DINKED EDITION

RELEASES

Dinked was founded in 2018 by Drift, Piccadilly Records, Resident and Transmission. Four independent retailers coming together to form a new collective of like-minded shops.

You’ve read all about the "vinyl revival”. You’ve heard about how physical sales are outperforming downloads. You’ve seen loads of new record shops open their doors in the past few years. All sounds pretty rosy right?

Well, yeah, it is in many ways. It’s certainly a long way from the doom and gloom record stores were facing ten years ago, when all the focus was on digital, shops were going under weekly and the outlook was rather bleak for independent record retail.

It’s true that the renewed interest and investment in vinyl has offered indie record shops a new lifeline and has given us a valid position on the high street again. However, we are facing a whole new world of challenges and pressures: the rising costs of rent, rates, wages, pensions and stock, the increasing level of competition from those wanting to jump on the bandwagon and competition from within our own sector.

As independent record shops, we all operate entirely individually. This has many advantages in that we all offer a completely different experience, range of stock, atmosphere and set of knowledge. We’re not governed by politics and don’t answer to investors, so we’re able to remain true and authentic. We wanted to establish something that allows us to work together more as a united front, celebrating our strengths and differences whilst connecting and bonding us for a common cause.

With that in mind, we stopped just talking about it, got our shit together and established DINKED

The Psychotic Monks

Pink Colour Surgery

    After two fiery albums, ‘Silence Slowly And Madly Shines’ in 2017 (Alter K) and ‘Private Meaning First’ in 2019 (Vicious Circle / Fatcat Records), France’s The Psychotic Monks have never ceased to impress with their maturity and determination to offer a singular stage and discographic presence.

    Although radical, ‘Pink Colour Surgery’’s work is truly accessible to those who immerse themselves in its in depth. One is unceasingly hypnotised, shaken, as their soul flirts dangerously with a furious and oppressive trance. How then the journey becomes addictive, letting yourself slide from one track to another, sometimes struck, sometimes set ablaze with an unexpected epiphany, because its light irradiates us. Live their music is an intimate, sensory experience, the affects of which continue to be felt for a long time afterwards.

    Now they announce their third album ‘Pink Colour Surgery’, out 3rd February 2022 via FatCat Records, recorded and produced by Daniel Fox of Gilla Band - it’s composed in part by improvisations, and is presented as an act of resistance to the ambient violence. Disconcerting at first sight, this new opus operates in the dark, a surgery of ethics which is fleshed out of pink for a staggering metamorphosis. Its very structure takes the listener on an initiatory trip full of secret corners, provided they are prepared to dive into it, to plunge into it.

    ‘Pink Colour Surgery’ is like a hidden room in a house that we have never entered before, and the possibility of feeling good there is not excluded.


    TRACK LISTING

    Side A
    (Pre-Enter)
    Post-Post-
    Gamble And Dangle
    Side B
    (Bird's Part)
    Crash
    Imagerie
    Side C
    (88)
    Décors
    Side D
    (Gestures)
    All That Fall
    Location.memory
    (traP S'driB)

    Abracadabra

    Shapes & Colors

      If you find the time, please come and stay a while in abracadabra’s beautiful neighbourhood; a magically wonky wonderland where strangers leave as friends to a block party soundtrack as eclectic as it is infectious. The California duo’s album ‘shapes & colors’ is a dazzling collage of psych-fuelled synthscapes and contemporary Baroque-pop of anti-capitalist movements and escapism, precisely pieced around their own working lives in a blue-collar town. In the heart of Oakland’s industrial Jingletown above a former auto-repair shop in what was once a mechanics’ break room where poker rounds ensued, Hannah Skelton (Vocals, Synthesizers) and Chris Niles, (Bass, Synthesizers) constructed the angular 80s-tinged anthems (think John Hughes montages to Talking Heads) of their new album, to positively offset the pandemic’s amplification of dysfunctional society. “It reflects our current reality: a huge mess that is systematically broken but isn’t entirely lost,” Hannah tells. “We’re inviting listeners to conjure up every drop of hope and willpower left inside them, pour that into the giant vat of anger and frustration bubbling inside us all, and with this potion collectively enact the necessary change to bring love and light into this dark space.”

      When Covid forced Hannah from her salon in San Francisco to become a backyard mobile hairdresser, what she saw inspired them both and the lyrical foundations for their new record. “I’d drive to mansions and people would complain about how hard the pandemic had been next to their swimming pool and tennis courts.” First meeting after the album’s co-producer Jason Kick (Mild High Club, Sonny and the Sunsets) recruited the pair for a Halloween band covering Eurythmics’ art-rock debut ‘In The Garden,’ the pair hit it off and shapes & colors is a product of the years that followed. It combines Chris’ own rhythmic demos following years on the road touring and opening for Amon Tobin, Matthew Dear and Generationals in Maus Haus with Hannah’s lyrical musings honed from project Cassiopeia, so even when topics are as heavy as the beats, they’re met with luminously positive arrangements of hope and warmth.

      The by-product of a psychedelic New Year’s Eve escaping a monotonous 2020 reality, the title track itself captures fireworks over East Oakland as viewed from the pair’s couch whilst listening to Mort Garson’s Plantasia for 6 hours straight. The daydream collage of ‘inyo county’ is “a little souvenir taking me back into the bottled-up essence of a slow lazy morning, waking up in bed far from home,” Hannah tells recalling those enforced stay-at-home days. “It fell out of me because I was craving that blissful flavour.” Meanwhile ‘dawn of the age of aquarius’s new parallel reality evolved from a happy accident when their demos had reset to a drone which Jason reworked into a Laurie Anderson-esque breathy vocoder effect. Even bloops and beeps from a forgotten recording session at the Vintage Synthesizer Museum in Emeryville can be heard, where the pair used Mini Moog, Fairlight EMI and ARP 2600 to arrange their sound into shapes whilst distortion and dirt from mixing on 1979 Neve 5313 Console added to the recordings’ color.

      Casting a brighter rainbow still, in all its pastel-hued glory, Hannah, also illustrated a self-portrait of the band for the album artwork. “It reflects our makeshift recording studio to encapsulate all aspects of that time and space,” she shares of their abode where, over an intense two-week period and fuelled by the aroma of fermenting vino from the winery below, their single chord, bass and drum-heavy, groove-first momentum took them on an unexpected journey whilst the next-door couple would fire pizzas in their yard and a grandfather across the road would sweep the street clean. “We’d drink coffee and start the day, consistently working, without interruption,” Chris tells of finding their flow. “The loft is a cool space with skylights, tall ceilings and no shared walls so we could be as loud as we wanted to be.”

      Just as well. Diving into decades of electronica and crunchy sound effects, field recordings and animal sounds, blended with an infectious Latin influence, shapes & colors is bolstered by live percussionists Greg Poneris (drums), K. Dylan Edrich (Vocals, Percussion: congas, bongos, chimes, cow bells and wood blocks, tone drum and tri-tone whistle) and Tom Smith (Guitar, Synthesizers, Vocals). It shimmies with the charismatic energy of ESG, Tom Tom Club, Lizzy Mercier Descloux, and the dub hits of King Tubby, the melodic sensibilities of Prince, Stereolab, and idiosyncratic Deerhoof offering an ornate alternative to traditional guitar pop chord progressions as they layer wrecking ball-sized danceable motifs to rumble the dust off the cars on the street from the nearby concrete factory. “We take some big swings to create interesting moments,” Chris explains. NIMBY crews grab those earplugs now. abracadabra is your new noisy neighbour, and there’s no turning this party down.

      TRACK LISTING

      Side A
      1. Talk Talk
      2. In A Photo
      3. Telling Time
      4. Swim
      5. Inyo County
      Side B
      6. Don't Like U
      7. Impactor
      8. At The Zoo
      9. Shapes & Colors
      10. Dawn Of The Age Of Aquarius

      M(h)aol

      Attachment Styles

        Irish intersectional feminist five piece M(h)aol have announced their debut album 'Attachment Styles' out via TULLE.

        Following the release of their debut EP 'Gender Studies', the band hit the ground running in 2022. Gaining a reputation as one of the most sought after live bands of the summer, M(h)aol performed at Primavera, Green Man, Latitude, and End of the Road, toured Europe with Gilla Band and Shellac, and more.

        Gracing the cover of Spotify’s Hot New Bands multiple times, and based between Dublin, London, and Bristol, M(h)aol (pronounced male) are formed of Róisín Nic Ghearailt (She/Her), Constance Keane (She/Her), Jamie Hyland (She/Her), Zoë Greenway (She/Her), and Sean Nolan (He/Him).

        Today the 5-piece announce their debut album Attachment Styles out 3rd February 2023 via TULLE Collective.

        ‘Attachment Styles’ is a record about social connection, queerness and healing. When Róisín was writing the lyrics, she used the theory of attachment styles as an overarching theme which is a theory that looks at the impact our inter-familial relationships and society have on how we relate to one another.

        With the album, the listener goes on a journey of healing. We start with 'Asking For It', a song that deals with one of the worst things that can happen to someone, then we travel through various stages of self-acceptance and community building with the triumphant ‘Period Sex’. Bassist Jamie produced, mixed, and mastered the album where she wanted to capture the live element, meaning it was recorded in one small room with no headphones, minimal drum mics, and only a PA for vocals.


        TRACK LISTING

        Side A
        1. Asking For It
        2. Bored Of Men
        3. No One Ever Talks To Us
        4. Bisexual Anxiety
        5. Therapy
        6. Nice Guys
        Side B
        1. Kim Is A Punk Type Dog
        2. Cowboy Honey
        3. Femme
        4. Period Sex

        Free Love

        Inside

          FKA Happy Meals, Free Love and their music are a conscious study in duality: thumping live tracks and meditational mantras, pop songs and esoteric experiments, acoustic and electronic instrumentation, lyrics in French and English, the Masculine and the Feminine, all side-by-side. Paragons of the cross-pollinating Glasgow DIY scene, their rapturous psychedelic odysseys have been emanating from the city since 2013 via esteemed labels including Night School and Optimo Music. Free Love’s debut EP Luxury Hits was released in 2018 to much critical acclaim (“a groovy fever dream” – Line of Best Fit) and saw them shortlisted for the Scottish Album of the Year Award (Suzi and Lewis’s third SAY Award nomination in all, following two under the Happy Meals moniker). It was followed in 2019 by the mini-album Extreme Dance Anthems (“music to move both body and mind” – Clash). In 2018 Free Love released a limited-edition vinyl EP, written and recorded on the isle of Eigg as part of Lost Map’s V I S I T ▲ T I O N S residency programme – strengthening a long-standing kinship between the band and the label which has seen them perform live many times at Lost Map events on Eigg and elsewhere.

          It leads to the release on Lost Map in 2023 of Free Love’s latest opus INSIDE. Written and recorded at the band’s Glasgow home studio during and after the lockdowns of 2020-2021, and completed just before the birth of Lewis and Suzi’s son Echo in the summer of 2022, its 10 tracks of house-quaking acid pop, celestial drones and yogic devotionals are a by-turns banging and blissed-out meditation on life and death, community and seclusion, worlds both outwith and within. A song about “coming back to the centre after spiralling too far and recognising you’re not the only person wondering what’s going on”, ‘Open The Door’ reaches for the fresh silicon sound of Yellow Magic Orchestra. ‘Stop’ and ‘Golden Goose’ channel the space age pop dreams of Broadcast, while ‘Le Mirage’ and ‘Dans Le Noir’ take influence from 1970s electronic dance music pioneer Patrick Cowley – the former his gay porn movie soundtracks, the latter Cowley’s game-changing hi-NRG productions such as ‘Menergy’ and ‘Megatron Man’. Transportational seven-minute album closer ‘I Become’ sees Free Love borrow lyrics from the first track Lewis and Suzi ever recorded together, ‘Crystal Salutation’. “In doing, we become.”

          “The sounds and themes on INSIDE came from the experiments we started working on throughout lockdown in our home studio, FULL ASHRAM CELESTIAL GARDEN,” says Lewis. “Sometimes we’d leave a sound running on loop until little melodies would come in and then that would start to take the form of the track. It has been a weird time for anyone to be making anything creative – to make sense of any reason to it all, we had to position creating music as an essential ritualistic part of our daily existence. We used the studio as a portal and made INSIDE.”

          Free Love’s euphoric live show has seen them tour Europe, USA, India and Russia with the likes of The Flaming Lips, Liars and James Holden and The Animal Spirits, with Suzi often tearing through the audience centring the energy in the middle of the room over the live hardware electronics operated by Lewis from the stage turning into a ritualistic communal catharsis. As well as performing their debut Boiler Room live set from their home studio during lockdown, the band remixed music for Django Django and Charlotte Gainsbourg.


          TRACK LISTING

          Side A
          1. Le Mirage
          2. Open The Door
          3. Fight Or Flight
          4. All The Same To Me
          5. Golden Goose
          Side B
          1. Dans Le Noir
          2. Don’t Stop
          3. Stop
          4. It’s A Feeling
          5. I Become

          MOLLY

          Picturesque

            Austrian duo MOLLY return with their second album, Picturesque, via Sonic Cathedral.

            The album’s seemingly brief tracklisting belies a work of great beauty and depth, and one which turned into a one-man crusade for singer/guitarist Lars Andersson, intertwining deeply personal stories with his love for the era of Romanticism.

            “Every time I go to a museum and I’m about to pass through the era of Romanticism I stop in awe,” says Lars of the enduring appeal of the 18th century artistic movement. “Whatever it is – stories, paintings, music – it triggers something deep within me, something profoundly human.
            It really hits a nerve, and it utterly immerses me to a point where I can’t move.”

            The album replicates this feeling; a gloriously over-the-top blend of Slowdive and Sigur Rós, mixed with the single-mindedness of Daniel Johnston and the noisiness of Nirvana, it’s as bold and beautiful and every bit as ornate as the art that inspired it.

            Unlike their acclaimed debut, 2019’s All That Ever Could Have Been, which gradually came into focus with a 15-minute opening track, Picturesque hits home from the very first note of the short and sweet opener, ‘Ballerina’. That’s not to say there aren’t epics here – ‘Metamorphosis’ is essentially a 12-minute suite of three movements; blistering closer ‘The Lot’ is 11 minutes of Swans-inspired heaviness – but everything is much more direct and focused. This isn’t an album to lose yourself in, it’s one to get swept away by.

            “‘More is more’ was definitely the credo when making this record,” agrees Lars. “A big inspiration were bands like Pond and the way they manage to fill their songs up with stuff to the absolute maximum. While I definitely tried to give the listener some room to breathe at certain points and while, in good old post-rock fashion, it still builds up and breaks down, it relies much more on simple melody and harmony as opposed to noisy experimentation to transport feeling.”

            Never more so than on the first single, ‘The Golden Age’, which is the album’s centre-piece; a soaring slice of über-shoegaze that is so stunning you can’t take your eyes or ears off it.

            Like all the songs on the album, it’s based around a fairy-tale from the Romantic era. In this case, it’s Heinrich von Ofterdingen by the German poet, author and philosopher Novalis (other influences are: The Steadfast Tin Soldier by Hans Christian Andersen; The Seven Ravens and Hans in Luck by the Brothers Grimm; Undine by Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué and The Golden Pot by E.T.A. Hoffmann), with Lars drawing parallels between the titular character’s mystical and romantic searchings and his own personal quest.

            This is apt as the album has been an overriding obsession for Lars for the past two-and-a-half years; as well as writing and recording the songs (bandmate Phillip Dornauer played drums), he also mixed and mastered them at his Alpine Audio studio and Picturesque is very much his Brian Wilson or Kevin Shields moment. MOLLY were in the middle of their European tour when Covid hit in early 2020, forcing Lars to retreat back to his home outside Innsbruck and giving him time and space to think about every detail of the record.

            “Well, I was on a quest I guess,” he admits. “Like everyone, I was stranded at home and at some point I just said to myself, ‘If not now, then when?’ It was an intense process. I’ve worked on music from other bands and artists before but producing and mixing your own music is an utterly different animal. It was probably the most intense thing I’ve ever done, but it was also incredibly rewarding and the feeling of it all coming together piece by piece is incomparable.”

            The artwork is just as effective. “I think of Radiohead’s OK Computer – what you hear on the record is what you see on the cover,” explains Lars. “We were inspired by what we call ‘wimmelbilder’ [hidden pictures] in German, a very specific style in art where there are a lot of little things happening. When you see it from further away, it looks organic like a lost painting from the area of Romanticism, but the closer you look the more digital it gets. It’s a nice analogy.”

            He’s right, it perfectly sums up the conflict between Romanticism and 21st century life.

            “Romanticism was basically an answer to the Industrial Revolution as well as the social and political norms of the Age Of Enlightenment,” concludes Lars. “Now, we all live in a much more industrialised, materialistic, individualistic and sterile society than any early Romanticist could have ever possibly imagined. Over 200 years later the Romanticists have lost the battle.”

            With the divine and downright pulchritudinous Picturesque, MOLLY begin the fightback.

            TRACK LISTING

            Side A
            Ballerina
            Metamorphosis
            The Golden Age
            Side B
            Sunday Kid
            So To Speak
            The Lot

            Teleman

            Good Time / Hard Time

              A tree may lose its leaves but will continue to grow. For Teleman, the band’s fourth album ‘Good Time / Hard Time’ is their first as a trio and sees them evolve as a force of nature as they navigate new beginnings despite a wealth of experience behind them. Music and lyrical stream of consciousness entwined, the album makes sense of a world in chaos and its words of wisdom are a vital reminder that even when things seem heavy, life is precious.

              “Nature can teach us so much about patience and how you can’t control everything - you just have to let things happen as it intends… it’s great therapy,” tells the band’s singer and guitarist, Thomas Sanders whose garden-dwelling and park strolls to the studio have inevitably wormed their way into Teleman’s songwriting. “I was reading about forests and how trees help each other, they don’t survive on their own, they grow together… as a band we’ve now grown into each other as a triangle shape after having been a square for so long.”

              With classic Teleman style, ‘Good Time / Hard Time’ is their most dancefloor-friendly record to date. Following the departure of the band’s long-time keyboard player Jonny Sanders to focus on his film and design work, Peter Cattermoul now leads on keyboard duties and Hiro Amamiya slides seamlessly between drum machine, live drums and even the odd keyboard solo as it captures the bounce of choice cuts from their own DJ sets such as Metronomy or the classic disco of Boney M, Giorgio Moroder, early house music and 80s vibes - all the while doused in their trademark blend of uplifting melancholy. “You’ve got to experience the hard times to appreciate the good times in life,” Tom explains. “Most of the songs are about universal things everyone can relate to, the small and simple details about difficult connections and overcoming them.”


              TRACK LISTING

              Side A
              Short Life
              Trees Grow High
              Wonderful Times
              Easy Now I've Got You
              Cherish
              Side B
              1. Hello Everybody
              2. I Can Do It For You
              3. The Juice
              4. The Girls Who Came To Stay
              5. Good Time/Hard Time

              Dinked Edition Bonus 7”:
              Side A
              Somebody Tell Me It’s Alright
              Side B
              Short Life Demo

              James Yorkston, Nina Persson & The Secondhand Orchestra

              The Great White Sea Eagle

                James Yorkston, Nina Persson and The Second Hand Orchestra release The Great White Sea Eagle, the follow up to James Yorkston and The Second Hand Orchestra’s The Wide, Wide River - a Guardian Top 10 Folk Album of 2021.

                The record didn’t start life as a follow up; in early 2021, Yorkston began visiting his studio in Cellardyke, Fife and for the first time, starting writing songs on the piano as opposed to his usual guitar as he gazed upon the sea outside his window.

                After sending the first five or six songs to Karl-Jonas Winqvist (the ringleader/conductor of TSHO), they began to discuss working on the music together. With Yorkston’s shift from guitar to piano, they thought about what other changes they could make to their process which led to the involvement of a guest singer and the legendary Nina Persson (The Cardigans) was brought into the fold.

                They followed the same methodology as The Wide, Wide River – apart from James, Nina and KJ, none of The Second Hand Orchestra had heard the music prior to entering the studio – and the arrangements were made up on the spot. Yorkston summarises: “Everyone who was playing in The Second Hand Orchestra, in their own way they are all unique and colourful players. There was no-one there who didn’t know what to do. I would bring them the songs, we would start one - I would play it, and second time round people would start singing and playing, and by the time we had done it three or four times we would hit record and we would be ready to go. And the thing that they all had was the ability to give each other space and to come up with their parts based on what other people were playing naturally was a very quick process, and they were all so open, nobody was egotistical. Everything was just happy. I love the wildness in it.”

                Today, they release the first song from the forthcoming album, “Hold Out For Love”, a kind of Fife-gospel anthem with Yorkston and Persson’s vocals interwoven together over the lyrics: “You’ll have no regrets / If you hold out for love / Don’t sell yourself short / For the sake of a moment.”

                James Yorkston, Nina Persson and The Second Hand Orchestra were joined by Philip Selway (Radiohead) to record a live version of the song, directed by Dah Dah Dit.


                TRACK LISTING

                Side A
                Sam & Jeanie McGreagor
                An Upturned Crab
                Keeping Up With The Grandchildren, Yeah
                The Heavy Lyric Police
                A Sweetness In You
                A Forestful Of Rougues
                Side B
                Peter Paulo Van Der Heyden
                Mary
                Hold Out For Love
                The Harmony
                The Great White Sea Eagle
                A Hollow Skeleton Lifts A Heavy Wing

                Baby Cool

                Earthling On The Road To Self Love

                  Marrying psychedelic pop with folk and a touch of country, 'Earthling On The Road To Self Love' is the sublime debut album by Brisbane, Australia-based artist Baby Cool – the latest side project by Nice Biscuit co-front woman Grace Cuell.

                  Cuell says of the record, which follows her debut single 'Magic' and tours with Babe Rainbow and The Lazy Eyes: “The songs on this album are deeply sentimental. I have a lot I need to sing about to help me make sense of this earthly pod I have been gifted. If in singing these words out loud, I can help others find solace in knowing that we’re all out here flailing about in the cosmos, then it feels good to me.”

                  Recorded with Sam Joseph (Family Jordan), the songs on 'Earthling' were brought to life with the help of Jess Ferronato (Nice Biscuit), Nick Cavendish (Nice Biscuit) and Drew Heyden (The Flamingo Jones): "I had such a beautiful community of friends that helped bring this whole thing to life. There was magic and love in every part of the process of creating this album.”



                  TRACK LISTING

                  Side A
                  1) The Sea
                  2) Mother Luna
                  3) Altar
                  4) For Us
                  Side B
                  5) Poison
                  6) Country Song
                  7) Interlude
                  8) Magic
                  9) Daydream

                  Dinked Edition Flexi-Disc
                  1) Daydream (Stripped-Back)

                  The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster

                  Horse Of The Dog - 2023 Edition

                    In the early 2000s, The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster emerged with a black-hearted blast of frenetic psychobilly, punk and goth that felt like a closing time punch-up between The Birthday Party, The Cramps and The Make-Up. Their lunatic intensity was best captured within their first two albums, 2002’s ‘Hörse of the Dög’ and 2004’s ‘The Royal Society’, both of which remain adored as cult classics to this day by a fanbase still addicted by their visceral, riotous noise rock.

                    One of the band’s biggest fans is the film director Edgar Wright, who directed the music video for their song ‘Psychosis Safari’ as he was working on his own cult classic, ‘Shaun of the Dead’. The film even featured ‘Mister Mental’ (from ‘The Royal Society’) on its soundtrack. Still a fan to this day, Wright has penned the accompanying liner notes that will feature in all physical versions of the reissue. He writes:

                    “The aural assault of ‘Celebrate Your Mother’, ‘Chicken’, ‘Giant Bones’, ‘Fishfingers’ and, frankly, the whole fucking album, represents the uniquely combustive togetherness of this band who in 2002 existed paradoxically both within and outside the music scene of the day… Behold an album too fast to live, but too young to ever die. The finest 25 minutes of freak energy one can handle.”

                    Formed in Brighton on January 1st 2000, The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster went on to release one final record, 2010’s ‘Blood & Fire’, before disbanding. They experienced a rediscovery in 2012 when ‘Chicken’ featured in a Nike campaign, which led to the band reuniting for sold-out shows in London, Brighton and Manchester. 


                    TRACK LISTING

                    Vinyl Tracklisting:
                    Side A
                    1. Celebrate Your Mother 2:33
                    2. Chicken 2:47
                    3. Whack Of Shit 2:18
                    4. Psychosis Safari 2:52
                    5. Giant Bones 1:46
                    Side B
                    6. Fishfingers 2:07
                    7. Charge The Guns 1:25
                    8. Morning Has Broken 2:33
                    9. Team Meat 2:45
                    10. Presidential Wave 4:06
                    "B-Side" Bonus Tracks:
                    Side A
                    Alex
                    Torrential Abuse
                    Return December
                    Briefcases For Girls
                    Sacred Metal
                    Side B
                    Turkish Delights Of The Devil
                    Ho Ha
                    Palomino's Dream
                    Lazy Bones
                    Flag Party

                    CD Tracklist:
                    1. Celebrate Your Mother
                    2. Chicken
                    3. Whack Of Shit
                    4. Psychosis Safari
                    5. Giant Bones
                    6. Fishfingers
                    7. Charge The Guns
                    8. Morning Has Broken
                    9. Team Meat
                    10. Presidential Wave

                    Cate Le Bon

                    Cyrk & Cyrk II - 10th Anniversary Exclusive Dinked Edition

                      There are small musical touches throughout CYRK which make it distinctive from the work of any other singer-songwriter, colouring the record with splashes of ingenious eccentricity and psych-pop flourishes. Cyrk II is gentler and dreamier, a pleasant blend that gives way to soothing harmonies with less of the eccentricities that Le Bon has become known for. 2022 marks 10 years of the release of both Cyrk and Cyrk II.

                      Cryk
                      Cate Le Bon’s second album, Cyrk, was released to widespread acclaim in 2012 and saw the Welsh singer/songwriter play live across the world, including being invited by St Vincent to tour the United States. There are small musical touches throughout CYRK which make it distinctive from the work of any other singer-songwriter, colouring the record with splashes of ingenious eccentricity and psych-pop flourishes.

                      Cryk II
                      Cryk II is a collection of the 5 tracks that didn’t make it onto the Cyrk , the rationale being that they’re distinctively different from those on the parent LP. Cyrk II is gentler and dreamier, a pleasant blend that gives way to soothing harmonies with less of the eccentricities that Le Bon has become known for.

                      “A songwriter this unique and talented shouldn’t be standing in anyone’s shadow.” Pitchfork

                      “Cyrk is a curious musical brew that blends Velvet Underground-style shaggy jangles with a kind of bucolic psych-folk sound” BBC Music

                      “One of the most characterful voices of recent times” MOJO

                      "A common thread can be found in CYRK, Cate's second album: the application of a sincere pop-song sensibility, and a yen for the surreal that sidesteps the zany." NME

                      The Murder Capital

                      Gigi's Recovery

                        The Murder Capital’s second studio album Gigi’s Recovery, produced by John Congleton, will be released on January 20, 2023 via Human Season Records. 

                        The Murder Capital’s first album ‘When I Have Fears’ had all its songs written and recorded within the first 9 months of the band knowing each other.

                        Now, with ‘Gigi’s Recovery’, the band had to learn to navigate their personal relationships through the relationships they harnessed with these new songs. Without knowing what these songs would sound like, the band knew what they wanted them to feel like- and worked backwards from there - “We had this slightly tongue-in-cheek mantra at the near-beginning of writing this record, it was - The evolution will not be compromised. This kept us on a course, even when we didn’t know where we were going”. And that’s exactly how The Murder Capital ended up with an album that is both totally pure and yet completely confident in its direction.

                        TRACK LISTING

                        1. Existence
                        2. Crying 
                        3. Return My Head
                        4. Ethel
                        5. The Stars Will Leave Their Stage
                        6. Belonging
                        7. The Lie Becomes The Self
                        8. A Thousand Lives
                        9. We Had To Disappear
                        10. Only Good Things
                        11. Gigi's Recovery
                        12. Exist

                        TVAM

                        High Art Lite

                          TVAM self-released his much-acclaimed debut Psychic Data in the autumn of 2018, something of a cult-classic, the album joined the dots between Suicide’s deconstructed rock ’n’ roll, Boards of Canada’s irresistible nostalgia and My Bloody Valentine’s infinite noise. Psychic Data spawned an ‘Album Of The Day’ at BBC 6Music whilst signature tune ‘Porsche Majeure’ featured in HBO’s smash-hit ‘Succession’.

                          Fast forward the VCR to 2022, High Art Lite takes a different tilt to its predecessor by emphasising the immediate and the personal.The colours are blown-out and the brightness is cranked up.TVAM’s take on role models, fictional movie character tropes, and fables of good and evil, are all tackled with the same suspicious cynicism but this time with an urgent belief in the human condition.

                          A heady mix of Black Mirror’s modern fables, JG Ballard’s gated communities of sun-drenched wealth, and Mulholland Drive’s boulevard of broken daydreams, High Art Lite offers an all-inclusive package of redemption.

                          High Art Lite is the first-ever Dinked Edition collaboration with Invada Records.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Side A
                          Future Flesh
                          Every Day In Every Way
                          Club Nautico (Part 1)
                          Piz Buin
                          Double Lucifer
                          Shallow Ends
                          Side B
                          Semantics
                          Say Anything
                          Host
                          Club Nautico (Part 2)
                          High Art Lite

                          SLUG

                          Thy Socialite!

                            SLUG return with a new album “Thy Socialite!” on 20 January 2023 on a new label formed by Field Music’s Peter and David Brewis.

                            “I started to think about what I could do to challenge my own listeners,” says Ian Black aka SLUG. “And what would be my angle without just releasing 40 minutes of generic bad music?”

                            This was a question that Black found himself asking after thinking about albums made by revered artists who released specific records that some of their loyal fanbase hated - Arctic Monkeys and Tranquillity Base Hotel and Casino, Leonard Cohen and Death of a Ladies Man, Lou Reed and Berlin. “My friend likened Lou’s Berlin to ‘Andrew Lloyd Webber on a horrendous drug come down’. Andrew Lloyd Webber on a horrendous drug come down? That sounds amazing!”

                            Although Thy Socialite!, the first release from Field Music’s new record label Daylight Saving Records, is not the sound of Lloyd Webber quivering and sweating in a rotting Berlin flat but instead, a fun, joyous, audacious record of hard rock, glam, and pop that ranges from arena to art school. “I wanted to include a more rockist palette,” Black says. “My last album, Higgledypiggledy, had influences including The Cardiacs, Prince and The Residents. For this one I wanted to see what I could get out of less indie audience friendly artists such as Toto, Sweet, Wings, Def Leppard and ZZ Top and merge it with a SLUG sensibility. Due to the more rock approach, I was happy for the album to become a big classic rock unit - pompous even.”

                            However, simply a pastiche and nostalgic throwback this isn’t. Despite the playful nods to some of the more grandiose, theatrical and overblown elements of the aforementioned genre, it’s also an album with a contemporary pop edge, slick production and a tangible connection to SLUG’s previous deft mix of indie, rock and art pop.

                            The result of all of this is an album that is fun and unpredictable but also conceptually smart, ambitious and adventurous. A place where classic hard rock and smart art-pop are treated equal, and where taking the piss doesn’t have to equate to being novelty or disposable. It was all part of the challenge that Black set himself from the off when he asked himself “how could I challenge the SLUG listener but bring them on a new fresh journey which will confuse them at first but they will ultimately love?”

                            For David Brewis of Field Music, it was the ideal first record to kick off their new label. "This seemed like the perfect start for Daylight Saving Records," he says. "We've always loved what Ian does and it's been a thrill over the years to help Ian dig these wild musical ideas out from his brain. Now we can have a hand in putting them into people's ears too."


                            TRACK LISTING

                            Side A
                            Insults Sweet Like Treacle
                            Please Turn It Up
                            Casual Cruelty
                            Instant Reaction
                            Honestly Subjective 'Bout Your Own Thing
                            Lovingly Legerdemain
                            Wow (Whatta Gurl)
                            Side B
                            Depends On What You Think Is Nice
                            Be A Good Martyr!
                            Settled With A Wink
                            I Love That Actually
                            Silly Little Things That We Do
                            Cut Of Your Jib

                            Italia 90

                            Living Human Treasure

                              RIYL: Folly Group / M(h)aol / The Murder Capital / LIFE / Crack Cloud / Squid / CROWS

                              Italia 90 release their debut album Living Human Treasure on Jan 20th on Brace Yourself Records. The London based 4-piece have released a number of singles and EPs since their breakthrough and have steadily built a cult following in England and mainland Europe. Italia 90 have received critical acclaim from publications such as DIY Magazine, The Quietus, So Young as well as extensive coverage at BBC 6music - with Steve Lamacq in particular offering continued support. Across the album, tracks from the band’s earliest days (New Factory, Competition) sit side by side with newer tracks, in a breadth of new styles for the band. "We consciously drew on elements from other genres, like new wave, goth rock, post-hardcore, jazz, jungle and ranchera that have inspired us but which we hadn't incorporated into our music previously”.

                              To record the album, the band decamped to the residential Echo Zoo studio in Eastbourne. With five days booked – far longer than the band had ever recorded for in the past – the whole album was tracked within two days with producer Louis Milburn. For the rest of the allotted time, they explored the nooks and crannies of the building and the bounty of unusual instruments lying around to add mystical textures to the bones of the songs.

                              Italia 90's songs aim to be timeless. Like the painting on the album’s cover, which shows a crowd of people all facing away from the viewer, the idea of the collective takes precedence over the individual. “I care deeply about the things that I’m singing about,” says singer, Les Miserable, “but I don’t think that it needs to be me that is saying it. I have my point of view, and think that the ideology that I’m forwarding in the songs is correct, and very important, but it’s not important that it’s me saying them. If I did, I would already be contradicting the things that I am saying in the songs.”

                              This philosophy is the sign of a band going against the grain and stopping to really consider their statements, both musically and lyrically, rather than hopping on trends. Across their debut album, Italia 90 step off the relentless, exhausting hamster wheel and create something fantastic with the abundance of ingredients already here, pointing a different way forwards.


                              TRACK LISTING

                              Side A
                              1. Cut
                              2. Leisure Activities
                              3. Magdalene
                              4. Competition
                              5. New Factory
                              Side B
                              6. The MUMSNET Mambo
                              7. Funny Bones
                              8. Golgotha
                              9. Does He Dream?
                              10. Tales From Beyond
                              11. Harmony

                              DInked Edition Bonus 7":
                              Side A 7”
                              1. This Is Not My Fire (exclusive New Song)
                              2. Ghosts (Japan Cover)
                              Side B 7”
                              An Audio Story By Les Miserable And J Dangerous

                              Rozi Plain

                              Prize

                                Rozi Plain returns with new album ‘Prize’ on Memphis Industries. 

                                Don’t ask Rozi Plain to explain her spellbinding fifth album Prize. Its ten, magical tracks exist as if in another realm, where feelings matter more than meanings, where thoughts have room to roam and where you can live in the moment for as long as you like.

                                Rozi’s signature, free-floating sound was set with her 2015 breakthrough Friend and cemented with 2019’s globally adored What A Boost (‘Like slipping between cotton sheets’ was Pitchfork’s description). Prize builds on both, but takes its cues from elsewhere. By a stretch, it’s Rozi’s most upbeat and daring album to date.

                                References to disco and rave, saxophone treated to sound like strings, silly synths and harp all play a part. Economy is key – every sound has an impact out of proportion to its size, every texture pays dividends. Rozi’s bewitching vocals are bolder and brighter than ever before. Male and female backing vocals feel like friends dropping by.

                                Begun pre-pandemic and composed and recorded everywhere from Glasgow and the Isle of Eigg to a seaside village in French Basque Country, Margate and London’s legendary Total Refreshment Centre, Prize may sound effortless but creating each song was as industry intensive as spinning a spider’s web. A cast of 15 feature, including Kate Stables, with whom Rozi has toured for the past decade in This Is The Kit, contemporary jazz titan Alabaster De Plume and Minneapolis based saxophonist Cole Pulice.


                                TRACK LISTING

                                Side A
                                Agreeing For Two
                                Complicated
                                Help
                                Prove Your Good
                                Side B
                                Painted The Room
                                Sore
                                Spot Thirteen
                                Standing Up

                                Saint Jude

                                Signal

                                  Jude Woodhead AKA Saint Jude is a born and bred South London based producer who first approached songwriting after being diagnosed with Tinnitus which prevented him from pursuing his DJ career. While his previous works found space between genres, with elements of indie, ambient pop, hip-hop, Uk garage and noise, his debut self-produced album 'Signal' rejects the limitations of genres altogether while anchoring his music firmly in the sounds of his native South London.

                                  Conceptualized during the lockdown in 2020, ‘Signal’ is a self-portrait about coming of age during a time of political crisis and social change.

                                  Enlisting the help of past collaborators and friends (Aga Ujma, Low Loudly - Sarah from Drug Store Romeos - Louis Culture, Trim, HALINA and Zeke Ultra), Jude uses a wide range of voices to communicate different perspectives on his subject matter.

                                  BIO:
                                  Jude has, been around since the beginning, playing one of the first Slow Dance parties in a west London warehouse. His sound stems from his youthful and immersive club experiences. Bringing that electronic intoxication back to his bedroom to create music comparable to the electronic sound of Archy Marshall and Mount Kimbie. Jude Woodhead’s material under his own name ‘Beautiful Rain’ and ‘For The Birds’ revealed an exciting new producer in his teens with potential to carve out a similar space to Floating Points, Four Tet, Joy Orbison, and RJD2. Written at 16, 'Beautiful Rain’ brought Graceland to Forest Hill. He repeated the feat on follow-up ‘For The Birds’. With its emotive Arabic vocal line, courtesy of his friend Rachida, an i-D profile entitled "The Captivating Sound of Jude Woodhead'' acknowledged the teenager had "created something truly special.” Jude’s second single under the moniker Saint Jude, ‘Head Is Spinning’ followed ‘Deaf Ears Blind Years’ in its nostalgia for the sweat soaked nights and steamy dance floors of his formative years. It was in those clubs that Jude, a budding DJ, developed tinnitus, drawing him back into the bedroom to work on music that could be played at quieter volumes. ‘Head Is Spinning’ evokes the ecstasy and naivety of those early nights. Inspired by Caribou’s idea of liquid dance music, in which the arrangement is never static, ’Head Is Spinning’ crescendos along with a four-on-the-floor beat, carried by vocals by Poppy Billingham (Sunken). Jude’s musicality has run through his songwriting, production and beat-making from the start. With a sound that nods to everyone from Mount Kimbie to William Basinski Jude’s approach is honest, eclectic and raw. His full debut EP was released under the name Saint Jude in October of 2019.


                                  TRACK LISTING

                                  Side A
                                  Does
                                  Halfway
                                  Late Summer
                                  Signal Ft. Trimm
                                  Barrel Of A Gun (Side A Ending)
                                  Side B
                                  Signal Ft. Louis Culture
                                  No Angels
                                  Feedback Song
                                  What You Don’t Want Me To Be
                                  Signal Ft. Halina
                                  Rosa
                                  To Repel Ghosts

                                  Dinked Edition Bonus 7”
                                  Side A
                                  Garden Ft. Fredwave
                                  Side B
                                  Alright, All Tied

                                  Craig Armstrong

                                  As If To Nothing - 2022 Reissue

                                    Award-winning Scottish composer Craig Armstrong’s trailblazing 2002 album ‘As If To Nothing’ receives 20th anniversary first-ever vinyl release on Hydrogen Dukebox.

                                    Twenty years on from its original release, Craig Armstrong’s ‘As If To Nothing’ - his electronic/orchestral masterpiece featuring musical heavyweights Bono, Mogwai, Evan Dando, King Crimson and others - is being reissued for the first time on vinyl in a super-deluxe, super-limited edition run via Hydrogen Dukebox.

                                    Remastered at Abbey Road Studios and cut at half-speed to produce a superior sound quality, the release comes completely repackaged with reimagined artwork by award-winning designer Christopher Thomson and there's also a special 'Dinked Archive Edition' version limited to just 500 copies worldwide including a bonus 10" of a newly unearthed track from the original recording sessions.

                                    ‘As If To Nothing’, Armstrong’s second solo album following 1998’s ‘The Space Between Us’, is a timeless, groundbreaking record that marries stunning string arrangements, atmospheric electronics and contemporary popular music.

                                    Originally released on renowned UK electronic outfit Massive Attack's label Melankolic, the record captures an enduring mood and sentiment that continues to enchant listeners today, from the stirring opener ‘Ruthless Gravity’ to the euphoric closing of ‘Choral Ending’. Armstrong’s collaborative work with Massive Attack on the 1994 album ‘Protection’ is an influence that can be heard throughout ‘As If To Nothing’:
                                    “It was a very particular time musically within Britain, and the world”, he says. “To be part of the label, Melankolic, and working with Massive Attack, was a unique moment in time. They gave me real freedom to do what I wanted. The album was ahead of its time, I think - it still sounds pure and contemporary.”
                                    “A lot of younger acts have contacted me over the years to say how seminal the album has been to them. One of the great things is that people have never stopped listening to the album. To have it reissued and released on this first-ever vinyl package is a very special thing to me.”

                                    The album features a cast of luminaries including Bono on ‘Stay (Farway, So Close!’), Mogwai on ‘Miracle’ and Lemonheads’ Evan Dando ‘Wake Up In New York’, as well as producer Photek, soul singer David McAlmont, Alpha vocalist Wendy Stubbs, and Antye Greie-Fuchs, and a sample of King Crimson’s ‘Starless’ on ‘Starless II’. Praise for the album at the time of its release included Pitchfork ("Powerfully evocative and serene") and Rolling Stone ("[Armstrong] makes Bono sound like a fallen angel on a majestic remake of "Stay (Faraway, So Close!)".

                                    Through his orchestral writing, electronic compositions and wide-ranging artistic collaborations in classical and film music, Craig Armstrong’s work has received worldwide acclaim. Armstrong is widely known for composing award winning film music, having scored both Hollywood and independent films, from Peter Mullan’s directorial debut 'The Close Trilogy' to the BAFTA, Ivor Novello and Golden Globe-winning award scores for Baz Luhrmann’s 'Romeo and Juliet', 'Moulin Rouge!' and 'The Great Gatsby'.

                                    His film scoring has also featured in many other popular films including 'The Quiet American', 'Orphans', 'Love Actually', 'World Trade Centre', 'Elizabeth: The Golden Age', 'Far From The Madding Crowd', and 'Ray!', with the latter awarded a Grammy for Best Original Score. And several collaborations with Oliver Stone, ‘World Trade Center’ and ‘Snowden’.

                                    The reissue of ‘As If To Nothing’ is a fitting celebration of this exemplary album’s 20th anniversary, and an opportunity to own this key record from Armstrong’s celebrated body of work on vinyl for the first time.


