It's been a hot minute since our CD of the Month hasn't it? This time around, it's not quite a CD. At all. It's the freshest release from Apes Tapes, analogue and all.
I am happy to report that the fine folks of Radiation City are not only comely as hell—surprise, they’re talented, too! Radiation City’s first full length, The Hands That Take You, is a gem; subtle and beautiful and strange, and classy enough to make me feel underdressed for the occasion of listening (admittedly, I was eating cold beans out of a can, in my underwear).
What’s most wonderfully surreal about The Hands That Take You is the future-nostalgia it evokes. A remembrance of things not yet passed, you could say. The album sounds washed-out and faraway all the way through, but never dated or irrelevant; more like found audio ephemera from a space cantina.
Radiation City manages an impressive breadth within such a steady aesthetic. The album opens with “Babies,” a snappy, spacey slide into another world. The tracks slip from haunting (“Summer Is Not An Act I”) to playful (“Salsaness”) with more grace than I have ever managed slipping from any thing to any other thing, ever. Lizzy Ellison’s voice lends itself perfectly to the atmosphere Radiation City creates—it’s bittersweet and delicate, but strong, and Cameron Spies’ saucy crooning plays well against it, especially when given a more prominent role—“Park” opens with an adorable lyrical bob and weave that sets off the wild crash of sound to come like a tickle before a rump-slap. Except, you know, classier. -Jenn Fritschy