Friday, 28 June 2013
British psych pop band Temples have the whole T. Rex look down down pat -singer James Bagshaw even looks exactly like Marc Bolan. A favourite of Noel Gallagher, Temples music is being compared not so much to T. Rex, but more toward Australian psych band Tame Impala. Listen to the swooning, mellotron infused "Colours to Life" below.
Thursday, 27 June 2013
First new music in four years from everybody's favourite Scottish indie dance rock band Franz Ferdinand. They decided to double our pleasure with the release of a double A side single featuring the songs "Right Action" and "Love Illumination." The band doesn't sound too band on these tracks. Listen below.
The 7" single is out now and both tracks will be featured on the album Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action, out August 27th via Domino.
Erin Fein and her Psychic Twin project return with the first new music since the release of her excellent 7"single "Strangers" back in March. "Unlock Yr Heart" is another addictive track that features Fein's fluttering sweet vocals, and with it's brimming bass the song is being compared to the work of Grimes. Listen to the track below:
Wednesday, 26 June 2013
Just a couple of weeks ago Bloc Party announced they were going on a second hiatus after they wrap up their current tour. If you assumed then that we would not here any new material from the band for quite some time - or maybe even never again -you assumed wrong because they are going to release a new five song EP, The Nextwave Sessions, in August.
"Ratchet" is the first single off the EP and it sounds more like their earlier stuff and less like the grungy sound of their last LP Four. Watch the video for the song below:
The Nextwave Sessions will be out August 13th via Frenchkiss Records.
Only a few month's after breaking up the love 'em or hate 'em British band WU LYF, lead singer Ellery James Roberts has returned with brand new music. The way that he broke up his former band was confusing to his band mates and it seemed liked he totally had had it with music and even the world at large. But here he is pulling a Christopher Owens and releasing the brilliant new song "Kerou's Lament."
The song features Roberts' distinctive raspy Tom Waits like voice and is bolstered by an anthemic chorus that breaks into "To the powers of old, to the powers that be: You fucked up this world, but you won't fuck with me."- so maybe he still is pissed off at the world. The track even features a rap sample of the Clams Casino instrumental "I'm God"that adds to the expansiveness of the song. Listen below:
Monday, 24 June 2013
Not posting this so much for the song-"Despair" is a great track-but for the music video. This might be the best video I have seen all year.
Watch as the Yeah Yeah Yeahs travel to the top of the Empire State Empire where Karen O’s despair quickly turns to happiness as the sun comes up over New York City. Simple but brilliant.
Taken from the album Mosquito, out now.
Another euphoric synth pop track from Swedish electro band Postiljonen. Using the M83 template this band are making some of the best summer music of the year. "On The Run" is more downtempo than "Supreme"-the track we wrote about a few weeks ago- but that doesn't mean it is less blissful.
The track is taken from the album Skyer, out July 5th via Best Fit Recordings/Hybris.
Friday, 21 June 2013
Today is the first day of summer and there is no better music to play today than chillwave. And who better to to provide that music than Washed Out. After all, he produced the perfect summer song in 2011 with “Feel It All Around”- anybody who has ever watched Portlandia is familiar with this song.
I think I like Ernest Greene better than the other artists who combined electronic music with psychedelia to make this new chill music back in 2009 (although Neon Indian comes close).
“It All Feels Right” is Washed Out’s latest single and is one of the tracks on the new LP Paracosm which will be out sometime in August via Sub Pop.
Thursday, 20 June 2013
Wednesday, 19 June 2013
A while back the Arctic Monkeys came to town to play a free gig at a radio station. I checked my twitter feed that day and somebody tweeted "Arctic Monkeys, Are they still a thing?" Well the answer is yes...they are still a "thing" and they are still really, really good.
Even know the band have not announced a new album, they dropped a new single plus accompanying video today. "Do I Wanna Know?" doesn't stray too far from the sound of their last LP Suck It and See. The song has that desert stoner rock meets Northern England Brit Pop vibe going for it. Listen below:
I didn't think much of Superhumanoids when I saw them live, opening for Cults a couple of years ago. Can't remember why, but I think they were a bit boring in concert. For some reason I do not remember a girl (Sarah Chernoff) doing any vocals....so maybe it was just me that was boring.