                                    TRACK LISTING

                                    Side A
                                    Ruthless Gravity
                                    Wake Up In New York
                                    Miracle
                                    Amber
                                    Side B
                                    Finding Beauty
                                    Waltz
                                    Inhaler
                                    Hymn 2
                                    Side C
                                    Snow
                                    Starless II
                                    Stay
                                    Side D
                                    Niente
                                    Sea Song
                                    Let It Be Love
                                    Choral Ending



                                    Sarathy Korwar

                                    KALAK

                                      Sarathy Korwar returns with new album KALAK. The follow up to the politically charged, award-winning More Arriving is an Indo-futurist manifesto - in rhythmic step with the past and the present, it sets out to describe a route forward. It celebrates a rich South Asian culture of music and literature, which resonates with spirituality and community, while envisaging a better future from those building blocks.

                                      Recorded at Real World studios with meticulous production by New York electronic musician, DJ and producer Photay, who translates these communal rhythms and practices into a timeless and groundbreaking electronic record. There’s a spirituality and warmth at play in the polyrhythms, group vocals and melodic flourishes.

                                      The KALAK rhythm is the fulcrum upon which the 11-track project balances. After an intense lockdown induced period of reflection and meticulous note-making, Korwar boiled this down to the circular KALAK symbol which he then presented to his band before recording began. With the symbol projected on the walls in order to de-code and improvise around, Korwar had utter faith in the musicians he’d assembled and conviction in the concept.

                                      The final part of the KALAK project is realised in the cover artwork by New Delhi-based designer Sijya Gupta. Korwar and photographer friend Fabrice Bourgelle took a light sculpture of the KALAK symbol on a road trip around Southern India, through Chennai, Pondicherry and Auroville. The evocative shots appear on the cover of the various formats, with each one offering a different angle on the country, continent and culture that inspired the album.

                                      STAFF COMMENTS

                                      Barry says: A stunning selection of rhythmic counterpoints and vocal melodies, falling somewhere between deep house, traditional South Asian communal chant and jazzy funk. It's an intoxicating listen throughout. Ace.

                                      TRACK LISTING

                                      1. A1. A Recipe To Cure Historical Amnesia
                                      2. A2. To Remember (feat. Kushal Gaya)
                                      3. A3. Utopia Is A Colonial Project
                                      4. A4. Back In The Day, Things Were Not Always Simpler (feat. Noni-Mouse)
                                      5. A5. The Past Is Not Only Behind Us, But Ahead Of Us
                                      6. B1. Kal Means Yesterday And Tomorrow
                                      7. B2. Remember Begum Rokheya
                                      8. B3. That Clocks Don’t Tell But Make Time (feat. Kodo)
                                      9. B4. Remember Circles Are Better Than Lines
                                      10. B5. Remember To Look Out For The Signs
                                      11. B6. KALAK - A Means To An Unend

                                      Girls In Synthesis

                                      The Rest Is Distraction

                                        Experimental post-punk outfit Girls In Synthesis release the eagerly anticipated follow-up to 2020’s incendiary debut, ‘Now Here’s An Echo From Your Future’. Entitled ‘The Rest Is Distraction’, its mix of fractured guitar, crushing drums and bass, intense vocals and lyrical content - create as challenging a record as you will hear this year.

                                        Formed in 2016, Girls In Synthesis are John Linger (bass / vocals), Jim Cubitt (guitar / keys) and Nicole Pinto (drums). The trio’s double a-sided debut single ‘The Mound’/’Disappear’ came out in the early part of 2017, and since then they have established themselves as the most forward thinking, viscerally challenging band around with unmissable live shows that continue to excite and astound in equal measure.

                                        Recorded last year amidst the uncertainty of continuous lockdowns as a result of the global Covid-19 pandemic, ‘The Rest Is Distraction’ is far darker in content than its predecessor. Mainly exploring internal and mental struggles as opposed to external current affairs, it focuses on the claustrophobia of emotional anguish and continues to bravely delve into previously un-ventured topics. Featuring frequent collaborators funkcutter and Stanley Bad on horns and violin, respectively, two songs also see Eleni Poulou, ex-The Fall, on keyboards. The album was mixed by long-term collaborator Max Walker, and features stunning landscape photography by Bea Dewhurst. The album was mastered in France by Ayumu Matsuo.

                                        Sonically atramentous and less one dimensional than the band’s debut, ‘The Rest Is Distraction’ takes its cues from ‘Join Hands’ era Siouxsie & The Banshees, Brainiac and Crass’ ‘Christ The Album’, among others. From the first crackle of electricity on the opening track, to the heart wrenching taped voice-recording on the final outro, this LP triumphantly retains every ounce of intensity and vitality that makes Girls In Synthesis the most captivating band to emerge from the UK DIY underground in recent years. Listeners will find ‘The Rest Is Distraction’ a challenging, yet ultimately cathartic listen. Prepare yourselves for a sonic cleansing, Girls In Synthesis style.

                                        TRACK LISTING

                                        Side A
                                        1. It’s All Beginning To Change
                                        2. Watch With Mother
                                        3. Total Control
                                        4. Swallowed Pill
                                        5. Screaming
                                        6. My Husband
                                        Side B
                                        1. Cottage Industry
                                        2. Not As I Do
                                        3. Lacking Bite
                                        4. Your Prayers Have Changed
                                        5. To A Fault

                                        Abraxas

                                        Monte Carlo

                                          Carolina Faruolo (ex-Los Bitchos) and Danny Lee Blackwell (Night Beats) had been friends and mutual admirers of each other’s musical projects for years, though with Faruolo residing in the UK and Blackwell residing in Texas, their interactions were limited. Yet as was so often the case for many of us during the shelter-in-place stretches of 2020, geographic proximity wound up being a non-issue as our socializations became almost exclusively online endeavors. In this era of isolation and uncertainty, Faruolo and Blackwell invented their own private escape to Latin rhythms, colorful vistas, and smoky revelries under the project name of Abraxas. Combining their shared love of Wendy Renee, Los Destellos, doo-wop and R&B, they crafted their debut album Monte Carlo by bouncing ideas across the Atlantic.

                                          “Planet Abraxas is a world filled with jungles, mist-covered rivers, panthers lurking in the night, desolate shopping malls, Neolithic citadels and sand-worn walls,” Blackwell says of the muse behind Monte Carlo. “The nights are usually dense with fog and the air is filled with the sounds of cicadas and faraway drumming.” This visual manifestation of their sound stands in stark contrast to the environment in which the songs were written. “I remember the feeling I got the first time Danny added vocals to one of my tracks,” Faruolo recalls. “I was sitting on my sofa in rainy Manchester in the middle of winter. I pressed play and the song just made my heart jump. It instantly felt special and, more importantly, it felt like a perfect portrait of both of us.”

                                          Uruguayan-born Faruolo grew up with the tropical beats of cumbia and the psychedelic flavor of classic chicha artists, and it became her mission to infuse those sunny influences in her work as a UK musician. Blackwell’s work under the Night Beats handle involves the fusion of outlaw soul and R&B with a resourceful DIY spirit. Despite the apparent contrast in their styles, the two musicians bonded over their reverence for Selena and Sade, exemplars of the humid pulse and sultry spirit of their respective approaches. As Abraxas, their distinctive musical perspectives created a sound that encompassed the tropicalia of Os Mutantes, the scrappy songwriting of Cleaners From Venus, and the trippy production of Lee “Scratch” Perry, though the duo is quick to assert that they were finding their own distinctive voices rather than adhering to pre-existing stylistic codes and constraints. And indeed, Monte Carlo feels rooted in tradition but blossoms into its own unique timbres and vibrations.

                                          Monte Carlo opens with “Sunrise State (of Mind),” where a hypnotic cumbia beat serves as the bedrock for cosmic guitar leads, hazy choral melodies, and Blackwell’s seductive vocals. From there, the album continues its steady Latin pulse on “Mañana,” a perfect soundtrack to feverish nights in dancehalls, sipping on caipirinhas and sharing cigarettes with strangers on the dancefloor. Across its twelve tracks, Monte Carlo unfurls a myriad of exotic influences, from the Eastern melodies and guitar trills on “Sultan,” through the dub-inflected stomp and scorching fuzz of “La Estampida,” and on to the Anatolian psych-funk of album closer “Göbekli Tepe.”

                                          Blackwell recorded his contributions with the assistance of engineer Chris Maciel at his studio the 22nd Dimension in Pomona, California and Faruolo recorded her parts in Manchester, England at Brunswick Mill. While Abraxas conceived their material in bedrooms and studios six timezones apart, the music on Monte Carlo sounds like a live band in the throes of an ecstatic performance. And Abraxas plans to make the live incarnation of the band a reality when conditions allow for it. Until then, listeners can bask in the invented world of Abraxas and all its exotic and enticing splendor across the twelve tracks of Monte Carlo. Suicide Squeeze Records is proud to present Monte Carlo to the world later in 2022 on digital and vinyl formats.

                                          TRACK LISTING

                                          Side A
                                          1. Sunrise State (Of Mind)
                                          2. Mañana
                                          3. Sultan
                                          4. Monte Carlo
                                          5. La Estampida
                                          6. Hourglass
                                          Side B
                                          1. Prismatic
                                          2. Yes
                                          3. Golden
                                          4. Fuji
                                          5. Shapeshifter
                                          6. Göbekli Tepe

                                          Peel Dream Magazine

                                          Pad

                                            With his third album as Peel Dream Magazine, Joseph Stevens beckons you toward a fabulist, zig-zag world entirely of his own design. On ‘Pad’, he eschews the fuzzy glories of his indie pop past – vibraphone trembles while chamber strings take center stage. The curtains lift to reveal banjo. Chimes. Farfisa. And as he lets out a moan atop the album’s title track, it becomes clear that this is no ordinary performance. A conceptual work about losing oneself when all they have is themself, ‘Pad’ gestures towards an exciting new future for Stevens’ pop moniker by reimagining its own very existence.

                                            The follow-up to 2020’s breakthrough album ‘Agitprop Alterna’, ‘Pad’ presents a major sonic evolution for the 34 year old songwriter, who moved to Los Angeles amid the cataclysm that same year. Seventies era drum machines and synthesizers remain here, but he’s traded his buzzing offset guitar for a nylon-string, opting for a gentle baroque pop sound steeped in Bossa, folk, and its own eerie mysticism. Alongside mid century touchstones like Burt Bacharach, Stevens draws on the cultishly-beloved tinkerings of late-1960s Beach Boys, offering a surreal melange of vintage organs and found percussion, as well as Harry Nilsson’s 1970 song tapestry ‘The Point!’.

                                            And similar to ‘The Point!’, ‘Pad’ is a conceptual work reflecting on isolation and identity. The album tells a bedtime story in which Stevens’ bandmates kick him out of Peel Dream Magazine – banished and now without purpose, he sets out on a journey to rejoin the band. Misadventures ensue, such as when he joins a cult on “Self Actualization Center”, featuring friend and oft collaborator Winter. But this is also music that’s purely pleasurable in its own context, as our protagonist explores the boundaries of easy-listening with discordant textures, and bleeps and bloops that tickle. Songs like “Pictionary” chime delicately with sinister intent, evoking a palette that is outright Mod. ‘Pad’ also recalls the space age bachelor stylings of Stereolab and The High Llamas, with an occult twist that borrows from Tropicalia legends Os Mutantes.

                                            There’s an unmoored frivolity to ‘Pad’, standing in stark contrast to the severe, droning motorik of Steven’s previous albums. Overwhelmed by the political upheaval of the day, he reimagines what Van Dyke Parks once referred to as musical counter-counterculturalism, blurring the line between blithe escapism and pointed subversion. “I felt like there was no other way for me to authentically react to what was happening than to make this record”. The album also draws on library music from the same era to similar effect, conjuring the likes of Basil Kirchin and Pierro Piccioni, as well as Stevens’ newfound arranging skills, honed composing advertisement scores as a day job.

                                            While ‘Pad’ sounds beautiful, there’s a certain darkness to it as well. Stevens is addressing our general ambivalence toward the future of everything we know, informed partly by his time in New York at the onset of the pandemic. On “Hiding Out”, he laments: Wander past the Vernon Mall, and up to Queensboro Bridge. Made to feel I’m two feet small, but that’s no way to live. Ultimately, Stevens is embracing a first-thought-best-thought approach, leaning into the fantastical elements of his own life story. ‘Pad’ is as archetypal as it is strange, blurring the very lines that it asks to be defined by. Art imitates life, but life imitates art too – and the results can sometimes be unpredictable.


                                            TRACK LISTING

                                            Not In The Band
                                            Pad
                                            Pictionary
                                            Wanting And Waiting
                                            Self-Actualisation Centre
                                            Walk Around The Block
                                            Hamlet
                                            Penelope’s Suitors
                                            Hiding Out
                                            Jennifer Hindsight
                                            Reiki
                                            La Sol
                                            Message The Manager
                                            Roll In The Hay
                                            Back In The Band

                                            Breanna Barbara

                                            Nothin' But Time

                                              The Minnesota-born, Florida-raised, NYC-based artist Breanna Barbara’s 2nd album - ‘Nothin’ But Time - is a raw and immersive trip through the sounds of psychedelic rock and blues, anchored by her forceful vocals and unforgettable songwriting. Sporting a sound that feels classic and of-the-moment at the same time, Nothin’ But Time is the next chapter in Barbara’s exciting career, cementing her as an artist who’s committed to plumbing new emotional depths as she bursts through every sonic barrier put in her way.

                                              Nothin But Time arrives following Breanna’s 2016 debut Mirage Dreams, a trio of critically acclaimed singles (most recently ‘New Moon’) and a number of collaborations with legendary trip-hop vanguard Tricky. As well as joining his US touring band as lead female vocalist, Breanna also did an official rework of his 'When We Die' track and featured on the 2021 Lonely Guest album, False Idols.

                                              For the recording of Nothin’ But Time Barbara and her band returned to Nashville’s Bomb Shelter studio with Andrija Tokic (Alabama Shakes, Hurray For The Riff Raff) – with whom she recorded Mirage Dreams. With musical contributions from Jack Lawrence (The Dead Weather), Tall Juan, Derry DeBorja (Jason Isbell), and Champagne Superchillin’s Ben Trimble and Charles Garmendia, the album was put to tape in the months prior to the COVID-19 pandemic: “I’d learned so much since the last time we were in the studio that I knew I could have a stronger voice getting back into the studio again.”

                                              Nothin’ But Time reflects Barbara’s headlong journey into the world of psychedelic rock and pop, mixing these heady styles with her already established hard-driving blues-rock approach with warped theremin tones as well as celestial vibes courtesy of DeBorja’s own synth wizardry, as Barbara and her band sought out to create mind-expanding music that’s also firmly rooted in the real.

                                              There’s the organ-rich ecstasy of “You Got Me High” and the hair-raising, Cat Power-recalling intimacy of “Devil”; “Me Too” is a searing rumination on the patriarchy’s oppressiveness over punchy strings, while opener “Diamond Light” features rolling drums and miles-long guitar lines, as Barbara’s voice cuts through the atmosphere while ruminating on nostalgia and the perils of looking back. “We can look at things so beautifully, but in hindsight they have another facet to them,” she explains regarding the lyrical perspective.

                                              Over the driving beat of “Landslide,” Barbara zooms in on the ways that fate affects our daily living, and the complications that come from taking the wheel yourself. “I’ve been trying to trust my intuition more as I get older,” she explains. “I’m very impressionable, so I find it best for me to focus when there’s nothing else around to influence my decision.” Then there’s the howling title track, which takes on the heavy subject matter of facing down death itself.

                                              “Death has always been something that’s hung over my head,” Barbara ruminates while discussing the song. “The idea that we have nothing but time makes me want to throw everything in the air, but I also want to hold on to everything so tightly that I don’t want to move forward.” And ‘Nothin’ But Time’ is defined by such honest self-expressions—a fearlessness that’s at the core of her artistic outlook and overall way of being. “I’m all about not being afraid of your own voice,” Barbara states. “The way out of the hardest times is deep within you. You are enough.”


                                              TRACK LISTING

                                              Side A
                                              1) Diamond Light
                                              2) Landslide
                                              3) Nothin’ But Time
                                              4) Rise
                                              5) Me Too
                                              6) Weight Of The World
                                              Side B
                                              7) You Got Me High
                                              8) Exist
                                              9) Old Soul
                                              10) Devil
                                              11) Weaning

                                              Brutus

                                              Unison Life

                                                When times are tough, or you’re feeling worn down, you start longing for a life of total peace. A life where there are no fights, arguments or lies; where there is no such thing as disappointment and your actions have no consequences. Some might call it a “fantasy world”. Genre-jumping Belgian trio Brutus call it the “Unison Life” – a phrase that titles their third studio album. Unison Life is about all the stuff that wears you down in the first place. It’s the ugliness, the pain, and the acts of bravery that get you through it all. Beginning with a portrait of contentment and unravelling from there, the album goes into battle and asks what really counts. In their own words: “Is this Unison Life a hoax? Or a quest?”

                                                Since their formation in 2014, Brutus have made a name for themselves with their restless, emotionally raw rock that traverses the landscape of metal, punk, post-hardcore and beyond – often in the same song. The three members first met in their hometown of Leuven, where they cut their teeth playing in different local bands. Their influences are wide and varied. Drummer/vocalist Stefanie Mannaerts – who grew up above a music shop run by her family – is into a variety of genres from post-metal to electronic music. Bassist Peter Mulders is more of a punk guy, while guitarist Stijn Vanhoegaerden is into country and more melodic rock. Their diverse tastes come together through Brutus to create a sound that’s as heavy as it is unexpected, full of beauty and surprises.


                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                A1 Miles Away
                                                A2 Brave
                                                A3 Victoria
                                                A4 What Have We Done
                                                A5 Dust
                                                B1 Liar
                                                B2 Chainlife
                                                B3 Storm
                                                B4 Dreamlife
                                                B5 Desert Rain



                                                A.O. Gerber

                                                Meet Me At The Gloaming

                                                  When we pick apart the pieces of our past, and turn them over in our hands, they can feel weighted, worn, and weathered with the smog of perspective. And as we try to stitch them together, how do we navigate our own pattern when what we might’ve been taught is too binary, too black and white, a thread woven too tight?

                                                  On her new album Meet Me at the Gloaming, A.O. Gerber carefully grapples with the constraints she was taught as a child to reach for the flourishing that comes when we look past the black and white, and into the gray gauze of the in-between. “I was thinking about how damaging it can be to exist in that binary space of good and evil,” Gerber explains. “When we see everything in either/or’s, we lose the nuance and complexity that make life rich enough to be worth living.” By interlocking memory and imagination, Gerber crafts a gleaming future, where the light and the dark don’t just coexist––they create a new color entirely.

                                                  Gerber’s debut LP Another Place To Need (2020) garnered critical acclaim for its candid, orchestral ruminations on splintered relationships and the cage of overthinking. While that record took three years to complete, and saw Gerber collaborate with much of her musical community in Los Angeles and the Bay Area – including Sasami, Madeline Kenney, Marina Allen and Noah Weinman (Runnner) – Gerber stripped back the team for Meet Me at the Gloaming. Once again co-producing with Madeline Kenney, Gerber shunned the usual process of seeking constant feedback, and instead leaned into a more isolated process, later producing much of the record at home. “I found a lot of healing while making this record because I had to be the person to call the shots,” she says. “I realized that I can exist as a musician completely outside of other people’s opinions of me.” Recording at Kenney’s home studio on nights and weekends in-between their day jobs, Alex Oñate joined Gerber and Kenney on drums while Gerber also collaborated remotely with Megan Benavente on bass and Lauren Elizabeth Baba on violin and viola.

                                                  This somewhat secluded process serves as a mirror to the deeply introspective and thoughtful nature of Meet Me at the Gloaming. Here, Gerber explores her upbringing, much of which took place under the watchful gaze of a spiritual teacher who led her mother to completely uproot their lives, and move the family from Northern California to Southern Oregon. But this isn’t a scathing composition of redemption or revenge; instead, Gerber parses out her own history with care and grace. “It can be difficult to write about your childhood when you have a lot of shame around it,” she explains. “I wanted to approach it from multiple perspectives, to try to hold the complexity of formative experiences and relationships, and resist the temptation to over-simplify them.”

                                                  Through unwavering, underwater synths and gentle plucked strings, ethereal opener “Disciple Song” chronicles the hold this spiritual teacher had on Gerber’s sense of self. “Arbiter of my worthiness / Arbiter of truth / Make me into a melody / I can sing when you are through,” she laments over a patient, kaleidoscopic arrangement. It’s a taster of the more avant-garde sonic palette that permeates Meet Me at the Gloaming, where Gerber leans into her curious producer side.

                                                  On “Looking for the Right Things,” the production thrives under an electro-pop blanket, as bright percussion and sharp, vivid keys give rise to Gerber’s warm, velvet-smooth vocal. “I just wanna feel clean / I’m missing someone I knew once / Now she doesn’t exist,” she croons,
                                                  charting the push-and-pull between wanting to be good, and the seeming impossibility of it. We are always at odds with ourselves, and “Looking for the Right Things,” peels back the desire to attain this idea of goodness while reckoning with the reality of our humanness, and the beauty of our imperfections. “As much as I’d like to make relationships as simple as figuring out how to be ‘good’ and that being enough, it’s always messier than that.”

                                                  Later, “Hunger” sees Gerber pick apart the opposing forces of desire and restriction through soft-yet-persistent synths and cloud-reaching riffs. “I’ve spent so much of my life vacillating between these polarities, craving and negating,” she says. “Both states of being are a hunger for something, and I like to think there’s a reality where pleasure and accountability to yourself and others can coexist.” On the guitar-led gentle anthem “For,” Gerber wrestles yet ultimately welcomes the darker parts of her personality. Inspired by her experience with a struggling friend, Gerber admits that while we can recognize and see ourselves in another’s pain, we can also acknowledge our limitations in showing up for them, and how we may not feel able to help them through it.

                                                  Closer “Only Mystery,” brings Meet Me at the Gloaming full circle, as Gerber unpacks her complex relationship with her father. Leaning into the eclectic sonic landscape of the album, fluttering strings dance alongside finger-picked guitar, while diaphanous synths coat lyrics of loneliness and betrayal. “Asking where you were / In the years / I called our backyard home” she sings, pointing to her solitary experience as a child. “I’m tenderly trying to meet someone as they are, while carrying the baggage of a life and past disappointments,” she says. “It’s exploring that complexity; of looking at this person who I barely know and who barely knows me, recognizing that there’s still this part of me that just wants to be seen as good, as having done my best, and hoping that’s good enough.”

                                                  Meet Me at the Gloaming is certainly an album that pierces grief head-on but it’s not without hope or certainty. Like curtains strong enough to block the view, but thin enough to let in the light, Gerber is reclaiming the meaning of goodness, where the harsh overwhelming brightness is dimmed to a beautiful, iridescent blue. During the gloaming we are between two spaces, two worlds, two selves and it’s here that we can fully embrace everything that we are.

                                                  Let us remember how dark the beginning of the day is ~ Maggie Smith


                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                  Side A
                                                  1. Disciple Song
                                                  2. Walk In The Dark
                                                  3. Looking For The Right Things
                                                  4. You Got It Right
                                                  5. Mount Washington Phone Company
                                                  Side B
                                                  1. Hunger
                                                  2. For
                                                  3. Just As A Child
                                                  4. Noon Of Love
                                                  5. PFS
                                                  6. What Are You Reading?
                                                  7. Only Mystery

                                                  Turnover

                                                  Myself In The Way

                                                    Myself in the Way is the band’s fifth full-length album, and it follows their first pause in consistent touring in almost 10 years. While the world was shut down, Turnover’s four bandmates spent time meditating, painting, volunteer firefighting, skateboarding, and working in state parks - deepening interests and growing roots in places they hadn’t been able to while living life on the road for so long.

                                                    Over 18 months, these individual experiences acted as the soil in which Myself in the Way grew into Turnover’s next album. Returning to Pennsylvania to track with longtime friend and producer Will Yip, vocalist & guitarist Austin Getz cites Quincy Jones, Chic, and Dark Side of the Moon as influences in the way that songs like the infectiously-rhythmic “Ain’t Love Heavy” and the trippy, disorienting “Tears of Change” feel wider, deeper and more whole than anything in the band’s catalog to date. Drummer Casey Getz’ new skills behind the drum set that open up songs on Myself in the Way to more improvisation and fluidity, pairing well with bassist Dan Dempsey’s infectious bass-lines and Nick Rayfield’s sharpened guitar and piano playing.

                                                    On Myself in the Way, Turnover’s creative vision takes center-stage in every way. The album’s cover art - a sparkling array of multicolored gems scattered across a neutral canvas - was painted during lockdown by Dempsey. Music videos for the record were directed and filmed by the band, including the dizzy “Wait Too Long” video shot on retreat in upstate New York with friends and collaborators Kyle Lamb and Blair Kemp. Austin’s increased involvement on the production side earned him his first-ever co-producer credit, and Nick Rayfield contributed a new perspective as a songwriter for the first time in the recording process. For a band that has never stopped evolving, Turnover has always remained authentic with every release. Myself in the Way is an achievement that ties new and exciting ideas in with the band’s unique artistic ambition. 


                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                    Side A
                                                    1. Stone Station
                                                    2. Tears Of Change
                                                    3. Myself In The Way Feat. Brendan Yates
                                                    4. Wait Too Long
                                                    5. People That We Know
                                                    6. Mountains Made Of Clouds
                                                    Side B
                                                    1. Ain’t Love Heavy Feat. Bre Morell
                                                    2. Pleasures Galore
                                                    3. Stone Station Reprise
                                                    4. Fantasy
                                                    5. Queen In The River
                                                    6. Bored Of God / Orlando

                                                    PVA

                                                    Blush

                                                      The eleven blistering tracks from the trio, made up of Ella Harris and Josh Baxter (who share lead vocals as well as handling synths, guitars and production) alongside drummer and percussionist Louis Satchell, are made from a formula of acid, disco, blistering synths, the release of the dancefloor and cathartic sprechgesang post-punk.

                                                      On their debut album PVA carry that same energy from the live circuit, while also building out a holistic world full of texture and heart. 'Blush' is rich with industrial-sized beats that pack a heavyweight punch, jagged punk spirit, and moments of hushed contemplation from Harris’ poetic lyrics.

                                                      It sprints tirelessly throughout, linking influences including Portishead, PC Music, Laurie Anderson, and cult rave-pop duo The Pom-Poms with ease. The album was produced by the band alongside friends Ben Romans-Hopcraft (Warmduscher) and Jamie Neville (Pumarosa) over a two week period at Neville’s home studio in South London. They then mixed the record at FOLD, the club hidden away on a trading estate in East London.

                                                      One place intimate, another industrial; this is PVA’s world.

                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                      A1. Untethered
                                                      A2. Kim
                                                      A3. Hero Man
                                                      A4. Interlude
                                                      A5. Bunker
                                                      A6. Comfort Eating
                                                      B1. The Individual
                                                      B2. Bad Dad
                                                      B3. Transit
                                                      B4. Seven (feat. Tony Njoku) 

                                                      Aoife Nessa Frances

                                                      Protector

                                                        In spring of 2020, Aoife Nessa Frances moved out of the city for the first time in her life. After packing up her things in Dublin, she moved to rural County Clare on the west coast of Ireland, and there, amidst the stillness, she worked on the songs that would become her second album, Protector. The resulting body of work deftly juxtaposes golden hours and arguments, affection and alienation, and above all marks a crucial period of her life that was transformative and left her wiser.

                                                        "I might have been running away from my problems," she admits. "I was disconnected from myself and from nature, but I found peace far away from the city, where there were no distractions. I isolated myself with nothing to do but make music.” Writing Protector provided Frances an essential sounding board for this journey. "I felt a growing inner strength that guided me through the making of this album. It was like sculpting with my eyes closed, this intense sense of self-preservation leading me and growing with each song I wrote. When I started, I didn't recognise myself. With each song, I became more human.”

                                                        Aoife spent that summer with her dad and two sisters. “It was a very special time for my family as we had never been that tight knit before,” she says, “and we all became very close…driving the country roads and swimming in the Atlantic Ocean and lakes of Clare. I had one CD in my car: Jim Sullivan’s UFO and we listened to it over and over again.” Like many people in their late twenties shaking off youthful rebelliousness, Frances experienced a solidification of familial ties like never before, and felt the formation of a protective, impenetrable shell. “For me, Protector acknowledges the part of myself that steers me towards a brighter path. The almost psychotropic power of nature gave me a connection I never felt before. As the countryside seeped into me and lines of communication opened up with my family, I developed an ability to perceive myself and my choices within an expanded world.”

                                                        Protector builds pastoral landscapes through light flourishes and open spaces. Songs float along effortlessly, remaining anchored by Frances’ deep voice. Contemplative tempos tug along atmospheric synths, minimal bass, and shimmering guitar notes, conveying a serenity like early morning. Frances found that the noiselessness allowed her, at long last, to listen to herself. “I got up every day before sunrise and took my guitar to a place where nobody could hear me,” she discloses. “These songs were written in the magic hour before the world wakes up.”

                                                        Recording took place in a small house in County Kerry, at the foothills of the Annascaul, along with Brendan Jenkinson (producer, keys, bass, synth, clarinet) and Brendan Doherty (drums). “We’d wake up early every day and swim at Inch Beach before making music,” Frances describes. “This ritual was crucial for our process. There was an unexplainable joy happening between the three of us.” The arrangements grew with later contributions from Ailbhe Nic Oiroictaigh (strings), Meabh McKenna (harp), and Conor O’Brien (horns). No matter how it expanded in scope and involvement, Frances never let it stray from a central focus on deep truths. “I wanted my voice to be as up front and dry as possible, to create a sense of raw and powerful vulnerability, like Serge Gainsbourg’s ‘Histoire de Melody Nelson’ where the voice feels right in front of you.”

                                                        Across eight songs, Frances found innovative ways to project her intentions. “Emptiness Follows” carries a striking sense of grace, the playfulness of the track’s instrumentation contrast lyrics about friends drifting apart (“the weight of the water, it holds you and tortures time away from you”). “Soft Lines,” spans weightless and brooding, the shimmer of the musical backdrop like a low-settled fog obscuring one’s way, as Frances sings of the illusion of idealized love (“All that I’d give for a life by your side”). “Chariot” is at the core of the record, a powerful testament to the strength and bonds of family and friendships.

                                                        With Protector, Frances has delivered a glowing act of restoration, informed by the power of connection. The songs find the resonance in the hum of life, trapping glimpses of light and crystalizing them into new modes of being. Each track is a nuanced take on a different subject. “Writing and recording this album was a spiritual experience. I experienced love for my family on a level I didn’t know existed, while slowly putting myself back together and watching the ‘protector’ in me grow much bigger.”


                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                        Side A
                                                        A1 Way To Say Goodbye
                                                        A2 This Still Life
                                                        A3 Emptiness Follows
                                                        A4 Only Child
                                                        Side B
                                                        B1 Chariot
                                                        B2 Back To Earth
                                                        B3 Soft Lines
                                                        B4 Day Out Of Time

                                                        Lande Hekt

                                                        House Without A View

                                                          Lande Hekt’s natural state of being is in the writing of a song. Having crafted politically aware, heart-on-sleeve, punchy yet tender, punk-flecked songs with her band Muncie Girls, Lande turned her hand to an even more personal songwriting approach as she embarked on writing a solo record - 2021’s ‘Going to Hell’. The debut full-length documented her experience coming out as gay. It set out her stall as a solo artist with supreme storytelling abilities and a knack for understatedly luminous melodies. Lande’s music sits beautifully alongside such essential artists as The Wedding Present, The Sundays, The Replacements, Sleeper and Sharon Van Etten

                                                          With her debut album barely a year old, 2022 sees Lande armed with a whole new collection of song-form vignettes and musings on her life and experiences. Kicking off where the last record left off, the opening track of new album ‘House Without a View’ is ‘Half With You’ which “is about growing into yourself as a queer person, and enjoying who you are after not enjoying it for so long,” says Lande. ‘Cut My Hair’ is about how her relationship with her gender has changed over the last few years, becoming more comfortable in herself and understanding more about what makes her happy. “It’s also about how easy it is to not talk to people when you’re struggling, which is something I did for a long time,” admits Lande.

                                                          The title track of ‘House Without a View’ deals with childhood trauma and how events of our formative years “affect us so much into our adult lives and are intrinsic to our personalities and the way we cope (or don’t) with life and relationships,” says Lande. Although there’s darkness and sadness within the record, there’s also some shining beacons of positivity and a light-hearted side, albeit with a side of frustration. ‘Lola’ was written about Lande’s cat shortly after she came to live with her and her girlfriend. “She’s the first pet I’ve ever had and I wasn’t quite ready for how hard it would be to not be able to verbally communicate with her. I worried constantly that she was depressed because all she did was sleep, but my girlfriend assured me that that was regular cat behaviour.”

                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                          Half With You
                                                          Backstreet Snow
                                                          Cut My Hair
                                                          Gay Space Cadets
                                                          Always Hurt
                                                          House Without A View
                                                          Ground Shaking
                                                          What Could I Sell
                                                          Lola
                                                          Take A Break
                                                          First Girlfriend

                                                          Elaine Howley

                                                          The Distance Between Heart And Mouth

                                                            Touch Sensitive Records proudly presents the Cork-based musician Elaine Howley’s debut solo album The Distance Between Heart and Mouth. The product of an audio diary kept on a 4 track cassette machine throughout 2019 and 2020, the album recreates the intimacy of a radio show filled with Howley’s favourite sounds, palettes, and textures; effortlessly joining the dots between pop and experimentation, summoning the kaleidoscopic world of Trish Keenan & Broadcast, the bruised lo-fi soul of Tirzah and the dubbed-out blues of Leslie Winer. Over nine patient, spontaneous self-recorded and produced tracks, Elaine Howley traces the outline of a small space that could be considered one of the longest journeys to be taken - The Distance Between Heart And Mouth.

                                                            As a member of Crevice, Howlbux and, perhaps most notably, psychedelic rock group The Altered Hours, Elaine Howley is renowned as a singular voice in the Irish underground. The Distance Between Heart and Mouth is her most personal statement to date. “I was thinking a lot about the themes of silencing and communication,” she explains. “My voice and a lot of my feelings were buried and I wanted to push that out using music. That is the intention of this album - trying to be brave enough to share and to open up; along with the internal and external barriers that exist when it comes to doing that."

                                                            The Distance Between Heart and Mouth is the product of an audio diary kept on a 4 track cassette machine throughout 2019 and 2020. Pulling on formative teenage musical influences alongside memories of a childhood spent home-recording Longwave 252 transmissions, Howley recreates the intimacy of a radio show filled with her favourite sounds, pallets, and textures; effortlessly joining the dots between pop and experimentation. "I brought all those early influences along with me. It was a private time to enjoy music - listening to my Walkman or making mixtapes. I hear the roots of the sounds I am drawn to beginning then. I found myself returning to, and recreating something of that time, for this record."

                                                            The daily sit-down at her tape machine became an almost ritualistic experience over this period as Howley both experimented in sound and worked through her own vulnerabilities. “I wasn't burdening anyone or adding pressure to myself. I've always found music cathartic but this felt like a deeper level for me”. This release can be tangibly felt in lead single ‘Silent Talk’. “That track is about the urge to run and not share parts of myself but also about continuing to try to do that and about the patience people can show in waiting for me.” On second track ‘Autumn Speak’, we fully step into the album’s journey through the transition of Howley’s favourite season. “I was thinking about how resistance to decay through self preservation disrupts the process but cannot stop it and only serves to distort and delay. It’s a celebration of endings and allowing change to occur.” Such internal conflicts and strivings are captured sonically throughout the album as echoes and delays whirl into an endless expanse and samples run backwards and onwards.

                                                            Themes regarding memory are also written throughout, particularly in ‘Song For Mary Black’, previously issued on Touch Sensitive’s ‘Wacker That’ compilation. “Mary Black was the first concert I saw and it had a huge impression on me. Growing up, I was a fan of the ‘A Woman’s Heart’ compilation of amazing Irish female voices. It made music feel closer to me than it had previously; it was local and it felt tangible. It reminded me of my Mam and Aunts.” Alongside those early inspiring voices and the defining sounds of her teenage years, we can hear the dubbed-out blues of Leslie Winer, the kaleidoscopic world of Trish Keenan & Broadcast, and the bruised lo-fi soul of Tirzah. Over nine tracks, Elaine Howley traces the outline of a small space that can be considered one of the longest journeys to be taken - The Distance Between Heart And Mouth

                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                            Side A
                                                            1. Silent Talk
                                                            2. Autumn Speak
                                                            3. Archeological Longing
                                                            4. See Saw Seen
                                                            5. To The Test

                                                            Side B

                                                            6. Buried Way Out
                                                            7. Person Count
                                                            8. Song For Mary Black
                                                            9. SoSo

                                                            Grave Goods

                                                            Tuesday. Nothing Exists

                                                              London and Dublin based women-led independent label Tulle are back with 'Tuesday. Nothing Exists' - the debut album from three-piece Grave Goods.

                                                              Featuring current and former members of PINS, Girls Names and September Girls, the Sartre-rock trio are based between Manchester, Belfast and Dublin. Taking influence from early post-punk and minimalist rock, Grave Goods music has been described as urgent and demanding, claustrophobic yet spacious - guaranteed to grab your attention. Their influences come from early post-punk and minimalist rock, and their music is visceral and angular, set against a lyrical backdrop of existential ennui.

                                                              Their first track released 'Juice' was featured on A Litany of Failures Volume III, and in December 2021 they released new single 'Phonetic Fetish'. This highly anticipated debut full-length 'Tuesday. Nothing Exists' was recorded at Invada studios, Bristol.

                                                              STAFF COMMENTS

                                                              Liam says: Just the phrase "Debut album from current and former members of PINS, Girls Names and September Girls" pretty much sells this record itself. At times sparse, at others visceral and snarling, Grave Goods' 'Tuesday, Nothing Exists' is for those hankering for some proper gnarly post-punk.

                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                              Side A
                                                              Come
                                                              Source
                                                              Miles
                                                              Side B
                                                              None
                                                              Story
                                                              Eneeway
                                                              Die 

                                                              Thee Sacred Souls

                                                              Thee Sacred Souls

                                                                For Thee Sacred Souls, the first time is often the charm. The band’s first club dates led to a record deal with the revered Daptone label; their first singles racked up more than ten million streams in a year and garnered attention from Billboard, Rolling Stone, and KCRW; and their first fans included the likes of Gary Clark Jr., The Black Pumas, Princess Nokia, and Timbaland. Now, the breakout San Diego trio is ready to deliver yet another landmark first with the release of their self-titled debut on Daptone records.

                                                                “Every step of the way has just been so organic,” says drummer Alex Garcia. “Things just seem to happen naturally when the three of us get together.”

                                                                Indeed, there’s something inevitable about the sound of Thee Sacred Souls, as if Garcia and his bandmates—bassist Sal Samano and singer Josh Lane—have been playing together for a lifetime already. Produced by Bosco Mann (aka Daptone co-founder Gabriel Roth), Thee Sacred Souls is a warm and textured record, mixing the easygoing grace of sweet ’60s soul with the grit and groove of early ’70s R&B, and the performances are utterly intoxicating, with Lane’s weightless vocals anchored by the rhythm section’s deep pocket and infectious chemistry.

                                                                Hints of Chicano, Philly, Chicago, Memphis and even Panama soul turn up here, and while it’s tempting to toss around labels like “retro” with a deliberately analog collection like this, there’s also something distinctly modern about the band that defies easy categorization, a rawness and a sincerity that transcends time and place.


                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                Can I Call You Rose
                                                                Lady Love
                                                                Easier Said Than Done
                                                                Overflowing
                                                                A Trade Of Hearts
                                                                Weak For Your Love
                                                                Future Lover
                                                                Sorrow For Tomorrow
                                                                For Now
                                                                Once You Know (THEN You'll Know)
                                                                Happy And Well
                                                                Love Comes Easy

                                                                TSHA

                                                                Capricorn Sun

                                                                  TSHA returns to Ninja Tune with her long-awaited debut album ‘Capricorn Sun’. Recorded over the past two years, the record delivers on the promise of her previous EP’s and Singles with 12 tracks that perfectly encapsulate the emotive blend of underground electronic and hook-laden pop sensibilities that have led to her being one of the most talked about new artists of the past few years. From gracing the front cover of high-profile magazines, appearing on numerous billboards, being included in flagship playlists and programmes by multiple streaming services and being placed on countless ‘best of’ & ‘one to watch’ lists, alongside high-praise from across the music press and radio – TSHA shows no sign of slowing down in 2022.

                                                                  ‘Capricorn Sun’ is both a statement of where she is right now as an artist and producer, but also a reflection of time she spent writing and recording the album, and the impact of global events, familial upheaval and personal struggles during that period. 

                                                                  As you move through the album’s remaining tracks there are noticeable shifts across moods and emotions - ranging from the more upbeat and positive “The Light” and “OnlyL” through to moodier cuts like “Anxious Mind” — a personal highlight of TSHA’s — and the brooding “Dancing In The Shadows”, both of which feature vocalist Clementine Douglas. Other tracks hold significance for particular points in TSHA’s life, such as the previously released single “Sister”, written during lockdown after finding out she had an older half sister via her estranged father, and “Water” which picks up on TSHA’s love of the Malian Griot singing traditions (as evidenced on previous single “Demba ft. Trio Da Kali”) and features Grammy-winning vocalist Oumou Sangaré.

                                                                  As a Capricorn herself, TSHA was initially drawn to the tales of ancient Greek mythology that told of a creature with the body of a goat and tail of a fish, hinting at the dual nature of the sign and the idea of having two distinct sides to a personality. “I like to identify with some of the positive characteristics of a Capricorn: the hardiness and the work ethic… but also the sensitivity,” she explains. “Naming the album ‘Capricorn Sun’ was a good way of saying ‘this is me’”. It’s a theme that carries through the album’s creative and artwork, which features several pygmy goats that are “a visual representation of the different parts of me, like the songs on the album represent different parts of me,” says TSHA.

                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                  Barry says: Stalwart label Ninja Tune release their latest outing, this time from TSHA, with her breathtaking debut, 'Capricorn Sun'. It's a wonderful melting pot of bright electronica, shimmering dub and UKG, topped with breakbeat vocals and housey key stabs. A wonderfully melodic but undeniably deep journey.

                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                  1. Galdem (Intro)
                                                                  2. The Light
                                                                  3. OnlyL (feat. NIMMO)
                                                                  4. Water (feat. Oumou Sangaré)
                                                                  5. Dancing In The Shadows (feat. Clementine Douglas)
                                                                  6. Giving Up (feat. Mafro) **
                                                                  7. Anxious Mind (feat. Clementine Douglas)
                                                                  8. Time
                                                                  9. Power
                                                                  10. Running
                                                                  11. Sister
                                                                  12. Nala (Outro)

                                                                  Rachael Dadd

                                                                  Kaleidoscope

                                                                    Wildly creative free-form songwriter Rachael Dadd releases her brand new studio album ‘Kaleidoscope’ via Memphis Industries and follows 2019’s 'Flux', which was released to much acclaim and which she was touring when the pandemic struck.

