Welcome to Listeners Guild. In its present format this blog is designed to be a good place to window shop for new local and independent music that fits your own taste. I live in Minneapolis, so to me “local” means the Twin Cities metro area. Everything here is based on my personal listening habits but I do encourage everyone to participate either by joining the guild on Facebook or submitting your own posts.

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01 2014

Carla Bozulich: Boy

Carla BozulichLabel: Constellation Genre:alt rock, noise

Score: 4.50(y) Personality: 3/3/7/8 (minor, slow, hard, experimental)

Metacritic Score: 82

Release Date: Cart Cousins: St. Vincent, Beck, Angel Olsen, The War on Drugs

Comments: Manages to remind me of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds without sounding anything like him/them.

Favorite Song: Don’t Follow Me


04 2014

Perfect Pussy: Say Yes to Love

Perfect PussyLabel:  Captured Tracks Genre: punk, noise rock

Score: 4.50 Personality: (3/8/8/8) minor, fast, hard, experimental

Metacritic Score:

Release Date: 3/18/14 Cart Cousins: Cloud Nothings, Mac Demarco, Angel Olsen, The War on Drugs

Comments: Best guitarwork I’ve heard on a punk album in a long time. They mix it up and keep speed. Absolute perfect signal to noise ratio. Ambitious but delivers. I love the ending. Chaotic and unconventional.

Favorite Song: Bells


04 2014

La Dispute: Rooms of the House

La DisputeLabel: Staple Records Genre: post hardcore, emo, indie rock

Score: 3.00 Personality: 3/6/7/6 (minor, fast, hard, experimental)

Metacritic Score: 88

Release Date: Cart Cousins: Taking Back Sunday, Bayside, Fireworks, I Am the Avalanche

Comments: Well formed but very emo. His writing is fantastic but I don’t consider lyrical content when I score music. They sound more Sparta than Mars Volta which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Great for fans of prose and narrative lyrics. Their songs succeed or fail on their rhythm section. I like their grooves better than their rock. Their dynamics are mushy (two-speed with no smash cuts), hooks fall flat.They seem to be a direct reaction to pop (which makes it pop in my mind) as opposed to a proposed alternative to pop (which would have made it alternative).

Favorite Song: Woman (in mirror)


03 2014

Drive By Truckers: English Oceans

Drive By TruckersLabel: ATO Records Genre: alt country

Score: 3.00 Personality: 7/6/4/3 (major, fast, smooth, traditional)

Metacritic Score: 78

Release Date: 3/4/2014 Cart Cousins: The Hold Steady, Beck, Jason Isbell, and older Drive By Truckers albums

Comments: Countryish. Somewhere between Jayhawks, Hold Steady and Superchunk. Not usually my cup of tea but a few solid tracks caught my ear.

Favorite Song: Made Up of English Oceans


03 2014

Gem Club: In Roses

Gem ClubLabel: Hardly Art Genre: chamber pop

Score: 2.50 Personality: n/a

Metacritic Score: 76

Release Date: 1/28/2014 Cart Cousins: St. Vincent, Broods, Warpaint, Damien Jurado

Comments: very piano. Very very piano. Very pretty but horrible for office productivity. One song stood out. Very defined but perhaps too specific. Relies too heavily on arpeggios.

Favorite Song: Soft Season

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03 2014

Quilt: Held In Splendor

QuiltLabel: Mexican Summer Genre: psych-rock, indie rock

Score: 3.25 Personality: 7/6/4/4 (major, fast, smooth, traditional)

Metacritic Score: 75

Release Date: Cart Cousins: Real Estate, Hospitality, The Men, St. Vincent

Comments: Trippy, playful, vocals are lazy and meandering (in a good way). Laid back optimistic psych-rock, nothing shocking or challenging which may be a good change of pace for a playlist that’s not already too psych-heavy (the general sound is starting to feel a little trendy to me).

Favorite Song: Arctic Shark


03 2014

I Break Horses: Chiaroscuro

I Break HorsesLabel: Bella Union Genre: electronic, shoegaze

Score: 3.00 Personality: 3/4/4/3 (minor, slow, smooth, traditional)

Metacritic Score: 74

Release Date: Cart Cousins: Phantogram, Warpaint, Cheatahs, Dum Dum Girls

Comments: Trippy. Nice. Pretty. Dreamy. Halfway between School of Seven Bells and Purity Ring. Simple and ambient, but sounds more reductive than complex. Very well composed but no stand-out tracks.

Favorite Song: Disclosure


03 2014

Hospitality: Trouble

HospitalityLabel: Merge Genre: indie rock

Score: 3.50 Personality: 7/6/5/7 (major, fast, experimental)

Metacritic Score: 74

Release Date: Cart Cousins: Dum Dum Girls, Real Estate, St. Vincent, Angel Olsen

Comments: smooth and groovy, sultry, but not too serious. Very well balanced. Elegant hooks. Creative, inventive, upbeat, and fun.

Favorite Song: I Miss Your Bones


02 2014

Damien Jurado: Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son

Damien JuradoLabel: Secretly Canadian Genre: folk rock, indie folk

Score: 3.00 Personality: 3/4/3/3 (minor, slow, smooth, traditional)

Metacritic Score: 79

Release Date: 1/21/14 Cart Cousins: Beck, Angel Olsen, Hospitality, Bombay Bicycle Club

Comments: Does the alt-folk singer-songwriter thing. Not my usual cup of tea so I can’t say much, but according to Metacritic this album is as good as Saint Bartlett (’10) but not as good as Maraqopa (’12) or Where Shall You Take Me (’03). Magic Number and Jericho Road are tracks worth checking out.

Favorite Song: Magic Number



02 2014

Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings: Give The People What They Want

Sharon JonesLabel: Daptone Records Genre: R&B, Soul

ScorePersonality: 8/6/3/2 (major, fast, smooth, traditional)

Metacritic Score: 79

Release Date: 1/14/14 Cart Cousins: Rosanne Cash, Lucinda Williams, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Pixies

Comments: Keeping Mowtown alive and well in the new millennium

Favorite Song:


02 2014