I’m slow enough to put up reviews of music, as all reviewers carry so much baggage. It depends on what their taste is, what age they are, whether this is the first album they’ve heard by a band and a thousand other factors down to what they had for lunch, and whether their favourite football team won that day (not likely for the Liverpool fans in the audience!). However, they’re a good way to see what you might be missing, so I’m going to go through some of the on line magazines and see what they’re recommending. I’ll start with the obvious one, pitchfork!
Pitchfork give top marks to: LCD Soundsystem, Deerhunter and Joanna Newsome all with 92%. I’m surprised at Deerhunter getting that high a mark, but haven’t heard the new one, so who knows.
Slightly behind them are Beach House and Animal Collective on 90%, and then comes the rest of the group on about 80-90%, with Arcade Fire, Real Estate, Vampire Weekend, Owen Pallet, Four tet, Gil Scott Heron, Titus Andronichus, Local Natives, Sleigh Bells, Flying Lotus, Janelle Monae and the Walkmen. The main thing that’s obvious from that list, is that you could have made it without hearing the albums. Maybe they don’t really listen to them at all, and just give the marks to their mates (ok, I’ll stop, honest).
One band I haven’t mentioned here much are Ariel Pink, who get a 90%, and might be worth a listen. They’re on 4AD, and pitchfork have one of their songs for free here. Slightly 80’s twinged, but a nice big sound and interesting enough.
Best Coast describe themselves as Gospel, Surf and Pop on their myspace page. I don’t really see the Gospel, but the surf is pretty evident. They manage an 8.4 according to the fork.
Julian Lynch is possibly my pick of the round. I think I’ll be checking his album out. He gets a 8.5 on the fork-o-meter, and does sound like someone worth investigating further.