The Fabulous Four New Summer Albums

The Fabulous Four New Summer Albums

  • Article by: Wells Adams
  • Posted: 07/11/2011

Great music becomes absolutely imperative in the summer months. You have road trips to plan, porch parties to enjoy and days of work to fill with music you love. Once again, we’re looking to Lightning 100 DJ Wells Adams to give you the heads up on what’s worth your precious summer listening hours.

 

Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes: Civilized Man
Greatest Hits 2010-2011
Stars: 4.5

Apparently nobody told Daniel Ellsworth that when you drop your first full-length, it’s not supposed to be a greatest hits record. You’re supposed to build up to that. I say this for two reasons—just hear me out. One, every song sounds like it could be a hit. Two, every song sounds different, like each was plucked from a series of dusty vinyl, cracked cassettes and ripped MP3s. It’s all over the place in a phenomenal way. I hate comparing musicians, but this sounds like a cross between Jack White and M. Ward, and those guys are about three sips of absinthe away from total wizardry. Seriously, this will be my highest rated review. Go. Buy. The. Record.

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Foster the People: Torches
This band is under new MGMT.
Stars: 3.5

Did anyone see these guys coming? Don’t lie, ‘cause you didn’t unless you were at SXSW this year. Five months separated the release of their EP and this full-length record. Perhaps this goes without saying, but it should be reiterated that Foster the People became famous in less time than it takes most aspiring musicians to get fired from Starbucks. They have the feel of MGMT, which is a good thing, but we can only hope their sophomore effort doesn’t go the way of MGMT’s Congratulations. The obvious hit on this album is “Pumped Up Kicks,” but I would look into “Houdini” as well.

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Dawes: Nothing Is Wrong
... with this band.
Stars: 4

This second LP from the Goldsmith brothers seems to start where North Hills left off. To be honest, they leaked a good bit of this record on their most recent Daytrotter Session (daytrotter.com), but I’m all for websites that give away a few tunes—ahem, briterevolution.com. In order of ballerness, here’s what I like about these guys and this record. 1. They seem to only record to analog, giving them a fantastically rustic sound. 2. Their lyrics are simply eloquent, eloquently simple. 3. If they’re good enough for Wilco, Robbie Robertson, Chris Robinson and Conor Oberst, they’re good enough for your iPod. Check out “My Way Back Home” and “How Far We’ve Come.”

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Kopecky Family Band: Of Epic Proportions EP
Read the title. Enough said.
Stars: 3.5

The Lightning 100 staff covers Bonnaroo every single year. During our four days on the farm in Manchester, we inevitably see the next big thing, whether we know it or not. The trick is calling it before you’re late to the party. Maybe I’m fashionably late to this soiree, but I made it, and I have my hippest deep V on. This EP does what extended plays should do—it makes you want to hear more. The guy/girl dynamic shines the brightest on the bookends of this record. Get yourself some “Howlin’ at the Moon” and “Little Baby Sister.”

 

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