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Ride

Interplay

    Everything feels like it has been leading to 'Interplay', Ride's seventh album, the third since their 2015 reunion. It’s the sound of the group connecting all the dots, taking the frenzied guitar attacks, hypnotic grooves and dreamy melodic hooks of their early work and setting it to a more expansive sonic template, one that takes in synth flourishes, psychedelic folk, electronic beats and noir-pop soundscapes.

    It has been a period of adversity in the world of Ride. Much of that was down to writing and recording during a pandemic – a period of adversity shared by everyone, everywhere – but there was also break-ups and a messy legal battle with an ex-manager that, singer and guitarist Mark Gardener states, “threatened our very existence.” It has instilled in the record a feeling of defiance, an album that pairs classic Ride lyrical hallmarks such as escapism, dreams, the dissatisfaction of modern life, yearning and freedom with a sense of resilience.

    Songs began springing up in a variety of ways. Initially working at Gardener’s own OX4 studio, there were extended jams from which pieces of music would be honed upon and reworked into something more concise whilst each band member also brought in their own home-recorded demos to work from too. That everything was filtered through what happens when the four-piece play in a room together is alluded to the record’s title.

    After a year or so of sporadic sessions at OX4, the record started to take a more defined shape when, at producer Richie Kennedy’s suggestion, they decamped to Vada Studios in the Midlands. Kennedy, who was part of Erol Alkan’s team on Ride’s previous two records, had entered the sessions as a spare pair of hands but his role grew organically into producer. He became a crucial part of Interplay’s creation – the band credit him as a galvanising force when they were running out of steam.

    'Interplay' is a rich listen that flows from start to finish, at times urgent and formidable, at others wistful and melancholic. It's the sound of a great British band hitting a second peak. It’s a record about perseverance, about sticking together, about finding a way forward. Nine years after coming back together, Ride keep rewriting their story.


    STAFF COMMENTS

    Liam says: Shoegaze legends Ride return with 'Interplay' and it once again shows that this reunion was worth waiting for! Whist Ride still have their roots planted within the shoegaze pantheon, 'Interplay's sonic palette sees the band at their most synth heavy and electronic to date. It's a welcome excursion and Ride's signature hooks and DNA remain intact!

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Peace Sign
    2. Last Frontier
    3. Light In A Quiet Room
    4. Monaco
    5. I Came To See The Wreck
    6. Stay Free
    7. Last Night I Went Somewhere To Dream
    8. Sunrise Chaser
    9. Midnight Rider
    10. Portland Rocks
    11. Essaouira
    12. Yesterday Is Just A Song

    Ride

    Nowhere - 2022 Reissue

      Ahead of their ‘Nowhere’ 30th anniversary UK tour starting 20th April, shoegaze legends Ride have announced the details of the reissues of their early classic albums via Wichita Recordings.

      Back in the early 90s, before indie bands made the tabloids, Ride were one of our great white hopes. Fusing the sonic headrush of My Bloody Valentine with the Byrds' jingle-jangle immediacy, they seemed destined to shine. Debut album "Nowhere" captured them at their adolescent peak and "Vapour Trail" is effectively their signature tune; FX pedal-enhanced guitar assaults and nascent teenage vocals tempered by a love of all things pop.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Liam says: Alongside 'Souvlaki' and 'Loveless', 'Nowhere' is one of the holy trinity albums of shoegaze and it's about time we have this absolute classic available again! From the blistering opener of 'Seagull', to the shimmering and spell-bounding closer of 'Vapour Trail', albums don't get much better than 'Nowhere'. Plus, thank goodness nobody needs to pay a million pounds for a copy off of Discogs anymore!

      TRACK LISTING

      Seagull
      Kaleidoscope
      In A Different Place
      Polar Bear
      Dreams Burn Down
      Decay
      Paralysed
      Vapour Trail

      Ride

      Going Blank Again - 2022 Reissue

        Ahead of their ‘Nowhere’ 30th anniversary UK tour starting 20th April, shoegaze legends Ride have announced the details of the reissues of their early classic albums via Wichita Recordings.

        The follow-up to "Nowhere", "Going Blank Again" saw the Oxford quartet embrace their prog side. Lead single "Leave Them All Behind" was an eight minute FX-pedal onslaught that somehow managed to crack the top twenty and get them on TOTP. On the other hand, "Twisterella" and "Mouse Trap" proved they could strip away the noise in favour of concise three minute pop melodies. A career best.

        STAFF COMMENTS

        Liam says: Releasing only a year and a half after 'Nowhere', 'Going Blank Again' was more exemplary shoegaze from Ride and really showed that they were a band at the height of their powers. Again, much like the other two reissues, this release is essential if you've not already got a copy. Also, best album opener of all time? You'll be hard pressed to beat the 8 minute goliath of 'Leave Them All Behind'.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Leave Them All Behind
        2. Twisterella
        3. Not Fazed
        4. Chrome Waves
        5. Mouse Trap
        6. Time Of Her Time
        7. Cool Your Boots
        8. Making Judy Smile
        9. Time Machine
        10. OX4
        11. Going Blank Again
        12. Howard Hughes
        13. Stampede
        14. Grasshopper

        Ride

        4 EPs

          Ahead of their ‘Nowhere’ 30th anniversary UK tour starting 20th April, shoegaze legends Ride have announced the details of the reissues of their early classic albums via Wichita Recordings.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Liam says: A collection of Ride's first EPs 'Ride', 'Play', 'Fall' and 'Today Forever', '4 EPs' is a slice of essential music history and a must for any shoegaze fan! To be honest, it's worth it alone just for 'Drive Blind'.

