Earlimart, ‘Hymn & Her’ (Majordomo)
In a time when subgenres can seem as numerous as artists, it’s a relief to find straightforwardly sincere, modern-rock songwriting done well. Earlimart’s sixth full-length doesn’t break new ground — those Elliott Smith comparisons will keep on coming — or approach the sublime sexiness of fellow Los Angelenos Rilo Kiley. But it’s an undeniably solid set of droney hooks, with Ariana Murray’s merrily fatalistic laments (“Before It Gets Better”) neatly balancing out Aaron Espinoza’s catchier bits (chugging opener “Song For”). The only miscalculation? Burying the liveliest numbers (“Cigarettes and Kerosene,” “Teeth,” “Time for Yourself”) seven tracks in.