Saturday 20 September 2014
It's great to find out that a local band that you had thought had disappeared quietly into the night are not only still going strong, but have some new musical treats for us. That's the case with Derry's noisiest sons, the post-hardcore four-piece Droids. They made quite an impact back in 2012 with their self-titled E.P, but have been relatively quiet since then. However, they've resprung to life recently, with a string of local shows, and a brand new track, "Burn Down", which is a timely little reminder of just what they do best - heavy, melodic yet uncompromising rock music. It's nice to have you back, lads.
Friday 19 September 2014
Although there's still three months to go until the end of the year, it is looking very likely that our favourite new act of 2014 is going to be Canadian five-piece Alvvays. After becoming smitten with them after catching them by chance at The Great Escape, they solidified their place in our hearts with the release of their self-titled debut album, a fantastic, subversive album that reminded us that 'indie-pop' and 'twee' should not always be used synonymously.
The band have just released the music video for one of the songs on the album, and I cannot tell you how overjoyed I am at it. "Next of Kin" was the overwhelming highlight of the album, a fantastic song, which is likely to be the jauntiest tune about a riverside drowning that you're likely to hear this year. The chorus is just a thing of wistful beauty, and the stop-motion video they've made to accompany the song fits it very well. I'm absolutely delighted that the song's made the upgrade to single status (or 'focus track', or 'stream grabber', or whatever they're calling it these days). It's a fantastic song, and (SPOILER) is a top contender to be the blog's favourite song of 2014 when December rolls around.
"Next of Kin" is taken from Alvvays' self-titled debut album, which is available now. If you want more reasons to buy the album, check out my review of the album on Drowned In Sound and wonder why this album hasn't yet entered your life.
Wednesday 17 September 2014
For the second day in a row, we're bringing our good readers some tasty Irish electronic music. Although unlike yesterday's tasty treat, this one's a little bit on the bonkers side.
Line-In is the project of Stephen Roddy, a Dublin based producer and sound engineer. He has just released the first instalment of a four part record based around Terminus Abruptus*, a fictitious* universal overlord. The first track from the release is a track called "The Life and Death of Terminus Abruptus", which gives you a bit of a taste of what to expect. It's a quirky, odd, heavy electronic instrumental which sounds like it's pitched somewhere in between Adebisi Shank and something you might find on the soundtrack of Streets of Rage. It's a bit of an acquired taste, but definitely worth your time if you're willing to give it a chance.
The first release in the series, "Overlord Pt. 1 - The Glorious Rise of Terminus Abruptus", is out now.
*which we are assuming translates as "abrupt stop". It's been over ten years since we took a Latin class.
Tuesday 16 September 2014
Q. How does The Metaphorical Boat like its electronica served?
A. Warm. Warm and human.
And we have just been well and truly satiated, thanks to Wicklow based trio Tell No Foxx. They have already picked up lots of love after the release of their debut E.P over the summer, and to coincide with their upcoming performance Hard Working Class Heroes, they have just released a brand new single. "Fusillade"* is built upon a landscape of dark and moody electronica and beats, yet upon its foundations lies a depth of warmth thanks to its subtle guitar and thoroughly human vocals. Turn down Bastille's pop-meter three or four notches and you get a sense of what to expect with Tell No Foxx.
"Fusillade" is due to appear on the band's second E.P, which is due for release in January. They play The Button Factory in Dublin on Saturday 4th of October for this year‘s Hard Working Class Heroes Festival.
*Fusillade means a quick succession of shots fired - we love it when bands help us to learn new words.
Monday 15 September 2014
Here's some discordant indie for you, courtesy of Liverpool based band ETCHES. Having picked up some attention with their single "The Charm Offensive" earlier in the year, they are following it up with the tongue-twisteringly titled "Ice Cream Dream Machine" (try saying that 10 times in a row). It's an unsettling, yet rather interesting song indeed.
"Ice Cream Dream Machine" will be released on October 13th.
Sunday 14 September 2014
"Gentle Neglect" is available to purchase now.
Saturday 13 September 2014
Irish indie-rock trio The Beau Motives picked up a bit of interest earlier this following the release of their cover version of The Beloved's "Sweet Harmony". With a debut album already recorded and prepared to go, the group have just released their first official single, "Let It All Go". If you're a fan of Tori Amos, but wish she was a lot heavier and not as piano-y, then you may find something to like in this single.
"Let It All Go" will be released on October 13th.