          TRACK LISTING

          Chelsea Girl
          Drive Blind
          All I Can See
          Close My Eyes
          Like A Daydream
          Silver
          Furthest Sense
          Perfect Time
          Dreams Burn Down
          Taste
          Here And Now
          Nowhere
          Unfamiliar
          Sennen
          Beneath
          Today

          Julia Bardo

          Bauhaus, L'Appartamento

            Debut album from Manchester-via-Italy singer, songwriter and guitarist Julia Bardo.

            Produced and mixed by Younghusband’s Euan Hinshelwood, the record firmly establishes Bardo’s musical adventurousness and prowess, and marks a cathartic and self-affirming moment for an artist who found her voice by realizing it's been there all along.

            The album is best summed up by the woman who wrote it all: “Bauhaus, L’Appartamento is about loneliness, solitude, separation...but also unconditional love,” Bardo reveals of the record’s overarching themes. “Family, emotional dependency, mental health issues, feelings of emptiness and numbness, feelings of not being enough, inability to be in control of my own emotions, self-doubt, self-reflection, past traumas and dealing with them.”

            Named after the apartment complex she lived in when demoing the album’s recordings, but with an Italian twist.

            Follows the release of two EPs, Phase and The Raw EP, which saw her experiment further with her wistful and mysterious sound to become the alternative pop artist she is today.

            Her musical journey began in Brescia in Northern Italy, where she sang and wrote lyrics for a local band between shifts at her father’s bar. A free spirit craving new inspiration, she relocated to Manchester and it was here she developed her striking style as a solo musician before also meeting and joining post-punk band Working Men’s Club. Never losing her strong desire to have full creative control over her music, she returned to become a solo artist again.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Emily says: Julia Bardo: Local talent alert!! Gorgeous, off kilter pop songs which have more bite to them than you might expect. Sonorous vocals and deft melodic interplay met with moments of jangling dissonance. FFO Cate Le Bon and Aldous Harding!

            Ride

            Clouds In The Mirror : This Is Not A Safe Place Reimagined By Pêtr Aleksänder

              Ride handed the entirety of their highly acclaimed 6th studio album, ‘This Is Not A Safe Place’, to mysterious London act Pêtr Aleksänder, who stripped the songs back to just the vocals and added their customarily beautiful string arrangements, keys and synth textures beneath them.

              The results take Ride deep into the neo-classical / ambient territory that a couple of the remixes of their previous album hinted at.

              TRACK LISTING

              R.I.D.E.
              Future Love
              Repetition
              Kill Switch
              Clouds Of Saint Marie
              Eternal Recurrence
              Fifteen Minutes
              Jump Jet
              Dial Up
              End Game
              Shadows Behind The Sun
              In This Room

              First Aid Kit

              The Big Black And The Blue (Love Record Stores Edition)

                Love Record Stores Edition available from 9am on Saturday June 20th.
                Limited to one per person.


                Sea blue vinyl.

                Will Samson

                Paralanguage

                  Will Samson still remembers his first - and only - experiments with psilocybin. For some time, following the death of his father in 2012, the British musician had suffered from mild PTSD, unable to process the grief provoked by the sudden nature of his passing. It took him several years, however, before he felt confident enough to explore the possibilities this popular compound was said to offer. Finally, he and his girlfriend retreated to the countryside for a day. Samson’s fifth album, ‘Paralanguage’ - his first for Wichita Recordings - was in many ways inspired by his subsequent experiences and seeks to emulate them too. Indeed, vocals for two tracks, ‘Ochre Alps’ and ‘Flowerbed’, which he’d been struggling to finish for a number of months, were written and recorded over two subsequent afternoons spent micro-dosing.

                  Perhaps not surprisingly, ‘Paralanguage’ - the title chosen because the album’s central themes address the way “our bodies, not just our minds, hold memories and emotions” - is Samson’s most cohesive album to date. There’s a conspicuously tender thread running through its eight songs, from ‘Calescent’, its eloquently poignant opener, to ‘Lacuna’’s fuzzy nostalgia, from ‘Beyond The Dust’’s sweet serenity to ‘The Smallest Sliver’’s redemptive fragility. Samson’s voice, too, has never sounded more moving, committed or confident, his yearning falsetto as touching as his gentle tenor - comparisons to Sufjan Stevens and Patrick Watson are not inappropriate - while his arrangements are intricate yet never ostentatious, with precisely detailed programming inseparable from the warmth of his analogue instrumentation. “Perhaps,” Samson observes, “it's a reflection of feeling more centred and grounded.”

                  Recorded largely in his home studio in Brussels - the first time he’s had a space exclusively devoted to his music - ‘Paralanguage’ finds Samson reunited with regular collaborator Beatrijs De Klerck, a violinist who also plays with A Winged Victory For The Sullen and Christina Vantzou. Ben Lester, who’s worked with S. Carey and Sufjan Stevens, added pedal steel to ‘Beyond The Dust’ and Jeremy Boettcher (who also performs with S. Carey) added double bass to ‘The Human Mosaic’, while Canadian songwriter Michael Feuerstack added backing vocals to ‘The Smallest Sliver’.