                                                                    Like so many people disconnected from their communities and struggling through the lockdowns, Rachael Dadd turned inwards, seeking escape through music and connection through song writing, and her hope is that when people listen to ‘Kaleidoscope' “they will feel held and find space to breathe, grieve and celebrate.”

                                                                    “This album is a lot more honest and personal than ‘Flux'” she shares, “but I feel the songs are universal as they are largely rooted in truth and love. If I had to pick a favourite album it would be this one because of the magical rekindling of human connection when me and my band got back in a room together again. All that magic went into these songs."

                                                                    Co-produced "intuitively, boldly, and playfully" by Rachael and Rob Pemberton (The Staves, Emily Barker, Maja Lena), ‘Kaleidoscope’ includes musical collaborators such as Maja Lena (Low Chimes), long-time collaborator Emma Gatrill (Willy Mason), Alex Heane (bass), Charlotte West (synths), Alex Garden (strings) and ‘Flux’ producer Marcus Hamblett (Villagers, James Holden, The Staves), giving the record "just the right colour combination, just the right pattern of shapes, plenty of space where needed and finally landing in a sound world that feels fresh and open and true” reflects Rachael.

                                                                    Japanese aesthetics absorbed from her time spent living there are subconsciously woven into Rachael’s songs. "I first stepped foot in Tokyo in 2008, sparked by the adventure of such a rich and different culture and later on I lived on a small island and experienced an appealing and balanced way of life: the aesthetics, the art and the traditions,” she recalls. “There was a lot of caring for each other, a lot of gentleness, and a lot of simple living in harmony with nature. Japan left its cultural mark on me and is now part of my inner world and I’m sure this comes out with the words and music I write”.

                                                                    “But overall” Rachael explains “this is an album of homecoming and reconnecting to my own truth, to my community here, to the earthy land that I love and to the sky that I know.”

                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                    Side A
                                                                    Children Of The Galaxy
                                                                    Footsteps
                                                                    Moon Sails
                                                                    Ox
                                                                    Ghost
                                                                    Side B
                                                                    River Spirit
                                                                    Heads Down
                                                                    For Honey And Ray
                                                                    White Snow
                                                                    Swift
                                                                    Join The Dots

                                                                    Dinked Edition Bonus CD
                                                                    The Bridge (feat Kate Stables – This Is The Kit)
                                                                    Fronds
                                                                    Crystalizing In Time
                                                                    Fences (feat Rozi Plain)

                                                                    Jesca Hoop

                                                                    Order Of Romance

                                                                      Jesca Hoop returns with her sixth album, Order of Romance, a record that fortifies her position as one of the most striking and original voices in contemporary music. Order of Romance is Hoop's most intricate and finely balanced album to date, one that draws on classic song writing, recalling anything from Gershwin to Paul Simon, but creating something that is unmistakably, indelibly Jesca Hoop. It is a deep dive into craft. As Jesca says “I set out to mature as a writer, to further clarity my voice and stance, through melodies and phrases only I can construct. Order of Romance feels like every person, character, or artist, I ever was over the many seasons of my life was handed an instrument to play across the songs.”

                                                                      In the summer of 2021, Hoop once again ventured south from her adopted home of Manchester to Bristol to team up with producer John Parish (PJ Harvey, Aldous Harding), her collaborator for 2019’s Stonechild. This time additional assistance came from in Jess Vernon (This is the Kit) to arrange for a four-piece horn and woodwind quintet. Legendary drummer Seb Rochford lent his skills, John Thorne plays the bass and Chloe Foy and Rachel Rimmer were enlisted to deliver Hoop’s signature vocal arrangements. The result is a fruitful marriage of song craft and arrangement, brimming with a cinematic charm and lyrical wit that signify a new chapter full of new life for an artist who knows her mind, her heart and voice well enough to trust them in uncharted territory.

                                                                      Order of Romance then is a complete work that demands close attention, an active listen, a filagree that’s apparent lightness of touch belies a serious intent. Themes of empathy and friendship, intertwine with a clear eyed and moralistic poetry on subjects such as gun control, religious and political cults, and climate change.

                                                                      Order of Romance is perhaps ultimately an exploration of the endless balance act of being a ‘Human Being’, an approach and examination of some of the biggest theme and issues of our time through the doorway of the personal, a way finding meaning and some kind of faith in a world where so much is disconnected and discordant. As she states “I seek out reflection and resolve in my songs. I find out who I am in a sense. For a few minutes, I can exist in nature at my full potential, saying just what I mean, in balance, in awe, in wonder and in full force. As a moral agent, a mode I can’t seem to avoid, my writing is time taken to observe and ask questions. I find humour in our predicament. I find danger in the reckoning. I find faith despite our sorry state and I feel connection when I draw it through my voice. I stand my ground and through the music and point inevitably towards compassion”.

                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                      Side A
                                                                      1. Sudden Light
                                                                      2. I Was Just 14
                                                                      3. Hatred Has A Mother
                                                                      4. One Way Mirror
                                                                      5. Silent Extinction
                                                                      Side B
                                                                      6. 7lbs Of Pressure
                                                                      7. Sioux Falls
                                                                      8. Like I Am Time
                                                                      9. Firestorm
                                                                      10. Lyre Bird

                                                                      Tim Burgess

                                                                      Typical Music

                                                                        Has there been a busier musician over the last two years? A more prolific artist? More creative? More heroic?

                                                                        Tim Burgess – as self-effacing a band leader, solo star, label runner, repeat memoirist and all-round caffeinated can-do kid as you’ll find – would certainly shrink from the latter accolade. “A hero??” he’d likely mutter with a shake of his boyish mop. “For playing some records?”

                                                                        Yes, Tim, we would say that. And not just because with the May 2020, mid-lockdown appearance of I Love The New Sky, his fifth solo album, he undauntedly pushed on with releasing an album that brought much-needed sunshine to a world enveloped in gloom.

                                                                        Over the course of the first year of the pandemic, Tim’s Twitter Listening Parties were a lifeline to many. At a time when the world shut down, we all retreated indoors, alone, and cancelled gigs were the least of our worries, the North Country Boy’s idea of utilising social media to unite us round a digital turntable was inspired.

                                                                        Meanwhile, Burgess was writing. And writing. And writing. From September 2020 to summer 2021, ideas poured out of Burgess. He’d been encouraged by Simon Raymonde, boss of his record label Bella Union ¬– and, of course, a former Cocteau Twin. He applied a musician’s logic: if you can’t tour your last album, write a new one. Then, when you can tour again, you’ll have two albums’ worth of songs to play.

                                                                        Well, now, arguably, Burgess has three albums’ worth of songs to perform live. Typical Music is a 22-track double, a blockbuster set of songs that are as expansive and diverse as they are rich. As fun as they are funky. That embrace heartache and love. That run the gamut, from ABBA (in the shape of guest vocalist Pearl Charles, whose own brilliant Magic Mirror album is the sound of the magic Swedes doin' disco) to Zappa (free-form studio experimentation is go!)


                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                        Side A
                                                                        1 Here Comes The Weekend
                                                                        2 Curiosity
                                                                        3 Time That We Call Time
                                                                        4 Flamingo
                                                                        5 Revenge Through Art
                                                                        6 Kinectic Connection
                                                                        Side B
                                                                        1 Typical Music
                                                                        2 Take Me With You
                                                                        3 After This
                                                                        4 The Centre Of Me (Is A Symphony Of You)
                                                                        5 When I See You
                                                                        Side C
                                                                        1 Magic Rising
                                                                        2 Tender Hooks
                                                                        3 L.O.S.T Lost / Will You Take A Look At My Hand Please
                                                                        4 A Bloody Nose
                                                                        5 In May
                                                                        Side D
                                                                        1 Slacker (Than I've Ever Been)
                                                                        2 View From Above
                                                                        3 A Quarter To Eight
                                                                        4 Sooner Than Yesterday
                                                                        5 Sure Enough
                                                                        6 What's Meant For You Won't Pass By You

                                                                        Laundromat

                                                                        En Bloc - 3 EP Collection

                                                                          Laundromat (AKA Toby Hayes) announces En Bloc - 3 EP Collection - a vinyl release encompassing the three Laundromat EPs released to date.

                                                                          Laundromat has built a reputation over the previous twelve months as an innovative and profoundly skilled songwriter, his languid style and deftly created songs earned him support from the likes Steve Lamacq, Lauren Laverne, Marc Riley, DIY, Dork, Loud & Quiet among others. Red, Blue and Green - the 3 EPs - all released to critical acclaim, were mixed and co-produced by Tom Andrews (alongside Hayes). Recent single Combo was recently added to the playlist at BBC 6Music after extensive support at the station. Laundromat is currently writing his debut album.

                                                                          On the new collection, Laundromat says "These nine tracks were written (really slowly) over a number of years, and although they’ve been out a while now, it's massively cathartic to release them as this 3 EP collection. Mainly because despite the fact that this isn’t an ‘album’ release, it was certainly written as one. So to finally deliver these tunes in the order that they were meant to be listened to feels real good I have to admit. ‘En Bloc’ - 3 EP Collection also includes a number of segue pieces that link the songs together - the idea being that this slice of work would be released as two continuous chunks of sound, i.e - side 1 and side 2. A nice big feast for the ears." Inspired by a broad range of influences including Kim Deal, Broadcast, Jaki Liebezeit, Jason Albertini, Madlib and Gonjasufi, Hayes also cites film as a huge source of intrigue: "I find a lot of inspiration in film - Repo Man (1984), Deep End (1970), Punch-drunk Love (2002), and Alice in the Cities (1974) in particular."

                                                                          Lyrically, the project explores the end of the world, binge drinking, social anhedonia, nostalgia, as well as the time Hayes got ‘catfished’ - for nearly 7 years.


                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                          1. Flat Planet
                                                                          2. Off
                                                                          3. Slow Clap
                                                                          4. Humans
                                                                          5. En Bloc
                                                                          6. Nein
                                                                          7. Bug Eyed
                                                                          8. Bureau De Fatigue
                                                                          9. Milky

                                                                          Bonus Dinked Edition 7” Tracklisting:
                                                                          A. Laundromat - Flat Planet (Bothelbows X MIIIKE Remix)
                                                                          B. Laundromat – Bureau De Fatigue (Marcus Hamblett Remix)

                                                                          Pye Corner Audio

                                                                          Let's Emerge!

                                                                            Pye Corner Audio releases a new album, 'Let’s Emerge!', for Sonic Cathedral. It’s his first studio outing for the label following the acclaimed live recording 'Social Dissonance', which was released earlier this year, and it features Ride guitarist Andy Bell playing on five of its ten tracks.

                                                                            From the first glimpse of the artwork to the first note of the music it’s a marked deviation from Pye Corner Audio’s more traditional shadowy sounds. Whereas his last outing for Ghost Box (2021’s 'Entangled Routes') was inspired by the underground fungal pathways through which plants communicate, this one is very much above ground, bathed in sunlight and acid-bright psychedelia. “This is a departure to sunnier climes, but a departure nonetheless,” says Pye Corner Audio, aka Martin Jenkins. “It’s something that I’d been thinking about for a while. I try to tailor my work slightly differently for the various labels that I work with, and this seems to fit nicely with Sonic Cathedral’s ethos.”

                                                                            Designer Marc Jones’ ultra vivid artwork consciously references the likes of LFO, Spacemen 3 and the early output of Stereolab. “I think it mixes together many of my earliest influences,” explains Martin. “I’ve been a long-time fan of Spacemen 3 and Stereolab. Their moments of repetition and drone have always seeped into what I’ve tried to create. “I was living in a small apartment and I’d stripped down my studio set-up when I was recording this album. This enabled me to focus on a few key pieces of equipment and explore them fully.” The recordings were fleshed out by Andy Bell, who Martin first met at the Sonic Cathedral 15th birthday party at The Social in London back in 2019 – the same show that became the live album 'Social Dissonance'. “New alliances were formed and friendships made in that basement in Little Portland Street,” recalls Martin. “When I met Andy, we agreed that we needed to work together in some way. After I’d remixed a few tracks from his album 'The View From Halfway Down', he kindly repaid the favour.”

                                                                            The end results are incredible, from the first stirrings of opener ‘De-Hibernate’, via the glorious ‘Haze Loops’ and ‘Saturation Point’, the album slowly but surely awakens, blinking and feeling its way into the light. It all culminates in the epic closing track ‘Warmth Of The Sun’ which, with its vocal harmonies and acid breakdown, is seven and a half minutes of pure release. “That one’s about life’s simple pleasures,” concludes Martin. “The Beach Boys, tremolo guitars, infinite drones, Spacemen 3. Let’s emerge from this darkened era and feel the ‘Warmth Of The Sun’. “The last few years have seen huge changes, both personally and in a wider perspective. The album title is a reaction to this, a collective (tentative) sigh of relief. Here’s to new beginnings and a sense of hope.”


                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                            Barry says: I love Pye Corner Audio, always have. We had Andy Bell in the shop a couple months back and he was telling us he'd worked with Martin on some music but I did NOT expect this. Gorgeous, plaintive washes of synth and reverbed guitar, echoes of melody within the expansive, electronic atmospheres. A stunning first one for the great Sonic Cathedral.

                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                            Side A
                                                                            1. De-Hibernate
                                                                            2. Lyracal
                                                                            3. Does It Go Dark?
                                                                            4. Haze Loops
                                                                            5. Let’s Emerge Part One
                                                                            Side B
                                                                            1. Saturation Point
                                                                            2. Sun Stroke
                                                                            3. Let’s Emerge Part Two
                                                                            4. Luminescence
                                                                            5. Warmth Of The Sun

                                                                            Companion

                                                                            Second Day Of Spring

                                                                              At just 23-years-old, identical twin sisters Sophia and Jo Babb had faced a decade of darkness. Then, as Companion, they built lighthouses. With their debut album Second Day of Spring, the duo arrive at the start of a blooming new season, holding a work that softly glows with a sincerity, vulnerability, and hopefulness that they fought hard to find along their way. “A lot of this album is rooted in healing from grief and familial hurt,” says Sophia. “There are songs about marriage and healing from mistrust. Family ties that have been broken.” Second Day of Spring introduces two brilliant songwriters and mesmerizing singers as they share their stories with gazes at once light and weighted, offering listeners comfort in despairing corners.

                                                                              The now Fort Collins, CO-based sisters were raised and homeschooled on nine farmland acres just outside of Norman, OK. Their lives changed abruptly at 13 when their father, who suffered from Parkinson’s disease, took his own life. “Mental health is such an undervalued issue that’s not talked about enough – so we talk about it through our music,” says Sophia. The loss pushed the girls to write. Sourcing inspiration from their shared love of artists like Gillian Welch, Alison Krauss, and Samantha Crain, the duo began to form their own style through a freedom of thought, expression, and directness that can only result from such an intimate, symbiotic bond – even if they had their creative differences at times. “Writing came pretty naturally, but as siblings, there was friction,” Jo says. “Our closeness as twins allows for a sometimes brutal honesty that other collaborators might shy away from.” The tension made the songs even better.

                                                                              On the album, a gradual march toward openness, possibility, and warmth is underway, tracing Sophia and Jo’s real-world path of healing. “It’s been 10 years since our dad died, and it’s taken 10 years for us to get to this point where we feel like trusting,” Sophia says. “We don’t feel drawn toward chaos or constant darkness, whether it was self-manufactured darkness or just bad luck. We both feel better. We’re not unhappy every day anymore. And this album is like that next step toward this new phase of life.” Hope peeks through early songs on Second Day of Spring, like grass growing up through sidewalk cracks, before sprawling out into lush meadows by the album’s end. Produced and recorded in a Colorado barn by a close-knit, all female team, the process of creating Second Day of Spring was as heartfelt as the album itself. Acoustic guitar is a constant companion to the twins’ blood harmonies, joined at turns by standout instrumentation ranging from viola to organelle to trumpet to piano, and even the earthly, tender sounds of the natural beauty that surrounded them.

                                                                              The sisters’ songwriting prowess is evident across Second Day of Spring, as their exquisite lyricism elevates each story of heartache, growth, relationships and new beginnings to deeply moving and achingly relatable heights. Album opener “How Could I Have Known” meditates on the permanence of impermanence: “I was engaged to my now husband when I wrote this song. He was dealing with some concerning medical issues, and I developed an over-awareness of how quickly I could never see him again,” explains Sophia. “Having lost family members without warning in the past, I became anxiously aware that just as soon as he came into my life, he could leave it, too. Though this thought, at its core, is a very scary one, when I looked beyond the fear of losing something I held so dearly, I could see the incredible gift it is to have something to hold dear in the first place.”

                                                                              “Arms Length” looks at the pain of longing to love while still feeling the hurt of broken trust (“Maybe I’m not warmed up yet / I’m wearing armor from a different past / Demanding trust, an impossible thing / Akin to being taught to laugh”). Sophia wrote album standout “If I Were a Ghost,” a spellbinding feat of songwriting, after arguing with her mother and retreating to a small chapel on their family’s property that their father built by hand. “My mom and I were having difficult relationship issues, but I knew she was still in grief,” Sophia says. “This was just five years after her husband’s death. So, I was just trying to really put myself where she was standing, just to understand what she was feeling.” The result is gorgeous commiseration, heartbreaking and soul-affirming in its empathy. “I don’t really cry when I write songs,” Sophia says. “But I was sobbing while writing this one.”

                                                                              “23rd Street,” “Second Day of Spring'' and “Newborn of Springtime” (“You've hurt me so badly / You've healed me so sweet / The trees are rustling / A loving word leaves”) see the band turning a corner. “Some of the songs, like ‘Forfeit,’ ‘If I Were a Ghost,’ and ‘Arms Length,’ feel very much like fall and winter––the winter of my life,” says Sophia. “And then we move into springtime.” Jo adds, “It was very important to me to make sure ‘Second Day of Spring’ sounds like it’s heading towards a new season, and to end the album on a spring note.” Warm relief floods “Waiting for You,” as the record closes with hope that seems to swell like the chorus of instruments supporting Companion’s soaring vocals. “The line’s gettin’ thinner / Between what I want / and what’s in front of me / Like the light that glinted off the river / Like the bloom that lifted the winter / I’ve been waiting for you.”

                                                                              Poetically written and earnestly expressed, Second Day Of Spring represents a new hope for the band, and arrives as a balm to anyone in need of a similar comfort. “I saw an older man the other day, just walking down the street with headphones over his ears, and he was just smiling so big,” says Jo. “That’s the feeling I want Second Day of Spring listeners to have––that feeling of, wow. There’s beauty even in the simplest things.”


                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                              Side A
                                                                              1. How Could I Have Known
                                                                              2. Forfeit
                                                                              3. Arm’s Length
                                                                              4. If I Were A Ghost
                                                                              5. Snowbank
                                                                              Side B
                                                                              6. 23rd Street
                                                                              7. Second Day Of Spring
                                                                              8. Newborn Of Springtime
                                                                              9. Sunday Morning
                                                                              10. Waiting For You

                                                                              Bonus 7”
                                                                              To Be Still


                                                                              Why Bonnie

                                                                              90 In November

                                                                                New-York-by-way-of-Texas transplants Why Bonnie announce their debut album, 90 in November, on their new label Keeled Scales. “90 in November” is a sunny guitar pop song about lead singer and songwriter Blair Howerton’s hometown of Houston, packed full of sparkling snapshots—”a technicolor sun” and “a cardboard cutout cowboy waving me goodbye.” “I wanted to capture the bittersweet feeling of saying goodbye to the landscape that shaped you while still dealing with the anxieties of what lies ahead,” says Howerton. “Nostalgia always hits with a flash of disjointed memories - like speeding down the highway or sweating in the Texas heat.” 

                                                                                Following their 2020 “Voice Box” EP, 90 in November crashes into existence with a squeal of feedback and a burst of distorted guitar. Inspired by fellow Texans Townes Van Zandt, Blaze Foley, alt-rock like the Lemonheads and the Replacements, the eccentric pop of Sparklehorse, and Sheryl Crow, the album is a dynamic introduction to an evolutionized Why Bonnie. 90 in November is a meditation on the pains and pleasures of nostalgia and a lesson in learning how to look back at the people, places, and experiences that have shaped us, with room for both unvarnished honesty and rose-tinted melancholy.

                                                                                The songs for 90 in November were mostly written in Brooklyn, where Howerton moved from Austin in 2019. Already in the midst of a major life change, her feeling of being between worlds was compounded when quarantine hit and she found herself, like so many others, stuck in her apartment—about as far away from the wide-open spaces of Texas as one can possibly get. It was in this environment that she began to write songs parsing out the complicated, mixed emotions associated with building a new home while attempting to make sense of the one she had left behind.

                                                                                There’s a deep sense of place across 90 in November. The band—Howerton, keyboardist Kendall Powell, guitarist Sam Houdek, bassist Chance Williams, and drummer Josh Malett—considered making the record in New York or California, but ultimately decided that it had to be done in Texas. In early 2020, Why Bonnie headed down to the town of Silsbee (population: 6,634) to spend two weeks recording with Tommy Read (Lomelda, alexalone) at Lazybones Audio. Howerton describes it as an idyllic period of time where days were spent walking around with cows and evenings drinking Lone Star beer and looking at the stars.

                                                                                90 in November is a trip through Howerton’s inner world, but it’s also a road trip through Texas. Often it is both at once. The songs are full of poetic, cinematic lyrics that flash like colorful scenes glimpsed from the window of a car as it barrels along an interstate highway cutting through the Lone Star State, each one a road stop revealing a different facet of Howerton’s experience. The album is a dynamic introduction to a more raw-edged indie sound from a band who have matured from bedroom dream pop into a sophisticated rock act, their evolving sound a reflection of the journey undertaken by Howerton on this vividly rendered collection of songs.


                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                1. Sailor Mouth
                                                                                2. Galveston
                                                                                3. Nowhere LA
                                                                                4. Hot Car
                                                                                5. Silsbee
                                                                                6. 90 In November
                                                                                7. Healthy
                                                                                8. Sharp Turn
                                                                                9. Lot’s Wife
                                                                                10. Superhero

                                                                                Szun Waves

                                                                                Earth Patterns

                                                                                  The members of Szun Waves may not have been collectively in the same country, let alone room, for over two years, but that hasn’t prevented them from realising their third album, Earth Patterns.

                                                                                  The trio – comprised of producer Luke Abbott, saxophonist Jack Wyllie (Portico Quartet) and drummer Laurence Pike (Triosk/PVT/Liars) – recorded the album sessions together at the tail end of their 2019 European tour, locking themselves away in the studio for three days of improvisation. They emerged with hours of music, some inspired by their live shows, most born fresh in the studio itself, ready to be moulded into the group’s third album in five years.

                                                                                  However, with Laurence marooned in Australia, and Luke and Jack grounded in different parts of the UK, it meant an unexpected reassessment of the band’s creative remit, and the enforced long gestation period almost inadvertently ended up creating the most fully-formed Szun Waves record to date.

                                                                                  Where second album, New Hymn To Freedom, had its face tilted up to the heavens, Earth Patterns is a more grounded record, and in places, a more claustrophobic one: Wyllie’s saxophone squalls ripple in the background as Pike’s dense drums clatter, both shaped and guided by the atmospherics of Abbott’s synths. Moments of jazz harmony collide with cinematic soundscapes; long searching passages build into kaleidoscopic frenzies.

                                                                                  “I think the record we've ended up with is an emotional outpouring,” Abbott says. “There's a fluidity to it that feels like we tapped into something quite raw. The last record felt like drifting in space but I see this new record as a journey from the outer reaches of the universe down onto the earth, like a macrocosm to microcosm arc,” he explains.


                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                  A1. Exploding Upwards
                                                                                  A2. New Universe
                                                                                  A3. Garden
                                                                                  A4. In The Moon House
                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                  B1. Be A Pattern For The World
                                                                                  B2. Willow Leaf Pear
                                                                                  B3. Atomkerne

                                                                                  Kathryn Williams

                                                                                  Night Drives

                                                                                    Singer, songwriter, novelist, and painter Kathryn Williams is proud to announce her new album ‘Night Drives’. The collection explores a more filmic sound, with a larger ensemble of instrumentation, particular emphasis on the strings and production from Ed Harcourt. It’s out on July 15th via One Little Independent Records.

                                                                                    Journeying from leftfield contemporary pop to soft acoustics, Kathryn Williams uses her latest LP to explore a variety of fresh ideas driven, in part, by a host of collaborators. Kirsty Logan, Oystein Greni, Romeo Stodart, Matt Deighton, Simon Edwards, Yvette Williams, Neill Maccoll, Andy Bruce, Ida Wenoe, Joel Sarakula, Emily Barker and John Alder all have credits on various tracks across ‘Night Drives’. Kathryn explains “I’ve been releasing music for 24 years now. That fact blows me away, and things have changed so much over those years. The biggest change has been my love of co-writing and writing for other artists. This began when I first went on a writing retreat with Chris Difford forming close friendships and working relationships that are represented here”.

                                                                                    Her first official album since ‘Hypoxia’ in 2015, ‘Night Drives’ opens with some of Kathryn’s most immediately electronic tracks to date, the nihilistic ‘Human’, big ballad ‘Answer In The Dark’ with all it’s bold, layered production, and the dynamic, infectious ‘Radioactive’. Elsewhere on the likes of ‘Moon Karaoke’, ‘Magnets’ and ‘The Brightest’, a more cinematic sound is explored; slowly unravelling stories backed by delicate acoustics and elated, emotive string pieces. ‘Put The Needle On The Record’ and joint closers ‘Starry Heavens’ and ‘I Am Rich In All That I’ve Lost’ are relaxed and fall into the more traditional world of folk inspired melancholia. Kathryn’s inimitable charm colours the whole album with emotion and affection – occasionally brooding, always likable.

                                                                                    Discussing some of the themes explored she says “Some of it is questioning who we are, realising that being human is about flaws, humility, and the consequences of how we react to others. It can be about the longevity of a long-term relationship, how to keep the fire burning and to celebrate that. So many love songs are about the first moments, but this is about enduring love. The simple things that fill a day and how our dreams and wants are so separate to the daily grind. The final track is a philosophical musing on loss and gain in life. How by living a long life we will lose so much, but that in itself is riches”.

                                                                                    The classic references that Kathryn draws from, particularly that of fellow Liverpudlians The Beatles, are clear in ‘Night Drives’, which plays like a road-trip through her styles and influences. It recalls visions of a British countryside lightly illuminated by the flicker of passing lampposts and the endless, rolling landscapes beyond them. These are intelligent, self-aware tracks, with Kathryn’s unmistakable writing backed with beautifully arranged, natural compositions.

                                                                                    “I am really proud of this record. Also really scared of putting it out into the world after such a long time” she continues, “I can say that because it’s not just down to me. It’s because of the musical family I have around me that keeps me safe, makes me better, is there for the times when I think I can’t go on. It’s about realising that by sharing things creatively, they can be better and it’s not about showing people how great you are. It’s about making the songs the best they can be and trusting people with that. I’ve been on OLI records since 2010. In that time, they have put out 8 albums as well as the anthology box set. Their belief in me and ongoing support has been nothing short of a miracle. They’ve happily allowed me to do side projects, collaborations, write novels, teach. They’ve encouraged me to make my art and include it on releases. Having the label, Ed Harcourt and the other artists who I work with believe in me has helped me believe in myself and want to be what they think I am.”

                                                                                    Kathryn Williams is often described as “a songwriter’s songwriter”, her timeless and searching work has earned her accolades, critical acclaim, and a loyal fan-base. In this new musical world when we talk about an artist’s body of work, we tend to think of a handful of records stretched out across of a handful of years, if we’re lucky. A changing industry and a focus on immediacy has done little to alter such notions, which makes Kathryn Williams something of an anomaly – releasing 12 full-length albums under her own name since her debut LP, ‘Dog Leap Stairs’, released in 1999.

                                                                                    As impressive a stat as that might be, it does little to capture the true magic of Williams work; the enchanting craft that has grown and expanded as she’s moved from one project to the next, from the breakthrough success of her Mercury Prize nominated ‘Little Black Numbers’ all the way to her Sylvia Plath tribute project 'Hypoxia' and last year’s Christmas album ‘Midnight Chorus’, written with Dame Carol Ann Duffy.

                                                                                    While her best-known work is characterised by rich and honest songwriting inspired by the greats, Williams has continually been able to evolve as an artist because she’s always looked outside of such boundaries. She continues to listen and learn while, at the same time, writing with a fiery spirit and a sense of adventure that has never once wilted. 


                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                    Barry says: Kathryn Williams clearly takes influence from both folk and country, with wistful melodies and swooning progressions at the forefront, but the result is more akin to a grand orchestral wave, both dramatic and grand. It's thoroughly beautiful and very emotive throughout.

                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                    Side A
                                                                                    Human
                                                                                    Answer In The Dark
                                                                                    Chime Like A Bell
                                                                                    Radioactive
                                                                                    The Me For You
                                                                                    Moon Karaoke
                                                                                    Side B
                                                                                    Night Drive To The Lake
                                                                                    Put The Needle On The Record
                                                                                    Magnets
                                                                                    The Brightest
                                                                                    Starry Heavens
                                                                                    I Am Rich In All That I’ve Lost

                                                                                    Hatis Noit

                                                                                    Aura

                                                                                      There isn’t a more unique entry into a musical journey than that of Japanese voice artist Hatis Noit, who today announces her much anticipated debut album Aura will be on Erased Tapes.

                                                                                      Her musical awakening took place at the tender age of sixteen during a trek to Buddha's birthplace in Nepal. One morning when staying at a women’s temple she came across a female monk singing Buddhist chants whose otherworldly sounds moved her so intensely that she was instantly aware of the visceral power of the human voice; a primal and instinctive instrument that connects us to the very essence of humanity, nature and our universe. From that moment she knew singing was her calling.

                                                                                      The album title Aura was inspired by the German philosopher Walter Benjamin who used this term to describe the fundamental essence of art, which he believed is strongest in its original form, only happening once. Hatis agrees with this particular aspect as she realised, “during the pandemic, I really struggled. As a singer, I’m not very good at working on the computer. I much prefer doing live performances in physical spaces. Being with people, sharing the same space with them and feeling the atmosphere and energy of that moment, inspires me every time. To me art is that — that shared moment.” The gravitas of the pandemic caused Noit to look inwards and reflect. This resulted in the album becoming a remedy for what was going on in the world and ultimately to remember the joys and richness of life. Hatis adds to this sentiment, “we cannot live forever, do everything or be everywhere. But that makes our lives unique and invaluable. I wanted to be focused on our limitations and show how precious life is.”

                                                                                      The name Hatis Noit itself is taken from Japanese folklore, meaning the stem of the lotus flower. The lotus represents the living world, while its root represents the spirit world, therefore Hatis Noit is what connects the two. For Hatis, music represents the same netherworld with its ability to move and transport us to the other side; the past, a memory, our subconscious.

                                                                                      Through the opening piece ‘Aura’, which shares its title with the album, she evokes a haunting memory of getting lost in a forest in her birthplace Shiretoko, Hokkaido. “I felt as if I was close to my death, I could feel myself dissolving into and becoming a part of nature rather than just being an individual. This sense of awe and peace found there is always the place where I start making music from,” she remembers.

                                                                                      Years of perfecting her craft via live performances led her to the creation of this debut album which follows on from the introductory 2018 EP, Illogical Dance. An autodidact with an impressive range, Noit is inspired by Gagaku — Japanese classical music — folk music, operatic styles, Bulgarian and Gregorian chanting, as well as avant-garde and pop vocalists to create her inimitable style. Hatis creates wordless music, unique song worlds with transcendent vocal interpretations of epic proportions — most evident on ‘Jomon’ where she channels the fierce, dynamic energy and power of prehistoric culture during Japan’s Jomon period.

                                                                                      Astonishingly all songs on this record were created using her voice only. The single exception being ‘Inori’ for which she took a field recording of the ocean only one kilometre away from the nuclear power plant in Fukushima. Hatis Noit had been invited there for a memorial ceremony which marked the re-opening of the area for local people to return to their homes. The emotive and compassionate song is dedicated to the lives lost due to 2011’s tsunami, but equally to the many beautiful memories people have of their hometown.

                                                                                      The album was recorded in Berlin where Noit laid down her vocals in just eight hours, before the pandemic forced her and producer Robert Raths to stay local and mix it in East London, which led to working with a new collaborator: engineer Marta Salogni. Between lockdowns it was decided to take the recordings and reamplify them in a local church to bring them closer to that moment of live performance. “It was almost like a miracle when Robert came up with the idea. That was the moment that changed everything for the album as the physical space with its organic ambience brought everything to life,” Hatis Noit recalls. 


                                                                                      STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                      Barry says: Hatis Noit's sound may at first seem quite minimalistic, being that it's crafted for voice alone, but it's the incredible range of sounds that she manages to coax out, rich with syncopation and melody, that really make the album such a gorgeous, unexpected treat. More genius from Hatis Noit and the always excellent Erased Tapes.

                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                      1. Aura
                                                                                      2. Thor
                                                                                      3. Himbrimi
                                                                                      4. A Caso
                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                      5. Jomon
                                                                                      6. Angelus Novus
                                                                                      7. Inori
                                                                                      8. Sir Etok

                                                                                      Momma

                                                                                      Household Name

                                                                                        Momma, the band led by singers/guitarists Allegra Weingarten and Etta Friedman, release their new album, 'Household Name'.

                                                                                        Fresh off a series of dates with Wet Leg, the band’s new full-length 'Household Name' reveals an exciting new chapter marked by both personal and artistic growth. Now based in Brooklyn, New York, after relocating from hometown Los Angeles, the duo upgraded from GarageBand and took their time writing and recording in a proper studio alongside multi-instrumentalist/producer Aron Kobayashi Ritch. The resulting album, mastered by Grammy-winning engineer Emily Lazar, is a tightly stitched collection that is magnetic and dynamic, and also marks their debut for Lucky Number, who signed Momma in the midst of the pandemic before the band members had even finished college. In chasing their idols and embracing personal storytelling, the band has skill-fully carved out their own path. 'Household Name' showcases an unfettered vulnerability elevated by serious alt-rock bombast and is an album that tells the world: This is Momma.

                                                                                        Across the album’s 12 songs, Weingarten and Friedman, who met and formed Momma in high school, cull lyrical inspiration from their own lives for the first time - a contrast with the conceptual fiction of Two of Me. Bygone heroes also helped inspire a lyrical theme throughout 'Household Name': the rise and fall of the rock star, and the tropes and tribulations that come with that arc. The theme allowed the group to celebrate (and, in some cases, directly reference) icons like Nirvana, Pavement, Smashing Pumpkins, Veruca Salt, and the Breeders’ Kim Deal, while weaving in their own perspective and experiences.

                                                                                        'Household Name' perfects a balance of heavy riffs, deep emotions, inviting sonic production, and a light-hearted, wry sense of humour, creating a singular lane for Momma in today's world of alt rock.


                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                        1. Rip Off
                                                                                        2. Speeding 72
                                                                                        3. Medicine
                                                                                        4. Rockstar
                                                                                        5. Motorbike
                                                                                        6. Tall Home
                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                        7. Lucky
                                                                                        8. Brave
                                                                                        9. Callin’ Me
                                                                                        10. Spider
                                                                                        11. No Stage
                                                                                        12. No Bite

                                                                                        TRAAMS

                                                                                        Personal Best

                                                                                          ‘Personal Best’, the third album from Chichester’s TRAAMS and their first in seven years, represents a band rebuilt from the ground up. After half a decade apart, all it took was a global pandemic to reaffirm their intense urge to create music together, and the limitations the situation brought with it ended up revolutionising their sound.

                                                                                          Though the band never officially broke up after the release of nine-minute behemoth ‘A House On Fire’ and the subsequent tour at the end of 2017, a break made sense to all three members. “I couldn’t really write, and I didn’t have the motivation to do anything musical. I’m pretty sure I didn’t pick up a guitar for 2 years,” vocalist and guitarist Stuart Hopkins reflects. “I was waiting for that feeling to come back.” In the intervening years, the band went their separate ways. Padley making a record with his new project Social Haul, and Adam learning new instruments and buying up synthesisers. Eventually in 2019, Stu began tinkering away on two leftover TRAAMS songs, the ten-minute krautrock epic ‘The Greyhound’ and the fidgety ‘Intercontinental Radio Waves’, which were then released in 2020. “They had been left as instrumental demos with no vocal takes, and to be honest they were beginning to drive me a little mad,” Stu recalls. “I needed them finished and out of my head.”

                                                                                          At the tail end of 2019 the urge to reconnect struck the band, and they headed to Brighton for some initial sessions in a similar way to previous records – guitar, bass, drums, vocals. This continued until the first lockdown happened. After having this initial momentum scuppered, work on ‘personal best’ began again in earnest in summer of 2020, when lockdown restrictions eased. The trio were allowed to meet up in a studio and rehearsal space cobbled together in Stu’s workplace in Chichester. Due to flats in close proximity and only being able to play and record at night, the band were forced to write music at a hushed volume. “We had to re-learn how to play together,” the frontman says. “It was really quiet and considered, whereas before it’s always been obnoxiously loud. All the things we’d usually relied upon – bass and drums locking in, guitar feedback, shouted words – were no longer applicable in this new way of writing. After our initial reservations, it was incredibly inspiring and freeing.”

                                                                                          As a result, ‘Dry’ and ‘Comedown’ – the two songs that bookend the new album, written in those early Brighton sessions – are the only two to feature live drums, a previous staple of TRAAMS’ sound. “There was an element of me not wanting to play drums as much anyway, but lockdown made it happen as we just couldn’t get to a drum kit,” Adam Stock remembers. For a while, the idea was to write within the restraints they were set initially, before imagining full band sessions to flesh out the sound in a more traditional way later down the line.

                                                                                          In the end, this new way of working proved revolutionary for the band. With Adam on guitar and drum machines, and Stu experimenting with softer vocal tones, a new sound emerged for the trio, one that defines their third album. “I like the fact that it touches on old ideas and new ideas, created in this weird middle period of our lives when we were locked down and didn’t know when we’d get on stage again,” bassist Leigh Padley says. “We focused more on the writing than we had done before.” Stu adds: “Lockdown heightened how much we realised we needed to do this, after so many years inactive. We realised that TRAAMS was something we all really needed.”

                                                                                          By stepping away from their usual instruments and working in an untraditional way, TRAAMS have made their most interconnected album yet. Opener ‘Sirens’, a gorgeous and glacial electronic intro, serves as the first pointer of their transformation, while ‘Breathe’ has the scale and scope of some of their biggest songs but in a more controlled manner, building steadily across its nine minutes. ‘Hallie’ and ‘Dry’ provide the most familiar sounds to the TRAAMS of the past, but the idea of progression and forward motion is everywhere on the album. In delegating some of his lyric writing duties to Padley, Stu also reconnected with a previously waning enthusiasm for storytelling. “He gave me loads of stuff and all this inspiration just ran from it,” he says. “I knew what the songs were about but I didn’t have the correct words for them. I don’t know if I was just reading into what Padley was writing and taking what I wanted to get from it, like reading your horoscope, but they all made sense with what I had in my mind.”

                                                                                          Another defining feature for the album is its musical guests. Liza Violet of Menace Beach appears on ‘Breathe’, her vocals intertwining with Stu’s, and surging closer ‘Comedown’, while lead single ‘Sleeper’ – a gorgeously restrained, catchy track which swaps brute for beauty – features a verse from Soffie Viemose of Danish band Lowly, former tourmates of TRAAMS.

                                                                                          Joe Casey, the idiosyncratic frontman of past and future TRAAMS tourmates Protomartyr also makes an appearance on the album’s blistering centerpiece, ‘The Light At Night’. “I had this part where I was trying to sound like a preacher, or someone with unequivocal authority, delivering this ranting speech,” Stu says of his idea for the song, “and as much as I tried to get a good version of me doing it, it just wasn’t working. It just sounded like I was trying to be Joe.” What better conclusion, then, than to get the man himself involved? A speculative Instagram message followed, ending up in Casey writing a brilliantly vivid, chaotic verse to send the track towards oblivion. “Kill the body then the head dies,” he spits over and over at the end of the song in a crazed manner only Casey is capable of, adding some blood and guts to the album’s poise and guile.

                                                                                          The title of ‘personal best’ also serves as emblematic of the overarching development of TRAAMS through the creation of their third album. “A lot of this album is about recognising yourself,” Stu says. “This record is about the little changes we make, and the milestones we achieve in that process,” he adds, reflecting on a seven year period where his band drifted apart before reconnecting and finding an entirely new way of working, a change that has resulted in their most beautiful and fully-formed album yet. “It’s not about big declarations of love or huge outpourings of grief,” he says. “It’s about the little personal realisations and victories that people have throughout their lives. Some of them are massive, some of them can be hard, and some are small and beautiful, but they all matter.”


                                                                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                          Barry says: This shows an entirely different side to TRAAMS, pulling out their first full length since 2015's 'Modern Dancing' and swims in the sort of meditative, thoughtful progressions and lysergic airy bliss we wouldn't necessarily associate with this Chichester trio. It's airy and thoughtful, and beautifully paced throughout.

                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                          Side A
                                                                                          1.Sirens
                                                                                          2.Dry
                                                                                          3.Breathe Feat Softlizard
                                                                                          4.Light At Night Feat Joe Casey
                                                                                          Side B
                                                                                          1.Sleeper Feat Soffie Viemose
                                                                                          2.Shields
                                                                                          3.Hallie
                                                                                          4.Comedown Feat Softlizard

                                                                                          Gemma Cullingford

                                                                                          Tongue Tied

                                                                                            ‘Tongue Tied’ is the sophomore album from Gemma Cullingford (Sink Ya Teeth). Written and produced from Gemma's humble home studio in Norfolk, ‘Tongue Tied’ blends many styles of electronica from 70's experimental and new wave, early 80's electro, acid house and techno to noughties electro clash, topped with her own vocal style to produce a unique and fresh sound. It explores relationships and the different emotions they can bring, from paranoia, yearning and helplessness to lust, shyness and just downright wanting to dance.

                                                                                            ‘Tongue Tied’ is a progressive follow up to her debut ‘Let Me Speak’ which garnered support from the likes of Steve Lamacq, Amy Lame, Nemone, Chris Hawkins, Jamz Supernova, John Kennedy and James Endeacott, plus glowing reviews in Mojo, Uncut and Electronic Sound.

                                                                                            For the cover artwork on ‘Tongue Tied’, Gemma has collaborated with visual artist Kelda Storm who shares Gemma's love for bright, contrasting neon colours and minimal bold designs. She uses the iconography of feminine lips across her work as a symbol of speech and voice.

                                                                                            RIYL: Sink Ya Teeth, Lonelady, A Certain Ratio.

