“Ballad of the Golden Hour”

Widowspeak’s 2011 self-titled debut was one of the best guitar pop albums of recent memory: a never-ending barrage of woozy pop hooks wrapped in ragged guitar and Molly Hamilton’s silky-smooth soprano. Now, the Brooklyn band is preparing to release its sophomore effort, Almanac, January 22 on Captured Tracks. “Ballad of the Golden Hour” is the first track to be released off that album, and while it retains the band’s characteristic beachy/folky sound, the cut also hints at a more anthemic direction for the band. “Ballad” starts off with a mix of surf and steel guitar (is that the musical equivalent of surf and turf?), but the real joy comes around the halfway mark, when the band snaps out of its daydream and amps up the guitarplay. Think the muddled harmonies of Baltimore contemporaries Beach House, spiked with a bit of Kurt Vile.

• Widowspeak: http://widowspeak.bandcamp.com
• Captured Tracks: http://capturedtracks.com

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.