1975 album of the same name. The NYC band's new single moves at a deliberately melancholic pace before exploding into forceful walls of guitars and voices. More discernable male vocals appear on “Full Spectrum” approximating Neil Halstead's low-key approach with Slowdive. “Autophase” doubles-down on the warped and warbly atmosphere, striking a middle ground between Colm O'Ciosig's Loveless contribution “Touched” and some of Ringo Deathstarr's recent output. Final track “Sea Plastic” serves up a five minute meditation on churning guitar textures, ethereal vocals and distant percussion. The EP is available for streaming on Spotify. - Dave Cromwell

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Won Ton Death merges past and future in new record "Bean"

Williamstown, Massachusetts’ Won Ton Death is not your typical find: his music is an irresistible and rare merger between past and future. Jake Gagne (Won Ton Death) puts together exotic tracks that are glazed with melancholy and draw from ‘80s dream-pop elements. The songs flash electronic patterns only made possible by today’s sophisticated music-making programs. The production is crisp, but the mood is that of lo-fi intimacy and secluded artistry escaping the bedroom. Bordering on neo-psychedelia, Won Ton’s latest album Bean features exquisite tracks like "Jailbreak at Doubting Castle," a song that is a true carnival of varying drum patterns, swelling atmospheric sounds, and robot-like noises. The fast and furious punk-like ending of the track is just the type of surprises you can expect in Bean. Gagne flirts with dance music in “A Letter from Bean” and reveals his commitment to having a good time in the recording process. Won Ton Death is drawing appeal from all the places he can find it, and that is excellent. Listen to the entrancing track “Dung” streaming below. - Rene Cobar





Half Stack's New EP, Aw Hell

Country-twinged rock group Oakland’s Half Stack just released their latest EP, Aw Hell. The collection features four tunes that showcase the group’s lovely picking, twangy guitars and lyrics that are at times sad, at times funny. Self-described “choogle” and psychedelic rock, Half Stack is worth a good listen. -Lucille Faulkner





Liam Benzvi channels pop songwriting through psych synth, plays The Dance 10.24

“It’s your birthday in heaven,” Brooklyn-based alternative pop artist Liam Benzvi croons over tactile synth arpeggios and ambient waves on forthcoming extended play Amnesia, USA. It’s a nice encapsulation of what makes Benzvi’s artistry an engrossing listen; there’s a penchant for high melodramatic songwriting that wouldn’t be out of place on the Billboard 100 with an instrumental backbone that’s somewhere between 80s synth-pop and 2010s chillwave. In the same vein, track “The Morning” maintains a Gen-X slow jam quality (and would be the perfect soundtrack for a reboot of any John Hughes film). Listen to them both below, and catch Benzvi’s EP release show on October 24th, supporting Aerial East.

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