Kendall Bruns – Valley of Death
Genre: Indie Folk, Folk, Americana
Most artists never really stood a chance. The vast majority of them would’ve run away from creating art if they could. As it happened, most of them had no choice. Or, worse, they returned and retreated back into their art even after making a clean break.
It’s cheaper than going to therapy. It’s less secretive. Plus, when it’s all over, the artists have something that they can share with the world. Sure, not everyone’s ready to listen to someone telling stories about their own problems. This is why a good beat, a nice riff, and a well-sliced vocal delivery are tools that artists need to use.
Make no mistake, though, it’s always about the artists. On the rare instance when it’s the audience being given what they ask for, the art suffers greatly. Kendall Bruns’ Valley of Death is a cinematic piece about forcing yourself away from self-criticism. It’s the kind of thing that artists think about even when faced with the glory of nature. It’s not easy being them. They have little choice in the matter. But watching them fight themselves is what gives the world really great songs.
ICHIWAWA – Weekend w/ Meg
Similar artists: Alex G, Deertick, Neutral Milk Hotel
Genre: Folk rock, Lo-fi Rock, Indie Rock
Parole officers don’t check felons have taken up songwriting. Judges don’t recommend that they should. That would be a novel approach to dishing out justice. I’m sure that there will be many complaints.
But hear me out. Wouldn’t we be able to lessen the number of violent crimes dramatically? Wouldn’t hardened criminals used to their tempestuous temper learn a thing or two about controlling it?
Sure, sure, they make them paint flowers in jail. And they get days off to read a book. But this is different. Songwriters get to engage with primal emotions. Potentially, they get awarded the luxury of replacing strangling someone with loud guitar playing instead.
ICHIWAWA’s Weekend w/ Meg sounds like music made by someone working through their anger. The substitution works wonders. On the one hand, the song flows with manic fervor. On the other hand, the manic fervor doesn’t spill out into the streets. I’m not ICHIWAWA should be under the surveillance of the authorities. What I’, saying is that songs are getting written.