• New Music February 2011

    Fev 27 2011, 7h47

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash March 2011

    Link to all reviews

    Random Recommended Albums

    PJ Harvey new album entitled “Let England Shake”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Harvey’s big humanist statement is scatter shot with non specific socio-political proclamations constructed of character narratives which focus on external rather than internal conflicts. These are tales of post imperialism, war, disgust, shame, and filth. Evocative invectives are delivered in layered vocals, mercurially mirroring the pastoral yet harsh central themes contained within.

    This is a record of ages, historical in both lyric and arrangement. Displaying the most vigorously strident songwriting of her career, its lush poetic folk is concurrently bold, barbed and muscular. Authoritatively potent, bitterly bleak and beautiful, this record is an unexpected but essential punch in the face...”
    FullReview here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Kate Bush, Patti Smith

    Banjo Or Freakout album entitled “Banjo Or Freakout”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “A dizzyingly ferocious support slot on the recent Gold Panda tour proved that London-based producer/remixer Alessio Natalizia’s one-time bedroom project is now fully-formed. After drip-feeding several teasing singles, this Nicolas Vernhes-produced debut long-player, featuring Bloc Party’s Matt Tong, is a thing of gorgeousness; tremolo guitars, unfolding drum patterns and dreamlike arrangements push the listener into a serotonergic headspin. Snippets of Mary Chain, Can and Caribou hint at Natalizia’s mindset - ‘Move Out’ is a foggy, distorted epic, while the nursery rhyme of ‘Idiot Rain’ unravels its treasures in languorous style. An effortless meshing of beauty and power..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Can, Deerhunter, Spaceman 3

    How to Dress Well new album entitled “Love Remains”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “How to Dress Well is the recording alias of Tom Krell, a philosophy student who splits his time between Brooklyn and Cologne, Germany. When he’s not writing about Kantian epistemology, he’s listening to RnB, the hi-tech variety ranging chronologically from the late-80s swingbeat era to today’s The-Dream and Drake/Kanye, loving that strand of solemn synthesizer soul that no one has quite got around to terming "keymo" yet, with an unironic vengeance..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Gang Gang Dance, oOoOO, Avey Tare

    Toro y Moi new album entitled “Underneath The Pine”
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “After the success of Toro Y Moi’s debut release, ‘Causers of This’, Chaz Bundick quickly became an unassuming chief purveyor of yet another bastard genre. Chillwave is not a label he particularly cares about but it’s one he’ll be hard pressed to shift because ‘Underneath the Pine’ seeps laconic relaxation.
    Textured, layered and wistfully soulful, ponderous, lingering piano chords are wrapped in giant groundswells that always seem to fall sunny side up. A shift away from the sampling of his debut, ‘Underneath The Pine’ keeps things sweet and traditional, leaving you lazily grinning from ear to ear..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Washed Out, Les Sins, Memoryhouse

    Gil Scott Heron & Jamie xx debut album entitled “We’re New Here"
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Those approaching this release as fans, exclusively, of either Scott-Heron or The xx might be at a loss, but this collection works on separate level. Whilst I'm New Here marked an introspective turn from Scott-Heron, this set offers a multi-layered retrospective of the music which bore and surrounds Jamie xx. It’s not merely a rehash of the original, but a cohesive, considered masterpiece in its own right...”
    FullReview here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. James Blake, The xx, Jacques Greene.
    [url=http:// www.myspace.com/revolutionwillnotbetelevised]http:// www.myspace.com/revolutionwillnotbetelevised

    Nicolas Jaar new album entitled “Space Is Only Noise”
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “James Blake aside, Nicolas Jaar is 2011’s poster-boy for all things new, exciting yet innovatively restrained in dance music. Despite coming from entirely different places, globally and musically, the young techno-kind’s approach to texture and palette draws many parallels with Blake’s soulful experimentalism.

    Snatches of piano, vocal and other live instrumentation echo around impressionistic house beats, threatening to but never quite forming into full-blown pop songs. Rather than ramping up the BPMs, Jaar is a master of subtlety, relying on good ideas and fantastic production to maximise his sound...”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Seth Troxler, The Art Department, Ricardo Villalobos.

    Robag Wruhme new album entitled “Wuppdeckmischmampflow”
    (Rated at 7/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Though the label was initially and famously born around a signature sound, Kompakt has slowly diversified over the past 10 years, more thanks to a creative restlessness shared by its founders than a desire remain commercially viable in the trend-fixated world of techno. Ten years ago it would have been unthinkable for a Kompakt mix to open with something as traditional as the minimal deep house of Guillaume & the Coutu Dumonts' "Odyssee", as Robag Wruhme does on Wuppdeckmischmampflow. Its stripped-down, jazz-tinged boogie just wasn't within Kompakt's purview, which favored atmosphere over funk. But if the choice doesn't feel like a total curveball in 2011, it's in part because Kompakt's sound has become so wide-ranging that its output seems more defined by mood than any specific production tricks or any subgenre's identifying marks..”
    FullReview here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Thomas Fehlmann, Thomas Brinkman, Deadbeat.

    Gruff Rhys new album entitled “Hotel Shampoo”
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Super Furry Animal, sometime Danger Mouse, Gorillaz and Boom Bip collaborator, and newly minted movie director, Gruff Rhys is quite the renaissance man.

    His return to solo recording picks up where 2007’s ‘Candylion’ left off; producer Andy Votel drawing sirens, seagulls and well-seasoned psychedelica from a complaining shortwave radio set in the brilliantly eclectic album opener ‘Shark Ridden Waters’. Elsewhere, ‘Hotel Shampoo’ shows off a simpler, stripped back Rhys - whose lyrics are placed front and centre of beautifully arranged tracks, each imbued with an infectious energy...”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Bees, Jim Noir, Beck

    Ghostpoet new album entitled “Peanut Butter Blues”
    (Rated at 7/10) )
    Described as “Most hip-hop acts don't make debuts like Peanut Butter Blues & Melancholy Jam. Then again, Ghostpoet, who hails from the United Kingdom and raps just as much as he produces, isn't like most hip-hop acts. Aside from his drunken, off-kilter flow and dubstep-ish beats, he handled all but one element of his debut on his lonesome. The focus here is solely on Ghostpoet's undeniable talents as both a storyteller and a producer....”
    FullReview here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. 13 & God, Earthling, Faithless
  • New Music January 2011

    Jan 15 2011, 13h46

    I use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash January 2011

    Link to all reviews

    Random Recommended Albums

    James Blake new album entitled “James Blake”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “His are fragile, beautiful songs floating over warmly alien, sometimes seemingly formless musical structures yet it’s an effect borne through unconventional levels of space and patience. After hyped singles on Hemlock and R+S he deployed a remix of Feist’s ‘Limit To Your Love’, firing a viral manifesto across YouTube and clammy buses as ringtones and laptops vainly battled to represent its low-hertz loving throbs of sub bass and sparse exposed vocals..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Darkstar, The xx, Khonner

    British Sea Power album entitled “Vallhalla Dancehall”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as“Splicing the spirit of ancient Viking alcoholics with some red-hot Jamaican jah, BSP are finally having fun. Yet their orchestral rock still finds time across thirteen chiming tracks to become thoughtful, melancholic and pastorally emotive. Their distinctly populist chorus opener ‘Who’s In Control’, thrusts us into their moshpit at a raucous live show before they regain composure to deliver a journey that swoons, broods, kicks and breathes epic space. ‘Living Is So Easy’ already sounds like a hardened classic whilst ‘Observe The Skies’ possesses a vibrancy that irrefutably declares we are onto a new addictive page with British Sea Power.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Brakes, Hopes Of The States, Doves

    The Dirtbombs new album entitled “Party Store”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Party Store is an assortment of live band interpretations of classic Detroit techno music of the 80's and early 90's. These are songs Collins digested when they were originally released - at a time where he was already making waves with garage-punk legends the Gories. Songs that run the gamut of subject matter from materialistic future-disco braggadocio "Sharevari" (originally by A Number of Names) to cold, post-industrial isolation of "Alleys of Your Mind" originally by Cybotron) through the instrumental optimism of a worldwide house classic, "Strings of Life" (originally by Derrick May). ALL these themes encapsulate the climate of Detroit both now and at the time of their initial release. Let it be said clearly.this is a record that addresses, at the same time, both the past and the future of Detroit.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Elektro Guzzi, Prinzhorn Dance School, Who Made Who

    Esben and the Witch new album entitled “Violet Cries”
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The band's chief strength is their ability to create a dark, erotically charged atmosphere. Their songs are beguiling, reverb-heavy affairs, built on a tension generated by stormy guitars and Rachel Davies' dramatic singing. Davies is certainly a strong vocal presence, and the Florence comparisons are not unjustified, but the band show no interest in writing anything which could be construed as a pop song; even the album's most accessible moments, like the superb, slow-building single 'Marching Song' and the dramatic 'Chorea', are unlikely to crop up too much on your local radio station's playlist. The group have rejected directness in favour of subtlety and casually sacrificed immediacy in order to construct mesmeric, gothic atmospheres. Anybody who spent their youth listening to Siouxsie and the Banshees and the dream-pop bands signed to 4AD, and anybody who wishes they were old enough to have grown up with those bands, will recognise and appreciate their priorities.”
    FullReview here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Glasser, Portishead, Zola Jesus

    Paris Suit Yourself debut album entitled “My Main Shitstain"
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘What do you want from the ideal debut album? That it excites you, intrigues you, sometimes confuses you? That it takes risks, is hard to place in terms of the records you already know, that it’s short and sharp and bursting with energy and ideas and even hooks? That it makes you laugh, or cry, or has your jaw occasionally scraping along the floor? That it sets out its stall with utter confidence and no reference to what’s going on around it? That it’s delivered with total conviction? That it fits into no pre-defined “trend” or “scene” and instead creates its own space by force of will? If even a few of those are what you’re looking for then My Main Shitstain by Paris Suit Yourself could just be your new favourite record..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Les Georges Leningrad, TV on the Radio, Super Furry Animals.

