Stream: New albums from Nite Jewel, Opus Orange, Opium Moon, Eyedress and La Bonte

From left: Nite Jewel (Photo by Tammy Nguyen); Opium Moon; Opus Orange (Photo by Bernard Chadwick); Eyedress (Photo by Phil Knott)

Here with a release roundup, making sure these new releases from Nite Jewel, Opus Orange, Opium Moon, Eyedress and La Bonte are on your radar …


Singer-songwriter-producer Ramona Gonzalez’s fifth album as Nite Jewel throbs with palpable hurt, getting its mostly faint pulse from a Moog and a broken heart. Addressing the grief from the end of her 12-year marriage, “No Sun” mourns the absence of simple things, like not having a hand to hold and being left “with silence it hurts so much,” she sings in “Before I Go.” Confusion and loss turn cathartic in the soundscapes of “This Time,” which along with the 6 1/2-minute opener “Anymore” suggests it all might be a bad dream, or one hopes so.

OPUS ORANGE, “Object Lessons”

The work of Santa Monica songwriter, composer and multi-instrumentalist Paul Bessenbacher, Opus Orange’s “Object Lessons” sounds like a lost gem from the indie-rock explosion of the late ’90s/early ’00s. Bessenbacher, who has a host of credits composing for TV, film and advertising, cuts a wide conceptual swath while crafting music with noisy guitars, propulsive rhythms, gang vocals and synth accents. The precariousness of being is a recurring topic (good dissection here), and songs such as “The Burning Question” and “Breaking Mirrors” (“We’re breaking mirrors / We’re walking under ladders / We sure as hell don’t have it figured out”) make “Object Lessons” a most rewarding long-player.

OPIUM MOON, “Night + Day”

Winners of the 2019 Grammy for Best New Age album in February 2019, the quartet returns with double the pleasure on “Night + Day,” a double-LP of heady soundscapes with a split personality. Explains singer-violinist Lili Haydn: “We love the magic of the slow, hypnotic seductiveness of our first album, but we also love to shred and make people dance, so we put all the lovemaking music on the ‘Night’ album and all the groovy, danceable songs on ‘Day.’ And on two songs we interpreted the same theme in both ways, illuminating our belief that perspective changes everything.”

EYEDRESS, “Mulholland Drive”

Just a year after “Let’s Skip to the Wedding,” prolific masher of dream-pop/soul/rap/post-punk Idris Vicuña (aka Eyedress) returns with an ambitious sixth album, “Mulholland Drive.” Dām-Funk, King Krule, Dent May and Vex Ruffin are among the guests on the wide-ranging, upbeat collection that, while servicing short attention spans, overstays its welcome by a few tracks. It’s worth it to run across gems like “Something About You” and “Body Dysmorphia.”

LA BONTE, “Don’t Let This Define Me”

As we said while enjoying the “Francis Right” video, SoCal native Garrett La Bonte has made a collection of unfussy and at times endearingly shambolic indie-rock that allows his narratives, imbued with a palpable but not mawkish melancholy, shine. “Don’t Let This Define Me” is a slow (and mostly slowcore) record and one that rewards a focused, inquisitive listen.