Tuesday, 30 April 2013

New music: 'Second Summer (RAC and Ben Aqua remixes) by Yacht

Here's your chance to grab a couple of free remixes of the latest single by Yacht, courtesy of the ever-lovely DFA Records. The two mixes are quite different, personally I prefer the RAC one but they're both worth a listen and they suit the sunny weather vibe.

New music: 'Duga-3' by Evian Christ

This was one of the things that I picked up to purchase on Record Store Day, but then had to put back when I realised how much I was potentially going to spend. Happily, young Mr. Christ has uploaded the 20 minute track to Soundcloud, and also made it available to download via Mediafire (click here). It's a darkly introspective piece that would perhaps work as the soundtrack to an art installation - have a listen and see what you make of it.

Saturday, 27 April 2013

Recommended music: 'Elemental Themes (DJ Cull's Music Non Stop Mix) by Chrome Canyon

Regular readers will know how much I live 'Elemental Themes', and the remix album that came out this year gave some new perspectives on some of the tracks. It also gave me the inspiration for this - a non-stop mix of my favourite bits from both versions of the record, with some bits of film dialogue thrown in for good measure. Have a listen below (the download option is disabled for now, unless Morgan or Stones Throw give me the nod to set it free on the world). I had great fun making this - I hope you have as much fun listening to it.

Friday, 26 April 2013

New music: 'Man I Need (white label version)' by Jagwar Ma

On which Jagwar Ma continue their mission to prove how good they are at making really good, reeaally long songs. This one clocks in at nine and a half minutes - the second half is pretty much a remix of the first half, but it works really well. If their album (Howlin') is going to be full of songs as good (and as long) as this then we're in for a treat - it's out on June 10th.

New music: 'Pyramid (Atoms For Peace Rmx 1)' by Four Tet

Four Tet seemed pretty excited about this when he posted it onto the internet last night, and it's easy to see why. Thom Yorke has taken the original (which to be honest was never my favourite track from 'Pink') and made it several shades darker. The result is something that feels more digital than the original - some of the analogue warmth has been removed and replaced with a digital chill. Play it a few times and you'll soon fall under its spell - especially the bit a couple of minutes before the end where Thom throws in a few of his own vocals. Listen here:

PS The fact that this is called 'Rmx1' hopefully implies that there are more on the way...

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Recommended music: 'Kool Herc: Fertile Crescent' by Homeboy Sandman

Eight tracks of unashamedly old-school hip-hop from the intellectual MC from Queens. Named after, and with the blessing of, one of hip-hop's originators, this is a back-to basics homage to Sandman's inspirations.

Opener 'My Brothers' is one of the strongest cuts here, with its killer vocal sample and racial tolerance lyrics flow. 'Lonely People' recasts Eleanor Rigby as a fame-hungry wannabe with no real friends, while 'Moon' tells tales of lost love and failed relationships.

On 'Men Are Mortal' the sample stakes are raised with possibly the best Shirley Bassey sample ever committed to vinyl - Kanye would've been proud of this one. As Shirley warbles that "men are mere mortals" Sandman spits out fast-paced lyrics comparing himself to Orson Welles, a burning bush and a citadel. The quality level stays high for the closing two tracks - 'Peace and Love' has got a great guitar line and a (possibly Greek?) euro-chorus, and 'I' shuts things down with some Tijuana brass vibes.

This is another track that came to me via the Stones Throw drip.fm subscription - I've been on this for about a year now and I don't ink there's been a duff release, so check it out here and join in.

You can listen to a bonus cut from the album below.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'Full Moon' by Bike For Three!

If you're not familiar with Bike For Three, they're a duo consisting of Canadian rapper Rich Terfry (a.k.a. Buck 65) and Belgian electronicist Joelle Phuong Minh Le (who records as Greetings From Tuskan). In 2009 they put out a great album called 'More Heart Than Brains' (which I loved) but things have been quite from them for a while.

Until now that is, as tonight they've unleashed 'Full Moon' as a 'name your price' i.e. free download. The vocals are a joint effort from the two this time, while the music is a pulsing, throbbing, eurobeat pleasure. Hopefully this signals the return of the pair and a new album on the way - listen and download the track below.

