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It’s a perennial problem in our ever-connected, incessantly-on-line age—how to keep up with new music. Fugitive Sounds is (let’s be candid) a minor blog among the countless sites offering commentary on contemporary music and audio production, but we still receive, on average, 300 emails each day from artists’ managers, record labels, and promoters, all asking us to hawk their latest “new thing” on our site. And like most of our readers, we work day jobs; the time each week that we can devote to active “listening” of any new artist, new record, or new single is woefully short. So what’s the remedy?

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Well, here at F|S, we have adopted a policy where we won’t, deliberately, try to keep up. Sometimes, we’ll review new releases; other times, we’ll rhapsodize on our favorites from years past. (Don’t worry, we won’t be writing up our “feelings” about “Stairway” or anything Steve Miller ever wrote.)

Sometimes, we’ll report on a show from the “latest-next-big-thing.” Other times, we’ll write up an artist or songwriter who, despite her retreat from the lime-light, still occupies our attention and imagination.

In that context, we offer the following artists’ work—individuals or bands whom we think are worthy of your regard. Maybe their records are a year old; perhaps they’re just bursting on the scene. The timing is not what is important; the music is what matters. We hope you understand that ethos. This is the first post in our series of “What Matters.” We hope you’ll enjoy.

So here’s some cool music:

 

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I’m kinda digging the latest release from the Salad Boys. It’s jangly pop of the sort that reminds of early R.E.M., with a similar reverence for open chords and some lo-fi fuzzy sounds on the choruses and solos. Plus, they are from New Zealand, which automatically confers on them a certain coolness.

 

 

Laura Stevenson got semi-panned by Pitchfork for her last albumWheel, which I thought was a fantastic record, both in terms of songwriting and production. (Candidly, the fact that the “de-facto taste-maker Pitchfork” hated on the record only made me a stronger proponent of its loveliness.)

 

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Well, Stevenson is back, with a new record, Cocksure, to be released by New Jersey’s Don Giovanni Records on October 30. The first single off the album is pop perfection, and is entitled “Torch Song.” Step aside, Ingrid Michaelson. You’ve got competition with the TV music managers.

 

 

So that’s all for tonight. Check back here in the morning for more news and commentary.  Sweet dreams, Fugitive readers.