Tuesday, 23 November 2010


Memoryhouse have proofed to create some of the most beautiful songs we've heard this year, from first single To the Lighthouse and second Lately (both songs also included in the free to download The Years EP) to the other songs they've been putting out in compilations or that tour only CDR full of instrumentals. When i saw them live though it was slightly disappointing as the addition of a guitar that sometimes rocked too hard for their songs destroyed the atmosphere of these songs mostly based in quiet and delicate ballads that didn't need those guitar riffs at all. Anyway, the new single out on Suicide Squeeze Records doesn't take an approach to their live sound, but more to their previous recordings, although the presence of the guitar is more prominent than on those first tracks, but always as a companion to the songs without overtaking all the power of the songs.
Get the record before is sold out here. It's limited to 750 copies but it's nearly sold out.

Memoryhouse - "Caregiver" from The Tearist on Vimeo.


I was a huge Mogwai fan, back on the days of the first singles, Young Team, Come On Die Young and Rock Action, and those perfect EPs they put out on between. I saw them like 10 times live during those years and it was always a mind blowing experience.
Everything began to change with the release of Happy Songs for Happy People: From the title to the cover everything looked bad from the beginning. Maybe I'm not a happy person but I found the record quite bland and nothing to do with Mogwai at all. The records that came afterwards were not any better in general: Mr Beast was a try to go back to basics, the quiet-noise-quiet pattern they followed in their first releases but although the ingredients were there the final result was far from the anthemic songs the got famous for. Zidane, the OST was better, some beautiful passages that put a bit of hope for further releases but then, The Hawk is Howling proofed us wrong, developing some songs closer to hard rock mannerisms than anything else.
Some months ago, the news that the were going to release their next album for Sub Pop in America put them again on the map. Not sure if the signing for a label can actually affect the final result for an album, even less a label like Sub Pop that doesn't put any pressure in the artistic part of the making of a record but, anyway, it could only be regarded us encouraging news. And now, the first single is available as a free download before the actual physical release that will be in January and will include a non-album B side and a classic Sub Pop singles club style cover. I approached to it with mixed expectations but, after listening to it, I have to say that it's probably the best song they've done in years. Rano Pano, an advance from Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will it's as far from their first songs as it is close: The melody is there, the noise is there but processed in a different way but, what's more important is that the song is good and escapes from the self-plagiarism of the last records, looking for new sounds and ways of expression but being loyal to their name.
I cannot help it but to have hope again and look forward the new album, to be out next February, but I'm also afraid of another deception, even more taking into account the name of the record. Cross your fingers.

Mogwai - Rano Pano.mp3


This is the forth single from Fort Lowell Records, and last for this year, a label from Tucson AZ that specializes in releasing singles from local bands. If you still don't know it, they've put out records by Young Mothers, ...Music Video?, Wet & Reckless / Tracy Shedd and now Dead Western Plains, all of them still available on their website.
This is the Dead Western Plains debut and it sounds really elaborated for a first record. The production is rich on details and you can get the sensation that many hours have been invested in getting the final result. With complex melody lines and, although they don't have an obvious chorus, both songs have the common element that, with quite an abstract structure they manage to have a catchy organ arrangement that works as glue for all the different parts of the songs.
The songs sound big, hymn-like and kaleidoscopic, mixing psychedelia, electronic sounds and pop. They mention Arcade Fire, Animal Collective or Caribou as references, and I can definitely see those in these songs, although not individually, but very well mixed and assumed.

Dead Western Plains - Alta.mp3

Friday, 19 November 2010


Seapony's first ever physical release is just been put out by Double Denim Records, a UK label that also released Blackbird Blackbird's Pure. Seapony are from Seattle but far from getting inspiration to that city's music background they get closer to the British sound of 80s bands like The Pastels, Heavenly or TBoldhe Vaselines, although I've also read comparisons with Best Coast around the blogs. Actually, the first time you hear Dreaming, one of the three songs on the single, it sounds so familiar you may think you've heard it before. The guitar riff and the melody are so simple it looks impossible nobody has already done it.
You can also visit their bandcamp and download their first virtual EP for free here.

Seapony - Dreaming.mp3

Wednesday, 17 November 2010


Lately there's been a huge amount of low profile bands whose names consist on symbols or a combination of symbols and letters. Most of them they share a love for dark sounds, scary synths and heavily processed vocals and they are influenced by dark dubstep and hip hop as much as they are by gothic and post punk sounds. After the rise of Salem, Burial or even Fever Ray in the last years the door's been open for this type of effects and many projects are flirting with a kind of music would perfectly suit the goriest and darker of the films and scare the bravest of the mums.
GR†LL GR†LL is yet another band who's just released a CDR on Disaro, a record label whose bands include another hieroglyphical bands such as , ✝ NO VIRGIN ✝ or †‡† and which logo may you think it's more a cult than a record label. Pretty scary everything. GR†LL GR†LL's music is not for everybody's ears but you'll probably find it interesting at least if you've been loving Salem's LP. The artifact even contains a Nirvana cover more suitable for Doom lovers than grunge fans.

