Billy Nelson, "Water Sports" LP
Billy Nelson, co-founder/co-writer of indie synth-folk outfit Whistle Peak, has ventured out solo to write, record and produce his "post-Genesis Phil Collins record."
Inspired by the reemergence of neon clothing and songs about butts, Billy has decided to stop pretending and embrace his inner Robert Palmer. With promiscuous tastes ranging from Frank Ocean, Liars, Kanye West, Run the Jewels, Disclosure and Blood Orange, Billy makes music that is strange, unpredictable and hauntingly fun synth-pop.
While dark and introspective, there is levity and humor underlying his explorations of existential crises that accompany love, sex, marriage, and fatherhood. "Water Sports" is available now digitally and a onetime pressing of 250 LPs on hot pink wax with a fold-out calendar and free, full-album download.
“‘We Could Be Friends’ is a simultaneously hypnotic and emotionally touching track. Beginning with vocals repeating ‘I can see us as friends’ over a melancholic and spacey synth pad and aquatic arp, feelings of unrequited love are strongly conveyed. The nonchalant lead vocals creep forward gently, leading to the creepy leading effect around 01:20 — which then transitions into a tribal-like procession reminiscent of Animal Collective. The playful synth solo around 02:15 is a nice touch, as are the muttered vocals in the background — conveying a futuristic sense of optimism, despite the murky unrequited underbelly. I’m digging the playful vocal approach in this track, as well as the hypnotic and atmospheric blend of psych-pop and electronica.” —Obscure Sound
“… I dare you not to nod your head. Turn on the neon lights and put your headband on motherfuckers, because you're in for a ride.” —Never Nervous
“Throughout the album, you can pick up melodies that not only can catch the attention of older generations, but even younger generations.” —Bandwidth Culture
"As a nice snow day surprise, Louisville’s Billy Nelson released his most recent single, following the release of “We Could Be Friends” last August. Much like the previous track, “Lord, You’ve Got the Nerve” is textured largely by atmospheric synths, pulsing drum beats, and Billy’s recognizable voice. And also similarly, the song feels somewhat frustrated. Where “We Could Be Friends” repeated “I could see us as friends,” here we’ve got lyrics like “you say you only want a friend, do I have to go through this again” – in fact, the former track sounds awfully good when played directly after this most recent one. The track’s art is vaguely reminiscent of the cover of Michael Jackson’s Thriller, mixed perhaps with the mood of Neon Indian’s most recent album, Vega Int’l Night School – the art suits the track very well. Things are hazy here, from the distantly roaring guitars, to the effected vocals, to the smoky synthesizers that swell loudly into the midpoint of the song. Though only two tracks have been released from it thus far, the upcoming Billy Nelson album (whatever it may be called) seems to be hinting strongly at its disposition – word is we can look forward to a full album from Billy later this year." —Iron Post
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