OFF THE RECORD: edition 12

In the last couple of weeks I’ve been so drawn to the comfort of familiar sounds. It might be the change of weather that has altered my musical pallet of late, I don’t know. What I do know is that these albums have been on constant rotation and are warming up these cold winter nights.

 

Posse | Soft Opening, 2014

This is a new and most welcome addition my record family. I had never heard of Posse until stumbling upon a list online of overlooked albums of 2014. There was a link to one of their tracks in the list and within hearing the first minute I was searching online where to find it.

A three-piece straight out of Seattle, Posse formed in 2010 when Paul Wittman-Todd and Sacha Maxim met. Shortly after they added Maxim’s previous band mate on drums, Jon Salzman and have since released 2 full-length albums, Soft Opening the sophomore.

Posse has this almost eerie lo-fi sound that is so brilliantly minimal it fills you up. Taking turns on lead vocals Wittman-Todd and Maxim never seem to harmonise however they have this lack of projecting that works wonders with the dazed twang of the guitar.

The opening track Interesting Thing No. 2 introduces the general gist of the album, a mundane, wasted youth, as Maxim sings ‘I can see from the desperate look in your eyes. You turn 25 so many things you haven’t tried.’ The album flows on through the ups and downs of growing up and wandering aimlessly through life and all its disappointments.

The drunken tale of Shut Up and the album’s closer Zone are my two favourite tracks from Soft Opening, which has quickly and unexpectedly made it into my top five albums of 2014 so far.

 

The Doors | The Doors, 1971

I have such fond memories of cranking The Doors at parties in my teenage years. There were several parties with an endless number of brooms in the closest and each of us would occupy one. We’d all be screaming the words into our brooms and just grooving along. Those were some of the best times.

The Doors is the debut album by the Californian 4-piece released in 1967 on Elektra Records. Their sound was pretty darn different from the rest of what was going on in California in the late 1960s with the hippie movement in full swing. With their long organ and guitar solos and Morrison’s eerie spoken word breaks they were probably more suited to what was going on in New York at the time.

This album has so many songs The Doors are well known for including their first commercial hit, Light My Fire. In fact, if you were to create a Best Of The Doors I think 100% of this album would make it on. This is a must in any collection.

 

Mojave 3 | Out of Tune, 1998

This has been my go-to album since about March this year. I just can’t stop playing it. I couldn’t find it in any stores but was able to get a re-issue online, thankfully. After the famed shoegaze band Slowdive were dropped from Creation Records three members, Neil Halstead, Rachel Goswell and Ian McCutcheon formed a new band, Mojave 3.

Different from the fuzzy sounds of Slowdive we all know and love, Mojave 3 has this really cool country kind of twang, but they don’t play country music. The vocals are sweet and clear and when the opening track, Who Do You Love, starts to play I just feel so warm. It has this trumpet solo in the middle that is really soft and loving.

One of the things I love most about Mojave 3 and Out Of Tune in particular is their ability to show constraint. The builds in this album could not be more perfect and when a song falls away it does so gracefully.

 

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