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  • Hear the latest from Denver's In the Whale on Radio...

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    Hear the latest from Denver's In the Whale on Radio 1190.

  • Hear the latest from Of Montreal on Radio 1190.

    Courtesy photo

    Hear the latest from Of Montreal on Radio 1190.



Pledge Drive

Fun things are happening every day at Radio 1190 during our pledge drive, including awesome live, on-air performances from bands, great conversations and opportunities to donate, where contributors can get discounted concert tickets, music packs, hoodies, water bottles, bottle openers and more. Call to donate: 303-735-7625; or visit Contributions can be made until Friday at 6 p.m.

Here are three wonderful albums we have spinning this week.

Coming out of the Denver DIY scene, formerly ambient experimentalist Sleepdial, French Kettle Station has released his debut album Mean Something. The album is incredibly short, but insanely varied.

French Kettle Station’s sound is highly influenced by the musician’s background in ambient and electronic, with all the drum parts created electronically, but the overall mood is dreamy, yet simultaneously anxious. Opening track, “Figure It Out,” begins with angular, post punk-tinged guitars, but the chorus opens up to an almost Cure-esque dream-pop hook. Other tracks, such as “Don’t Go To Zoo On Acid,” have a frantic and almost head-spinning drum pace, almost reminiscent of synthpunk.

Lyrically, French Kettle Station does a great job of being emotionally open without sounding too overly dramatic. Thematically, both sonically and lyrically, the album is very depressive and contemplative, but when large swells of synths and strings drench the anthem-like choruses, its apparent that French Kettle Station wants to focus on hope. Overall, the songs all fit incredibly well together and the overall mood makes the collection of short tracks very cohesive.

Denver’s blues-rock experts In the Whale released the album Nate & Eric this past summer and the drum/guitar duo bring a fuzzy style of blues rock, along with elements of hardcore punk, metal and noise rock.

It’s apparent the duo is influenced by blues legends (see: track name “Robert Johnson”), but influences of Mastodon, Dead Kennedys and Black Sabbath can be also heard on the album. Though the album is short, it’s an abrasive and pummeling listen that’s full of personality. The manic screams from the drummer and the almost comical voice inflection of the guitarist make the album a fun listen — just like two great friends making music.

With recent opening gigs for Dead Kennedys’ Jello Biafra and The Presidents of the United States, the duo is making progress as local musicians, with this new record as a testament that the band is taking a step forward in the right direction.

Psych-pop veterans Of Montreal are back with its shimmering 13th full-length release, Aureate Gloom. Through the large and diverse discography, frontman Kevin Barnes has led this project in various directions from avant-pop, psych-folk, indie-pop and even disco and R&B. On the new album the group sticks to the usual offbeat and whimsical style of psych-pop, but doesn’t stray far enough from the path to make this album memorable.

Aureate Gloom offers influences of progressive rock and punk rock, but the sounds blend in the background, which deters the album from standing out from the rest of the band’s catalogue. Granted, some tracks — including single “Bassem Sabry” — are enjoyable and in true Of Montreal style. But sadly it seems that the Athens, Ga., band is not too interested in pushing the boundaries on the latest release. However, the record is a satisfying listen for any die-hard Of Montreal fan.

James Calvet is the music director for Radio 1190.