                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                            1. Accessory
                                                                                            2. Tongue Tied
                                                                                            3. Bass Face
                                                                                            4. Holding Dreams
                                                                                            5. Mechanical
                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                            6. New Day
                                                                                            7. No Fail
                                                                                            8. Chronicle Of Sound
                                                                                            9. Red Room
                                                                                            10. Daisy

                                                                                            Portron Portron Lopez

                                                                                            Ice Cream Soufi

                                                                                              Coming on like a mutation of all the wild and tempered instrumentation of the Dirty Three in full flow, the ambling and meandering yet intense desert rock of Scenic via a long and delightful trawl around the mountain tops of the Mediterranean coastline… evocative and exhilarating music that pulls you along for the ride!! although an instrumental record, this album is as joyous as some of the most rambunctious and rowdy pop albums you’re ever likely to hear.

                                                                                              For fans of Mdou Moctar, Dirty Three, Scenic, Captain Beefheart, Music Ehtiopiques etc// good times!

                                                                                              “One of us once came in with a guitar riff he’d made alone at home and asked the band to play it the way he composed it. The result was a disaster!”

                                                                                              Portron Portron Lopez don’t do concepts. There are no great discussions about where they should pull their influences from, or pre-planning about how to structure studio work. The Parisian-formed trio exist in spontaneity, a creative co-habitancy that relies on feel and groove – as evidenced on their three studio albums to-date. Exploratory odysseys that bely the potential pitfalls an improvisational-minded group might fall into during the recording process, they’ve moved between shades of psychedelia and Middle Eastern-inflected drones as well as more electronic and club-based touchstones, doing so in a way that feels effortlessly free. That sense of adventure is furthered still on forthcoming album Ice Cream Soufi.

                                                                                              “We need exploding ideas that allow us to build tracks that we can emotionally convey onstage” they say. “It's not about being a concept band, but about striking ideas that make sense. It’s not ‘our music’ we’re making - it’s transposing who we are into music.”

                                                                                              Portron Portron Lopez were formed in 2011 in Paris by guitarists and brothers Marceau and Valentin Portron. High school friend and drummer Lucas Lopez joined after a two-day long improvisation session in a Parisian wine bar. He left after two records – 2012’s beguilingly Beefheart-meets-Afrobeat set of tracks on Uh!, and 2015’s similarly acid-fried Moi Aussi J'ai Des Amis Qui Font Du Bruit – but his position was taken by Olivier Kelchtermans. The Belgian artist had contributed to PPL’s previous studio recordings as a saxophonist but switched to behind the kit in time for the 2016 tour dates and then the 2018 release De Colère et d'Envie’s mix of lo-fi hypnagogia and proto-punk recalling mayhem.

                                                                                              Ice Cream Soufi certainly doesn’t eschew all the chaos of that record, but the seven tracks that make up the group’s fourth LP lean further into their penchant for cross-pollination across globally inspired styles. Opener Comment Vas-Tu Rossignol’s roots are in western Iran and a recording Valentin made there of local musicians playing in the ethnographic museum of Sanadaj. The material served as inspiration for the resulting track, which leans on Kurdish folk style and structure while the trio whip themselves into a sense of frenzy around it.

                                                                                              Elsewhere, third track A Stranger I May Be came out of several improvisations based around the group’s goal of “getting to a country-techno song” – an on-paper incongruous mix that makes a hell of a lot of sense when listened to. It’s unwavering kick drum drives through the group’s duelling guitars and unburdened vocal shrieks, supplemented by musician and comedian Charly Fournier who adds a touch of knowing absurdity to proceedings.

                                                                                              Those two tracks bookend Pensée Sans Tête, which was improvised and demoed in April 2019 during a rehearsal, before being taken to an old barn in Normandie the following year to flesh out. The track’s repeato-riffs gradually spin quicker and quicker as the group underpin it vocally and with rolling percussion.

                                                                                              Arguably the centre piece of the record, though, is Aubes – an 11-minute-long opus of cacophonic drones that gather and bustle for space amidst each other, a line of tension pulled tight through them. It’s a stirring midpoint that encourages the listener’s mind to pick its own sonic adventure within the different shades of sound.

                                                                                              “At first, the original concept of the album was to put three straight rock songs in and a 23-minute drone” the band comment. “But the result was not satisfying”.

                                                                                              Instead, they cut half the drone and added a few overdubs. Valentin added some recordings he’d made during a trip to Iranian Kurdistan where he’d seen Farzad Memar - the uncle of ambient composer Porya Hatami - playing duduk. He also mixed in some Târ playing by his beloved Persian friend Mostafa Heydarian.

                                                                                              “The initial idea of three songs and one drone was boring because it was a rational concept” they say. “All of a sudden, a new album started to take shape in front of us, as a rosebud growing under our very touched eyes. It was a beautiful surprise.”
                                                                                              Aubes’ peak allows the two following tracks to giddily scramble down the other side of the record, with Fin De Partie perhaps the most garage rock-inspired track on the album, its rawness the result of a direct lift from the outro of a live set that took place in a small basement in Bordeaux. Tayau rounds things out, a short two-minute finale recorded at home on Marceau’s phone in his bedroom.

                                                                                              Recorded across six different locations over a period of 20 months, sessions saw the trio set up everywhere, from various rehearsal studios to band members respective homes, a large church in Sète and an old barn in Normandie. The three group members are now spread out across Paris, Corrèze in the central west of France and Sète on its south coast. All that meant, though, was that the sessions for the album took on even more of an improvisatory vibe as they sought to make the most of their increasingly limited time together.

                                                                                              “One of the greatest achievements of these sessions was being able to put up an album that is like a house with lots of different rooms” they say. “You never want to stick in the main hall when you're visiting someone, and that's the feeling you may have when listening to a record fully recorded and mixed in the same place and time. For us, the live nature of the tracks and the different moods they take on make it feel more like a journey through us.”
                                                                                              And beyond the feeling of it, nothing else matters.


                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                              Side A
                                                                                              01 Comment Vas-Tu Rossignol
                                                                                              02 Pensées Sans Tête
                                                                                              03 A Stranger I May Be
                                                                                              04 Trois-Cent-Dix-Huit Poussettes
                                                                                              Side B
                                                                                              01 Aubes
                                                                                              02 Fin De Partie
                                                                                              03 Tayau

                                                                                              Dinked Edition Bonus 7”
                                                                                              A: Train Bluc
                                                                                              B: Kula

                                                                                              Dinked Edition 
                                                                                              13 TRACK BONUS CD IN SLEEVE

                                                                                              A Bakers Dozen: PPL Primer.
                                                                                              1: BICHETTE
                                                                                              2: SOL MAMMOUTH
                                                                                              3: JEROME
                                                                                              4: VELVET TARGUI
                                                                                              5: UNE BARQUE SUR L'OCEAN
                                                                                              6: LEELOO
                                                                                              7: ADIOS JUAN NAVIDAD
                                                                                              8: BICHETTE II
                                                                                              9: EVERYBODY'S GOT A NUMBER IN THE NECK (LIVE)
                                                                                              10 LA CHAUVE SOURIS (LIVE)
                                                                                              11 CIRCUS
                                                                                              12 TRAIN BLUC
                                                                                              13 KULA

                                                                                              Kelley Stoltz

                                                                                              The Stylist

                                                                                                "The Stylist", Kelley Stoltz's 17th album finds him following up the Third Man Records reissue of his 2001 "Antique Glow", with a collection of 10 new songs. The album was recorded early in 2021, and has been languishing in the vinyl pressing log jam ever since - but luckily Stoltz writes timeless songs, the kind that might've appeared on the fringes of the late 60's or mid 80's. Acoustic guitars, synthesizers, drum machines and strong melodies abound. As with his other classic records "Below the Branches", "Double Exposure" and "Ah! (etc)" Stoltz plays most of the instruments himself and records in his home studio in San Francisco. Kelley says, "I chose the title 'the Stylist' because musically I guess that's what I am... because of the way I write, at my leisure over a period of months at home, I kinda flit around between styles. It's all in the pop-rock vein, but there's usually a wide range of sounds and inspiration from song to song. It sort of fits together in a mix tape kind of way, rather than an exploration of one particular mood. That's always been the case with my albums."

                                                                                                The chorus-y guitar jangle of "Your Name Escapes Me" somehow name checks the New Bomb Turks, while reflecting on familiar if forgotten faces from Stoltz's past. On "My Island" insistent piano and saxophone solos take the listener on a tropical trip to the soft rock radio dial. Stoltz played rhythm guitar in Echo & the Bunnymen for a few years, and "We Grew So Far Apart" clangs like a lost Liverpool 80's classic. Stoltz says, "There's a touch more piano on this record... going back to my Sub Pop days, when I was writing more Beatle-y bits... Harry Nilsson... that kind of thing." Indeed, the piano led "It's a Cold World" plays like a holy union of Todd Rundgren and the Zombies where Stoltz declares, "it's a cold world at times, but I'm not ready to give up the fight."

                                                                                                Thankfully, after 23 years the beat goes on... and no matter what style Stoltz chooses, "The Stylist" is another platter of tuneful delight in the impressive catalog of one of the great songwriters of our time.


                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                Side A
                                                                                                Change
                                                                                                We Grew So Far Apart
                                                                                                You Had To Be There
                                                                                                My Wildest Dream
                                                                                                Its A Cold World
                                                                                                Side B
                                                                                                Is There Anything That's Better Than This , Babe?
                                                                                                Your Name Escapes Me
                                                                                                In The Night
                                                                                                Wrong Number
                                                                                                My Island

                                                                                                Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

                                                                                                When The Lights Go

                                                                                                  Recorded predominantly in Orlando’s studio in Los Angeles, ‘When the Lights Go’ is his first album since 2012’s critically acclaimed ‘Trouble’. The new album marks a departure in sound, defined, of course, by the events of the last few years. Encompassing songwriting, ballads and a pop-centered aesthetic, it’s full of depth, feeling, storytelling and woe - presented in a compelling manner, as only he can.

                                                                                                  ‘When the Lights Go’ is a substantial body of work, containing 17 tracks, representative of the duration between albums, “I feel grateful to know that there are people who are interested in more music from me. So I want to give them something significant in length”, he says. When the Lights Go also marks a shift into the pop domain, Orlando’s vocals take centre stage with arrangements that complement the sadness in the songwriting.


                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                  1. Crosswalk
                                                                                                  2. Persuasion (interlude)
                                                                                                  3. Blood In The Snow
                                                                                                  4. Never Seen You Dance
                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                  1. Forever
                                                                                                  2. The Sleeper
                                                                                                  3. Story
                                                                                                  4. Sound & Rhythm
                                                                                                  Side C
                                                                                                  1. When The Lights Go
                                                                                                  2. Basement
                                                                                                  3. Friend
                                                                                                  4. Be With You
                                                                                                  Side D
                                                                                                  13. Treason
                                                                                                  14. Through The Floor
                                                                                                  15. Silence
                                                                                                  16. Blue Is The Color
                                                                                                  17. Thugs

                                                                                                  Akusmi

                                                                                                  Fleeting Future

                                                                                                    Akusmi is the new project moniker of French-born, London based composer, multi-instrumentalist and producer Pascal Bideau, who signs to the new Tonal Union imprint for the release of his album ‘Fleeting Future.’ With its hallucinatory, genre-defying blend of minimalism, cosmic jazz and Fourth World influences, and in its quest for optimism in the face of unknown and limitless possibility. ‘Fleeting Future’ stands apart as an inventive and inspirational debut.

                                                                                                    The creation of the album’s richly colourful and multi-layered sound world was originally inspired by Bideau’s journey to Indonesia, where he immersed himself in traditional Gamelan and gong music. Many of the themes, motifs and melodies on ‘Fleeting Future’ seed from the ‘Slendro’ scale, one of the essential tuning systems used in Gamelan. However it is not musical scales, but scales as in the size or extent of things that most fascinates Bideau, specifically he explains; “the compelling way things dramatically change when you shift from any given scale to another.”

                                                                                                    The album connects directly to nature and the wider world in its evocation of perceptive shifts and transitions from microscopic to macro scale, as evidenced by the opening title track ‘Fleeting Future’, on which a simple dotted saxophone line morphs and billows into synths, brass and strings, indicating the musical voyage that lies ahead. Like the start of a journey or adventure it is full of anticipation, its arborescent growth conveying the optimism of the unknown and of limitless possibility. The album centrepiece ‘Neo Tokyo’ is a vibrating, ebullient mass of colliding elements which feels like zooming in to the electron level, as it teeters on the edge of chaos. The title is a reference to Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira, a dizzying work of art set in a sprawling futuristic metropolis.

                                                                                                    ‘Yurikamome’, meanwhile, is an imaginary soundtrack inspired by Bideau’s yearning to visit Japan which he fuels by watching Youtube videos of drives and rides through Japanese landscapes and cities. “It’s amazing” he adds, “that we have the ability to access almost anywhere in the world and see what it’s like, that people document it and upload it. It’s never going to be any replacement for the real thing, but with places that really touch you, it works.” The track is named after a Japanese monorail train line which rides from Shinbashi to Toyosu, a last journey that feels like a new beginning.

                                                                                                    ‘Fleeting Future’ was composed and recorded by Bideau between 2017 and 2019 in his North London studio and features additional contributions recorded in Berlin by Florian Juncker (trombone), Ruth Velten (saxophone) and regular collaborator Daniel Brandt of Brandt Brauer Frick (drums / electronic percussion). Having been living through uncertain times, one thing that keeps spiralling into the unknown is the future, about which Bideau leaves us with a final thought:
                                                                                                    “The future is fascinating: It is constantly readjusting to new events. I feel we left a linear approach to the future to enter an arborescent one where all the data and information we have about what could happen is exponentially ever-growing. Following a branch might allow you to glimpse into what it may become, but the evolution of the whole picture might very well render the prediction totally obsolete, and even meaningless. In that sense, there is not one future but innumerable ones all cancelling each other. That’s what makes it fleeting.”

                                                                                                    ‘Fleeting Future’ will be the first release on the new London/Berlin based Tonal Union Imprint, founded by Art director and curator Adam Heron. Adam was instrumental in the rise of the Erased Tapes label and is now the acting label manager of Gondwana Records. He has designed the album’s overall packaging which also features the artwork of Dutch visual artist Sigrid Calon.


                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                    Side A
                                                                                                    A1. Fleeting Future
                                                                                                    A2. Sarinbuana
                                                                                                    A3. Divine Moments Of Truth
                                                                                                    A4. Neo Tokyo
                                                                                                    Side B
                                                                                                    B1. Longing For Tomorrow
                                                                                                    B2. Cogito
                                                                                                    B3. Concrescence
                                                                                                    B4. Yurikamome

                                                                                                    Sam Slater

                                                                                                    I Do Not Wish To Be Known As A Vandal

                                                                                                      I kept on visualizing a body, suspended just at the point where gravity took over, and the figure was falling from their feet to the floor. Frozen at this midpoint, there wasn’t much to say which way they were going - suspended between collapse and recovery, they could almost be getting back to their feet. Perhaps I was punch drunk from 2019, however I noticed very soon the zero-gravity feeling of being suspended between these two points was all around me; the impression of a caring democracy hamstrung by 2D visions of old empires; the climate in it’s seemingly terminal demise and the ever emboldened ideas for a functioning future looming from the smog; the suspension between the immortality of my 20s and the strange feeling when everyone starts to get sick more; the feeling that everything is suspended between collapse and recovery, and I am unsure which way it’s heading.

                                                                                                      The record was made just before the pandemic started, working closely with the distinct feed-backing Dorophone sounds of Hildur Guðnadóttir, Yair Glotman’s thunderous double-bass, James Ginzburg’s devotion to precise form and muting my reverb stems, the microtonal brass and woodwinds of Hilary Jeffrey and Sam Dunscombe and the infinite intimacy of Icelandic singer-songwriter JFDR. From Berlin, I would flag sounds I loved; some twitching strings, the stolen alto voice from an abandoned English chorale, some words from a climate scientist fleshed into a poem. These email attachments struck up a sort of sonic pen-pal program, with each person sending a sound, some words, some creative parameters and responding in turn. It became an exercise in receptivity, in which openness itself became a creative voice, hushing my tendency to micromanage every detail. These interactions were pulled together in late 2019 into a single piece written for two sides of a single 12” vinyl; one side describing collapse (Darn!) and the other, recovery (Kintsugi). Influenced by the 70s concept prog records of my childhood, the album loops without ending, so you were never really allowed to rest in safety, or wallow in the mess for too long.

                                                                                                      Although my 20-year-old self would loathe it, I find myself tired of people believing their own creative voices are the most interesting or that creativity needs another self-aggrandizing voice. I thought of this as a project about restoring balance, the immense power to be found in collaboration, receptivity and the belief that if I am going to contribute to the world in 2022, it should be from a position of openness. It should be kind rather than vulgar. It should be constructive, not destructive. I do not wish to be known as a Vandal.

                                                                                                      Working with visual artist Theresa Baumgartner and Dancer / Choreographer Lukas Malkowski the simple visual imagery of a body resisting gravity was realized as an Audio-Visual installation, which will be premiered in May 2022. “I do not wish to be known as a Vandal” uses high speed cameras which compensate for gravity’s pull at 3000 frames per second, suspending an unclothed body in space as it moves from feet to floor and back again. The result is a simple, framed figure of a body moving through space, duelling with inevitably and the cycle of collapse and recovery, set to generative interpretation of the record.


                                                                                                      Deep Tan

                                                                                                      Diamond Horsetail / Creeping Speedwells

                                                                                                        London based, subversive post-punk trio deep tan are back with their new single, ‘rudy ya ya ya’ and news of their sophomore EP, ‘diamond horsetail’.

                                                                                                        Alongside this, the band are also releasing a Dinked Edition which features ‘diamond horsetail’ and previous EP ‘creeping speedwells’ exclusively pressed together on ‘piss kink yellow’ vinyl, limited to 400 copies.

                                                                                                        ‘rudy ya ya ya’ is pure deep tan: spiky guitars above a driving rhythm section and a sharp, detached vocal. The band explain: “Caught with your pants down, brown ooze slides down a furrowed brow as sacha interrupts — ! (aka the rudy giuliani diss track you never asked for)”

                                                                                                        Since they released their debut EP ‘creeping speedwells’ last year to widespread critical acclaim, deep tan have been winning over legions of fans with their unique brand of post-punk; never afraid of challenging the establishment, their songs are politically astute and socially conscious but never preachy. It’s a potent blend that has seen the band thrust to the forefront of the chasing pack with a string of fine releases and a subversive punk spirit. The band then went on to release a Dan Carey produced single with legendary label Speedy Wunderground, ‘tamu’s yiffing refuge’, a stripped down, driving track that once again proves less is more.

                                                                                                        deep tan make music that emerges from the fatalistic side of life with a flash of cynicism and a rumble of venomous intent. Their stripped-back, minimal sound is a vehicle for songs that engage with contemporary themes, from deepfake revenge pornography to surreal meme pages and stories of furry hedonism.

                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                        Dinked Edition:
                                                                                                        Side A - Diamond Horsetail
                                                                                                        1. Beginners’ Krav Maga
                                                                                                        2. Device Devotion
                                                                                                        3. Gender Expansion Pack
                                                                                                        4. Rudy Ya Ya Ya
                                                                                                        5. Diamond Horsetail
                                                                                                        Side B - Creeping Speedwells
                                                                                                        1. Do You Ever Ascend?
                                                                                                        2. Hollow Scene
                                                                                                        3. Camelot
                                                                                                        4. Deepfake

                                                                                                        Vintage Crop

                                                                                                        Kibitzer

                                                                                                          Geelong’s favourite sons Vintage Crop return with their much-anticipated fourth album, ‘Kibitzer’. Running with the ball that 2020’s “Serve To Serve Again” punted forward, this album marks another energetic break towards the goal for Vintage Crop. ‘Kibitzer’ sees the band define their field of play, more melodic at times, still bruising, forever droll. These ten tracks of ‘snappy as elastic’ Australian punk are packed with tensile riffage, hefty beats and witty refrains of everyman curiosity.

                                                                                                          ‘Kibitzer’ was written in quick response to their critically lauded ‘Serve To Serve Again’ album. Harsh guitars, a brutish rhythm section and a knack for always having the right words at hand are still abundant, but this time Vintage Crop’s songs expand upon their forceful nature with greater harmonic arrangement. It was recorded by Jasper Jolley in one single session on a former apple orchard in Geelong, a backdrop that mirrors the band’s own organic growth whilst highlighting their willingness to approach capturing their own sound their own way. The album was then mixed and mastered by Mikey Young.

                                                                                                          ‘Kibitzer’ delves into themes of identity, resilience and acceptance; some of the more upbeat notions that the band have dealt with to date. ‘Casting Calls’ opens the record, slamming through the speakers with gusto and setting the tone for the following 30 minutes. “It’s rolling, we’re rolling, we’re winding back the tape, we’re getting better with each take” sings lead songwriter Jack Cherry. Accepting your limitations and taking pride in your work are key themes on ‘Kibitzer’. In fact ideas around learning, growing and being able to take things in your stride are strongly felt through their entire body of work. These themes hit home with the album’s title too, with Cherry feeling that ‘Kibitzer’ is an apt way to describe a lot of the band’s focus. “I feel like a lot of our lyrics over the years have been our unsolicited opinions on other people’s situations, the very definition of the word Kibitzer. So for this record we wanted to lean into that tendency by acknowledging it and even go as far as stamping it on the album cover.”

                                                                                                          Musically the band have expanded their palette on this album; exploring a world of rhythmic harmony and a newfound vocal melodicism. There’s also greater lyrical elaboration and considered song structures at play. ‘The Duke’ is a mob of rollicking chants and heavy hitting, catchy to the core. ‘The Bloody War’ is a more sanguine reflection of tumbling drums, struck chords and shrill keyboard warble. “He’s got the keys to the universe and they’re hanging from his belt loop, his wit is as quick as lightning, his disapproving gaze is the thunder that follows” pipes Cherry on ‘Double Slants’, guitars chiming through the hubbub. ‘Hold The Line’ turns the wry amusement of dealing with cold callers into a fidgety anthem of knowing frustration. Whilst ‘Switched Off’ even welcomes the introduction of horns (courtesy of Heidi Peel) to the group’s repertoire, ushering in an unexpected serenity into their tough sound. 


                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                          Side A
                                                                                                          01. Casting Calls
                                                                                                          02. The Duke
                                                                                                          03. Double Slants
                                                                                                          04. Hold The Line
                                                                                                          05. Impact Of Wisdom
                                                                                                          Side B
                                                                                                          06. Drafted
                                                                                                          07. The Bloody War
                                                                                                          08. 2K Hip Pocket
                                                                                                          09. Under Offer
                                                                                                          10. Switched Off

                                                                                                          Mush

                                                                                                          Down Tools

                                                                                                            Leeds art-rock group Mush (Dan Hyndman - vocals / guitar, Phil Porter - drums, Nick Grant - bass, Myles Kirk– guitar) return with album ‘Down Tools’ via Memphis Industries. The new record marks the prolific band’s third album in as many years, following hypebuilding early singles ‘Alternative Facts’ and ‘Gig Economy’, 2020’s debut LP ‘3D Routine’ and 2021's acclaimed ‘Lines Redacted’, which pushed their sound further and, as Uncut wrote, saw them become “kindred spirits to Wand and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, two other bands prolifically honing their sound and approach, steadily developing their voice.”

                                                                                                            On ‘Down Tools’, this voice grows again into a more brilliantly singular sound. It sees Mush getting loose, moving away from the defined moods and textures of ‘Lines Redacted’ with a musical openness, straddling genres while avoiding pastiche. Hyndman says of the lyrics on ‘Down Tools’ that “there was a conscious decision to retreat further from an observational approach” with vocals being ad-libbed lending the record a more abstract feel. Hyndman continues: “this album is less dark than the previous one. The Armageddon obsession has eased, or at least the symptoms have become milder due to saturation. Musically there’s a lot more chill on the record – there’s a few more mellow tracks out there and the most astute listener may even be able to decipher some of the words, fingers crossed.”

                                                                                                            While grief and work balance form themes on the record, Hyndman’s approach is largely made up of abstract, disconnected streams of consciousness and lines liberally taken from books, paintings, films and beyond. On ‘Human Resources’, Hyndman dramatically retells a battle he had with an HR department at a job in a David and Goliath style. The song ‘Group Of Death’, a phrase chillingly familiar to any football fan, is emblematic of the turn towards softer, more considered sounds. Hyndman says: “In my warped imagination it just sounds like a Paul McCartney song, but it won’t to others. I initially had the idea of doing a World Cup song called ‘Group of Death’, but by the time it was written nothing beyond the title had any relevance to football. Anyway, the next World Cup is in Qatar so fuck that shit.” Northern Safari meanwhile is a song about the way the North of England has been portrayed in the media and used as a mirror to reflect some of the nastier elements of what’s going on in society, in particular vox pops around Doncaster, portraying a particular narrative of the collapse of the red wall and the disgruntled ex-miners.

                                                                                                            ‘Down Tools’ then sees Mush idiosyncratically ping-pong from finger picked looseners to noise-rock bangers to brilliantly entertaining effect, avoiding post punk saturation with an easy style and wit


                                                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                            Barry says: Both 2020's '3D Routine' and 'Lines Redacted' from last year were big hits in the shop, singling mush out as a band unafraid of whimsical melody amongst the more furious moments of activity, and 'Down Tools' looks like it will only continue the legacy. Both beautifully tuneful and full of cleverly written, skilfully played hooks. Great stuff.

                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                                            Grief Thief
                                                                                                            Karoshi Karaoke
                                                                                                            Get On Yer Soapbox
                                                                                                            Human Resources
                                                                                                            Northern Safari
                                                                                                            Dense Traffic
                                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                                            Inkblot And The Wedge
                                                                                                            Group Of Death
                                                                                                            Groundswell
                                                                                                            Interlude
                                                                                                            Burn, Suffering!
                                                                                                            Down Tools

                                                                                                            Dinked Edition Flexi Disc:
                                                                                                            Hit The Bricks (non-album Track)

                                                                                                            Carrtoons

                                                                                                            Homegrown

                                                                                                              Producer and multi-instrumentalist CARRTOONS returns with his new album, Homegrown. Evolving his trademark Modern Motown sound, CARRTOONS continues to expand his already diverse musical repertoire in jazz, soul, hip-hop, and more. 

                                                                                                              The youngest son of jazz violinist Richard Carr (Bill Laswell, Bootsy Collins), Ben received his college degree in Jazz Performance, made his debut with Mad Satta, and opened for artists like Thundercat, Nick Hakim, Gabriel Garzon Montano, and Mac Ayres. Over the last few years, he has become one of the most sought-after producers in music through his eye-catching Instagram videos, powerful bass lines, and memorable melodies. His unique fills, phrases, and compositions made him an instant favorite, leading to recent collaborations with Robert Glasper, Alex Isley, Kiefer, and Butcher Brown.

                                                                                                              The success of Saturday Morning was the first sign of evolution in CARRTOONS career, with the album surpassing 2 million streams on Spotify in mid-February. The ad placement of his track "Give It Up" with Green Mountain Coffee gave him exposure to a whole new audience, while his guest feature on the Tiny Desk series rearranging the NPR theme songs for their 50th anniversary was also a hit. Starting 2022 off strong, CARRTOONS' recent work with The KOUNT led to the release of their ultra-viral video "On My Way" and the organic growth of over 100,000 followers in 4 weeks on Instagram.

                                                                                                              His continued strides in music, along with astonishing growth across several platforms is clear indication of Ben Carr's promise and potential. More than just an album; Homegrown characterizes the hard work, seeds sown, and natural growth of a gifted musician. An artist you will want to watch!

                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                              1. Homegrown
                                                                                                              2. Toons
                                                                                                              3. Groceries (feat Nigel Hall)
                                                                                                              4. Be There For You
                                                                                                              5. Lighta (feat Rae Khalil)
                                                                                                              6. Vamp
                                                                                                              7. Read My Lips (feat Floyd Fuji)
                                                                                                              8. Cadillac (feat Richard Carr,Pierce Allen)
                                                                                                              9. Hollywood
                                                                                                              10. Flamingos (feat Tennishu)
                                                                                                              11. Young Buck (feat DJ Harrison)
                                                                                                              12. Northern Lights (feat Fonville)
                                                                                                              13. Pressure Over Pleasure (feat Lo Artiz,Julia Zivic)
                                                                                                              14. White Widow

                                                                                                              Deliluh

                                                                                                              Fault Lines

                                                                                                                Learning about what Deliluh has been through these past two years brought the commands on a cassette player to mind: press rewind, forward, play and eject. The band, now a duo of Kyle Knapp and Julius Pedersen, relocated to Europe from their Toronto base with the ambition to plug into a continent that felt more cohesive in terms of a gig circuit and to map new spaces, both terrestrial and spiritual. This bold move came with a number of adjustments.The first was a new touring line-up, following the decision of Erika Wharton-Shukster and Erik Jude to stay in Canada. The second was dealing with the cosmic headfuck of a deadly global pandemic that put a stop to most things outside of staying alive. Looking back, Kyle Knapp sees the process as “somewhat of a crash course in survival and keeping calm. Overall it's taught us a lot about what we want to accomplish, both in the present and the long term.”

                                                                                                                The new record, Fault Lines, is the result. Knapp sees the record as reflecting the duo’s “growth away from documenting the spaces in our native Toronto, to going out and experiencing new worlds and communities, something which has allowed us to look further inward.” Transmitting and receiving, then. This duality is expressed through the album’s incredibly spacious and clear sound and a series of what sound like intense sermons, or internal monologues that rail against the injustices of this world. The songs introduce characters who grapple with values that are pitted against the expectations around them. Knapp talks of a guilt-ridden preacher in the song Credence who, in a struggle to keep his church afloat, turns to unethical dealings with dubious people. All the tracks “reveal biases that are challenged by external realities” in different ways, for better and for worse. And yet these characters keep on kicking against the pricks: even if the narrator in Body and Soul shakes his fist at what feels like a relentlessly grim future. “Don’t say the sun still rises to light my way”.

                                                                                                                Fault Lines is also a European record in its making. It first took shape at a session in Copenhagen in January 2019 where the band, still a four piece, recorded the beds before heading out on tour. The plan was to take a post-tour break and track some ideas that could be worked on remotely until everyone got back together in the early summer. Then everything “kind of went sideways”. Fault Lines stayed in an embryonic state for more than half a year, during which Deliluh reconfigured as a two piece. The lockdowns did, however, provide the time to rework material, or reposition ideas in line with the circumstances the pair found themselves in. Julius Pedersen: “We did a lot of heavy lifting at home together in Berlin and Marseille, taking turns training back and forth, throwing shit at the wall and experimenting.”

                                                                                                                Fault Lines is tough and powerful sounding: a survivor’s record. At times these sparse tracks sound full of menace, at other moments, as in X-Neighbourhood and the soundtracked poem, Mirror of Hope, a sense of remorse. Repetition plays a key role: the band “initially wanted the record to sound circular. (But) repetition and allowing things to breathe was important to these songs, not only to create tension, but to give significance to moments of change when they do occur.” The single Amulet is a mesmeric example of this; where a revolving pattern of notes sketches out a melody which irrigates the brooding, parched vocal line. The circular nature of the music can also trigger a feeling of otherworldliness, as heard on the hypnotic Syndicate II. The track is driven by a simple metallic riff and a caustic vocal line that maybe channels the ghost of an old singer… Regardless it operates in an interzone of its own making.

                                                                                                                After all this upheaval, does Deliluh still dream of going to another place? Are places different and do they really have a bearing on the creative path? “There's always another place calling from beyond. Without it we would be stuck and hopeless.

                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                Side A
                                                                                                                A1 Memorial
                                                                                                                A2 Body And Soul
                                                                                                                A3 Credence (Ash In The Winds Of Reason)
                                                                                                                A4 Amulet
                                                                                                                Side B
                                                                                                                B1 X-Neighbourhood
                                                                                                                B2 Syndicate II
                                                                                                                B3 Mirror Of Hope

                                                                                                                LIFE

                                                                                                                North East Coastal Town

                                                                                                                  LIFE are anchored by their hometown; the geography, history and community has always been the inspiration behind their creativity and on their third LP, North East Coastal Town, the band pay homage to Hull and its folk. North East Coastal Town is mature; it finds the band at the height of their powers as they carve-up a wide-screen, brooding body of work that is drenched in a sense of belonging and reflection but still impressively maintains their trademark swagger and ear for pop sensibilities and guitar hooks.

                                                                                                                  “Hull and the surrounding area runs through our DNA and has shaped us, weathered us, empowered us, embraced us and made us feel accepted.

                                                                                                                  North East Coastal Town is our love letter to the city. The album is an ode to kinship and relationship with its musical and lyrical spine picking out themes of love, desire, beauty, horror, chaos, pride and most importantly the sense of belonging.

                                                                                                                  Upon writing and recording this album it was important to us that this sense of belonging was also reflected in the album’s craft and therefore we used locally based studios, equipment, gear, and the community around us to establish what it means to belong in a North East Coastal Town.”

                                                                                                                  When the pandemic gripped the world in March 2020, LIFE were in the midst of promoting their acclaimed second album – A Picture Of Good Health (Sept 2019); they had just completed an arena support tour with Kaiser Chiefs in the UK, a triumphant main stage appearance at Rockaway Beach and flown to New York for New Colossus Festival ahead of a packed SXSW and a US tour with IDLES. They scrambled home on the last plane back from New York on 17th March.

                                                                                                                  The album was BBC 6 Music’s Album Of The Day, BBC Radio 1’s Album Of The Weekend and was one of BBC 6Music's Albums of The Year; all four singles from the album were play-listed at 6Music, and the band were nominated for two AIM Awards 2020 - Best Live Act and Best (Difficult) Second Album and they played major UK festivals including Glastonbury, Latitude, Reading Festival and many more.

                                                                                                                  They began rebuilding with ‘Friends Without Names’ – the shapeshifting first glimpse from the album – which was added to the A-List at BBC 6Music, and was recorded in the dead of night and hums with a dark, brooding and passionate atmosphere.

                                                                                                                  “Friends Without Names is the anchor and blueprint for our next record. In a remote part of Eastern England, close to the river Humber, we performed this track as if we were in trance; vibrating in a constant musical crescendo. Our aim was to push ourselves and harness differing time zones whilst giving in to the moments of beauty, horror, love and chaos depicted by the song’s lyrics.” (Mez Green, vocals)

                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                  SIDE A
                                                                                                                  1. Friends Without Names
                                                                                                                  2. Big Moon Lake
                                                                                                                  3. Incomplete
                                                                                                                  4. Almost Home
                                                                                                                  5. Duck Egg Blue
                                                                                                                  SIDE B
                                                                                                                  6. Shipping Forecast
                                                                                                                  7. Poison
                                                                                                                  8. Self Portrait
                                                                                                                  9. The Drug
                                                                                                                  10. Our Love Is Growing
                                                                                                                  11. All You Are

                                                                                                                  Just Mustard

                                                                                                                  Heart Under

                                                                                                                    ‘Heart Under’, Just Mustard’s second album and first for Partisan Records, is an album that asks you to forget what you know. At every turn, this remarkable record reconfigures and stretches the ideas and ambition of a rock band, and turns a year of lockdown and personal struggles into a breathtaking artistic statement.

                                                                                                                    The music the five friends from Dundalk, Ireland make is strikingly untraditional. Though to look at them, it appears that the band are a five-piece with uniform make-up of a vocalist, two guitarists, a bassist and a drummer, not a single one of them utilizes their instrument in a confined or regular fashion. Guitarists David Noonan and Mete Kalyoncuoglu make their six-strings shriek and wail, the sounds produced sounding like everything from whirring machinery to horror movie monsters. On the introduction to the dark and dangerous ‘Seed’, it’s half-way to being a techno beat. On a great deal of the album, this harshness is juxtaposed by watery, swelling guitar chords that add a dreamy texture to the record alongside the more aggressive, industrial tones. “This is just a piece of wood with some metal strings attached – you can do whatever you want with it,” Mete says of his approach to his instrument.

                                                                                                                    Behind them, drummer Shane Maguire uses the rim of his drums almost as much as the skins, providing a clattering, metallic backbeat. “I wanted to reinforce the clangy soundscapes of the songs,” he says of his approach to his instrument, and the record includes Shane whacking a metal staircase with a stick in the studio. Most of the melodies on offer poke through from Rob Clarke’s inventive, nodding basslines, which have nods to The Cure, who Just Mustard supported at a Dublin show in 2019. Rob’s sub bass also plays a pivotal role in the sound, creating a sound that feels like an anchor at the bottom of the sea and adding extra emotional weight to the record. “It leaves open the space that a normal bass guitar would normally occupy,” he explains, “and it’s leaving a lot of room in the mid frequencies for vocals and guitars.”

                                                                                                                    Then there’s Katie on vocals. On the roaring climax to single ‘I Am You’ and the melodic and rhythmic verses in the sprightly ‘Mirrors’, she becomes the transfixing focal point of the band, where past material has seen her voice drop back to within the rest of the band, become an extra texture in the soundscapes.

                                                                                                                    Since the release of debut album ‘Wednesday’ in mid-2018, the band have undergone a subtle but firm transition, through propulsive 2019 single ‘Frank’ and the gargantuan ‘Seven’ from later that year. While ‘Wednesday’ and subsequent singles pushed Just Mustard away from fitting snugly into the shoegaze category they once occupied, ‘Heart Under’ makes them stand alone as a band that sound like no other.

                                                                                                                    Across its 10 tracks, the album presents a coherent style and ethos – those scything guitars, Katie’s magical vocals – but still incorporates a wide and untethered vision. There are brooding, atmospheric rock songs (‘Still’, ‘In Shade’) and others that apply a lighter, dreamier touch (‘Sore’, ‘Mirrors’), all tied together with impeccable instrumentation and a united vision. On ‘Wednesday’, the band played with dreamier soundscapes and production techniques, and ‘Heart Under’ serves as the next stage of this development, with every instrument brilliantly pushed to its limit and every boundary of the band stretched.

                                                                                                                    “This album felt very blue to us,” Katie says of the overarching vision behind ‘Heart Under’. “There was sadness and sorrow in the album, and it felt like being underwater and under something very heavy. We let that influence the music, but it wasn’t a decision – it just naturally happened that way.” Flowing through every part of the album, which unpacks the grief and sorrow that Katie was experiencing at the time of its creation, the theme of water also stretches to its majestic artwork. Commissioned by the band and painted by British artist Graham Dean, it shows a subject up to their chest in water. “His paintings lined up with the emotions in the songs,” Katie says.

                                                                                                                    The title, ‘Heart Under’, comes from the lyric “the heart under its foot” from the song ‘Sore’, and throughout the recording, the band discussed the idea of wanting the listener to feel like they’re on a train going through a tunnel. In every facet of the album is a physical and emotional intensity, with each note of dissonant guitar, thwack of a drum or piercing lyric hitting you right in the chest, just as intended.

                                                                                                                    Primary recording took place in Attica Studios in rural Donegal, with additional recording and post-production then completed at home, and this extra time they gave themselves results in an even richer and more intricately composed record. Katie’s vocals were also recorded at home, with extra time and space that allowed her to give a more emotional and honest performance. “The emotion in the vocals is really important to me, and I could really zoom in and take my time when recording at home,” she reflects.

                                                                                                                    After the band had finished recording and producing the album, ‘Heart Under’ was pushed even further into singular territory when the band worked with mixer David Wrench, whose previous collaborators include Frank Ocean, Let’s Eat Grandma, Jamie xx, FKA twigs and beyond. “We wanted someone who had done pop and electronic records and didn’t just work within rock music,” Katie says, with David adding: “I learned so much from what he did with the record. He put the spotlight on some things in the mix that we had no idea about, and he created so much extra space.”

                                                                                                                    Though written in the depths of 2020, ‘Heart Under’ is a personal document of a time that doesn’t comment on realities of the outside world. “I always write about what’s going on inside my head rather than anyone else’s,” Katie says. “We all use music to escape, and it’s good to have a break from life with music.”

                                                                                                                    An album not categorisable by genre or era, ‘Heart Under’ is a guitar album with guitars that don’t sound like guitars, an album that stretches traditional frameworks to make a thrillingly unique sound, and an album like little else you'll ever hear.


                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                    Laura says: With brooding basslines, distorted guitar shards and pummelling drums Just Mustard plough their own very unique path through the buoyant Irish guitar scene. Katie Balls vocals go from gentle, almost whispered melody to wailing banshee like howls as their sound veers between propulsive intensity and haunting soundscapes. It's a stunning, inventive album that while sounding completely unique, wouldn't sound out of place among early 4AD releases.

                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                    Side A
                                                                                                                    A1 23
                                                                                                                    A2 Still
                                                                                                                    A3 I Am You
                                                                                                                    A4 Seed
                                                                                                                    A5 Blue Chalk
                                                                                                                    Side B
                                                                                                                    B1 Early
                                                                                                                    B2 Sore
                                                                                                                    B3 Mirrors
                                                                                                                    B4 In Shade
                                                                                                                    B5 Rivers

                                                                                                                    Melts

                                                                                                                    Maelstrom

                                                                                                                      Dublin five-piece MELTS announce their debut album produced by Daniel Fox of Gilla Band (FKA Girl Band). 

                                                                                                                      “Repetition is definitely the key to Melts,” says Gaz Earle. “It’s about just keeping it simple and driving and fucking stomping.” Earle (drums) makes up the Dublin five-piece along with Robbie Brady (keys/synth), Colm Giles (bass), Kenny (vocals) and Hugh O'Reilly (guitar). "Outlier is about the distance between, like the imaginable distance between objects in space and how leaving one way of life and moving on to another life falling into space, into the void. The title refers to an object or person existing at a distance from the centre of the system."This idea of keeping it simple has been woven into the fabric of the band since day one. Different line-ups were tried and experimented with and after an immediate connection at a rehearsal, Kenny was quickly in as singer. The inclusion of Kenny who, like all the other members have been in various other bands, unlocked something new and distinct in the group. Then once Brady joined on keys, an even more evolved tone to the band began to take shape.

                                                                                                                      What became clear was the band quickly outgrew their initial intentions of being a garage rock outfit. The raw, simplistic, primal nature of that approach remained intact but soon they expanded into immersive pulsing grooves. “We wanted to keep the rhythms just really straight and hypnotic,” says Earle. “The aim of the game was to try and get people into a trance when they are watching the gig. With bringing Robbie on board, as he's doing loads of stuff with sequencers and deadly synth bits, there grew a psychedelic hypnotic vibe to Melts.” A friend described the band as like a space rock version of The Doors, which they didn’t balk at.

                                                                                                                      Lyrically the album weaves between big picture state-of-the-world stuff to the more introspective and personal. The former can be heard on opener ‘Maelstrom’ which is about, according to Kenny, “a storm that sweeps through a town one day and causes an irreversible change to the order of things he song written from the point of view of someone caught in currents, beyond their own making and understanding the frustrations felt by someone who feels powerless against the effects of the upheaval.” ‘Spectral’, on the other hand, one of the album’s most tender moments that unfurls slowly with Kenny’s rich and resonant vocal delivery, is a track dedicated to the loss of a friend to suicide. As a whole, Kenny says, “the theme of the record is kind of based on coming to grips with the world around us.”