Choice Cuts #11 2013

Another blockbusting ball-breaking ballistic selection of new music to inform and entertain you. Just click on the big pointy 'Play' button above to listen, here's the tracklisting:

  1. Homeboy Sandman - My Brothers
  2. Tame Impala - Mind Mischief (Ducktails Remix)
  3. Poliça - Tiff (feat. Justin Vernon)
  4. The Child of Lov - Give Me
  5. Vondelpark - California Analog Dream (Factory Floor Remix)
  6. Chrome Canyon - Branches (Gavin Russom Remix)
  7. Gold Panda - Brazil
  8. Clark - As The Circle Closes
  9. East India Youth - Heaven, How Long (Oh The Guilt Remix)
  10. Public Service Broadcasting - New Dimensions In Sound
  11. Jonwayne - Passing Fancies

New music: 'Mexico' by Traams

One of the newest signings to Fat Cat Records, Traams hail from Chichester, West Sussex and have been together for nearly two years. Their spiky, post-punk tunes have recently been enlivened by production duties by MJ from Hookworms, resulting in 'Mexico'. A healthy cocktail of Wire and Franz Ferdinand, with a dash of Can and a 'fuck you' attitude, it's quite possibly the most boisterous and energetic song you'll hear all day.

'Mexico' is taken from the forthcoming 'Ladders EP', and while you're waiting for that to appear you ccan catch the band supporting Parquet Courts at the 100 Club on May 19th, or at The Shacklewell Arms on June 28th supporting Electric Moon.

Click here to listen to and download 'Mexico' here.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Recommended music: 'Circles Remixed' by Moon Duo

From the moment that the needle touches the vinyl and an eerie space noise starts to emerge, you know that this is going to be a good record. Pressed especially for Record Store Day 2013 by Souterrain Transmissions and limited to 1,000 copies, the album features eight of the original nine tracks from 'Circles', each remixed by a different artist. And despite the fact that the mixes have been done in isolation and are pretty diverse in styles the album really works as one piece and gives a totally different perspective. Side 2 has definitely got the more experimental mixes on it  (from Sun Araw and Eric Copeland (Black Dice)) but there's nothing too 'challenging' on here.

If you can still find one in your local record emporium then snap it up quickly. It's definitely one of the best things I bought on Saturday (click here for my report on the day and full list of purchases) so grab it while you can. Here's the full tracklisting, after which you can download (for free!) possibly the best track on the album, the White Rainbow mix of 'Trails'.

  1. Free Action - Tom Furse (of The Horrors) mix
  2. Trails - White Rainbow Trail Blazer edition
  3. Sleepwalker - Zombie Zombie mix
  4. I Been Gone - Life Coach mix
  5. I Can See - K-X-P live mix
  6. Ville Cranian (Circles) - Sun Araw mix
  7. Sparks - Eric Copeland mix
  8. Rolling Out - Umberto mix

Recommended music: The Twilight Sad / Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat Record Store Day 2013 7"

The second single from Saturday to feature Scottish geniuses Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat, this one was released on Fat Cat Records and features two cover versions. First off The Twilight Sad put their stamp on '(If You) Keep Me In Your Heart' from the excellent Wells & Moffat album 'Everything's Getting Older'. The in return Wells & Moffat do 'Alphabet'  from last year's Twilight Sad album 'No One Can Ever Know'. Like most Record Store Day releases the single was limited (to 500 copies) and Fat Cat get bonus points from me for individually numbering each copy (mine is #338).

If you missed out on all the fun on Saturday (you know, queueing at 6.30 in the morning, fighting your way to the racks only to find that the thing you REALLY wanted had already gone) then you can listen to the both sides of the single below.

Recommended music: Mogwai / Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat Record Store Day 2013 7"

This is definitely one of the best things that I bought on Saturday from Rough Trade East. Aidan Moffat (in his L.Pierre guise) remixes 'Special N' from Mogwai's current album, the soundtrack to the French TV show Les Revenants. In return Plasmatron from Mogwai casts his magic of 'The Copper Top', one of the best tracks from Wells & Moffat's 'Everything's Getting Older' album. It gets bonus points from me for being pressed on white vinyl too.

If you didn't join a queue outside a record shop on Saturday then it's unlikely that you'll be able to get one of these, but you can listen to the two tracks below, and if you haven't already then you should buy both of the albums that the originals came from.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Record Store Day 2013

Another year, another unfeasibly early train ride into London to visit the vinyl Mecca that is Rough Trade East (having first had to scrape the ice off the car, despite the fact that it's April). The queue was definitely longer at 6.30 than it was last year, meaning that we didn't get straight in at 8 o'clock, but our hands were in reach of the record racks by about 8.25, and they weren't letting too many people in at once so it was pretty calm inside. Unfortunately a couple of things I wanted had already gone (the Mercury Rev album and the Brian Eno x Nicolas Jaar x Grizzly Bear 12") but I got pretty much everything else I wanted (see the list below for my successful purchases).