    Spokes new album entitled “Everyone I Ever Met”
    (Rated at 9/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “While their EP of last year wallowed rather tepidly in soft/loud guitar alchemy, Spokes' debut album proper is a far brighter affair, on which the Mancunian post-rock quartet have utilised the power of vocals to produce memorable songs of frequently towering scale, rather than simply accomplished instrumental pieces. Opener 345 sets out the group's new manifesto with aplomb, as ebullient, group-sung vocals collide with wave-like crescendos of guitar and strings. Elsewhere, We Can Make It Out and Give It Up To The Night are positively anthemic, while Happy Needs Colour and Sun It Never Comes give Spokes ample room to showcase their down tempo, melancholic side. Only When I Was A Daisy, When I Was A Tree finds the band meandering slightly, but as debut albums go Everyone I Ever Met feels fully formed and more than punches its weight; this is leagues beyond what most in their field can muster..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Arcade Fire, Anathallo, Broken Records

    Tipper new album entitled “Broken Soul Jamboree”
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “awaiting review..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Crunch, Vibesquad, Kilowatts.

    Various Artists new album entitled Werkschau
    (Rated at 8/10) ) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Ellen Allien’s Bpitch Control imprint has been running for twelve years and here they celebrate that fact with Werkschau. Instead of looking back, Werkschau looks forward because it features genre crossing unreleased material from new players and old friends. Winners include Ellen Allien’s own sensuous The Kiss, Zander VT’s fresh Gotta Look Up To Get Down and Chaim’s clean cutting The Country. Werkschau serves Bpitch well as a forward thinking celebration of the label’s success..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Cormac, Ellen Allien, WE LOVE
  • Top Albums Of 2010

    Dez 11 2010, 9h35

    Top Albums Of 2010

    I’m not exactly sure why but I love end of year reviews. It’s a great way to find new music and a chance to reassess albums you might have passed over. So if you have time please, tell me what I’ve missed out on, list your top albums of the year or maybe send me a link to any interesting end of year reviews!

    Many thanks to all my Lastfm friends and everybody else on lastfm who helped me broaden my musical horizons this year!

    Top Albums Of 2010

    Number 25


    Recommended track to download…..’In The Wings’

    Number 24

    Shed-The Traveller

    Recommended track to download…..’STP 2’

    Number 23

    Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti-Before Today

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Revolution’s A Lie’

    Number 22

    Madlib-Medicine Show No. 1 Before The Verdict

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Further’

    Number 21

    Gold Panda-Lucky Shiner

    Recommended track to download…..’Same Dream China’

    Number 20

    Best Coast-‘Crazy For You’

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Boyfriend’

    Number 19

    These New Puritans-Hidden

    Recommended track to download…..’We Want War’

    Number 18

    Avey Tare-Down There

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Laughing Hieroglyphic’

    Number 17


    Recommended track to download…..‘Scarecrows On A Killer Slant’

    Number 16


    Recommended track to download…..”Vial Ft. Burial”

    Number 15

    Alex Smoke-Lux

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Ikos’

    Number 14

    Four Tet-There Is Love In You

    Recommended track to download…..”Reversing”

    Number 13

    Sufjan Stevens-The Age of Adz

    Recommended track to download…..’All for Myself”

    Number 12

    Flying Lotus-Cosmogramma

    Recommended track to download….. ...And the World Laughs with You (ft. Thom Yorke)

    Number 11

    M.I.A.-/\/\ /\ Y /\

    Recommended track to download…..’BORN FREE’

    Number 10


    Recommended track to download….. ‘Moments’

    Number 9


    Recommended track to download…..’Always Human’

    Number 8

    Eleven Tigers-Clouds Are Mountains

    Recommended track to download…..Open Mirror

    Number 7

    Deerhunter-Halcyon Digest

    Recommended track to download…..”Earthquake”

    Number 6

    Clubroot-II - MMX

    Recommended track to download….. ‘Orbiting’

    Number 5

    Kanye West-My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

    Recommended track to download…..’Lost In The World (feat. Bon Iver)’

    Number 4

    Lorn-Nothing Else

    Recommended track to download…..’None an Island’

    Number 3

    Mount Kimbie-Crooks & Lovers

    Recommended track to download…..’Tunnelvision’

    Number 2

    Guilty Simpson-OJ Simpson

    Recommended track to download…..’New Heights’

    Number 1


    Recommended track to download…..”Three Sided Shape’

  • New Music November 2010

    Nov 20 2010, 18h23

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash December 2010

    Link to all reviews

    Random Recommended Albums

    Apparat new album entitled “DJ Kicks”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Making the dancefloor both the loneliest and most inquisitive place on Earth, Apparat gets you dancing on emotional quicksand, synths converging into foreboding walls of sound on his own ‘Circles’ and ‘Sayulita’, and a genuine vulnerability testing the shatter resistance of electronic hopes and house dreams. Thom Yorke is a natural installation as a bittersweet figurehead three quarters through, with epiphanies built around Martyn, Joy Orbison and a Burial/Four Tet soul-toucher calming pessimistic waters. Without ever pandering to stage-managed build-ups/breakdowns (he’s no soft touch either), the German finely tunes an epic mix brimming with anticipation.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Modeselektor, Moderat, Ellen Allen

    Brian Eno new album entitled “Small Craft On A Milk Sea”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Eno on Warp - cue spodfans’ cold showers worldwide. Like most things conceptual, any shortcomings are compensated for in accompanying text. The press release mentions an intentional unfinishedness, so it’s fair to say this soundtrack-style effort isn’t a new Eno album proper. Things move from melodic ambience to galloping sci-fi workouts and back again, the highlight being the sublime ‘Emerald And Stone’. Am I actually allowed to criticize this? After all, Eno’s a genius, Warp is religion and I’m a mediocre freelance journalist. But if this was by an unknown hopeful, how rated it would be?
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Vangelis, Murcof, Spyra

    Brasstronaut new album entitled “Mount Chimaera”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “From a record named after the home of a mythical fire-breathing monster, you might be expecting an album of roaring rock, but Vancouver’s Brasstronaut are more icy cold than fiery. Plus, if their heritage lies anywhere, it’s in jazz, with band members playing everything from trumpet, clarinet, and glockenspiel to saxophone, flugelhorn and even some weird wind-synth called an EWI. ‘Mt. Chimaera’ starts as it wishes to continue – with ‘Slow Knots’, a slinky, mournful love song pinned together by skittering drums and muted piano. Elsewhere Edo Van Breemen lends his wounded lyrics to the Yiddish folk-aping backing of ‘Six Toes’, slinky wistful pop of ‘Hearts Trompet’ and the echoey beauty of ‘Same Same’, which together form a stunning record built for late nights and lazy mornings.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. We Are The City, The Zolas, Leif Vollebekk

    Former Ghosts new album entitled “New Love”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Looking at the roll-call for Former Ghosts, it’s fair to think of to it as something of an obscure indietronica supergroup - members of Xiu Xiu and Zola Jesus feature alongside main man Freddy Ruppert. While these musicians have no problem coming together to craft a solid, emotional record, the sound is far from being their own. Joy Division casts long, dark shadow over the project, with Ruppert particular indebted to Ian Curtis’ echoing tones. Only when the rhythmic synths kick in on songs like ‘New Orleans’ and ‘Only In Time’, do Former Ghosts manage to escape into a world of sonic weirdness.
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Cold Cave, Xiu Xiu, The National

    Gonjasufi new album entitled “The Caliph’s Tea Party"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “When The Caliph’s Tea Party hits it does so with real force. Pritchard’s opener, a wonderfully broody reimagining of ‘Ancestors’, is supremely foreboding, all hammer horror organ and shifting curtains of static, and Dam Mantle’s ‘Ageing’ takes a dubstep skeleton and further strips it away to its bare essentials, layering Ecks’ crushed voice over a sparse, glitch-ridden backdrop. At its very best, on Broadcast & The Focus Group’s carnival of the damned-style deconstruction of the title track, it takes the source material in bold new directions, crafting entirely new worlds in the process. In this case it’s an idyllic dream of childhood gradually torn apart by the pressure of outside forces, fitting perfectly alongside the liminal spaces explored by their Witch Cults Of The Radio Age record from last year. Oneohtrix Point Never, meanwhile, leaves his trademark synths largely by the wayside in favour of a sweet, James Ferraro-ish subversion, soaked in slightly sick humour but still strikingly beautiful..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. DJ Krush, Gaslamp Killer, Flying Lotus.

    Modeselektor album entitled “Modeselekton Volume 1”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as“Accompanied by about a dozen ambitious events worldwide, Modeselektor proudly present the kick-off for their new series of 'Modeselektions', an invitation to friends and artists they admire and consider like minded. Constantly in search of the next new beat, Modeselektor focus on their first installment mainly on the progression of Dubstep's offsprings and related or unrelated but similar sounding Techno producers in London, Berlin or elsewhere. The first compilation features tracks from a wide selection of peeps, ranging from Siriusmo & SBTRKT to Robag Wruhme, Shed, Marcel Dettmann and Cylob(!).”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Nathan Fake, Bok Bok, Boyz Noise

    Shigeto new album entitled “Full Circle"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “‘On Shigeto's Ghostly International debut EP Semi Circle, the producer's beats were subdued, cutting the usual overexcited hip-hop with a thin layer of chemically relaxed early Autechre haze. Follow-up EP What We Held On To skimmed that layer, opening up Shigeto's sound and letting the sunlight stream in. Shigeto's debut album Full Circle sees him carefully toeing the line between emerging homogenization and refinement. The album, rather than returning to Semi Circle as its title implies, puts Saginaw's sound through a tumble dryer for an IDM-influenced scrambling.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Flying Lotus, Prefuse 73, Four Tet.

