WMSC Music Picks: April 2022

Written by on April 10, 2022

Welcome to WMSC Music Picks – a collaboration of music reviews of members from our radio station!

 

“First Class” – Khruangbin

Review By Maya Stolper 

The first time I added Khruangbin to a playlist of mine was in January of 2020 and I haven’t been able to stop listening to this Texas based trio since; the group consists of guitarist Mark Speer, bassist Laura Lee, and drummer Donald “DJ” Johson. I recently saw this band at Radio City Music Hall and their performance absolutely blew my mind. I decided to focus on one of their newer songs, “First Class,” off of their album Mordechai (2020). It was honestly hard to choose my favorite song off of this album, but I just absolutely love the flow of this song and after having seen the band perform live, I’ve been able to find an even deeper love for all of their music. Their album Mordechai has seriously had such a grip on me lately and I can honestly say “Khruangbin” is even better live than in their recorded music; the band’s discography truly comes to life with their stage presence and it is just incredible. This song in particular caught my attention because of its funky hook and interesting percussive patterns. The song barely has any lyrics but it doesn’t feel like anything is missing, if that makes sense. I couldn’t recommend this band more! 

 

“State of Love and Trust (Live MTV Unplugged)” – Pearl Jam

Review By Maya Stolper

I’ve always been familiar with Pearl Jam, since my Dad has been a fan for as long as I’ve been alive; he made sure they were one of the first artists I could get my infantile ears on. But it wasn’t until recently that I finally decided to give their Live MTV Unplugged album a listen. WOW am I late to the party on this one… 30 years late to be exact. They have such an incredible sound live and I love Eddie Vedder’s scream at the beginning of the song, it really adds to the energy of the performance and it makes me feel like I’m in the audience of the taping. If you love Pearl Jam as much as my Dad does, you should give this album another listen, because you might rekindle a love for it. On the other hand, if you’re like me and have always heard Pearl Jam’s name thrown around in adults’ mouths, I suggest you try this album out because you’re bound to find a song that catches your attention. 

 

“No Woman” – Whitney

Review By Yak Ferstenberg

“No Woman” by Whitney is a psychedelic lo-fi folk song with elements of mariachi music. Whitney sings in a lowkey androgynous demeanor, even if the mix is filled with warm electric guitars, polyrhythmic congas, and swelling strings. The horns during the chorus of this song sound triumphant and climax to some of the fuzziest music I’ve heard in a while. The song evolves into a true celebration, becoming more and more orchestrated from just a voice and his guitar. The song is a true triumph and a masterclass in musical tension and release. If you are ever having a bad day, the nostalgic timbre of this song will surely bring a swelling of happy times. The lyrics of the song evoke the feeling of just letting the good times roll and not caring about a thing in the world. This Chicago-based band has done wonders, and it shows because the song has 80 million plays on Spotify.

 

“Gunpowder” – Vashti Bunyan

Review By Yak Ferstenberg

Vashti Bunyan is an English singer who started in the ’70s, but did not get recognized until thirty years after she started. Her music is incredibly soothing and many feel like lullabies. Her song “Gunpowder” is no different. Listening to this song is akin to being rocked to sleep in a crib. The plethora of gently plucked strings and Bunyan’s breathy voice feels like a warm hug. Her song takes on a motherly quality. Her comforting lyrics about returning feel cyclical in nature as they represent the end but also a new beginning. This song is off of Bunyan’s final and fourth album, Heartleap, which she released back in 2014. Within the context of the album, it is another melancholy banger, but the melancholy of this particular tune makes it feel right at home with the spring season. Listen to this song on a long walk and you’ll be able to let yourself go to the blooming greenery.

 

“Welcome Home” – Vein.fm*

Review By Lauren Bentivegna

Welcome Home” by hardcore metal band Vein.fm came out earlier this year as a part of the bands newest album, This World is Going to Ruin You. This is the very first song on the album and it welcomes us into Vein.fm’s world of unique and experimental heavy metal, which some consider to be within the hardcore punk genre. This one minute and eighteen second song is heavy hitting and chaotic, with very few lyrics screamed throughout the song. If you’re a metal and/or hardcore music fan and want to listen to something heavy and exciting, I recommend giving this song a shot. 

 


“Super Saturated” – Drug Church

Review By Lauren Bentivegna

Super Saturated” by the post-hardcore band Drug Church released on their most recent album titled Hygiene which debuted roughly two months ago. This song is super melodic and fun to jump around to as the rhythm has the perfect pace. The lead vocalist has a great voice that perfectly balances between singing and yelling. This song is great for people looking for something slightly heavier than pop gf-punk, but softer than hardcore punk.