Emerging from Rough Trade about 9.45 I headed down to Mother Gallery for the Secret 7s sale, not to buy anything but just to see what was around. There was another queue to get in and quite a lot had gone by the time I was in, but it seemed like a fun event to raises money for Art Against Knives.

A spot of brunch followed, and then I returned to Rough Trade (where I'm sat writing this) to watch some of the music. So far I've seen sets from Daniel Avery and then Sam Willis (Walls), and I'll be watching Public Service Broadcasting before I head home. I'll stick some pictures onto this post later but in the meantime here's a list of what I got:

  1. Pulp x Soulwax - After You 12"
  2. Ghostpoet - Meltdown 10"
  3. Moon Duo - Circles Remixed 12"album
  4. Primal Scream - I Want You 12"
  5. Toy x The Horrors - Motoring / Moving Further Away 12"
  6. Sinkane - Jeepers Creepers 12"
  7. Beak> - 0898 / Welcome To The Machine 10"
  8. The Wedding Present - 4 Lieder EP 10"
  9. Factory Records - Communications vol. 2 10"
  10. Elliott Smith - Either/Or 7"
  11. Public Service Broadcasting - Signal 30 7"
  12. Paul Weller - Flame Out 7"
  13. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Animal X picture 7"
  14. Moby & Mark Lanegan - The Lonely Night 7"
  15. The Twilight Sad / Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat - split 7"
  16. Mogwai / Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat - split 7"
Here's some pictures of the day:

RSD13 - the queue at Rough Trade 6.30am (part 1)
RSD13 - the queue at Rough Trade 6.30am (part 2)
Daniel Avery DJ'ing amongst the foliage
Sam Willis (Walls)
Public Service Broadcasting

Friday, 19 April 2013

Live - review and pictures: British Sea Power - Shepherd's Bush Empire, London 17/4/13

As you might know, British Sea Power are playing two sets each night on their current tour, with a support band in between. The first set is not exactly acoustic, but features quieter and rarer tracks as a gentle way to ease into the evening.

For the Shepherd's Bush show I was pleased that they'd dropped 'Hail Holy Queen' which they'd played on some previous shows, but is my least favourite track from 'Machineries Of Joy'. Instead we got five great tracks, including a track from 'Man of Aran', a 'Remember Me' B-side and my second favourite from the new album. Here's the setlist for the first part of the show:

  1. The Land Beyond
  2. Come Wander With Me
  3. Blackout
  4. Salty Water
  5. What You Need The Most

Sandwiched between the two BSP sets were hipster favourites Toy. With their long fringes and equally long songs they make a goodly noise, even if all of their songs seems to follow the same formula - 3 or 4 minutes of singing followed by a 5 minute instrumental freakout.

The tale of two sets then turned into a tale of two bears as BSP commenced the main part of the show. There was an early appearance for the big bedraggled brown bear (almost 9 years to the day since I first saw the band, and the bear, in the same venue). An opening salvo of 'Remember Me' and 'Apologies...', followed by new track 'K Hole' (which sounded much better live) set the scene for a great mix of hits, favourites and newbies.

There weren't that many visuals, but the bird footage for 'The Great Skua' was particularly effective. There's something about British Sea Power, especially seeing them live, that makes you feel somehow grounded to the Earth (in a good way) - the songs, the visuals, the performance all come together to create something that feels bigger than its parts, an almost primal energy emerges and you feel connected to the elements. God knows what would happen if they ever played in the middle of Stonehenge...anyway, it wasn't long before the luxurious new gleaming white polar bear took to the stage, dancing gingerly round Noble.

Despite the evidence to the contrary in this picture, Yan didn't actually sport a pair of antlers during the show - they were on top of the amp and somehow got into the picture.

For the climactic encore we were treated to an outstanding version of 'Lately', complete with mass crowd singing and both bears - I couldn't work out if they were dancing or fighting, but they were having fun anyway.

Noble ended the evening wearing flying goggles and being eaten by a bear - just a standard night out then!

