Tuesday 28 July 2015
Another year, and another broken promise to myself that I will attend that years' Indietracks Festival, a festival set around a train station and filled to the brim with all things indie-pop. One imagines I shall get around to it one day, once the stars align and I finally work out where the heck Derbyshire actually is (I'd always thought it was a mythical place, like Atlantis, or Narnia), but for this year anyway, I remain trackless.
From the sounds of it, those who did go seemed to really enjoy themselves, with one band who played there who were repeatedly brought to our attention on the social medias being London band Flemmings. Unfortunately, it was not necessarily for positive reasons, given that during the festival the band had their tour van damaged by hoodlums. Still, it seems their set went down well on the day, so all's well and all all that.
They've also just released a new E.P, of which the lead track "Get Away From Me Right Now", is a real doozy of a tune. It combines tried and tested chord progressions with lo-fi, Husker Du esque guitars to give us something rather enjoyable indeed.
Their E.P "Shake Well Before Use" is available to buy now as a limited edition cassette.
Saturday 25 July 2015
Time for our annual self-congratulatory post, as yesterday, The Metaphorical Boat marked it's fourth year of existence. Go us!
Last year when we were marking this particular milestone, I mentioned that there was uncertainty as to whether the blog would remain afloat by the time we reached the same stage this year. As you can see, we did indeed make it in the end, although we've slowed things down to only a handful of posts each month, which are usually a lot more brief than what we would have tended to post.
There's a few things that we would have liked to cover, but never got around to. For example, the debut album from Public Service Broadcasting was my favourite album of 2013, yet we hadn't got around to reviewing their like reviewing their sophomore album. So I might as well do that now, albeit a bit more briefly than I would have intended:
"Although "The Race For Space" doesn't have the same strength of material as "Inform - Educate - Entertain", as a unified body of work, based around the theme of space exploration, it is much more coherent. The addition of live vocals on the title track and "Valentina" add an ethereal air to the proceedings, and the broadening of PSB's sound palette is very refreshing."
And that's another load off our mind.
So here's to another year at The Metaphorical Boat. Many thanks to anyone who's ever read or listened to anything that we've posted here, and thanks to everyone who makes fantastic music, without whom this blog would never have made it past its first day. We hope to be around writing about some fantastic music for the foreseeable future, but as real life begins to take us further away from music, you can never be too sure.
And to finish off this post is a new-ish song from one of the bands that we've been writing about on this blog from the very beginning, Wonder Villains. They recently covered Stiff Little Fingers' punk classic "Alternative Ulster" for the film Shooting For Socrates, adding a more electronic-pop flavour to the original.
Monday 20 July 2015
Before music became my overwhelming passion, the one thing I loved more than anything else was football. Not playing the game, mind (although I did take part in Roccer last year with the guys from Chordblossom), but trying to learn everything about the game. Up until my early teens, I collected every single Merlin sticker book, was heavily addicted to Championship Manager 2 (pro-tip - Jason Trinder becomes a world class goalkeeper, and you can pick him up for free!), watched Match of The Day with religious fervour, and at one point could name every single manager for every single team in the top 4 divisions of the English League (long live Dario Gradi).
It's hard to pinpoint the exact moment when I fell out of love with football, but I believe that it was the moment when Muzzy Izzet left Leicester City to join Birmingham in June 2004. After this, music became the love of my life, spurred on by getting my first MP3 player and the near impeccable selection of groups who made up that year's BBC Sound of... poll, whose music brought me down the musical rabbit hole that consumes me to this day.
I still play Football Manager every now and again, and I usually follow the World Cup/Euro Championships whenever it is on, but if you were to ask me to name 10 players who currently play in the top flight, I would really struggle to get there. It's fair to say that whilst it was once the love of my life, now I don't care about the Premier League.
And that long, winding preamble brings me directly on to the business of the day, which is the brand new single by Derry band The Wood Burning Savages. They last entered our consciousness back in September last year with their explosive single "Boom", and have just released their latest single, "Premier League", a song which has been a live favourite from the band for some time now. Just like myself, it seems as if the band are not really fans of the Premier League, as they spit out a varied shopping list of things that they don't care about, which includes, but is not limited to, Mark Anthony, the Venus de Milo, the FTSE 100, and the aforementioned top flight of football, over a heavy, Manic Street Preachers-esque rock tune.
The Wood Burning Savages have done a great job of transfering the live energy of "Premier League" into this recording, and it stands head and shoulders as the best song that they've recorded to date. I can't see it being used to soundtrack the Goal of the Month on Match of The Day though, for obvious reasons. Long live "The Life Of Riley".
"Premier League" is out now.
Tuesday 14 July 2015
Folk rock quintet The Emerald Armada have spent the past few years cementing their reputation as Northern Ireland's best live bands, with their raucious gigs becoming the stuff of legends. One problem with bands with such a great live reputation is how to transfer that live sound over to record, with previous releases doing so with somewhat mixed results.
Which is why their latest single, "This House", is quite interesting. Produced by Rocky O'Reilly (previous releases were produced by the band), the song sounds more studio-orientated than previous recordings, and sees a slight adjustment to their style. Whilst the verses still retain the Irish folk-rock sound that they're known for, the choruses take on powerful, alt-rock vibes, reminiscent of Foals or The 1975, and although at first the difference between the two styles may seen a bit jarring, it works surprisingly well after a few listens.
"This House" is perhaps the most realised recording that The Emerald Armada have made to date. I'm not too sure how well it's going to fit into their live set, but if there's one band that can make it sound fantastic on stage, it's them.
"This House" is out now.
Monday 13 July 2015
Having been on our radar for the last few years, we are only a few months away from the release of the debut album from Eoin O'Callaghan's project Best Boy Grip. The last song by him that caught our attention, "Sharks", saw BBG ditch the piano for guitars, so it's nice to see him back in more familiar territory on new single, "Can't Buy Love, Son", with gorgeous piano melodies and heartfelt lyrics tinged with bitterness.
There's also a music video released to promote the single, which has been directed by O'Callaghan, which depicts the moments before a nuclear apocalypse, which looks quite impressive for its budget.
"Can't Buy Love, Son", will feature on the as-yet untitled fan funded debut album by Best Boy Grip, which is due for release on September 7th.
Wednesday 8 July 2015
It's been a while since we heard some new music from our favourite Antipodean indie-poppers Major Leagues. The Brisbane four-piece are lining up to release their 2nd E.P, the follow-up to "Weird Season", which spawned the mighty "Endless Drain". The first song to be taken from the release "Someone Sometime" is more moderately paced than that track, but still contains the scuzzy guitars and bittered honey vocals that won us over to the band in the first place.
"Someone Sometime" will be released on 10th July.