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Album Reviews – Vandoliers – Yola – Feels – and more!

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SHARK SANDWICH – Fast Album Reviews for Those on the Go

February 22, 2019 – Vol. 87

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Music reviews come in all sizes, but you’re busy and do not have time for flowery language… or sentences, really.

Spinal Tap gave the world the greatest album review of all time:

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Welcome to our “Shark Sandwich” — razor-sharp reviews that sum up an album in five sentences or less.

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Feels – Post Earth

Los Angeles-based quirky garage rockers, Feels, may have a sorta famous/influential dad in their midst (Google it), but they stand on their own strongly and confidently. If you like Mission of Burma and Sleater-Kinney, but are sick to death of the music of 2019, you should be eating Feels up with a grapefruit spoon. Sometimes music comes around at the perfect time to cure what ails you, and Feels might be it. It might not be, too, but Post Earth is certainly worth a listen, and if it doesn’t cure you, it still might cause you to go whip some shitties in the Rite Aid parking lot at 2am, and really, that sounds all right, too.

Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles

Best Song: “Find a Way”

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Yola – Walk Through Fire

British singer/songwriter, Yola, is not a household name as of this writing, but ho-ly shit is she about to become one. When she opens up her pipes on the chorus of the opening, “Faraway Look,” you get honest, hand-on-heart chills. Yola sounds a bit like Dusty Springfield for 2019, but this languid album is anything but a copy. Yola serves up a soundscape that is perfect for late night drinking and reflection. Dan Auerbach’s production and the songs themselves do not strive to stop you in your tracks, but they will, brothers and sisters, they will.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 whistles

Best Song: “Faraway Look”

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Murray A. Lightburn – Hear Me Out

Reminiscent of Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker, Murray A. Lightburn is here to scratch that chamber folk itch you have been fighting for a long time. Fight it no longer, as Hear Me Out is to worm its way into your brain, and make your life just a little more… emotional. This is perfectly composed orchestral pop, and all the feels will come to the surface when you spin it. Go ahead and send that text or email to so-and-so, pick up the phone, but just reach out. It means everything.

Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles

Best Song: “Belleville Blues”

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Julia Jacklin – Crushing

Australian songwriter Julia Jacklin takes pains to not sand off the edges of the tracks that make up the expansive Crushing. Sometimes they’re shockingly spare as on “Good Guy” or “Comfort,” but the next moment rollicking on “You Were Right” and “Pressure to Party.” Impressively, Jacklin has a number of nearly perfect songs on Crushing. “Head Alone” is building into something special, and in this reporter’s humble opinion, the rocking songs are going to make you shimmy in your chair, car, beach blanket, therapist’s couch, whatever, wherever–it is always time for quality rock and roll.

Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles

Best Song: “Head Alone”

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Vandoliers – Forever

It’s rare that a band’s sound utterly and completely sounds like where they are from, and Vandoliers are from Texas. Can you tell? If your ears aren’t broken, you sure as hell can. Forever is a dusty, speed-fed cowpunk gallop through a wall of empties, and I’ll be goddamned if it isn’t exhilarating. The country comes through, and the Latin horn and violins flavor this rock and roll gumbo. Put on some cowboy boots, and smash your guitar on the drummer’s bass drum.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 whistles

Best Song: “Sixteen Years”

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All artists are available on iTunesAmazonGooglePlay, and wherever else better music is sold, streamed, downloaded, or performed on tour.

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NewsWhistle music contributor Chad Werner is “ahead of the curve, behind the times.” You can contact this rock n’ roll sphinx at chad@newswhistle.com (e-mail) or @scooternotmoped (Twitter).

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Lead-In Image – Composite

  • Album and sleeve – Courtesy of  imagefactory / Shutterstock.com
  • Main album cover – Courtesy of Blablo101 / Shutterstock.com
  • Album collage – Feels – Wichita Recordings; Julia Jacklin – Polyvinyl Records; Murray A. Lightburn – Dangerbird Records; Vandoliers – Bloodshot Records; and Yola – Easy Eye Sound.