Here's the setlist for the main show:
  1. Remember Me
  2. Apologies To Insect Life
  3. K Hole
  4. Bear
  5. Spring Has Sprung
  6. No Lucifer
  7. Mongk II
  8. When A Warm Wind Blows Through The Grass
  9. Machineries Of Joy
  10. Waving Flags
  11. The Great Skua
  12. Please Stand Up
  13. Radio Goddard
  14. The Spirit Of St. Louis
  15. A Light Above Descending
  16. Carrion
  17. All In It
  18. Loving Animals
  19. Lately

New Band of the Day: Yong Yong

Hailing from Lisbon, Portugal, the due of Rodolfo Brito and Francisco Silva, mine a late-night seam of warped electronics, ambient sounds, effects and loops. The overall effect is a bit like going to sleep with the radio on and drifting in and out of consciousness while the radio slowly re-tunes itself. Their album 'Love' initially appeared towards the end of last year on a C60 cassette, and has since been afforded a digital release.

It's hard to pick out specific tracks or key points as it's very much something that should be listened to as one piece, but there are signposts on the journey - like the bit in 'Loboz' that sounds like Wall-E, or the dialogue on 'Bujumann' about Gandhi and Mother Teresa - that reflect just how trippy the destination is.
In part the lo-fi nature of the recordings and occasional dubby feel reminds me of early Peaking Lights stuff, but really the record inhabits a world of its own. Here are a couple of tracks from it, first off you can download 'Helder' here courtesy of the band themselves - let yourself sink into its repetitive vibe...

Next you can listen to 'Spray', which was the track that first brought them to my attention:

And then there's the final track from the album 'Escarnio Popular', which sounds like an Arabic souk from a sci-fi film:

Rodolfo Brito also occasionally post things on Youtube, here's the latest one that he's put up

Finally from their Soundcloud page, 'Material' appears to be the newest thing they've put out:

Plenty for you to get your teeth into there - enjoy!

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'After You (Soulwax Mix)' by Pulp

Released exclusively on vinyl for Record Store Day (this Saturday) this is every bit as massive as you would hope for. It's pretty much a music lover's wet dream - the long lost Pulp song which emerged unexpectedly over Christmas, having had its knobs twizzled and buttons polished by none other than James Murphy from LCD Soundsystem, gets a make-over from Belgiums Dewaele brothers, thus ensuring that it fits nicely into their DJ sets. This has gone straight to the top of my shopping list for Rough Trade on Saturday.

New music: 'Ability To Gain Access' by Not Waving

New out on Sam Willis from Walls' Ecstatic label, this is the second EP from Alessio Natilizia (who also plays in Walls). A four-track instrumental electronic EP inspired by "80s weird Italian electronic", there's a bit of a 'Kosmisch Musik' vibe to this, with hints of Pink Floyd on the title track, while elsewhere the electronica vibe is undercut with occasional Krautrock elements. As if to back this up the album due to be released on May 20th has a German title, 'Umwelt', and should definitely be one to watch out for.

You can listen to the whole record and grab it for free below.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

New music: 'Warsaw' by Dessa

An advance cut from her album 'Parts of Speech' (out on June 25th on Doomtree Records) this track sees Dessa in full-on fighting mode. Over a forceful electronic track she spits fast-paced lyrics that show she's ready to take no prisoners with this release. Far more articulate than the over-hyped stream of under-talented female rapper that the internet force feeds us, Dessa is the real deal and I fully believe that she "sleeps with both eyes open, standing up" as she claims on this track.

Monday, 15 April 2013

New music: 'Answered (Jon Phonics Remix)' by Kelpe

To accompany the release of Kelpe's new 3-track EP, which is out today on DRUT Records, you can grab this free remix of the title track. It's a bit of a smoother, more flowing version than the original which is definitely worth a quick click of your mouse. Listen / download for free below.

Track of the Day: 'Tiff' by Poliça

5 reasons why this track is better than anything off 'Give You The Ghost', last year's album by Poliça.
  1. It doesn't use that really annoying auto-tune / vocoder effect that, in my opinion, completely ruined the album.
  2. As a result of 1, you can here the loveliness of Channy Leaneagh's voice - even the potty-mouthed bits.
  3. It features the equally lovely Justin Vernon (from Bon Iver)
  4. It sounds like it belongs on 'Relayted', the 2010 album by Gayngs, which is one of my favourite albums from the last few years. This gives me hope that there might be another Gayngs album on the horizon.
  5. It's named after ex-racing driver, ex-Top Gear presenter and current Fifth Gear presenter Tiff Needell
The single is out digitally today from all good online stores. Listen to it below.

