I started out this post with the idea of highlighting the debut album by The Art Museums, and then I realized I could combine it with the debut long player by Moon Duo, as they have several things in common: they both came out last month on Woodsist Records, both bands are from San Francisco, both have 2 members, one of whom is also in a band that I already like, and, most importantly, both albums are pretty terrific! Despite all these commonalities, the music contained within is quite different.
The Art Museums' "Rough Frame" is catchy, lo-fi pop music, particularly of the British C86 tradition. Comparisons to The Television Personalities and The Tall Dwarfs would be apt. Band member Glenn Donaldson is also in the slightly more psyche-tinged Skygreen Leopards.
Moon Duo contains Wooden Shjips guitarist Ripley Johnson, and they definitely delve in the same psyche/drone/freakout realm as the Shjips, except they adhere to a more minimal groove, perhaps. "Escape" is their debut album, after last year's single and EP (although all 3 releases last between 20 and 30 minutes). I quite enjoy it.