                                                                                                                      The end result is an album that gracefully yet potently merges psych rock with touches of post-rock-esque soundscapes, pulsing krautrock, all of which is driven by demented organ wig outs, engulfing waves of heavily textured guitar and a crisp rhythm section. While they land on a sound that is distinctly their own, their debut occupies something of a middle ground between Spacemen 3 and Primary Colours-era The Horrors. Or, as the band say themselves, something that sounds “driving and fucking stomping.” 


                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                                                      A1 Maelstrom
                                                                                                                      A2 Signal
                                                                                                                      A3 Outlier
                                                                                                                      A4 Circular
                                                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                                                      B1 Spectral
                                                                                                                      B2 Waltzer
                                                                                                                      B3 Skyward
                                                                                                                      B4 Tides

                                                                                                                      DITZ

                                                                                                                      The Great Regression

                                                                                                                        DITZ release their debut album, The Great Regression. The album was recorded by Ben Hampson and mastered by Kate Tavini.

                                                                                                                        The 10-track album has been a long time coming – the five-piece first came together in Brighton at the end of 2015 and released their debut EP the following year. There have been a few line-up changes along the way, but they have been settled since their breakthrough tracks ‘Gayboy’, ‘Total 90’ and a cover of Peaches’ ‘Fuck The Pain Away’ in 2019, which prompted Joe Talbot from Idles to proclaim “DITZ are the best band in Brighton, if not the world”. Even though the various lockdowns slowed the band’s momentum for a while, they turned the situation to their advantage, using the downtime to fine-tune this incredible debut.

                                                                                                                        Abrasive but accessible, The Great Regression is set to be one of the most important British guitar debuts of 2022. First single ‘Ded Würst’ – a ferocious mix of Gilla Band, Foals and a lyric bemoaning the moral quandary of minimum-wage employment – unsurprisingly became an instant favourite of Steve Lamacq on BBC Radio 6 Music. Other highlights include ‘The Warden’, a song all about being too intense, ironically set to an intense backing somewhere between Deftones and Mogwai, and ‘I Am Kate Moss’, which, according to singer Cal Francis, is about “the separation between your visual and personal identities, particularly within the context of masculinity and femininity”.

                                                                                                                        Such themes of insecurity and gender pop up a lot over the course of the album, as well as lots of references to the human body breaking and being harmed in unnatural ways, although there’s no one overarching concept, simply because the songs have come together over such a long period of time. The title is not so much a reference to society going backwards, but more the band’s penchant for childish jokes. “Sitting in a van all day can get silly,” laughs Cal.

                                                                                                                        That’s not to say The Great Regression is in any way light-hearted. It’s full of anger, rage and despair. ‘Three’ takes some text from Stanislaw Lem’s 1961 sci-fi novel Solaris and applies it to the hollow activism of everyone from big corporations to middle class uni students.

                                                                                                                        Other literary touchstones include Sylvia Plath, William Burroughs and Hubert Selby Jr, but even more influential is the band’s ever-growing pile of equipment. “We spent a lot of time during the recording process just trying to make unusual sounds out of pedals, or whatever we could find,” says Cal.

                                                                                                                        The album concludes with a cacophonous new version of ‘No Thanks, I’m Full’, which originally closed their debut EP in 2016. “Over the years the live version has evolved so much that we just had to record it again to do it justice,” explains Cal. “The lyrics are so old that I can’t place whether they are about the hazards of drinking or not drinking.”

                                                                                                                        It’s proof of just how far DITZ have come on in that time and a reminder that, in order to progress, you need to regress. And we’ll drink to that. Or not.


                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                                                        1. Clocks
                                                                                                                        2. Ded Wurst
                                                                                                                        3. Summer Of The Shark
                                                                                                                        4. Three
                                                                                                                        5. The Warden
                                                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                                                        1. I Am Kate Moss
                                                                                                                        2. Instinct
                                                                                                                        3. Hehe
                                                                                                                        4. Teeth
                                                                                                                        5. No Thanks, I’m Full

                                                                                                                        Dana Gavanski

                                                                                                                        When It Comes

                                                                                                                          There’s something mesmerising about the fingertips of Dana Gavanski. Conducting each note with a light gracefulness, they appear to dance whilst aiding their owner in expressing the stories behind each of her lighter-than-air tones. Stories which, on her new album When It Comes, may never have been heard if not for healing ‘lost’ vocal cords and a lesson in taking the rough with the smooth.

                                                                                                                          “In many ways this record feels like it is my first,” Dana tells. “When I could use my voice, I had to focus so there is an urgency and greater emotional trajectory than before… it’s very connected to vocal presence, which extended into an existential questioning of my connection to music. It felt like a battle at times, which I frequently lost.”

                                                                                                                          Arriving where introversion and extroversion meet, When It Comes is Dana’s most vulnerable record to date. A Canadian-Serbian artist unafraid of extremes, she seamlessly blends her love of music from the 50s-70s with mythology. Led by instinct in its purest form, Dana’s latest chapter is an ode to the voice as an instrument – its power, and how intricately it can deliver words to tug at, and tie knots in, every heartstring. “Words can be taken quite literally, but to me, a lot of the time, they are pivots. They point in a direction but don’t necessarily stay there,” she says.

                                                                                                                          Just as Dana’s debut Yesterday Is Gone and her covers EP Wind Songs were lauded for their intimacy captured through an innate sense of melody to convey a mood, they traced a timeline of Dana’s teenage years in Vancouver, a move to Montreal and visiting family homes for kitchen talks with her “Baka” (grandma) in Belgrade / Serbia. Her latest was started in Montreal before ending in Belgrade and whilst expressive with French Yé-yé flourishes – offers something altogether more atmospheric and widescreen.

                                                                                                                          “Yesterday Is Gone consisted of straightforward pop songs, this album is about searching for something to excite me back into songwriting,” Dana reveals. “It’s about finding the origins of my connection to music, that tenuous but stubborn and strong link - why it draws me and what if anything, I can learn from it. The album title has a heaviness to it but also a lightness, depending on your frame of mind. It’s about being open, and letting it come whatever it is, without judgement.”

                                                                                                                          Recorded in London, the original ideas for the record were played out on Dana’s toy Casiotone. Returning to Capitol K’s Total Refreshment Centre (TRC) with partner James Howard, the pair co-produced the songs together and felt very much at home. “James has an effortless musicality and we work together so well. The TRC is a special place, like a community centre,” she recalls. “It’s very understated but important to the people who come through it. It’s a rehearsal space, a recording studio, and there are a handful of music studios.”

                                                                                                                          Opening with music box sweetness, ‘I Kiss The Night’s twinkling piano melody paves the way for the baroque Wurlitzer-like nursery rhyme of ‘Bend & Fall’ and mystical lullaby ‘Under The Sky.’ Alongside humour and caricature (‘The Reaper’), mythological romance and spirituality (‘Knowing to Trust’) and idiosyncratic carnival arpeggio grooves (‘Indigo Highway’), the squelchy staccato and subtle jazzy flecks of ‘The Day Unfolds’ and tension release of ‘Letting Go’ dazzle like bokeh in a Nick Drake haze. The autumnal hymnal of ‘Lisa’ meanwhile, was one of the first, more fictional tracks written for the record, from the viewpoint of the sea, watching the protagonist pass by day after day, offering a metaphorical reflection on the natural world around us. “We don’t realize we are surrounded by all this beauty; we’re shut up inside, rushing to get to work, buying books online without ever leaving home. It’s about focus, recognising what’s in front of you.”

                                                                                                                          Now planning her headline tour with an expanded 5-piece line-up and taking to the stage for the first time since touring with Porridge Radio, Damian Jurado and Chris Cohen, Dana is currently perfecting her live performance by practising a voice ever more elaborate, and perfecting those subtle hand gestures to match. “I’m so inspired by David Bowie’s performances and discovered he practised mime with Lindsay Kemp early on in his career,” she says of seeking inspiration. “I’ve done some mime classes since and it’s become good practice to go deeper into the body and be less controlled by the humility of the mind.”


                                                                                                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                          Barry says: There are echoes here, without a doubt of Cyrk era Cate Le Bon, in Gavanski's swooning vocal style and keen melodic ear. There are moments of brittle, thoughtful vulnerability and unease but the general, overwhelming sense is of a warm and familiar wonder. Evocative and satisfying, 'When It Comes' is a beauty.

                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                          1. Kiss The Night
                                                                                                                          2. Bend Away And Fall
                                                                                                                          3. Letting Go
                                                                                                                          4. Under The Sky
                                                                                                                          5. The Day Unfolds
                                                                                                                          6. Indigo Highway
                                                                                                                          7. Lisa
                                                                                                                          8. The Reaper
                                                                                                                          9. Knowing To Trust

                                                                                                                          Tess Parks

                                                                                                                          And Those Who Were Seen Dancing

                                                                                                                            Toronto-born, London-based artist Tess Parks returns with her long-awaited new album ‘And Those Who Were Seen Dancing’ via Fuzz Club Records. Following years of international touring and a lengthy list of critically-acclaimed collaborations with Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Anton Newcombe in recent years (most recently the duo’s self-titled 2018 LP), the new album will be Parks’ first full-length solo offering since her much-loved debut album, ‘Blood Hot’, was released back in 2013 on Alan McGee’s 359 Music label.

                                                                                                                            “In my mind, this album is like hopscotch”, Parks says: “These songs were pieced together over time in London, Toronto and Los Angeles with friends and family between August 2019 and March 2021. So many other versions of these songs exist. The recording and final completion of this album took over two years and wow - the lesson I have learned the most is that words are spells. If I didn’t know it before, I know it now for sure. I only want to put good out into the universe.” A growing disillusionment with the state of the world paired with an injury that stopped Parks from being able to play guitar and piano for months meant the album was nearly shelved.

                                                                                                                            “I really felt discouraged to complete this album”, she recalls: “I stopped listening to music for honestly about a year altogether and turned to painting instead. I really had to convince myself again that it’s important to just share whatever good we can - having faith in ourselves to know that our lights can shine on and on through other people and for other people. The thought of anyone not sharing their art or being shy of anything they create seems like a real tragedy to me. Even if it’s not perfect, you’re capturing a moment.” Recorded over a two year period but with songs, lyrics and ideas dating back over a decade in some form, ‘And Those Who Were Seen Dancing’ is an album full of such moments, people and places.

                                                                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                            Barry says: The brilliant Tess Parks brings another selection of woozy psychedelic ballads, imbued with a glimmer of 1970's folk and Americana but without a doubt a sound all of her own. Lysergic, heady and hypnotic audio bliss.

                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                            1. WOW
                                                                                                                            2. Suzy & Sally's Eternal Return
                                                                                                                            3. Happy Birthday Forever
                                                                                                                            4. We Are The Music Makers And We Are The Dreamers Of Dreams
                                                                                                                            5. Brexit At Tiffany's
                                                                                                                            6. Old Life
                                                                                                                            7. Do You Pray?
                                                                                                                            8. Good Morning Glory
                                                                                                                            9. I See Angels
                                                                                                                            10. Saint Michael

                                                                                                                            HighSchool

                                                                                                                            Forever At Last

                                                                                                                              One of the year’s most exciting new acts HighSchool are joining forces with Dinked to release their acclaimed debut EP (‘Forever at Last’) for the first time on vinyl.

                                                                                                                              The tipped Melbourne trio, who recently upped sticks to move to London, have been making a name for themselves with a brilliant indie-pop sound full of stylish, gothic excess - DIY nailed it when calling their tracks “deliciously dark dance numbers that’ll be stuck in your head for days.”

                                                                                                                              ‘Forever at Last’ is an infectious six-track introduction to the band that features the singles ‘Frosting’, ‘New York, Paris and London’ and ‘Sirens’. Surfacing digitally late-last year, the band are delighted to finally being announcing the EP’s first vinyl pressing with Dinked. This first press is being limited to just 300 copies, coming on clear vinyl complete with an exclusive numbered print signed by the band and die cut sticker.


                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                              Side A
                                                                                                                              1. Frosting
                                                                                                                              2. New York, Paris And London
                                                                                                                              3. De Facto
                                                                                                                              Side B
                                                                                                                              1. Sirens
                                                                                                                              2. Jerry
                                                                                                                              3. Forever At Last

                                                                                                                              Yama Warashi

                                                                                                                              Crispy Moon

                                                                                                                                Yoshino Shigihara came into 2019 needing a change. The Japanese artist had been based in Bristol ever since co-founding the now defunct Maloya-infuenced raucous psychedelia collective Zun Zun Egui. She then blossomed on her own across an EP and two albums of more meditative but no less territorially transcendent records as Yama Warashi. As in her music, though, Yoshino has always had a sense of wanderlust and it was perhaps no surprise that she’d eventually want to move again – this time to London.

                                                                                                                                “Moving to London gave me the chance to work with more diverse musicians” Yoshino says. “And I wanted to be here too because of the high creative energy, the diversity of the music and art here and the people who live here.”

                                                                                                                                The first material to come out of her relocation is a bold advancement of her sound, her third album Crispy Moon. Recorded at the Total Refreshment Centre in London with Kristian Claig Robinson, with most of the mixing coming from Hannes Plattmeire and mastering by Zun Zun Egui guitarist Stephen Kerrison, there are new contributing members, including Cathy Lucas of Vanishing Twin (with whom Yama toured with in 2021), Aletta Verwoerd on drums and Mermaid Chunky’s Moina Walker on sax. Compared to the more lo-fi, homespun feel of early releases such as Moon Zero and Moon Egg, there’s larger brush strokes at play, a bigger sound and an understated but self-assured grandeur.

                                                                                                                                Much of the move to London and Yoshino’s experiences of being in the capital have made their way into the themes of the record. For Yoshino, though, while the lyrics are important, they’re also largely personal. The drive for her is to get across the universality of her music, to keep an open ear and absorb everything that she can before returning it back out into the world. Moving to London has only strengthened that for her, with new collaborators, fresh experiences and altered perspectives. Crispy Moon is the colourfully brilliant end result.


                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                Side A
                                                                                                                                1. Makkuroi Mizu
                                                                                                                                2. Dividual Individual
                                                                                                                                3. Saku Saku
                                                                                                                                4. Umi No Mon
                                                                                                                                Side B
                                                                                                                                1. Ha Ha No Uta
                                                                                                                                2. Makai No Keyaku
                                                                                                                                3. Dou Dou Meguri
                                                                                                                                4. Yuru Yuru

                                                                                                                                Hatchie

                                                                                                                                Giving The World Away

                                                                                                                                  The second album from Hatchie, ‘Giving The World Away’ is the truest introduction to the songwriter at the helm of the project, Harriette Pilbeam. Although her sound arrived fully-formed, a dazzling dream-pop and shoegaze tangle, it’s here that she distills the core of herself into a record.

                                                                                                                                  “There's more to me than just writing songs about being in love or being heartbroken -- there's a bigger picture than that,” Pilbeam explains. “This album really just feels like the beginning to me, and scratching the surface – and even though it’s my third release as Hatchie, I feel like I’m rebooting from scratch.”

                                                                                                                                  For Pilbeam, that bigger picture explored here includes confronting her anxieties after decades of compartmentalisation; realising her own self-confidence and self-esteem; taking control of her own narrative, and her place in both her professional and personal life. On ‘Giving the World Away,’ she held herself to higher standards, especially with personal lyrical precision. At the time she started working on it, she was caught in a strange headspace. When 2018 EP Sugar & Spice and subsequent debut LP Keepsake both arrived to critical acclaim and catapulted Hatchie into an international spotlight, she felt both unsure of herself and an intense, self-imposed pressure to keep going forward. Trapped in constant motion, Pilbeam was unable to be present or appreciative of herself, both professionally and personally.

                                                                                                                                  She tackles that struggle directly in the moody single “Quicksand,” written with GRAMMY-nominated Olivia Rodrigo collaborator Dan Nigro. “I used to think that this was something I could die for / I hate admitting to myself that I was never sure,” she sings, inverting the thesis of one of her early break-out singles “Sure.” And then, a few lines later, she regains her footing -- in her musicality, and in herself: “It’s all I know, and I’m taking it back.”

                                                                                                                                  “Quicksand is about dealing with the realisation that you'll never be satisfied” Pilbeam comments. “I started writing it when I was home between tours in 2019 before finishing it with Joe Agius and Dan Nigro the next year. I was feeling guilty and ungrateful for not being happy about a few different things in my life that were technically going well. I had to work through some tough learned thought processes and emotions that had been working away for years to try to understand how to be happy with my present, and stop fixating on my past and future. The video digs deeper into showing this juxtaposition of such sadness and anger despite being surrounded by glamour and grandeur."

                                                                                                                                  Director Nathan Castiel adds: “For ‘Quicksand', I created a video that plays off of some tropes of Hollywood glamour in a melancholy and surreal way while giving Harriette room to perform and express the song's raw emotions. We leaned into a neon-tinged after hours aesthetic and shot on 16mm which added a griminess to the opulent locations and set pieces.”

                                                                                                                                  “Quicksand” sets up the rest of the record; an album about self-confidence, about reclamation, about the strange time in young adulthood where you begin to finally be able to see yourself clearly.

                                                                                                                                  Produced by Jorge Elbrecht, also recently GRAMMY-nominated and known for his work with Sky Ferreira, Japanese Breakfast, and Wild Nothing, ‘Giving the World Away’ is Hatchie’s most thunderous, sprawling work yet. Featuring extensive input from longtime Hatchie collaborator Joe Agius, it takes the celestial, shimmering shoegaze and pop sensibilities of her earlier releases, but with the volume knob cranked up tenfold. Built out with percussion from Beach House drummer James Barone, it’s synthed-out, sonic opulence, a more structured and ornate musicality with traces of ‘90s trip-hop and acid house influences.

                                                                                                                                  Pilbeam initially intended for these songs to go in a higher-energy direction -- she had the distinct vision of a Hatchie show turned dance party, inviting more movement and vibrancy into her live shows. But then, between Covid and the lockdowns in Australia, Pilbeam retreated more into herself, and that introspection and self-discovery served as the true inspiration for the record. Again and again across ‘Giving the World Away,’ she returns to that same theme – dismantling internalized shame and finding gratitude and steadiness, and finally being able to trust herself. Pilbeam grew up the youngest in her family, a self-described “big baby,” but says the last year and a half gave her the space to understand herself better. After years of emotional avoidance, here she excavates her fears fully.

                                                                                                                                  ‘Giving the World Away’ is an album about self-confidence, about reclamation, about the strange time in young adulthood where you begin to finally be able to see yourself clearly. Incisive and probing, ‘Giving the World Away’ is the clearest look at Pilbeam yet, and a relic of the power and bravery that spring forth from embracing vulnerability and putting your heart on the line.


                                                                                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                  Barry says: Crystalline synths and rolling bass licks permeate the retro-tinged percussion and dreamy echoic vocals, bringing to mind the perfect pop of Tegan & Sara mixed with walls of shoegaze fuzz.

                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                                                  1) Lights On
                                                                                                                                  2) This Enchanted
                                                                                                                                  3) Twin
                                                                                                                                  4) Take My Hand
                                                                                                                                  5) The Rhythm
                                                                                                                                  6) Quicksand
                                                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                                                  7) Thinking Of
                                                                                                                                  8) Giving The World Away
                                                                                                                                  9) The Key
                                                                                                                                  10) Don't Leave Me In The Rain
                                                                                                                                  11) Sunday Song
                                                                                                                                  12) Til We Run Out Of Air

                                                                                                                                  BONUS TRACKS On Download Card:
                                                                                                                                  Back Into Your Arms (Hatchie's Version)
                                                                                                                                  Don't Leave Me In The Rain (Demo)
                                                                                                                                  Quicksand (Demo)
                                                                                                                                  The Rhythm (Demo)

                                                                                                                                  Blue Hours sees the much-loved folk-rock duo – made up of Andrew Davie and Kevin Jones – once again team up with producer Ian Grimble on what is one of their most personal records to date.

                                                                                                                                  Speaking about the new album, Davie says: “Blue Hours is a kind of imaginary space you get into at night, a place where you process difficult things or where you try to figure everything out.”

                                                                                                                                  Themes on the album include both self-reflection and mental health after both struggled with the latter in recent years. “It’s the main over-arching theme with this record,” Davie explains. The group, who have worked with mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) previously added: “It probably speaks to our struggles and hopefully many other people’s too. Men are not very good at talking. We’re not really taught how to – men have no idea how to talk about this stuff, certainly to each other.”

                                                                                                                                  The pair describe the conceptual blue hours headspace that gives the new album its title as being “somewhere between a hotel, a mental health hospital, a bar that stays open later than anywhere else, a paradise, a dream, a nightmare and an endless sea of corridors and staircases leading you to rooms that represent memories – good, bad, happy or difficult.”

                                                                                                                                  Despite the album’s challenging themes, it’s an album drenched in hope too. “We wanted this to be a celebration of music,” Jones continues. “I think that informed some of the bolder decision making on this record. At a time when music was so distant, it felt important to make an album that sounded hopeful, celebratory, ambitious and beautiful in spite of the heavy subject matter in some of the songs.” Jones adds: “It was almost like we needed to shout louder than before because we felt that there were more barriers between the audience and us. We needed something to transcend that.”


                                                                                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                  Barry says: This is another beautiful outing from Bear's Den, both orchestral and tender in equal measure. These are grand, bold pieces with a brittle and fragile core, both cathartic and touching.

                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                                                  New Ways
                                                                                                                                  Blue Hours
                                                                                                                                  Frightened Whispers
                                                                                                                                  Gratitude
                                                                                                                                  Shadows
                                                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                                                  All That You Are
                                                                                                                                  Spiders
                                                                                                                                  Selective Memories
                                                                                                                                  On Your Side
                                                                                                                                  All The Wrong Places

                                                                                                                                  Quinquis

                                                                                                                                  Seim

                                                                                                                                    “I went back to my roots,” says Émilie Tiersen (née Quinquis). “And I realised how much Breton culture was a part of me.”

                                                                                                                                    Émilie Tiersen has, over the course of two albums and several years, made music as Tiny Feet and is now, with the release of Seim, her debut for Mute, known as QUINQUIS. The name change is symbolic; simultaneously paying homage to her personal and family history by referencing her maiden name, as well as representing a fresh start musically. “It’s been a new start for many things,” Émilie says. “Self-acceptance has been a really big thing for me.”

                                                                                                                                    From forging a deeper connection to her own culture, history and identity, to exploring new musical terrain and becoming a mother, it’s been a period filled with significant change. It was during this time that she began to explore new ideas. “I was on tour with Yann [her husband, Yann Tiersen] and our baby,” she recalls. “During my baby's nap I created a rule for myself: to come up with one new idea in every new city. From the very beginning this was a journey.”

                                                                                                                                    Soon people began to join Émilie on this journey. Characters - some from her own life, others rooted in the history of Breton culture - began to come alive in song ideas. She discovered Ankou, a servant of death in Breton mythology who comes to see you in the year that you die; she explored Seiz Breur, a 1923 Breton art movement founded by a young woman in the very same small village she is from; she tapped into the lives of friends, exploring a rich tapestry of people, places, emotions and stories all tied together by a shared commonplace: Brittany. “I put the stories of those people around mine so that I could have them share this journey with me.”

                                                                                                                                    “It’s been a really rich and nourishing period,” Émilie says. “I've discovered what it is to be a mother. To have a son has answered many questions I had about life and roots, and so this was the first step to a very deep discovery. I am raising my child in the Breton language, so there was this kind of rebooting of the whole system.”

                                                                                                                                    Once these ideas began to mutate into something more musical, she connected with Gareth Jones, celebrated producer who has worked with groups such as Liars, Depeche Mode and Apparat. He initially offered to play some synths but their partnership grew into something more. “The record revealed itself in the back-and-forth Gareth and I had,” she says. “It was really unexpected because Gareth and I are quite the opposite. We are really different on paper but through this album we've shared something unexpected. He’s got a bit of a mentor aura - he was the light to my darkness.”

                                                                                                                                    The result of their work is one that merges sparse electronics, immersive atmospherics, and deft melodies, all of which are carried by Émilie’s tender yet quietly soaring vocals. The opening ‘Adkrog’ (aptly translated as ‘Start Again’) stirs the album to life with soothing yet unpredictable pulsations, as though a new world is awakening and working out its newfound surroundings. “It's about finding the energy in environment and nature,” she explains. “When I was feeling desperate, I sat outside and I prayed for nature to give me some answers. This song is about that - if you just let go then nature gives you an answer.” ‘Setu’, on the other hand, a story about the aforementioned Ankou is driven by scattered beats, floating vocals and considered sonic textures that bubble up from peaceful to potent.

                                                                                                                                    The subtle arrangements across the album are reflective of a philosophy Émilie was exploring. “I'd been reading into wabi-sabi,” she explains. “It's a Japanese way of thinking about finding beauty in imperfections. The idea was to accept my imperfections and find the beauty in simple and small things. Minimalism has impacted the album - to try to find a way to stay humble.”

                                                                                                                                    Collaborations also extend to Ólavur Jákupsson, who sings in Faroese on ‘Run’ (which translates to ‘Hill’), a song about being woken up by a blast of cold wind on top of a hill, which melds woozy tones, plucked strings, engulfing atmospheres and Émilie’s intimate and whispered vocals. On ‘Netra Ken’ the writer and endurance cyclist Emily Chappell features, reading an extract from her book (in Welsh) “Where There’s A Will”, capturing her determination and resilience. Talking about the use of language on the album, she explains, "I think languages are a living way of telling people’s mind and culture, their diversity brings us closer and helps us understand better. That’s why I was happy to have Welsh and Faroese along with Breton in the record… they are somehow cultures that seem close to mine.”

                                                                                                                                    To make it even more unique, Émilie sings throughout in Breton. “Singing in the Breton language made me realise what I was made from,” she says. “Everything was suddenly easier and it gave me more freedom. It's a very special language and so to write interesting lyrics was a process of researching but it was so nourishing to discover new stuff about nature or people thanks to that language.”

                                                                                                                                    Nature is key to the album and lends itself to the title, as well as key themes in individual songs. The album title Seim translates as “sap”. “It's really about when you have low energy,” Tiersen says, “and you need to recollect the sap so that the tree gets green again. The whole album was really about making me green again. The more I recorded music, the more I felt green.”

                                                                                                                                    This sense of rejuvenation, rebirth and a musical awakening coincided with Émilie plunging into her own community, history and culture. “The more I was learning about myself, the more I was discovering the people around me,” she says. “Now I'm on the City Council here on Ushant [the remote Breton island she and her family live on]. The more I go into it, the more involved I am in the Ushant community. I really felt during these past few years that people have been so supportive.”

                                                                                                                                    This feeling of being lifted by the community is reflected in ‘Ôg’ a story about a woman from Ushant whose husband went to work at sea (the oil tanker Betelgeuse) while she was 8 months pregnant. All 52 men died, 51 on board, with the exception of her husband who died trying to make it ashore.” The widows of the 51 men on board came together to help the woman with clothes and other things for the baby. “This story really resonated with me.”

                                                                                                                                    This sense of interconnectedness leads to the album being a multifaceted one. It is deeply personal and introspective yet also collaborative and expansive. It is rooted in both historical and modern stories. It is an album that connects worlds while being entirely its own. “There is something cosmic about it,” says Émilie. “I don't know how to explain that but the way it happened with Gareth, and the way everything just suddenly all came together feels like cosmic harmony.”

                                                                                                                                    It’s also an album that brings to life, in a singular and contemporary way, the lives, stories and people of the Breton culture and its language. “The album was a way for me to tell stories of the people here. I really felt that during the whole process that through stories I could tell the history of Brittany or Ushant. It's an album that is full of ghosts. I'm happy with that. I have a good relationship with ghosts.” 

                                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                    Barry says: Seim is a striking collection of swooning electronic anthems, rooted in club music, but tempered into a hazy post-party wooze, all topped with soft French vocals. It's a wonderfully written evocative set of electronic anthems, and perfectly at home on Mute.

                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                    1. Adkrog
                                                                                                                                    2. Eñvor
                                                                                                                                    3. Setu
                                                                                                                                    4. Run
                                                                                                                                    5. Mintin
                                                                                                                                    6. Estren
                                                                                                                                    7. Netra Ken
                                                                                                                                    8. Ôg
                                                                                                                                    9. An Divare
                                                                                                                                    10. Te

                                                                                                                                    Crows

                                                                                                                                    Beware Believers

                                                                                                                                      London four-piece Crows release their highly anticipated second album, ‘Beware Believers’, via Bad Vibrations Records. Conjuring a dark and visceral post-punk that’s been hardened by years of notoriously rowdy live shows, Crows have amassed a legion of die-hard fans since they formed back in 2015 and cultivated a singular, much-adored presence in the British alternative music scene. Equal parts ferocious and hedonistic, the ‘Beware Believers’ LP arrives off the back of their critically acclaimed 2019 debut ‘Silver Tongues’, international touring and festival appearances, and shared stages with the likes of IDLES, Wolf Alice, Girl Band, Metz, Slaves and Protomartyr.

                                                                                                                                      Following the release of their long-awaited debut album on the IDLES-run Balley Records back in 2019, Crows immediately set to work on its follow-up and by January 2020 they were already back in the studio tracking what would become the ‘Beware Believers’ LP and then Covid hit. “Once we knew Covid was here to stay, we took the first break we’ve taken since we released our first single ‘Pray’ in 2015. Being locked down for three months unable to finish the last bits of the record was very frustrating but it did mean we could come back to the album with fresh ears and make sure it sounded like it should: a true representation of Crows.” Loud, cathartic and abrasive a quintessential Crows record it certainly is.

                                                                                                                                      “Beware Believers has felt like a marathon, a real endurance test that’s been a long, winding road filled with highs and lows and plenty of twists and turns”, frontman James Cox says: “The majority of the themes on the album came from what was going on in the world around Summer 2019 when we started writing the album. Covid wasn't in our lives and the biggest impact was Brexit and the madness our government were putting us through. I was reading a lot of J.G. Ballard and Kurt Vonnegut, mad dystopian novels, whilst all this craziness was going on around us and it was a weird headspace to get into.”


                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                                                                      1. Closer Still
                                                                                                                                      2. Garden Of England
                                                                                                                                      3. Only Time
                                                                                                                                      4. Slowly Separate
                                                                                                                                      5. Moderation
                                                                                                                                      6. Healing
                                                                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                                                                      7. Room 156
                                                                                                                                      8. Meanwhile
                                                                                                                                      9. Wild Eyed & Loathsome
                                                                                                                                      10. The Servant
                                                                                                                                      11. Sad Lad

                                                                                                                                      Honeyglaze

                                                                                                                                      Honeyglaze

                                                                                                                                        We've managed to get our hands on a lovely signed test pressing from Honeyglaze, pre-order the album now to be in with a chance to win it!
                                                                                                                                        NPN*


                                                                                                                                        Honeyglaze are the South London based, Haiku loving trio comprised of vocalist and guitarist Anouska Sokolow, bassist Tim Curtis, and Yuri Shibuichi on drums.

                                                                                                                                        Born out of lead songwriter Sokolow’s un-desire to be a solo-act, the group met officially at their first ever rehearsal- just three days ahead of what was to become a near-residency, at their favoured ‘The Windmill’, Brixton. Forming a mere eighteen-months ahead of a subsequent eighteen-months of mandatory solitude, a parallel that’s both aligned and universally un-timely, Honeyglaze, at first appearance, are a group who play with chance, time, and synergetic fate, in mannerisms few others are able to do.

                                                                                                                                        Pricking the ears of seminal producer Dan Carey and his team of merry taste-makers: Speedy Wunderground (Tiña, Squid, Black Country New Road), the Speedy Wunderground / Honeyglaze partnership would manifest into a dynamic that, despite not having met prior, quite simply, just worked.

                                                                                                                                        Much like the eponymously debuted statements of contemporary folk-singer Bedouine’s ‘Bedouine’, ‘Crosby, Stills and Nash’, or, dare we suggest Madonna’s ‘Madonna’, Honeyglaze the album presents to the world an audibly picturesque documentation of soul-searching, in all its figment’s of reality; a proclamation of cultivated intent which in turn creates a subliminal safe-space between relatability and self-projection, and creative-comradery paired with introspective artistry.

                                                                                                                                        A self-described “opposite to a concept album” that sonically encapsulates the who, what, where and how of their individual circumstances coming together as one, Honeyglaze is a meticulously transformative feat of which, in their own eyes, is a “quite accurate” sonic encapsulation of who the trio believe to be.

                                                                                                                                        This is storytelling at its most soulful, and Honeyglaze presents human-instinct in a manner that accepts all of the insecurities that come from their present adolescence, whilst acknowledging the formative maturity that’s earned when we allow ourselves to embrace the unknown, of our futures ahead.

                                                                                                                                        “If someone is going to find you special – then you want to show what’s most special about yourself” notes Curtis. “Then you can do what you want from there.”

                                                                                                                                        Mixing the personal with romanticised ideals in ways that are simultaneously heart-wrenching, and humorous to a dead-pan effect, there is no one trajectory for Honeyglaze who’s greatest ability, is finding ways to present what’s written in-between the lines, in moments of beautifully well-versed clarity.

                                                                                                                                        In their own words: “Hi we are Honeyglaze, and there’s no time to explain.”

                                                                                                                                        NPN*
                                                                                                                                        For the NPN option email us at mail@piccadillyrecords.com with Honeyglaze TP - NPN in the subject.


                                                                                                                                        STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                        Barry says: There are moments here of angular off-kilter pop to contrast the more straight up melodic pieces like 'Shadows' or the stumbling beauty of 'Burglar', but it's in this juxtaposition that the album's true charm lies, is that these moments can sit next to each-other and work together to great effect. Cleverly written, delightfully weird but full of moments of undeniable melodic genius.

                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                                                                        Start
                                                                                                                                        Shadows
                                                                                                                                        Creative Jealousy
                                                                                                                                        I Am Not Your Cushion
                                                                                                                                        Female Lead
                                                                                                                                        Burglar

                                                                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                                                                        Half Past
                                                                                                                                        Deep Murky Water
                                                                                                                                        Young Looking
                                                                                                                                        Souvenir
                                                                                                                                        Childish Things

                                                                                                                                        Holodrum

                                                                                                                                        Holodrum

                                                                                                                                          FFO: Arthur Russell, Stealing Sheep, Neu!, Agar Agar, Galaxians.

                                                                                                                                          Holodrum are a new disco-infused synth-pop group, who feature members of Hookworms, Yard Act, Cowtown, Virginia Wing, Drahla and more.

                                                                                                                                          Maybe Holodrum were destined to start at this point. This might be the first time they’ve all officially worked together, but between Emily Garner (vocals), Matthew Benn (synth/bass/production), Jonathan Nash (drums), Jonathan Wilkinson (guitar), Sam Shjipstone (guitar/vocals), Christopher Duffin (sax/synth) and Steve Nuttall (percussion) they’ve shared bands, mixed each other’s records, promoted live shows and made music videos together in and around Leeds. As Holodrum, this is the seven-piece’s debut album, but the interlocking grooves and hot headiness of their repeato-rock-via-CBGBs dopamine hits have in one way or other been fermenting for years.

                                                                                                                                          “When it comes to doing music most bands fall between two extremes of doing it for some goal or as an end to itself” says Shjipstone. “I think Holodrum is about the joy and complexity of living, and I just hope to god everyone gets to have a good time doing it.”

                                                                                                                                          Ultimately the core of the group comes from Shjipstone and his former Hookworms bandmates Benn, Nash and Wilkinson. After their abrupt dissolution in late 2018, the four of them spent six months apart; Benn still had Xam Duo, his ongoing project with Virginia Wing and some-time James Holden & The Animal Spirits live member Duffin, Nash remains vocalist and guitarist of long-running DIY rockers Cowtown and helms his solo project Game_Program; and Shjipstone plays guitar with Yard Act. However, the four of them missed the sixth sense synergy they’d built-up playing together over a decade and soon enough demos were being swapped and new ideas were discussed.

                                                                                                                                          The vision of a large live electronic ensemble formed quickly. Friends were added: Duffin and Nuttall – who was keen to resurrect the double percussion interplay that he and Nash had been exploring as part of motorik trio Nope – joined first. Then animator and VIDE0 singer Garner crystallised the line-up by joining on vocals.

                                                                                                                                          “Apart from Emily, all of us had actually played together before in a covers band at a New Year’s Eve party at the Brudenell Social Club a couple of years ago, so we knew we could have fun together” says Benn. “So we set up to be a live party band early on. We wanted lots of people on stage having fun, playing for people that also wanted to have fun. It makes sense we take inspiration from bands like Tom Tom Club and Liquid Liquid; they were trying to help people to party at a point when New York was quite a scary and dangerous place – we’re doing the same, albeit in the face of a decaying world and a global pandemic.”

                                                                                                                                          Covid-19 hasn’t given them much opportunity to do that yet, with two fledgling shows in late 2019 to their name before festival appearances at the likes of Bluedot, Sounds From The Other City and Gold Sounds were scuppered last year. However, the six tracks on Holodrum crackle with the energy of the dancefloor. Opening cut 'Lemon Chic' – described by Garner as her “workout track” – starts out sparsely, with tight drum claps and burbling synths holding a teetering suspense before the whole thing’s prised open, allowing beaming saxophone skronk to shine in. Garner’s vocals bob and weave around the syncopations of the track’s building cacophony.

                                                                                                                                          It sets the stall for an album heavy on euphoria, built atop crisp interplaying percussion and acid-flecked grooves. At times Shjipstone provides a raw counterpoint on vocals, while elsewhere - like on the strutting, swirling disco of 'Free Advice' and 'Low Light'’s late night ping pong synths - the pair indulge in playful call and response as the instrumentation builds and contorts around them. 'Stage Echo' provides a respite of sorts halfway through, a swirling, fever dream of a track that peaks with big squelchy frequencies and cavernous reverb, before the album returns to its repetitious exercises in body-moving catharsis – underpinned at all times by a relentlessly propulsive rhythm section.


                                                                                                                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                          Barry says: Neon synths, bright Go-Team-like vocals and funky disco beats come together into a wonderfully danceable maelstrom. There are parts that sound like 80's lipservice (that guitar sound is particularly evocative) but it never strays into anything standardised, remaining as confounding as the first notes would suggest. Wonderfully produced, and great fun throughout.

                                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                          1. Lemon Chic
                                                                                                                                          2. No Dither
                                                                                                                                          3. Free Advice
                                                                                                                                          4. Stage Echo
                                                                                                                                          5. Low Light
                                                                                                                                          6. Clean

                                                                                                                                          Dinked Edition Flexi Exclusive:
                                                                                                                                          7. Hypercoster

                                                                                                                                          Hannah Peel & Paraorchestra

                                                                                                                                          The Unfolding

                                                                                                                                            There are pieces of music that seek to tell us deeper stories. Others harness the talents of the players at their disposal in adventurous ways. Then there are the rare, generous works that make us think back to our roots as human beings and to our shared beginnings in the universe, that lift us in their melodies, rhythms and textures, that carry us with them.

                                                                                                                                            The Unfolding is all of these things. An extraordinary eight-part collaboration between composer Hannah Peel (Mercury Prize and Emmy nominee) and Paraorchestra, it was made over three years in precious morsels of time around a global pandemic. These circumstances – unexpected when the collaboration began – add weight to its explorations in sound about who we are, where we came from, and who we could all be. The Unfolding also explores Paraorchestra’s progressive idea of what an orchestra should be, mixing analogue, digital and assistive instruments with a unique ensemble of disabled and non-disabled musicians to make magic happen, and accessible to all.


                                                                                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                            Barry says: Surpassing the meditative shimmer and oscillating beauty of last years' 'Fir Wave' was never going to be easy, but this is the most strikingly beautiful piece of work I think she's ever done. Choral and otherworldly, but imbued with a levity and optimistic glimmer that Peel does so well. Mindblowing.

                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                                                                            A1. The Universe Before Matter [10:58]
                                                                                                                                            A2. Wild Animal [3:55]
                                                                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                                                                            B1. Passage [5:22]
                                                                                                                                            B2. The Unfolding [5:47]
                                                                                                                                            Side C
                                                                                                                                            C1. If After Weeks Of Early Sun [4:16]
                                                                                                                                            C2. Perhaps It Made Us Happy For A Minute [4:17]
                                                                                                                                            C3. We Are Part Mineral [6:06]
                                                                                                                                            Side D
                                                                                                                                            D1. Part Cloud [10:31]
                                                                                                                                            D2. The Unfolding Credits Instrumental Version [02:19] *vinyl Exclusive Not On CD*
                                                                                                                                            D3. The Unfolding Credits [02:19]

                                                                                                                                            Keeley Forsyth

                                                                                                                                            Limbs

                                                                                                                                              Keeley Forsyth’s 2020 debut album found an elemental voice ringing out from beneath the rubble. Understated but devastating, Debris' success led to a transformation as the songs were brought to the stage. An innate performer, Forsyth found herself channelling something she hadn’t yet fully come to understand, and it was here that the voice found on Debris began to probe outwards and discover a physical form. It’s a form that fully takes shape on her second album Limbs.

                                                                                                                                              Anyone who saw Forsyth perform in the brief window after Debris was released and before shows ground to a halt can testify to the show’s power. In pin-drop silence, enraptured audiences watched as Forsyth inhabited a new body. No stranger to portraying characters in her career as an actor, this was something different.

                                                                                                                                              Limbs is a record of reckoning with that change. After the initial purge of Debris, those feelings of trauma and fear remain but there’s also a life to live. “Save me from the chair where sadness lies,” she sings on opener ‘Fires’, wrestling the need to be creative within the routine of daily life. Where Debris was composed and recorded in close proximity to instrumentalist and arranger Matthew Bourne, Limbs deploys a more expansive palette. With Forsyth at the centre, collaborator Ross Downes acts as another limb, remotely producing the pulses and drones which feed back into the voice. Bourne this time is enlisted to “Bring some of the soil of Debris” into Limbs. The result is clearer and more spacious. If Debris sounded like it was buried under the earth - Forsyth’s voice repressed and breathless - Limbs brings some of that live presence. 


                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                              1. A1. Fires
                                                                                                                                              2. A2. Bring Me Water
                                                                                                                                              3. A3. Limbs
                                                                                                                                              4. A4. Land Animal
                                                                                                                                              5. B1. Blindfolded
                                                                                                                                              6. B2. Wash
                                                                                                                                              7. B3. Silence
                                                                                                                                              8. B4. I Stand Alone

                                                                                                                                              King Hannah

                                                                                                                                              I'm Not Sorry, I Was Just Being Me

                                                                                                                                                Liverpool duo Hannah Merrick and Craig Whittle, aka King Hannah release their debut LP I’m Not Sorry, I Was Just Being Me via City Slang.

                                                                                                                                                The first single from the album, All Being Fine, sets the stall perfectly for the rest of I’m Not Sorry, I Was Just Being Me, drenched as it is in cinematic, often immersive and offbeam soundscapes, punctuated by lyrics that are darkly romantic and thrillingly sardonic in equal measures. Written and then recorded with additional musicians Ted White, Jake Lipiec, and Olly Gorman in just eight months, the LP is a bold, memorable, even startling document of a dream shared, an ambition fulfilled and a vision realized. I’m Not Sorry, I Was Just Being Me is a spectacular debut from the duo and a clear indication this is the beginning of a long, fruitful journey for King Hannah.

