Friday Reviews

Field Music: Commontime

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I’ve never met a Field Music album I didn’t like. The English rock duo has released their 6th full length studio album today entitled Commontime, and this may be my favorite of theirs. Listening to this album is like going out to a restaurant with wide range of options on the menu. Upon sampling the dishes, you’re thoroughly delighted because not only do they vary in flavor but they’re absolutely delicious! Both the music and writing for Field Music brothers Peter and Davis Brewis has matured since their emergence as a band back in the early 2000’s. Commontime veers into 60’s psychedelic and makes a hard left turn into R&B/funk territory. No change ever feels abrupt or rushed though. Field Music is known for their finely tuned overlapping harmonies and that’s highlighted on such tracks as, “Disappointed”. The baseline in this song has a distinct flow reminiscent of Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust”. The bass also gets in some good work for one of the best songs on the album, “Don’t You Wanna Know What’s Wrong”. This song is funky and so tight musically, especially the keyboard that chimes in and out as the song fades. Prince praised the albums opening track, “The Noisy Days Are Over” and it seems they’ve paid homage to him by incorporating some Prince-like elements including conga drums, a female background vocalist, and a funky guitar riff into “It’s a Good Thing”. If you’re looking for something different that plays with a variety of genres, give this album a listen. It’s available to stream on Spotify and Soundcloud below and for purchase on iTunes.

Download Now: Disappointed/Don’t You Wanna Know What’s Wrong/It’s A Good Thing/The Morning is Waiting


Dr Dog: Psychedelic Swamp

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I have always liked weird music. Strange music with a purpose though, not just random distorted sounds. Dr Dog is weird and so is Psychedelic Swamp, their ninth album released today. The album opens with “Golden Hind” a soft track backed with gentle plucks of a guitar and bass as well as backing vocal whispers. On paper Dr Dog can read like a mix of Beatles, The Zombies or some other 60’s before its time alternative indie rock band. Psychedelic Swamp doesn’t move into a ton of new directions and that’s not really a bad thing. Particularly on a song like, “Bring My Baby Back”. Toby Leaman, one of Dr Dog’s lead singers, has real grit to his voice coupled with sincere earnestness. He can croon without sounding deperate. The song is a bit similar to “Army of Ancients” from their 2008 album Fate. Scott McMicken takes the lead on “Fire on My Back” and his almost- falsetto is on point all throughout this song. One of my favorite from Psychedelic Swamp, is “Swamp Descent”, because of the way the beautiful harmonies move about and float over the albums murky proverbial swamp. What Dr Dog does well  on Psychedelic Swamp is give you more of what you already love about them and add a few new favorites to an already comprehensive list of classics. You can stream it on Spotify and purchase on iTunes.

Download Now: In Love/Bring My Baby Back/Golden hind/Swamp Descent

 

 

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