Lake Ruth – The Only One Who Knows

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Formed in 2015 by the amalgamation of talents of multi-instrumentalist Hewson Chen (The New Lines), drummer Matt Schulz (Holy Fuck) and vocalist Allison Brice, NYC’s Lake Ruth put out their debut album, Actual Entity in June this year on UK label The Great Pop Supplement. Mixed by Graham Walsh (also of Holy Fuck), the 9-track record boasts an array of musical genres including baroque pop, psych rock, kraut, and 1960s experimentation. The LP title itself is a reference to the process philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead, specifically as it pertains to the fluid nature of reality — an ethos which also seems to have informed the trio’s musical process.

Listen to the airy single “The Only One Who Knows.”

Ra Ra Riot – Is It Too Much

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I had all but overlooked Ra Ra Riot‘s new album (panned by critics), when whilst on my way to work one morning I heard the following track on the radio and had that old swooning feeling associated with the group’s debut record, The Rhumb Line.

The NY-based group’s third album, Beta Love released January 2013 comes as a departure from their signature chamber/baroque pop sound, which incorporated more string instrumentation and less electronic elements (the cellist recently left the band). “Is It Too Much,” however, hearkens back to their original sound and is a reminder of the group’s sweet and poignant appeal.

Despite the transitional period the band is evidently experiencing, I regret not being able to see them at DC’s 930 Club the day after their album dropped. Hopefully there will be more opportunities in the future, however, as the group navigates their way (and their place) in this brave new electronic era.