"Shatter You Through" is the lead single from Carnation (June 8), the third record from Pennsylvania-based musician Daughn Gibson. His label, Sub Pop, describes Carnation's most pervasive theme as "the chaos of circumstance."
Jamie xx of The xx is releasing his second solo record on June 1. "Loud Places" features his xx bandmate, Romy Madley-Croft, but this tune certainly isn't as sparse as the music they release together. I fully expect to hear this song at H&M the next time I visit.
Brooklyn-based musician Torres (aka Mackenzie Scott) is releasing her third record in three years on May 5. The title track plays like a true performance piece.
Earlier this week I read about a collaboration between Franz Ferdinand and Sparks called FFS. I've been familiar with Franz Ferdinand for over a decade. In fact, their show with The Futureheads and Delays in 2004 at The Quest (RIP) was basically my first small-venue-national-touring-act concert experience. But I had to do my research on Sparks, because I couldn't figure out what the fuss was all about.
After a little research, what I found is that the Los Angeles-born Sparks are one of those bands who never hit it big in their home-country. Their biggest success came in Europe, specifically in the U.K., which explains why Franz Ferdinand lists brothers Ron and Russell Mael as two of their biggest influences. And Franz Ferdinand aren't alone, the list of artists who list Sparks as an influence includes Kurt Cobain, Morrissey, Arcade Fire, MGMT, Sonic Youth, Panda Bear, Ramones, Duran Duran, Björk, Depeche Mode, New Order, The Pixies, Ween, Will Sheff (Okkervil River), Paul McCartney and They Might Be Giants, to name a few.
While I don't connect with all of their music (I have a hard time with '80s pop), I can appreciate how they made a career being irreverent and ahead of the curve. "Wonder Girl" is their first single from 1972.