In House #1809: New Apples in Stereo; The Shins in Salt Lake, Boise
It's been five long years since Robert Schneider's Apples in Stereo graced us with a new album, and even that one lacked the sunny, fuzzed-out pop the band had built their name upon. The unexplained gap, plus what were essentially Schneider's solo side projects The Marbles and Ulysses, caused some to begin to wonder if the Apples in Stereo would go the way of their once upon a time Elephant 6 brethren Neutral Milk Hotel, fading into a permanent hiatus. New Magnetic Wonder, the new album out on Elijah Wood's Simian label (along with co-conspirators yep roc), says no to that notion and in a big way. The album ranks well with anything Schneider's Apples have ever done, fitting in nicely in tone and substance with efforts like Her Wallpaper Reverie and The Discovery of a World Inside the Moone. In other words, it's a return to form with bouncy, psyched-out pop numbers like "Same Old Drag," and "7 Stars," alongside ambient snippets with names like "Vocoder Ba Ba," and "Droplet." The relative absence of drummer Hilarie Sidney, who split to spend more time on her own project High Water Marks, is noticeable, but she does contribute vocals and writing duties on two songs, including the splendid "Sunndal Song." The band is currently on the road supporting the new release, and will play Salt Lake City and Boise on March 31st and April 1st, respectively.
Also today, music from The Shins, who hit Salt Lake City's In the Venue tonight and Boise's Egyptian Theatre tomorrow night. The Portland-based band is, of course, touring in support of their third album, Wincing the Night Away, out late last month on Sub Pop. Not surprisingly, the generally well-received new effort has catapulted the band to new heights, marking Sub Pop's highest charting release since Nirvana's Nevermind. Despite that kind of popularity and (*yawn*) predictable hipster backlash, the album never even comes close to sucking.
In House #1809.
Focus: New release from the Apples in Stereo, New Magnetic Wonder, plus The Shins play Salt Lake City tonight and Boise tomorrow night. Also, new music from Aqueduct, Of Montreal, Yo La Tengo, and more.
Apples in Stereo, from New Magnetic Wonder:
In House PODCAST #259