Stream full albums for free…
…join in a discussion on twitter with similarly enthusiastic music fans and psych explorers
…tweet reactions with the hashtag #RECORDclub
Click here to listen to Cate Le Bon’s CYRK
…the 1st must-hear LP of 2012!
Then tweet about it at the #RECORDclub.
The Record Club is the latest venture in The Future Heart’s ongoing explorations of the worlds where music and social media collide. Commentary on new albums will be tweeted @FutureHeartDay. Wait right there – I know what you’re probably thinking, “this sounds like Spin’s recent project to ‘reinvent the album review’ with @spinreviews… or the album-reviews-in-140-characters that preceded Spin, by @1000TimesYes‘ and others.”
Well, kind of….
…but not really…
Whereas Spin seeks to “be an exhaustively definitive listener’s guide… for virtually every album… that matters in 2012… within the confines of a 140-character tweet…” The Record Club is the exact opposite. By design it’s selective, not exhaustive (what’s the point considering today’s music climate: curious listeners are already overwhelmed with what to check out next). Rather than be “definitive” (as if that’s possible, especially when limited to 140), The Record Club will rip the notion from Bob Dylan’s backpages that to define “good and bad…quite clear, no doubt, somehow” is a “pathway led by confusion boats.” In this spirit, special notice will be given to over-looked and under-rated albums – that is, the gems the self-appointed gate-keepers don’t deem to “matter.” The Record Club will spotlight the blog-buzzed works deserving the hype too, though this isn’t about reinforcing the flavor of the week copied from someplace else on the web. It’s about discovery and wonder, and you and me…
The Record Club forgoes being a definitive guide to be a selective discussion that is somehow infinite: an open-ended, interactive way to discover interesting new music streaming for free online and share your thoughts. Afterall, my opinions are no more “definitive” than yours…
There’s no ratings involved in The Record Club, but it’s implied by their selection that all albums chosen are my take on the best new music (to borrow a phrase from another music criticism behemoth). Maybe I’m wrong. That’s where you come in loyal Psych Explorations readers and twitter/FutureHeartDay followers…
All Record Club tweets will come with a link to listen to the full album, for free. Take a listen and then join in a discussion on twitter with similarly enthusiastic music explorers by tweeting your reactions of the whole album or specific songs with the hashtag #RECORDclub. The intention is to create discussions like those in local “book clubs” – but for music not books, and using social media instead of coffee klatsches. Check this blog and FutureHeartDay to read what other are tweeting.
Now, let’s get this party started.
Of the forty or so 2012 albums I’ve listened to so far, two distinguish themselves…by far:
- Cate Le Bon’s CYRK – released last week
- Bang Bang Boogaloo’s Beyond Beyond is Beyond contemporary psych comp – officially out today as a free download
CYRK is the new year’s first must-hear album.
That’s not just my opinion. Cate’s sophomore trump is one of just three new albums to have a consensus rating of “universal acclaim” (according to metacritic.com – they tally its score at 81%, the same as First Aid Kit’s The Lion’s Roar and Bill Ryder-Jones If…). Several reviews even discuss its standing as an early frontrunner for album of the year:
- KCRW: “The earliest contender for album of the year 2012 is the next level second release from one of the most original new voices to emerge in years.”
- Pop Matters: “Although Cyrk‘s general air (and its January release) could lead to Cyrk being overlooked for such showier stuff as 2012 progresses, at least we can thank Le Bon for imparting such hope and intrigue for a new music year.”
- Consequence of Sound: “Her haunting, Welsh-infused vocals stand as the driving force behind an album… poised to bring Le Bon a breakout year.”
Listen for yourself. It’s streaming at Paste and KCRW (if/when those expire try here or here).
For most of the albums I pick for the Record Club I’ll tweet one comment – just enough to start a discussion – but CYRK gets one tweet per song (partly because it’s the inaugural Record Club, but mostly because there’s no way I could limit my awe for this album to 140 characters).
UPDATE See those tweets and more at CYRK’s #RECORDclub page.