Thursday, July 03, 2008

Weekly New Releases: 7/1/08 (Earlimart)

The only noteworthy release this week is the new Earlimart disc.

Earlimart: Hymn & Her (Majordomo / Shout Factory)

It’s a weird release date for an indie record, but you get the feeling that Aaron Espinoza’s embracing the idea of working for himself. After years of putting out records for other people, last year he partnered with Shout Factory to release Mentor Tormentor on his own imprint (Majordomo). Now less than a year later, Hymn & Her is the follow-up. The new freedom and control suits him well. A decade as an indie band is a long time, but Hymn and Her shows that Earlimart’s still growing and putting out relevant music.

From the chug at the beginning of the first song, “Song For,” you know it’s an Earlimart record. It’s upbeat and a strong opener for the record. Earlimart’s always employed a rotating cast of members (members of Silversun Pickups, Great Northern and Everest have passed through) but as the album title and cover art suggests, Espinoza and Ariana Murray are the core (although Andrew Lynch, Michael Orendy and Brian Thornell have been playing with, and probably helped inspire the band in the past year).

While Espinoza still handles the majority of the lead vocals and songwriting, Murray steps out and provides a really nice contrast on “Before It Gets Better,” “Time For Yourself” and “Tell Me.” The production is particularly lush without being invasive. Vocals are often double-tracked to give them a fullness and most of the tracks have subtle nuances (whether it’s a sound effect, keyboard part, or odd instrument) that reveal themselves on repeated listenings. It’s another strong release from one of our best local bands.

Download "Song For"
Buy tickets to see Earlimart at Spaceland on 7/18/08

1 comment:

stanhalen said...

i didn't even know there was a new Earlimart album coming. but what you wrote about it sounds good, so i'll have to check this out soon...