PS Number 5 might not be 100% true...

New music: 'Lips Lips Lips (Antlers Remix) by Indians

It's always good when someone you like remixes someone else you like. In this case Darby Cicci (from one of my favourite bands, The Antlers) has remixed a track from Indians 'Somewhere Else' album, which is one of my favourite records so far this year (see review here). The result is this rather woozy take on 'Lips Lips Lips', with snatches of looped and backwards instruments and vocals giving way as a beat appears, matched with a repeated vocal - "the moment it wakes me up, I'm on my way".

Click on the picture below to listen, or right-click to download the track for free.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Recommended music: 'Elemental Themes Remixes' by Chrome Canyon

Regular readers of this blog or my twitter feed will know how much I loved last year's Chrome Canyon album 'Elemental Themes' (you can read my review here). It's a record that I probably would never have heard without the Stones Throw Drip.fm subscription service, so I'll be eternally grateful to them for sending it through.

Now, less than a year later, there's a set of remixes of 5 tracks from the album which breathe new life into it and take the music in some different directions. Probably my favourite of all is the track that opens the album, Gavin Russom's remix of 'Branches' but really, there's not a duff version on here. From Airbird's vocal version of Branches through to Peaking Lights' closer, a great version of 'Chasing The Dead', each remixer brings something different to the party - you only have to listen to the two very different versions of 'Memories of a Scientist' by Saarid and Matthew David that are placed together here to see what diverse sounds you can end up with when you start with the same track.

If I have any complaint at all with this it's that only 5 of the tracks have been remixed - I'd like to hear remixes of everything. If there were 8 or 10 different tracks on here it could almost be approaching the first (and seminal) remix album 'Love and Dancing' by The Human League - in fact with a bit of tweaking the Thomas Barfod remix of 'Carfire of the Highway' could even fit on that record.

You can hear some of the tracks from the album below, and even download the Peaking Lights remix for free.

Recommended music: 'A Soundless Echo' by Sau Poler

From Badalona, on the outskirts of Barcelona, Sau Poler started making music a year ago, and has now released his debut EP via Atomnation. Influenced by electronic artists from various genres (but, as you'll hear in the music, particularly Four Tet) he has created a positive, upbeat sound, with snatched and sampled vocals complimenting the keyboards and percussion.

You can feel the warm, almost Balearic atmosphere on the record - 'Isolated' and 'Rutes' both have that looped Four Tet percussive feel, while 'Reflections' also adds a bit of a Caribou vibe and could have been played at Cafe del Mar any time in the past 25 years. Elsewhere there are hints of John Talabot and Orbital, and the whole EP hangs together really well.

It's another great release from the Dutch label, and this time it's available as a 'name your price' download - you can listen, buy and download it below.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

New Music: 'California Analog Dream (Factory Floor Remix)' by Vondelpark

I must admit to being a bit worried about what this would sound like - the original is one of my favourite tracks so far this year, and Factory Floor aren't exactly well known for their sensitive remixes. As trepidatious as I was, somehow the marriage of the two works. There's not a great deal of the original left apart from the vocals, but it's an interesting take on the track.

For comparison, I've also included the Bullion mix of the track below so you can hear two completely different versions - there's much more of the original in this one but it's still pretty different from the album version. Both tracks are on the single which was released this week on R & S Records.

Track of the Day: 'Jeeper Creeper (PHON.O Rmx feat. Born In Flamez)' by Sinkane

Pretty unrecognisable from the (excellent) original, this brilliant mix by PHON.O will be on the 12" released on April 20th on City Slang. There's a great bassline, additional vocals from Born In Flamez, and the whole thing comes together in a package that will light up the dancefloor. The single will also feature mixes by Benjamin Damage and Africaine808. Check it out below.

New music: 'Moveoutofmyway' by Lapalux feat. ShadowBox

An exclusive new track, not featured on Lapalux's excellent new 'Nostalchic' album. It's a dreamy, ethereal cut, underscored with some crunchy percussion. Grab it below on one of those 'name your own price' (e.g. free) deals.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'Lighthouse (Capsun Remix)' by Iyes

A great mix of a great track from hotly-tipped Brighton band Iyes. Having seen them play at Village Underground a couple of weeks ago I'm confidently predicting big things for them. If you're quick you can grab this remix for free - I think this might actually be the first track of theirs that's become available to download so get on the front foot and download it!

