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Mikey Collins

Hoick

    Hoick is the solo album from Allo Darlin’ drummer Mikey Collins, who combines his love of solid grooves and joyous harmonies to create a fun and sonically varied record. Mikey played most of the instruments and mixed the record himself, with some assistance from Laura Kovic (Tigercats) on vocals and fellow Allo Darlin' member Paul Rains on lead guitar. The flicker of his previous band provided the building blocks of an upbeat, positive record, but Mikey wanted to add his own quirky, disco spin & sonic expansiveness. The aim to make a record that people stood a chance of being able to dance to. Mikey draws on influences as far flung as Dexy's, Bruce Springsteen, Night Works, Matthew E White & Father John Misty. Mikey began working on the album while he was in Allo Darlin’.

    The last few years were a conveyor belt of change as he; got married, had a child, bought a house, moved from London to be by the Kent coast and opened a residential studio Big Jelly Studios (Girl Ray, Metronomy, Pete Doherty, Mt Wolf, Seamus Fogarty & ELVA). In short, he grew up. The record journeys through these changes but has its roots firmly grounded in his new seaside habitat. His identity with and connection to the area is even incorporated into the album artwork – a startling photograph by local photographer Jason Evans (Radiohead / Keiran Hebden/Fourtet), incorporating flora and fauna of the region, an outer ring of pop glow that hints at the neon din of the seaside. 

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    LP includes MP3 Download Code.

    Stanley Brinks

    Peanuts

      After releasing a pair of playful records alongside of The Wave Pictures, and two albums of folk shanties and old-time calypso with Norway’s folk troupe The Kaniks, Stanley Brinks’ next release for Fika Recordings is back to being a solo affair, albeit with collaborator and long time muse Clemence Freschard alongside Claire Falzon and Helene Nuland. Stanley Brinks is renowned for his unique anti-folk style: both playful and suggestive, insightful and entertaining. Brinks was born in Paris, France, in 1973.

      He studied a bit of biology and worked as a nurse for a while. Half Swedish, half Moroccan, strongly inclined to travel the world, he soon began spending most of his life on the road and developed a strong relationship with New York. By the late 90s he’d become a full time singer-songwriter – André Herman Düne – as part of three piece indie-rock band, Herman Düne. Several albums and Peel sessions later and after a decade of touring Europe, mostly with American songwriters such as Jeffrey Lewis, Calvin Johnson and early Arcade Fire he settled in Berlin.

      The early carnival music of Trinidad became a passion, and in the early 21st century he became the unquestioned master of European calypso, changing his name to Stanley Brinks. Under this moniker he has recorded more than 100 albums, collaborated with the New York Antifolk scene on several occasions, recorded and toured with traditional Norwegian musicians, and played a lot with The Wave Pictures.

      FORMAT INFORMATION

      LP Info: Ruby red vinyl with download code.

      LP includes MP3 Download Code.

      The Just Joans

      You Might Be Smiling Now...

        Cult Scottish miserabilists The Just Joans are delighted to be releasing their first new album in more than a decade, following the band’s signing to Fika Recordings. Formed in Glasgow in 2005, The Just Joans have evolved from a shambling two-piece to an accomplished sextet that embraces rivalry and relationship in the vocals of siblings, David and Katie Pope. Once described as ‘the missing link between The Magnetic Fields and The Proclaimers’, the band have used self-awareness and self-deprecation to continuously explore themes of angst, heartbreak and detachment in their songs. From their 2006 debut album Last Tango in Motherwell through a series of successful EPs, to 2012’s compilation Buckfast Bottles In The Rain, the acerbic wit in David Pope’s observational lyrics have helped make the band a firm favourite of the indie-pop scene.

        Their rise has seen them play a plethora of international festivals, such as Wales Goes Pop, Indiefjords, NYC Popfest, and of course the Indietracks festival, of which they have been long-standing cult favourites since their first appearance in 2008. The band are excited to release You Might Be Smiling Now…, a self-recorded and produced collection of new songs. The release offers more of the same cynicism, but from an older if not necessarily wiser perspective as evidenced on lead single No Longer Young Enough and You Make Me Physically Sick (Let’s Start Having Children) is a jaundiced slice of toybox pop that crosses The Human League and Harold Steptoe. Complementing this shift in tone comes a more polished electronic sound on tracks A Matter of Time and Someone Else That You Like More Than Me while O' Caledonia sails along at a blistering pace like no Just Joans lament before it. Despite the band’s obvious maturity, You Might Be Smiling Now... still manages to maintain all the emotional charm and whimsical melodies that led The List to view The Just Joans as ‘a lovable blend of sleepy acoustic guitars, Brian Wilson-esque harmonies and West Coast sarcasm.