                  Otherwise, the album is all Samson’s own work, a testament to his desire to seek peace not just on record but in his life. A tribute to his inquisitive nature, ‘Paralanguage’ is also, ultimately, a memorial to his father, whose life shaped Samson’s own and whose tragic passing has now inadvertently yielded a source of magical consolation for us all. As the 30-year-old sings on ‘The Smallest Sliver’, “Sometimes my love feels too big for my body / So I have to let it go.” In doing so, Will Samson has allowed us all to share it.

                  TRACK LISTING

                  Calescent
                  Beyond The Dust
                  Flowerbed
                  Triplet
                  Lacuna
                  The Human Mosaic
                  Ochre Alps
                  The Smallest Sliver

                  Oscar Scheller

                  HTTP404

                    We dare you not to smile ear-to-ear when listening to Oscar Scheller’s newest single, Interstellar Disco. Despite its cheerful disposition on the surface, the song’s cosmic alignment into existence actually occurred from a darker place. Oscar explains “The day I wrote it was probably one of the hardest days of my life and it means something very special to me. Luckily I was writing with Lucy (PAWWS) who is a musical soulmate and the perfect dance partner. We found a bittersweet escape. It’s there when you need it”.

                    “It’s a song about a two friends meeting at a fantasy location called the Interstellar Disco. It’s a place you go when the sky feels too low and the universe feels too big and you just wanna forget about everything and dance like Napoleon Dynamite”.

                    Oscar’s forthcoming HTTP404 project boasts a series of noteworthy collaborations with the likes of Lily Allen, Ashnikko, Havelock, and Kero Kero Bonito’s Sarah Midori Perri. The set of songs focuses on the importance of searching for something that no longer exists, not finding what you’re looking for. It’s philosophical & existential in places, but there’s an underlying message across the board to stop thinking about things so much & just start living!

                    Speaking about the project Oscar Scheller had to say “I’ve been gone for a minute, trying to find myself, and I think I did. I also found a lot of friends along the way. What you’re looking for may not exist how you think it does. It may not even be what you thought it was either. HTTP404 is where I’ve been. But now I’m back online with good enough WiFi and a heart full of love”.


                    TRACK LISTING

                    1 1Up
                    2 Picture Perfect
                    3 Interstellar Disco
                    4 1%
                    5 Confidence
                    6 Estate Of Mind
                    7 Runaway
                    8 Go
                    9 Happy Meals
                    10 Tidal Waves
                    11 Young

                    Ride are back with their second album since reforming — it’s titled This is Not a Safe Place and is out via Wichita. They once again teamed with producer Erol Alkan and mixer Alan Moulder, both of whom worked on 2017’s Weather Diaries, which came together quickly at the end of 2018. The first single is the sparkling “Future Love” which feature Ride’s lush, signature harmonies. They’ve always had a Byrds side to them and that plays out nicely here in a “Twisterella” kind of way. “Future Love is a song about the beginning of a relationship, when everything feels possible,” says the band’s Andy Bell. 

                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Barry says: Ride were obviously one of the most influential bands in the shoegaze scene in the early 90's but since their reformation for 2017's ' Weather Diaries' have veered a little more towards the more stargazing end of the indie spectrum. Big rock choruses and catchy riffs work their way beautifully beneath the ever-hypnotic vocals of Gardner & Bell. A huge leap from their already brilliant 2017 offering, and another sign of Ride's essential place in our musical landscape.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    R.I.D.E.
                    Future Love
                    Repetition
                    Kill Switch
                    Clouds Of Saint Marie
                    Eternal Recurrence
                    15 Minutes
                    Jump Jet
                    Dial Up
                    End Game
                    Shadows Behind The Sun
                    In This Room

                    After a two-year hiatus, Los Angeles’ noise-rock trio Froth is back with their most fully realized work to date. A band of impeccable musicianship and an elevated sense of humor, the lead single is a twisted love song underlined with blown out guitars. “This song is about a guy who listened to the Yanny/Laurel thing and he can only hear Laurel,” shares the band. “He’s really passionate about Laurel being the correct pronunciation to the point where he will die before admitting otherwise. In the end, he reveals that he loves his girlfriend more than he loves the correct pronunciation of “Laurel/Yanny”.

                    Froth has never been a band content with the status quo. After three records, scoring the Saint Laurent Men's Fall 2014 line fashion show (with frontman Joo Joo walking in the show), and forays into shoegaze, psychedelia and post-punk, the band of Joo-Joo Ashworth, Jeremy Katz and Cameron Allen have stepped outside the shadow of their influences and into something wholly their own. Co-produced with longtime friend and collaborator Tomas Dolas (Oh Sees/Mr. Elevator), the record is unapologetically experimental yet undeniably accessible. It’s an impressive and self-assured statement from a group only just entering their prime.

                    With Duress, Froth has finally been able to realize their vision without compromise. Mirroring their open-minded studio approach, Froth’s live show is equally enthralling in its incorporation of analog synthesizers, overdubs and drum machines.


                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Barry says: Trading in the sort of head-nodding eyes-closed psychedelic fuzz that King Gizz *could* do if they tried (sorry), Froth are immediately satisfying but brilliantly deep, revealing more charm to their angular and surprising melodic turns the more you listen to them. Brittle in points, but perfectly measured throughout, 'Duress' is an exciting and exhilarating ride.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    Laurel
                    Catalog
                    Dialogue
                    A2
                    Department Head
                    77
                    John Peel Slowly
                    Xvaños
                    Slow Chamber
                    Syndrome

                    Indoor Pets (formerly known as Get Inuit) formed straight after leaving school in Sittingbourne, Kent, it wasn’t long before their effortless songs were attracting attention, with one of them making Record Of The Week on BBC Introducing and within two weeks Huw Stephens had picked up on the track.

