A trying year politically delivered an incredibly strong year in music. With excellent albums by some established favorites like Guided By Voices and Superchunk as well formidable releases from rising acts such as Twin Foxes, Darklands, Ovlov, and Kal Marks we had plenty of sonic splendeur to keep us chugging along. In our first installment of 2018 in review we take time share some our favorites of the year. Most of these are available on Bandcamp, so if there something here that lands in your wheelhouse please consider supporting these artists in any way you can.
*Photo above taken at AS220 in Providence by Eleanor Dean
On May 11th Columbus OH’s lo-fi power pop concern, Connections will return with their 4th LP, Foreign Affairs on Trouble In Mind Records. Which follows 2016 nearly flawless Midnight Run album. For those unfamiliar, Connections have been churning out high caliber and fuzz covered indie pop for the better part of the last six years and the brand new track Isle Insane is no exception. If anything the new track shows the Ohio quintet refining their sound with even bigger hooks and razor sharp melodies with former 84 Nash members Andy Hampel and Kevin Elliott leading the charge.
We recently spoke with Connections’ bassist, Phillip Kim to gain some insight into the bands creative process and their recent signing to Trouble in Mind Records.
“The creative process is pretty much the same as the other albums. Andy (Hampel) brought new songs to practice directly after we finished Midnight Run. For whatever reason, we labored over them much longer this time. We went back to the legendary Musicol recording studios with this one and worked with Keith Hanlon. Great place, great vibe, good time. We were lucky to have Sharon Udoh from Counterfeit Madison contribute some piano/organ, and it was an absolute thrill to have the great Marcy Mays of Scrawl sing on a couple of the songs.”
“We’re not even sure how the signing with Trouble In Mind happened, Kevin has been in correspondence with Trouble In Mind’s, Bill Roe for years. He always sends Kevin nice care packages of new releases. Somewhere along the way he realized Kevin was in Connections, or Kevin solicited the last album to Bill. Either/or, Bill and Lisa were excited to hear that we had another record on the way and offered to put it out.” Philip Kim – Connections
Connections will be out on the road in support of Foreign Affairs which will include some dates with Kurt Vile and The Violators with a road trip worthy show at College Street Music Hall in New Haven, CT on June 15th.
Embrace the dual guitar jangle and literal hookfest of Isle Insane below.