Posts Tagged ‘London’

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Available as a limited edition 12″ vinyl featuring cover versions of a number of rain–themed songs by the likes of Eurythmics, Ann Peebles, Scott Walker and The Cure. a collection of covers of songs by some of my favourite artists……. and it’s all about the rain. Scott Walker’s ‘It’s Raining Today,’ which I hope will be a fitting tribute.

In 2017, Bella Union boss Simon Raymonde said this of Moss: “Outrageously talented as she is, I still think her best is yet to come.” Offering full affirmation on both fronts, My Name Is Safe in Your Mouth is a haunting snapshot of an intuitive artist seeking new ways to work without safety nets, a quest spurred forwards by her move to Somerset in 2014. As Moss puts it, “Whilst the tentacles of city started to loosen their grip, I began amassing vocals that I felt cut a stark silhouette, and I didn’t want to share with big drums and distorted guitars. I work on a few projects at a time, and the contrast of having disparate musical worlds to step into makes me feel more satisfied. But with this record, I’d gone way deeper than anything merely gratifying.

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As well as my new EP, this beast came out on Friday. The new UNKLE album, The Road pt2, which I’m super excited to be a part of once again. It’s an epic listen, and some great collaborations. Particularly proud of Sun (The).

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London’s Crows are the latest signing to Balley Records (Idles, Heavy Lungs, Lice) and deliver their long-awaited debut album Silver Tongues. Upon emerging in 2015, they quickly solidified their reputation as one of the most exciting new live bands in the UK, putting on a series of wild-eyed, chaotic gigs that left you bruised but, ultimately, bewitched. A single and two EPs reinforced their power, but then there was nothing but a concerning break in service.

The north Londoners’ long awaited debut album ‘Silver Tongues’ reintroduces the four-piece, reminding us why Crows were so exciting when they first bludgeoned their way into our lives. The album’s thrilling first single Chain Of Being is a real statement: a widescreen slice of post-punk that combines heaviness and brooding melody in equal measures.

Their knack for writing lurching, dark, and frenetic pit-openers such as ‘Hang Me High’ and ‘Crawling’. But it’s the second half of the record that shows how they’ve grown in the interim, bringing surprising shifts and dynamic dives into enthralling new territory. Chain Of Being’, a song about relying on religion as a crutch, is bright and expansive; dizzying, soaring, sky-blue atmospherics woven into its uncluttered core. ‘First Light // False Face’ clocks in at nearly eight minutes long and morphs from quiet, vulnerable soundscape punctuated by heaving sighs and frontman James Cox dropping his voice sinisterly low.  This segues seamlessly into album closer ‘Dysphoria’, which draws out Steve Goddard’s droning guitar wall of noise, reinforces it with bassist Jith Amarasinghe and drummer Sam Lister’s precise, crunching rhythm section, and moulds it into something emotional and glowing.

Lyrically, the band set themselves apart from others, too, taking you on a journey through the curious crevices of Cox’s mind. Much of the album was inspired by research wormholes he found himself down, exploring things such as Dante’s Divine Comedy the grinding ‘Empyrean’ and the snakeskin trade, as told from the perspective of a snake ‘Hang Me High’. ‘Crawling’ focuses on Margaret Thatcher’s funeral, building itself into a tightly wound coil that springs apart with the singer’s wails of “Leave her in the ground”

‘Silver Tongues ‘ from our debut album ‘Silver Tongues’ out now on Balley Records

Band Members
James Cox, Steve Goddard, Jith Amara, Sam Lister,

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The twenty-four-year-old London-based musician created a self-care protagonist named “Miss Universe,” the voice of the (fictional) organization We Worry About Your Health (WWAY Health). The 24/7 care program “worries about you so you don’t have to,” as she puts it, subduing symptoms of paranoia, anxiety, and all-around unhappiness.

The storyline that surrounds her zapping, intricate rock songs questions the commodification of mental upkeep. “They’re saying they care, but they don’t really care, and they’re just trying to sell you things that you don’t need,” she tells me.

We have been anticipating the debut album from British singer songwriter Nilüfer Yanya since 2016, when she first made a splash with the idiosyncratic singles “Small Crimes” and “Keep on Calling.” The debut album “Miss Universe” delivers on the promise made by those early releases, with 17 tracks of bright, soulful pop that’s like nothing else you’ll hear this year.

One of the album’s most raw, subdued tracks, “Monsters Under the Bed,” self-awareness and the perceptions of other people butt heads. “They all think I’m not okay / Such a shame, never felt so good,” she sings. Yanya tells me that’s the oldest song on the record. “I don’t know how it ended up on the album. It makes sense, but I didn’t plan to [include it]. I was a different person when I wrote it, and it’s kind of crazy it’s on there. I like that, as well—that the younger me is on the album.” She explains how it was revised for a documentary her sister was making about their grandmother who suffered from mental illness. “I wrote it from her perspective, or was trying to write it with her mind,” Yanya says.

