Playlist of the Week

November 7, 2014

Teddy Eisenberg, Staff Reporter

“Paradise Girls”—Deerhoof
For the last 20 years, Deerhoof have been one of the many artists pushing the indie-rock envelope, incorporating a dizzying array of avant-garde flourishes and various genres into their music. “Paradise Girls” is no exception, injecting a surprisingly funky groove into a fracture electro-pop song. Deerhoof’s new album, “La Isla Bonita,” is available on Polyvinyl Records starting Nov. 4.

“Dragonfly”— Magic Castles
The tones that Magic Castles conjures in their new album “Sky Sounds” are much like an oversaturated Polaroid photo; they take a seemingly long time to develop, and they have a colorful filter that evokes nostalgia for the past. In the case of this Minneapolis quintet, that past is most definitely the psychedelic ’60s, as the expansive deluge of reverb, crystalline guitar and spaced-out jam “Dragonfly” will attest. Released on Nov. 3, this signature blend of psych-rock sounds is sure to please any fan of the genre.

“Allons-y (1)”— Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd has returned in 2014 to reintroduce us to the classic rock sounds they pioneered in the ’70s. “Allons-y (1)” sounds suspiciously like the track “Run Like Hell” from the group’s 1979 album “The Wall,” but at this stage in their career, Pink Floyd does not have to reinvent the wheel to give fans what they want. This single is surely the sign of good things to come on the band’s forthcoming album, “The Endless River,” due out on Nov. 11.

“Make You Better”— The Decemberists
Indie rock has changed a lot in The Decemberists four-year absence, in some cases for the worse—here’s looking at you, Mumford & Sons—but the reaffirming thing about music is that it will always have room for genius. Due out sometime next year, The Decemberists’ new album, “What A Terrible World, What A Beautiful World,” promises to sport the literary flair and musical daring of past releases in the group’s catalog; the Avett Brothers-esque “Make You Better” is more than proof of that.

“Clearing”— Grouper
In many ways, “Ruins” is the perfect album title for the songs on Grouper’s latest offering, implying tracks that are spacious, haunting, delicate and worth revering. “Clearing” is an utterly hypnotizing song. The way that singer Liz Harris’ voice is nearly indistinguishable from the pitter-patter of piano keys is a sonic cue to the listener to pause and really listen to what is going on, not just in this one song, but also in the surrounding world. “Ruins” was released on Kranky Records on Nov. 4.

Retro Pick of the Week:
“Modern Kicks”— The Exploding Hearts
1977 was a golden year for the world of punk rock, a year that saw the emergence of both The Clash and the Sex Pistols. The Exploding Hearts were perhaps the best punk rock band to emerge since that original wave, transforming revivalism and hero worship into amazingly raw and melodic songs. Tragically, a van crash killed three of the group’s members in 2003, cutting their career much too short. Punk ensembles as talented as The Exploding Hearts don’t come along often, and “Modern Kicks” proves it.

Teddy Eisenberg is a third year programmer at WRUW-FM 91.1 Cleveland. He hosts The ’59 Sound, an exploration of rock music, every Thursday morning from 8-10 a.m. and co-hosts the variety talk show Max and Teddy in the Morning at Night (Sometimes) on Mondays from 5-6 p.m. The crackle of vinyl warms him on cold Cleveland nights.