Iyes at Village Underground 26/3/13

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'Sweater Weather (James Lavelle Remix)' by The Neighbourhood

The man from UNKLE has really worked his magic on this track, taking the inclement original and turning it into a warm, deep house track. I hadn't heard The Neighbourhood's first version of this (it's below if you want to compare the two) but Lavelle has turned this into a much bigger animal that he's no doubt dropping into his DJ set at every opportunity. No word yet on where you can get hold of the track so for now you'll just have to listen to it here.

New music: 'Social Cognition' by Fiocz

The second release on Glass Reservoir (read about the first one by Benjamin Shaw here) is another in their series exploring the boundaries between electronic and acoustic sounds.

Constructed on an analogue modular synthesizer, and using field recordings from his work life, home life and surrounding environment, Fiocz has created a stuttering, glitchy record that accurately reflects the paranoia and angst of modern living. Titles like 'Dysphoria' (a state of dissatisfaction, anxiety or restlessness) and 'Drosophila' (a fly used in laboratory studies of genetics) accurately reflect the themes of this record - not so much 'Modern Life Is Rubbish' as 'Modern Life Scares The Crap Out Of Me'. It's one thing being cognisant of your surroundings, but the oppressive air that abounds here seems to imply that maybe knowing the imperfections of toady's world but not being able to change things is a bigger burden than being ignorant.

Not necessarily an easy listen then, but definitely a thought-provoking one. You can watch a taster for the album below, and pre-order it from Glass Reservoir by clicking here.

(TGRR002) Social Cognition - Seq021- from fiocz on Vimeo.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Choice Cuts #10 2013

Another selection of new music for your weekend listening. As usual it's an eclectic mix of genres and styles, so I hope you find something to like in it. Just click on the play button above to listen to it, here are the track details:

  1. Young Dreams - Fog Of War
  2. Substantial - Golden Lady (feat. Steph The Sapphic Songstress)
  3. Har Mar Superstar - Lady, You Shot Me
  4. Steve Mason - Lonely
  5. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Sacrilege
  6. Public Service Broadcasting - Signal 30
  7. Scott & Charlene's Wedding - Gammy Leg
  8. Virginia Wing - Red Sails
  9. Still Corners - Berlin Lovers
  10. Sau Poler - Rutes
  11. Pure X - Crawling Up The Stairs
  12. John Grant - You Don't Have To (Strongroom version)

Track of the Day: 'UK Allstars' by Congo Natty

Congo Natty has been involved in the UK music scene for more than 20 years. Back when he started the was known as the Rebel MC - if you're too young to remember that then this is what his biggest hit with Double Trouble sounded like:

Now he works under the Congo Natty name and will be putting out a great new album in the summer called 'Jungle Revolution'. The lead track from the record is available to download for free below (if you're quick!) and features the cream of British soundsystem culture, including Top Cat, General Levy and Tippa Irie. On top of that it's mixed by the legendary Adrian Sherwood, so you know it's going to have some class. Play it loud!

New music: 'Rutes' by Sao Poler

Out next week on Dutch label Atomnation (who also put out the excellent Weval EP that I reviewed here), this track is taken from the Barcelona-inhabiting producer's debut EP ' A Soundless Echo'. There's more than a hint of Four Tet in the percussive loops and rhythms of this song, which builds nicely with layers of melody and vocals. Listen to it above, or click on the photo below to download the track.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'Berlin Lovers' by Still Corners

Some sparkling new electro-pop from the Sub Pop label. From their second album 'Strange Pleasures' which will be out at the start of May, and full of unashamed '80s influences, this is an effortlessly elegant pop song, straightforward but not simple, short but not too sweet. Listen and download  for free above.

New music: 'Swim and Sleep (Like A Shark) (Lindstrom Remix)' by Unknown Mortal Orchestra

I've loved the original of this track since I first heard it at the end of 2012. This is a very different take on it from Swede Lindstrom, which I must admit I didn't really care for when I first heard it. Stick with it though, and as the track progresses and hits the four minute mark it turns into something really rather good.

Sadly there's no free download on this at the moment, nor any details on where it can be bought, so you'll just have to listen to it on here for now.

Live - in pictures: Sinkane & Young Dreams - Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, London 3/4/13

There were lots of uplifting, upbeat, warm vibes in the air in Hoxton Square tonight.

