With every Tuesday, a crammed armful of new releases hits the local record boutiques. Today three new albums from Portland artists hit the shelves, and they're each worth mentioning. Now, these records have nothing to do with each other, but taken together, they compose the elusive, contradictory nature of life itself, encompassing unknowable mystic beauty, the horrifying ugliness of mortality, and the natural, hopeful momentum that's imbued into everyday existence. They're like a Cabbage Patch Kid covered in Garbage Pail stickers.
• Inventions is the collaboration between Explosions in the Sky and Eluvium's Matthew Cooper (Cooper's from here). Their self-titled album is lovely, soaring crest of cumulus sound, as insistent and soothing as shallow waves beating on a shore. Inventions is out today on Temporary Residence, and will fill you with careful assurance.
• Nux Vomica, on the other hand, want your heart, stomach, and other vitals to sink into an eternal pit of dread. Their self-titled album—the Portland-via-Baltimore crust metal band's third—is three long tracks of heavy, and it's their first for metal stalwart Relapse Records. Abandon all hope.
• Also out today is RAC's Strangers, the first original album from the Portland-based remixer, culled from his two recent EPs. It includes contributions from Yacht, Tokyo Police Club, and that Golden Globe-winning Edward Sharpe fellow. The album is streaming in full over on the Hype Machine, and you should go there right now to at least hear the terrific Tegan and Sara collab, "Hard to Hold," and just feel generally good about the world. RAC performs at the Wonder Ballroom this Sunday, April 6.
If you put all three of these on shuffle play, I don't know what might happen to you.