This week, we’re spinning three incredibly lonely records. These new Releases from Told Slant, Guts Club, and JC Flowers all feel extremely personal and vulnerable.
For Brooklyn-based Double Double Whammy Records, “Going By” by Told Slant is heartbreakingly sad. A deep baritone a la The National, Felix Walworth places his emotions front and center in his vocal performance. Wavery vibrato and emotional cracks make “Going By” feel raw and intrusive, like reading a diary or peeking through your neighbor’s window. The tracks swing and sway, melancholy shanties. “I Don’t” bears the lines: “i used to look at you like a
fire place in the living room/i was the tired face lying next to you/how are you/now i have different words when i talk to you/and different faces to look at you/some are tidal waves some are/how are you/i miss you and/i don't want to think about it at all.” If you resonated with Alex G’s “Trick” or Adult Mom’s “Momentary Lapse of Happily,” “Going By” will strike you to the core. Emo guitar work, sad banjo, spoken word, and light percussion all make the release feel incredibly frail. Catch tracks from “Going By” on Radio 1190 this week.
Lindsey Baker and her affectionately named Shitbugs (Charles Lumar, Adam Campagna, Jonathan Harris, James Fenwicke) have crafted touching new release “Shit Bug” under the name Guts Club. Along the lines of Told Slant, Guts Club is incredibly personal. These tracks sound like they’re sung from an armchair in your high-school best friend’s bedroom. Baker’s Louisiana accent shines through the mix and her lyrics are tinged with depression. “Shit Bug” reminds me of Youth Lagoon, Elliot Smith, and Florist. Instruments are droopy and meandering, the Shitbugs are the saddest country band in the world. Reach for this record when you’re on a long, melancholy road trip, or right after you wish your friend a final goodbye.
“Driving Excitement and the Pleasure of Ownership” from London’s JC Flowers is a gorgeous experiment in headphone music. Just as you would listen to Guts Club or Told Slant alone, listen to this record loudly through your favorite earbuds. Four installments of a track called “Jazz Hole” serve as snippets of air within “Driving Excitement and the Pleasure of Ownership,” the other songs are finger-snapping floating ballads. Vocalist Ross Kristian reminds me of Sufjan Stevens, her powerful whisper lays on top of the tracks. The instrumentals are incredibly nostalgic; tape hiss, fuzzy guitars, and compressed drums. The release is surprisingly experimental, “Proletarieterette” and “Perfect Nurse” use reversed soundbytes as introductions. “Driving Excitement and the Pleasure of Ownership” is a beautiful addition to ATP Recordings’ catalogue and a record which will make JC Flowers a hotly-discussed topic of conversation. Check it out for yourself, listen to to “Driving Excitement and the Pleasure of Ownership” on AM1190 this week.