Metz: Metz

When listening to the visceral eponymous debut of Ontario indie-core trio METZ, I cannot help but imagine the idea of Mudhoney's Mark Arm, who works for Sub Pop as their warehouse manager, smacking a copy of the group's demo on the A&R guy's desk lamenting, "Man, why aren't we signing bands like this anymore??"

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Loney, Dear: Loney, Noir

With a title and a band name like Loney, Dear, you wouldn’t be remiss to expect some severe wrist-slit baroque morbidity along the lines of Portishead.

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Chad VanGaalen: Skelliconnection

On Skelliconnection, Chad VanGaalen offers up a wealth of musical influences, somehow crafted into a listenable, if not exactly earth-shattering, album. One hears, in his sound, hints of Joseph Arthur, Cloud Cult, and any number of Sub Pop artists. It is perhaps no surprise, then, that he is being touted as a combination of Iron & Wine, The Postal Service, and The Shins.

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Kelley Stoltz: Below the Branches

Below the Branches eclecticism showcases Stoltz as a musician in the highest order, and someone who deserves a little more attention than the Johnny Come-Latelys.

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The Elected: Sun, Sun, Sun

Sun, Sun, Sun is a throwback record, chocked full of early 70s California rock – reminiscent of efforts of bands like Beachwood Sparks and The Thrills.

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John Vanderslice: Pixel Revolt

On Pixel Revolt, Vanderslice graciously straddles the bridge between songwriter and story-teller (there is a bridge, trust me), taking a J.D. Salinger meets Conor Oberst approach and layering his lyrics with dusky cellos, lightly strummed guitars, and floating beats.

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