At first listen, Gringo Star’s latest album The Sides and In Between is a cacophonous yet delightful mixture of sounds. The band themselves summed up this sound perfectly as “echo-slathered, doo-wop indebted indie gems; psychedelic garage bangers, gritty R&B shuffles and spaghetti-western weirdness.”
They are hard to put a finger on, but are without a doubt an eclectic yet captivating quartet who really shine in their fourth studio album.
The Oxford band Foals have been on a trajectory of increased intensity and depth over the last ten years, beginning with 2008’s Anitdotes up to now, as sonic glimpses into their fourth album, What Went Down emerge. Today marks the video release of “Mountain At My Gate,” the second single that is as massive as the title track released in June.
To attend a Palma Violets show is liken to sticking yourself in a large coin-operated clothes dryer along with some random shoes, a few beer cans, some whiskey mixed with a pint of saliva, and pressing ’Start’. It’s quite the ride, and you’ll come out if it disheveled yet blissful and happy (just not Downey fresh). Having heard some of the new songs from Palma Violets third album, Danger In The Club (Rough Trade), back in March at SXSW, this third endeavor follows suit with their previous two releases, being the on-demand version of their live performances.
When Django Django first begin to penetrate the earbuds and radio airwaves in 2012 with their debut Default, they did so by storm due to a truly unique twist on song production, style and song. The four-piece’s approach of kitchen sink concepts stirs together tropic urban jungle aesthetics with holiday-on-the-beach ethics, but with the expertise of a seasoned symphony. The result was a massive, halo effect that seemed to come from another planet, figuratively and literally.
A quite timely video was just released by Carl Barât and The Jackals for the group’s first single, “Glory Days,” in dedication to the 306 British and Commonwealth soldiers shot at dawn during World War I for "cowardice" or "desertion," yet another tragedy of war. It not only coincides with the beginnings of their new U.K. tour, which launched Thursday, 14 November and continues through 21 November in London, but with the other tributes taking place for the many, many who lost their lives 100 years ago.
It’s sometimes easy when listening to electronic-infused musical pieces, to envision a laboratory-like setting where these tonal tunes are born. Yes, the sporadic bleeps on “Great Equator,” a track from Zammuto’s newly released Anchor are robotic in nature, but it is nature and all its organic surroundings that seem to inspire fantasy and gorgeous creativity in the mind of Nick Zummato, the brain and body behind the band.
When a band’s first release is “highly anticipated,” their fans have already clung to their sound, connected to the signature melodies, and memorised lyrics to the first few songs that initially emerged from bedroom sessions. Thus is Lacuna by Childhood, the London four-piece that wooed unknowing ears attending The Great Escape last year and packed that Blind Tiger gig with people who were already addicted to “Solemn Skies” and “Blue Velvet”.
Right in time for the season when nature is blooming, emerging from the frost and frozen winter, is the debut E.P. from Los Angeles duo, Thunderhank. Comprised of five flowing tracks, blossoming with welcoming beats and lazy, veiled vocals, the E.P. is the follow up to their popular first emergence song, “Tracker.” (the band has chosen to make their tracks private at the moment...keeping the embed in the event they make them public again.)
Much has been made recently of the blooming success of the British four-piece Temples; accolades from the most compliment-stingy media outlets both stateside and in their native U.K., many referring to Temples as the band that finally concoct the classic 60-70s Brit-rock formula while still bringing a fresh sound to British rock & roll. Even the annoyingly opinionated Sir Noel Gallagher managed to massage their growing ego.
Cheatahs’ self-titled debut finds the UK-based quartet working within a slim range of genre styles, but with no specific one that defines the sound of the record. Even so, there is a very familiar line that strings throughout the entire listen. Predominantly ruled by a driving, 90’s post-punk vibe, with a hint of ambient shoegaze, the guitar tones are heavy and noisy, yet comfortable like an old pair of pajamas. So while it is not necessarily innovative, it feels like they perfectly captured a sound from a bygone era while still injecting a new and unique twist that makes it sound fresher than a blatant pillaging of their influences.