Stereo Mind Game
By Daughter

Daughter are an English indie folk trio formed in 2010. Stereo Mind Game is their third album, inspired by lead member Elena Tonra’s long-distance relationship. The songs, in their lyrics and music, explore emotions evoked by separation, longing, imagining a future together – holding on and letting go.

The LP opens with the Intro, an instrumental piece, trance-like, setting the tone for what follows. On Be On Your Way, Tonra resigns to the distance between her and her lover, saying, “I won’t hold you back”. However, she is hopeful; “So, I’ll meet you on another planet if the plans change”.

On Party, she sings, “And I refuse to believe that there’s a problem, you see”, which shows denial, rooted in a fear of losing the memories they have made together, good and bad. Tonra is grappling with them as they slither away like “a rattlesnake”. It’s a mind game, like the album’s title suggests. A dedicated drum piece lends a soft-rock vibe, offering variety.

Dandelion encompasses just what the namesake flower symbolises – hope and freedom. Even though Tonra is “waitin’ for replies”, she’s “watchin’ dandelions growin’ by the grove”.

With stringsy melodies that conjure psychedelic feels, more on some songs such as Neptune, this one’s truly a mind game to play.


The Record
By Boygenius

Formed in 2018, Boygenius is a three-member American indie rock supergroup, comprising of individually successful artists, Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus. The Record is their first studio album released via Interscope. Prior to this, they put out two EPs on Matador.

Listening to this 42-minute LP gives you a sense that the songs, the music, the lyrics, the vocals… are untainted, even raw, emotionally speaking. However, it’s all packaged with artistic finesse.

The tracks are strung together by a common element, love, the various facets of which are touched upon across the 12 songs. On Emily I’m Sorry, we see forgiveness play out. On Satanic, a certain rebellious emotion; the repeating guitar piece on this one is catchy.

Without You Without Them, a short, harmonious acapella creation comes as a nice surprise. Characteristic of a monologue, a plea to a loved one: “Give me everything you’ve got” and “I’ll give everything I’ve got/ Please, take what I can give”.

While all the songs exhibit rock musical elements from stringsy sounds to the rhythmic da-dum of the drums and wooshy cymbals, The Record offers a mix with soft tunes, which add depth to the album.