Saturday, 19 April 2014

Lykke Li #6 - Gunshot

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The irreplaceable Lykke Li returns with the latest preview from her forthcoming third LP I Never Learn (due May 5th and available to pre-order here) "Gunshot".

The track is a slow-burner that blossoms from Lykke's typically devastating delivery and the same intimate, inwards emotion that accompanied earlier previews "No Rest For The Wicked" and "Love Me Like I'm Not Made Of Stone" to dramatic power-ballad choruses and the repeated cries of "never get you back".

I'm glad of those choruses because I've kept saying how strong and eighties her live set sounded at the BBC Six Music Festival last month yet until now all we'd heard from I Never Learn was its moments of pain and rejection, here Lykke Li takes those same feelings and turns them on themselves with big, bold defiance. Something she's done before of course on the wonderful "Get Some" from Wounded Rhymes. I'm pretty excited to hear this record in full. Just a couple of weeks now. Stream "Gunshot" below.

Friday, 18 April 2014

YOU - New Music "Introducing"


North London quartet YOU have created a shiver-inducing debut single with "In Halves", a track which evokes instant Portishead comparisons thanks to its cool electronic edge, a haunting, almost claustrophobic piano and vocalist Anna Waldmann's ghostly vocals, floating dreamlike across a tapestry of silky tones and luscious ambiance. Quite divine.

The track is taken from an EP due 28th April via MUK Records with a date at London's Strongroom Bar next Wednesday, 23rd - details.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart #5 - Eurydice


The Easter break is finally with us (or nearly with you, depending on your time-zone) so what better way of getting in the mood for four days off (assuming you work, I always think the demographic of this blog is of a similar age to me) than with The Pains of Being Pure at Heart.

Kip Berman and co have long perfected a carefree approach to indie-pop which results in a guaranteed smile-on-your-face listen which is perfectly encapsulated in the title of their forthcoming third LP Days of Abandon (due in the UK in June via Fierce Panda) and their latest track "Eurydice" is no different. It's not going to convert any nay-sayers but propelled by spritely percussion and shimmering guitar textures the track bristles with excitement against boy-girl vocals and warming, optimistic melody, basically the sort of song made for singing aloud to.

With this post I'll wish a Happy Easter to you all. I'm taking a couple days off from the blog to spend some real time with my family but they'll be a couple of pre-writes to follow and make it look like I'm still here....

The Cadbury Sisters - Milk


I've been meaning to catch up with The Cadbury Sisters since I included them as one of my picks for the Glastonbury Emerging Talent Contest earlier this year and the arrival of a new video for their track "Milk" serves as the perfect opportunity...

The track is the biggest and boldest heard from the sibling trio to date and combines what originally caught my attention, smoldering, entwined harmonies and finger-plucked acoustic guitars with slow-burning soundscapes that grows to an incredible finale as burgeoning percussion and meaty electric riffs come to the fore before closing with a delicate return to those haunting voices. I love it.

"Milk" is taken from a new five track EP Close which is due for release on June 16th via Fear of Fiction Records.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Lazy Day - With My Mind


Lazy Day might be a new name to you but perhaps Tilly Scantlebury and Hella Better Dancer are not, they certainly aren't new to me with HBD being a band I've supported on this blog for almost three years now with the relationship leading to my little label Beautiful Strange releasing a physical version of their (and with that knowledge you maybe aware that a biased opinion awaits) stunning single "Sleeptalking" late last year (the band also played for Beautiful Strange live shows on a couple of occasions, yes I'm lucky).

So with that in mind, it's with great pleasure that I got a sneaky early listen to the track I'm going to try and refrain from painting with too many superlatives today. "With My Mind" is most fully realised track that Tilly has released thus far under her Lazy Day pseudonym. Earlier tracks shared on her Soundcloud suited the band name (currently just Tilly, with hopefully a live band and dates to follow) perfectly, full of plaintive daydreams and spacious, echoed vocals. "With My Mind" takes that further with a brooding intensity and a hypnotic guitar riff that will embed itself in your brain, couple it with Tilly's magnetic voice, her sumptuous, soothing tones wrap around you and soon you're lost deep within. Quite brilliant.

Fear of Men #11 - Decent / America

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I'm so slow on the uptake / behind on my emails (I'm still working from the backlog that comes with year-end at work and going on a mini-holiday) that one new track from Fear of Men has become two. With their debut full-length Loom almost with us (due next week via Kanine Records), I was already pretty excited for its release after following the band for about three years and hearing its opening tracks "Alta / Waterfall" and first single "Loom", now these new tracks confirm it's guaranteed placing amongst the years finest LP's so far.

On the surface "Descent" seems to a beautifully sweet, surging pop nugget with blossoming string instrumentation and Jess' honey-toned vocals, however, a darker tone is never too far away and the intimate lyrics hint at troubles from the result of over-reliance on one person. The other new one "America" is perhaps the biggest indication of the bands transformation, from an a cappella introduction to a flawless multi-textured gem which brings together the bands infinite charm, fragile emotions and engulfing beauty. I'm off to see the band tonight at Birthdays - it should be a belter.