                    For the next few years Indoor Pets wrote and gigged incessantly, building up a batch of killer tunes and a devoted fanbase across the country. They did, and still do, everything themselves. From making the artwork to organising their own tours on the road, producing music, building their own stage monitoring system and even running their own finances (Simpson: “if anyone wants to spend any money they have to ask me,”). It’s a fiercely DIY ethic born less from punk principle as it was from necessity. “It was either do it yourself or don’t have it done,” notes Glass, “and we decided to do it ourselves.”

                    Signing to Wichita Recordings, the band set about recording their debut album, a record seemingly full of a bottomless pool of great tunes. Familiar feelings of not fitting in or wanting to play the hand life’s dealt you are delivered with self-deprecating wit and Glass’ trademark use of double-bluffing word play. Think Rivers Cuomo and a pre-sandpit Brian Wilson bunking off school to play records and snigger at the cool kids. They’re smart, life-affirming and all contained within a thumping primary-coloured pop wallop.


                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Barry says: Brilliantly encompassing the lo-fi aesthetic that's become so popular nowadays, Indoor Pets have a penchant for snappy percussion and mid-heavy fuzzy guitars, all topped with the snarling vocals of Jamie Glass. It's an intoxicating combination, and one sure to have you bobbing your head with the best of 'em. Awesome.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    1. Hi
                    2. Teriyaki
                    3. Thick
                    4. Spill (My Guts)
                    5. Pro Procrastinator
                    6. Couch
                    7. Heavy Thoughts
                    8. The Mapping Of Dandruff
                    9. Being Strange
                    10. Mean Heart
                    11. Good Enough
                    12. Barbiturates
                    13. Cutie Pie, I’m Bloated
                    14. My Amnesiac

                    Cleveland, OH’s Cloud Nothings return with their loudest record to date. Undeniably one of the finest and most captivating live acts on the face of the planet, this record goes further towards capturing that power and intensity than any of their previous releases.

                    The album was produced by legend of heavy music Randall Dunn (Sunn O))), Earth, Oren Ambarchi, Marissa Nadler, Black Mountain) at Sonic Ranch in El Paso, TX.

                    Weighing in at just over thirty minutes it’s a singular listen that reflects the band’s live tenacity - one that sees them surge through the tracks at a speed hitherto unseen on previous outings - the perfect antidote to 2017’s ‘Life Without Sound’.

                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Barry says: Brilliantly dynamic thrashing punky riffs, angular math-rocky riffing and snarling vox, all brought together into Cloud Nothings' newest outing. Richly melodic but filled with unexpected twists and turns, forging an interesting and rewarding listen. Definitely one for blasting out at the skate park.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    On An Edge
                    Leave Him Now
                    In Shame
                    Offer An End
                    The Echo Of The World
                    Dissolution
                    So Right So Clean
                    Another Way Of Life

                    The Goon Sax

                    We're Not Talking

                      The Goon Sax are James Harrison, Louis Forster and Riley Jones from Brisbane, Australia. Still in high school when they made their first album Up To Anything in 2016, their brand of awkwardly transcendent teenage guitar pop took earned them wide-spread critical acclaim.

                      For album number two, they flew to Melbourne to record with James Cecil and Cameron Bird, respectively former/current members of Architecture In Helsinki, and 'We're Not Talking' shows how much can change between the ages of 17 and 19. It's a record that takes the enthusiasms of youth and twists them into darker, more sophisticated shapes. Relationships are now laced with hesitation, remorse, misunderstanding and ultimately compassion.

                      Drummer Riley Jones really comes to the fore here, joining Louis and James in singing lead and writing songs for the first time, making the band the musical equivalent of an equilateral triangle (the strongest shape in physics).

                      Delivering brilliantly human and brutally honest vignettes of adolescent angst, The Goon Sax brim with personality, charm and heart-wrenching honesty. 'We’re Not Talking' is a record made by restless artists, defying expectations as if hardly noticing, and its complexity makes 'We're Not Talking' even more of a marvel.




                      STAFF COMMENTS

                      Barry says: 'Up To Anything' was a revelation when it came in, brilliantly clever and melodic, but gritty and poetic at the same time. 'Were Not Talking' continues that legacy but with a bit more of a world-wise tilt, swapping out some of the major key melodies and psychedelic progressions for more solemn interludes, focused more on the nuances of songmanship than the youthful power of the debut. A brilliant progression from this Australian trio, and yet another reason why we'll continue to love The Goon Sax.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Make Time 4 Love
                      2. Love Lost
                      3. She Knows
                      4. Losing Myself
                      5. Somewhere In Between
                      6. Strange Light
                      7. Sleep EZ
                      8. We Can't Win
                      9. A Few Times Too Many
                      10. Now You Pretend
                      11. Get Out
                      12. Til The End

                      Simian Mobile Disco

                      Murmurations

                      Simian Mobile Disco's fifth full length album, "Murmurations", features vocals from celebrated Hackney-based collective The Deep Throat Choir and sees the established dance duo further bolster their already impressive sonic portfolio with another thrilling nine songs done in their inimitable, stadium-pleasing electronic style.

