Autumn is upon us…with music

Autumn is upon us…with music. Thankfully. Yes, us poor souls in the northern hemisphere have autumn descending upon us again and for most parts it has not been an Indian summer variety of autumn. Autumn, however, does coincide with an abundance of releases of musical artists, so that makes it more bearable to stay inside, hear the storm howl and the rain bashing against the windows.

The War on Drugs versus Kurt Vile

Oh my, was I anticipating that new The War On Drugs album. Yes, it is here and I am mildly unimpressed. That notion I would share with only a few fans and only a few critics. I cannot quite put my finger on it. There is so much on that album and then maybe of something too little. I am not given up on it, maybe it will still grow on me. That one song “Over Everything” by Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile has it all though in comparison. There is a freshness and lyricism about it as well as a really hooky melody that is so far missing for me in The War on Drugs latest offering. Courtney and Kurt by the way, a match made in heaven. I am really looking forward to the forthcoming album of this collaboration: “Lotta Sea Lice” (Matador).

The Wedding Present

David Gedge is on tour with The Wedding Present! Besides introducing the brilliant “Going, going…” to both the UK and continental Europe and more dates following worldwide, there will also be tour dates wedged in-between taking cult album “George Best” to the stage – for the very last time! So don’t miss neither opportunity, see here for tour dates. Also looking forward very much to meet David Gedge and bring you back an interview!

The Blog That Celebrates Itself

A special mention in this blog post of Brazilian super blog The Blog That Celebrates Itself. Not only blogging away but releasing an abundance of samplers devoted to new music and new bands covering the finest of bands’ oeuvres. Should you not be acquainted with their brilliant output yet, have a look here.

Lord Youth

Micah Blaichman alias Lord Youth from Queens, NY follows up his self-titled vinyl 10″ EP and a 2 track single with his debut album “Gray Gardens” on BB*Island. A master of his craft, Lord Youth, presents all the colours of modern music on his album and yet, the blue hour is the one that would this album best. Dark and dreamy despite some forays into the uptempo, this is a perfect companion for the coming season and beyond. Much to discover, go ahead.

By the way, Lord Youth will also perform at the Reeperbahnfestival in Hamburg, Germany, a massive musical feast with conferences, art, films and lots of music, very much Germany’s SXSW, if I may so, from the 20th of September till the 23rd of September 2017. Featured country this year: Canada. Bliss!

The Jazz Butcher

Having had the fortune to see Pat Fish (with various members as The Jazz Butcher) repeatedly live, indulging in buying his albums and singles on vinyl and  coveting two interviews in cassette tape (yep!) from that time and heeding the maestro’s recommendations on literature and music (thank you so much for recommending The Blue Aeroplanes and Flann O’Brien – could not do without them), I am very happy to announce that Fire Records will re-release the first four albums  ‘Bath Of Bacon’, ‘A Scandal In Bohemia’, ‘Sex And Travel’ and ‘Distressed Gentlefolk’ in a four CD box labelled “Wasted Years”. No, they were not and will not ever be. Hoping that The Jazz Butcher will grace us with a tour and also perform his latest music.

Martin Carr

Martin Carr is probably know to most as heading The Boo Radleys until 1999 has been doing solo work since then. Three albums he had made so far and the third one (“New Shapes Of Life”) is going to be released by the end of September 2017. Very much looking forward to Martin’s release – the first single “Future Reflections” is already a wonderful indication of what is going to come.

Autumn is upon us...with music

The last album “The Breaks”, also out on Tapete Records, was a fine album but Martin Carr sees it still as part of a life where he was battling depression and far from this world. “New Shapes Of Life” is to reflect the end of that phase and he regards it as the album that truly sounds like himself.

“Future Reflections” is both musically and lyrically upsetting and touching and consoling – all at the same time.

Darto

Gordon De Los Santos, Gregory Flores, Candace Harter and Nicholas Merz are Darto from Seattle and they have been really busy: They released a 7″ with Wand called “Follow Up / Hush” which miraculously manages to incorporate both bands’ sounds convincingly.

Autumn is upon us...with music

Darto are also proud to present their full length album “Human Giving” and the pride of this album is totally justified. Floating would be a suitable word to describe Darto’s music which is hard to label (a good thing!). There is ambient, there is psych, there are glimpse of Americana.

Let members of Darto speak about their album “Human Giving” themselves:

“We didn’t play shows or hardly go to shows for a year and a half so we could write and record the album,” says Darto’s Gordon De Los Santos. “The album comes from the places within us where hope and love exist. Where the focus is not on the self, and where everything is possible. Humans giving themselves to other humans. The power of listening on all fronts. The desired effect is and was to bring hope in some capacity.”

“We are extremely proud of this record. Writing, recording, mixing and mastering was the most intentional musical experience we have had to date. We took a lot of chances on it, and grew exponentially in the process,” says Gregory Flores. “It felt, and feels like we walked through many doors while working on it, and the place we ended up is very similar to the place where we were as young people first deciding to create. A vulnerable first step towards something larger.”

“Human Giving” is out on Aagoo Records.

Indian Summer New Releases

I hope you had a lovely summer so far. Where I am, it was not much of a summer really and we are all waiting for an Indian summer. The nights are already getting quite cool. This is the time to settle down with some nice music (isn’t it always). Time for Indian Summer New Releases.

