Album Reviews Of The Week 4/8 – 4/16

Album reviews portland next northwest

Here are our Album Reviews of the Week:


AlbumSun City Eater In The River Of Light by Woods

Words: Lucas Cruzen

Brooklyn folk-rock outfit Woods have returned with their ninth studio album, Sun City Eater In The River Of Light. The album sparks and pops with infectious hooks. Jeremy Earl’s high-pitched hymns are as captivating as they are entrancing. Each song transitions into the next like a new passage of scripture in the bible of Woods. For its cultish vibe and supernatural essences, it wouldn’t be surprising at all if this band became the next musical deity for their own unique and devoted brand of followers. I can’t think of a band more deserving of that than Woods. Songs like “Can’t See At All,” and “The Other Side” will burrow themselves deep in your psyche, with their folky guitars and soulful horns rewriting the software in your brain.

If you’ve never listened to Woods before, Sun City Eater In The River Of Light is a fine introduction to a group of musicians you just might lose your religion to.

Favorite Songs: I Can’t See At All, Sun City Creeps, The Other Side.

AlbumBrilliant Sanity by Teleman

Words: Lucas Cruzen

UK band Teleman have returned with their sophomore effort, Brilliant Sanity, and it’s all straightforward, warm and fuzzy pop. While this release may not make any profound statements, or really require any sort of deep concentration, the listener will be instantly rewarded with refreshingly simple songs and melodies. Lead single “Dusseldorf” is a perfect example of the album’s ability to cast a spell on you. It’s the kind of ballad that you’ll hear in your dreams.

Brilliant Sanity is one of those albums that works like junk food, when you’re jonesing for a fix of that sweet sweet pop music, reach for Brilliant Sanity and you’ll receive instant gratification. This is not to dismiss Teleman at all, this album is a pop gem and deserves all the love you can give it.

Favorite Songs: Dusseldorf, Glory Hallelujah, Melrose.

AlbumSinging Saw by Kevin Morby

Words: Lucas Cruzen 

Kevin Morby, the former bassist of Woods and frontman of side project Babies, returns with his third solo effort, Singing Saw. This is an intricately layered album, with a gorgeous depth. There are so many things to enjoy, from the funky bass lines, to the sweet background harmonies, to just the sheer audacity that accompanies Mr. Morby’s perspectives. Title track “Singing Saw” sounds like it could’ve been recorded in an abandoned graveyard at dawn, while single “I Have Been To The Mountain” is a driving, ghastly anthem.

As an individual artist, this is certainly his most powerful release, and it may well be a bold introduction as one of the more important songwriters of his generation. Look out for Morby playing Pickathon this August, it’s sure to be something special.

Favorite Songs: I Have Been To The Mountain, Dorothy, Singing Saw.


bombino azel portland next northwestAzel by Bombino

Words: Ari Goodblatt

Azel is a great follow-up to his debut album, Nomad, and he has shown every ability to create amazing desert blues consistently and with a fresh perspective each time. Much of the album is sung in Tamasheq, his native tongue, which gives it a mysterious and sublime feeling that only Bombino can provide. He is able to keep the homeland feel, both in music and lyrical content, to expose his growing fan base to a sound that has been crafted in the crucible of continuous political and social upheaval from a part of the world we in the West frequently associate with unrest. The album expertly runs together, with each song playing off the next. You’ll have listened to the entire offering all the way through before you realize it’s over.

Favorite Songs: Akhar Zaman (This Moment), Igmayagh Dum (My Lover), Naqqim Dagh Timshar (We Are Left in This Abandoned Place).

EL VY: Brent Knopf Interview

Words: Michael Faul For a city known internationally for its music and arts scene, that is ...

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