                      As perfectly pitched for headphones as it is for clubs, and named after giant cloud formations of starlings and themed around the stunning emergent behaviors that appear within them. To mirror these movements in the sonic landscape and visuals of "Murmurations", SMD’s James Ford and Jas Shaw also collaborated with creative directors Kazim Rashid of ENDLESSLOVESHOW (Aphex Twin, Flying Lotus, Hudson Mohawk) and Carri Munden. Together with The Deep Throad Choir, they have created a sprawling, dramatic and expansive piece of work. The delicate and evocative vocal parts ride SMD's textured electronic structures and rhythms in ethereal and enchanted ways, while the long duration of the tracks truly absorbs the listener in their magic. This is some of the strongest work we've seen from the pair and a brilliant introduction to TDTC should they require the exposure. A truly accomplished album which finds Simian Mobile Disco in fine form. 


                      STAFF COMMENTS

                      Matt says: Simian surprise me endlessly by actually making a record I really like! The ethereal mix of haunting choir and SMD's shimmering soundscapes is evocative and cinenmatic indeed. Ace.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Boids
                      2. Caught In A Wave
                      3. We Go
                      4. Gliders
                      5. Hey Sister
                      6. A Perfect Swarm
                      7. Defender
                      8. V Formation
                      9. Murmuration

                      Cloud Nothings

                      Life Without Sound

                        Cloud Nothings are back with ‘Life Without Sound’, the follow up to 2014’s ‘Here And Nowhere Else’, on Wichita Recordings.

                        Lead singer and guitarist Dylan Baldi maintains simple, admirable standards in quality. “A thing I like to do with all of my records is drive around with them,” the 25-year-old Cloud Nothings frontman says. “In high school, I would listen to music for hours like that: just driving through the suburbs of Cleveland. And if it sounds good to me in that context and I can think of high school me listening to it and saying, ‘That’s okay,’ I feel good about the record. This is the one that’s felt best.”

                        ‘Life Without Sound’ is the radiant fourth full length Cloud Nothings have recorded since Baldi began writing and releasing songs on his own under the Cloud Nothings alias in 2008. While its highly acclaimed predecessor, 2014’s ‘Here And Nowhere Else’, came together spontaneously in the little time that touring allowed, ‘Life Without Sound’ took shape under far less frenetic circumstances.

                        For more than a year, Baldi was able to write these songs and flesh out them out with his bandmates - drummer Jayson Gerycz and bassist TJ Duke - before they finally joined producer John Goodmanson (Sleater Kinney, Death Cab For Cutie) at Sonic Ranch in El Paso, Texas for three weeks in March of 2016. The result is Baldi’s most polished and considered work to date, an album that speaks to his evolving gift with melody while also betraying the sort of perspective that time provides.

                        STAFF COMMENTS

                        Barry says: I used to listen to quite a lot of skate-punk and hardcore in my youth, whilst this is definitely not that, it has a similar sort of Loud-less loud-loud vibe going on. 'Modern Act' is a perfectly balanced slice of anthemic punky rock, inc. semi-snarled vocals and youthful exhuberance, punctuated with almost clean-cut interludes before breaking forth into another bombastic energetic exaltation. Peppered with moments of pure energetic brilliance, and bulked out with even more moments of bracing and dynamic expertise.

                        Owen, the acclaimed solo musical guise of singer / songwriter / multi-instrumentalist Mike Kinsella, has made an astonishing leap forward with ‘The King Of Whys’, the first work in his two decade-plus career to be made entirely outside of the greater Chicagoland area.

                        Produced by S. Carey over 18 days last winter at April Base Studios in Eau Claire, WI, the album is Owen’s most inspired and evocative thus far, interpolating a group dynamic into what has long been an intensely intimate sound.

                        Songs like ‘The Desperate Act’ and ‘Sleep Is A Myth’ remain spare but with a distinctly outward shift in scope, their open-armed sonic range a perfect foil to Kinsella’s evocative explorations of marriage, melancholia and modern middle age.

                        Fraught with hurt and wry humour, ‘The King Of Whys’ is a portrait of a restless artist grappling with doubt and ghosts of the past but searching for meaning through candour, creativity and an ardent need for emotional release.

                        TRACK LISTING

                        Empty Bottle
                        The Desperate Act
                        Settled Down
                        Lovers Come And Go
                        Tourniquet
                        A Burning Soul
                        Saltwater
                        An Island
                        Sleep Is A Myth
                        Lost

                        The band continue to ignore the lure of lucre and bright lights and remain steadfastly in Sunderland, opening their own record store in the city’s redundant Tourist Office bringing much heralded impetus to the creative heart of Sunderland and it’s many like-minded souls. Amongst the artist who have supported their venture and played recently are The Vaccines, Franz Ferdinand and James Bay.

                        ‘Decency’ follows 2013’s ‘The Days Run Away’ and sees the band continue their uncanny knack for conjuring up moments of introspective beauty whilst encapsulating the band’s ideals, both socially and politically. The pop suss that flowed through previous releases still reigns but ‘Decency’ embellishes those hooks and melodies creating some of the band’s best work to date.

                        Recorded at the tail end of last summer at Leeds’ Suburban Homes studio with MJ (Hookworms) at the controls, ‘Decency ‘ also sees Futurehead Ross Millard on extra-curricular duty with guitar and vocal artistry making his recording debut as a fully-fledged Heartstring.

