Posts Tagged ‘Peaking Lights’

Listen to (and love) the new Peaking Lights album, “Lucifer”

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

Continuing with the swirling, celestial dream-daze jams, we have “Lucifer,” the newest moony missive from ex-Wisconsin / currently Cali duo Peaking Lights, aka husband and wife Aaron Coyes and Indra Dunis. The couple’s second album, “936,” checked in as my 24th favorite album of 2011, although that’s probably too low, in retrospect. It was rising at the time that I had to stop fretting and hit the “Publish” button. Anyway, the point is that “936″ was a wonderfully listenable little breeze that seemed to come out of nowhere, so my expectations were high when bits of new Peaking Lights material began surfacing online.

And after streaming this thing about 30 times over the past couple of weeks, I’m beginning to think Coyes and Dunis exceeded not only those expectations, but perhaps the bar they set with “936″ as well. “Lucifer” is enthralling, a sun-streaked crystalization of the influences that make this band so interesting: dusty digital dub, lo-fi disco and burbling synth-pop, all cocooned in a hypnotic haze and set at a stubbornly stuttering motorik pace. It’s a recipe that acknowledges the current trend toward home-recording aesthetics, but also incorporates unexpected combinations of sounds and a stronger sense of pop craftsmanship that just about any buzzy band out there right now.

Neither “936″ nor “Lucifer” bowled me over immediately, of course. That is not what Peaking Lights does. Instead, this band and this music will, if you let it, infiltrate your ears, soak into your brain and creep into your bloodstream. Again, if you let it. That’s what this thingy below is for. Better yet, buy the album from Mexican Summer or from the band when they play the Sometimes A Great Notion festival in Portland on July 29.

Near/Far 2011: The “Bonus Disc”

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

In case you missed it: Near/Far is The Bulletin’s free, legal, two-disc compilation of some of the best songs of the year. The 2011 version — all 36 tracks of it, including Fleet Foxes, Yuck, Washed Out, Other Lives, The War on Drugs, Shabazz Palaces, Larry and His Flask, Laurel Brauns, Empty Space Orchestra, Erin Cole-Baker, Anastacia and more — can be downloaded by clicking here.

We’ve been doing Near/Far annually for the past five years, and you can still grab 2007 and 2008 here and 2009 here and 2010 here. That’s 174 awesome songs … for free. Get ‘em.

But that’s not enough! Each year, there are inevitably tracks I can’t use on the official Near/Far, either because I run out of space, or I can’t get permission to use them. So I’ve put together a “bonus disc” of great songs that didn’t make it onto the 2011 comp, and by “bonus disc” I mean YouTube playlist for super easy streaming.

Click here to listen. (Please note that some tracks — and one band name — may include coarse language.)

Here are the artists in this mix: The Decemberists, Frank Ocean, Wilco, Patrick Stump, The Vaccines, Big K.R.I.T., Robin Pecknold, F–ked Up, Givers, Kendrick Lamar, Pistol Annies, Clams Casino, Wavves, Purity Ring, Purling Hiss, Archers, Peaking Lights and Jovontaes. Again, you can hear all this right here.

Also, sorry if you run into an advertisement. I tried to avoid them. Ditched Foo Fighters, Beyonce, Lady Gaga and more because of ‘em. But they’re sneaky little dudes.