Superhumanoid's new single "Bad Weather" has female vocals and they are extraordinarily beautiful. The band have switched up their sound a bit, moving from pure dream pop to more of an R&B synth pop sound. I think I am going to have to go back and listen to their earlier recordings again after hearing this track. Listen to the breezy track below:
The single is taken from Superhumanoids new album, Exhibitionists, out August 6th via Innovative Leisure.
Tuesday, 18 June 2013
One of my favourite albums released this year was the Foxygen LP We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic. Now just a few months after that LP came out Foxygen member Jonathan Rado is gearing up for a solo album.
The first single is titled “Faces” and features guest guitarist Tim Presley of garage rock band White Fences.
Rado will release his debut LP, Law & Order, September 3rd via Woodsist.
Oakland band Trails and Ways have been gaining a lot of buzz on blogs over the last year with the release of a few really good songs, a couple of covers and some remixes. Today came their first proper release with their brand new EP.
These guys offer up dream pop with a twist. They are influenced by sounds from all over the world and on their new EP Trilingual the band add Brazilian flavour to their particular brand of synth pop. The beautiful "Tereza" is the third single from the EP. Download below:
Trails and Ways play The Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto tonight. If you are in the area check it out.....it's free!
Monday, 17 June 2013
One final preview before Austra release their brand new LP Olympia tomorrow. Check out the third single "Hurt Me Now" or stream the whole album over at Exclaim.
Olympia is out now in Europe or it will be out in a few hours in North America via Paper Bag/Domino.
Flaamingos are LA duo Jerry Narrows and Daniel Koontz, a couple veteran musicians who in the past have worked with a number of projects including performing in shoegaze bands. The two decided to combine their expertise and as a result they have come out with the slow burning post punk single "All I Wanna Do Is Live."
The duo also have a new self titled album coming out on August 27th via felte.
Sunday, 16 June 2013
So, Kim Deal unexpectedly quit the Pixies last week. Not much information about this other then a message on the band's Facebook page. She will be missed in their live shows (not that they were planning on touring) , especially her haunting voice whenever they play "Where Is My Mind?" Brilliant song.
Friday, 14 June 2013
Paula is the synth pop project of Montreal artist David Carriere, who also is a member of indie pop band TOPS. I saw Paula play last night in Toronto as part of the Arbutus Showcase at the NXNE festival and Carriere and his band impressed me very much. Although, his live show comes across as more rock than the synth pop sound of the song "Totally Nice". The guy plays a mean guitar.
The song is taken from his album Relaxed Fit which is out now digitally and will be reissued on vinyl July 16th via Drag City imprint Ethereal Sequence.
Wednesday, 12 June 2013
Really liking Mood Rings, a four piece dream pop from Atlanta who we featured last month with their beautiful song "Hollow Dye (Defected Crystal)". The band have come out with a second single in the form of "The Line", another airy, bubbly track with dreamy vocals and cascading synths. Listen below:
Mood Rings will release their debut LP, VPI Harmony, June 25th via Mexican Summer.
Tuesday, 11 June 2013
Earlier this year London psych rock band S.C.U.M. returned from a short hiatus, and instead of releasing new music or going on tour, they announced they were breaking up. It did not take long for the fragments of the band to join together and form a new group. Three of the original members, including singer Melissa Rigby, decided to form Astral Pattern, a band who specialize in quiet dream pop.
On their first single, "Sitting in the Sun" the band tone down the guitars and rely on soft voice of Rigby which is underscored by bubbly keyboards. Listen below:
Monday, 10 June 2013
Original Riot Grrrls Kathleen Hanna and Kathi Wilcox of the band Bikini Kill have gotten back together under the guise of the new group The Julie Ruin.
Their new single, the hard charging punk song "Oh Come On" is taken from the band's forthcoming new LP titled Run Fast. The album will be out September 3rd via TJR Records.
