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+ Donato Wharton - Body Isolations
+ Svalastog - Woodwork
+ Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
+ Rosy Parlane - Jessamine
+ Jarvis Cocker - The Jarvis Cocker Record
+ Múm - Peel Session
+ Deloris - Ten Lives
+ Minimum Chips - Lady Grey
+ Badly Drawn Boy - Born In The U.K.
+ The Hold Steady - Boys And Girls Together
+ The Blood Brothers - Young Machetes
+ The Places - Songs For Creeps
+ Camille - Le Fil
+ Wolf Eyes - Human Animal
+ Christina Carter - Electrice
+ The Decemberists - The Crane Wife
+ Junior Boys - So This Is Goodbye
+ Various Artists - Musics In The Margin
+ Rafael Toral - Space
+ Bob Dylan - Modern Times
+ Excepter - Alternation
+ Chris Thile - How To Grow A Woman From The Ground
+ Brad Mehldau - Live in Japan
+ M Ward - Post-War
+ Various Artists - Touch 25
+ The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
+ The White Birch - Come Up For Air
+ Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
+ Coachwhips - Double Death
+ Various Artists - Tibetan And Bhutanese Instrumental And Folk Music, Volume 2
+ Giuseppe Ielasi - Giuseppe Ielasi
+ Cex - Actual Fucking
+ Sufjan Stevens - The Avalanche
+ Leafcutter John - The Forest And The Sea
+ Carla Bozulich - Evangelista
+ Barbara Morgenstern - The Grass Is Always Greener
+ Robin Guthrie - Continental
+ Peaches - Impeach My Bush
+ Oakley Hall - Second Guessing
+ Klee - Honeysuckle
+ The Court & Spark - Hearts
+ TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
+ Awesome Color - Awesome Color
+ Jenny Wilson - Love And Youth
+ Asobi Seksu - Citrus
+ Marsen Jules - Les Fleurs
+ The Moore Brothers - Murdered By The Moore Brothers
+ Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
+ The 1900s - Plume Delivery EP
+ Alejandro Escovedo - The Boxing Mirror
+ Function - The Secret Miracle Fountain
+ Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
+ Loscil - Plume
+ Boris - Pink
+ Deadboy And The Elephantmen - We Are Night Sky
+ Glissandro 70 - Glissandro 70
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #2)
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #1)
+ The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics
+ The Glass Family - Sleep Inside This Wheel
+ Various Artists - Songs For Sixty Five Roses
+ The Fiery Furnaces - Bitter Tea
+ Motorpsycho - Black Hole/Blank Canvas
+ The Red Krayola - Introduction
+ Metal Hearts - Socialize
+ American Princes - Less And Less
+ Sondre Lerche And The Faces Down Quartet - Duper Sessions
+ Supersilent - 7
+ Band Of Horses - Everything All The Time
+ Dudley Perkins - Expressions
+ Growing - Color Wheel
+ Red Carpet - The Noise Of Red Carpet
+ The Essex Green - Cannibal Sea
+ Espers - II
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44.1 kHz Archive

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Los Arboles EP
True Love/Dim Mak

The sun is always setting in Dios' world, reflecting on a day that's passed. It's almost dark but it's still warm — it's kind of a downer but it's always, always beautiful and impossible not to fall into.

This five-song EP could be the Sunday record, the campfire collection or the CD you listen to on headphones just before bed. At times cynical and sarcastic, Los Arboles isn't your typical folk-pop record. It's a personal documentation of life's downers, made light with shimmering beats, sun-kissed harmonies and sweet, sweet melodies.

Backed by gay oo's and la-la-la's and built on delicate, climbing keys, swinging acoustic riffs and an occasional sample (birds, distant conversation), EP opener "All Said + Done" is at once hopeless and hopeful — a contradictory state that carries through the entire record, and one that's easy for most to identify with. "I know what I'm after/ But I think I know everything," singer/guitarist Kevin Morales sings, his lackadaisical vocals awash in echoes atop fluttering, emotive melodies. "I'm looking for answers/ Why can't you explain anything?”

"Bust Out the Candy," which begins with a snort, features disheveled carnival melodies, playful acoustics and a catchy beat. "I don't even talk much/ I don't say much anyway/ I've taught myself to be such/ An asshole each and every day," sneers Morales. He goes on to wonder why he does it: bust out the candy, swallow more brandy. Is it 'cause he doesn’t want to wake to another day? "Is it me or am I dumb/ Am I having any fun at all?" he asks.

With rubber band-snapping rhythms, distant keys, swirling acoustics, jingling tambourine and a stomping beat, "You’ll Get Yours" confronts an ex. Lyrics that seem meant for fast and loud sounds are instead sung in a seemingly harmless, frail way against subdued playing. "You said you'd always be there/ You know that was a lie," Morales coos, but clearly sneering. "Now it's time to move on/ So I hope you're satisfied/ Fuck all that shit/ Of staying friends.”

Counted off slow and fragile, "Tragic Lady" closes the record on the saddest note, with delicate acoustic strums, emotive melodies and piano that feels as if it's struggling to hold on. "Why can't I forget her, father?" he begs. "Oh mama, she's gone/ Without her I don't know who I am/ Someone tell me why she had to die/ Tragic lady come back."

Dios combine an appreciation for breezy '60s Californian pop with a gritty, sometimes sarcastic, tell-it-like-it-is honesty, for a result so engrossing it’s like the sunset — you wish it'd last forever. Or at least longer than five songs.

by Jenny Tatone

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