Thursday, December 20, 2012

3) Landmark - Apollo Ghosts (TOP 20 OF 2012)


Apollo Ghosts
You've Changed Records.

That Apollo Ghosts, after achieving Skeleton Crew Quarterly’s crushing 90% score in the spring, don’t have the numero uno spot on this year-end list says more about the SCQ office than it does about Landmark. Nothing says “black sheep” like a punk-fueled, impossibly catchy rock record surrounded by a growing proclivity for post-classical, ambient, sad-sack, etc-music but Apollo Ghosts made it stick with a ripe grove of riffs for the plucking. “What Are Your Influences?” spearheads an uninterrupted flow of tight guitar-rock and creative bluster without getting caught in ego or self-seriousness.

Perhaps you haven’t noticed but “indie-rock” has gradually become an oxymoron in parlance with popular music’s changing tide. To see that something has been lost amid the Grammy wins and high-profile crossover collaborations isn’t being contrary or snobbish; it’s understanding that embracing the mainstream means leaving the core need for independent music. Apollo Ghosts aren’t penning a new genre or stirring the cultural pot counter-clockwise but with “Weekend Fantasy”, “Why Can’t I Be the Man On Stage?”, “Guitar Brother” and virtually everything on show here, they’re a fresh reminder why real indie-rock cannot be topped. Oh, and you can grab that – for free, even – right here.

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