Sunday, 17 August 2014

Northern Ireland Tunes - Round-Up #30

We're in to August now in Belfast, which means that the summer is well and truly here. Well, we say summer, what we really mean is that the the usual Found Fossil grey skies are more of an Almost Oyster instead, at least if the Dulux Colour Scheme is anything to go by.

But anyway, you haven't came here to hear about multiple shades of grey, you want music, and new Northern Irish music at that. So here's a few new songs from here that are sure to float your Metaphorical Boat this month:

Hit The B Button! - Martial

Belfast based trio Hit The B Button! seem to experiment with what alternative rock is expected to be on their interesting debut E.P "Apartments". The choice cut from the record is the opening track "Martial", which sees the band mix subtle elements of chiptune and other electronic interestingness into the sound. It reminds me a little bit of the band Gay Dad in places, which by the way is a good thing (despite that band being seen as a running joke for bands who were hyped to the high heavens but failed to deliver, I actually have a soft spot for them. After all, you'd have to be particularly begrudging not to admit admirable qualities in the songs "Joy!" and "From Earth With Love").

Note - "Martial" should not be confused with the song "Marshall" by Wonder Villains. It's pronounced the same, but spelt differently.

Mons Olympus - Critical Mass

Formed from the derelict remains of Chocolate Love Factory, prog-rock trio Mons Olympus have unleashed upon us their epic debut single. "Critical Mass" is an 8 minute pummelling behemoth of a song, full of twists, turns and paranoia, a bit like Muse at their most bombastic and apocalyptic, albeit much, much heavier.

Rebekah Wilson - One Day More

Anyone who is aware of the Northern Irish music scene will have came across Rebekah Wilson at some point - after all, she is probably the biggest supporter we have of local music. Whether it's being a part of the brilliant Volume Control initiative, banging on about the latest releases on her Twitter page or seemingly trying to cover every Northern Irish song ever on YouTube, her passion for the scene is something quite special.

But as well as being an uber music fan, she's also an artist in her own right, and has just released her first single, "One Day More". Quite impressively, despite being only 16 years old, not only has she played all the instruments on the recording herself, she also producing, mixed and mastered it as well. With such a prodigious talent, she is only going to get better and better over the next few years. And Northern Irish music will be privileged to have her with us.


Tatsuhiro - 時計の針が (Valentine)

I don't think we've ever had any drum and bass on The Metaphorical Boat to date, so there's no time like the present to remedy that. Belfast based producer Daniel Carville has just released an E.P under the moniker Tatsuhiro, which mixes regular drum and bass with influences mined from J-Pop. Taken from the E.P is the single "時計の針が (Valentine)" (which apparently translates as "The Clock's Hands"), which is quite an interesting sounding track indeed.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

The Persian Leaps - Pretty Boy

Even though we may soon be reaching the singularity as far as 80s/90s inspired indie-pop goes, it doesn't necessarily mean that there's nothing of merit left in the genre. After all, one of our favourite albums of the year so far has been the self-titled debut album from Alvvays, and there's still some great wee gems just waiting to be discovered.

Like the following one from Minneapolis band The Persian Leaps. Having won over the NME with their "Praise Elephants" E.P last year, the trio will be releasing their follow-up next month. The first track to be taken from it is "Pretty Boy", a nice little fuzz-guitar driven pop tune that ticks all the boxes for sumptuous indie-pop yummyness. And at a concise 2 minutes 17 seconds long, it doesn't outstay its welcome.

"Pretty Boy" is available to download from the band's Bandcamp page.The song is taken from the E.P "Drive Drive Delay", which will be released on September 12th.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Ringlefinch - Drink Alone

As far as band names go, I haven't come across one recently that is as fun to say as Ringlefinch. I'm weird like that (incidentally, the name comes from a Norwegian troll ). Thankfully, there's much more to this London septet than an orally pleasing name, as "Drink Alone" demonstrates.

The song is an upbeat, fun, yet lyrically cutting folk track, filled to the brim with banjo, fiddles and great vocal harmonies. They've also released a music video for the song, which is pretty well put together. It demonstrates just the reason why the band have gone down so well on the London folk scene - like Bellowhead before them, they're just one appearance on Later With... away from becoming nationwide favourites.

"Drink Alone" is taken from the E.P "Mass Trespass", which is out now.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

PØRTS - Race With The Tide E.P

After keeping us waiting for over a year and changing their name, Derry 4-piece PØRTS are gearing up to release their long awaiting debut album. To whet our appetites before then, the band have released "Race With The Tide", a three track E.P of songs that were recorded for the album, but ultimately didn't make the final cut.

And it's safe to say, that if these are the songs that DIDN'T make the album, the ones that did are going to be pure dynamite. The title track is a mid-tempo brass led track that has the feel of Neutral Milk Hotel to it. "Distances" is another slower song that pulls off that great trick of being both sensitive and heavy at the same time.

The highlight of the E.P however is "Second In Line". It's surprising that this song in particular didn't make the cut, as it's been the highlight of their live set over the past few years. With it's jaunty rhythm and ridiculously crowd-pleasing chorus, one might have thought it would be the song that the band would try to push as their 'breakthrough' single - one could imagine it slotting in very nicely into Radio 2's daytime playlist.

Oh well, now's probably not the time to worry about if's and but's, and just enjoy the "Race With The Tide" for what it is - a delicious prawn cocktail starter to get our pallets excited about the juicy sirloin steak that will be the debut album from PØRTS.

The "Race With The Tide" E.P can be downloaded now for a reasonable price.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Viola Dust - You're Mine

The debut single from Newry based 5 piece Viola Dust, "The Big Hop", seemingly came out of nowhere to blow us away, with its sleek electro-pop sound sounding absolutely incredible for a band's opening salvo. Unsurprisingly, it picked up a lot of love, gaining airplay on 6music and XFM, as well getting a lot of blog lovin' along the way. Surprisingly, even in the wake of all this attention, the band have been somewhat hesitant to give us more information about themselves online, bar the basics, although it is our understanding that some of the members were formerly involved in the band Elspeth (whom we featured on the blog a few years back). Perhaps they just prefer to let the music do the talking?

The band have now released their second song, "You're Mine", a song that proves that their last song was not a fluke. The song's a lot more R&B inflected than their debut, but there's also elements of acts such as Prince and Passion Pit chucked into the glorious mix, creating a sleek track of electro-pop goodness. If Viola Dust are happy enough to let their music do the talking, then you'd better believe that we're happy enough to listen.