Seeking New Music Recs (Divert Me from Auto-Repeat)
January 17, 2019 6:22 PM   Subscribe

Lately I've been listening to Methyl Ethel and Kurt Vile a ton. Too much. Although they're not identical in style at all, there's something about both singers that's caught me. Any recommendations for other male singers with similarly lazy yet catchy tunes?
posted by MCMLXXXIV to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (13 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Reminds me a little of Toro Y Moi on Carpark records. There are a number of other artists m & f on Carpark that pop into my mind as well, like Class Actress, Ear Pwr, Teen, Takagi Masakatsu.
posted by chr1sb0y at 3:01 AM on January 18

If you had to ask me I'd say Methyl Ethyl sounds a lot like MGMT, but I could be wrong.

Kurt Vile is on Matador Records. I'd recommend his label mates AC Newman and Ted Leo. Excellent songwriting and hooks a-plenty.

If you dig AC Newman then you can proceed to his work with The New Pornographers.
posted by JoeZydeco at 6:40 AM on January 18

I'm kind of a broken record (pun) when it comes to recommending The Paper Kites to, well, just about everyone, but I think it's a good fit here. Their style is so eclectic that you're bound to like something. Here's their YouTube channel.

They released two albums in 2018. On the Train Ride Home is predominately acoustic guitar and vocal, very stripped down and mellow. On the Corner Where You Live is more of the full band sound, which is alt-pop-rock I guess.

Their previous release twelevefour is probably the most accessible and sounds the most like it's ready for mass airplay, but it still has their unique sound. States was before that. It's more ethereal and eclectic. It's the one that made me a fan. Their two career-starting EPs, Woodland and Young North are more folk-sounding. Although still excellent, I don't listen to those as much.
posted by The Deej at 7:07 AM on January 18

When I listened to the Methyl Ethel track, I immediately thought of Twin Shadow (I think the first two albums are your best bet). Examples you might like: At My Heels ; Castles in the Snow

Due to the "lazy drawl" vocals and virtuosic guitar ability, Kurt Vile reminds me of J. Mascis (solo material is more stripped-down and acoustic-leaning; Dinosaur Jr. is ...less so).

J. Mascis: See You At The Movies ; Several Shades of Why (session) ; Web So Dense
Dinoasaur Jr.: In a Jar ; Goin' Home ; Just Like Heaven (Cure cover)
posted by mean square error at 8:19 AM on January 18

Don't know why Kurt Vile made me think of them, but I've been listening a lot of Rainbow Kitten Surprise lately. Kind of obsessed. They're different, but great.
posted by cross_impact at 12:48 PM on January 18

Great recommendations above.

One of my new favorites is Car Seat Headrest. Will Toledo (vocalist/songwriter/etc) is prolific, intelligent, but makes it seem kind of effortless. He developed a big following on Bandcamp, then got signed to Matador Records. His first two albums for them "Teens of Style" and "Teens of Denial" are playful. Last year, he released "Twin Fantasy" The album was originally written/released 10 years ago when he was a solo act. It was re-recorded / re-imagined with his backing band. Lyrics got updated. Sound is fuller. The band toured behind this record with the band Naked Giants. Then Naked Giants got absorbed into Car Seat Headrest. Anyway, it's good stuff.

Bodys is as good a place as anything to start.

Beach Life In Death is a sprawling 13-minute epic about young love, coming out, facing death, taking drugs, mental illness, and hope.

The Dinosaur Jr./J. Mascis note above made me think of the 90s, and you can't have 90s slacker-rock without Pavement. Start with any of their albums, "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" or "Slanted and Enchanted."

You could do worse than Cut Your Hair. Though pavement is no more, Steven Malkmus still writes music & performs with his new band, The Jicks.

Kurt Vile has a collaborator / spiritual kinship with Courtney Barnett (from Australia, like Methyl Ethel). I know you asked for male vocalists, but she's great, has a similar slacker vibe. They released an album last year called Lotta Sea Lice that is super fun. Courtney's solo work is good, too. Her album "Show Me How You Really Feel" was one of my favorites from last year. Check out her KEXP session.
posted by djwikiben at 3:33 PM on January 18

Oh yes, how could I forget Mac DeMarco. New-school slacker indie rock. I think Salad Days is a nice place to start. His latest album, This Old Dog, is a little more somber, but still good.
posted by djwikiben at 4:07 PM on January 18

I, too, have had Kurt Vile popping up in my music algorithms lately.
Often there alongside him is Mark Kozelek / Sun Kil Moon.
posted by D.Billy at 7:44 PM on January 18

Steve Gunn used to play with Vile, is an even better guitarist and has a slightly different kinda lazy voice. His new album came out today!
posted by saul wright at 8:13 PM on January 18

I have a real soft spot for Vance Joy at the moment.
posted by h00py at 12:46 AM on January 19

For me, Methyl Ethel always belong in the same category, vocals-wise, as Nick Allbrook from fellow Perth indie rockers, Pond.
posted by Sonny Jim at 2:01 PM on January 19

Thanks so much for these excellent recommendations! My ears are reinvigorated. I've been enjoying them all. Immediate playlist adds have been Twin Shadow, Mac DeMarco, Car Seat Headrest, Sun Kil Moon, and Pond but I'll be spending time going through each of these recs. Marking as resolved but always happy to hear any other tips.
posted by MCMLXXXIV at 10:12 AM on January 20 [1 favorite]

Walter Becker
posted by fourpotatoes at 1:06 PM on January 20

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