Nilüfer Yanya’s debut album, Miss Universe, is out March 22.

Modern Nature – the name taken from the title of Derek Jarman’s garden diaries – is the new project of Jack Cooper, ex of Ultimate Painting / Mazes and Will Young of Beak featuring Aaron Neveu of Woods and Sunwatchers’ Jeff Tobias on saxophone. Their debut EP, titled “Nature”, will be released 22nd March 2019.

As Jack Cooper explains: “The EP is based around a song called ‘Nature’ so ‘Supernature’ is a different perspective on the EP’s title track, but taken to another conclusion. It’s our most recent recording and there seems to be some sense in people hearing that first. ‘Nature’ is our take on that propulsive rhythm of A Sailor’s Life-era Fairport Convention but ‘Supernature’ is something else entirely. The band is so new, it’s hard to say who’s in and who isn’t. At the moment it’s myself and Will Young (Beak) with Aaron Neveu on drums (Woods/Herbcraft) Rupert Gillett on cello and then Jeff Tobias on saxophone (Sunwatchers). 

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The band started as a vehicle for a wider project that Will and I spent the year putting together so it feels very exciting to be an actual band now. Every song we record or musician we gain, another door seems to open on a route that’s worth pursuing.”

The debut EP by Modern Nature is available now

Though she’d been writing songs in her head since she was six, and on the guitar since she was 12, it took a long time for Nilüfer Yanya to work up the courage to show anyone her music. “I knew I wanted to sing, but the idea of actually having to do it was really horrifying,” says the 23-year-old. When she was finally persuaded to do so, by a music teacher in West London where she grew up, she says “it was horrible. I loved it”.

At 18, Nilüfer – who is of Turkish-Irish-Bajan heritage – uploaded a few demos to SoundCloud. Though she’s preternaturally shy, her music – which uniquely blends elements of soul and jazz into intimate pop songs with electronic flourishes and a newly expressed grungy guitar sound – isn’t. And it didn’t take long for it to catch people’s attention. She signed with independent New York label ATO, following three EPs on esteemed london indie label Blue Flowers, and earned a place on the BBC Sound of 2018 longlist. She also supported the likes of The xx, Interpol, Broken Social Scene and Mitski on tour.

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Now, Nilüfer is ready to release her debut album, Miss Universe. Though she recorded much of it in the same remote Cornwall studio she used to jam in as a much younger person, it is bigger and more ambitious than anything she has done before. ‘Angels’, with its muted, harmonic riffs, channels ideas “of paranoid thoughts and anxiety” – a theme that runs through the album, not least in its conceptual spoken word interludes which emanate from a fictional health management company WWAY HEALTH TM. “You sign up, and you pay a fee,” explains Nilüfer of the automated messages, which are littered through the album and are narrated by the titular Miss Universe. “They sort out all of your dietary requirements, and then they move onto medication, and then maybe you can get a better organ or something… and then suddenly it starts to get a bit weird. You’re giving them more of you and to what end?”

Releases March 22nd, 2019
Nilüfer Yanya - Miss Universe

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The cult London Psychedelic band have quite a history. Founded by Dave Mclean and Paul Lake in 1987, the band are veterans of the alternative Manchester label “Imaginary” and cassette only label “Acid Tapes”; they helped pioneer the late 1980’s neo-psychedelic boom.

The Chemistry Set counted Factory Records boss Tony Wilson amongst their legion of fans (they appeared on his TV show). They also received regular airplay on the legendary John Peel’s Radio Oneshow (Peel even went so far as to sending the band a hand-written fan letter!). The Chemistry Set have been championed by mainstream media such as The Sunday Times, Mojo, Q, Shindig, Record Collector, Classic Rock, BBC 6 Music and Planet Rock as well as underground fanzines like Bucketful of Brains and Freakbeat in the UK, The Bob in the USA, Ruta 66 in Spain and Sound Effects in Sweden).

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Releases March 8th, 2019

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London four-piece Honey Lung have consistently churned out hyper-melodic rock with heart and bite, and it’s not a stretch to say they’re writing fiery, tender rock better than any young band out there today. Memory, their recent 12-inch release via Brooklyn’s Kanine Records, consists of eight well-crafted songs—half of them singles and half demos—each with mind-bogglingly dynamic hooks and punchy riffs.

Honey Lung was coined upon a hazy writing session at Jamie’s house as they were listening to Jesus & The Mary Chain ‘Just Like Honey’. You’ll hear a lot of 90’s grunge, shoegaze, and alternative rock influence (Radiohead, The Smashing Pumpkins and Dinosaur Jr) in their sound as the band got into this style of music though hearing it in their parents cars. Like many young new bands, the 90’s spoke to them as it was a time they didn’t really remember, but felt a connection to.