                                                                                                                                                King Hannah make music that lives somewhere between the gorgeously meditative pop of Yo La Tengo and the beautiful drama of Sharon Van Etten.

                                                                                                                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                Laura says: This is just fantastic. Brooding desert blues from the dust-bowl of erm, Liverpool! Hannah Merrick's vocals, which fall somewhere between Mazzy Star's Hope Sandoval and Sharon Van Etten, float over a beautifully narcotic backdrop of intricate guitar melodies and gentle drum rhythms that slowly build to a crescendo on album closer "It's Me And You, Kid".

                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                A1. A Well-Made Woman
                                                                                                                                                A2. So Much Water So Close To Drone
                                                                                                                                                A3. All Being Fine
                                                                                                                                                A4. Big Big Baby
                                                                                                                                                A5. Ants Crawling On An Apple Stork
                                                                                                                                                A6. The Moods That I Get In
                                                                                                                                                B1. Foolius Caesar
                                                                                                                                                B2. Death Of The House Phone
                                                                                                                                                B3. Go-Kart Kid (HELL NO!)
                                                                                                                                                B4. I’m Not Sorry, I Was Just Being Me
                                                                                                                                                B5. Berenson
                                                                                                                                                B6. It’s Me And You, Kid

                                                                                                                                                A Place To Bury Strangers

                                                                                                                                                See Through You

                                                                                                                                                  A Place to Bury Strangers defund post-punk orthodoxy with the most audacious and varied songwriting of their career on their sixth album, See Through You' on Oliver Ackermann's label, Dedstrange. Following up on 2021"s highly acclaimed Hologram EP, the rebooted lineup' vocalist/guitarist Oliver Ackermann plus drummer/vocalist Sandra Fedowitz and bassist John Fedowitz (both of Ceremony East Coast)' delivers an overclocked set of futuristic electronic punk music encoded with punishing industrial rhythms, swirling voltage-starved guitars and unclassifiable auditory annihilation. Across thirteen tracks recorded in seclusion throughout the nihilistic absurdity of the coronavirus pandemic, See Through You is proof-positive that the group hailed as 'The Loudest Band in New York' is still finding new ways to push the needle deeper in the red.

                                                                                                                                                  BIO:
                                                                                                                                                  Fans all over the globe know: Oliver Ackermann always brings surprises. The singer and guitarist of New York City’s A Place To Bury Strangers has been delighting and astonishing his audience for close to two decades, combining post-punk, noise-rock, shoegaze, psychedelia, and avant-garde music in startling and unexpected ways. As the founder of Death By Audio, creator of signal-scrambling stomp boxes and visionary instrument effects, he’s exported that excitement and invention to other artists who plug into his gear and blow minds. In concert, A Place To Bury Strangers is nothing short of astounding — a shamanistic experience that bathes listeners in glorious sound, crazed left turns, transcendent vibrations, real-time experiments, brilliant breakthroughs.

                                                                                                                                                  And just as many of his peers in the New York City underground seem to be slowing down and settling in, Ackermann’s creativity is accelerating. He’s launched a label of his own: Dedstrange, dedicated to advancing the work of sonic renegades worldwide. He’s also refreshed the group’s lineup, adding bassist John Fedowitz and drummer Sandra Fedowitz, and the band has never sounded more current, or more courageous, or more accessibly melodic. The Hologram EP is the first release from the new lineup — and the first on Dedstrange — and it’s no overstatement to say that the reaction has been ecstatic. Ghettoblaster wrote that the band’s racket outpaced everything to emerge from New York City in the past decade. Brooklyn Vegan praised Ackermann’s “terrific, emotive” singing, and lauded the group’s recent commitment to foregrounding its melodies and lyrics. Pitchfork, Flood, AllMusic: they’ve all lined up to call Hologram an example of the best work of a tireless band with a deep discography and an unquenchable drive to create challenging, unprecedented music. A Place To Bury Strangers release their highly anticipated sixth album See Through You February 4, 2022 on their newly formed label Dedstrange.


                                                                                                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                  Barry says: A thoroughly blazing, visceral return to their incendiary best for 'See Through You' from A Place To Bury Strangers. While 2018's 'Pinned' was undeniably brilliant, it had a little less of the industrial atmospherics and clashing, grinding groove that this has. A wonderful, soaringly heavy behemoth.

                                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                                                                  1. Nice Of You To Be There For Me
                                                                                                                                                  2. I’m Hurt
                                                                                                                                                  3. Let’s See Each Other
                                                                                                                                                  4. So Low
                                                                                                                                                  5. Dragged In A Hole
                                                                                                                                                  6. Ringing Bells
                                                                                                                                                  7. I Disappear (When You’re Near)
                                                                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                                                                  8. Anyone But You
                                                                                                                                                  9. My Head Is Bleeding
                                                                                                                                                  10. Broken
                                                                                                                                                  11, Hold On Tight
                                                                                                                                                  12. I Don’t Know How You Do It
                                                                                                                                                  13. Love Reaches Out

                                                                                                                                                  Los Campesinos!

                                                                                                                                                  Hello Sadness - 10th Anniversary Edition

                                                                                                                                                    Hello Sadness is Los Campesinos! shooting for a pop album. Not pop-punk, not indie-pop – punchy, pristine pop. But as with everything in life, nothing ever quite goes to plan.

                                                                                                                                                    The UK’s First and Only Emo Band™ (see also: Your Ex-Girlfriend’s Favourite Band©), started off with the best of intentions. Opener ‘By Your Hand’ is a horny, hilarious tragi-comedy, rife with masturbation, stallion-like thighs and a sick covered rental tuxedo. ‘Songs About Your Girlfriend’ is sarcastic and punchy, with lines cribbed from T.I songs and a drunken brag of a chorus.

                                                                                                                                                    But by the title track, the bravado evaporates and from there on out, Hello Sadness might be the most gut wrenching, emotionally devastating album the group has ever produced - quite a feat considering the rest of their catalogue.

                                                                                                                                                    Recorded back in 2011, just outside of Figueres, Catalonia, and their first with new members Kim, Jason and Rob, it's an album of break ups, body parts and football. An album that finds bandleader Gareth cracking while the band around him play more frantically, more powerfully than they ever had before. It’s an album that, ten years ago, cemented Los Camp!’s position as més que un band.

                                                                                                                                                    Hello Sadness is the album that made you a 4lyfer. The rawness and brutal honesty that spilled out felt like an invitation to join the band itself, or at least some broken hearts support group. In current times, the effort and drive the band put into furthering progressive politics, inclusivity and DIY spirit has always been mirrored by their fans, the feeling of collective effort uniting waifs and strays worldwide to create thriving scenes, collectives, venues, bands and zines.

                                                                                                                                                    But LC! aren't about to give up the good fight, and that the reissuing of Hello Sadness comes on the band’s own Heart Swells label is a reaffirmation of their commitment to being DIY till they Die. And maybe it is their pop album – John Goodmanson’s production is crisp and cutting, Jason Campesinos!’s drumming adding a controlled intensity to Tom Campesinos!’ luscious compositions – but nothing for Los Campesinos! will ever be that straightforward.

                                                                                                                                                    Since its original release the band's membership has changed, beloved venues have closed, we are all far older and more jaded. But Hello Sadness still hurts. ‘The Black Bird, The Dark Slope’ swirls desperately, ‘Every Defeat a Divorce (Three Lions)’ serves as a reminder of the dust gathering thicker in the England men's football team’s trophy cabinet, and we, Los Campesinos!’s ‘sad eyed children’, still hang on their every word.

                                                                                                                                                    Los Campesinos! are: Gareth (vocals, he/him), Kim (vocals and keys, she/her), Tom (lead guitar, he/him), Neil (guitar, he/him), Matt (bass, he/him), Rob (keys and percussion, he/him) and Jason (drums, he/him)


                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                    Side A:
                                                                                                                                                    1. By Your Hand - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    2. Songs About Your Girlfriend - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    3. Hello Sadness - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    4. Life Is A Long Time - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    5. Every Defeat A Divorce (Three Lions) - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    Side B:
                                                                                                                                                    6. Hate For The Island - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    7. The Black Bird, The Dark Slope - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    8. To Tundra - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    9. Baby I Got The Death Rattle - Remastered
                                                                                                                                                    10. Light Leaves, Dark Sees Pt. II - Remastered

                                                                                                                                                    Samana

                                                                                                                                                    All One Breath

                                                                                                                                                      Having spent two years rebuilding a Georgian farmhouse in the wild Welsh countryside, Rebecca Rose Harris and Franklin Mockett filled their car with a refined selection of instruments and a tape machine and headed to France for a three-week residency in early 2020. However, the world had different ideas and before the end of the first week they were given a simple choice: head home immediately or stay and ride out the incoming lockdown which would force the closure of all borders indefinitely.

                                                                                                                                                      They decided to stay and keep working, a decision which would lead to a new record - the duo’s second full-length album following 2019’s ‘Ascension’ LP, which was richly championed by Elbow’s Guy Garvey. 'All One Breath’, continues Samana’s enthralling musical journey, weaving between various musical styles and influences, from progressive folk to an experimental, transcendental take on soul, blues, and rock.

                                                                                                                                                      Bound by the limitations of those select few instruments and tape machine they had brought with them, Samana used their work to mirror the environment where it was brought to life. “We were guided by the pulse and narrative of each song as it came into fruition,” they say of the songwriting experience they undertook, “be that as a subconscious improvisation, or as a deep reflection and rumination on a dream. ‘All One Breath’ feels to be more of an archipelago than that of a single world or landscape.”

                                                                                                                                                      Though many of the songs on ‘All One Breath’ were improvisations - led both by specific moments and the days and nights that Rebecca and Franklin spent wandering the surrounding hills and forests - there is still plenty of structure here. ‘The Beach’ blends meditative guitar parts with a far more focused vocal, one which repeats the question ‘Should I turn back?’ as the darkness of the composition winds around it.

                                                                                                                                                      “‘The Beach’ is a song that encompasses expansion. It is an interpretation of empty space; a walk upon a shoreline that stretches in between our waking consciousness and the liminal space of dreams.”

                                                                                                                                                      In another world, Samana made a quick getaway back to Wales at the start of 2020 and concocted something entirely different. Thankfully, we have ‘All One Breath’ an emotional, mysterious, and mesmerising snapshot of a time and place that was, initially, uniquely informed by its own limitations but found its release, its spark and energy in the great depths of intrigue and imagination. And aren’t we the lucky ones?


                                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                                                                                      A1 Melancholy Heat
                                                                                                                                                      A2 Live For The Road
                                                                                                                                                      A3 The Glory Of Love
                                                                                                                                                      A4 The Spirit Moving
                                                                                                                                                      A5 The Beach
                                                                                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                                                                                      B1 Patience
                                                                                                                                                      B2 All One Breath
                                                                                                                                                      B3 Passing Me By
                                                                                                                                                      B4 Leaving
                                                                                                                                                      B5 Begin Again

                                                                                                                                                      Dinked Edition - Flexi Disc Bonus Track:
                                                                                                                                                      1. Ymlaen

                                                                                                                                                      Caroline

                                                                                                                                                      Caroline

                                                                                                                                                        UK eight-piece caroline’s eponymous debut album often cascades with force like an avalanche, squalling and rumbling on the edge of all-out collapse. At other points they slip back into impossibly fragile moments of quiet – a simple bassline or a rattle of snare the only sound amid a dark sea of silence. caroline know exactly the right balance between restraint and release. These songs are expansive and emotive pieces, their rich palette drawing on a mixture of choral singing, Midwestern emo and O’Malley and Llewellyn’s roots in Appalachian folk.

                                                                                                                                                        “Sometimes things sound much better when there’s empty space,” says Llewellyn. “Sometimes you might populate [a song] with too many things and forget that an element on its own is enough.” Elsewhere on the record the band have employed a collage-like technique, combining snippets of lo-fi recordings from a myriad of different locations – a barn in France, the members’ bedrooms and living rooms, the atmospheric swimming pool in which they also filmed sublime live sessions for ‘Dark blue’ and ‘Skydiving onto the library roof’ – with more traditional group sessions at the Total Refreshment Centre and their studio in Peckham.

                                                                                                                                                        The growth that began as a scrappy guitar band above a pub many years ago is still continuing. caroline’s astounding debut album is merely the first step. 


                                                                                                                                                        STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                        Barry says: What a fascinating sound caroline have managed to coax out here. It's a heady mix of post-rock, folk and avant rock pulled together with a keen ear for melodies and tempered with airy group vocals, a-la ASMZ. A dynamic and ever-shifting landscape of melody and texture.

                                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                                                                                        Dark Blue
                                                                                                                                                        Good Morning (red)
                                                                                                                                                        Desperately
                                                                                                                                                        IWR
                                                                                                                                                        Messen #7
                                                                                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                                                                                        Engine (eavesdropping)
                                                                                                                                                        Hurtle
                                                                                                                                                        Skydiving Onto The Library Roof
                                                                                                                                                        Zilch
                                                                                                                                                        Natural Death

                                                                                                                                                        Dinked Edition 7” Tracklisting:
                                                                                                                                                        Side A - Good Morning (red) Demo
                                                                                                                                                        Side B - Dirty Triple (3) #2

                                                                                                                                                        Kreidler

                                                                                                                                                        Spells And Daubs

                                                                                                                                                          In a year of the moon, Kreidler have produced the album Spells And Daubs. In a year of the moon – and in a year with 13 moons. Such years are known for not being the most comfortable.

                                                                                                                                                          In September 2020 the band met for exploratory sessions and initial recordings in Düsseldorf, in the familiar settings of the Kabawil Theater. That already has a certain tradition. The impetus this time was a solitary gig in the conspicuously spacious surroundings of the (former) Philipshalle. In a year that threw everyone back on themselves. Over the winter Kreidler worked remotely, sifting through the material, arranging the pieces, adding textures and contours. They met again in the spring of 2021 for further recordings at the Uhrwerk Orange studio in Hilden, near Düsseldorf. That, too, has a certain tradition.

                                                                                                                                                          From fifteen pieces they filtered out ten, and thus held an album in their hands. Then – and this is new – they took it to London, to Peter Walsh, so that he could mix the tracks.

                                                                                                                                                          Daubs are in no doubt here. This is a tenfold of colourful-blotches-thrown-onto-canvas. Then a stepping back, contemplating, remixing paint, layering, overlaying, scraping free again elsewhere. And these spells are not devastating curses, rather they are enchanting incantations, a calling forth a spring without having to ban winter in a sombre masks. Spells And Daubs is a melodious interplay. Not that Kreidler neglect the rhythmic; their characteristic drive runs through all the pieces on Spells And Daubs. Perhaps it's like this: The beat is musicalised, the melody rhythmitised.

                                                                                                                                                          Spells And Daubs is like a collection of short stories. Its ten pieces explore the same space drawn together by an overlaying arc. All of them have the length of a single, and each one has the potential of a single in the way the arrangements are laid out – so enticing is the melodic line and the beat. This succinctness was perhaps last heard on the 2000 eponymous Kreidler album. The drums are powerful with a light swing. The bass alternates beyond its functionality and its indicator just of the low frequency, swoops up and takes over the melodic lead. Perhaps most beautiful in the irresistible pop gems Arena, Unframed Drawings, and Revery. Aptly Alex Paulick moved to the fretless Bass – conjuring the spirit of Mick Karn.

                                                                                                                                                          For all of their Krautrock attributions, Kreidler never tire of reminding us that their musical development stemmed form a love of British pop music. So you might say the co-op with Peter Walsh is a match made in heaven. His illustrious mixing and production skills have lifted works from Shalamar or Lynx to Heaven 17 to Scott Walker, Pulp or FKA Twigs into other spheres. Kreidler had previously collaborated with him in 2013 for two tracks (Snowblind, Escaped, BB169). On Spells And Daubs, Walsh's methods and magic are especially audible in the spatial production, with his hallmark blend of depth and punch. Spells And Daubs is wrapped up in an enigmatic black-and-white drawing by prolific artist and filmmaker Heinz Emigholz from his Basis of Make-Up series. Their ongoing collaboration feels like a constant now. The mutual interference of Heinz Emigholz's and Kreidler's universes started about ten years ago, when he expanded the album Den with seven videos.

                                                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                          Side A
                                                                                                                                                          A1 Tantrum
                                                                                                                                                          A2 Toys I Never Sell
                                                                                                                                                          A3 Dirty Laundry
                                                                                                                                                          A4 Revery
                                                                                                                                                          A5 Unframed Drawings
                                                                                                                                                          Side B
                                                                                                                                                          B1 Freundchen
                                                                                                                                                          B2 Arise Above
                                                                                                                                                          B3 Music Follows Suit
                                                                                                                                                          B4 Arena
                                                                                                                                                          B5 Greetings From Dave

                                                                                                                                                          Dinked Edition Bonus Disc:
                                                                                                                                                          Side C
                                                                                                                                                          C1 Howling At The Third Moon
                                                                                                                                                          C2 Moon
                                                                                                                                                          Side D
                                                                                                                                                          D1 Howling

                                                                                                                                                          The Reds, Pinks And Purples

                                                                                                                                                          Summer At Land's End

                                                                                                                                                            Summer at Land’s End is not an interlude or tangent for The Reds, Pinks & Purples but rather a perfect fourth movement following the albums Anxiety Art, You Might Be Happy Someday, and Uncommon Weather. As with these self-recorded records (the primary work of songwriter Glenn Donaldson), the songs on Summer at Land’s End were crafted slowly and then drawn together to make a unified statement. But here, and more than before, Summer at Land’s End combines Donaldson’s rueful pop sensibility with a parallel musical universe, one composed of pictures, dreams, and feelings without words. Even if the underlying theme of this collection is one of conflict or unhappiness, the vision of the music presents an escape to a new world, always fading in and out of sight.

                                                                                                                                                            For listeners who may not be familiar with Donaldson’s corner of San Francisco––the Richmond district––or the current wave of hazy, melodic DIY pop groups performing in the city, Summer at Land’s End pulls in images and scenes that feel like a collision of the mundane and the sublime of this present landscape. But settings such as these are the backdrop for personal narratives, expressed as a struggle with love, with companionship and the conflicts of home. With this record, The Reds, Pinks & Purples give less focus to the vanities of a subculture and more to the challenge of connecting with someone, to the ordinary goals of being human and finding harmony with others.

                                                                                                                                                            This deliberate saturation in drama and ambiance, along with some of Donaldson’s best songwriting to date, is what gives Summer at Land’s End its special class in the project’s discography. Of the album’s cinematic mood, Donaldson refers to films like Summer of ‘42 and the influence of the classic 4AD catalogue of the 1990s. This style informs much of Donaldson’s prior and current ventures of course (The Ivytree, Vacant Gardens, and a dozen projects in between) but now The Reds, Pinks & Purples have taken the mantle, embracing this instinct for instrumental or dreamier modes of pop songwriting. It’s a pleasure to experience Summer at Land’s End, as this record finds a thrilling balance between songs and sounds, instruments and voices, and the ironic twin poles of art and life.

                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                            1. Don’t Come Home Too Soon (03:12)
                                                                                                                                                            2. Let’s Pretend We’re Not In Love (03:06)
                                                                                                                                                            3. New Light (02:53)
                                                                                                                                                            4. My Soul Unburdened (02:21)
                                                                                                                                                            5. Summer At Land’s End (07:02)
                                                                                                                                                            6. Pour The Light In (04:10)
                                                                                                                                                            7. All Night We Move (02:42)
                                                                                                                                                            8. Tell Me What’s Real (03:05)
                                                                                                                                                            9. Upside Down In An Empty Room (03:15)
                                                                                                                                                            10. Dahlias And Rain (02:37)
                                                                                                                                                            11. I’d Rather Not Go Your Way (01:56)

                                                                                                                                                            DINKED EDITION:
                                                                                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                                                                                            Don’t Come Home Too Soon (03:12)
                                                                                                                                                            Let’s Pretend We’re Not In Love (03:06)
                                                                                                                                                            New Light (02:53)
                                                                                                                                                            My Soul Unburdened (02:21)
                                                                                                                                                            Summer At Land’s End (07:02)
                                                                                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                                                                                            Pour The Light In (04:10)
                                                                                                                                                            All Night We Move (02:42)
                                                                                                                                                            Tell Me What’s Real (03:05)
                                                                                                                                                            Upside Down In An Empty Room (03:15)
                                                                                                                                                            Dahlias And Rain (02:37)
                                                                                                                                                            I’d Rather Not Go Your Way (01:56)
                                                                                                                                                            Side C (DINKED EXCLUSIVE)
                                                                                                                                                            Never Said I Was Sorry Then (02:34)
                                                                                                                                                            Hummingbirds (03:19)
                                                                                                                                                            Holiday Cheer (02:56)
                                                                                                                                                            Randy, If You Were Here (02:34)
                                                                                                                                                            Public Fountains (02:37)
                                                                                                                                                            Side D (DINKED EXCLUSIVE)
                                                                                                                                                            Outer Avenues (02:37)
                                                                                                                                                            Sea Wall (02:43)
                                                                                                                                                            Mountain Lake Park (05:10)
                                                                                                                                                            Conservatory Of Flowers (03:19)
                                                                                                                                                            Like A Ghost Warmed Over (02:48)
                                                                                                                                                            Midday Sun (04:05)

                                                                                                                                                            Spoon

                                                                                                                                                            Lucifer On The Sofa

                                                                                                                                                              Spoon’s tenth album, Lucifer on the Sofa, is the band’s purest rock ’n roll record to date. Texas-made, it is the first set of songs that the quintet has put to tape in its hometown of Austin in more than a decade. Written and recorded over the last two years – both in and out of lockdown – these songs mark a shift toward something louder, wilder, and more full-colour.

                                                                                                                                                              From the detuned guitars anchoring “The Hardest Cut,” to the urgency of “Wild," to the band’s blown-out cover of the Smog classic “Held,” Lucifer on the Sofa bottles the physical thrill of a band tearing up a packed room. It’s an album of intensity and intimacy, where the music’s harshest edges feel as vivid as the directions quietly murmured into the mic on the first-take. According to frontman Britt Daniel, “It’s the sound of classic rock as written by a guy who never did get Eric Clapton.”


                                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                              Side A
                                                                                                                                                              Held
                                                                                                                                                              The Hardest Cut
                                                                                                                                                              The Devil & Mister Jones
                                                                                                                                                              Wild
                                                                                                                                                              My Babe
                                                                                                                                                              Side B
                                                                                                                                                              Feels Alright
                                                                                                                                                              On The Radio
                                                                                                                                                              Astral Jacket
                                                                                                                                                              Satellite
                                                                                                                                                              Lucifer On The Sofa

                                                                                                                                                              Eve Adams

                                                                                                                                                              Metal Bird

                                                                                                                                                                Eve Adams offers solace within life's shadows. Un-numbing senses with anthems of surrender and tender-hearted tales that tingle with Californian folk-noir, her album Metal Bird takes flight with the turbulence and romance of Hollywood’s golden age, and meditates on the mysteries of love, death, insecurity and loneliness.

                                                                                                                                                                Like a match struck in a cobwebbed attic, Adams voice is a fiery detective, unafraid to explore the unseen; the liminal spaces between mourning and rapture, between the coldness of a corpse and the heat of cremation. Imagery of flight and the denial of gravity floats slyly through the ten songs on Metal Bird by the California-born musician and hints at the experience of being caught in purgatory, like a passenger on a plane ride from Hell to Heaven.

                                                                                                                                                                Combining airy folk with haunting soundscapes the album takes listeners on an auditory voyage from sonorous lullabies, to dreamy ambience, skeletal jazz, 1930s torch songs and 1940s film noir. Metal Bird has a distinct, genuine tone, with orchestral arrangements, ambient hallucinations and high fidelity vocals that are unafraid to be heard loud and clear.

                                                                                                                                                                For those who are hopelessly enamoured with a by-gone time, there is solace in these songs and sounds. Flickering back and forth between dread and hope, the unrelenting march towards a spiritual transformation and the realization that each of us are driven by our own dreams and as much as we want to hold it in our hands, often it is intangible. The sublime remains elusive, existing somewhere in the heart, and it sounds like Eve Adams knows this best.

                                                                                                                                                                Metal Bird gets a release on Basin Rock, the Todmorden based record label who gave lift off to Julie Byrne, Aoife Nessa Frances, Nadia Reid and Johanna Samuels. 

                                                                                                                                                                "Metal Bird feels blissfully unmoored from any sense of time and space, its astral Americana hymns hovering somewhere between the dirt and the stars, between a bygone golden age and our tense present, between raw intimacy and dreamlike splendour." Pitchfork.

                                                                                                                                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                Barry says: What an absolutely enthralling selection this is, landing somewhere between gothic country music, 40's lounge and wistful folk, deftly flowing between influences without batting an eyelid. Wonderfully written, mournful pop songs that defy all expectation.

                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                Side A
                                                                                                                                                                1. Blues Look The Same
                                                                                                                                                                2. You're Not Wrong
                                                                                                                                                                3. Butterflies
                                                                                                                                                                4. A Walk In The Park
                                                                                                                                                                5. Metal Bird
                                                                                                                                                                Side B
                                                                                                                                                                6. The Dying Light
                                                                                                                                                                7. Woman On Your Mind
                                                                                                                                                                8. La Ronde
                                                                                                                                                                9. Prisoner
                                                                                                                                                                10. My Only Dream

                                                                                                                                                                Bodega

                                                                                                                                                                Broken Equipment

                                                                                                                                                                  The follow-up to the band's acclaimed debut album, Endless Scroll (2018), and 2019's Shiny New Model EP, Broken Equipment was inspired by a book club. In the early months of 2020, the Brooklyn art-punk incendiaries gathered together with close friends to study the works of a wide range of philosophers. Passionate debates lasting long into the night became a regular occurrence, motivating the band to become as ideologically unified as the weighty tomes they were reading. Broken Equipment is Bodega’s attempt to interrogate the external factors that make them who they are, propelling existential quandaries with tongue-in-cheek humour, highly personal lyrics, and irresistible grooves.

                                                                                                                                                                  Since Bodega’s formation in 2016, Ben and Nikki (who previously played together in the band Bodega Bay) have experienced a rare meteoric rise. The duo double as filmmakers, earning acclaim for their 2020 erotic drama PVT Chat starring Peter Vack, Julia Fox, and other recognizable faces from the Safdie Brothers’ cinematic universe. When the pandemic forced them to hit pause, they used the opportunity to regroup with drummer/performance artist Tai Lee, bassist/book club leader Adam See, and lead guitarist Dan Ryan. Broken Equipment was produced by Ben himself with Bobby Lewis, Bodega’s NYC live sound mixer. The record was mixed by Bryce Goggin, whom the band sought out for his work with Pavement, and Adam Sachs (WIVES).

                                                                                                                                                                  The album’s 12 songs are set in present day New York City, packing in references to contemporary issues of algorithmic targeting, media gentrification, and the band itself. On 'NYC (disambiguation)', they break down how the Big Apple was “founded by a corporation” and history remains alive in the present. The poetic 'Pillar on the Bridge of You' is the first love song Ben ever wrote for Nikki, while 'All Past Lovers' gazes back to the “southern belle” and “chat room suitor” who still live inside him today.

                                                                                                                                                                  To accompany the propulsive pace of 'Statuette on the Console' and its lyrics about switching perspectives, Nikki recorded alternate versions in eight different languages. “I used God in that song as this arch overlord character, but it could also be a real estate developer,” she explains. “It’s about anyone who puts their reality on your back and forces you to carry it around.” In that song, Nikki also wryly states that although she doesn’t have faith in this particular “God,” she is still “living life with (my) platitudes.” On 'Territorial Call of the Female', Nikki playfully quips that “when the man is around that’s when I’m putting you down,” highlighting how in the past she unknowingly reinforced patriarchal values by turning against other women to attract men. It’s moments like these where Bodega most exemplifies their self-professed motto that “the best critique is self critique.”

                                                                                                                                                                  As the band’s art director, Nikki commissioned the sculpture featured on the cover of Broken Equipment as a companion to the cover of their debut, Endless Scroll. “They’re in the same world,” she explains. “The Endless Scroll sculpture was kind of shaped like a computer but also a gavel that a judge would have. That album was about how we do not yet know in the information age what technology is doing to our brains. It was almost on the precipice of a judgement. Now, with the pointing finger machine on the cover of Broken Equipment, I wanted to convey the sense in which social media and Web 2.0 turn people who would otherwise be allies against each other.”


                                                                                                                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                  Barry says: There has been a huge surge in this sort of clashing post-punk of late but I remember Bodega's 2018 outing 'Endless Scroll' being one of the ones that really stuck with me, for the same reason that this is superb. Bodega craft endlessly enjoyable angular post-punk with a melodic sensibility and compositional flare you rarely see, and 'Broken Equipment' is the epitome of this. Brilliant.

                                                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                  1. Thrown
                                                                                                                                                                  2. Doers
                                                                                                                                                                  3. Territorial Call Of The Female
                                                                                                                                                                  4. NYC (Disambiguation)
                                                                                                                                                                  5. Statuette On The Console
                                                                                                                                                                  6. C.I.R.P.
                                                                                                                                                                  7. Pillar On The Bridge Of You
                                                                                                                                                                  8. How Can I Help Ya?
                                                                                                                                                                  9. No Blade Of Grass
                                                                                                                                                                  10. All Past Lovers
                                                                                                                                                                  11. Seneca The Stoic
                                                                                                                                                                  12. After Jane

                                                                                                                                                                  Boy Harsher

                                                                                                                                                                  The Runner (OST)

                                                                                                                                                                    Boy Harsher’s latest release, ‘The Runner (Original Soundtrack)’, is an exorcism.

                                                                                                                                                                    Augustus Muller and Jae Matthews’ fifth release entitled ‘The Runner (Original Soundtrack)’ is not a traditional album. Rather, it is the soundtrack to a short film, also entitled ‘The Runner’. The film, written, produced, and directed by the duo, is a searching horror film, attached to a meta-style “documentary” about Boy Harsher’s recording process. The album includes several distinct components: cinematic arrangements, vocal features, and of course classic Boy Harsher dark pop.

                                                                                                                                                                    Last year, in the midst of the obvious chaos (the global pandemic), but additionally with Jae’s MS diagnosis, Augustus started working on moody, cinematic sketches. It was uncertain what these pieces would become, other than catharsis. In Jae’s period of convalescence, she kept thinking about this sinister character: a woman running through the woods. Together, they developed this idea further into a film. They were unable to tour, a drastic (and isolating) shift in their career, and making ‘club music’ did not feel right. But there was so much they needed to get out. The next Boy Harsher release would be a reconciliation of this time. The album processes feelings of universal anxiety and the confrontation of at home illness. A necessary expulsion during a time of unrest.

                                                                                                                                                                    The album opens with “Tower”. The only track on ‘The Runner (Original Soundtrack)’ that Boy Harsher has previously played live, but never recorded. The song is an incantation, with its pulsing synth and Jae’s begging vocals. A spell about desire and impending destruction. Jae asks 'But are you honest? Do you trust? You trust in me?' Questions answered by her desperate yells. It starts both the film and the soundtrack with a heavy presence.

                                                                                                                                                                    Two songs on ‘The Runner (Original Soundtrack)’ feature vocalists other than Jae Matthews. He allows a distinct sound for both vocalists and really leans into the possibility of divergent genres. “Machina”, is a HI-NRG homage, performed by Mariana Saldaña of Boan, and “Autonomy” a new wave tribute, performed by Cooper B. Handy of Lucy. Augustus Muller fully embraces the soundtrack ethos, by creating fictional ‘bands’ to generate additional content.

                                                                                                                                                                    ‘The Runner (Original Soundtrack)’ is exactly what’s in the name: a soundtrack. At first the shape of the release was nebulous - yet once realized the album is dynamic. It serves as the story of the running figure and her musical accompaniment. Those expecting a traditional release will be surprised, but not disappointed.


                                                                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                    Mine says: Cold wave darlings Boy Harsher return with a new record as well as a horror film written, produced, and directed by the US duo. The accompanying soundtrack is everything you could want from a Boy Harsher album. Dark and mysterious, yet catchy and danceable, it is up there with some of their best work.

                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                    A1. Tower
                                                                                                                                                                    A2. Give Me A Reason
                                                                                                                                                                    A3. Autonomy (Feat. Lucy - Cooper B. Handy)
                                                                                                                                                                    A4. The Ride Home
                                                                                                                                                                    B1. Escape
                                                                                                                                                                    B2. Machina (Feat. Ms. BOAN - Mariana Saldaña)
                                                                                                                                                                    B3. Untitled (Piano)
                                                                                                                                                                    B4. I Understand

                                                                                                                                                                    “The letter X marks the spot, crosses over, literally with a cross. It’s the former, the ex-. The ex-lover known simply as “an ex”. Ex- is the latin prefix meaning “out”. Exterior, an exit. Extraordinary. Excellent. It’s exciting. Generation X. X-files. X is the unknown. X is Extreme“.

                                                                                                                                                                    Extreme is Molly Nilsson’s tenth studio album. Recorded in 2019 and throughout the 2020 global pandemic at home in Berlin, Extreme is a departure for Nilsson, an explosion of angry love. It’s an album of anthems for the jilted generation, soaked with joy and offering solace, bristling with distorted, Metal guitars and planet-sized choruses that bring light to the dark centre of the galaxy. It’s an album of the times, by the times and for the people. It’s a record about power. About how to fight it, how to take it and how to share it.

                                                                                                                                                                    Absolute Power explodes with massive guitars, double kick beats and the instantly iconic line “It’s me versus the black hole at the centre of the galaxy.” Nilsson’s performance itself portrays absolute power in its confidence but the song is a call-to-arms, an entreaty to grasp the here and now, to take the power back. It’s Nilsson pacing the ring and we’re instantly in her corner. Earth Girls takes familiar Molly Nilsson themes - female empowerment and subverting the patriarchy - but casually throws in one of the choruses of her career. “Women have no place in this world” she sings, but it’s the world that isn’t good enough. Stadium-sized but still warmly hazy, Earth Girls has its fists in the air, glorifying in harmony, almost ecstatic in its feeling good. Nilsson’s Springsteen-level conviction and righteousness bleeds through the speaker cones, the cognitive dissonance between the song’s cadences and angry lyrics redolent of Bruce in his prime. Female empowerment isn’t always an angry energy on Extreme, however. On Fearless Like A Child, Nilsson’s anthem to the female body and women’s sovereignty of it, she croons over a mid-80s blue-eyed Soul groove. It sets a nocturnal scene as the narrator surveys her past and her surroundings. Before we’re fully submerged in a dreamlike, Steve McQueen-era Prefab Sprout poem to learning from your mistakes the song erupts into one of those lines only Molly Nilsson can get away with: “I love my womb, come inside I feel so alive” she fervently sings. Against the backdrop of ever-encroaching, conservative rulings on women’s reproductive rights in places like Texas, it’s simultaneously angry and full of love.

                                                                                                                                                                    Every song on Extreme is a gleaming gem in a pouch of jewels. On Kids Today, Nilsson is the voice of wisdom, archly commenting on the eternal struggle between youth and authority. Wisdom infuses Sweet Smell Of Success with a transcendent love that forgives the narrator’s shortcomings and celebrates the moment, it’s a letter to the author from the author that asks “what is success” and concludes that this is it, this song, this moment. It’s a rare moment of simple reflection that is generous in its insight to Nilsson’s inner life. “Success” is a tool of power and we don’t need it… We need power tools and there are moments on Extreme where it feels like Nilsson is showing us how to find them. It's an open conversation through out Extreme. She’s a warm, comforting presence through out the album and specially on these songs of encouragement, songs perhaps sang to a younger Molly Nilsson or, really, to whomever needs to hear them. “They’ll praise your efforts, they’ll call you slurs a rebel, a master, an amateur / Merely with your own existence, you already offer your resistance.” On Avoid Heaven she’s even more direct, pleading with us to avoid concepts of purity and to embrace the glorious, ebullient, emotional mess we’re often in as a method of upending the power structures who need things to be perfect.

                                                                                                                                                                    They Will Pay brings back the big, distorted power chords in the form of a agit-punk, pop slammer. Of course, when Molly Nilsson does punk pop we get the catchiest chorus this side of The Bangles or The Nerves. It’s rendered in an off the cuff, throwaway manner that is just perfect in its roughness. However, it’s on Pompeii that Nilsson delivers the album’s epic, emotional heartbreaker. Like 1995 on Nilsson’s album Zenith, or Days Of Dust on Twenty Twenty, the lyrics of Pompeii are heavy with a transcendent sadness, an aching poetry that cuts to the truth of the heart like the best Leonard Cohen lines, though here delivered with an uplifting, life-affirming love. It contains the most personal moments of Extreme, a song lit by the dying embers of romance. Yet it’s here where the alchemy at the base of all Nilsson’s best work is found. Turning small nuggets of personal truth into big, generous universal moments that invite everyone to cry, to love and to fight the power. In an album of jewels, it might be the shining star.

                                                                                                                                                                    Molly Nilsson’s biggest, boldest and most vital album to date, Extreme is about power. Against the love of power and for the power of love.


                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                    1. Absolute Power
                                                                                                                                                                    2. Earth Girls
                                                                                                                                                                    3. Fearless Like A Child
                                                                                                                                                                    4. Kids Today
                                                                                                                                                                    5. Intermezzo
                                                                                                                                                                    6. Sweet Smell Of Success
                                                                                                                                                                    7. Obnoxiously Talented
                                                                                                                                                                    8. Avoid Heaven
                                                                                                                                                                    9. Take Me To Your Leader
                                                                                                                                                                    10. They Will Pay
                                                                                                                                                                    11. Pompeii

                                                                                                                                                                    ‘Fleuves de l'Ame’ is the debut album of Paris-based Tunisan artist Houeida Hedfi, produced with Olof Dreijer of The Knife. Originally a percussionist, ‘Fleuves de l' me’, is an elegant marriage of traditional folk music and contemporary sound design drawing references from Hedfi's drumming expertise and the textures of Tunisian music alongside a startlingly broad array of global genres.

                                                                                                                                                                    Hedfi came to music late, getting her first drum kit aged 27 when she was already established as an academic in the field of economics / mathematics. Alongside teaching she toured playing a contemporary spin on stambeli, a genre of Afro-Arab sufi trance music heavy on rhythms. “I loved it,” she recalls, “but I had this need for melody. There was no room for that within our group, so I realised I had to start my own project.” She enlisted the help of Tunisian violin player Radhi Chaouali and Palestinian bouzouk player Jalal Nader and began rehearshals. Over nine years of travel between Tunisia, France, and Dreijer’s Berlin studio, Hedfi refined each composition with a perfectionist’s ear and found a home in melody.

                                                                                                                                                                    During composition it was essential to Hedfi that the songs contained the quarter tones characteristic of Tunisian/Arabic music. “I wanted it to sound like me. In my mind, if you delete these quarter tones, it’s like deleting all the verbs from a sentence.” While her musical influences are not limited to Tunisia, she still views her album as a modern take on Tunisian music. “It’s not just Tunisian,” she adds, “it’s also made by a woman. That makes a difference. My music doesn’t take up so much space, it has nuance. If I had to put a nationality to my music, I would also put a gender to it.”

                                                                                                                                                                    Each track is named for a different river, referencing both the safety found in the sound of water and the sinuous drama of each composition, which often starts peacefully, before evolving to encompass drama and tension, conflict and resolution. 


                                                                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                    Barry says: A beautiful marriage of swooning modern classical and traditional Tunisian folk music, with moments of elegiac pensiveness and more exuberant, shimmering beauty. A wonderfully written and beautifully crafted masterpiece.

                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                    Side A
                                                                                                                                                                    Souffles Du Nil
                                                                                                                                                                    Namami Gange (Obéissance Au Gange)
                                                                                                                                                                    Side B
                                                                                                                                                                    Envol Du Mékong
                                                                                                                                                                    Appel Du Danube
                                                                                                                                                                    Side C
                                                                                                                                                                    Baisers Amers De L’Euphrate
                                                                                                                                                                    Les Cloches De Yamuna
                                                                                                                                                                    Echos De Medjerda
                                                                                                                                                                    Side D
                                                                                                                                                                    Cheminement Du Tigre



                                                                                                                                                                    Los Bitchos

                                                                                                                                                                    Let The Festivities Begin!

                                                                                                                                                                      Panthers prowling through a desert. Cowgirls swaggering into a saloon and kicking up dust. Riding shotgun with a Tarantino heroine. Having the fiesta of your lives under a giant piñata with all your friends. Los Bitchos’ hallucinatory surf-exotica is as evocative as it is playful: the London-based pan-continental group could well be your new favourite party band with their instrumental voyages that are the soundtrack to setting alight to a row of flaming sambucas and losing yourself to the night. They’ve got a bun-tight knack for a groove – and they’ve got the best fringes in rock’n’roll too.

                                                                                                                                                                      Serra Petale (guitar), Agustina Ruiz (keytar), Josefine Jonsson (bass) and Nic Crawshaw (drums) hail from different parts of the world but met via all-night house parties, or through friends, in London. Their unique sound binds them together, though, taking in a retrofuturistic blend of Peruvian chicha, Argentine cumbia, Turkish psych and surf guitars. They are London’s answer to Khruangbin, if Khruangbin spent all weekend getting slammed on cheap tequila in a Dalston dive bar.


                                                                                                                                                                      STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                      Liam says: Even though it was one of the earlier releases of the year, we've still been slamming this one here at Piccadilly. For fans of Khruangbin and psychedelic groovy goodness, Los Bitchos' "Let The Festivities Begin!" is the soundtrack to the coolest party in the world and probably the most fun you'll have with a record this year!

                                                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                      Side A:
                                                                                                                                                                      1. The Link Is About To Die
                                                                                                                                                                      2. I Enjoy It
                                                                                                                                                                      3. Pista (Fresh Start)
                                                                                                                                                                      4. FFS
                                                                                                                                                                      5. Tropico

                                                                                                                                                                      Side B:
                                                                                                                                                                      6. Las Panteras
                                                                                                                                                                      7. Good To Go!
                                                                                                                                                                      8. Change Of Heart
                                                                                                                                                                      9. Tripping At A Party
                                                                                                                                                                      10. Try The Circle!
                                                                                                                                                                      11. Lindsay Goes To Mykonos

                                                                                                                                                                      Flexi Bonus Disc:
                                                                                                                                                                      A1: Los Chrismos
                                                                                                                                                                      B1: Tipp Tapp

                                                                                                                                                                      Silverbacks

                                                                                                                                                                      Archive Material

                                                                                                                                                                        In years from now, anyone seeking to make sense of what life was like during a global pandemic should extend their research beyond the newspaper clippings and dive into the art produced during the period. Archive Material - the aptly-titled second album by Dublin-based art-rock quintet Silverbacks - will make for a particularly illuminating listen on the subject. Capturing the absurd mixture of monotony and creeping disquiet experienced by many of us this past 18 months, it’s simultaneously sobering and wickedly droll.

