Tuesday 26 February 2013

Northern Ireland Tunes - Round-up #11

So another month passes us by, with more new tunes that you can shake a metaphorical stick at. Here's a few tunes, mainly of the heavier persuasion, from NI that have floated this month:

Girls Names - Hypnotic Regression

I'd like you to try something out for me. Have a look at The Hype Machine's list of songs which have been tagged with 'Belfast' (which you can do here), and tell me by looking at the list who the biggest band in Belfast is.

It's okay, I can wait while you check.

Your're back? Okay.

As I'm sure you saw, the band who cropped up the most on that list are the post-punk inspired Girls Names, a band that the worldwide blogosphere can't help but fawn over. Yet within Belfast, there doesn't seem to be the enormous swell of support for them that this amount of blog love would suggest (which isn't to say that they haven't got fans here, because they do). So what is it about that band in particular that seems to attract such love from the blogs that other Belfast bands can only dream of?

Is it that their 80s alternative-resurrecting sound resonates with the current blogged zeitgeist? Is it because they're signed to record labels who understand the role that music blogs can have in reaching a global audience? Maybe the group are just simply better than every other artist from the city? Or even none of the above?

Nonetheless, the band's success is rather welcome, and hopefully their rather nice second album, "The New Life", will help to win them over new fans, both locally and across the world. Many local bands could learn a thing or two by following their example.

Taken from that album is the rather marvelous "Hypnotic Regression", a song that channels everything that was good about The Cure's "17 Seconds" album:

The Wood Burning Savages - Here's To You

Time for another visit to the UK's City of Culture with Derry four-piece The Wood Burning Savages. Although they might be better known for their upbeat rock, their latest single, "Here's To You", sees them treading more insular territory. It sounds like it could fit rather nicely onto 90s also-rans Geneva's "Further" album, which is mighty praise indeed.

Kasper Rosa - Khora

Progressive post-rock is the order of the day for Kasper Rosa, a band who clearly feel that a three minute song is for wimps. "Khora" is the first half of the band's single "Icebreaker", and is a well crafted six minute mini-adventure of rock, something that will appeal to fans of fellow post-rockers And So I Watch You From Afar. They'll be launching the single on 28th February in Queen's University Speakeasy, supported by  Before Machines & Pigsaspeople.

Abandcalledboy - Seize The Chair

And finishing off this month are post-hardcore trio Abandcalledboy (previously B.O.Y), who release their "Dead Academics" E.P this month. Taken from the set is "Seize The Chair", a song that seems to set the band up as N.I's answer to Biffy Clyro. Heavy guitars? Check. Strong local accent in the vocals? Check.  An understated pop aesthetic hidden beneath the scuzzy veneer? Present and correct. All in all, it's a confident effort from the group.

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