Lauren recently wrote a concert review for Drug Church – you can read it here

 

“Teenagers” – My Chemical Romance*

Review By Víctor Muñiz Rosa

Are you really emo if you don’t listen to My Chemical Romance at least once? In their most acclaimed album, The Black Parade, they released the banger “Teenagers.” The best way to describe this song is by talking about another song. Have you listened to the classic Pink Floyd song, “Another Brick in The Wall?” Well, this is the emo version of this classic. Talking about teenage angst and how adults try to control them instead of letting them be free. With the iconic line such as “Teenagers scare the living [–] out of me,” MCR sets the tone not only for how adolescents feel, but what adults think when dealing with teens. Gerard Way in his prime, the vocals are filled with his iconic and melodic screech with the excellent guitar, bass and drums the band is known for. A classic in the emo world, it delivers a statement of how society deals with different demographics.

 

“The Kill (Bury Me)” – 30 Seconds To Mars

Review By Víctor Muñiz Rosa

Before winning an Academy Award for Actor in a Supporting Role for Dallas Buyers Club and becoming the Joker, Jared Leto had an emo phase with his band 30 Seconds to Mars. In their second debut album, A Beautiful Lie, “The Kill (Bury Me)” was released. It’s one of those songs that you must sing from the top of your lungs… Not only for Leto’s vocals, but the intense drums and guitars that follow the melodic voice. This song has themes about lost love. The person narrating the story is trying to change so that he can be accepted by their lover. However, they realize that they have found their true self. Not only do these songs juggle love, but also self-esteem and how a relationship can damage or enhance the perception one has of themselves. Give it a listen! I assure you, it’s a better experience than Morbius.

 

“No Place Like Home” – Egypt Central

Review By Kyle Pepitone

Let me clear up a common misconception, I don’t listen to Ice Nine Kills because I like heavy and aggressive music (okay, that is part of the reason I listen to them). The real selling point of the band for me was their clever word play. Don’t believe me? Well here’s another band that does the same. Egypt Central’s “No Place Like Home,” if you couldn’t guess, is inspired by The Wizard of Oz. Aside from the catchy tune and banging chorus, the lyrics themselves are why I enjoy the song so much. Lines like “The world around you changed / The black and gray have faded,” “Scared crows / The lions hiding fears,” and “Brick by brick we’ll make it,” are obvious references to characters and plot points of the film. The film references tie in perfectly with the actual message of the song of waking up in a world you are no longer familiar with, paraphrasing the line “I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore” as part of the chorus. This isn’t Egypt Central’s first time doing this, however. In 2011, they released the song “White Rabbit” which took inspiration and lyrics from Alice In Wonderland, and they nailed the feat both times.

 

“Hunting Season” – Ice Nine Kills

Review By Kyle Pepitone

Oh, hey! I was just talking about them. That’s right, after releasing their sixth studio album, Welcome To Horrorwood: The Silver Scream 2, Ice Nine Kills are back with “Hunting Season.” You can ask around at WMSC and anyone will tell you I absolutely lost it when I saw they were coming out with a new song and I was frantically trying to figure out what movie the new song could be based on. Well, I would’ve been looking for quite a while because “Hunting Season” is not based on any movie… rather, it was written by the band for the video game PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. However, that’s not to say it lacks quality because of this. The lyrics still hold the tried and true Ice Nine Kills formula of clever references, making nods to aspects in the game like landing and gathering supplies, and always watching your back as every other player is against you in the game. Melodically, it’s one of their slower songs and has mostly clean vocals, but it is still one you can rock out to along with the rest of their discography.

Emol/Editor’s Note: Kyle obsessed with Ice Nine Kills? Can confirm. It’s hardcore. Respectfully.  

 

“Kakee” – SOFI TUKKER

Review By Emily ‘Emol’ McCormack

Hearing Sophie and Tucker’s vocals always brings a smile to my face. The duo began doing daily live streams from day one of the COVID-19 pandemic, and they quickly became household names. Though not the happiest of times, their music reminds me of getting through the start of remote learning and trying to make the best out of a bad time. I must admit that I don’t know Portuguese at all… but that didn’t stop me from loving their hit “Swing,” so based on vibes alone I’m loving this new single as well. I found out later that “Swing” is actually a song about guavas, and thanks to Google translate I discovered that “Kakee” is about persimmons (actually spelled caqui). They love fruit and I love that for them. SOFI TUKKER’s next album WET TENNIS (When Everyone Tries To Evolve, Nothing Negative Is Safe) will be released on April 29, and their US/Canadian tour begins in May! I’m looking forward to new songs and good vibes from these two beautiful humans. 

 

“I’M ALREADY DEAD (feat. DREAMERS)” – Animal Sun

Review By Emily ‘Emol’ McCormack

YESSSSS – another Animal Sun track! This is another single from their album Generation Waiting, which releases this Summer. This time, the LA based band is joined with the band Dreamers, whose song “Palm Reader” is often heard on WMSC! I first discovered Animal Sun with their single “girl in blue,” and first found Dreamers from their single “Heat Seeker,” which features grandson. Based on the music I already know from both artists, I knew this song was going to be epic when I first saw the announcement on Instagram. I absolutely love the cover art, and can definitely see this song being a part of my daily playlist for a long time to come. 

 

 

*These songs contain explicit language