It's song of the week time. Seriously, I love these songs, I love them so much that I don't even feel the need to write something totally stupid before we get to them, so let's cut the fat.
Heather Duby has been making waves up in the PNW for years. Check out this review from Seattle Sound Magazine:
Heather Duby's previous solo releases have elicited much comment about "pop sensibility". But pop sensibility is for the like of American Idols, and Duby may congratulate herself for remaining un-pop-sensible on her self-titledthirdfull-length, which plays like the culmination of the efforts of her first and second records. Production genius Steve Fisk steps in once again to help Duby firmly grasp the organic sounds of Come Across the River, while adding a dusting of electronic notions suggested on Post to Wire. Most of these songs revolve around the helplessness of love, as if, at times, Duby can't help but fall in love ("Still Rough", "Wrestle and Cuss"). Basic piano chords and melodic violin lines bring both beauty and sorrow to "Gone Aground" and Erin Tate (Minus the Bear) drums up the building blocks for the optimistic sound that guides the best songs on the album ("Listen" , "Would Have Liked You (I'm Pretty Sure)"). The Finale, "Places Shape Lives", steps into the realm of recent Stereolab and early U2. If that isn't enough, the record includes a little bonus song in which Duby prepares for the battlefield of love. At last, Heather Duby has found her sound.I think she sounds a lot like Psapp myself.--Ben Guerechit/Seattle Sound Magazine
Download: Heather Duby--"Would Have Liked You (I'm Pretty Sure)"
Next up is Midlake. There's an ABSURD amount of positive press to choose from concerning their stellar new release The Trials of Van Occupanther so i think i'll just go with my fave blog Stereogum's live review:
Holy shit did Midlake bring a lot of equipment with them from Texas. We're talking a Hot Chip-sized spread of keyboards, cords, pedals, and more. Not to mention a screen and movie projector! We were hoping it was to play the M*A*S*H opening montage during Stereogum fave "Roscoe." No luck.Download: Midlake--"Roscoe" (for the three of you out there who ain't heard it!)
So Merc was sold out, and the line was long on gate crashers hoping to get a glimpse of their Bamnam bretheren. After spinning that album and their upcoming release The Trials of Van Occupanther, the sonic shift from Flaming Lipsy Yorke-ishness to Fleetwood Mac-fed harmonies is evident and impressive. With the sound of each record best typified in "Balloon Maker" and "Roscoe" respectively, we were shocked to get 'em as the first two cuts on the night. God i love Midlake.