Three staffers, three unabashed suggestions.
“Strangest Factor,” The Struggle On Medication
With few reservations, I might simply suggest all of A Deeper Understanding, the most recent assortment of dreamy, tender, Springsteen-worshiping rockers from Philly’s invaluable The Struggle On Medication. However one tune particularly has taken up everlasting residence in my mind, coronary heart, and every day Spotify playlist, and that’s album centerpiece “Strangest Factor.” Frontman Adam Granduciel’s lyrics are as evocative, romantic, and ambiguous as ever—all summer time rides, late nights, and itchy unknowable longing. (Like most of his greatest songs, this one is obscure sufficient to be about any variety of relationships—which is to say, malleable sufficient to accommodate your particular heartache, to really feel prefer it was written as commiseration for your blues.) However “Strangest Factor” speaks loudest when it lets the devices do the speaking. The tune is constructed round an achingly infectious, round riff that the band retains inflating with every go round, the unstated sentiment enhanced by heat synth, backup coos, and solos large and shiny sufficient to etch themselves on a stadium’s value of souls. It’s as if Granduciel runs out of phrases to precise what he’s feeling (no matter that is perhaps—once more, the man is slippery in his melancholia) and simply trusts the emotive blare of the music to say what he can’t. It’s a language I believe I do know, too. [A.A. Dowd]
Seaside Home, B-Sides And Rarities
Though Seaside Home launched B-Sides And Rarities in late June, solely lately have I begun returning to it as religiously as I’ve the duo’s previous data. Its spellbinding textures really feel particularly healing within the cooler days and earlier nightfalls, and the remastered rarities and different outliers collected on B-Sides all share a selected in-betweenness befitting the odd seasonal suspension we’ve skilled. I’ve been particularly taken with the lengthy night shadows of Melancholy Cherry/Thank Your Fortunate Stars outtake “Baseball Diamond” and the deep-space echoes of “Saturn Tune,” constructed on a piano loop written through the periods for 2012’s Bloom. “Wherever You Go,” Bloom’s hidden observe, lastly finds correct billing on B-Sides, and it’s nonetheless a swooning, lo-fi revelation, one which harkens again to the band’s earliest work. B-Sides as an entire is gratifying as one of many looser, extra candid moments in Seaside Home’s catalog, and it stands as a testomony to Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally’s unrelenting, if deliberate, experimentation in carving out their singular dream-pop path during the last decade. [Kelsey J. Waite]
We don’t speak about it a lot, however let’s be clear: Apple’s earbuds fucking suck. At all times have, and no quantity of cordless upgrading goes to make a distinction. The ridiculous smooth-white-plastic aesthetic demanded of the look ensures that, for greater than 50 p.c of the inhabitants, they gained’t keep in your ear. It’s infuriating. Making headphones that don’t fall out of your ear canal should you tilt your head three inches to the aspect or stroll greater than 10 steps shouldn’t be a stumper, however all these geniuses at Apple apparently took each class save for fundamentals of human anatomy. Because of this, these headphones have traditionally been forged apart the second I get them, to take a seat in a drawer and get begrudgingly pulled out as a brief stopgap every time my precise headphones cease working. However no extra! Now not am I a slave to having to purchase separate headphones due to Apple’s incompetence. I now have Earhoox: These little guys are just like the rubber offers you should purchase to tug over your earbuds, with the excellence of truly being each good high quality and one measurement matches all, due to the extra piece of rubber that tucks beneath the higher cartilage above your ear canal, stopping them from falling out (even throughout ridiculous train maneuvers, as I’ve realized by repeated and ridiculous testing). They arrive in packs of two, however I’ve had the primary pair connected for months now, they usually’re nonetheless going robust, which is already longer than most in-ear headphones have for me, given the heavy exercise mine often get. It’s an affordable and glorious manner of getting your transportable sound system with out having to waste money on a separate pair of earbuds that can keep in. [Alex McLevy]