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Wylder’s Golden Age Thinking

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Artist: Wylder

Album: Golden Age Thinking

Reason We’re Cranking It: There’s a lot of noise coming out of DC these days, but if you can look beyond the politics, “Golden Age Thinking” is a sound that’s literally music to our ears. Reminiscent of 90s era indie mainstays Guster and Wilco, Wylder blends sentimentality with substance in a way that both rewinds and fast forwards the genre at the same time.

What The Album Tells Us About Them: Folk and pop influences bubble to the surface in the quartet’s writing and they have the ability to build towards a moment, not only with individual tracks but with the album as a whole. If “Golden Age Thinking” were a balloon, it would become fully inflated by the midway point – “Winter” – and pop with punctuation by completion – “Right to My Head.” Pacing is an art form and Wylder has figured out the formula.

Track Stuck On Repeat: The vibe of “If I Love You” brings us back to our teen years when we contemplated less complicated matters of life in a way that gave them far more weight than they deserved. Young love was high stakes, and “If I Love You” goes all-in on our 90s nostalgia feels.

And that means…

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Sit and Spin

Ian Ferguson’s State Of Gold

IanFergusonReview

Artist: Ian Ferguson

Album: State Of Gold

Reason We’re Cranking It: With what seems to be a countless number of boutique record labels focused on the quality of their releases and not the quantity, it’s easy for the DIYers to get overlooked in what feels like a modern day songwriting renaissance. But, like all good things, the cream rises to the top, and while “State of Gold” may never reach that status in terms of sales, the antiquated ways of valuing music – and experiencing it as a listener – do very little to stop an individual, in this case Ferguson, from bringing their own quality-over-quantity to the masses.

What The Album Tells Us About Him: Not only did Ferguson play all of the instruments that can be heard on the album, but he also recorded, engineered and mixed the entire collection on his own, capturing his artistic vision in a way that few artists are capable of. And while some songwriters may go this path to control their own destiny, for Ferguson it feels more like the music is in control and he is ushering it where it needs to go as opposed to the other way around.

Track Stuck On Repeat: Beatles fans will feel the Sgt. Pepper’s pop of “Deep Beneath the Waves,” which like the name suggests, flows in on a current of psychedelic movement that picks you up in one place and drops you off in an entirely different one.

And that means…

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