Crystal Castles – Frail

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Well this is an unexpected surprise. Despite the announcement that one half of Crystal Castles, Alice Glass was leaving the band last October, extant member Ethan Kath posted a new track on Soundcloud today called “Frail” — which in true CC fashion is anything but.

With a new vocalist in place on the track (whose vocal gymnastics don’t sound all that dissimilar from Glass’) named Edith, Kath proves that he hasn’t lost his flare for crafting dark and dissonant production ‘scapes. Perhaps the friction between the former duo served as a catalyst for new material? Celebrate the continuance of Crystal Castles in its new form with “Frail” below.

JENN’S EPIC ‘BEST OF’ LIST: 2012

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So long 2012 – Sydney NYE

Now that I’m back from abroad, I’m amped to finally be sharing my list of stand-out indie tracks from the last year!

In no particular order, below are my top 50 artists and/or tracks of 2012. Since I started blogging midway through the year, some of these artists have been honored with a post prior and some have not. Thus for the sake of diversifying, in some cases the featured track below is not necessarily my favorite but a varying version of the original or new track entirely (but equally adored, obv).

1. Alpine – Hands

 

2. Little Dragon – Ritual Union

 

3. Trails & Ways – Border Crosser (Seshen Remix)

 

4. Air Traffic Controller – You Know Me

 

5. Electric Guest – This Head I Hold (their cover of Little Dragon’s Ritual Union is a must-listen as well)

 

6. Calvin Harris ft. Florence Welch – Sweet Nothing

 

7. Beat Culture – Useless

 

8. Tennis – Origins

 

9. Tanlines – S.A.W.

 

10. Beach House – Myth

 

11. Blackbird Blackbird – Running Up That Hill (Kate Bush Cover)

 

12. Dems – Down on You (Hannes Fischer Remix)

 

13. Charli XCX – I’ll Never Know

 

14. Lord Huron – The Stranger

 

15. Ellie Goulding – Figure 8 (Alias Mix)

 

16. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs (TEED) – Tapes & Money

 

17. Flight Facilities – Clair de Lune (ft. Christine Hoberg)

 

18. Wild Belle – It’s Too Late

 

19. Dirty South & Alesso – City of Dreams

 

20. Alt-J – Something Good

 

21. Bumblebeez – Next to You

 

22. St. Lucia – Closer Than This

 

23. Crystal Castles – Wrath of God

 

24. Sky Ferreira – Everything is Embarrassing

 

25. Ben Howard – The Fear (Moonlight Matters Rework)

 

26. No Ceremony/// – Feelsolow

 

27. The 1975 – You

 

28. Ultraista – Smalltalk

 

29. The Zolas – Knot In My Heart

 

30. Southern Shores – New Love

 

31. Django Django – Default

 

32. AlunaGeorge – You Know You Like It (Bondax Remix)

 

33. Dan Croll – From Nowhere

 

34. Germany Germany – With You (ft. Kotomi)

 

35. Of Monsters and Men – Little Talks (The Knocks Remix)

 

36. Sun Airway – Close

 

37. Grimes – Genesis

 

38. Youth Lagoon – Daydream

 

39. Miike Snow – Bavarian #1 (Say You Will)

(Track begins at 3:05)

 

40. Wild Child – The Tale of You & Me

 

41. The Naked and Famous – Young Blood

 

42. Dwntwn – See My Eyes

 

43. Passion Pit – Take A Walk

 

44. Beat Connection – Think/Feel (ft. Chelsey Scheffe)

 

45. Grizzly Bear – Sleeping Ute

 

46. Years & Years – I Wish I Knew

 

47. MS MR – Hurricane

 

48. Kindness – House

 

49. Hot Chip – How Do You Do (Todd Terje remix)

 

50. Wild Cub – Thunder Clatter

 

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

These tracks also received a considerable amount of air time on my playlist this year.

1. The Xx – Sunset

 

2. Bloc Party – Truth

 

3. Cat Power – Ruin

 

4. Adventure Club – Retro City (Bronze Whale Remix)

 

5. Panama – It’s Not Over

 

6. Santigold – Disparate Youth

 

7. Phebe Starr – Alone With You

 

8. Viceroy – Chase Us Around – (Jay Lamar & Jesse Oliver Remix)

 

9. U-Tern – You Don’t Know Me

 

10. The Establishment – Love Like This

Crystal Castles – III

In keeping with this week’s theme of Halloween-related music, today’s post features the experimental group with ‘goth-pop sensibilities,’ Crystal Castles. The nihilistic worldview of the Canadian duo is evident in their dark tones and dystopic lyrics. Although discordant at times, their array of sounds come together in what is ultimately wickedly mesmerizing stuff.

Also continuing the meme of three-character monikers, the following tracks “Plague” and “Wrath of God” are off their forthcoming album, III, scheduled to drop November 12. Apparently CC used the first take of each recording on the album, averring that “the first take is the rawest expression of an idea.” That level of commitment to a musical philosophy is commendable.

For good measure, I also threw in a vintage favorite, “Celestica.” Listen to and download all three tracks below.

when it’s cold outside hold me / don’t hold me
when I choose to rest my eyes coax me / don’t coax me
follow me into nowhere / woven with the utmost care