The brilliant thing about this lack of summer was that the usual slack in new releases was also missing. I am trying to work my way through this huge backlog on this blog that is at the very tailend of part-time occupations I do. But here goes: Give it a listen, enjoy and support the artists of your choice as much as they are there to share their work with you.

The Moles – Tonight’s Music (Fire Records)

Indian Summer New Releases

This friendly and distinguished looking gentleman with a fine selection of books and a great record player AND lamp behind him (yes, I do notice these things) and a ska album on his lap, is indeed a musician himself and an accomplished and quirky one at that.

It is Australian Richard Davies who is part of Cardinal and releases records as The Moles. Quote Richard on The Moles:

“The Moles is a fitting incognito pseudonym synonym nom de guerre pen name make believe disguise cloak for most of the musical ideas I get. The album has accumulated over many years. I recorded in Boston, New York, and Western Massachusetts when ideas and opportunities came along. It is almost like a journal covering 15 years.”

The band’s first album “Tonight’s Music” in 20 years contains 24 (!) fine tracks and I could not describe it better or more enticing than UK magazine Uncut: “As if Syd Barrett had lit out for New Zealand in the 1980s and joined The Chills.”

Psych rock with indie pop gems and personal lyrics and great tunesmithing does not even come close…that will be music for many nights to come…and days…

The Wedding Present – Going, Going… (Scopitones)

Indian Summer New Releases

You will have to wait until September for The Wedding Present’s new album but a) you can pre-order now b) it is not long to go and c) it is so much more than an album.

Judging by the single “Bear” this is The Wedding Present at its best, the bittersweet and joyful, the raw and the melodies and yet, make no mistake, the years in music show…and show many young pups where to go…Expect journeys into new musical territory though as well (and so we should) and done expertly and magically.

And what a fine result it is going to be with musician, sound technician and instrument builder David Hiraga at the mixing desk amongst other fine contributors.

Have a look at The Wedding Present’s site on “Going, Going…” here.

Hologram Teen – Marsangst / Hex These Rules (EP) (Happy Robots Records)

Indian Summer New Releases

Now for some electronic vibes…you may well remember Stereolab. Their keyboard player was Morgane Lhote and she is back as Hologram Teen with a new EP called Marsangst / Hex These Rules.

Hologram Teen might go for electronica and pop but this is no shallow charts fodder – Morgan Lhote herself feels it is like Fabio Frizzi meeting Grandmaster Flash. It could well be an electronic horror movie soundtrack. Let’s just say,  Jarvis Cocker is a fan. There, is that good enough for you?

Her influences are varied and eclectic as you might well guess. How many of these artists do you know?

Yellow Magic Orchestra, Chagrin d’Amour, NehruvianDoom, Maria Bethânia, The Salsoul Orchestra, Acid Washed, Jean Claude Vannier, Chicago, Del The Funky Homosapien, Silver Apples, Steely Dan, Don Armando’s Second Avenue Rhumba Band, Nancy Leticia, Riz Ortolani, and Siouxsie & The Banshees.

The four-track digital EP is available from August 5, 2016 on all major digital stores and streaming services. The 7” single is limited to 300 copies and is distributed worldwide by Cargo Records. It is also available from www.happyrobots.co.uk.

TRACKLIST
1. Marsangst
2. Hex These Rules
3. Scratches en Série
4. Franmaster Glash

 

Brigid Mae Power – Brigid Mae Power (Tompkins Square Records)

Indian Summer New Releases

Heather Woods Broderick mentioned Brigid Mae Power from Galway, Ireland and I have been hooked to Brigid’s music ever since (see here). Accompanied by otherworldly sparse music, she lets THAT voice float, often in surroundings that add to the atmosphere, like churches.

Brigid Mae Power has now released her debut album after several EPs and gets well-deserved praise for it. Musician Peter Broderick worked with Brigid in his studio in Portland, Oregon and supported technically, musically and as Brigid put it above all: Finding her voice, making her comfortable and really helping her to achieve the most.

The self-titled debut is an absolute gem. Its lyrics and music so fragile, so vulnerable and yet so empowering…

Peter Broderick again has just released his album “Partners” where he also does one of Brigid’s songs of her album: Somewhere. Again, absolutely recommendable. This partnership is so much more than just adding up two musicians.

 

Neal Hoffmann – Untrained Hearts (Amphibic Records Ltd)

Indian Summer New Releases

I have come to expect quite a lot from Neal Hoffmann, former Amphibic member from London and now solo artist. (Also see here).  But I suppose I can as the man is a perfectionist and yet his songs never lose any of their warmth. This album Untrained Hearts contains an array of beautifully written and composed songs, presented by Neal in his unmistakeable, assured voice and almost all instruments played himself. Blimey, the rich sound of the album virtually cascades headphone moments on you and then there is the very nice artwork of the album too. And a lyrics booklet. If you are looking for new songwriters, go for Neal Hoffmann’s Untrained Hearts – this is a stunning effort and he is deservedly a little proud of the result. I am sure, to see Neal performing live must be the ticket and makes the songs intensify but this album is as close as you could possibly get. Put your headphones on.