    Sufjan Stevens new album entitled “Age Of Adz”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “It’s unusual for an artist to have wider renown for the scope of their ambition, rather than for a particular piece of work. Yet Sufjan Stevens’ place in pop culture consciousness revolves around his professed desire to write a record about every American state. With just Michigan and Illinois undertaken in the last seven years, the project’s completion seems unlikely, unless Stevens lives far beyond his 35 years. Still, those albums made clear his unique songwriting trademarks – an author’s penetrating eye for detail, and a lilting voice backed by pulsating, rhythmic orchestration.
    Full Review [url= http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/reviews/8d5c]here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Animal Collective, Radical Face, Anathallo

    Thread Pulls new album entitled “New Thoughts”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Thread Pulls are possessed of a regimental, no-frills approach that is rare in a band of their ilk. With every song coming in under the five-minute mark, they have resisted the temptation to get sucked into extended rhythmic assaults, preferring to keep things moving at a steady pace. Ideas are stated, stretched, looped and finished with, all within a time-frame that shouldn’t challenge even the shortest attention spans. The central combination of drums and bass remain locked together throughout, allowing the vocals and trumpet to fill a space that the lack of cymbals and guitars would have left void. Singer and bassist Gavin Duffy’s voice is certainly an unusual instrument, one with an astonishing range (as exemplified on ‘Sink and Swim’) and a certain throwaway tone that will disappoint those looking for sweetness amidst the gloom..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Neubauten, Liquid Liquid, K-X-P

    Twin Shadow new album entitled “Forget”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The most precious treasures are often those found where least expected. Who knew, for example, that George Lewis Jr, toiling away in his Brooklyn digs, was sitting on one of the year’s finest electronic pop records?
    Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor apparently did - he co-produces here - but the joy of discovery remains for the world at large. A daydream-like haze smudges the crispness of the beats while Lewis sings his osmotic melodies, his tones akin to Richard Swift gone disco. ‘Single Slow’ stands tall but is matched throughout in a skyline of towering peaks. A rare find..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Ariel Pink, Tame Impala, TV on the Radio

    Various Artists new album entitled “Worth The Weight:Bristol Dubstep Classics”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Peverelist's Punch Drunk imprint will summarise the last five years Bristol bass music on their latest compilation. Entitled Worth The Weight: Bristol Dubstep Classics, the unmixed double-disc collection showcases plenty of Punch Drunk's own back-catalogue—including tracks from Gatekeeper, RSD, Gemmy, Guido and Peverelist himself—but you can also find selections from the Tectonic, Skull Disco, H.E.N.C.H., Immerse, Idle Hands, Kapsize and Reduction camps across the two CDs. The only concession to older material comes with Smith & Mighty's joyously skippy "B Line Fi Blo," which was originally released in 2002 before being reissued by Punch Drunk's Unearthed sub-label.”
    Full Reviewhere
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Martyn, Burial, Shackleton
  • New Music October 2010

    Out 30 2010, 9h27

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash November 2010

    Link to all reviews

    Random Recommended Albums

    Maps & Atlases new album entitled “Perch Patchwork”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Maps & Atlases released a few EPs before Perch Patchwork, their debut full-length, and the band has done a fair amount of growing up in the meantime. Those early releases were classic math-rock, typified by busy guitar lines borrowed from 90s bands like Don Caballero. Maps & Atlases are far from the only band from Chicago to use that sound as a starting point, but they're one of the few to try and move it forward and successfully translate it into pop songs. Perch Patchwork almost leaves the flashy musicianship entirely behind; when it is there, it puts it to good use-- here they turn their quirks into something diverse and accessible..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Band of Horses, Don Caballero, Grizzly Bear

    Maddslinky new album entitled “Make A Change”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Bass glorious bass from Zed Bias, spanning the science of cone control within a speaker stack that projects as much fresh suppleness as it does intimidation. Working up to ‘Neighbourhood’-style tantrums amidst the crucial dynamic of female-responsive swing, house, broken beat, 2-step, dubstep (the hook-up with Skream a great moment of master meets pupil) and the threads in between are engineered with Bias’ guessing games running a pre/peak/post party timetable. ‘Make a Change’ is cosmopolitan, reverential, up-to-the-minute and not a little dapper, showing the sort of style and mettle that 2010 ‘best of’ lists love.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Part 2, El-B, Kode 9

    Avey Tare new album entitled “Down There"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Murky, gloopy and distinctly moist, Dave Portner has stepped out of his world of the Animal Collective to engage in some reptile isolation. His debut solo album is obsessed with the swamp and its crocodile. Aquatic, mysterious and sloshing with deep rhythms, it’s an experimental aside that sees him retain the signature vocals of his day job with lots of glowing reverby falsetto but dive deeper into bass and layered electronic musings. Half the tracks see the beats surface into formed drums but for the rest the stratification and distortion takes the sound field to new places. Dangerously engaging.!"
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Panda Bear, Atlas Sound, High Places.

    Clinic new album entitled “Bubblegum"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “First things first, Bubblegum is a super title for Clinic’s sixth album. Second things second, the Miles Davis-esque artwork is equally fitting, for Bubblegum is one of Clinic’s most capricious recordings. Offering themselves up fully to the possibilities of pop music in its most open forms has enlivened a playfulness that was previously latent and, thank goodness, they’ve all but ditched the Philips Philicorda whine that grates on some of their earlier records. They are not as fierce or rasping as they once were in sound alone, but that makes for a rather relaxed sort of melodic chaos, equally informed by lounge-pop of the 60s and the garage rock they have referenced in the past. This is, for want a better of a better expression, a right old laugh of a record.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Electrelane, Liars, Broadcast.

    Frankie Rose and The Outs album entitled “Frankie Rose And The Outs”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as“Frankie Rose is a Brooklyn bartender best known for her drum/vocal/guitar work with fuzzed-out retro acts like Crystal Stilts, Vivian Girls, and Dum Dum Girls. As she bounced from one project to the next (in some cases before she was even considered a proper member), the distinctive threads that joined these bands-- garage-rock ethos, dour jangle pop, 60s girl-group harmonies, questionable sonic fidelity-- suggested Rose had a clearly defined musical M.O. But with her fourth project in almost as many years, Rose is taking on a different approach: She seems intent on creating a harmonically driven, high-fidelity throwback pop album-- a novel concept among the dozens of her lo-fi peers looking to similar sounds for inspiration.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Super Wild Horses, Viva Voce, All Saints Day

    Gold Panda new album entitled “Lucky Shiner”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Named after his Grandmother, ‘Lucky Shiner’ is Gold Panda’s debut album and one of the warmest and most vibrant electronic debuts of the year. Panda caresses a truly eclectic blend of influences and disparate sounds, including eastern instrumentation and large swathes of noise, to create a unique spirit of adventure and individuality - truly embossing a sense of personality and warmth onto cold static patterns. Mixed by Simian Mobile Disco’s James Ford, ‘Lucky Shiner’ is one of the most innovative and mind-melding albums of the year and one that just keeps on giving.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Field, Four Tet, Mount Kimbie

    Violens new album entitled “Amoral”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Going by all indications previous to this debut album, New York's Violens specialise in dark, melancholic but danceable 80-referencing indie which recalls New Order, Depeche Mode and Sisters of Mercy. So it's a bit of a surprise that the first two tracks on Amoral sound so positively light-hearted. 'The Dawn of Your Happiness' begins which a funky slap bassline which could have come from a Seinfeld episode. With its ringing, plangent guitar chords, jaunty rhythm and wry but downcast vocals from singer Jorge Elbrecht, it bears the unmistakeable influence of the more florid end of 80s indie pop, such as Orange Juice, Haircut 100 and The Smiths. Second track 'Full Collision' is, if anything, even more indebted to these bands, although it ends on a spiky note with an extended burst of atonal noise. That aside, both songs are real pop gems....”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Roxy Music, Sonic Youth, Black Tambourine

    Teebs new album entitled “Ardour”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “It isn’t surprising to learn that electronica artist Teebs, hailing from Los Angeles’ Chino Hills, is also a devoted painter. On ‘Ardours’, the 23-year-old pores over each of his 18 tracks with a loving meticulousness, starting many on a sparse canvas and then filling them with fragile melodic loops, smattering glitchy beats and minimal low-freq. Picking apart the LP reveals little more than these delicate foundations, yet, as in ‘Moments’’ fluttering piano trills, the way they coalesce together in his palette to form short segments of flickering beauty gives the work an unconstrained, opulent presence that’s greater than the sum of its parts.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. yuk., Juj, Jeremiah Jae

    Mice Parade new album entitled “What It Means To Be Left Handed”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    Described as “Here in the post-post-rock diaspora, the original post-rockers keep getting mellower. Sure, Jim O'Rourke just announced a new free jazz/noise rock project, but Archer Prewitt is well into his Cat Stevens phase, and even John McEntire is picking up a credit on the new Bright Eyes. Meanwhile, it's been nearly a decade since former Swirlies member Adam Pierce launched his anagrammatical Mice Parade project, and its seventh album, and first self-titled, happens to be its most traditionally song-oriented.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Acorn, Mum, The Pomegranates

    Glasser new album entitled “Ring True”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “There really are some weird women out there right now. If it’s not Natasha Khan (aka Bat For Lashes) writing an entire album about her blonde alter-ego inspired by David Lynch’s fascination with transvestites, it’s Fever Ray’s Karin Dreijer Andersson dressing her band like a gang of melted Mrs Doubtfires, and herself like a chess board. Enter Glasser, otherwise known as Cameron Mesirow. Stylistically not as outrageous as her contemporaries, in the past the LA native has wrestled with sleep paralyses on a nightly basis and, as a child, night terrors where she’d be haunted by foul hallucinations during her waking hours. Which can’t have been much fun, but sure makes for a warped imagination...”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Little Dragon, Four Tet, Bjork

    Fenin new album entitled “Mixes & Maxis”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “If you’d force me to do a list of my all-time-Shitkatapult Top 5 NONE OF THEM by Lars FENIN would be one of the first titles I count in. This outstanding track of his double album GROUNDED in 2005 assembles the best of two music worlds: reggae and techno. The songwriting by FENIN combined with the voice of GORBI still gives me goosebumps - and to the people I played it, too, at home or on the floor. ROBAG WRUHME and the WIGHNOMY BROTHERS charted it for a long time as number one on their dj charts and we all knew that this track had to be included into FENIN´s upcoming MIXES & MAXIS album. Here now, we have the 12” featuring NONE OF THEM in a floor killer remix by ROBAG WRUHME and a dub remix version on the flip side. This is a big one! A1 // None Of Them (Robags Wokksikon Remikks) B1 // None Of Them (Robags Berfa Lubb Dubbse).”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Mikkel Metal, Deadbeat, Quantec

    Darkstar new album entitled “North”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Containing hardly any dub, and very little step for that matter, ‘North’ presents continuing evidence as to the chimerical nature of dubstep, and the Hyperdub label in particular. Like a virus-ridden PC vainly trying to upload lovelorn messages over dial-up to its neglectful owner, this side-stepping of the usual Hyperdub format is most welcome. We want more..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. James Blake, Cooly G, Untold
  • New Music September 2010

