The third album by Eggshells, a Seattle trio, might best be described as trippy—as in psych rock soundscapes, as in trip-hop drums, as in songs about a certain sort of romantic stumbling. All this adorns a lightly brooding, shape-shifting indie framework. On “Ohioesque” that sound manifests as open synths and gently plucked guitars with dual vocal harmonies. On “Descent” it turns toward a heartbeating bass groove and guitars that ricochet around your headphones.
I was a decent fan of "postmodern beach music band" Warren Dunes' 2019 EP, "Welcome to Warren Dunes." I'm a much bigger fan of the trio's new LP (out March 19—but four singles are already streaming). The hooks are sharper, even as the sound has grown more expansive, whirling together indie surf rock with radiantly spacey pop and more ominous currents. The whole thing has the beauty, weirdness, and darkness of a Northwest seaside sunset—blushing with colors, on the verge of a storm.
The Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio's second LP is a heady, hip-shaking testament to groove. On each of the nine tracks the band lays down a soul-funk-jazz foundation of warbling organ, strutting guitar, and taut drums. Then one of the three will take off in a solo that sustains that groove—you will never stop wanting to move—and transcends it. The album's only fault is it'll make you pine to see the band live.
On this EP, local rapper Rick Reams (aka Rik Rude of Fresh Espresso) and producer Def Dee are having some fun. Reams’s verses at their best are splendidly loose associative riffs, zooming between topics with humor and finesse (what’s the last rap you heard that shouted out “Costco card members”?). Dee supports the playfulness with varied, bouncy beats. The EP doesn’t quite sustain the verve of its first two tracks across all six, which tilt toward choruses about cars and partying, but its spirit abides.
The four songs that make up Very Old Songs are indeed very old—traditional folk tracks brimming with death. The first, “Sweet William and Lady Margaret,” dates back at least to 1611 and clocks in, here, at over 17 minutes. Lori Goldston—a local cellist who’s worked with everyone from Nirvana to David Byrne to Lynn Shelton—lends her rich, aching playing as the most prominent instrumentation while local singer Jordan O’Jordan’s pure voice sails above. The traditional songs might at first pique the ears of anyone who went on a sea shanty bender in January. But the novelty will quickly fade. This is a slow, spare, stunning album, that if listened to by yourself—particularly on a winter night, during a pandemic—may leave you feeling deeply, historically, less alone.