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With a do-it-yourself attitude Honey Lung wll do things on their own terms often creating to their own desires and interests. Drawing influence from Car Seat Headrest, Sparklehorse, Elliot Smith and The Brian Jonestown Massacre, the band used their charity shop guitars and a modest home recording set-up to create songs. Memory is a collection of singles, and their first ever vinyl release out on Kanine Records February 1st, 2019.

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Anteros take their name from the Greek god of requited love, the perfect moniker for a band whose buzzy indie-pop is this easy to fall for. Coming up at a time when guitar music is once again in rude health from Shame and IDLES to Wolf Alice, this London-based four-piece boast influences that range from Blondie to Brandon Flowers, Motown to disco. “We sound like tequila mixed with bananas and a bit of cinnamon”, jokes frontwoman Laura Hayden, a half-Spanish, half-British tour de force and former MTV Spain VJ who helms this self-proclaimed “travelling circus” alongside Harry Balazs, Josh Rumble and Jackson Couzens. The last few years have seen this young outfit hit the road with the likes of Two Door Cinema Club and White Lies, open Glastonbury’s Other Stage, and gain major radio support, garnering the approval of tastemakers including Annie Mac and Phil Taggart. In print, they’ve also been hotly tipped by the Guardian and the Independent, with alt-rock bible DIY noting that they “turn sorrow into something you can dance to”. And, as they prepare to release their debut album, it’s easy to see why so many are already under their spell.

In a time of social media fakery and inauthentic artists, Anteros aren’t pretending to be anything they’re not. ‘We’re definitely not trying to be cool,” says Balazs, a BRIT school graduate who discovered his tribe in Anteros following a stint as a session drummer. Their upcoming debut album When We Land is a collection of sparky, often bittersweet musings on twentysomething life – not least Call Your Mother, a song about the pressures of youth whose relentless, anthemic bassline and jangly, Cure-ish momentum meld with Hayden’s dreamy, Debbie Harry-esque vocals. For bassist Rumble, the line “lightweight young hearts waiting to break” sums up his own relationship with growing up. Elsewhere, other tales come cloaked in a blitzkrieg of grungey electro-pop (Afterglow), at other times via introspective folk-rock earworms (Ordinary Girl). What unites them is a rich sonic palette and poetic lyrics that celebrate the highs and lows of being young in 2018. “My favourite lyric on the album is ‘you don’t know how close you were to being number one [from Ordinary Girl]’”, explains Couzens, a former guitar tech who cut his teeth working with Manchester heavyweights Blossoms. “At that point in the song it kind of lifts up as it goes from minor into major. For us, it represents getting knocked back but coming back and trying harder the next time”.

Indeed, while Anteros have had an impressive few years (Balazs joined in 2015 and Couzens in 2016, while the others had been working on material for some time before) they have, of course, faced the challenges of post-adolescence, and then some. The new band lifestyle has of course involved much time on the road while travelling in cramped vans, and trying to stay true to themselves has at times seemed like a battle in a polished and Instagram-ready age, something Hayden understands better than most having worked as a presenter and model. Besides, they’ve been keen not to be seen as a continuation on a theme. “I do think this is something that happens more with female-led projects, where you get compared to stuff a lot, or put up against other bands,” she explains. “We’re trying to just see it as us, not wanting to be part of a fad, but making stuff that will find its own place”.

Since signing with Distiller last year, Anteros have only become more secure in their identity as a group, thanks in part to an “amazing” period recording at the label’s in-house studio in Bath alongside Mercury-winning producer Charlie Andrew (Alt-J, Bloc Party, Marika Hackman). The version of Anteros we meet on When We Land is confident without feeling cocky, retro while also sounding current. There are even dancefloor-ready moments in the mix, with Hayden describing heady, Moloko-ish single Wrong Side as “disco with a side of rock”, and Rumble – who has experimented with synth bass on the record – adding that it’s “disco recorded in a Motown style … [that period] was gritty sonically”. It seems no coincidence, too, that the coyly funky Ring Ring shares a title with an ABBA song. A highlight for Hayden is fan favourite Breakfast, which “feels more grown up, it was a writing demo when we released it, so this was a chance to do it properly”. Couzens, meanwhile, is a fan of Honey, an “upbeat, dancey, sassy” track that gives way to a darker meditation about a toxic relationship. Similarly, Drive On, inspired by Hayden’s time in LA and realising the limitations of the “Hollywood dream” feels like a fresh coda to the edgy Americana of Hot Fuss.

Whether during their electric live shows or on record, Anteros strike the perfect balance of deeper themes and varied grooves you can’t help but move to. And it seems they have no plans to change their eclectic ways any time soon. “We don’t want to get too comfortable”, adds Hayden with a laugh. “Otherwise it would get boring. We want to make our own space”. And, as they continue to craft it with class, we’re sure to be lending Anteros our hearts as well as our ears.