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Walter TV

Carpe Diem

    Walter TV are Mac DeMarco’s touring band, this is their third Album. “Appetite is frenetic and weird, a psychedelic garage pop opus for the glue-sniffing generation.” Big Takeover // “Walter TV are giddy and strange. They may lean towards surf, with a little dose of math rock, but the fact is they are musically unpredictable. Delightfully so. It’s their charm.” Ride The Tempo // “Ten tight tracks of refined wackiness, Blessed is woozy but sharp, the kind of record you’d want to come out of either a Montreal club or a British Columbia beach house.” A.V. Club // What is there to be said that hasn't already been said about the old Walter TV band?

    Our main men in the group (Joe McMurray, Simon Ankenman, Pierce McGarry) are either aged 30 or close to. They do their best to make music that is meaningful, interesting, and…danceable? Emotionally razed these bad boys are pumping out of the ashes, instruments in hand. With their new release, Carpe Diem, Walter TV has taken their version of lo-fi recording to a near professional level (or at least attempted to).

    The album deals with all the classic tropes that no person can seem to escape or avoid (except the enlightened few) including, suffering, loss, death, love, chaos, inevitability, declining conditions of earth, self inflicted spiritual pain, heart attacks, forfeiture of morals, yearning, attempts at doing the right thing, karma (police), moments of clarity, depression, introversion/extroversion, the singularity, technological advancements, neglect, insults of opulence, lack of co mmunity and looking out for your fellow people, being paranoid…you get the point! 

    Sarah Mary Chadwick

    Sugar Still Melts The Rain

      New Zealand multi-instrumentalist and visual artist Sarah Mary Chadwick is not a new face to Melbourne’s music community. After spending a decade fronting the New Zealand formed grunge band ‘Batrider’, Sarah became tired of the collaborative requirements intrinsic to band life and shifted her focus to songwriting independently, drawing inspiration from ‘weird old New Zealand musicians’ and the way they ‘tinker away and work for decades for little to no commercial success’.

      Six years and three solo records later - ‘Eating For Two’ (Bedroom Suck Records), ‘9 Classic Tracks’ (Siltbreeze) and ‘Roses Always Die’ (Rice Is Nice Records), Sarah will join fellow songwriters Homeshake, Jaye Bartell and Tim Cohen on Omnian Music Group’s label Sinderlyn to release her fourth solo record Sugar Still Melts In The Rain.

      To listen to Sarah’s music is to be an observer to her thoughts on love, death and mental health. Sometimes this anguish bears itself in quiet moments of the record, but more often torment manifests at the break of Sarah’s voice as she sing-shouts painfully self-aware lyrics. Learning that Sarah’s songwriting is thoroughly autobiographical is perhaps more unnerving than the sexually deviant pornographic art that she creates to accompany her music.

      Cults

      Offering

        Cults made their name in black and white. A pair of film school dropouts who burst onto the New York scene with a perfect single and a darkly retro sound, the band’s first two albums play like noirish documentaries on a lost girl group. Four years after Static, Cults returns with Offering, an exciting collection of songs bursting with heart, confidence, shimmering melody and buzzing life. The time off has given the band new energy and new ideas–Cults are working in Technicolor now.

        The core duo remains the same. Madeline Follin and Brian Oblivion, both 28, still live in New York. They still finish each other’s thoughts and still share a love of catchy music and black humor. But the pair have put some blood on the tracks since their breakout debut: they’ve toured the world, built a devoted audience, survived a breakup, grown up in green rooms, parted ways with their old label and made a home of their new one.

        After the whirlwind of Static died down, Follin and Oblivion made a conscious decision to shift gears: “I feel like we stepped into a tour van when we were 21, and basically didn’t get out of it for the next few years,” Oblivion says. “We wanted to give ourselves some space to have normal lives, and wait until there was something new to say.” Cults took their time, going through a few dozen discarded demos before arriving on a pair of songs that felt special– the rollicking, sweet-but-dark “Right Words” and the buzzy earworm “Recovery.” Offering will thrill ride-or-die Cults fans, but also goes places Cults haven't gone before. 

        FORMAT INFORMATION

        Coloured LP Info: Limited Indies Only yellow vinyl.

        Fresh & Onlys

        Wolf Lie Down

          Three long years of anticipation have preceded San Francisco’s psych-blasted, starry-eyed weirdos The Fresh & Onlys’ return with Wolf Lie Down. The opening title track is a searing return to form with chugging full speed rhythms, snotty Wipers wall-of-sound guitar gristle, and the unmistakable midnight croon of singer Tim Cohen.

          Their 6th LP and debut for Sinderlyn Records finds the band equally at home with anthemic garage rock burners like “Impossible Man” and “One Of A Kind,” and the brooding western twang of “Walking Blues” or “Black Widow”. While Cohen and guitarist/producer Wymond Miles are not the new kids on the scene (both are fathers of two now), Wolf Lie Down strips back the layered feel of the last few records to reveal themselves full of passion, imbued with an uplifting romanticism, and their trademark (if often overlooked) wry sense of humor. Recorded mostly at Miles’ home studio, the songs’ foundation came to life in the studios of Bay Area analog garage/ psych veterans Kelley Stoltz (Electric Duck) and Greg Ashley (Creamery).