Tuesday 9 September 2014
Well, it finally happened. After being one of Northern Ireland's shooting stars for the best part of two years, the release of "Blud" on the record label owned by Chvrches finally saw Derry lass SOAK reach a truly international audience, blowing up the blogosphere which notching up a cool 200k plays on Soundcloud. In a move that has came as a surprise to nobody, the success of that single has seen Bridie ink a deal with a large record label, in this case Rough Trade (the label who also guided another major local act, Stiff Little Fingers, to success a generation ago).
Her first single release on the label is the strangely written "B a noBody". Before you go into grammar fascist mode and point out that the title is not in correct English, I would like to kindly remind you that the English language does not have an official elite sanctioning body (unlike L'Académie française) that decides what words are, therefore as long as people are okay with how it's used, it's grand. That, and it would distract from what is a lovely song about being okay with not having a plan for life. SOAK is growing in confidence and songcraft with each song that she brings out.
The song's release seems like it's been timed for her to be included in every single tastemaker's tips for 2015 list, and rightly so. She is hitting all the right buttons, and the way things are going, she is no more that six months away from the top 40.
"B a noBody" will be released on November 3rd on 7" vinyl, and is available to download/stream as of now.
Monday 8 September 2014
To say it has been a rosy few months for Derry band The Wood Burning Savages would be something of an understatement. As if being declared one of the best live bands in the country by Tom Robinson wasn't enough, the band got the opportunity to play at this year's Glastonbury Festival through BBC Introducing, and by all accounts, they went down a storm.
Now back from a busy festival season, the band have just announced the release of a new single. If you're expecting the shiny disco-rock of their last single, "America", you're going to be disappointed.
Or you would, if you weren't busy being blown away by the sonic rock onslaught offered on "Boom". After spending half a minute getting up to speed, we are treated to a powerful rock anthem-in-waiting from the four-piece.
I'm ashamed to admit that I haven't had the pleasure of seeing The Wood Burning Savages live yet, but I'm very much looking forward to it, especially if they've got more juggernauts like "Boom" waiting in the wings.
"Boom" is taken from the E.P of the same name, which will be released on September 29th. The official launch gig will be on Friday October 10th in The Bar With No Name (formerly Auntie Annies), in Belfast. Support on the night will come from Freak's, Hot Cops & His New Atlas.
Saturday 6 September 2014
Battery Operated Orchestra are a Brighton based husband and wife duo, originally from Glasgow and Tasmania respectively. They've got a debut album out next week, and to give you a slice of what to expect, here's "Fluoro Sushi", a chirpy, analogue powered electro-pop tune that sounds like a fun, childlike version of Chvrches, full of fun and devoid of irony.
Their album, "Incomplete Until Broken", is released on September 10th.
Armagh based quintet Silences will be releasing their new E.P next month, the follow-up to their well received "Nevernames" from earlier this year. The title track from the E.P, "Sister Snow", has been released to the wide world, accompanied by a music video directed by Alec Moore, which features a young girl interacting with a fantasy world before being pulled back into reality, which offers a great visual accompaniment to the band's folksy style.
Thursday 4 September 2014
Philadelphia based band Cheerleader burst into our lives earlier this with their joyous indie-pop single "Perfect Vision", a song which helped the band pick up quite a bit of blog loving, and went down a treat at The Great Escape.
They have now released their brand new single "On Your Side", which although isn't as instant as "Perfect Vision", is still a cracking single. Once the first chorus hits, you'll be hooked, it's a song that sounds like it could be the spiritual successor to what The Lightning Seeds were doing in the 90s, something that we very much approve of around these parts. Cheerleader are building up a small arsenal of cracking guitar-pop tunes, it can only be a matter of time before the wider world steps up and notices.
Monday 1 September 2014
Two exciting pieces of news came out today regarding London indie-pop band Tigercats. Firstly, the band announced that they had signed to the wonderful Fortuna Pop, who have put of releases by bands like Let's Wrestle & September Girls among others. Secondly, the band have announced that a 2nd studio album, a follow-up to 2012's under-appreciated "Isle Of Dogs", is on its way, and have previewed its with the first track to be taken from the album, "Junior Champion".
A self professed anthem for chess fans, "Junior Champion" sees the band in a more wistful mood than before, with the band extending their indie-pop pallet with the addition of some heavenly flute, and a brass-filled middle 8 section. They might have also delivered one of the oddest couplets in a song this year - "she's the greatest kisser, and God knows I'm no Bobby Fischer". It's a cracking new song from a group who I'd feared had disappeared for good, and if they can deliver an album of songs as good as this one, they'll be sticking around for some time yet.
The sophomore album from Tigercats, "Mysteries", will be released in January 2015.