                                                                                                                                                                        Spend more than five minutes in the company of brothers/band founders Daniel and Kilian O’Kelly and you’ll quickly realise this playfulness is hardwired. Reminiscing about their upbringing in Brussels, they gently rib one another about their early creative abilities. “When Kilian started writing music, around the age of 14/15, it was like, oh shit, that's better than what I've been doing - maybe I should latch on to him a bit,” older brother and lead singer Daniel chuckles. “And that’s still the case,” guitarist/vocalist Kilian bats back, grinning.

                                                                                                                                                                        They laugh too recalling how - prior to the existence of streaming services - they used their dad’s extensive record collection as a lending library, much to his disapproval. “The rule in the house was [you could borrow] just one CD at a time,” Daniel explains. “It was like borrowing a book: you’d check it out for a night and then the next day he'd be immediately chasing up on the CD asking, ‘Where is it?’ And then he’d fine us.”

                                                                                                                                                                        It was via these limited loans that the pair first discovered the work of Frank Zappa, the Beatles and Miles Davis, as well as some of the records and bands that would go on to inspire their output in Silverbacks specifically. “Television’s Marquee Moon was a big one,” Daniel recalls. “Pavement’s Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain was another. And then Sonic Youth generally.”

                                                                                                                                                                        The siblings’ songwriting partnership only began in earnest when Daniel moved to Kildare to study music in 2008, with the pair swapping ideas over email under the band name Mighty Good Leaders. Two years later, Kilian joined Daniel at college in Maynooth and - after changing their name to Silverbacks - they expanded the line-up, recruiting course mates Peadar Kearney on guitar and Emma Hanlon on bass, alongside a revolving cast of drummers. This arrangement continued until 2014, when Peadar left Ireland to live in France and the band reverted back to being a bedroom project. The current incarnation of Silverbacks officially began two years later, upon Peadar’s return to Dublin, with drummer Gary Wickham completing the line-up.

                                                                                                                                                                        The five-piece’s first release together - ‘Just For A Better View’ - arrived in 2017, instantly picking up praise from an array of blogs. 2018-single, the BBC 6 Music playlisted ‘Dunkirk’ extended their audience even further, showcasing Daniel’s sardonic lyrical style as he played a man having a mid-life crisis on the site of the former battleground. As a result of the single’s success, they gigged solidly for the next two years, touring Ireland extensively, and playing shows across the UK and Europe with Girl Band, in-between working on their full-length debut, Fad.

                                                                                                                                                                        Recorded with Girl Band-bassist Daniel Fox - who the band had initially admired for his production work with Paddy Hanna - its release was initially scheduled for November 2019, before being put back to March 2020 for logistical reasons. When the music industry was derailed by the pandemic, its release was postponed indefinitely. Frustrated, the band took control and opted to put it out in July 2020, against the advice of their label. Daniel explains, “We knew it was a risk, but just for our own sanity, we just needed to get it out there and move on to the next thing.

                                                                                                                                                                        It was a leap of faith that paid off, with the Irish Times declaring the 13-track collection “seriously exciting”, DIY Magazine calling it “an excellent example of how a debut should be done” and it getting nominated for the RTE Choice Music Prize Irish Album of the Year. Not that the band hung around to revel in the acclaim: they were already hard at work on the follow-up.

                                                                                                                                                                        Archive Material only cements Silverbacks’ status as one of Ireland’s most fascinating bands. Recorded at Dublin’s Sonic Studios in November 2020, with Daniel Fox undertaking production duties once more, it finds the band leaning into their early influences, delivering idiosyncratic indie-rock packed with intricate, Tom Verlaine-esque “guitarmony”. Other reference points for the record included Neil Young, Weyes Blood and - on ‘Wear My Medals’ in particular - Bradford Cox and Cate Le Bon’s collaborative record Myths 004.

                                                                                                                                                                        Where Fad found Silverbacks focused on recapturing the live experience rather than reveling in studio experimentation, Archive Material skillfully traverses the line between the two. As a unit, they replicate that irrepressible live energy via complex arrangements incorporating everything from wistful Rhodes (‘Carshade’) to congas and Gang Of Four-style bass (‘Different Kind Of Holiday’).

                                                                                                                                                                        Thematically, the record is every bit as rich, displaying an anthropological approach as exemplified by the album’s artwork. The initial premise for ‘They Were Never Our People’ came from a YouTube comment, portraying the decline of a town that has lost its footfall as the result of a bypass. Meanwhile, ‘Central Tones’ is an empathetic character study of someone seemingly content to trade off former glories, but secretly deeply unhappy.

                                                                                                                                                                        On several songs, the pandemic functions as a particularly effective prism through which to examine ideas of community. ‘A Job Worth Something’ finds Daniel reflecting on his real-life experiences working in insurance while his sister treated patients on a COVID ward, and the feelings of futility and guilt he felt at the time. ‘Different Kind Of Holiday’ was inspired by the ways in which previously uncommunicative neighbours bonded with each other during periods of enforced confinement. Throughout, his observations arrived drenched in the same surreal strain of gallow’s humour that many of us were forced to adopt to lighten the toughest moments of the lockdown.

                                                                                                                                                                        Daniel explains, “I can't remember who it was, but I saw a musician who said that they'd be keeping away from writing anything about the pandemic, because who wants to hear about that? But I’d much rather hear about an event via someone who actually lived through it, rather than someone writing about it retrospectively.”

                                                                                                                                                                        Keenly observed and vividly rendered, Archive Material is an eye-witness account of human resilience as much as it is a compelling indie-rock record. Future historians take note.


                                                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                        Archive Material
                                                                                                                                                                        A Job Worth Something
                                                                                                                                                                        Wear My Medals
                                                                                                                                                                        They Were Never Our People
                                                                                                                                                                        Rolodex City
                                                                                                                                                                        Different Kind Of Holiday
                                                                                                                                                                        Carshade
                                                                                                                                                                        Central Tones
                                                                                                                                                                        Recycle Culture
                                                                                                                                                                        Econymo
                                                                                                                                                                        Nothing To Write Home About
                                                                                                                                                                        I’m Wild

                                                                                                                                                                        Lieve is the long-awaited second LP by British electronic music producer Holy Other. Emerging from an extended stay at Bidston Observatory on the Wirral, Lieve was recorded throughout 2020 in the North West of England.

                                                                                                                                                                        Using the acoustics of the observatory — the cavernous basement and the geometrically-perfect wooden domes — Holy Other recorded and resampled material that would become the bedrock of Lieve.

                                                                                                                                                                        A marker in the sand as his first output since 2012’s critically acclaimed Held, these recordings — including the voice of NYX’s Sian O’Gorman, violin from Simmy Singh and saxophone from Daniel Thorne — were cut, manipulated and pieced together to form Lieve.

                                                                                                                                                                        “How do you break up with a place?”

                                                                                                                                                                        Have you ever tried to leave your problems behind? No matter how hard you try to reshape yourself, your past remains. This is an album about L(i)eaving, coming to terms with the past, and trying to live in the present.

                                                                                                                                                                        Much like his past work, Holy Other leaves the listener to draw their own semantic conclusions from the record. The lyrics are ambiguous — ghostly voices, whispers and stutters interwoven with his signature sound palette.

                                                                                                                                                                        Still, the expressive mood from prior releases remains intact, even if these intimate textures and deft rhythms pick up more mature questions about false starts and failed escapes.

                                                                                                                                                                        The title track single Lieve breaks almost a decade of silence, finding the language to articulate painful feelings, exhaling, and moving forward.

                                                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                        1. Dirt Under Your Nails
                                                                                                                                                                        2. Lieve
                                                                                                                                                                        3. Absolutes
                                                                                                                                                                        4. Heartrendering
                                                                                                                                                                        5. Up Heave
                                                                                                                                                                        6. Whatever You Are You're Not Mine
                                                                                                                                                                        7. Groundless
                                                                                                                                                                        8. Refuse
                                                                                                                                                                        9. Shudder
                                                                                                                                                                        10. Bough Down

                                                                                                                                                                        Peakes

                                                                                                                                                                        Peripheral Figures

                                                                                                                                                                          The sound of PEAKES has always been steeped in isolation, crafting hymnal electro-pop that floats, weightless and suspended, over the world they move through. Using the lens of nostalgia as a kind of refuge, their synth-led dreamscapes defy any sense of time and place: their sound is both current, yet transportive like a memory.

                                                                                                                                                                          Since their formation in 2017, vocalist Molly Puckering, synth-player and producer Max Shirley and drummer Pete Redshaw, have been solidifying what it means to be PEAKES. With a smattering of EPs and singles laying out their statement of intent, each one a run-up growing in momentum, their trajectory was clear: get into the studio and bring the music to the stage. This was the plan for the Leeds-based trio in 2020 – until the world stopped. No one could have predicted that touring and recording, an artist’s lifeblood, would grind to a global halt, and PEAKES could never have predicted that in a year defined by impossibilities, they would make their debut album, Peripheral Figures.

                                                                                                                                                                          “I think last year, when you had everything taken away from you, it made it easier to try something new,” says Molly. Having released their four-track EP ‘Pre-Invented World’ on the cusp of the COVID-19 pandemic, amidst the world’s disorder, their music fell into a void: the appetite for new music had understandably dried up, and there was nothing PEAKES could do to change that. So rather than dwell on it, they took a step back and returned to the drawing board and went back to basics, learning to fall in love with music again through the purest sense of creation.

                                                                                                                                                                          Yet despite the logistical hurdles they had to overcome during the pandemic, where ten minutes might as well have been ten thousand miles away, Peripheral Figures is their most personal, hands-on project yet – and it’s entirely their own. Molly recorded her vocals in the wardrobe of her bedroom, while Pete’s drums were sent in a file-sharing back and forth over email: a departure from the sessions they’d had with producers in fully-fledged studios. “This is the closest that we wanted everything to sound like,” Max says. “Whereas before, it was someone else’s vision too, this time, we’ve had the final say, and it feels great.”

                                                                                                                                                                          The suspended time allowed them to experiment without a timeframe, having the opportunity to dedicate hours to perfecting the details, rather than minutes. What started as a means of escapism developed into an album which not only serves as the definitive realisation of PEAKES’ potential, but acts as a capsule for the universal feeling of isolation channelled through boundless imagination.

                                                                                                                                                                          Another freedom that the pandemic afforded them was to step away from a singles-driven mindset, embracing slow-burning songs that didn’t necessarily meet the tick-box requirements of upbeat with the ability to instantly connect with a listener. “Clouds”, one of the most interesting tracks on Peripheral Figures, wouldn’t exist if they weren’t writing in an album state of mind. Sonically stripped back, Molly’s entrancing, almost spoken vocals, carry it. “We’re quite nostalgic in the sounds we use and the world we want to create,” says Max. Inspired by the hazy dreamscapes of shoegaze, PEAKES choose to bring those elements forward, leaning towards synth rather than guitar. “Infinite Divide” merges the retrospective, synth-driven energy of the 80s and brings it to the brink of modernity. Experimenting with distortion, PEAKES welcomed the grittiness that their DIY production created over the far more polished, studio-level sheen they’d been used to. While the two tracks stand in contrast to one another, they are also the band’s favourites: “We’d never written two songs with that much energy from the start,” says Molly.

                                                                                                                                                                          “Day and Age” was written with nightclubs in mind, with its propulsive, entirely electric new-wave beat dreaming of crowded spaces. Their lyrics, penned between Max and Molly, usually came from a place of observation: “We didn’t realise how much we were influenced by being out in the world until we weren’t in it anymore,” Molly says. Using limitless imagination as a crutch, they started to explore scenarios in their head, embedded themselves into different stories. “Nameless Machines” was a concept song, built upon Max’s lyric: “Nameless machines / Statistical dreams”, envisioning someone working the same nine-to-five office job, being consumed by it and trapped within it. “I loved getting into the mindset of that and writing from it,” Max says.

                                                                                                                                                                          PEAKES’ music is a catalogue of reference points, from essentials such as Gary Numan, Depeche Mode and New Order to the ambient techno of Haruomi Hosono and the wonky German electro-beats of Grauzone. While Max is indebted to 80s new age, Molly looks to the female-led electronic renaissance of the 00s, with Portishead, Goldfrapp and Moloko being enormously influential for her own approach as the band’s frontwoman.

                                                                                                                                                                          The band met at university while they were studying at the Leeds Conservatoire in 2017 after cramming into an eight-bed house together, discovering that they shared a similar vision. Molly, as well as being PEAKES’ vocalist and lyricist, is also the architect behind the “silent stuff”, having styled all their outfits with an eye for dreamy, whimsical aesthetics that they bring into their artwork. Max, whose multi-hyphenate role extends to lyrics, production and instrumentation, brings a meticulous eye for detail that means that every track is finished to a sky-high standard, and Pete is PEAKES’ grounding force and peacemaker – not to mention their roadman (he’s the only one with a driver’s license).

                                                                                                                                                                          With the release of Peripheral Figures, PEAKES feel one step closer to their vision than ever: their debut album was hard-won, and yet stands brightly as an example that out of trauma, there is a possibility to build something beautiful. 

                                                                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                          Side A:
                                                                                                                                                                          Internal Forecast I
                                                                                                                                                                          An Infinite Divide
                                                                                                                                                                          Control
                                                                                                                                                                          Day And Age
                                                                                                                                                                          Lately
                                                                                                                                                                          Side B:
                                                                                                                                                                          Internal Forecast II
                                                                                                                                                                          Clouds
                                                                                                                                                                          Nameless Machines
                                                                                                                                                                          Fascination
                                                                                                                                                                          Circular State

                                                                                                                                                                          Fine Place

                                                                                                                                                                          This New Heaven

                                                                                                                                                                            Fine Place is a new duo comprising Frankie Rose (Vivian Girls, Crystal Stilts, Dum Dum Girls) and Matthew Hord (Running, Pop. 1280, Brandy). Based in Brooklyn, NYC together they’ve crafted a crystalline full length of nocturnal, electronic pop music that charts a way out the post-global, cyberpunk dystopian environment it was crafted in. Their debut album This New Heaven drenches minimalist song structures in post-industrial washes of sixstring delay and gothic post-punk synths. Presiding over it is the most evocative, emotive vocal performance Frankie Rose has committed to tape to date.

                                                                                                                                                                            Following Hord’s relocation from Chicago, the pair wanted to explore new avenues apart from their respective bands or solo projects. “The sound we were going for was an attempt to capture the dystopian feel of New York during a period of desertion by the wealthy. It was produced in a time-frame saturated in both uncertainty and serenity, and the soundscapes we created felt fitting and almost organic as a response to our surroundings. The title also reflects this in an arguably literal, maybe even satirical way.” Sonically, Fine Place references the pioneering mid-to-late 80s pioneers of icy melodrama The Cure and Cocteau Twins, while reflecting both the individuals’; music trajectories thus far. Modular synthesis triggers rhythm boxes and fluttery arps chirp around clanging 808-patterning as Rose’s reverb-laden vocal layering envelops the remaining headroom. The result is massive; a towering, shadowy music that embraces darkness while offering Rose’s bright vocal as chinks of light in the cracks; the production filling the head space of the beholder with preternatural imagery and emotional resonances that are real but not quite defined.

                                                                                                                                                                            The title song propels forth out of the fog, scintillating with delayed guitar before the reverb-immersed vocal injects the human drama. The chorus constantly teases a big release but holds back creating a taut, dynamic tension. Cover Blind’s slow march makes full use of Rose’s layered vocal sinking and emerging from Hord’s bank of synths. Stand out It’s Your House is pure honey pouring from the speaker on a bank of of arps and near-hymnal vocal layering, a syrupy light offering in the mist. It’s an emotive highlight that only increases as the album progresses; Impressions Of Me is the Lynchian ballad that glides onward into the sunset. The album finishes on a choice re-interpretation of the 1989 track The Party Is Over by Belgian group Adult Fantasies, one of the great over-looked ballads of the era given an almost ecclesiastical makeover by Matthew Hord and Frankie Rose in 2021.

                                                                                                                                                                            Says Hord: “This record was an incredibly challenging endeavor to make, as I had just come home from a European tour with another music project and wanted to invest into and focus on this collaboration with Frankie. I essentially reimagined how to approach writing basic sequences with the synthesizers I had been rehearsing and performing with for months prior to make something more accessible and pop- like for Frankie to build upon. Frankie is an unsung hero when it comes to mixing, and she was constantly mixing down and processing elements of the tracks to create different atmospheres as we forged forward with every song.”

                                                                                                                                                                            This New Heaven is an ecstasy of sorts, a half-dream in the border between sleep and daylight.

                                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                            1. I Can’t Shake It
                                                                                                                                                                            2. This New Heaven
                                                                                                                                                                            3. Cover Blind
                                                                                                                                                                            4. Tending To Twenty
                                                                                                                                                                            5. It’s Your House
                                                                                                                                                                            6. Impressions Of Me
                                                                                                                                                                            7. Tell Me A Second Time
                                                                                                                                                                            8. The Party Is Over

                                                                                                                                                                            M(h)aol

                                                                                                                                                                            Gender Studies

                                                                                                                                                                              Gender Studies it the debut EP from Irish Post-Punk band M(h)aol via indie label TULLE which champions underrepresented voices in music. The 12” will be a Dinked Edition - a limited edition clear vinyl with 300 copies only. It’ll come with a hand signed postcard from the band, a glittery 'Ghost A Post- Punk Boy Today' sticker, and additional track.

                                                                                                                                                                              Gender Studies was recorded in just 3 days, and covers topics such as violence against women, the misogynistic music scene in Ireland and the UK, and trying to navigate life when you're not a cis straight white man.

                                                                                                                                                                              On the EP, lead vocalist Róisín says, “Gender studies weaves past & present in an exploration of how the construct of gender shapes our lives. From feeling like you're not performing your gender right to the way it shapes how we move through the physical, sexual & romantic sphere it marries urgent lyrics with a threatening yet (blank) sound.”

                                                                                                                                                                              STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                              Barry says: Gender Studies is a raukous and fiery distillation of militaristic post-punk and fuzzy grunge. Both lyrically heavy-hitting and eminently listenable, it's an addictive and fresh take on the recent surge of Irish post-punk and sits entirely on it's own merits too. A wonderful sign of what's to come.

                                                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                              SIDE A
                                                                                                                                                                              Gender Studies
                                                                                                                                                                              Desperation
                                                                                                                                                                              Kinder Bueno
                                                                                                                                                                              SIDE B
                                                                                                                                                                              Laundries
                                                                                                                                                                              No One Ever Talks To Us
                                                                                                                                                                              Óró Sé Do Bheatha Bhaile

                                                                                                                                                                              Stealing Sheep And The Radiophonic Workshop

                                                                                                                                                                              La Planète Sauvage

                                                                                                                                                                                René Laloux’s celebrated 1973 sci-fi animation ‘La Planète Sauvage (Fantastic Planet)’, is overhauled with a re-imagined soundtrack by electronic modernists Stealing Sheep and legendary sound innovators The Radiophonic Workshop. This exclusive release is part of Fire Records’ re-imagined score series, and is released on Delia Derbyshire Day 2021.

                                                                                                                                                                                It’s a real pre-Avatar conundrum that Stealing Sheep, with the help of Bob Earland, Dick Mills and Roger Limb from the Radiophonic Workshop, unravel. Creating an ethereal excursion that’s narrated by Roger Limb; like a futuristic Martin Denny, or Dr Who gone ambient techno, with a hint of Forbidden Planet 50 years on. It’s an analogue swirl set in an off-world paradise; a field recording from the future. This is a creative, generation-spanning, union brought together to score this unique cult film.

                                                                                                                                                                                A must for fans of psyche electronica and Stealing Sheep’s formidable ‘Big Wows’ album.

                                                                                                                                                                                ‘La Planète Sauvage’ is a thing of ambient beauty punctuated with electronic earworms that switches from intensely ominous to otherworldly dream like moments.

                                                                                                                                                                                “No institution has had a greater impact on the development of electronic music than the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.” The Vinyl Factory

                                                                                                                                                                                “Stealing Sheep devour a broad range of styles, incorporating everything from the dark dance-pop of Grace Jones to the experimentations of Radiophonic Workshop pioneer Delia Derbyshire and John Carpenter soundtracks.” The Guardian.


                                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                A1 Opening Credits
                                                                                                                                                                                A2 The Chase
                                                                                                                                                                                A3 Saved/Captured
                                                                                                                                                                                A4 The Bracelet
                                                                                                                                                                                A5 Council Of Draags Pt.I
                                                                                                                                                                                A6 Terr & Tiwa
                                                                                                                                                                                A7 The Knowledge Pt.I
                                                                                                                                                                                Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                B1 The Fight
                                                                                                                                                                                B2 The Knowledge Pt. II
                                                                                                                                                                                B3 The Initiation
                                                                                                                                                                                B4 Escape
                                                                                                                                                                                B5 The Big Tree
                                                                                                                                                                                B6 The Ritual
                                                                                                                                                                                B7 The Duel
                                                                                                                                                                                Side C
                                                                                                                                                                                C1 Theft/Zarek
                                                                                                                                                                                C2 The Bird
                                                                                                                                                                                C3 The Free Oms
                                                                                                                                                                                C4 The Purge
                                                                                                                                                                                C5 The Journey To Ygam
                                                                                                                                                                                Side D
                                                                                                                                                                                D1 The City Of Free Oms
                                                                                                                                                                                D2 Robot Attack
                                                                                                                                                                                D3 The Fantastic Planet
                                                                                                                                                                                D4 The Final Battle
                                                                                                                                                                                D5 Terr C6 Council Of Draags Pt.II
                                                                                                                                                                                D6 End Credits

                                                                                                                                                                                Snail Mail

                                                                                                                                                                                Valentine

                                                                                                                                                                                  On her 2018 debut album Lush, seventeen-year-old Lindsey Jordan sang “I’m in full control / I’m not lost / Even when it’s love / Even when it’s not”. Her natural ability to be many things at once resonated with a lot of people. The contradiction of confidence and vulnerability, power and delicacy, had the impact of a wrecking ball when put to tape. It was an impressive and unequivocal career-making moment for Jordan.

                                                                                                                                                                                  On Valentine, her sophomore album, Lindsey solidifies and defines this trajectory in a blaze of glory. In 10 songs, written over 2019-2020 by Jordan alone, we are taken on an adrenalizing odyssey of genuine originality in an era in which "indie" music has been reduced to gentle, homogenous pop composed mostly by ghost writers. Made with careful precision, Valentine shows an artist who has chosen to take her time. The reference points are broad and psychically stirring, while the lyrics build masterfully on the foundation set by Jordan’s first record to deliver a deeper understanding of heartbreak.

                                                                                                                                                                                  On “Ben Franklin”, the second single of the album, Jordan sings “Moved on, but nothing feels true / Sometimes I hate her just for not being you / Post rehab I’ve been feeling so small / I miss your attention, I wish I could call”. It’s here that she mourns a lost love, conceding the true nature of a fleeting romantic tie-up and ultimately, referencing a stay in a recovery facility in Arizona. This 45-day interlude followed issues stemming from a young life colliding with sudden fame and success. Since she was not allowed to bring her instruments or recording equipment, Jordan began tabulating the new album arrangements on paper solely out of memory and imagination. It was after this choice to take radical action that Valentine really took its unique shape.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Jordan took her newfound sense of clarity and calm to Durham, North Carolina, along with the bones of a new album. Here she worked with Brad Cook (Bon Iver, Waxahatchee). For all the album’s vastness and gravity, it was in this small home studio that Jordan and Cook chipped away over the winter of early 2021 at co-producing a dynamic collection of genre-melding new songs, finishing it triumphantly in the spring. They were assisted by longtime bandmates Ray Brown and Alex Bass, as well as engineer Alex Farrar, with a live string section added later at Spacebomb Studios in Richmond.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Leaning more heavily into samples and synthesizers, the album hinges on a handful of remarkably untraditional pop songs. The first few seconds of opener and title track ‘Valentine’ see whispered voice and eerie sci-fi synth erupt into a stadium-sized, endorphin-rush of a chorus that is an overwhelming statement of intent. “Ben Franklin”, “Forever (Sailing)” and “Madonna” take imaginative routes to the highest peaks of catchiness. Jordan has always sung with a depth of intensity and conviction, and the climactic pop moments on Valentine are delivered with such a tenet and a darkness and a beauty that’s noisy and guttural, taking on the singularity that usually comes from a veteran artist.

                                                                                                                                                                                  As captivating as the synth-driven songs are, it’s the more delicate moments like “Light Blue”, “c.et. al.” and “Mia” that distill the albums range and depth. “Baby blue, I’m so behind / Can’t make sense of the faces in and out of my life / Whirling above our daily routines / Both buried in problems, baby, honestly” Jordan sings on “c. et. al.” with a devastating certainty. These more ethereal, dextrously finger-picked folk songs peppered in throughout the album are nuanced in their vocal delivery and confident in their intricate arrangement. They come in like a breath of air, a moment to let the mind wander, but quickly drown the listener in their melodic alchemy and lyrical punch.

                                                                                                                                                                                  The album is rounded out radiantly by guitar-driven rock songs like “Automate”, “Glory” and “Headlock”. Reminiscent of Lush but with a marked tonal shift, Jordan again shows her prowess as a guitar player with chorus-y leads and rhythmic, wall-of-sound riffs. “Headlock” highlights this pivot with high-pitched dissonance and celestially affected lead parts – “Can’t go out I’m tethered to / Another world where we’re together / Are you lost in it too?”, she sings with grit and fatigue, building so poignantly on her sturdy foundation of out-and-out melancholy. On Valentine, we are taken 100 miles deeper into the world Jordan created with Lush, led through passageways and around dark corners, landing somewhere we never dreamed existed.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Today, in the wake of recording Valentine, Jordan is focused on trying to continue healing without slowing down. The album comes in the midst of so much growth, in the fertile soil of a harrowing bottom-out. On the heels of life-altering success, a painful breakup and 6 weeks in treatment, Jordan appears vibrant and sharp. “Mia, don’t cry / I love you forever / But I gotta grow up now / No I can’t keep holding onto you anymore” she sings on the album closer “Mia”. She sings softly but her voice cuts through like a hacksaw. The song is lamenting a lost love, saying a somber goodbye, and it closes the door on a bitter cold season for Jordan. Leaving room for a long and storied path, Valentine is somehow a jolt and a lovebuzz all at once.

                                                                                                                                                                                  - Katie Crutchfield

                                                                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                  Valentine
                                                                                                                                                                                  Ben Franklin
                                                                                                                                                                                  Headlock
                                                                                                                                                                                  Light Blue
                                                                                                                                                                                  Forever (Sailing)

                                                                                                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                  Madonna
                                                                                                                                                                                  C. Et Al.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Glory
                                                                                                                                                                                  Automate
                                                                                                                                                                                  Mia





                                                                                                                                                                                  Gnod

                                                                                                                                                                                  La Mort Du Sens

                                                                                                                                                                                    If one overarching feeling has dominated the last two years on this orbiting rock, it’s uncertainty. A sense of an old order in ruins, and nothing lined up to replace it. With societal strife, psychic warfare and sheer boredom assaulting us from all fronts in this still-fresh decade, co-ordinates have been hard to place forging a path forward. Therefore, who better to turn to as a soundtrack for this tumultuous new era than Gnod - longtime chroniclers of discord.

                                                                                                                                                                                    “The Death Of Meaning” is the translated rendering of the new Gnod album’s title, and this also reflects its creation. As Paddy Shine of Gnod notes: “I think the title sums it up well because this album was coming together at a time when confusion was king for us all - still is. I think we can all relate to that. This record is a really strange beast because of the big change that happened between mixing and recording. I think the title really does sum up the vibe of ‘What the Fuck’? Maybe we should have called it that!”

                                                                                                                                                                                    Wielding the taut, stripped-down and bludgeoning sound that had evolved on 2017’s ‘Just Say No The Psycho Right-Wing Capitalist Fascist Industrial Death Machine’ and 2018’s Chapel Perilous, Gnod initially recorded the tracks for ‘La Mort Du Sens’ with key soundman and collaborator Raikes Parade in ‘an old mill in Manchester’ around the Christmas period of 2019. “It’s the first album in a while where we kept it in-house and DIY, and we wanted it to be as ferocious as our live sets have become” says Paddy, “We banged it all down live - two drummers and a load of cabs in a room pushing each other forward”

                                                                                                                                                                                    Nonetheless, the arrival of the pandemic in early 2020 took the record on another course, adding to a turbulent and cathartic vitality that electrifies the likes of the caustic Melvins-in-hell assault of ‘Pink Champagne Blues’, the uncompromising percussive battering ram of the twelve-minute ‘Giro Day’ and the post-punk angularity of ‘The Whip And The Tongue’ with a fearsome elemental charge. “The world changed two months later so we were mixing this old world record in the new world and a lot of the vox got laid down during lockdown” reflects Paddy. “‘Pink Champagne Blues’ is a burst of total nihilist abandon and the lyrics wrote themselves in the midst of a dark wintry night of the soul”

                                                                                                                                                                                    Masters of an approach which manages to be both unmistakable and unpredictable. Gnod are now well established as prophets of the dispossessed. ‘La Mort Du Sens’ is no less than another relentlessly invigorating stop-off on their wild ride to who knows where. “It’s all about the energy” reckons Paddy. “We never really know what’s coming next. It just organically shifts around, and I think we are getting better at not analysing where it’s going and just going with the flow”

                                                                                                                                                                                    “Got No Obvious Destination, innit”.

                                                                                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                    Barry says: One of the most unstoppable forces in music is back with the incendiary genius of 'La Mort..' Unsurprisingly, utterly essential.

                                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                    01. Regimental
                                                                                                                                                                                    02. Pink Champagne Blues
                                                                                                                                                                                    03. The Whip And The Tongue
                                                                                                                                                                                    04. Town
                                                                                                                                                                                    05. Giro Day

                                                                                                                                                                                    Tasha

                                                                                                                                                                                    Tell Me What You Miss The Most

                                                                                                                                                                                      Tasha’s second album, ‘Tell Me What You Miss The Most’ mingles pockets of introspection with wide, expansive, marveling at what’s yet to come. Born and raised in Chicago, Tasha is a musician who writes songs that take loving and longing seriously. Whether dwelling in the sad thrum of an impending break up or the dizzying, heart thumping waltz of new infatuation, here is an album that traces one artist’s relationship to herself in love. Full of deep, invigorating inhales and relieved, joyful exhales, Tell Me What You Miss The Most is an exquisitely crafted breath of much needed air.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Tell Me What You Miss the Most isn’t just a catalogue of tenderness it’s also a showcase of Tasha’s growing and formidable musician-ship. “When I made Alone at Last, I had only been writing songs for two years. I hardly even knew what kind of song writer I was. But this record feels much stronger as far as a representation of my songwriter and musicianship,” says Tasha, adding “I did feel like I was piloting it in a way that I haven’t really felt before.”
                                                                                                                                                                                      “I was inspired by a distance I felt from myself,” says Tasha of the album, “the writing was kind of born from this desire to get back to an intimacy, or honesty, with myself.” Other inspirations include kissing, long drives in nature, her mother, and “winter and all that it allows (being alone inside, wrapped up in something warm, feeling things deeply.)” Her list of inspirations is a collection of types of touch; fleeting affectionate touch, the brush of a knit blanket, the bracing grip of feeling one’s own skin twinned in a palm. So too does the album veer in and out of touch with Tasha herself, tracing tenderness and loneliness, the paradox of feeling held and utterly abandoned at once.

                                                                                                                                                                                      “Tasha makes wondrous, gentle soul that advocates for self-care.” – Pitchfork.

                                                                                                                                                                                      “Genre fluid like Lianne La Havas and Jamila Woods, with decorative-but-unobtrusive guitar work and electronics, Tasha roots her songs in a conversational poetry that hits like heart pangs.” - NPR Music.

                                                                                                                                                                                      “Her gentle, resplendent songs are a salve for those who struggle to find space to be themselves.” - Chicago Reader.


                                                                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Bed Song 1
                                                                                                                                                                                      2. History
                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Perfect Wife
                                                                                                                                                                                      4. Sorry’s Not Enough
                                                                                                                                                                                      5. Love Interlude
                                                                                                                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Dream Still
                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Burton Island
                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Lake Superior
                                                                                                                                                                                      4. Year From Now
                                                                                                                                                                                      5. Bed Song 2

                                                                                                                                                                                      The Coral

                                                                                                                                                                                      The Coral - 20th Anniversary Edition

                                                                                                                                                                                        With time as fluid as The Coral’s journey through sound, the band cut short the party to celebrate this year’s universally acclaimed, Number 2 album, Coral Island and visit the strange world where it all started. The Coral, released on Monday 29 July 2002 with the singles Dreaming Of You and Goodbye, catapulted the band to mainstream success as teenagers, landing a Mercury Prize-nomination and Platinum-certification.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Now remastered from the original mixes, the album will be reissued with Run On Records in association with Modern Sky UK. Two, unreleased, never-before-heard-tracks, She’s The Girl For Me and Tumble Graves, produced by Ian Broudie, but shelved after the 2001 album sessions are included in the track-listing. The rarities appear on an all-formats bonus disc, alongside a complete singles B-sides collection and the band’s pre-album EP The Oldest Path.


                                                                                                                                                                                        STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                        Barry says: So, this is where it all started. It was clear from the starting notes of 'Dreaming Of You' that this Wirral Quintet were onto something special, so it's no surprise this 20year (really?!) reissue sounds just as fresh today as it ever did. It looks pretty special too!

                                                                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                        Spanish Main – Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        I Remember When - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Shadows Fall - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Dreaming Of You - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Simon Diamond - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Goodbye - Remastered 2021

                                                                                                                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                        Waiting For The Heartaches - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Skeleton Key - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Wildfire - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Badman - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Calendars And Clocks - Remastered 2021

                                                                                                                                                                                        Side C
                                                                                                                                                                                        The Oldest Path - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        God Knows - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Short Ballad - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Flies - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Dressed Like A Cow - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Darkness - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Sheriff John Brown - Remastered 2021

                                                                                                                                                                                        Side D
                                                                                                                                                                                        Good Fortune - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Answer Me - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Follow The Sun - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Travelling Circus - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Sweet Sue - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        Another Turn In The Lock - Remastered 2021
                                                                                                                                                                                        She’s The Girl For Me - Remastered 2021 (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
                                                                                                                                                                                        Tumble Graves - Remastered 2021 (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)

                                                                                                                                                                                        Dinked Bonus 7” Tracklist
                                                                                                                                                                                        (a) Shadow Falls
                                                                                                                                                                                        (b) Tbc

                                                                                                                                                                                        Dinked Bonus Flexi Tracklist
                                                                                                                                                                                        (a) Simian Technology

                                                                                                                                                                                        Madmess

                                                                                                                                                                                        Rebirth

                                                                                                                                                                                          Madmess are a band who know the value of doing things the hard way. Having established themselves among the outliers of Porto’s fertile, close-knit underground music scene, by 2017 it was clear that they had the potential to go much, much further. London, and its bigger, more merciless leftfield circuit beckoned. In a city full to the brim with bold and brilliant bands, the bar was significantly raised. Risks were many, but so too were opportunities.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Now, after years of slog – gruelling gigs, punishing recording sessions, not to mention a momentum-sapping pandemic – bassist Vasco Vasconcelos, drummer Luis Moura and guitarist Ricardo Sampaio, have emerged the other side with Rebirth, a debut album of rare intensity, released via Hassle Records. Their stripes earned, their teeth well and truly cut, it’s a record worthy of all that hard work, crushing riffs colliding with sweeping waves of overwhelming noise for a listen both beautiful and brutal.

                                                                                                                                                                                          As the pandemic eased in late 2020, at least temporarily, the band found time to escape to Foel Studios in the Welsh countryside, formerly used by iconic psych rock forebears Amon Düül and Hawkwind among others, to start work on their new LP. They were intent to build on the solid foundations they’d set with their EP the previous year. “We tried to do something more complete, more punchy,” says Sampaio. The sessions ended up being more intense than they were anticipating – the band record everything live, and when you’re playing the kind of complex epics that populate Rebirth there’s not much margin for error. “The shortest track is eight minutes, and they’re almost all more than 10,” says Sampaio with a wince. “The songs on this album are really complex, there were some stressful times, some harsh moments, but we managed to get through it.”


                                                                                                                                                                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                          Barry says: A hefty collection of grooving guitar riffs and fluid time signatures, at once both incendiary and brain-meltingly loose, Madmess are a band who know how to construct a song. Epic, hugely inventive and wonderfully deep.

                                                                                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                          Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                          Albatross
                                                                                                                                                                                          Mind Collapse

                                                                                                                                                                                          Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Rebirth
                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Shape Shifter
                                                                                                                                                                                          3. Stargazer

                                                                                                                                                                                          Marconi Union

                                                                                                                                                                                          Signals

                                                                                                                                                                                            Marconi Union are considered one of the leading ambient and electronic-synth acts in the world, continuously topping many lists as the most important contemporary ambient artists around today. The Manchester band often draw comparisons with Brian Eno and Biosphere, perhaps Sigur Ros, but the graceful manner with which their richly melodic compositions unfold and the emotion these evoke sets them apart from their peers.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Signals is the latest addition to Marconi Union’s highly acclaimed discography. Despite having released twelve albums in the last eighteen years they continue to experiment and push boundaries.

                                                                                                                                                                                            ‘In some respects Signals is a more traditional songwriting album than anything we’ve done before, but it draws on the same techniques we’ve used on our previous albums’

                                                                                                                                                                                            After their previous album, the largely beat-less Dead Air, one might think that Marconi Union would be primarily influenced by synth players or guitarists. However, it turns out that Signals was actually informed by the bands’ admiration of a number of different drummers and this played a significant part in helping shape its sound.

                                                                                                                                                                                            ‘We were quite inspired by various players like Jaki Liebezeit, Clive Deamer and Tony Allen and tried to imagine what our music would sound like with them playing on it.’

                                                                                                                                                                                            Signals combines synthetic textures with organic sound, and merges the familiar with the unknown, transporting the listener deep into their imagination. The one-word title is both mysterious and evocative, suggesting a multitude of images that range from high-tech electronic messaging to ghostly abandoned radio stations and even that most basic level of human expression, body language.

                                                                                                                                                                                            It Is both ironic and yet somehow so right, that a group so regularly described as ‘enigmatic’ should make an album that alludes to communication. Although, long-term fans will be relieved to note that Marconi Union decline to enlighten us on what all this means.

                                                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                            Cycles Repeat
                                                                                                                                                                                            The Halo

                                                                                                                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                            Blowback
                                                                                                                                                                                            Strata

                                                                                                                                                                                            Side C
                                                                                                                                                                                            Citizen’s Dream
                                                                                                                                                                                            Breaking Point

                                                                                                                                                                                            Side D
                                                                                                                                                                                            Looking Through The Ilex

                                                                                                                                                                                            Penelope Isles

                                                                                                                                                                                            Which Way To Happy

                                                                                                                                                                                              When you’re trying to make it through tough times, you need a little light to find your way. That light blazes brightly on the alchemical second album from Penelope Isles, an album forged amid emotional upheaval and band changes. Setting the uncertainties of twentysomething life to alt-rock and psychedelic songs brimming with life, colour and feeling, Which Way to Happy emerges as a luminous victory for Jack and Lily Wolter, the siblings whose bond holds the band tight at its core.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Produced by Jack and mixed by US alt-rock legend Dave Fridmann, the result is an intoxicating leap forward for the Brighton-based band, following the calling-card DIY smarts of their 2019 debut, Until the Tide Creeps In. Sometimes it swoons, sometimes it soars. Sometimes it says it’s OK to not be OK. And sometimes it says it’s OK to look for the way to happy, too. Pitched between fertile coastal metaphors and winged melodies, intimate confessionals and expansive cosmic pop, deep sorrows and serene soul-pop pick-you-ups, it transforms “difficult second album” clichés into a thing of glorious contrasts: a second-album surge of up-close, heartfelt intimacies and expansive, experimental vision.

                                                                                                                                                                                              These extremes come into sharp focus on ‘Terrified,’ a reflection on anxiety set to a dreamy sunburst of psychedelic jangle-pop. As Jack explains, “I love that juxtaposition. It reminds me of when you’re feeling a bit delicate or not ready to socialise but you have to go out because you need milk for tea. Then you go to the supermarket and you bump into someone you kind of know and you have to pretend that everything’s OK when, really, you’re dying inside.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              With the album’s almost prog-psych ambitions on fulsome display, ‘Rocking at the Bottom’ taps coastal motifs for a call to embrace open possibility, twinkling with hope over a deep space-rock bass line and a phased Hammond. In an album of fluent dynamism, ‘Play It Cool’ offers a swift tonal about-turn, emerging from Lily’s gloriously in-character vocal as a sweet soul-pop message to the troubled self amid rousing drums, lush glockenspiels, creamy harmonies and wonky guitars. Warm and rippling, ‘Iced Gems’ is a sorrowed lament, played out over the gentlest of fluttery keyboards and experimental electronic sounds – plus, samples of carrot crunches. Written over a couple of years, Lily’s ‘Sailing Still’ charts the life of a relationship to a slow-burn and sorrowed soundscape of dulcitones, cello, violin and more: building in increments to a climax of measured grandeur, it sustains a sense of intimacy in a framework of great scope.

                                                                                                                                                                                              The album swerves into Mercury Rev and MGMT’s cosmic slipstream with ‘Miss Moon,’ a galloping centrepiece with an irresistible call to dream: “Hey, kids – look up!” As Jack says, “We wanted it to seem like lift-off.” After its exclamatory explosion, the psychedelic dream-pop of ‘Sudoku’ offers a mellowed invitation to turn off your mind, relax, float downstream. Steering the album through further contrasts, ‘Have You Heard’ is a feelgood flurry of insistent, pulsing space-rock; ‘Pink Lemonade,’ meanwhile, is a song of sweet, sharp beauty, touching on fading childhood memories and lifted by Fiona Brice’s strings. ‘11 11’ hosts Lily’s most tender vocal yet: recorded in one take through tears, it finds Penelope Isles at their most exposed, with Brice’s strings weeping in sympathy. Finally, ‘In a Cage’ cogitates on confinement yet finds solace in field recordings of happy, high times – a judicious note of meditative reflection after a giddy ride.


