AOTY 2023
hemlocke springs - enknee1
Enknee1 comes as Hemlocke Springs' most acclaimed song yet, and with its vast array of bubbly melodies and intimate songwriting, it's not hard to see why.

I couldn't get the same enjoyment as most people out of her last few singles because of how unspecific they felt compared to Girlfriend. I know I have compared everything she released after her hit single to it, but I promise it comes from a sincere place. There's no denying Sever the Blight and Heavun are objectively good songs, but I don't ... read more

hemlocke springs - heavun
Hemlocke Springs keeps riding on her consistent run of 80s throwback music in Heavun, only now pulling influences from that era's club scene.

The single stands as her best-produced song yet and follows the same writing style as her two previous releases (meaning it doesn't have the introspective nature of her Bedroom Pop songs and comes off as more refined and open to interpretation.) I get the appeal of this style, but still, I find the broadness in theme and nostalgic aesthetic undermining ... read more

hemlocke springs - sever the blight
On Sever the Blight, Isimeme "Naomi" Udu—better known as Hemlocke Springs—leaves the Bedroom Pop style that put her on the map and aims for a more epic and elegant presentation and does so gracefully.

While Stranger Danger! also didn't have Udu's recognizable intimate production, she does a much better job at delivering a strong and engaging idea this time around. I love the contrast between the classical instrumentation and synthetic elements the chorus brings and the ... read more

hemlocke springs - Stranger Danger!
Following the success of Girlfriend, Hemlocke Springs expands her sound into Electropop territory but without the same level of presence and personality as her previous single.

Horror movies are a clear inspiration for this song (after all, it wasn't released on Friday the 13th for no reason), which, in theory, would be a great match with the artist's personality; yet, I found her delivery to be unimpressive, except for the chorus and some other moments where she doesn't stick to the ... read more

hemlocke springs - girlfriend
Hemlocke Springs' second single thrives on how uncomplicated it is.

I felt like she didn't show off her personality enough in her first single, so having Girlfriend as this enthusiastic and focused follow-up was a pleasant surprise. I love how the instrumental matches the increasingly over-the-top lyrics, as the character Hemlocke is singing about tries to hide the fact that she feels unstable next to this person by playing this self-absorbed and nonchalant persona.

As for complaints, there's ... read more

hemlocke springs - gimme all ur luv
Hemlocke Springs' debut focuses much more on this intimate and delicate 80s sound than what I think is her selling point: her personality.

I like the progression the instrumentation goes through during the first half, but the concept expressed in the lyrics is too insubstantial and doesn't reflect the artist's strengths properly. However, the pre-chorus brought my attention back just for the chorus to then completely absorb me with this enchanting melody backed up by some bubbly synths easing ... read more

Squid - Match Bet
Match Bet feels colder and more atmospheric compared to The Cleaner, but it's just as rhythmic and mature as the previous single for Town Centre. Put the complex guitar arrangements and drum patterns with some jazzy horns as a seasoning and an experimental song structure, and you have this odd and melodic piece of Post-Punk. It's dynamic, raw, a bit moody, and quite a fun listen; yet, I can't deny the 4-minute runtime was not enough to make the song feel complete and fully developed - unlike ... read more
Squid - The Cleaner
Five months after their last single, Squid returns sounding more realized and "Squid" than ever. To me, the biggest highlight in The Cleaner is the stylish and grim bass that I can only describe as "a pretty devil in a leather jacket." It sounds so slick and cool, but it's not the only good part about the song. There's also this wild synth line that is so uncontrollable that it feels improvised and, per usual for Dance-Punk music, angular and quirky guitar chords, vocals, ... read more
Squid - Houseplants
I've been waiting to listen to this song since I noticed this was one of the community's favorite Squid songs, and now I can see why it is so. The single is a thorough thesis on Art/Dance Punk with Talking Heads as the primary source of influence (they even reference a Once in a Lifetime line during the outro). Houseplants is more of a modernization of this quirky and manic punk style rather than an innovative song. I don't see this as a problem though, as, in any band's early years, the best ... read more
Squid - The Dial
Since I reviewed Lie With Squid / Live With Squid, I've been waiting to listen to this new version of The Dial since it was their first song that felt like Squid. I can't deny I miss the more sweet and slow-paced moments from the original, but there's no denying the updated version is an improvement in every possible aspect. The mixing sounds better, the composition - even if in line with most Post-Punk music - has a lot more punch to it, the performances are rawer and more unpredictable, and ... read more
Squid - Terrestrial Changeover Blues (2007 - 2012)
Honestly, I wasn't expecting this to be so much fun. Considering the title and the band's previous releases, I figured Terrestrial Changeover Blues would be just another dabble in the abstract Art Rock sound, just like Lino. In reality, this single falls more in line with the Post-Punk aesthetic they would become known for, but a bit more artsy and not as mature and recognizable as what they did on their debut album. The vocals have a lot more personality, the composition, even if still a bit ... read more
Squid - Lino
As much as I enjoy listening to Squid diving into more atmospheric and abstract music, I feel this is more of a necessary step for them to find a solid and characteristic sound than a staple in their discography.

The most apparent indication of this is the unremarkable vocal performances, which weren't that great in their previous releases and didn't get any better with Lino. The driving melodies and riffs in Liquid Light and II are also pretty unimaginative, though at least the ambient ... read more

Squid - Lie With Squid / Live With Squid
Releasing this two-track long live EP was a smart move from Squid after their debut single since they were still figuring out their sound and dynamics as a band, and what better way to do that than releasing a couple of live recordings?

I'll first talk about Payment Plan since, apparently, it won't have a studio version released any time soon - which I can see why. The song feels very old-fashioned and nothing like Squid, as if they were covering a random late 60s song. It's long-winded, ... read more

Squid - Perfect Teeth
As my experience with Squid's music only goes knees-deep, I wasn't expecting their debut single to wander off their known Post-Punk sound so much. Of course, the lazy vocals, synthetic drums, and high-up electric guitar during the chorus are pretty much Post-Punk, but not the interesting kind they would come to release further in their discography. What got my attention was how atmospheric it all sounds, almost falling into ambient music during the outro - not to mention some of the apparent ... read more
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Recent Review Comments
On marvelgaryen's review of Priscilla - QUER DANÇAR (com Bonde do Tigrão)
"@jaosoars acho que pra ela realmente seguir nessa direção atual sem parecer oportunista é reconhecendo os erros do passado e deixando claro que não é mais essa pessoa. parece muito mais que ela está brincando com o público usando a nova aparência rebelde e músicas """do mundo""" como forma de ganhar atenção da comunidade queer. se ela realmente quisesse se redimir, pediria desculpas e seria mais clara sobre as suas intenções ao invés de ficar sambando na fala de "agora eu mudei mas não serei clara sobre oq estou fazendo e não irei repreender tudo oq a igreja (e eu) vem fazendo com vcs há tanto tempo"."

November Playlist