                        TRACK LISTING

                        Peterborough Dogs
                        Decency
                        Think Yourself Lucky
                        Save It For Tonight
                        Money
                        Hate Me Like You Used To
                        Berlin Calls
                        Balconette
                        Someday Anna
                        Just Not In Love
                        Not For Pleasure
                        Knife In My Back

                        Girlpool

                        Before The World Was Big

                          Born and raised in Los Angeles, Girlpool are a Philadelphia based two piece made up of Cleo Tucker (guitar) and Harmony Tividad (bass). The two met at Los Angeles DIY venue The Smell and quickly grew very close.

                          Their sound is raw, comprised only of a guitar, bass and vocal harmonies. Cleo and Harmony use this stripped-down instrumentation to accentuate their vulnerable and powerful lyrics.

                          For fans of Waxahatchee, First Aid Kit, Breeders, Pixies, Sleater Kinney.

                          “If rebellion had a sound, I imagine it would end up sounding a lot like Girlpool... It’s punk in the best sense of the word: fresh, raw, and uncompromising.” - Stereogum

                          “It’s brilliant.” - The Line Of Best Fit · “Fever-pitch vocals, lo-fidelity guitar, and endless cool” - Pitchfork

                          “A minimalist approach to writing urgent, non-conformist and catchy tunes” - The Independent

                          “An arresting combination” - The Guardian

                          “Armed with just two guitars, the duo reel you in with seriously catchy hooks and achieve more depth with these songs than any drum kit ever could.” - NME

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Ideal World
                          Dear Nora
                          Before The World Was Big
                          Chinatown
                          Cherry Picking
                          Magnifying Glass
                          Crowded Stranger
                          Pretty
                          Emily
                          I Like That You Can See It

                          The bouncy, surf-esque qualities pitch Total Babes a million miles from their Cloud Nothings connections (the bands share the octopus-onamphetamine drumming of Jayson Gerycz), with ‘Heydays’ instantly presenting itself as a beachcombing ode to sweaty summers.

                          Lead by the undulating basslines of Nathan Ward (Smooth Brain / Cruelster) and fleshed out by warped synth work John Elliot (Emeralds / Outer Space), the choruses are a masterclass in indie rock’s ability to shift perceptions - “I only want to be beautiful,” frontman Christopher Brown cries but it’s in their rough edges that Total Babes really shine.

                          For fans of Cloud Nothings, FIDLAR, Wavves and Eagulls.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Blurred Time
                          Heydays
                          Bone Dry Eyes
                          Circling
                          We’ll Come Around
                          Sunny Side
                          Repeat Gold
                          Can I Turn You On

                          Following two acclaimed EPs - ‘Coared’ and ‘SANS’ - as well as a double A-sided single, Wichita are very excited to present the highly anticipated self-titled debut album from Cheatahs.

                          An exploration of the possibilities of modern guitar music. A blend of ecstatic noise, ambient drone and visceral, earsplitting alt rock. Lyrics that touch on the complexities of relationships, nature, the city, memory, dislocation and self-identity. Altogether, their self-titled record displays a giant creative leap from the lo fi fuzz of their first two EPs.

                          Call it shoegaze, call it grunge, call it indie rock, but know that Cheatahs stand head and shoulders above all the other pretenders in terms of both tunes and intensity.

                          The band have been on the road with their friends Metz and more dates will be announced soon. They have previously played with Dinosaur Jr, Fidlar, Wavves, Best Coast, The Cribs, King Tuff and Cloud Nothings, amongst others.

                          For fans of Deerhunter, Swervedriver, My Bloody Valentine, Dinosaur Jr, Teenage Fanclub, Sugar, The Boo Radleys.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          I
                          Geographic
                          Northern Exposure
                          Mission Creep
                          Get Tight
                          The Swan
                          IV
                          Leave To Remain
                          Kenworth
                          Fall
                          Cut The Grass
                          Loon Calls

                          Peggy Sue are far from your average post-folk band; they carefully craft together beautiful harmonies that glide over a sea of delicate guitars and piercing drums to create a coming together of sounds whose power is unlike any other. The songs possess an immense intricacy in their layers and details ensuring the listeners respond to their cinematic quality.

                          In their own words, “‘Choir Of Echoes’ is an album about singing. About losing your voice and finding it again. Voices keeping each other company and voices competing for space. The call and response of the kindest and the cruelest words. Choruses. Duets. Whispers and shouts.”

                          This, the band’s third album for Wichita Recordings, was recorded by Jimmy Robertson (the man who made the ‘Peggy Sue Play The Songs Of Scorpio Rising’ collection), and mixed by John Askew (who also worked with the band on their debut full length, ‘Fossils And Other Phantoms’).

                          TRACK LISTING

                          (Come Back Around)
                          Esme
                          Substitute
                          Figure Of Eight
                          Always Going
                          Just The Night
                          How Heavy The Quiet That Grew Between Your Mouth And Mine
                          Electric Light
                          Longest Day Of The Year Blues
                          Idle
                          And Always Is
                          Two Shots
                          The Errors Of Your Ways

                          ‘Motto’ is the third album by Leeds trio Sky Larkin on Wichita Recordings.