Young Dreams - Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen, London 3/4/13
First on the bill were Young Dreams from Norway (London's chill must seem positively balmy to them). With classic 3-part harmonies underpinned by a tinge of African rhythms they played a polished set that really engaged the audience. Definitely a band that I'd go and see again next time they're in town.

Young Dreams 3/4/13
Headliners for the night were Sinkane - currently residents of Brooklyn, NY but with roots from around the globe.

Sinkane, London 3/4/13
Ahmed Gallab, Sinkane 3/4/13

Despite a rather patchy sound mix and intermittent problems with Ahmed Gallab's keyboard they put on a good, if rather truncated, show.

With the wind in their sails and maybe some sunshine outdoors at a festival I imagine that they'll be unstoppable.

Sinkane - Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen, London 3/4/13

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

New music: 'Superfood' by Superfood

 Sounding quite a lot like Mansun (check out the videos for 'Stripper Vicar' and 'Taxloss' at the bottom of this page if you don't know who they are) I don't know much about this new band, other than they are currently supporting Tribes. This is the very first track that they've put out, and it's free to download, so stick your email address in the box above, grab it and see what you think.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Track of the Day: 'Meltdown (Squarepusher vs Ghostpoet Version) by Ghostpoet

Further proof that Ghostpoet's new material is set to send him stratospheric. This new version of his excellent new track 'Meltdown' steps up the darkness quota, lending an air of the Far Eastern and mystical, while the keyboards gradually overwhelm the vocals. The new album 'Some Say I So I Say Light' is out on May 6th - maybe he'll win the Mercury Music Prize second time around...

New music: 'Default (Antonionian Version)' by Atoms For Peace

Not hugely different from the original, I have to admit, but then it was a great track to start with. This version just fuzzes everything up a bit, and in the process makes it feel just a little bit warmer and less clinical.

Listen and download for free below.

Recommended music: 'Mars' by Sinkane

This album crept out on DFA Records / City Slang towards the end of 2012, and since then has slowly been building up both critical acclaim and a swelling groundbase of support. It's a real melting pot of a record, as varied as the background of Sinkane founder Ahmed Gallab. He was born in the Sudan, but currently resides in Brooklyn, NYC. His journey from one to the other has taken him from being a hardcore punk in Columbus, Ohio to touring the world as part of such illustrious acts as Yeasayer, Caribou, Born Ruffians and Of Montreal. The records is mostly his own work but there are various guest spots from his friends famous and otherwise, and live the band is expanded to an energetic four-piece.

The only way to pigeon-hole this record is to put it into the slot marked 'good-time party music'. Whatever genre he's playing with, be it '70s jazz (there are hints of Herbie Hancock), African high-life, funk or soul the common thread is that this is upbeat, positive music. There's some great guitar work, loads of varied and technically accomplished drumming and overall this is an album that rarely flags. A high point for me is 'Making Time', which fuses all of the albums elements together and tops them off with a fantastic guitar solo from Twin Shadow's George Lewis Jr. Here's the video for the opening track 'Runnin':

Sinkane - Runnin' (Official Video) from DFA Records on Vimeo.

At the bottom of the page you can listen to the whole album, courtesy of the lovely people at DFA. If you like it (I'm sure you will) make sure you buy it and/or go and see the band live - they're playing all over Europe in April (including a London gig tomorrow night which I'm going to), and the US in May and June.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Choice cuts #9 2013

Another selection of ten top tunes for you to listen to. Just click on the play button above to listen, here are the track details:

  1. Vondelpark - California Analog Dream - from the new album 'Seabed'
  2. Blaenavon - Denim Patches - click here for details
  3. Zomes - Cave Mountain Stream - free download here
  4. Junip - Your Life, Your Call - free download here
  5. Small Black - Free At Dawn 
  6. The Cyclist - Mangel - details here
  7. Anika - I Go To Sleep - details here
  8. Tessela - Hackney Parrot
  9. Mount Kimbie - Made To Stray - free download here
  10. James Holden - Gone Feral - free download here

New music: 'Red Sails' by Virginia Wing

Another great release from the Critical Heights label, who so far haven't out a foot wrong this year.

'Red Sails' is the début release from the band, who've been together for just over a year. Formed in Dalston, and featuring members of a number of other bands (most notably Samuel Pillay from Let's Wrestle) they make a breezy, summery sound that, if you play it loud enough, might just help to usher in the much-delayed Spring. You can listen to the track and download it below - the 7" comes out on May 6th.