        Hayman Kupa Band

        The Hayman Kupa Band

          When Darren Hayman (Hefner) and Emma Kupa (Standard Fare/Mammoth Penguins) decided to make a duets record, we knew the results would be great, but we didn’t expect them to be THIS great. Gathering together a rhythm section consisting of Michael Wood (Whoa Melodic/Singing Adams) on bass and Cat Loye (Fever Dream) on drums, The Hayman Kupa Band create brash, bold and effortlessly melodic power pop. Sharing writing duties and sometimes singing each others words, lines are blurred and creativity explored in a wonderfully exuberant collection of songs.

          The album, recorded in 3 days, is an exploration of relationships and, at its heart, it’s the sound of a friendship being made. Darren explains further: It’s only happened a few times but just once or twice I have seen someone on stage and thought, “I want to be in a band with them.” But I thought it the first time I saw Emma playing with her magnificent and under-rated band Standard Fare. I met her properly a little later in Sheffield when we played together. Before the gig I said I was suspicious of bands that wore hats. She wore a hat on stage. They say imitation is a form of flattery and I was glad that I noticed when I wrote the song “Boy, Look at What you Can’t Have Now” that it sounded like the sort of thing Emma might write. I covered up my theft by asking her to sing on it. When we were recording the song I suggested that we should write a whole album of duets. Musicians suggest things like this all the time because they are stupid or drunk. A few months later Emma told me she had started writing the album. This is what Emma does; she says something then does it. I race to play catch up. The songs were written over 3 weekends at her house and mine. Co-writing is something I’m not used to. It’s very intimate and me and Emma became friends through the process. Emma’s lyrics are sharp and precise whereas mine are more metaphoric. We talked about relationships and that’s what the album is about. It’s about our fears and paranoias and the search for trust and love. We deliberately swapped lines and genders so the narrative is never truly that of traditional duets. We wanted a band to make the album and chose Michael Wood and Cat Loye. 

          Enderby’s Room is fiddle player Dan Mayfield, once from rural Lincolnshire, but he has now found home living in London. His folk tinged songs reflect on his traditional folk upbringing. Mayfield has played violin for many artists including Daniel Johnston, Darren Hayman, The Wave Pictures, Allo Darlin’ and the Belles of

          London City morris dancers. Over the past ten years he has gently built up a collection of his own songs, which he performs with his band Enderby’s Room. The name comes from an Anthony Burgess character called Mr Enderby who composed his prose inside the toilet. The band’s make up has been constantly evolving; around 30 different individuals have been a part of Enderby’s Room over the last decade, before settling on the current 5 piece lineup. Enderby’s Room’s sound features a Victorian pedal harmonium, together with French horn, double bass, ukulele, guitar and percussion. The artwork for the record was created by Johnny Voss whose style involves using a continuous single pen stroke to create his illustrations. As well as Enderby’s Room, Mayfield set up School of Noise which encourages young people to be creative with sound, using unusual noise making and sound sculpting machines. This project has seen him take workshops to the Green Man and End of the Road festivals as well as the Southbank Centre, Museum of London, Great Ormond Street Hospital and primary schools around the country.

          “Unfolding gently, the quiet grace of Enderby’s Room seems to draw on the folk tradition while taking brave chances of its own.” Clash Music"

           "At times they capture the sumptuous melancholia of Low; at others, they're finding new shapes for indie folk" How Does It Feel

          “their delicate harmonies, unusual instruments and vivid storytelling are intricately woven and desperately beautiful” Green Man Festival

          “an absolute stunner. The harmonies and whimsical melodies will take you to places you never dreamed of; imagine the most beautiful sunset, the most beautiful starry night sky and you will begin to get a picture of where this amazing song will take you. The lyrics are full of reflection and wonder, leaving you feeling warm and content… make Enderby’s Room one of the many bands you fall head over heels in love with during 2017”

          Sally Shapiro

          If You Ever Wanna Change Your Mind

          The name “Sally Shapiro” refers to both the Swedish duo, consisting of the producer Johan Agebjörn and an anonymous singer, as well as the pseudonym of the singer herself. In December 2004 Johan discovered Shapiro’s gentle and beautiful voice while the two were singing Christmas carols together. Their first track, 'I'll B e By Your Side', was released as a 12" single on May 12th, 2006, on the Austrian label Diskokaine (run by DJ/producer Wolfram Eckert).