    Set 19 2010, 7h49

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash October 2010


    Random Recommended Albums

    Manic Street Preachers new album entitled “Postcards From A Young Man”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “If last year's Journal for Plague Lovers was the Manics' message from the ghost of their past to their present, this is their present's postcard to their mid-career pop peak. It's – and this isn't a phrase often associated with the Manics – an incredibly jolly rock record.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Who, David Bowie, Echo And The Bunnymen

    Kano new album entitled “Method To The Madness”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Until now, Kano's major musical contribution of 2010 was his guest appearance on Gorillaz' White Flag. Like Damon Albarn – who produces a track here – the Newham rapper knows how to build a coalition of the musically willing and exciting. Method to the Maadness is Kano's fourth record, and like other London grime perennials Dizzee and Wiley, he's now operating from his own label. The lack of label heft is a shame, because this is a record that deserves at least a modicum of Rascalesque success. Take Upside: a great UK hip-hop moment released in July, and a Limey cousin to Empire State of Mind, with Michelle Breeze taking the part of Alicia Keys. It didn't even chart. Then there's the clutchy musical tiki-taka of All + All Together, with Hot Chip, and the sinister dancehall glockenspiel of Get Wild with Wiley: both scintillating. A crappy spoof of a Radio 5 Live "state of the youth nation" phone-in is the only thing that grates, but you can forgive him that. There's little madness in Kano's methods.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Wiley, Skepta, Sway

    Matthew Herbert new album entitled “One One”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “While Matthew Herbert's methods of recording audio samples are inspiring and outlandish, he always captures a bit of the human element. It's not just because his discography includes a noisy digestive tract turned into a euphoric house melody; there's an appreciation for randomness, mistakes, and chaos that runs through his work. On his new solo album, One One, an artist who weaves multiple meanings into his music through contextual sampling strips down to a single source: himself.”
    Full Review here
    Recommended tracks to download…..”On The Lam”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Radioboy, Oval, Akufen,

    WE LOVE new album entitled “We Love"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Italian duo We Love (one Giorgia Angiuli and Piero Fragola) plough a similar groove to the aforementioned emperor’s new clothes. They’ve got songs called things like Ice Lips and Escape Destination. They dress in a colour scheme that sticks stubbornly to black and white. Chances are they were both voted "‘most unlikely to instigate a conga on New Year’s Eve" upon graduation from secondary school. More so, like The xx, they’re just one astute music critic (hey, like, thanks!) from bringing down the house of cards they’ve assembled around themselves by bellowing, "HEY! GUYS! YOU SOUND JUST LIKE ZERO 7!"
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Damscray, 140 ways to, Gavouna.

    Magnetic Man new album entitled “Magnetic Man"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “The anticipation behind Magnetic Man's self-titled debut album has been built up as something that could very well be another milestone in the seemingly never-ending rise of dubstep. Well-known DJs Skream, Benga, and Artwork are the men behind the moniker and have already had some mainstream success this year. I Need Air broke into the Top 10 on the UK singles chart after heavy rotation on BBC Radio 1, sitting alongside such radio playlist luminaries such as Katy Perry and Flo Rida - admittedly, pretty illustrious company.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Benga, Skream, Artwork.

    Crocodiles album entitled “Sleep Forever”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as“I The paradoxical thing about some of music’s more noted dealers in feedback is that their studio recordings are often as genteel as the live experience is cacophonous. This most obviously applies to shoegaze bands – frail and ethereal on record, painfully loud in person – but even the likes of the early Jesus and Mary Chain were far suppler in the studio than their deafening gigs suggested. There’s a fairly simple reason for this: where quieter strains of feedback afford an extensive, melodious palette, then at louder volumes you simply get a sort of ‘KSSSCHHSHSCHHH’ noise, which may sound pretty cool when My Bloody Valentine bash it out at 120db, but is pretty lame on a personal stereo.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Jesus and Mary Chain, Spiritualized, My Bloody Valentine

    DJ Zinc new album entitled “Crack House Vol 2”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Crack House 2 embraces elements of dubstep, UK funky, grime, garage and even, on Old Flame, classic Prodigy-style rave sonics. Zinc shows a different side to his studio skills with the lush, ambient Huh? whilst more energised instrumental workouts such as opener Bounce Up, GTAC and bassline wobbler Mouthful sit alongside vocal tracks. Angela Hunter, who featured in Zinc's first dose of Crack House and also played a part Jay-Z's all-conquering Empire State Of Mind, makes a welcome return here for steamy, suggestive and deceptively catchy Gimme The Camera. Jamie George supplies smooth, soulful vocals on the garage-tinged Love To Feel This Way, while another Jamie – London grime star and Boy Better Know lynchpin JME, aka Jamie Adenuga – features on the rugged and raw Let's Go. Crack House 2 reflects both Zinc's reinvigorated, refreshed approach and the current adventurous spirit of dance music – a welcome shift that's leading to fresh hybrid sounds, genre-melting collaborations and an all round creative renaissance...”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. DJ Hypel, Toddla T, Wookie

    Blonde Redhead new album entitled “Penny Sparkle”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Penny Sparkle, their eighth official studio album, is a downbeat, glossed affair that largely dispenses with the busy guitar camouflage of past records in favour of glacially cool synth and Kazu Makino’s ice-maiden wail. They’re a band who’ve always possessed an understated beauty but where it might have seeped and soaked through previously, with the absence of the droning guitar dynamics heard on 2007’s 23, here it’s allowed to flourish”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Cocteau Twins, Asobi Seksu, Seefeel

    Black Mountain new album entitled “Wilderness Heart”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    Described as “Black Mountain's third album represents the finest yield so far from the Vancouver band’s relentless harvesting of rock and folk's 70s heyday. Wilderness Heart refuses to dive into unfamiliar territory, instead expertly blending heavy rock, smoky blues and finger-picked acoustic guitars across an album of tantalisingly layered songs”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Pink Mountaintops, Neil Young, Sleepy Sun

    Shit Robot new album entitled “From The Cradle To The Rave”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “While several of Lambkin’s past releases have been instrumental, all nine of From the Cradle to the Rave’s tracks sport vocals. On opening tracks Tuff Enuff and I Found Love, Lambkin himself provides them. The former is a sturdy bit of 808-driven house music, a workout-pace rhythm jacking along while euphoric synths, like Kraftwerk at their most celebratory, swoop overhead. I Found Love might have worked better as an instrumental, though, Lambkin choosing to inflect his FX-laden vocal with a Texan accent for reasons entirely obscure..”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Khan, LCD Soundsystem, Gomma Records
    http://www.myspace.com/shitrobot /

    For a Minor Reflection new album entitled “holdum i att ao oreiou”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Eight songs in, this Icelandic quartet capture a degree of malevolence and snotty abandonment that recalls a slowed-down Killing Joke tussling with Godspeed You! Black Emperor, pitching and yawing like a tiny boat in a storm. Atta, the song in question, is a seductively grim riot that speaks of a primal urge to move on and escape. Unfortunately the remainder of FAMR’s second album – recorded in Sigur Ros’s Reykjavik studio – is a woolly and aimless guided tour of the genre known as post-rock, lacking personality, pep and pique. Every colour in the palette established by Mogwai, Explosions In The Sky and their aforementioned compatriots is predictably present here – grand pianos, crashing cymbals, delayed guitar, glockenspiel, military beats, found sounds, reverb by the ton – with fresh momentum or exploratory ambition palpably absent. Nor is there anything to rival the blasted epiphanies wrought by their predecessors, rendering this album akin to a fumbled, unfinished grope under wet canvas. The title translates as Heading Towards Chaos, but FAMR are treading water in a stagnant pool.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Sigur Ros, Explosions in the Sky, Mogwai

    Roots Manuva new album entitled “Duppy Writer”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Duppy Writer goes one further than its spiritual predecessors – 2002’s speaker-shaking Dub Come Save Me and 2006 mixes-and-outtakes collection Alternately Deep – slicing apart Slime & Reason alongside choice tracks across Smith’s entire legacy. Wrongtom’s distance from the originals pays dividends, accentuating the lolloping Jamaican flex at Smith’s musical heart and providing a central riff off which almost all 11 tunes – and two skits – sunnily ride.”
    Full Review here
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Robert Forster, Sparklehorse, Elliot Smith
  • New Music August 2010

    Ago 10 2010, 21h43

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash September 2010

    Link to current issue

    Random Recommended Albums

    Arcade Fire new album entitled “Suburbs”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Flipping the mundane trappings of suburban life into a captivating concept album, The Arcade Fire once more whip us into transcendental flight that’s a confident step forwards.

    Taking their perennial themes of loss, fear, control and time they’ve re-woven their epic art rock around their fascinating suburban theme that literally lies on our own doorstep. Album reviews are often littered with hyperbole yet ‘Suburbs’ flattens them like the demolition balls that have so shaped their urban subject matter. Growing old gracefully with their existential angst they’ve once again captured yet more amorphous facets of the human condition in not so much a labour of love, as a labour of life. Further proof that The Arcade Fire may indeed be the best band on the planet. Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Broken Social Scene, The Shins, Wolf Parade

    Autolux album entitled “Transit Transit”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as“In some respects, Trent Reznor inviting Autolux to support Nine Inch Nails on their 2005 American tour raised more eyebrows than him recording an album at the site of the Manson Family murders ever did.
    The fact that Azar, guitarist Greg Edwards and bassist Eugene Goreshter’s voices are so androgynous in unison, and that they nod heavily towards My Bloody Valentine, means that Transit Transit sticks out far less amidst the current shoegazing revival than Future Perfect did six years ago. But where people now use the term dream-pop to describe a band like School of Seven Bells, whose music is one warm amorphous haze, it actually suits Autolux much more: Transit Transit is full of the sort of implausible leaps of imagination that normally only happen in your sleep..“
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Low, Fugazi, Silversun Pickups

    Matthew Dear new album entitled “Black City”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Black City is one of the albums of the year – and the year is 1981. You could easily imagine it being played alongside Grace Jones’ Nightclubbing, early 23 Skidoo, Japan’s Art of Parties single, extended 12-inch dance versions of tracks from Talking Heads’ Remain in Light and especially the music from David Byrne and Brian Eno’s My Life in the Bush of Ghosts project. It is a collection of cerebral funk and brainiac disco from the Michigan DJ, producer, remixer (for, among others, The xx and Hot Chip), label owner and recording artist under several aliases.

