September 17, 2013

Spinning Singles | Week of September 16

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Best Coast, I Don’t Know How

Even with its melodramatic lyrics, “I Don’t Know How,” the newest single from LA-based duo Best Coast, will still manage to have you swinging your head and sporting a goofy, toothy smile. The track, off their EP Fade Away (expected Oct. 22), maintains the style Best Coast has become known for, while still keeping its signature upbeat style interesting and developing this style further. The song begins as a slow waltz as lead singer, Bethany Cosentino, struggles to express her emotions, singing in her strong girl-band voice that she doesn’t “know how” to let those feelings out. Then, about halfway through the song, there is an abrupt, unexpected twist: Bethany Cosentino breaks into a pop-rock melody that makes you want to stand up and dance. Meanwhile, Bobb Bruno continues to amaze with his ability to play an absurd amount of instruments. Honestly, I was a fan of the duo from the moment I read the biography on their website: it simply reads, “Inspired by life and love and everything else.” The perfect song to blast on the way to class as the cold wind of fall sets in, “I Don’t Know How” is a must-add to your fall playlist.  — Gaby Velkes ‘16

Four Tet, Parallel Jalebi

Kieran Hebden’s electronic project Four Tet has been around for sixteen years, but from the sound of it, you’d think he was some new artist on the cutting edge. The early previews for his seventh album, Beautiful Rewind, shows an artist continuing to push the boundaries of experimental electronic music. First single “Kool FM” eschewed atmospherics for disjointed, banging snares and bass-heavy, garage-tinted synthesizers, but “Parallel Jalebi” does the opposite; incorporating some of the hazy repetition one might hear on a track from Berlin-based loop-master The Field, “Parallel Jalebi” spends its first two minutes building carefully. Wordless vocal loops double over each other as pillow-soft synthesizers rise from the background to the fore. The track then strips down to its initial loop before collapsing into what can only be called an anti-drop: the loop cuts out, microphone feedback rings through your headphones, followed by those delicate vocal lines and, finally, we’re reintroduced to that main motif and drumbeat, this time accompanied by a chirping, modem-like sound. Patient and meditative, “Parallel Jalebi” shows Four Tet reveling in simple repetition, meticulous sound design and negative space. It’s what we’ve come to expect from Hebden: music that focuses on moving forward and subverting expectations. — James Rainis ‘14

Miley Cyrus, Wrecking Ball

Miley Cyrus’s latest single “Wrecking Ball” evokes a spectrum of emotion. Though the video might shock and appall, with a naked Cyrus swinging on a wrecking ball, the melody and lyrics do quite the opposite. In fact, someone listening to the new chart-topping song might think it is a different artist singing entirely. She brings in a level of emotion that is not often seen from the former teen sensation, and one could even say she has created a song that resonates with anyone who has fallen for someone who was not good to them. Though it may not bring tears to your eyes, like Cyrus’s in the video, it catchy and it will not take long until you are singing along too. It is yet another step in Cyrus’s transformation, even though she seems to be moving away from the reputation she has built with her new hairstyle, songs like “We Can’t Stop” and performance at the VMA’s. But, to use her own words, “she’s just being Miley.” So if you haven’t listened yet, I would highly recommend “Wrecking Ball.” Though I might have to recommend listening without watching the music video, unless you are into that kind of thing.