          Sally Shapiro’s debut album, 'Disco Romance', was a nostalgic trip back to romantic italo disco of 1984. The album was revered by the press, nominated as “dance/electronic album of the year” at the U.S. Plug Awards and was given a spot in Pitchfork’s Top 50 albums of 2007. The tracks on the album were subsequently remixed by Lindstrøm, Tensnake, Junior Boys, CFCF, and Juan MacLean. Sally Shapiro is known for her shyness: she does not reveal her real name, will not even let Johan into the studio when she sings, and has never performed her songs live. After a handful of DJ dates in 2008, she decided to never ever stand on stage again. However, the duo released two more studio albums, 'My Guilty Pleasure' in 2009 and 'Somewhere Else' in 2013. Apart from a collaboration single with Tommy '86 - 'Why Did I Say Goodbye' - and a few appearances on Johan's solo album Notes in 2015, Sally Shapiro has been silent since the last album.

          The new two-track single is scheduled for a release on the 10th anniversary of 'I'll Be By Your Side', and will be the last recorded piece of music by Sally Shapiro. They explain why: ”Our musical tastes don't overlap that much anymore. Johan is more into 90s-style electronica these days, and Sally is into non-electronic pop. In three years, we've only managed to record these two songs as Sally Shapiro, so with this single we have decided to call our musical project a day, and we would like to thank everyone who followed us on this journey.” The A-side, 'If You Ever Wanna Change Your Mind', was co-written by longtime collaborator Roger Gunnarsson and co-produced by Mitch Murder (Kung Fury OST). The B-side, 'Dangerous', is an acoustic interpretation of the David Guetta hit, with guitar played by Johan's cousin, Jonas Agebjörn. 

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Ltd 7" Info: 7” white vinyl single with download (including two bonus download remixes), 500 only.

          A collection of heartwarming pop songs, touched with Scandinavian cool. Blending sweet male and female vocals with a lush soundscape filled with jangling guitars, buoyant drumming and textured synth lines, the Norwegian quartet have a real knack for melody and a keen ear for rich instrumentation.

          Making Marks formed in Oslo in 2012 and are made up of Ola Innset on guitar and vocals, Nina Bø on vocals and keyboards, Marie Sneve on bass and Jørgen Nordby on drums. They’ve gigged with the likes of Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Asobi Seksu, Allo Darlin’ and Marit Larsen, and have toured extensively around Europe and the USA, including appearances at SXSW. They recorded a number of tracks for the album at Soup Studios in London, with Simon Trought and Giles Barrett. It was their influence that saw Paul Rains from Allo Darlin' playing lap steel on the song “Barcodes” and this led to Making Marks supporting Allo Darlin’ in Europe.

          The rest of the album is recorded in Oslo with respected indie producer Sjur Lyseid, who has worked with the band in various guises over the years. A Thousand Half-Truths as an album is one of tensions – both resolved and unresolved. Making Marks initially planned to go down a folk/country musical path, however they soon realised that indie came more naturally to them. Yet, the tension between the country and the pop still remained, with folky melodies echoing the extended harmonies of The Carpenters, whilst their propensity for banjos, ukuleles and harmonicas faded away to leave the band sounding more integral and functional. This left them with a set of quietly confident, melancholy country songs as played by an bubbly indiepop band.


          Cosines

          Hey Sailor Boy!

          Limited edition 7” vinyl single (300 copies) with free mp3 download. The debut single from Cosines will be out on Fika Recordings as a limited edition 7” single with download.

          Hey Sailor Boy! is a love song from one girl pirate to her sailor boy. Originally written by Alice for fictional band The Girl Pirates (who's extended membership included unwittingly comedian David Cross and Decemberists singer Colin Meloy), the band never got much further than one drunken rum soaked practice and "Hey Sailor Boy!" was packed away. The song took on a new lease of life with Cosines, with a stomping piano riff, soulful beat and sweet strings (arranged and performed by Elefant Record's A Little Orchestra), comparisons could be made to the classic pop of Camera Obscura, The Beach Boys, The Concretes and The Magnetic Fields. Cosines are a mathematical pop band from north London. Simon Nelson and Alice Hubley met on the London Underground after a Stereo Totale gig in 2009. Two days later Simon was round Alice's house unblocking her kitchen drain. Since then Simon has been round and put up two curtain rails, a blind and a shelf.

          This unlikely meeting, got them talking and once the DIY was done they started making music together, fusing metronomic pop sensibilities, 60's grooves and krautrock noise. What you maybe would get if you mix Love, United States of America and Stereolab. As a band they are constantly trying to find the perfect meeting point between clean synths and fuzz guitars. The band's line up was completed by Alice's old Loves bandmates Daniel Chapman and Jonny Drums and A Smile and A Ribbon's Kajsa Tretow. The band played their first show in April 2012, and since then have played shows with Comet Gain, Shrag and Still Flyin' as well the Indietracks Festival. The band are currently working on a debut album and consequently doing less DIY.


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