    Shortwave is a slower form of ethno-electronica – swamptronica, perhaps. More Surgery evinces the influence of Kraftwerk. There is some superb stuff here – Gem unfolds like the aural equivalent of time-lapse photography. And throughout there is an attention to detail, to little tics and tricks in the mix, that make this a treat for listeners who still wear headphones. But mostly it’s music for defunct – or, rather, Defunkt – nightclubs.
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Memory Band, LCD Soundsystem, Arthur Russell

    High Frequency Bandwidth new album entitled “Hell, Fire And Brimstone”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Electronic duo High Frequency Bandwidth are set to release their debut full-length, Hell Fire and Brimstone, on the British label Malicious Damage.

    HFB is the most recent project of Dr Alex Paterson, the brain behind the The Orb and all around electronic music guru. The duo's other half is Dom Beken, a jack of all trades whose credentials include studio work for David Bowie and music production for everything from TV commercials to Bollywood Films. HFB have so far released several tracks digitally, and produced the score for the Playstation 3 game PixelJunk Shooter, which recently earned them a BAFTA nomination. On Hell Fire and Brimstone, Beken and Paterson continue to blend electronic beats and elements of hip-hop, with guest appearances by Funky DL and Dynamax of Zulu Nation. In keeping with their weird titular motif, all tracks on the new record begin with the letters H, F and B, along with almost everything else in the duo's catalog so far.’
    Recommended tracks to download…..”On The Lam”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Orb, Solex, Parliament,

    Klashnekoff new album entitled “Back To The Sagas"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Hackney-based rapper Klashnekoff has been on the UK hip hop scene for the best part of 10 years, yet this is only his third studio album. After 2007’s Lionheart showed distinct commercial leanings, this is a reconnect with his less-compromising 2004 debut, The Sagas of Klashnekoff. And that’s what causes the problems: since the first Sagas, er, saga, there’s been a progressive maturity about his music, but these new vocals have moved backwards.

    Ironically, what could’ve been a groundbreaking UK hip hop album has pretty much ensured it can’t succeed as anything other than a collection of club singles. That way it’ll get broken up, and few will pay attention to the vocals...”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Braintax, Skinnyman, Jehst.

    Klaxons new album entitled “Surfing The Void”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Funny bunch those Klaxon lads. Once pioneers of a new, exciting movement (whether it be Nu-rave or not I couldn’t care less), they became embroiled in mass hysteria, with kids lovingly launching glo-sticks at them, they were picking up celebrity girlfriends and superstar collaborations, alongside overwhelming critical acclaim – including a Mercury Music prize, and many journalist’s album of 2007 for their debut, Myths Of The Near Future.

    Surfing the Void is an album with ten good, solid songs, so therefore it’s a good album, but rather than break ground, the Klaxons have just shaken it up a bit. Funny bunch...”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Crystal Castles, Late of the Pier, We Have Band

    Posthuman new album entitled “Syn Emergence”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “It's been a long and varied journey for the Posthuman pairing of cousins Richard Bevan and Joshu Doherty. Since debuting in 2001 with releases for the likes of Skam's ultra-collectable Smak sub-label and putting on a range of cutting edge parties in London, they have covered a lot of (under)ground. Initially occupying a space somewhere between abstract electronica and off-kilter electro, their last effort The Peoples Republic was something of an introspective downtempo epic, employing guest artists of wide renown to create a richly emotional palette of sound. It takes only the opening seconds of Syn Emergence to realise this is far from being more of the same. Opener Brickhead is a brassy, ballsy number straight from the off, espousing a fighty dancefloor attitude that permeates much of the album — distant memories of acoustic instruments are instantly crushed underfoot.

    The only criticism I have of Syn Emergence is that unlike previous Posthuman full-lengths, this one doesn't really feel cohesive, partly because it's too relentless to offer itself up for serious home listening time. If it weren't for the ridiculously extravagant package (double picture disc vinyl in a gatefold UV varnished picture sleeve with an embedded cd anyone...? Yep, thought so!) this would have probably worked much better as a pair of twelves aimed at the DJ fraternity. Having said that, Stockholm Syndrome (Part 1) fuses dubstep with rave powered Brit-tech of the highest calibre and the closer Se Ces One (a good 15bpm slower than the rest of the tracks here), shows the kind of smacked-out deep groove the cousins are capable of when they put the hammer down and pick up a subtler tool — it is also by far the albums' finest moment. With the super lush packaging and artwork (Bevan's intricate graphics are a thing of true beauty), as a physical item it is downright irresistable. You owe it to your record collection to check it out..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Digitonal, Dave Clarke

    PVT new album entitled “Church With No Magic”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    Described as” Pivot may have lost a few vowels from their name, but they’ve gained some vocals in return. Where their Warp debut was all wobbly John Carpenter synths and fuzzy soundscapes, ‘Church With No Magic’ has more conventional songs. ‘Light Up Bright Fires’ sounds not unlike Nine Inch Nails’ more melodic moments, and ‘Window’ is almost pop.

    Good stuff, but their epics, like ‘The Quick Mile’, are curiously unengaging. When that track is immediately followed up by the captivating Eno-esque minimalism of ‘Waves & Radiation’, it’s clear that their real talent still lies in crafting eerie electronic vistas...”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Pivot, Nice Nice, Active Child

    Philip Selway new album entitled “Familial”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Following in the footsteps of Ringo Starr, Dave Grohl and Phil Collins, Radiohead's Philip Selway is the latest big-name drummer to step out from behind his kit and make a solo record, trading in his drums for a guitar and a mic. His debut album, "Familial" -- set for release Aug. 31 on Nonesuch Records in the United States and a day earlier in the United Kingdom on Bella Union -- features collaborations with Lisa Germano, Soul Coughing's Sebastian Steinberg and Wilco's Glenn Kotche and Patrick Sansone.

    It's a world apart from what I do in Radiohead," Selway says of the album's pared-down, acoustic sound. As he prepared for solo dates in August and September, he spoke with Billboard about the record -- and Radiohead's future..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Robert Forster, Sparklehorse, Elliot Smith

    Skream new album entitled “Outside The Box”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “It’s been five whole years since Skream became dubstep’s first true superstar with sub-bass smash ‘Midnight Request Line’. Hard to believe the nation’s favourite dance genre began as a boys-only club of two-step outcasts shuffling nervously around a fawning Mary Anne Hobbes on a half-empty dancefloor. What is a boy wonder to do in 2010?

    Answer: give a little bit of everything. From the moody chasms of ‘Metamorphosis’ to the onomatopoeic LFO-driven ‘Wibble’, this is a true chocolate box of dubstep’s disparate splinter styles, proving Skream has most certainly still got it..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Ikonika, JKamata, Joy Orbison

    The Domino State new album entitled “Uneasy Lies The Crown"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as“‘The Domino State have been stirring up the media lately with their single, ‘Firefly’. Whenever I’ve seen their name in print it is invariably followed with imagery such as “epic”, “brooding” and “doom-laden”. My kind of language. So when it came time for the five-piece to unveil their debut album it was never going to be a question of whether I’d take the bait, but rather how quickly could The Domino State reel me in.

    All things considered, I find myself having to question the ‘doom-laden’ tag. Bands like Exit Calm and Repeater are probably ahead on the angst stakes. What The Domino State do best are their unabashed anthems, their liberated, impassioned choruses. A track such as ‘What’s The Question’ provokes comparison with ‘Only Forever’ era Puressence, a time when the Mancunians were at their sweeping, majestic best. Just listen to how those strings surge. This isn’t the doleful, self-doubting sound of the inner-city. This is a warm, swelling, rallying cry with a lungful of the cleanest air.

    Persevere with that crown guys. You might have to get used to it..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Veil Veil Vanish, Exit Calm, Shiloe

    Unearthing new album entitled “Unearthing”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “In this universe, as opposed to the proverbial parallel one, a two-hour dramatic reading of a biographical essay written by one comic-book author about another should be the sort of thing that inspires more snoring than awe. Thankfully, the men of Unearthing are only marginally of this plane of existence, and what they’ve created is positively out of this world. Here, Watchmen mastermind Alan Moore narrates his biographical tribute to his mentor/colleague Steve Moore (no relation) over a score by Crook&Flail, a.k.a. Subtle’s Adam “Doseone” Drucker and Fog’s Andrew Broder. The music is Mogwai meets Subtle meets John Zorn: sludgy and percussive; at times ambient, electronic, or piano-based; often epic; and, in short, the perfect atmosphere for the gorgeous mutterings of a mad genius. It takes one to know one, or rather, it takes a handful to soundtrack the biggest of them all. Mike Patton, Mogwai’s Stuart Braithwaite, Zach Hill of Hella, and Jesu’s Justin Broadrick all stop by to contribute to the post-everything ethereal jambalaya, but the most important presence is Alan Moore himself. He describes his subject with such stunning, artful detail—”Fine wrinkles spreading from the corners of his eyes, curved up around the brow, curved down around the cheekbones, face like a magnetic field”—that it’s easy to get lost in Unearthing’s rarified air almost immediately. Moore’s voice is a form of music, too, a low British growl that hypnotizes with its mastery of cadence, consonance, alliteration, and occasional rhyme, inspiring breathless waiting as he works his way toward the “final panel” in this aural graphic novel. Far more than one man’s history, Unearthing presents a mythology steeped not only in London’s own rich past, but in the two Moores’ fascination with the occult, vividly borne out as a one-of-a-kind document that, lucky for us, is playable through headphones.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. cLOUDDEAD, Blue Jam
  • New Music July 2010

    Jul 24 2010, 8h19

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash August 2010

    All Clash Music Reviews

    Random Recommended Albums

    Bombay Bicycle Club new album entitled “Flaws”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as ”Last year's I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose unveiled Bombay Bicycle Club as an indie band with zest, harmonies and effects pedals. However, the follow-up finds them ditching electric guitars for acoustic folk, enabling guitarist Jamie MacColl to follow his dynastic calling – his musician father Neill co-produces. There are some lovely songs – Many Ways is particularly pleasantly reminiscent of the first Lilac Time album. However, none of Jack Steadman's own words quite match the descriptive beauty in a cover of John Martyn's Fairytale Lullaby ("Bow your head, let your eyelids close on down"). Although the occasional restrained bass works well, this transitional album works best with just voice and guitar: Rinse Me Down would sound better without any drums, never mind machine gun rolls. Leaving Blues is Steadman's haunting account of having to say goodbye, which he might find himself singing to the rhythm section before long..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The National, Nick Drake, The Duke And The King

