Music Reviews

Little Darla Has a Treat For You

Volume 17

Darla

I can’t say I’ve heard every volume in this series, but the ten or so I have are consistently eye-opening collections of music from artists familiar and unknown. And this one is no exception.

Taking a heavy anapop bent with tracks from Mark Robinson, Toyen, Barcelona, and Flowchart, Little Darla 17 displays an interesting up-and-comer in label pulCec (I wager it has come connection with mr. trevor hollAnd), which has four tracks on here and all are solid showings. Of special note are Mark Robinson’s “Dilated Pupils,” which follows on the thrummy stacatto guitar patterns he brought to Flin Fon, and Lu’s “Mood Elevator,” a subtly tranced space odyssey with a gentle green chorus.

Collette Carter’s “Wait” could easily pass for one of This Mortal Coil’s darker moments – in contrast to Belgian guitaristic Dim Dim, whose fauxwaiian “Riri” is a study in overtracked steel string plucking. The Photon Band turn in another slice of Abbey Road with “Beachwood Park,” a rough-but-ready chunk of British psychedelia. Ashley Park’s “The Great Divide” is a down-tempoed number reminiscent of The Velvet Underground’s “Rock and Roll” but with a loose swagger all its own. My Morning Jacket abandon their usual mopey mood for the ultrafunked (but still a tad mopey) “Tyrone.”

As is typical, a listen to a Little Darla comp has me wondering and exploring a dozen new paths in music. It’s a quarterly roadmap to the most interesting corners of music, and worth catching whenever you can.

Darla Records; http://www.darla.com


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