Stef Chura, 'Messes'
The debut LP from Detroit dynamo Stef Chura wrings fresh sounds out of the classic combination of electric guitar and voice. On "Slow Motion," one of 2017's best opening tracks, she sulks and sparks over Cobain-esque chords; by "Speeding Ticket," 10 tracks later, she's exhausted but no less compelling. Both songs show how perceptive Chura is about disconnection and crushed dreams, with a minor in sly irony. (Check those titles: "Slow Motion" is a fast one, "Speeding Ticket" rolls slow.) Those who heard this album when it came out this past January on the local garage label Urinal Cake Records are ahead of the game for February 2018, when it's being reissued on the much bigger Saddle Creek. Simon Vozick-Levinson