                          Recorded with long-term collaborator, producer John Goodmanson (Girls, Sleater Kinney, Los Campesinos!) in Seattle, ‘Motto’ showcases Sky Larkin’s unshakable ability to conjure immediately satisfying, vibrant indie rock.

                          The album was written for the most part whilst Sky Larkin singer and guitarist Katie Harkin was on the road as a touring member of Wild Beasts, and it captures a typically varied set of themes as its inspiration.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Motto
                          Newsworthy
                          The Loyal Beat
                          Treasury
                          Loom
                          Carve It Out
                          Tarn
                          Frozen Summer
                          Bravo Dodo
                          Overgrown
                          Italics
                          Que Linda (Wake To Applause)

                          ‘Sob Story’ is the second album from Heckmondwike, Yorkshire residing brothers Louis and Will Jones aka Spectrals. The record finds the band back with more confidence than ever.

                          The album was produced at Decibelle in San Francisco by JR White, producer and bassplayer of the band Girls. JR had this to say of the recording sessions and resulting record: “With ‘Sob Story’ Spectrals have come of age. Our sessions found Louis and his writing at its most honest and direct. Our mantra while recording was always ‘make it exciting and cut the fat’. ‘Sob Story’ is the outcome of that and personally I could not be happier with the results.”

                          The album’s songs draw on influences from Louis’ favourite musicians such as Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, and Dave Edmunds, as well as Galaxie 500, Big Star and Slade.

                          Since the release of their debut album, ‘Bad Penny’, Spectrals have toured Europe with Best Coast, Girls, The Cribs, and Real Estate, amongst others.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Let Me Cave In
                          A Heartbeat Behind
                          Karaoke
                          Sob Story
                          Milky Way
                          Friend Zone
                          Limousine
                          Something To Cry About
                          Blue Whatever
                          Keep Your Magic Out Of My House
                          Gentle
                          In A Bad Way

                          The Cribs

                          Payola

                            "Payola" collects together 22 tracks spanning The Cribs career - including unreleased track "Leather Jacket Love Song", the final song the band recorded with Johnny Marr.

                            First Aid Kit

                            The Lion's Roar

                              Swedish sisters First Aid Kit have gone from faraway teenage fans covering Fleet Foxes for fun to recording a blue series 7” of Buffy Sainte-Marie’s ‘Universal Soldier’ with Jack White in his Nashville, TN Third Man studios.

                              This, their second album, was recorded in Spring 2011 in Omaha, Nebraska by Mike Mogis (Bright Eyes, Jenny Lewis, Monsters Of Folk). From the dynamic title track onwards, the sophomore album is a rich and stirring affair that expands upon the keen and sophisticated country tinged pop of their critically acclaimed debut.

                              ‘The Lion’s Roar’ is a full band record, the Girls’ Father Benkt takes the bass, Mattias Bergqvist drums, while Mogis and Nate Walcott of Bright Eyes, and a cast of Omaha-based musicians round out the sound.

                              Album closer ‘King Of The World’ features the Felice Brothers, just passing through town during the session, and local hero Conor Oberst, who sings the last verse.

                              TRACK LISTING

                              1. The Lion’s Roar
                              2. Emmylou
                              3. In The Hearts Of Men
                              4. Blue
                              5. This Old Routine
                              6. To A Poet
                              7. I Found A Way
                              8. Dance To Another Tune
                              9. New Year’s Eve
                              10. King Of The World

                              CD Bonus Track:
                              11. Wolf

                              The Cribs

                              In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull - Limited CD/DVD Edition

                                The fifth album from The Cribs was recorded with Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev etc) and Steve Albini (Nirvana, Pixies, Shellac), as well as at Abbey Road by the band themselves.

                                ‘In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull’ marks a return to their classic threepiece status and heralds another chapter in the upwards trajectory of the Jarman brothers.


                                ‘Bad Penny’ is the debut album from Spectrals aka 21 year old Louis Jones. Mixing ingredients of pop, soul, doo wop, and a garage rock ballad, it sounds vintage but current, while the Yorkshire lilt in his voice (a result of his hometown, Heckmondwike) places him firmly in the UK, rather than Detroit.

                                Inspired by the music he grew up listening to as a child, from the Rolling Stones (the only CD’s his mum ever has in her car) to The Style Council, Elvis Costello and The Ronettes, it’s all “just about love really”.

                                In eleven original songs, not heard on any of Spectrals previous tapes, 7″s or E.P’s, he documents his relationship with his girlfriend, who he has known since school, from the great to the not-so-good. “Love songs are the kind of songs I like” says the guy who once turned Beyonce’s Single Ladies upside down (‘Peppermint’) “‘not all of them are nice, but they’re all feelings I’ve had”. As if he wasn’t attached to these songs enough, Louis recorded nearly all of the instruments on Bad Penny, with his brother, Will Jones, the only other musician on the album, on drums.

                                Recorded with Richard Formby (Wild Beasts, Hood, Telescopes, Spectrum) in early 2011, on Bad Penny, Spectrals’ knack for writing a great tune is more obvious than ever. “I just love these songs” he says “all I’d hope is for people to come away saying, ‘they were 11 ace songs’ or if there’s a a guy or girl getting messed about, that it makes sense to them. I’m not wanting to make out I’m a genius, I hate it when groups do that. People don’t like being talked down to, y’know? This is just songs”.