English shoegaze band Toy have hooked up with indie pop chanteuse Natasha Khan, aka Bat For Lashes, to re-work an Iranian wedding song into a psych rock masterpiece. "The Bride"is a retitled cover of the song "Aroos Khanom", which was originally recorded by Iranian artist "Amir Rassaei"
The track has been translated to English using the beautiful vocals of Khan and will appear in limited edition 7" on July 1st. The song was produced by Dan Carey (Franz Ferdinand) who has also put together a compilation album of Iranian psych music titled Zendooni: Funk, Psychedelia and Pop from the Iranian Pre-Revolution Generation. It will be released on the same day as the single on his new label Speedy Wunderground. Listen to the track below:
Sunday, 9 June 2013
The death last week of Andreas Thein-an original member of German synth pop band Propaganda-had me reminiscing about one of my favourite 80's groups. I remember late nights listening to CBC Radio programme Brave New Waves and hearing Propaganda played regularly.
The two songs they played the most were "P-Machinery" and "Duel," both big hit singles in1985 and both featured on the band's excellent A Secret Wish LP. "Duel" was the bigger hit in England where it peaked at number 21. The dark song has some of the best lyrics written in that era for that music genre: "The first cut won't hurt at all / The second only makes you wonder / The third will have you on your knees / You start bleeding / I start screaming". Listen to the extended mix to the song below:
Propaganda started in Dusseldorf Germany (also home to Kraftwerk) and were originally an industrial band who recorded one single "Disziplin" that was a tribute to Throbbing Gristle's "Discipline". The power of that song led them to relocate to England and sign to Trevor Horn's infamous ZZT label-which was also home to Frankie Goes to Hollywood and The Art of Noise.
The band didn't last long in it's original form, breaking up in 1987 after singer Claudia Brücken left to pursue a solo career (she later formed the band Act with Thomas Leer). The band regrouped with new members and released one final album in 1990 titled 1234.
There have been a couple of reunions where most of the original members got back together, including in 2005 performing at a tribute concert to Trevor Horn and his record label ZZT and in 2007 they appeared on a German TV show.
In 2010 they reissued A Secret Wish on a two disc CD. You can find it on Amazon or check your local record store.
Friday, 7 June 2013
It is not surprising that who ever is putting together this compilation for the Scion car company, (Admittedly, I have never heard of this business other than the fact they give away free music) they would include a song from Italo disco stars Chromatics. After all their song "Tick Of The Clock" was featured prominently on the movie Drive.
"Red Car" is a left over track from the awesome Kill For Love LP and was also featured on the band's From the Sun mixtape. The track is less Italo and more haunting than your average Chromatics song. Click the link to download below:
Chromatics- Red Car
Thursday, 6 June 2013
Wasn't sure I was going to be able to listen to this because the track premiered a couple of days ago on the subscription service Spotify. Spotify is not available in Canada, and even it was, I subscribe to it's competitor Rdio. Luckily, "I Waiting Here" found it's way on to Soundcloud, totally free to listen and to share.
The boffo movie director David Lynch has recorded an album titled, The Big Dream, consisting of 12 tracks in which he describes as "Modern Blues". "I'm Waiting Here" is not one of those tracks, but will be available as a bonus 7" with the vinyl issue of the album.
Swedish chanteuse Lykke Li is one of my favourite singer-songwriters and she really shines on this tune. This is definitely going to me one of my favourite songs of the year. Listen below:
The Big Dream will be out July 16th on Sacred Bones.
Lightning Dust is a side project of Vancouver Psychedelic band Black Mountain consisting of members Amber Webber and Josh Wells. Unlike the other more famous side project of Black Mountain-the Stephen McBean led Pink Mountaintops-Lightning Dust go in a completely different direction with their sound. Their beautiful synth pop arrangements are in sharp contrast to the other band's maximum riffage. Listen to their 80's inspired first two singles below:
Lightning Dust release their new album Fantasy on June 25th via Jagjaguwar.
Lightning Dust- Diamond
Lightning Dust- Loaded Gun
Wednesday, 5 June 2013
A blast of great 90's lo-fi noise rock from Manchester band Ghost Outfit. The shoegaze noise of "Killuhs" is taken from the band's debut album, I Want You To Destroy Me, out June 24th via SWAYS.
