RADAR: AirLands

AirLands is the new project from Kevin Calaba, Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter and, for seven years, frontman for the fine art/pop collective he co-founded: Stars of Track and Field. The songs on Calaba's as-yet-unreleased debut album Flares find that sweet spot between widescreen melodic British rock -- we're hearing elements of "Solsbury Hill"-styled Peter Gabriel, Coldplay and Elbow -- and modern American indie pop à la Duncan Sheik.

Working with producers Tony Lash (The Dandy Warhols) and Aaron Nevezie (The Black Keys, The City and Horses), Calaba makes his songs epic with a small "e," intricately arranged with big choruses and chiming guitar lines awash in lush synth strings and booming crescendos. Calaba and his Airland band -- including wife Marlena, Nadeem Salaam, Pablo Eluchans and Jeremy Gillespie -- play their first official gig at Rockwood Music Hall on NY's Lower East Side on December 12. Stream the album closing "Wolves" and watch a video for new demo track "SpaceShips" at the Currents page.

"In Conflict" is the title track of the latest album from Owen Pallett, songwriter and composer (utilizing the happily defunct moniker Final Fantasy) and touring instrumentalist with Arcade Fire. The song, featuring Brian Eno on guitar, is also the haunting soundtrack to a rather remarkable video filmed by Jason Last and Jaime Rubiano on Long Island.

"The song is about men; the ghost of my father whispering to me about human desire," Pallett tells Nowness, "and it’s about this moment in your life when you start to recognize that your body is a series of apparatus and you start to covet the bodies of people younger than you." The music takes nearly two minutes to finally kick, so stay with it...

"Desire" is the jangling, brand spanking new track from Champs, the Isle of Wight brotherly duo of David and Michael Champion. It's also our first preview of the sibs' forthcoming second album and follow up to their debut Down Like Gold, an album we described as "nothing too raggedy, nothing too buttoned up -- just a quaint U.K folk feel and loose indie attitude tucked firmly inside Brit Invasion nostalgia."  Dimitri Tikovoi (Goldfrapp, Charlie XCX, Mikky Ekko) produced.

Natalie Prass

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