    Grasscut new album entitled “1 Inch / ¼ Mile”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Found sounds and field recordings provide the source material for the latest shuriken chuckers at Ninja HQ, the music of Grasscut leant a quintessentially British quality by folk song samples, the plummy pronunciation of BBC announcers and plenty of talk about the war. The result is some distance from the entirely horizontal soundscapes of Jarvis Cocker’s recent National Trust project however, with composer Andrew Phillips and his multi-instrumentalist compadre Marcus O’Dair having thrown plenty of big beats, bleeps and buzz saw analogue synths into the mix for a record closer to MGMT than Eno ambience. Brilliantly bizarre. Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Memory Band, Parsley Sound, The Squire Of Somerton

    Health new album entitled “Disco2”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Remix albums are something I don’t often look forward to. They typically are not as innovative or unique as the original works attributed within. There is an exception to this trait, and it can be found in the LA-based noise-rock outfit HEALTH and their DISCO series. The band’s self-titled debut was packed with off-beat, hyped-up noise rock that, as the genre would hint, was often abrasive and eccentric. The first installment of DISCO followed suit, but with electronic beats that took the band from intensity in eclecticism to intensity on the dance floor. Case in point was the stellar remix of “Crimewave” by Crystal Castles. DISCO 2 follows suit, this time pulling off the band’s second album Get Color. Get Color found the band expanding beyond the suddenness of their debut, which often saw HEALTH incessantly flipping the switch from overwhelmingly loud guitar riffs to near silence. Opener “In Heat” is noise with none of the breaks. Hit track “Die Slow” has a consistency in beat yet maintains the noise descriptor. In this, the band is more dynamic and they are dipping their toes into new avenues that find more harmonizing in vocals, which compound into an eerie mess of greatness. This feature in particular lends itself well to the opportunities presented with DISCO revisted, or DISCO 2. Equally as unique as the original DISCO, DISCO 2 is dance-floor worthy and the star is again “Die Slow”, here dubbed the “TOBACCO RMX”. You’ll also find substantial collaborations with artists like Small Black, who takes a stab at editing “Severin”, and (again) Crystal Castles on “Eat Flesh”. You’ll also catch works by Javelin and Gold Panda, to name a few. What is perhaps most astonishing is HEALTH’s ability to not only put together an entirely solid noise rock album, but to also consistently follow it up with a remix album that actually tops the original. That’s saying a lot, as my first-hand experience will tell you that HEALTH is a band you absolutely want to see live.
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Liars, Fuck Buttons, No Age

    Max Richter new album entitled “INFRA”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Instrumental pieces are often good, rarely great. The abstract musical vocabulary, conveying feelings without lyrical assistance, requires a delicate touch and ambitious execution. Max Richter does not make background music. All four of his previous albums command your attention and ‘Infra’, expanded from the soundtrack to a 2008 ballet of the same name, is no different. At times agitated and claustrophobic, at others mournful and emotive, this album needs time to breathe. While the pace hardly fluctuates wildly, the constant twists and turns create an emotional collage that’s stunning: expect to be left contemplative and euphoric in equal measure..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Peter Broderick, Goldmund, Olafur Arnalds

    Memomena new album entitled “Mines”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “It would be tough for any band to follow up a classic like 2007’s Friend or Foe with the triumvirate of awesomeness that starts the record: it’s one of the best albums in the last five years. When you take three years to follow up the record, the fans and listeners can’t help but to expect Mines to be better, or at least as good. “Queen Black Acid” goes a long way toward making that a reality, with its slick, patient baseline. It’s easily one of the best songs the band has done to date, yet second song “TAOS” feels clunky and a little awkward, though there are redeeming moments musically. The lyrics are blah, but they are bold enough to sing them clearly. Mines really gets good with “Dirty Cartoons” featuring Danny Seim on lead vocals. Seim rarely sang on past records, but all three members contribute vocally to this one, adding a communal feel. The album could stand on its own without any vocals like 2005’s Under an Hour. The many layers and thoughtful moments make it almost worth the three year wait.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Ramona Falls, TV on the Radio, Grandaddy

    M.I.A. new album entitled “/\/\/\Y/\”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “With schizophrenic aplomb M.I.A. has unleashed her most adventurous and uncompromising album so far. It’s the sound of war, warped data, heavy machinery, politics and oppression all rolled into one coherent transmission and spat out with raps and rhymes as strong as we’d expect. Audacious productions such as Rusko’s ‘Story To Be Told’ are an example of next level club bangers sheathed in the terror of the sounds of sophisticated sonic warfare, whilst ‘Muscle’ is the funkiest slice of sunlight to come from beneath Diplo’s studio door for some time. There’s thrash guitars rubbing up against dancehall, distorted soundscapes leading us to spaced out pop, whilst huge tracts are delightfully indescribable. Lead single ‘XXXO’ is a filthy R‘n’B Trojan Horse that thrusts two fingers up at America’s plastic pop machine and its suited executives before riding to snappy glory on her own firm terms.
    Maya’s trajectory and output is now utterly unique. ‘/\/\ /\ Y /\’ thrills with its statements and brutal treatment of sonics that will have iTunes in classification prolapse. She’s always operated on the outside of pop, yet she’s become a deft burglar of the establishment before retreating to isolation and concocting her next move. M.I.A. stands alone in her own world of pop firing out her mercurial messages, which are as complex as they are captivating. ‘/\/\ /\ Y /\’ is a towering work that makes a mockery of rivals and genres.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Diplo, Santigold

    Mount Kimbie new album entitled “Crooks And Lovers"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Mount Kimbie are a double hype band, being one of the most exciting proponents of the in-vogue dubstep genre. Their debut album splinters dubstep into a more percussive, more introspective and ambient experimental form, to strange and interesting effect; melancholic opener ‘Tunnel Vision’ sounds like a scout troupe playing camp fire songs in purgatory, with strange chanting and backwards guitar chords.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. James Blake, Blue Daisey, Falty DL.

    Mystery Jets new album entitled “Serotonin”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The Eel Pie Islanders' sees the band mature as songwriters, which should attract the mainstream attention that's so overdue them.
    Opener 'Alice Springs' sees the band lace themselves in psychedelic heaven complete with fuzzy guitars and a whole lot of class, whilst instant classic 'Dreaming of Another World' is what The Drums would sound like if they weren't so lo-fi and had a penchant for synths.
    A fantastic album from a band that deserve to be massive.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Drums, Villagers

    School of Seven Bells album entitled “Disconnect From Desire”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    b]Described as “Disconnect From Desire’ wastes no time in setting up School Of Seven Bells’ icy, futuristic soundscapes. From the chilling vocals of opener ‘Windstorm’ and the throbbing robotics of ‘Heart Is Strange’, the band’s second album begins a bracing journey through a dream-like world. For all its forward thinking, the combination of shoe-gaze and synthy electronica leads the record inevitably back to the 1980s, mirroring the haunting sound that M83 have perfected so well. Though the luscious wall of sound becomes a bit predictable by the record’s second half, it’s still an interesting step forward.“
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins

    Tokyo Police Club new album entitled “Champ"
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Canada’s Tokyo Police Club are the posterboys of heartfelt hard-and-fast indie pop. ‘Champ’ follows the release of the excellent ‘Elephant Shell’, and like its predecessor drips with North American boyhood and cajole. Openers ‘Favourite Food’ and ‘Favourite Colour’ are the first signs of songwriting maturity, but TPC keep their trademark sound snug against their chests - the sound that is at once warm, tight and breathtakingly exhilarating - following right through to ‘End Of A Spark’ and the bittersweet ‘Frankenstein’. Again, like their previous work, ‘Champ’ is a short and sweet affair - but not one to miss or forget..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. We Are Scientists, Metric, Death Cab for Cutie.

    The Books new album entitled “The Way Out”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    Described as “It’s easy to get the impression that The Books are merely slapping wacky audio bits together and then playing quiet instrumentals underneath them. They are working on an abstract concept all their own, so one would be forgiven for suggesting the guys are just haphazardly throwing shit against a wall and seeing what sticks. No, their process is far more refined and carefully motivated by the mood and tone of their instrumentals, the samples being conscious choices with similar themes and matched to evoke certain reactions from the listener. Take the track “I Didn’t Know That”, which strings together a number of children and adults all saying the title with varying degrees of enthusiasm. The skittering drums and jazzy guitar brim with the excitement of freshly gained knowledge and also the innocence of youth. Equally fascinating is “A Cold Freezin’ Night”, which loops a quickly picked acoustic guitar with African-style drums while samples of little kids describing how they’re going to kill someone run over the top. Is it intended as a social commentary with a darker instrumental, or is it more about how silly the harmless yet vivid threats we often made in grade school are today? One thing you can count on with The Books is that they’re not going to tell you what to think or how to think it, but instead like the audio samples they piece together, there’s more than one right answer. Of course that’s not always the case. One listen to “The Story of Hip-Hop” tells you virtually all you need to know, with an old man telling a children’s story about a jumping bunny rabbit backed by a beat that might work well in a rap track. It’d be pretty funny if it weren’t so on the nose.
    Recommended tracks to download…..”On The Lam”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Aphex Twin, Microphones, Squarepusher,

    The Gaslight Anthem new album entitled “American Slang”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The follow-up to breakthrough second album, ‘The ’59 Sound’, ‘American Slang’ should further propel The Gaslight Anthem into the limelight. Full of trademark late night romanticism and upbeat downheartedness, it’s less immediate than previous material, but nevertheless absorbs the magic of the world, distilling it into ten slices of trembling, impassioned rock ‘n’ roll. The fevered dreams of ‘Orphans’, the soulful swing of ‘The Diamond Church Street Choir’ and the abject nostalgia of ‘We Did It When We Were Young’ meld the band’s classic influences and punk upbringing to create a sublime third effort bursting with broken-hearted, wide-eyed wonder..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Sam Cooke
  • New Music June 2010