                                TRACK LISTING

                                1. Get A Grip
                                2. Lockjaw
                                3. You Don't Have To Tell Me
                                4. Big Baby
                                5. Many Happy Returns
                                6. You Can't Live On Love Alone
                                7. Doing Time
                                8. Confetti
                                9. Luck Is There To Be Pushed
                                10. Brain Freeze
                                11. If I Think About The Magic Will It Go Away?

                                First Aid Kit

                                The Big Black & The Blue

                                Prodigious Swedish teenagers Klara (16) and Johanna Söderberg (19), AKA First Aid Kit, have been gathering fans apace throughout 2009 since the release of their “Drunken Trees” EP in February.
                                Spending their formative years drinking from the fountain of American classics – everything from Buffy Sainte-Marie, to the likes of Conor Oberst – it shaped their way with song writing, arrangements and even the use of a second language. Audiences have been falling at their feet, enraptured by their pure, shimmering voices in harmony. Until now they have been rightfully praised for their astonishing cover versions, such as their infamous YouTube phenomenon of Fleet Foxes’ “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song”, but First Aid Kit are now unveiling some remarkable songs of their own. The first flourishes can be heard on this masterly debut album, built around the sweeping majesty and almost telekinetic, intricate weaving of their voices. Sounding like the dreamy and spectral nieces of the Indigo Girls or Michelle Shocked coming in from the campfire to settle at the Stockholm kitchen table, the Söderberg’s distil all of their collective influences and make them their own.

                                TRACK LISTING

                                01. In The Morning
                                02. Hard Believer
                                03. Sailor Song
                                04. Waltz For Richard
                                05. Heavy Storm
                                06. Ghost Town
                                07. Josefin
                                08. A Window Opens
                                09. Winter Is All Over You
                                10. I Met Up With The King
                                11. Wills Of The River

                                A native of Washington, DC and now calling New York City home Lissy Trullie is both the name of the front woman and the band she sings in. In a year being characterised by female fronted electro-pop (with more than a passing eye on the 1980s), Lissy stands out from the crowd with timeless, fuzzy guitar pop that evokes the sound of new-wave, New York in the late 70s and early 80s and has seen her compared to such artists as Chrissie Hynde, Blondie and Television. What also makes Lissy stand out is her unique voice: a rich tenor with a distinct drawl, Lissy's voice is a remarkably arresting instrument and her vocal styling add another dimension to the songs. The band is knitted together by the water tight rhythm section of Josh Elrod's drumming, Ian Fenger's melodic bass lines and Lissy's stabs of rhythm guitar, with lead guitarist Eben D'Amico providing the flourishes. Tracks like "Boy Boy", "She Said" and "Money" are all nuggets of spiky, new wave brilliance, but it's the EP's title track that really marks Lissy out as a song writer par excellence. At the two minute mark "Self-Taught Learner" makes a quite extraordinary turn, breaking into a rousing two minute crescendo of piano and Motown bass with Lissy repeating the lyric 'Oh, I want to die with you'. When the band play the song live, it's a real raised hairs on the back of your neck moment. The EP closes with the band's much revered cover of Hot Chip's "Ready For The Floor", with Lissy's voice sounding at its most beautiful and adding new layers of warmth to the track.

                                As you've probably guessed from the title, this is the second release in the excellent Shred Yr Face singles series, released to coincide with the tour of the same name. This time around, The Bronx give you their take on a classic by another hard-living LA-based group, The Gun Club. Anyone that has heard The Bronx's versions of Neil Young's "Needle And The Damage Done" or Warren Zevon's "Carmelita" knows that a cover from these dudes is always a hot prospect, and they do not disappoint with "She's Like Heroin To Me". Fucked Up present a raw blast through a little known US punk-rock classic from 1977, "Son Of Sam" by Chain Gang. And Rolo Tomassi deliver a typically intense blast or Melt Banana-esque noise in the form "Apocalypso '09".

                                Greg's words on the album: 'Frustrated with new methods and mindset in recording technology I threw up my hands and built my own analog recording studio. My last album, Blood Is Trouble (as well as the first Espers record) was recorded on a 1⁄2" 8 track machine. Eventually I was able to upgrade to an MCI 2" machine and professional recording console which have allowed for better sound quality and greater experimentation. Having a home studio has allowed me to record and produce albums at a comfortable pace consistent with my own levels of inspiration. Key to the album's sound was the acquisition of a vintage Mellotron keyboard. The Mellotron is doubtless my spirit animal in instrument form and is certainly one of the main inspirations behind "The Hive". No other instrument conveys the characteristics of hive insects as well as this legendarily warbley tape based sampler. "The Hive" is primarily a response to the atmosphere of apocalypse that permeates the lives of those who are open and receptive to their environment (not to mention the general global condition). That's not to say the album's entirely about misery and despair. Quite the contrary; I have a good amount of fun trolling through the backwaters of my own dank grey matter (often darkly comical), and each of these songs have multiple meanings, so glean from them what you will. It also contains a cover of Madonna's "Borderline", my first recorded cover since tackling Cat Power's "King Rides By" on "Fire In The Arms Of The Sun". This was meant to be a future Espers release but I got antsy waiting for the next covers record to come about so here it is (after three years of simmering on my mental back burner).'

                                Peter, Bjorn & John

                                Peter, Bjorn & John

                                  Everyone's current favourite Swedes, Peter, Bjorn & John, issue this album in the UK for the very first time, complete with sleeve notes written by the band and five bonus tracks.


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