Tuesday, 4 June 2013
Welcome back Mr. Beck Hansen.
After a few restless years Beck has finally released a new original song, his first since the 2008 LP Modern Guilt. True, the California singer-songwriter/rapper has been busy doing collaborations and his Song Book series over the last while, but he hasn't put out a new original song until today.
Not totally a surprise because a couple of months ago Beck stated that he would be releasing an acoustic album some time this year. However, "Defriended" is definitely not acoustic and plays out more like something Animal Collective would produce. Listen below:
Another great song from up and coming London band Splashh. Really looking forward to listening to their new LP, Comfort, which was released today. "Today (Fade Away)" is the b-side to "All I Wanna Do" and is also featured on the new album.
You can pick up the album now via Kanine.
Monday, 3 June 2013
"Gravity" is the third track to be streamed off of Florida band Surfer Blood's new LP Pythons. If you want to hear the album before next week's release, it is streaming at NPR's website.
Pythons is out June 11th via Warner Bros.
It's good to see that Toronto's underground rock scene is getting a little bit of attention outside of the city. It may have started last year when Metz signed to Sub Pop and released one of the best indie rock albums of 2012. The buzzometer on this city's music scene seems to be heightening with bands like Odonis Odonis, Hooded Fang, Little Girls side project Prince Innocence and Army Girls side project Diana garnering plenty of hype.
Not to be outdone, Toronto post punk rockers Ell v Gore are poised to release their long awaited new EP, Sex Static, tomorrow and included on the release is the distorted gothic track "Lobotomy." These guys sound like they are inspired by everybody from the Bad Seeds to the Cramps with a little bit of Joy Division mixed in for good measure. Listen to the song below:
Sex Static will be out June 4th via Ben Cook's (Fucked Up, Yacht Club) new label Bad Actors Inc.
Sunday, 2 June 2013
Congratulations to our friends in the dream pop band Ummagma. The band competed against 21 countries in the Alternative Eurovision competition and claimed the prize for Ukraine with their track 1+1=3. The event is held annually on Amazing Radio and is hosted by Dani Charlton. The duo is also marking the second consecutive month with two songs in the Scottish New Music Chart ('Human Factor' at #16 and 'Rotation' at #26, sliding from #10 in April’s chart). Plus the busy band have just released Back To You and River Town as a Split EP with Finnish post-rock fusion band Virta on Italy's Som Non-Label.
Take a listen below to winning entry below:
Back in 2009, Toronto indie collective Broken Social Scene were scheduled to play a concert on Olympic Island in the city's harbour, but because of a municipal strike the show was cancelled. Turned out this was a good thing because the band decided to reschedule the gig at Toronto's Harbourfront Centre on the same night and they made the decision to do the show for free. The evening included all of the band's hits (plus many songs from their yet to be released LP Forgiveness Rock Record) with special guests and part time members Feist, Metric, Stars and Jason Collett
When Broken Social Scene ended their last tour in 2011, the band announced they were going on indefinite hiatus and they even tweeted at a concert in Brazil that that would be their last live performance. But I guess things change because the record label that BSS singer Kevin Drew is co-owner, Arts & Crafts, is having their 10 year anniversary this year and to celebrate will be holding a concert in downtown Toronto that will include his band. BSS will be playing their classic album You Forgot It In People in full- front to back.
This had me reminiscing about that free concert in 2009- one of the highlights was when the band played YFIIP track "Anthems For A Seventeen-Year Old Girl". The amazing performance included guests Feist, Amy Millan of Stars and Emily Haines of Metric who all took turns on the microphone singing the twee indie pop song.Watch the clip from the performance below.
You know that BSS will be pulling out all of the stops this weekend and if it is half as good as they were in 2009 than people who are attending will be in for something special.
The Field Trip concert goes down Saturday June 8th at Fort York Toronto and will also include sets by The Darcys, Ra Ra Riot, Bloc Party, Gold & Youth, Stars, Feist and more.