                                                                                                                                                                                              More field recordings were made during a stay at a small cottage in Cornwall, where Penelope Isles began work on the album. With romantic heartache already in the air, things swiftly got worse: lockdown began, claustrophobia kicked in and emotions ran high. As Jack puts it, “We were there for about two or three months. It was a tiny cottage with four of us in and we all went a bit bonkers, and we drank far too much, and it spiralled a bit out of control. There were a lot of emotional evenings and realisations, which I think reflects in the songs.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              At different point along the way, Jack Sowton and Becky Redford left the Isles. An old friend, multi-instrumentalist Henry Nicholson, stepped in swiftly – “A godsend after a low time,” says Lily. Another friend, Hannah Feenstra, contributed drum parts; now, Joe Taylor is the band’s drummer. After Cornwall, the band redid many of the rhythm tracks, recorded a little in Brighton, then recorded more in Cornwall at their parents’ house. “It was,” says Jack, “a proper rollercoaster ride.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              The ride continued with Fridmann, whose recent credits include Isles’ favourites Mogwai’s No 1 album, As the Love Continues. As Lily puts it, the process of sending Fridmann a mix, receiving it back in the morning and then having five hours to make decisions on it resulted first in stress, then in something sublime. “I love everything he’s touched – MGMT, Mogwai, Mercury Rev. He would turn our mix into this electric, fiery thing. There were some moments that were initially hard, like on ‘Miss Moon,’ where he took out the bass when it gets to the chorus. But now it’s my favourite bit on the record. He made everything so colourful. It’s an intense-sounding record – a hot record. It was so refreshing to have that blast of energy from Dave – it’s like he framed our pictures.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              Away from the confines of the cottage, the Wolters also opened the door to a collaboration with storied composer Fiona Brice, whose credits include John Grant, Lost Horizons and Placebo. A “big bucket-list tick” for Jack and Lily, the team-up results in glorious arrangements across the album: for Lily, ‘11 11’ stood out. “I was in absolute tears when she sent back the strings for ‘11 11’. It was like, oh my goodness, she’s nailed it.”

                                                                                                                                                                                              Flushed with resourceful detail, Which Way to Happy adds extra strands to the Isles’ ever-tightening core DNA. Born in Devon and raised on the Isle of Man, the Wolters’ bonds were already strengthened by separation when Jack (six years Lily’s senior) moved away to university at 19. As Lily grew older, they rediscovered their connection and formed a band called Your Gold Teeth. When both moved to Brighton, Penelope Isles came to being, fuelled by a passion for DIY alt-rock and all who sail its seas.

                                                                                                                                                                                              On its release, Until the Tide Creeps In received rave reviews from Q, DIY, The Line of Best Fit and many others, while finding champions in Steve Lamacq and Shaun Keaveny. It also become part of a lifeline for music fans during the 2020 lockdown when the band participated in Tim Burgess’s Twitter Listening Party. Meanwhile, extensive touring saw the Isles develop into a formidable live force, with ‘Gnarbone’ emerging as a sure-fire show-stopper.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Now, the Isles have 11 more show-stoppers to add to the mix. At the album’s heart, the band’s core traits have never been stronger: the bond between the Wolters, a sensitivity towards complex feelings, a desire to celebrate life in all its facets and an ambitious reach combine to create an album that feels utterly, emphatically present on every front, rich in depth and uplift.

                                                                                                                                                                                              “There’s so much love between me and Jack, we couldn’t do it without each other,” says Lily. “And even in that chaotic, tiny bubble of a cottage that sent us all mad, we had some really funny, stupid, lovely times together. There’s a lot of emotion in the album.” Wherever Penelope Isles go from here, that guiding emotional compass couldn’t be more finely attuned.


                                                                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Terrified
                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Rocking At The Bottom
                                                                                                                                                                                              3. Play It Cool
                                                                                                                                                                                              4. Iced Gems
                                                                                                                                                                                              5. Sailing Still
                                                                                                                                                                                              6. Miss Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                              7. Sudoku
                                                                                                                                                                                              8. Have You Heard
                                                                                                                                                                                              9. Pink Lemonade
                                                                                                                                                                                              10. 11 11
                                                                                                                                                                                              11. In A Cage

                                                                                                                                                                                              Good Morning

                                                                                                                                                                                              Barnyard

                                                                                                                                                                                                Good Morning, the Melbourne duo of Stefan Blair and Liam Parsons, are rulebreakers. Not in a sexy, flamboyant way — more in a casual, resigned kind of way. Accidental and incidental rulebreakers. They are friends first, band second, business third, often in spite of function, and often at their own expense. Every time the machinations of the industry have zigged, Good Morning have zagged.

                                                                                                                                                                                                In late 2019, after the release of The Option and Basketball Breakups, with a lengthy American tour looming, Good Morning decided to go back to basics — to record as a duo again, as they had on 2014's Shawcross and 2016's Glory. Over the course of the year, they demoed any number of songs in their Collingwood studio space, meeting up every Tuesday to write and record together as they always had. In November, as their American tour wrapped up, the pair decamped in Chicago, to properly record the demos they had amassed at Wilco’s famed studio, The Loft, with Tom Schick, the studio’s in-house engineer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Despite how quietly epochal Barnyard is — a milestone in the history of Good Morning — it’s also the band’s most meditative record, thoughtful and careful in its evocations. Barnyard is world-weary, concerned with the state of things in a loose, unfocussed sort of way. In other words, like we all are — frustrated both with the way things are and with everyone’s general inability to fix any of the many issues endemic to our society.

                                                                                                                                                                                                In spite of the appropriately bleak vibe, these songs feature some of Good Morning’s catchiest and most distinctive productions. The spritely groove and easygoing harmonies of “Depends On What I Know” belie its frustration-ridden lyrics; the gripping, awesome propulsion of “Country” persists in spite of its appeal to return to a simpler, easier way of being. Thoughtful, melodic, and idiosyncratic, Barnyard is all the things one might love about Good Morning, this time around presented with the fat trimmed and the edges sharpened, loose ends tied and ducks all in a row.


                                                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Too Young To Quit
                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Depends On What I Know
                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Wahlberg
                                                                                                                                                                                                4. Yng_Shldn
                                                                                                                                                                                                5. Matthew Newton
                                                                                                                                                                                                6. Tree
                                                                                                                                                                                                7. I’ve Been Waiting
                                                                                                                                                                                                8. Burning
                                                                                                                                                                                                9. Big Wig // Small Dog
                                                                                                                                                                                                10. Never Enough
                                                                                                                                                                                                11. Green Skies
                                                                                                                                                                                                12. Country

                                                                                                                                                                                                Originally released on 25th February 2007, Malcolm Middleton’s third solo album and first for Full Time Hobby is being made available on vinyl once more for its 15th anniversary.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Only ever released on black vinyl in limited numbers around the original release, this updated version has been re-cut to optimise sound quality and pressed to natural / clear vinyl, includes liner notes from broadcasting legend Colin Murray, and is presented in a high-quality gatefold sleeve with updated art from David Shrigley.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Also available is a very special Dinked Archive edition featuring an alternative sleeve, again by David Shrigley, silver vinyl and an exclusive 7” featuring three b-sides from the original sessions (Point of Light, Pick Me Up, Black Marks) limited to 500. This 15th anniversary edition will be released 25th February 2022. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                Barry says: A superb and much needed reissue of Malcolm Middleton's third LP, 'A Brighter Beat'. We get Middleton's unmistakeable vocals atop a beautifully constructed bed of folky guitars and wry observational humour. Still sounding as fresh as it did fifteen years ago, and looking even better!

                                                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. We’re All Going To Die
                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Fight Like The Night
                                                                                                                                                                                                3. A Brighter Beat
                                                                                                                                                                                                4. Death Love Depression Love Death
                                                                                                                                                                                                5. Fuck It I Love You
                                                                                                                                                                                                6. Stay Close Sit Tight
                                                                                                                                                                                                7. Four Cigarettes
                                                                                                                                                                                                8. Somebody Loves You
                                                                                                                                                                                                9. Up Late At Night Again
                                                                                                                                                                                                10. Superhero Songswriters

                                                                                                                                                                                                Bonus Dinked Edition 7"
                                                                                                                                                                                                A1. Point Of Light
                                                                                                                                                                                                B1. Pick Me Up
                                                                                                                                                                                                B2. Black Marks

                                                                                                                                                                                                In spring 2020, having been forced to postpone any live action due to lockdown, John set to work on the follow up to their Out Here On The Fringes album. It seems that the enforced confinement allowed them time to fine tune both their songwriting and sound and produce their best LP to date. The album opens with “Return To Capital” a brooding, slow-build instrumental that’s escalating nicely until it suddenly plummets head first into “Sibensko Powerhouse”, a ferocious collision of distorted guitars, pounding drums and snarled vocals, which kind of sets the tone for the rest of the album. Being a two piece, they operate with limited tools: drums, guitar and vocals, but that doesn’t in any way limit their sound. Seeing them live reminded me of seeing No Age play live for the first time and being blown away by how much noise two people could generate. And they’re creative with that limited palate too, this isn’t all a 100mph dash for the line, it’s a very nuanced sound, there’s plenty of texture. Idles have been an obvious reference point in recent reviews, but to me their sound is rooted in the US hardcore scene of the 80s: The kind of stuff that was being released by the likes of Touch And Go and Dischord Records. (There are definitely echoes of Mackaye / Picciotto in the dual vocals at times.) That’s not to say their sound is dated, far from it, they’re one of the most vital bands around at the moment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                Laura says: Ooof! This is just awesome! Intense, dynamic guitar noise that has more in common with the likes of Jesus Lizard or any number of bands from the 80s DC scene than any more contemporary noisemakers. (The dual vocal on Šibensko Powerhouse in particular brings to mind Mackay / Picciotto.) That's not so say their sound is dated, far from it, this is the most vital noise around right now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Return To Capital
                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Šibensko Powerhouse
                                                                                                                                                                                                3. A Song For Those Who Speed In Built-Up Areas
                                                                                                                                                                                                4. Haneke'd
                                                                                                                                                                                                5. Austere Isle
                                                                                                                                                                                                6. Jargoncutter
                                                                                                                                                                                                7. Stadium Of No
                                                                                                                                                                                                8. Power Out For The Kingdom
                                                                                                                                                                                                9. Northwood Turret
                                                                                                                                                                                                10. Nonessential Hymn

                                                                                                                                                                                                Ada Lea

                                                                                                                                                                                                One Hand On The Steering Wheel The Other Sewing A Garden

                                                                                                                                                                                                  one hand on the steering wheel the other sewing a garden is the name of the second album by Canadian songwriter Alexandra Levy, publicly known by the moniker Ada Lea. On one hand, it’s a collection of walking-paced, cathartic pop/folk songs, on the other it’s a book of heart-twisting, rear-view stories of city life. Ada Lea has followed up the creative, indie-rock songcraft of her debut what we say in private with surprising arrangements and new perspectives. The album is set in Montreal and each song exists as a dot on a personal history map of the city where Levy grew up. Due on September 24th from Saddle Creek and Next Door Records in Canada, the physical record will be released alongside a map of song locations and a songbook with chords and lyrics, inspired by Levy’s love of real book standards.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Levy penned and demoed this batch of songs in an artist residency in Banff, Alberta. After sorting and editing she made her way to Los Angeles to record with producer/engineer Marshall Vore (Phoebe Bridgers) who had previously worked on 2020’s woman, here E.P. After a long walk to the studio each morning, Levy spent her session days diving into the arrangements, playfully letting everything fall in place with complete trust for her collaborators. She notes “Marshall’s expertise and experience with drumming and songwriting was the perfect blend for what the songs needed. He was able to support me in a harmonic, lyrical, and rhythmic sense.” Other contributors that left a notable fingerprint on the soundscape include drummer Tasy Hudson, guitarist Harrison Whitford (of Phoebe Bridgers band), and mixing engineer Burke Reid (Courtney Barnett). Many songs came together with a blend of studio tracks and elements from the pre-recorded demos.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  The resulting sounds range from classic, soft-rock beauty to intimate finger-picked folk passages and night-drive art-pop. And the textures are frequently surprising due to the collage of lo-fi and hi-fi sounds that tastefully decorate the album without ever clouding the heart-center of the song. Tracks like “damn” and “oranges” feel timeless with their AM gold groove and 70’s studio sheen, while songs like “my love 4 u is real '', “salt spring” and “can’t stop me from dying” sound completely modern in their use of electronics, sound effects, and pitched vocals. In their subtle, sonic variety, all of the album’s songs flow together with ease into one big, romantic dream for Levy’s silken vocals to float above.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Inspired by personal experience, daydreams, and Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels, the lyrics of one hand... center storytelling on a bigger scale. The experience and emotions of a year are communicated through Levy’s vignettes of city life. Her prose is centered in its setting of the St Denis area of Montreal as it draws up memories from local haunts like Fameux, La Rockette, and Quai des Brumes in rearview reverie. Levy creates a balance through the album’s year by splitting her songs evenly into four seasons. Opening track “damn”, as a song of winter, kicks off the narrative with the events of a cursed New Year’s Eve party. Immediately this timeline becomes jumbled into a Proustian haziness. The listener is then led through the heat-stricken, brain fog of Summer song, “can’t stop me from dying” and then into the autumnal romanticism of “oranges” before returning back to New Year’s on “partner,” which Levy describes as “a woozy late-night taxi blues reflection on moments when timing can be so right, yet so wrong…”. These collected stories as a whole chart the unavoidable growth that comes with experience. “All is forgiven in time. All is forgotten in time. And when the music stopped, I heard an answer” (from “my love 4 u is real”).

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whether to consider these songs fiction or memoir remains unknown. On one hand, Levy says “Why would I try to write a story that’s not my own? What good would that do?” but on the other hand, she is quick to note the ways that language fails to describe reality, and how difficult this makes it to tell an actually true story. The poetic misuse of the word “sewing” in the album’s title serves as a nod to the limitations words provide. What does it mean to sew the garden? And how can we appreciate its carefully knit blooms when the rearview mirror is so full of car exhaust?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Barry says: Ada Lea's new album is a wonderful mix of honest, hearfelt lyricism and psychedelic instrumentation, ranging from subtly swaying indie-pop to jagged punky drive. It's a beguiling and beautiful outing, and one that deserves to be heard.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                  01. Damn 4:21
                                                                                                                                                                                                  02. Can't Stop Me From Dying 3:09
                                                                                                                                                                                                  03. Oranges 4:54
                                                                                                                                                                                                  04. Partner 3:45
                                                                                                                                                                                                  05. Saltspring 4:23
                                                                                                                                                                                                  06. And My Newness Spoke To Your Newness And It Was A Thing Of Endless 0:56
                                                                                                                                                                                                  07. My Love 4 U Is Real 4:31
                                                                                                                                                                                                  08. Backyard 2:56
                                                                                                                                                                                                  09. Writer In Ny 3:19
                                                                                                                                                                                                  10. Violence 4:26
                                                                                                                                                                                                  11. Hurt 3:31

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Clinic

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Fantasy Island

                                                                                                                                                                                                    On their vibrant and eclectic ninth studio album Clinic, the band who wore surgical masks before it was a matter of urgency, are taking you to Fantasy Island, where you will find yourself transported to tropical climes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    In Hartley’s words: “Clinic look to a brighter future, [Fantasy Island] it’s a very positive album, it's more about what you can make happen rather than being defeatist.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Their last album, 2019’s Wheeltappers and Shunters, found the band satirising British culture and wallowing in sleazy Seventies nostalgia. Fantasy Island was recorded in an old studio on Merseyside during the summer of 2019, with good vibrations seeping into the grooves. This time they are embracing “the idea of looking at the future and the different ways it can unfold”, with their most electronic and pop record to date. “It’s a more global, international and outward looking record,” says Hartley. “Clear blue horizons. The brave new world!”

                                                                                                                                                                                                    The album was mixed last year by Claudius Mittendorfer, who has worked with Parquet Courts, Neon Indian and many pop greats.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Barry says: Clinic take their trademark post-punk psychedelic groove into new territories with their latest outing, 'Fantasy Island'. Part outsider electronica, part woozy psychedelic groove and entirely wonderful, it's a perfect listen for the times we live in.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. The Lamplighter
                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Fine Dining
                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Take A Chance
                                                                                                                                                                                                    4. Refractions (In The Rain)
                                                                                                                                                                                                    5. Dreams Can Come True
                                                                                                                                                                                                    6. Miracles
                                                                                                                                                                                                    7. On The Other Side…
                                                                                                                                                                                                    8. Fantasy Island
                                                                                                                                                                                                    9. I Can’t Stand The Rain
                                                                                                                                                                                                    10. Feelings
                                                                                                                                                                                                    11. Hocus Pocus
                                                                                                                                                                                                    12. Grand Finale

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cindy

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1:2

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cindy is a band built around the singing and guitar playing of Karina Gill. She became a musician only recently, having sat on the sidelines while ex-partners and friends made their stabs at it. Gill describes a chance encounter with an abandoned Squire Strat left in the basement by a previous tenant, “mummified in electrical tape with the remnants of a burrito on the head stock”, that led her to begin carefully strumming her way through simple chords and making her own songs. After one interesting self-released LP, still finding their footing, the band made the masterful and buzzed-about Free Advice, which went from a limited cassette on local SF label Paisley Shirt to vinyl pressings on Tough Love (UK) and Mt St Mtn (USA).

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cindy’s third LP arrives in quick succession, the quietly devastating 1:2. Jesse Jackson on bass, Simon Phillips on drums and Aaron Diko on keyboards weave the perfectly thin web behind Gill’s slow Velvety strums and murmured melodies. The rhythm section brings the crude flow, while the keys add subtle and surreal counterpoint to the withering world Gill depicts in her lyrics.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      “Just as a mood is made by everything taking part in a pattern of association, so the songs tie together seemingly disparate things by the logic of mood,” Gill tries to explain. This isn’t dream-pop sunshine bliss; half-closed black drapes hang on the window where the narrator stares into the middle distance. “Sometimes you say you’re feeling small/You plan all day for your own funeral”, she intones in Party Store.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Gill has a way of halting her phrasing that makes it feel like her thoughts are gently tumbling into the abyss. It’s this unsettling quality mixed with the hazy atmosphere that makes Cindy’s new LP 100% addicting and the perfect antidote to comfort listening.


                                                                                                                                                                                                      STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Barry says: The tenderly hushed vocals and lo-fi bedroom pop on offer here has echoes of a more melodic Moldy Peaches, but swims with a clever off-kilter writing style, lending less of a punky lo-fi haze and more of a whimsical, airy breeze to the pieces. It's really quite simple, and swimming in beauty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. The Common Era (2:04)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. My Friend (3:09)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Party Store (2:15)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      4. Song 36 (2:51)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      5. Lost Dog (3:55)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      6. To Be True (3:55)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      7. They Say What I Mean (3:43)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      8. 1:2 (3:01)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      9. Sincere Sound (3:12)
                                                                                                                                                                                                      10. Deer In Japan (4:37)

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Nolan Potter

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Music Is Dead

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Nolan Potter is putting us home recording freaks to shame. We had a year of global pandemic to lay out our grand ideas and the sum total of most artists “quar-riffs” wouldn’t push the constraints of a normal band practice (gosh, remember those?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Nolan Potter, in the meantime, has quietly painted us a beatific masterpiece that veers from the whimsical to the wigged out, deftly weaving an untamed tapestry of sound all the while archly commenting on the present musician’s predicament - and he did it alone. No drum machine clattering in the background amidst tape hiss and 4 track grime here - this is a fully realized, insanely well played, full on rock record that might even one-up his first LP for us, last year’s excellent Nightmare Forever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        The guy’s got more chops than a beauticians’ college across a wide array of instruments - no small feat, and easily overlooked when you leave the lyric sheet and credits on the dining room table. That the songs travel far, wide, up, down, backwards, and gamely spill out over the 5 minute mark with exceptionally loose interludes and diversions is just another marvel in this carnival of aural delights. It’s a gem of a record!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. One Eye Flees Aquapolis
                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Stubborn Bubble
                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Gregorian Chance

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                                        4. Holy Scroller
                                                                                                                                                                                                        5. Preeminent Minds
                                                                                                                                                                                                        6. Music Is Dead

                                                                                                                                                                                                        FLEXI:
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Overture For A Short Film

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ducks Ltd.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Modern Fiction

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Toronto’s Ducks Ltd. (formerly Ducks Unlimited), the bright jangle-pop duo of Tom McGreevy (lead vocal, guitar, bass, keyboards) and Evan Lewis (guitar, bass, drum programming), accomplish the impossible. The pair craft songs that play to very specific inspirations without drowning underneath them—immediately evidenced on their critically acclaimed EP, Get Bleak, and sharpened on Modern Fiction, their debut LP. “The Servants, The Clean, The Chills, The Bats, Television Personalities, Felt,” Evan rattles off. “Look Blue Go Purple is one I reference a lot with our production.” Echoes of ‘80s indiepop abound, but they never overwhelm. This is not a nostalgic record, after all, nor is it a derivative one. Instead, across 10 cheery-sounding songs, Ducks Ltd. explore contemporary society in decline, examining large scale human disaster through personal turmoil (hence the title, taken from a university course called Gnosticism and Nihilism in Modern Fiction, influenced by Graham Greene novels. Bookish indie fans, look no further.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Writing the album was intimate. Tom drafted the nucleus of a song on an unplugged electric guitar and brought it over to Evan’s apartment, where the pair sat in his bedroom, placing percussive beats from a drum machine under nascent melodies, passing a bass back and forth, adding organs and bridges where necessary. “It’s computer music trying extremely hard not to sound like computer music,” Tom jokes. Fearful that limited and expensive studio time would kneecap the project creatively, eroding their charming naivete, the pair re-recorded the album in a storage space owned by Evan’s boss. Ornamentation through collaboration followed: there’s Aaron Goldstein on Pedal Steel in the Go-Betweens’ “Cattle and Cane”-channeling interlude “Patience Wearing Thin,” Eliza Niemi on cello (“18 Cigarettes,” a song loosely inspired by a 1997 Oasis performance of “Don’t Go Away”), and backing harmonies from Carpark labelmates The Beths (on an ode to friendship at a distance, “How Lonely Are You?,” “Always There,” and on the sped-up Syd Barrett stylings of “Under The Rolling Moon.”) While in his native Australia due to covid-19, Evan worked closely with producer James Cecil (The Goon Sax, Architecture in Helsinki) on Modern Fiction’s finishing touches—at one point, in the mountains of the Macedon Ranges in Victoria, recorded a string quartet (featured on “Fit to Burst,” “Always There,” “Sullen Leering Hope,” “Twere Ever Thus,” “Grand Final Day.”)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          It’s danceable, depressive fun, with some relief: in “Always There” and “Sullen Leering Hope,” Modern Fiction’s faithful heart. “There’s a tendency in my writing, because of my world view, to be very bleak.” Tom explains. “A quality I don’t always see in myself and really appreciate in others is the courage to go on.” And yet, the record manages resiliency—enough for pop fans to fall in love with. 


                                                                                                                                                                                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Laura says: Ducks Ltd, the duo of Tom Mcgreevy and Evan Lewis formed in Toronto, Canada and are now based between there and Geelong, Australia. Channelling 80s UK indie pop and weaving in some antipodean charm, this is perfect sun-kissed jangle pop with a heavy dose of melancholy. An absolute delight. For fans of McCarthy, Flying Nun Records, RBCF, Horsebeach, Goon Sax....

                                                                                                                                                                                                          TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. How Lonely Are You?
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Old Times
                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. 18 Cigarettes
                                                                                                                                                                                                          4. Under The Rolling Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                          5. Fit To Burst
                                                                                                                                                                                                          6. Patience Wearing Thin
                                                                                                                                                                                                          7. Always There
                                                                                                                                                                                                          8. Sullen Leering Hope
                                                                                                                                                                                                          9. 'Twere Ever Thus
                                                                                                                                                                                                          10. Grand Final Day

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Metronomy

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The English Riviera (Instrumentals)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Joseph Mount-fronted electronic pop collective Metronomy announce details of the forthcoming special vinyl release of the instrumental versions of their career-changing 2011 album The English Riviera, which is this year celebrating its ten year anniversary. The English Riviera (Instrumentals) are available to listen to online now and will be released on vinyl in November.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Dinked vinyl edition of The English Riviera (Instrumentals) will be a cream coloured 12” vinyl with numbered sleeve, complete with transparent sticker sheets, A6 Postcard and Dinked sticker.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            A love letter to the stretch of coast a stone's throw from where Joe Mount grew up, The English Riviera marked a breakout moment in the band’s history that would lead them to global success and see them constantly developing their sound for a decade to come. 


                                                                                                                                                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Barry says: So, you know that perfect funky synth-pop powerhouse 'The English Rivera' by Metronomy?, yeah well imagine that but without vocals.. Oh, you can't? well if it's something you fancy then this, 'The English Rivera Instrumentals By Metronomy' might be exactly what you need. It's good, it's like the album but without the vocals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                            A Side:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            The English Riviera
                                                                                                                                                                                                            We Broke Free (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Everything Goes My Way (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Look (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            She Wants (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Trouble (Instrumental)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            B Side:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Bay (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Loving Arm (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Corinne (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Some Written (Instrumental)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Love Underlined (Instrumental)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The new album by electronica producer Ulrich Schnauss and the Engineers guitarist Mark Peters 'Destiny Waiving' lands in store on Hamburg's Bureau B.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hailing from Kiel in North Germany, it's now 20 years since the electronica prodigy Ulrich Schnauss released his debut album. His second, 'A Strangely Isolated Place' cemented his reputation as both a pioneer and an artist who routinely creates inspirational music that is adored by many. As a full time member of Tangerine Dream since 2014, his lifelong passion for their work inspired a creative resurgence for the band, resulting in their most successful new album for over 30 years, 2017's 'Quantum Gate'.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Liverpool born guitarist (and founder of the dream pop outfit Engineers) Mark Peters shared a similar musical path, exploring ambient textures and effect laden songwriting via a series of blissful albums for the band. In 2017 he released his first solo album, 'Innerland' which was enthusiastically received by BBC6 music and later included in Rough Trade's top ten best albums of 2018.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            'Destiny Waiving' completes a collaborative trilogy that began with 2011's 'Underrated Silence' and followed by 2013's 'Tomorrow Is Another Day' (Schnauss also became a full time member of Engi-neers at this time). Initial sessions began at Ulrich's East London home studio in early 2017 and final mixes where completed there in late 2020. Despite it's extended conception, most tracks where com-pleted during 2017, in part informed by improvisational sets in London, Dublin and St James' Church in Birmingham (as part of the Seventh Wave electronica festival).

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Despite these exercises in exploration, 'Destiny Waiving' is perhaps the most focused and concise collection of all three releases. Ranging in tone from precognitive foreboding to soaring optimism, the album delicately hones a particular atmosphere that is unmistakable in their work. While track titles such as 'The Supposed Middle Class' acutely display a concern for society at large, compositions and performances reveal a great deal more light and shade. This inherent balance is a key facet of the duo's chemistry, signposted by the titles of 'Chiaroscuro' and 'Clair-Obscur' and the shifting moods within the tracks. For every rushing, upward sweep (Hindsight is 20/20, 'Circular Time'), contemplative countering is evident in tracks such as 'Words Can Be Dismissed' and 'So Far', 'The Moment'.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            As we're all tired of hearing now, the global situation in 2021 is less than ideal, but if it's any consolation, Ulrich and Mark have fulfilled their destiny by creating a work that's both undeniably potent and endlessly immersive.


                                                                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. The Supposed Middle Class
                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Hindsight Is 20/20
                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Circular Time
                                                                                                                                                                                                            4. Chiaroscuro
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1.Words Can Be Dismissed
                                                                                                                                                                                                            2.Speak In Capitals
                                                                                                                                                                                                            3.Clair-Obscur
                                                                                                                                                                                                            4.So Far, The Moment

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Bonus Dinked EP
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Side A:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1.Hindsight Is 20/20 (Count Two Four Version)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            2.Circular Time (Measure By Measure Version)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Side B:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1.Words Can Be Dismissed (Talking Snare Version)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            2.Speak In Capitals (Uppercase Drumming Version)



                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Oscillation’s continuing journey into the centre of the mind and beyond shows absolutely no signs of slowing down. Indeed, new album "Untold Futures " is less a consolidation of all that we’ve come to love and expect from the cosmic explorers and more a leap forward into an upcoming reality. Redefining the possibilities of altered states through audio stimulation, “Untold Futures” finds The Oscillation at their most daring and breathtaking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            A multi-layered assault on the senses, this is an unexpurgated experience for the seasoned connoisseur and unspoiled novice alike. Its power is felt in the multi-layered dissonance and undying throb of “Dilated Mind”, the metaphysical possibilities that beat at the heart of metronomic pulses of “Forever Knowing” and the face-melting attack of “The Inner Void”. “Heart Of Nowhere” is a mantra for the profane, while the dissonant beauty of “Obscured” realises re-birth and resurrection.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Revelatory in its brilliance and an intersection between the individual self and the collective unconscious, this is music to fuel the inner technology of the mind. Veering between krautrock edginess, droning medicated tones and noise driven no wave fuzz, The Oscillation recalls the music of Neu! and Tangerine Dream and Loop interpreted with an eye on Pil’s dubbed out punk funk, Miles Davis’ experimentalism and Spacemen 3’s strung out blues rock.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Beginning in 2007, when DC Recordings released the debut “Out Of Phase”, The Oscillation have released many albums and EPS both self released and with labels (Fuzz Club and Hands In The Dark and Cardinal Fuzz). Recent releases include the mutant kosmiche techno of “U.E.F”, the pounding and otherworldly “Wasted Space” from 2018 and the epic exploration of the inner landscapes with “Droneweapon”. Now The Oscillation return with a new face-biting album questioning our strange relationship with reality as “Untold Futures”.


                                                                                                                                                                                                            STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Matt says: Wild, incendiary, chest-beating psych rock that shoots off the stage like a flamethrower. Roaring with wobbly feedback and howling like a banshee for its entire duration. Unmissable!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Untold Futures
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Dilated Mind
                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Forever Knowing
                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 The Inner Void
                                                                                                                                                                                                            4 Heart Of Nowhere
                                                                                                                                                                                                            5 Obscured

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ambient Version LP (DInked Edition)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Obscured (ambient)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Inner Void (ambient)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dilated Mind (ambient)
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Heart Of Nowhere (ambient)




                                                                                                                                                                                                            Pip Blom

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Welcome Break

                                                                                                                                                                                                              There are approximately a great deal and very many ‘Welcome Breaks’ scattered throughout the sprawling motorways of the UK.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Now, regardless of whether that statement’s true or not… when life’s become a series of long-stretches and welcomed breaks, it’s to no avail that sometimes all it takes to alleviate spirits is the simplest, of experiential indulgences.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Be it the buzz of an overly exhausted tour van, or the green light and smell of sausage rolls in the near Beaconsfield distance... inspiration can be found in the funniest corners of this place we call home; and it’s in the heart of day-to-day simplicities and sprawling services, that we gladly receive Amsterdam’s beamy-grinned, indie-pop powerhouse Pip Blom, back into lives.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Following an extensive touring schedule which saw the Dutch 4-piece roam over field, oceans, and Glastonbury’s John Peel stage following the release of their debut record ‘Boat’, any such cool-cat would be forgiven for wanting to kick back, and indulge in some very appreciated, time off.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              As is often the way, such timely-abandon cannot be said for Pip Blom however, who immediately began to gather up all her soaked-up inspirations taken from the road, and manifest a re-energised sense of self, and ritualistic songwriting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Cosying down in a room of her parents’ house (which she shares with her brother and fellow bandmate Tender Blom), Pip, a self-confessed “fan of deadlines”, set aside three months to write twenty songs- sixteen of which
                                                                                                                                                                                                              were to become demos for the band to structure and flesh out, once in the studio together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              It’s at this stage in our indie-fairy-tale that things start to get ever so 2020. Whilst the world was suddenly put on hold as a result of Covid-19, Pip Blom, who’d made plans to return to their favourite ‘Big Jelly Studios’ in Ramsgate, England, were suddenly faced with a very sticky, kind of dilemma. “We’d scheduled to go into the studio in September but summer started moving and there were a couple of countries not allowed to go to the UK anymore... a week before we had to go, the Netherlands was one of those countries”- notes Pip.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sentimentalities, and pre-established friendships (by way of Grammy award-winning engineer Caesar Edmunds) took president, and the decision was made to pack up their gear and a variety of board games and exercise equipment, all in preparation of a fourteen-day quarantine faced upon arrival in the UK.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              In total, three weeks were spent recording what would become the groups sophomore release; a Al Harle engineered love-affair which was self produced entirely by the band and culminated in a legally intimate, fully seated album play-back, to six, of Ramsgate’s most chorus-savvy and ‘in the-know’ residents.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Getting out of their hometown and into an environment which removed all notions of “normality” or personal space, was an atmospheric godsend in terms of motivation; an act which encouraged Pip Blom to re-adjust and buckle down as a unit again, after spending so long in mandatory isolation.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Much like the danceable-realism of Pip’s beloved Parquet Courts, the key to an album well done, is the balancing act of fine-production, and capturing that core live-essence we all miss. “We always play one live track three times and after we then build that track in the studio” says Pip, assembling together amalgamated “live-energies” in order to produce a capsule of environmental-satisfaction, that can be appreciated during any time of day, or life’s little moments.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Actively seeking out moments of creative-authenticity, be it via a slightly out-of-tune guitar or proudly-fuzzed vocals, Pip Blom take us back full circle and introduce us to their ‘Welcome Break’- an eleven-track release which resonates with about as much decisive allure as it’s ‘Boat’ precursor, but this time with a bit more contemporary chaos to boot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Where ‘Boat’ reckoned as a fresh-faced, yet gloriously fearless game changer, ‘Welcome Break’ is the self-assured older sibling who, with an additional year or two behind themselves, isn’t afraid to speak out, take lead, and instigate a liberated revolution-come-bliss-out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Lead single’s ‘Keep It Together’ and ‘You Don’t Want This’ are glistening masterclasses in feel-good chorus- the very kind of coming-of-age relatability where a soul would want to let down their hair, stick their arm out the window of their best friends car and roll with the motions in a rapture of soundtracked euphoria, and jangled adventure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Unhinging genre in our instant-access era of musical snoot, no-one does an enthused-chorus quite like Pip Blom yet much can be said for this gang being far from one-trick-ponies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anthemic drifters ‘Different Tune’ and ‘It Should Have Been Fun’ are slow building, amplified highlights. Carrying all the weight of convicted fearlessness on their shoulders, Pip Blom unhinge pre-disposed expectations of crafted alternative like graduates straight outta Kim Deal’s school of rock, whilst closing number ‘Trouble In Paradise’, sets the tone for what will only be the ultimate, set-list once gigs resume again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              With Pip Blom, no mood is untouched nor sense of renewal left behind. The trick to it all? As Pip reveals: “I just really like catchy songs and I feel like that’s something we try to do. I’d classify it as being sentimental – it’s not sugar-happy Pop.... more like ‘Titanic’ pop songs...”

                                                                                                                                                                                                              For those of us missing the buzzed adrenaline of communal music exploration, the idea of escapism in cramped and sweaty crevices can seem quite lifeless. If it's a sense of community you’re after then look no further than ‘Pip Blom Backstage’.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Streaming goodness 24/7 as a fan-centric loyalty app, ‘Pip Blom Backstage’ gives access to exclusive news, premium content, and, a chat box for the Pip Blom Backstage community; further cementing Pip Blom as undeniable pals for life as fan-clips, spotify playlists and even a cooking lesson from bassist Darek Mercks, are all made available from the VIP lounge of your own back-pocket.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              In conclusion, there're actually thirty-five ‘Welcome Break’ pit stops a weary traveller can make in a lifetime spent on the M1, and it’s associates. Whilst the road’s presently a little less travelled, Pip Blom’s ‘Welcome Break’ is adamantly nothing to do with the present state of affairs. In fact, it doesn’t have anything to do with much at all and that’s the way they like it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              ‘Welcome Break’ is but two nouns of which when placed together in context, ring confidently with prowess, intent, and a radiant true-spirit - much like Pip Blom herself. 


                                                                                                                                                                                                              STAFF COMMENTS

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Barry says: Both thoroughly melodic and swimming with that airy haze we've come to expect from this Dutch outfit, but with moments of distorted heft and crashing post-punk groove, the new one from Pip Blom is every bit the essential purchase. Ram-packed with hooks and brilliantly produced, it's definitely their most accomplished work to date.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 You Don't Want This
                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 12
                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 It Should Have Been Fun
                                                                                                                                                                                                              4 Keep It Together
                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Different Tune
                                                                                                                                                                                                              6 I Know I’m Not Easy To Like
                                                                                                                                                                                                              7 Faces
                                                                                                                                                                                                              8 I Love The City
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9 Easy
                                                                                                                                                                                                              10 Holiday
                                                                                                                                                                                                              11 Trouble In Paradise

                                                                                                                                                                                                              A lot’s happened since W.H. Lung’s debut shot to the top of our hallowed chart in 2019, not least my high definition fade (courtesy of the good people at Rusholme’s New Style Barbers*), and the Mancunian unit wear the changes well on their sophomore album. Brewed under the expansive skies of the Calder Valley and the mind expanding experience of the mighty Wet Play, Vanities marries the confidence of Incidental Music with a new found maturity, dialing back on the tension to deliver a series of optimistic electronic anthems rendered in a high gloss sheen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Driving their DeLorean from 70s Düsseldorf to noughties Cologne, motorik rhythms evolve into the sleek beats of micro-house, deftly repurposed into the firm foundations of a festival-sized sound. Gone are the angst-laden yelps of their debut as vocalist Joe explores the full versatility of his range, building from a tender coo to ecstatic outpouring on the gospel flecked “Gyd Time” or taking a brief diversion into Jimmy Sommerville register on accomplished opener “Calm Down”. There’s still a little post punk grit lurking in the glitter though, most notably in towering single “Showstopper”, an astounding new-new wave masterpiece which propels the thrust of Grauzone’s “Eisbar” into the skyscraping grandeur of Depeche Mode’s ’87 vintage.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              But Vanities is unashamedly ecstatic, and as such is expressed in the language of the hedonist, whether it be Bobby Orlando melodies, Michael Meyer sequences or the unbridled exuberance of highlife guitars, all lovingly referenced and reimagined by the group’s Tom Sharkett. Sinbad from Brookside once said “escapism is the elixir for uncertain times”, and that’s certainly the case here. W.H. Lung may be Manchester’s third best Chinese superstore, but they’re still the city’s best band.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              *Piccadilly Records does not condone or approve this product placement.


                                                                                                                                                                                                              TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Calm Down
                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Gd Tym
                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. Pearl In The Palm
                                                                                                                                                                                                              4. Ways Of Seeing
                                                                                                                                                                                                              5. ARPi
                                                                                                                                                                                                              6. Showstopper
                                                                                                                                                                                                              7. Figure With Flowers
                                                                                                                                                                                                              8. Somebody Like
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9. Kaya

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anna Phoebe

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sea Souls

                                                                                                                                                                                                                In March 2020, I was asked to produce a ten-minute package for a BBC Radio arts show. Living in Deal on the Kent coast, I went down onto the beach to sit and think about what I wanted to write about. The sea is such a source of comfort, the sound of the waves and the line of the horizon a daily form of meditation and reflection. I filmed and recorded the sea then went back to my studio. I found it was easier to express my emotions through music rather than words, and so the opening track, ’By the Sea’ was born.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mary Anne Hobbs heard the piece and played it on her BBC Radio 6 Music show. She suggested that I release it, and that’s how Sea Souls started.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                This album takes you on a journey through the soul, each piece on this album inspired by how the sea and the weather reflected my emotions that day. 2020 was such a turbulent year and each track on this album represents a different snapshot of that time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Many of the pieces were recorded in a series of single improvised takes, and some were worked on over a period of time. Like the commitment to the improvised takes on violin, viola, piano, recorder, bass and guitar which pervade the music, this album is an acceptance of flaws and imperfection, letting go of the idea of perfection.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                On June 7th the music from Sea Souls will be used in collaboration with female poets across the globe opening up York Festival of Ideas, in partnership with Dhaka Lit Fest and Jaipur Literary Festival. Anna will be joined by Klara Schumann (cello) and Richard Bundy (piano) for a streamed performance from the beautiful York Minster, interweaving her music with poetry including Salena Godden, Sadaaf Saaz, Jasmin Kaur and Melizarani T.Selva.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. By The Sea
                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Light On Waves
                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Horizons
                                                                                                                                                                                                                4. Sirens
                                                                                                                                                                                                                5. Moon
                                                                                                                                                                                                                6. Breathe
                                                                                                                                                                                                                7. Undercurrent
                                                                                                                                                                                                                8. Sea Drift I
                                                                                                                                                                                                                9. Sea Drift II
                                                                                                                                                                                                                10. Sea Drift III
                                                                                                                                                                                                                11. Sea Souls
                                                                                                                                                                                                                12. Beyond Horizons

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hamish Hawk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Heavy Elevator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hamish Hawk is an Edinburgh-based songwriter. Performing solo and as frontman of the New Outfit, Hawk's ability to surprise, enchant and bewilder has secured his status as one of the more endearing figures on the Scottish contemporary music scene.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  His songwriting offers a blend of wit, charm and sensitivity that is unique and unmistakable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hawk has provided support for King Creosote, This is the Kit, Idlewild, James Yorkston and Out Lines.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                  TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Vivian Comma
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This, Whatever It Is, Needs Improvements
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Mauritian Badminton Doubles Champion, 1973
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bakerloo, Unbecoming
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Your Ceremony

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Caterpillar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Daggers
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Heavy Elevator
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Calls To Tiree
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  New Rhododendrons



                                                                                                                                                                                                                  JW Francis

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wanderkid

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    JW Francis burst onto the scene with his critically acclaimed debut ‘We Share a Similar Joy’, with features from DIY and Line of Best Fit to being named Album of The Day on BBC 6 Music. His warm, affable melodies and comforting lyrics earned him fans on both sides of the Atlantic, and now he returns with his sophomore album Wanderkid, a concept album about a wandering anti-hero.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wanderkid hones in on JW’s dreamy soundscapes and explores themes of escapism, whilst still maintaining that sense of comfort and intimacy so beautifully demonstrated in his debut. To celebrate the release, JW is going on a 2,000 mile walking journey across the Eastern United States along the Appalachian Trail.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    With Wanderkid, JW Francis is further cementing his place as a future stalwart in the alternative New York scene.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    SIDE A
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. John, Take Me With You
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. I Love You
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Maybe
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4. Make Another Record
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    5. Only With You
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    6. Holy Mountain

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    SIDE B
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. WANDERKID
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Don't Fall Apart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Fake It Till You Make It
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4. I'm Probably A Ghost
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    5. Cars

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Low Hummer

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Modern Tricks For Living

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Low Hummer are a fast-rising six piece from Hull that write about their life in deepest darkest East Yorkshire and their place in a world of consumerism and bad news stories sold as gospel. Daniel, Aimee, Steph, Jack, John and Joe came together from the far corners of the city’s tight knit DIY community, established a regular rehearsal home in iconic DIY venue The New Adelphi Club and set about honing their righteous, danceable garage rock before announcing themselves in late 2019 and introducing the world to Low Hummer - this band of misfits from a town left behind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      “Scuzzed out indie with lashings of synths, their post-punk leaning songwriting has a surreal pop instinct running through it” – Clash.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      “Brilliant new garage rock… classic garage rock sounds that join with post-punk fury.” – Gigwise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      “Its really charming. Great.” Laura Snapes (The Guardian / Pitchfork - For 6 Music Roundtable).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      TRACK LISTING

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Side A
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Take Arms
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Don’t You Ever Sleep
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I Choose Live News
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Never Enough
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sometimes I Wish (I Was A Different Person)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Side B
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Real Thing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Human Behaviour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I Tell You What
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Commercials
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The People, This Place