Un Rodo Cora – Length of the Ride
You don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone, they tell us in song, verse and, occasionally, on strangely worded birthday cards. While this is subject material best captured in aching pop ballads, Length of the Ride bravely stares the topic head-on. Stockholm based group Un Rodo Cora takes the plunge in describing the predicament around fretting about the present and worrying about the future when what you already might have it be pretty great, to begin with.
Indie-rock folks don’t much like being lectured, but they will listen to a good pop hook. Length of the Ride features several. Un Rodo Cora creates a pleasant, earnest sound, the kind that a poet or folkie might dream up in order to try and play the local clubs.
The tune is a pop-rock guitar centred around the use of the guitar. Could it have been a folk number with only an acoustic guitar and the vocals to lead it? Surely, yes, but the arrangement that the group has dreamed up here is much more satisfying.
The Amber Unit – By the Fires
There’s some interesting music a-brewing in gentle old Switzerland, and it sounds positively non-Swiss. Some of the more interesting musical artists of the country are drawing inspiration from what the Americans and Brits would politely all label as “world music”.
The Amber Unit, a visionary indie-pop group from the country of cheese, chocolate and Yello, bring in their beautiful obsession with North African music on their song By the Fires. A good deal of the instrumental reminds me of the great Tuareg guitarist, Bombino and other musicians hailing from around the Sahara Desert.
However, the group finds a way to mix in Western pop melodies over the backing in a way that feels seamless and ready for the airwaves. The buildup includes a gently picked acoustic guitar and a rumbling bass. By the Fires is an achievement in a musical production by true blue music obsessives.