Grll Grll - sl0wdancing.mp3

Sunday, 14 November 2010


I talked about Games a while ago when they released their 7' Everything is Working. I also mentioned that they were preparing a new EP to come out soon and that EP was already out this last week and it's slightly surprising if the only material you ever heard from them is that single. The 6 track EP from this Oneohtrix Point Never affiliate still shares the sample copy / paste methodology of those two songs but escapes from the bedroom ambient electronica into Italo influenced songs, most of them with vocals and closer to conventional (although not foreseeable) electronic pop songs. The general sound is quite retro, taking you back to those 80s Summer nights in beach town discos but the final result and production (those cuts and fast changes and the omnipresent treatment of samples) makes this EP more current and a product of its time (let's not forget that most of the electronica is hardly Italodisco influenced lately) that just a nostalgic revivalism. And at the end what really counts are the songs, and they are good.
Get the record from Hippos in Tanks, the same people who put out the single.

Games - Strawberry Skies.mp3


Many things have been said about Twin Shadow in the last couple of months, most of them good, since the release of his first album Forget. Bringing 80s glamour back to music via Morrissey or New Order, his music is full of great timeless that stands out beyond revival or even genres. As the production of the album is carried out by Grizzly's Chris Taylor and the record co-released between Terrible and 4AD, he probably had thought it would be fair to give a song for the second instalment of the single split series of the label with one of the songs that didn't make it to the album. Savannah Howl, that could had easily make the cut and be on the album, is 100% what you can expect after hearing all his other songs.
On their side, Violens offer a new remix of one of the songs from their record Amoral. Acid Reign (in the trees remix) is more a reworking that a remix as the new mix is made by themselves. The song slightly remind me another side of the 80s, the one of the first Spandau Ballet, ABC and new pop.
The record art follows the same pattern as its first release and the website: simple and straight forward, two coloured and saying more from the label that from the bands themselves.

Twin Shadow - Savannah Howl.mp3

Friday, 12 November 2010


The Sandwitches have been massively supported by some blogs (GvsB) or mainly ignored by some others (Pitchfork). After releasing an LP, two singles and an EP in the last 12 months of so, they come back with another 7'. Both songs would sit down well with the stuff on their LP, more upbeat and 60s influenced than the songs on Duck Duck Goose! but anyway, as beautiful as anything they put out before. The single, out on 1-2-3-4 Go! Records on November 30th, is already available for pre-order in a limited edition of 100 green vinyl or 400 black vinyl.

Thursday, 4 November 2010


As part of the Elektra 60th anniversary celebrations, the label that started as an independent folk vehicle and move to massive success at the end of the 60s and early 70s (no doubt it was its commercial and artistic peak) is re-releasing a series of classic albums and singles, some of them deleted for over 40 years. The singles they're re-releasing are Love's 7 and 7 is / No Fourteen, Tim Buckley's Aren't You The Girl / Strange Street Affair Under Blue and Nico's Frozen Warnings / No One Is There.
After the Velvet Underground, Nico's career was slightly eclipsed by Lou Reed's and John Cale's but albums like Chelsea Girl, The Marble Index (from where the two songs on the single are) or Desertshore should be considered as important as Transformer, Berlin or Paris 1919. The mixture of pop and experimentation on her albums, specially on the ones I mentioned, was a perfect starting point for some other artists that came afterwards and took inspiration to do the same.

These singles are limited to 750 copies and they will probably never be released again so it's a great opportunity to get them and enjoy them as if they were new again.

Nico - No One is There.mp3

Monday, 1 November 2010


It is a normal thing for band members to start having parallel projects once a band has released some records and has got some audience recognition. That's always something good meaning the band members want to try other ways and genres to fulfill their musical aspirations but it can also mean the beginning of a disintegration process of the main band if that exploration of new possibilities results in a more successful project either meaning they get more public interest or artistic enjoyment.
Vivian Girls have not been around for a long time but we have already seen many projects coming from the main band, either from active members of the band or members who've left the mother band forever to join other projects: Crystal Stills, Best Coast, The Babies, Dum Dum Girls, All Saints Day and Frankie Rose & the Outs are just some of those projects that have share a member with the Vivian Girls at some point of their short career and now we can announced a new project, this time from Katy Goodman whose also been part of some of the other projects mentioned before, and although the project mentions two other members on Myspace, it's meant to be her solo project.
La Sera's first single, Never Come Around, will be out in November 16 on Hardly Art, home of releases from Fergus & Geronimo, Golden Triangle or Arthur & Yu and it's going to be followed by a whole LP next year. Check the song and the spooky and funny video.

La Sera - Never Come Around.mp3