    Jun 26 2010, 18h52

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash July 2010

    Link to Clash Website

    Random Recommended Albums

    Fol Chen new album entitled “Part II:The New December”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Recorded live in the studio, the quartet have expanded their tempo and rhythmic portfolio while third track ‘Latin America’ boasts an almost pop chart friendly chorus (minus vocals). Also still in place is their frenetic rushes of sonic trickery, but most notably the band have relaxed a little and even got a little funky.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Joanna Newsom, Yo La Tengo, Dirty Projectors

    Hot Hot Heat new album entitled “Future Breeds”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Hot Hot Heat's stock hasn't been on the upswing lately. There was a time, somewhere in the middle of the last decade, where their albums were landing in the Top 50, their singles burrowed themselves into the modern rock charts, and in general, found the band itself in the midst of the indie-stream surge along with Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie. Now, in 2010, the band is poised to follow up what is easily their most maligned work yet, Happiness Ltd., the general lukewarm response of which may or may not explain their current absence of a major label deal. Future Breeds is, unsurprisingly, another slab of raucous, ridiculously catchy, guitar-driven alt-rock, with a few brushes of electronic dance and rockabilly swag to keep your feet moving. The record plays at one tempo, and seemingly encompasses one theme throughout; that doesn't really lend itself to repeat listens, but it does speak for the group's indisputable pop-writing sensibilities. No rock band does jaunty quite like Hot Hot Heat these days, and though lack of public awareness and indie label Dangerbird's meager marketing power might prevent it, tracks like "Implosionatic" and "Zero Results" deserve to tear up rock radio like Hot Hot Heat hits before them. Future Breeds is also remarkably well-produced, which is a little surprising considering this is the first time the band is handling knob-twisting duties all by themselves. In accordance with their frolicsome demeanor, they crank up all of their instruments to a near skull-invading level. The snare drum in particular sounds like it could knock over buildings. The album does a good job of reminding the listeners why they were Hot Hot Heat fans in the first place; it captures the essence of the band's catalogue and uses it as fuel for newer ideas, and that's a pretty good achievement for any album. The problem here, unfortunately, is that Future Breeds is 12 tracks long, and by the eighth cut, "Jedidiah," you've already heard everything the band has to offer sonically, and then some. The songs blend together in a rather blatant way, and that really doesn't do the album's coherency any favors; despite their best efforts, Hot Hot Heat still hasn't crafted an "album" yet, only a decent collection of songs. That said, the songs here are built for live-show sing-alongs and are entirely easy to digest; you know, just like fun rock n' roll should be.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Tokyo Police Club, The Sunshine Underground

    Kele new album entitled “The Boxer”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “When Bloc Party forayed into the world of dance music it often felt like something was lacking, a reluctance to fully commit perhaps. Any suggestion that lead singer Kele Okereke may have been responsible however are immediately dismissed within seconds of his solo record ‘The Boxer’ as hi-NRG rhythms and sweet syncopated beats propel themselves skywards. Moving to Berlin and immersing himself in the underground dance culture has benefited Kele greatly, as has teaming up with producers XXXChange and Hudson Mohawke. Together they create a combination of glossy electro and wobbly two-step hitting euphoric heights with the glorious ‘On The Lam’.”
    Recommended tracks to download…..”On The Lam”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Hot Chip, T Spank Rock, T2, Wookie

    Konono No.1 new album entitled “Assume Crash Position"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Total Life Forever’ is a massive leap forward for the band. The music writhes with a renewed ambition, capable of moving from near ambient strains of electronica to propulsive African funk in a drum break. Shifting from their 2D debut album, ‘Total Life Forever’ is a three-dimensional triumph.…”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Talking Heads, Kasai Allstars, Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou.

    Lorn new album entitled “Nothing Else"
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Lorn lives in the Middle of Nowhere, Illinois. Why does this matter? Because ‘til now Brainfeeder hasn’t worked with an artist without some roots in Los Angeles, home of label lynchpin and sonic tapestry weaver extraordinaire Flying Lotus. Think Dischord and DC, Constellation and Montreal – at their beginnings stables for locals to filter their art through; now, both are essential threads sewn tight through the fabric of the global alternative music community. Too soon to suggest Brainfeeder will go the same way? Not on the evidence served hot by Nothing Else. As a hot album this most certainly is – hot in the sense of being so very now, in the wake of the stutter-beat pigeonhole-eschewing masterpieces presented by FlyLo and his many almost-there-peers (brethren for the sake of an easy parallel); and in terms of just how caustic some of these compositions are on the synapses. If the heat isn’t felt by the close of Bretagne, then Automaton will set that unlikely situation straight. How best to convey just how the track collapses the canals, smashes up the inside of the skull, and then disappears into the dark trailing bloody, broken remains behind it? Without Actual Physical Violence: a conundrum fit for a comic book villain in too-tight tights. Be sure to clench everything. It is one of a handful of numbers here that treads ground also occupied by King Cannibal, so far as gut-busting, knuckle-whitening bass goes; through the right speaker set-up it, as well as the twin Voids and the ironically titled Greatest Silence, will threaten the very foundations of whatever basement/bedsit/black hole it’s cranked out from within. The tracks that pop and fizz, spit and bubble are closer in keeping with the dubstep world’s more visible protagonists, each detached vocal bringing Lorn closer to a commercial centre certain to earn pounds as well as plaudits. But this man is no Starkey, no Benga, and certainly no Rusko – good-time vibes are conspicuous by their absence, and the prevalent vibe is one of peculiar melancholy. Whenever the otherwise pervading menace subsides, anyway. Take Army of Fear – though set to a military percussive motif that’s reminiscent of a thousand rap backing tracks, the keys emanate a pain unique to the darker corners of contemporary electronica. Another couple of out-of-towners like Lorn, and Brainfeeder will have itself quite the army of aural assailants ready to invade territories anew..”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Dr Strangeloop, Poxxe, Offshore.

    Roky Erickson with Okkervil River album entitled “True Love Casts Out Evil”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Few people have walked a harder road than Roky Erickson and survived. Founder of the groundbreaking 1960s psychedelic band 13th Floor Elevators, Erickson fell into a spiral of drug and legal problems that culminated when he was committed to a hospital for the criminally insane. Even after his release, Erickson’s mental state was fragile, and his most productive post-Elevators period was full of songs about demons and monsters; he also generated a notarized affidavit certifying that he was a Martian. Nearly a quarter-century of hermitage followed. But in recent years, Erickson has rebounded, playing music, touring, and at last recording his first new album in 15 years, True Love Cast Out All Evil. It’s a triumph merely that this album exists, but True Love’s musical richness goes beyond what could reasonably have been expected from even a resurgent Roky. A big part of that is due to producer Will Sheff, who backs Erickson along with his band, Okkervil River. Sheff’s role was necessarily more than just turning some knobs; he’s helping curate Erickson’s legacy. Given a huge backlog of unrecorded songs, many going back 40 years, Sheff wisely focused on Erickson’s most spiritual and personal material, like the beatific title track and the sad lament of “Goodbye Sweet Dreams.” Gently philosophical and wistful, True Love reveals Erickson as a songwriter of resonant emotional depth—something all too easily overshadowed by his bizarre biography, not to mention his penchant for writing about fanged devils and acid trips. Erickson’s dynamic, soulful voice, always his greatest musical asset, has lost little of its power. Equally at home on the wistfully romantic “Birds’d Crash” and the hard-rocking firestorm of the angry, raucous “John Lawman,” that voice is the passionate heart of True Love, and rightly so. Not unlike Bob Dylan’s Time Out Of Mind, this is an album by a grizzled veteran of rock’s rougher roads who proves in his late career that he still has great work in him. Perhaps even better, Erickson sounds remarkably confident and optimistic; for all the tumult of his life, he’s happy to be living it. “
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Flaming Lips, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan

    Robert Hood new album entitled “Omega”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Omega is a concept album of sorts from Robert Hood, the “godfather of minimal” and a founder member of the shadowy Underground Resistance, the political wing of Detroit's electronic music scene, of which he was appointed Minister of Information. In the vein of fellow former UR member Jeff Mills' groundbreaking project in which he wrote his own re-imagined soundtrack to Fritz Lang's dystopian vision Metropolis, Hood has based his latest digital excursion on The Omega Man, the 1971 sci-fi classic starring Charlton Heston, which in turn was based on Richard Matheson's 1954 novel I Am Legend (the legacy of which is unfortunately tainted by a more recent, woefully substandard vehicle for Will Smith). Like Metropolis, it is also something of an unsettling version of the future, but one devastated by science unleashed, biological war and populated by marauding psychotic survivors, something that Hood is mindful of in using the film as inspiration (it is not strictly a soundtrack) for his latest work. “It’s definitely metaphoric,” he says, “and if we don't heed the signs, this is where we'll end up. We live in a society where we just consume. We just take.” As inspiration, it has proved valuable. From the eerie layered vocals of opening track Alpha (The Beginning) and the glitchy, ambient electronics of The Plague (Cleansing Maneuvers), Hood's scene is evocatively set. Towns That Disappeared Completely introduces a throbbing 4/4, punctuated with a stabbing synth. Alpha is firmer still, industrial and threatening, machine music and evidence of his deft skill in making hypnotic minimalism captivating. Think Fast is funky and flowing, while Are You God? pulses before building to a clattering, almost arrhythmic crescendo. The Family Watches and War in the Streets are on the surface chugging, stripped-down club tracks offered substance by Hood's sinister subject matter. Saved By the Fire and The Wheels of Escape twist layers of bleeps and bizarre effects over urgent, pulsating percussion, while the charging, hypnotic synths of album closer Omega (End of Times) are genuinely unsettling. In affording his stripped, mesmerising minimalism a jarring, apocalyptic context, so it becomes all the more engrossing.
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Jeff Mills, Carl Craig

