Sliding towards oblivion October albums crumble around us. From gloss-pop sleep-walkers SAINT SISTER’s exalted softness, “The Shape of Silence,” to karmic commandos PILL’s fanged boomerangs, “Soft Hell,” entropy never rests. Timely ends include wry rural pianist-producer RACHEL TAYLOR BROWN’s inquisitive litanies, “Run Tiny Human,” wild-honeyed folkie ANNA ST. LOUIS’ grassroots revivals, “If Only There Was A River,” and silk-skating angel GABI’s ethereal séances, “Empty Me.” It’s all downhill from here.
Laura Gibson - Goners
Album title: Goners
Record Label: Barsuk Records
Steady melodies melt chamber-folk poetry lavished in lacquered violins and crisp whispers; Gibson’s stern, maternal meditations plucks picturesque descriptions from choice discourse emptying surreal stories into weary waltzes. Propped in sleepy secrets and perched in late-night lullabies, curious verses teeter between rhythmic riddles and gentle rhymes as, “Goners,” fawns over exquisite details, lovingly arranged with spacious tastes and embroidered poise.
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Kristin Hersh - Possible Dust Clouds
Album title: Possible Dust Clouds
Record Label: Fire Records
By enlisting singed incantations with misfit rhythms and sixth-sense experiments, the raw, innovative “Clouds,” rains taunt, indie-rock over meta-fiction revelations and character-driven mysticism; restoring and exploring mind-melting narratives backed by crafted catastrophe and cast-iron imaginations. A wonderfully unconventional guitarist and lyricist, Hersh thrusts, bucks and tugs, building exorcised lies into industrial shuffles and constructing untamed therapeutic grooves from ghostly psychosis.
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William Basinski + Lawrence English - Selva Oscura
Album title: Selva Oscura
Record Label: Temporary Residence
Wind-blown, deep-shadow frequencies emitting enormous sheaths of glacial sound, Basinski and English’s long-distance collaboration carve phantom channels carpeted in submerged white-noise hives; wafer-thin vespers buzzing among turgid reverberations. Immersive ice-cold surges blur hallowed monochromatic saturation while, “Selva,” bathed in sameness, dissolves, resolves and devours, subsiding and inviting marathon stretches to envelop mammoth canvases, smearing anonymous sonics with rapturous galactic blackness.
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Ian Sweet - Crush Crusher
Album title: Crush Crusher
Record Label: Hardly Art
Uncoiled turmoil crawls and hauls “Crusher,” from slithering alt-rock synergy into wilted narcotic-pop surrenders, forming choreographed torture through caressing delicate regrets into crashing concessions. A swift and fluid navigator, Sweet treats spent intents to beautiful squalor, biographical after-thoughts whose wavering shapes incite stalker beats from foggy colleagues, crafting soul-baring jump-abouts enacted as badge-of-honor battles in midnight raids on stolen emotions.
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Adrianne Lenker - abysskiss
Album title: abysskiss
Record Label: Saddle Creek
Singular singing ringing in sweet meekness greets wide-eyed wandering minstrel wonder as cross-stitched acoustic guitars climb, chime and confide inside Adrianne Lenker’s second solo venture. Scampering among writhing spirals and curious flurries, the intimate, “abysskiss,” flits in rich, rippling images, a fanciful whimsy overtaking logic to liberate reclusive truths with bewitching innocence; miniature singer-songwriter cinemas flickering around winsome rocking-chair two-steps.
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David Nance Group - Peaced and Slightly Pulverized
Album title: Peaced and Slightly Pulverized
Record Label: Trouble in Mind
Fiery quagmires blazed in steel-gauged lacework, “Peaced,” seethes, bleeds and seizes in splintered full-moon rock unlocking stark urban cool and ghoulish cosmic blues. Ignited in slow-roasted guitar-amp anarchy, unvarnished beauty bubbles and bends in David Nance Group’s competent hands conjuring prowling maelstroms strewn in blistering double-fisted resistance; coarse boisterous voices shaped by hip, slippery riffs lashed to adamant six-string savagery.
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Jumping from inevitable decay to immutable proofs, electric psychedelic groove-seekers CAVE’s funk-tinged shakedowns, “Allways,” and bouncing rockanauts THE DODOS’ runaway harmonized ruckus, “Certainty Waves,” are in it for the long run. Meanwhile, permanence buddies up with rock apostles YOUNG JESUS’s soaring hornet’s nest, “The Whole Thing Is Just There,” and Outback poet-philosopher PAUL KELLY’s organic folk-blues concordance, “Nature,” while punk-glam flame-thrower RON GALLO’s dazzling rabid revue, “Stardust Birthday Party,” poly-sampling ambassador ANCHORSONG’s international party-jam, “Cohesion,” and even cheeky sparkle-rock gadflies BRONCHO’s sleek, mega-infectious, “Bad Behavior,” suggests some things never change.