          Wolf Lie Down builds on the band’s literate guitar-pop arcana, seamlessly incorporating their pastoral desert-noir sensibility into Cohen and Miles’ dueling damaged art-punk songcraft. While the record is driven and performed predominately by the duo of Miles and Cohen, former members Shayde Sartin and Kyle Gibson lay down their classic rhythmic chug on a few tunes. They also enlisted original drummer James Kim, as well as touring companion James Barone (Beach House) on drums and some mixing duties. This new chapter in the elusive world of The Fresh & Onlys is a triumphant return to form as underground jangle titans. Wolf Lie Down also wears the haunted pastoral vividness of their most recent work.

          Perhaps ironically, their latest LP in a vast canon of work may be the best introduction to this unapologetic multi-faceted rock ‘n’ roll band. “Play It Strange is suffused with a deep, widescreen ambience that assumes an almost physical presence. Between its psychedelic flip-outs, winsome hooks, shaky tempos, and Ennio Morricone atmospherics, the album sounds like Nuggets emanating from a vividly hip space station.” SPIN // “Even if Long Slow Dance ... were not loaded with excellent songs, it would be worthy of affection because it is so unabashedly imbued with this lost sense of romanticism.

          On UK quartet Novella's sophomore album Change of State, the plasticity behind the meaning of the title was no fortuitous afterthought. Rather, it is very idea on which the album was built. Following the band's debut, Land, released in 2015, the band has toured, traveling from one country to the next, and they have watched their home country of Britain change dramatically in social and political terms.

          Over the course of ten tracks, Novella take the time and space necessary to let the physical and ideological implications behind a changing state run rampant through themes that linger as much in topical discussion as they do in perennial reflections of human experience. Recorded over the period of a few months in the Victorian bedroom studio of James Hoare (Ultimate Painting, Veronica Falls) on an old 1960’s 8-track, this set up forced Novella to utilize an economy of sound on Change of State. They discovered that there’s beauty in simplicity and restriction as nothing could be gratuitously added or subtracted with the click of a mouse. It lent, what the band call a little Joe Meek magic to the process, and what could have been an added pressure instead gave way to instinct: “The best songs we wrote were written towards the end of the sessions, when we had too little time to think too much about them” Reflective, the songs wash over you as they delve into topics weightier than they seem upon first blush: stand out track “Change of State” references freedom of thought and those who seek to restrict it. Brooding with tinges of psychedelia, “Thun” touches on birth and the freedom of movement, which is mirrored in its almost motorik thrust. With deftly deployed subtlety, the album revolves around themes of conspiracy theories, elections, sound mirrors and the disillusioned texts of Murakami, JG Ballard and Kurt Vonnegut.

          However, in what may in fact be the ultimate comment on our time, it is entirely possible to enjoy all the ethereal swathes of textures, gentle melodies and energetic bursts that Change of State has to offer without ruminating on any of the elements that inspired it. Change of State may be product of its time, but the music is, more than anything, timeless.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          LP includes MP3 Download Code.

          Cymbals Eat Guitars

          Pretty Years

          Pretty Years, the wildly ambitious fourth LP for Cymbals Eat Guitars, is easily the band’s most sonically enigmatic and most rewarding album yet. Their trademark cacophonic guitar rock and innate propulsion are still abundant, but they’re buttressed by raucous synth and keyboard lines, and an extemporaneous saxophone performance, which enrich when they could easily clutter these songs. The band also worked more quickly and efficiently than they had in the past, facilitated by years on the road in which they’ve played close to a thousand shows, which rendered them a tight, fully-oiled machine in the studio. Opener “Finally” shimmers with complex beauty, leading into the sweet rush of “Have a Heart,” which finds lead singer and guitarist Joseph D’Agostino singing, “I’m so out of sync / And you’re out of sync with me,” which could well be a mantra for the visceral appeal of this superb record. The entire album is rife with electrified, flashbulb moments—“4th of July, Philadelphia (SANDY)” conveys the madness of life on the road, exhibiting D’Agostino’s uncanny ability to transform minutiae into profundity. This skill is evident in spades on the record’s centerpiece and opus, the disarmingly vulnerable “Dancing Days.” The song also exhibits the contributions of Whipple, and slyly invokes the album’s title in its magisterial chorus, as D’Agostino contritely croons, “Goodbye to my pretty years.” And indeed, Pretty Years is a roller coaster ride, both lyrically and sonically, that encompasses what it’s like to be alive and in the moment. But ultimately, this is an album that keenly captures the magic and loss attendant to living life wide-eyed, and hints that these “pretty years” may portend even prettier ones to come. “On the lead single from this year’s Pretty Years, these young Americans have gone full ‘Tenth Avenue Freeze Out,’ embracing ’70s rock in all its brassy pomp and soulful stomp. When these guys said they wanted to make a more energetic album, they must have meant one you could dance to.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Barry says: Think hazy summer montage : diving off a rope swing into one of the great lakes, people laughing at outdoor parties, throwing frisbees or spraying their mates with a hose whilst washing their car. This is effervescent and upbeat indie-rock, filmic and feel-good. Jangly guitars and open-closed-open snare hits, topped with demi-punk vocals (slightly snarling, filled with youthful growl and vim). Things take a punkier turn on songs like 'Beam', where 'Close' is a slightly more meditative minor-key affair. Closer 'Shrine' is a natural culmination on this increasing emotive arc, encompassing elements of all of the previous tonal shifts, whilst retaining the sound that really makes them "them". A fulfilling and thrilling ride, and one i'd be happy to take again.


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