    Stornoway new album entitled “Beachcombers’s Windmill”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Nobody does polite indie pop quite like the British. Think Orange Juice, The Pale Fountains, The Bluetones, and you’re but a major 7th away from Stornoway. That said, it’s pretty obvious from their singles to date – not least 'Zorbing' – that these Oxford-based strummers are a bit beyond the ordinary, and 'Beachcomber’s Windowsill' puts that point in bold, italicises and underlines it. Brian Briggs’ West Midlands lilt adds sincerity to these tales of restlessness and frustrated love, each played out against an uncluttered yet busy jazz-folk soundtrack that Stuart Murdoch would kill for. Being ‘nice’ has rarely sounded better.” Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Pale Fountains, Laura Marling, Pete and the Pirates
    [url=http:/ www.myspace.com/stornoway]http:/ www.myspace.com/stornoway

    The Drums new album entitled “The Drums”
    (Rated at 8/10)CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as ” It’s so easy to hate The Drums they may as well fire their own shots into the barrel. With good looks and a major record deal you could dismiss these Florida boys as nothing more than a construct, an affected mirage designed to give people what they want. A cynical listen to The Drums’ self-titled debut album however is one that will deny you the many gems on offer. Away from the media powered hyperbole, what The Drums are, in essence, is a group of Anglophiles mining the back catalogue of some of the best record labels of the past thirty years. From Factory to Sarah through to Rough Trade, ‘The Drums’ is a nostalgic roller-coaster ride through the annals of indie past. The last band to do this hailed from Las Vegas, called themselves The Killers and went on to become one of the biggest bands of the past decade. Much like Brandon Flowers et al, The Drums understand that theatricality and song-craft make for perfect bed fellows and it is lead singer Jonathan Pierce who makes this album shine, punctuating his band mates’ garage riffs with undeniable choruses delivered with a sentiment that is hard to fake. ‘Me And The Moon’, ‘Book Of Stories’ and ‘Best Friend’ all display The Drums’ knack of writing a brain residing melody, however it is ‘Forever And Ever Amen’ that is The Drums’ finest moment. In four minutes they capture a teenage lust for romance, marrying it to the soundtrack of every great John Hughes movie you’ve ever seen. It might sound like Robert Smith seducing Morrissey but it’s possibly the best pop song of 2010.
    The Drums don’t wear their influences on their sleeve as much as have them tattooed across their foreheads, and the tinny guitars and production sees the album run out of steam towards its ending. However, any affectations the band have only come from spending years studying their vinyl from thousands of miles across the Atlantic. What The Drums lack in originality and authenticity they make up for with some of the purest moments of fun and summertime joy this side of the next Eighties revival.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Organ, The Boyfriends, The Field Mice

    Tobacco new album entitled “Maniac Meat”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “When analog mad scientist Tom Sec drops records with his buddies in Black Moth Super Rainbow, they are usually fun affairs. Sure, it’s the kind of fun where giant candy flowers are dripping out of the walls…but fun nonetheless. When Sec is running music under the banner of his alter-ego Tobacco (named after a character from Troma Film’s Redneck Zombies) you can still expect a healthy dose of mindfuckery, but of a decidedly more ominous nature. The follow-up to 2008’s Fucked Up Friends, the likewise colorfully titled Maniac Meat will not disappoint fans of Sec’s particular fusion of dirty psyche and thinking-man’s tweak. The lush synths and ethereal vocoder of BMSR are still there, but twisted and buried beneath bombastic beats, paranoid arpeggios and an ambiance both more cluttered and darker. Album highlight “Sweatmother” doesn’t shatter the candy-colored lens that most of Sec’s material has been presented through, but its big bounce and rushy atmosphere are threatening enough that you’re just waiting for the first cracks to show. Like Tobacco’s debut, much of this album leans heavy on hip-hop, giving Maniac Meat a propulsion missing from BMSR. And where Fucked Up Friends had Aesop Rock dropping in for the paranoid ride, a surprising appearance from Beck on “Fresh Hex” and “Grape Aerosmith” certainly doesn’t detract from the overall trippiness.”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Black Moth Super Rainbow, Themselves, Polyphonic Spree
  • New Music May 2010

    Mai 23 2010, 17h49

    I'm planning to use this Journal Entry to log all the new interesting bands/music I come across in the media/radio etc to research at a later time. If anybody has an pointers or advice on tracks/albums/bands please do let me know or make a comment.

    Clash June 2010


    Random Recommended Albums

    Booka Shade new album entitled “More!”
    (Rated at 8/10)CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as ” Moving from the bass-heavy production of sophomore ‘Movements’, ‘More!’ fleshes out its minimal skeleton with warm, house swathes (‘Scaramanga’) more reminiscent of Balearic sunsets than dark, techno dungeons. This album might not carry the sub-woof weight of its predecessor but it carries the icy menace of producers at the peak of their powers. Cooler than a liquid nitrogen drip..”
    Recommended tracks to download…..”October”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Trent Moeller, Gui Boratto, Richard Villalobos

    Broken Social Scene new album entitled “Forgiveness Rock Record"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The multi-headed beast that is Toronto collective Broken Social Scene has produced some of the great city's finer moments over the last decade, and provided a home from home for the likes of Leslie Feist and Metric's Emily Haines. Both feature here on the band's fourth proper record (solo LPs by Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning carried BSS branding) alongside Pavement's Spiral Stairs, DFA1979's Sebastien Grainger and lots of others. This crowdsourcing works, though. There's nary a dud here, and, given studious listening, the layers and twitches of the album reveal themselves, particularly in Art House Director, a tale of a struggling film set to a gloriously punchy chorus. Then there's the Eno-like instrumental Meet Me in the Basement which sounds like a call to arms for a certain type of pallid T-shirt-wearing music fan. It's fantastic, as is so much of Forgiveness Rock Record, a collation of so many talents that it's practically bursting at the seams.”
    Recommended track to download…..”Theme From Cheers”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Do Make Say Think, Animal Collective, Apostle of Hustle.

    Flying Lotus new album entitled “Cosmogramma”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “An album that lives and breathes in-between its many layers, 'Cosmogramma' reveals something new upon every listen with guest star Thom Yorke joining the space race alongside Outkast collaborator Miguel Atwood- Ferguson. Dense and obtuse it may be but those who follow this most intense sonic explorer will be rewarded the greatest.”
    Recommended track to download…..”News”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The Gaslamp Killer, Dam Mantle

    Foals new album entitled “Total Life Forever"
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “‘Total Life Forever’ is a massive leap forward for the band. The music writhes with a renewed ambition, capable of moving from near ambient strains of electronica to propulsive African funk in a drum break. Shifting from their 2D debut album, ‘Total Life Forever’ is a three-dimensional triumph.…”
    Recommended track to download…..”ilanders”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Talking Heads, Fela Kuti, Bloc Party.

    Future Islands new album entitled “In Evening Air”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “The deal-breaker for some may be Samuel Herring’s vocal delivery: you imagine the band to harbour a certain Anglophilia, or at least have a New Order album or six lying around, but his plummy croon (especially forceful on opening track Walking Through That Door) could be heard as overly affected. Conversely, though, it’s this dandified persona that legitimises lyrics like “When he was young he had a dream / To be a star of the movie screen” (from the propulsive organ drone of Swept Aside). In creating a work which pretty much unfailingly sounds like it could have been made 25 years ago, Future Islands have rejected a lot of current sonic trends – only for their sound to land fashionable-side-up anyway. The tunes are the thing, of course, and the tunes are good.
    Recommended track to download…..”News”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. The xx,
    Wave Machines
    , The Whitest Boy Alive

    Holy Fuck new album entitled “Latin”
    (Rated at 8/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Recorded live in the studio, the quartet have expanded their tempo and rhythmic portfolio while third track ‘Latin America’ boasts an almost pop chart friendly chorus (minus vocals). Also still in place is their frenetic rushes of sonic trickery, but most notably the band have relaxed a little and even got a little funky.”
    Recommended track to download…..”Slow Slow Stop”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Battles, Vitalic, Crystal Castles

    LCD Soundsystem new album entitled “This Is Happening”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “Suffused with an indefinable sense of melancholy, the likes of ‘I Can Change’, ‘Home’ and ‘Dance Yrself Clean’ instil the rubbery electro with a tangible soul - whilst ‘Drunk Girls’ delivers a giddy hit of bony post-punk. As farewells go, this is proper fond. Sound of gold!”
    Recommended tracks to download…..”The Keeper”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Hot Chip, The Rapture, Interpol

    Meursault new album entitled “All Creature Will Make Merry”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “The opening salvo of Payday and Crank Resolutions’ sets off promisingly, building on a whirl of keys which accelerates alongside Neil Pennycook’s shivering cries. But from here the record wallows in folky toils – like Weather and One Day This’ll All Be Fields – that, although charming in tone, lack the atmospheric glow of their live outings – a glitch which owes a lot to the album’s frustratingly hazy production.”
    Recommended tracks to download…..”Pariah”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Frightened Rabbit, Rob St. John, Withered Hand

    Sleepy Sun new album entitled “Fever”
    (Rated at 9/10) CLASH RECOMMENDS
    Described as “It won’t come as a surprise, then, that the band’s second album, Fever, has built on the immense, psychedelic promise of its predecessor and delivers with an equally panoramic somnolence. Inspired by the undulating hills of Sierra Gold Country and the sunshine climes of California, it’s an album draped in a languid, rolling spirituality that’s as prone to weave and wander as it’s capable of splitting the sky in two with an amplified thunder crack.
    Recommended track to download…..”News”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Doves, wooden ships, Oneida, Pontiak

    The National new album entitled High Violet”
    (Rated at 6/10)
    Described as “Coming on like Nick Cave with a mild headache, The National are about as gloomy and downtrodden as indie bands pretty much get. But despite a sincere lack of happy hardcore bangers or light-relief comedy skits, ‘High Violet’ is a tight, no-nonsense follow-up to 2007’s critically acclaimed ‘Boxer”
    Recommended track to download…..”These Winds”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Okkervil River, Editors

    Walls new album entitled “Walls”
    (Rated at 7/10)
    Described as “Walls - half Italian noisenik Banjo Or Freakout, half London remix team Allez-Allez - have created an album that is both an evolutionary step from the looped soundscapes of Panda Bear and the natural conclusion of the Balearic extremes of the disco revival; sparse yet enveloping, progressive yet constantly emotive.
    Is it ambient? Space-rock? Or techno? Definition is futile - bathe instead in these ebbing waters and forget all you know..”
    Recommended track to download…..”Empire Ants”
    Dig it? Dig Deeper….. Banjo Or Freakout, allez-allez, Caribou