Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Sam Owens is known for fronting Brooklyn trio Celestial Shore, but he does the solo thing as Sam Evian (above, the video for “Sleep Easy”). And to that end, his debut long-player, Premium (stream it below), inspired by the likes of Shuggie Otis, Jackson Browne and Cass McCombs, came out last summer. AllMusic said it’s a “seductive listen that’s equally suited for early morning hangovers and late, late nights.” While No Depression added: “Premium is a spaced-out gem of trippy, layered instrumental arrangements and Evian’s smooth, creamy harmonies. And it is the perfect soundtrack for you last days of summer, with its beachy, bright coolness.”
Brooklyn dream-pop act Uni Ika Ai—Maia Friedman (vocals, synths and guitar), Peter Lalish (guitar and synths), Tom Deis (keys, bass and vocals) and Dan Drohan (drums and percussion)—also put out a first LP, Keeping a Golden Bullseye in the Corner of My Mind (stream it above), last year. In dubbing it a “stunning debut album,” the Wild Honey Pie went on to say, “The songs are dreamy without becoming cloudy—they exist within a comfortable haze and tempo, but don’t succumb to feeling lethargic or apathetic. The vocals and instrumentals push forward with ease, creating tracks that feel steady but triumphant, relaxed but purposeful.” Uni Ika Ai (below, doing “Mexico” for Sofar Sounds) have teamed up with Sam Evian for a few shows this week, and you can catch them both on Saturday night at Rough Trade NYC. A third Brooklyn act, Wilder Maker, opens.