Temples – Colours To Life [Watch]

Back at the beginning of April we briefly covered neo-psychedelic rockers Temples and their rather magnificent single Shelter Song. Martin wrote, “The songs are louder, clearer and chocked full of instantly catchy hooks; unashamedly pulling in retro influences from acid era Byrds to (dare I say it) The Beatles – all brought up to date with some booming, breakbeat-esque drumming.” Now roll on a month and a bit and we can follow that up with their brilliant new single Colours To Life, due out 24th June. Continue reading

Bonobo – The North Borders [Review]

Bonobo The North Borders

It doesn’t feel too long ago now that Black Sands (March 2010) released to a wonderful reception from fans and critics alike and pushed Bonobo even further to success supported by a truly brilliant live set and extensive touring. Now just three years later Simon Green returns with another step forward for his sound and what will in all likelihood be one of the best releases in downtempo electronic music this year. Continue reading

The xx – Angels + New album info [News/New Tracks]

“It’s been a long time since we’ve played you anything new. This song is called Angels, it is the first single from our new album, Coexist. We’ve been playing this song live recently, so it feels good to share with you the version we’ve been working on for so long. We hope you like it. xx The xx” - The xx facebook

The xx are finally back with the follow up to their phenomenally successful 2009 debut xx‘. It’s been a while since we’ve heard any new material, something the band are clearly aware of, and after their runaway success The xx have since fascinated me with how exactly they would follow up their minimalist debut.

What they’ve come up with has neither shocked me, nor disappointed me as Angels delivers the sound we’re so familiar with yet steps up its game in terms of maturity in song writing and production polish. It’s an evolution of the sound in every sense of the word. Still incredibly relevant, it’s The xx through and through; and no fan should be disappointed unless they were yearning for a different direction on album number two. It’s a lot more confident as well with Romy Madley-Crofts beautiful vocals appearing more sure and pronounced than previous material. If anything it’s a little short and is missing any sort of climax. Take it as a preview or taster of things to come when Coexist makes it to record store shelves this September. Whatever the reception, it’s guaranteed to be as cinematic and addictive as xx was back in 2009 while retaining all that make The xx such a force in popular music.

Coexist is set for release on 10th September 2012 and can be pre-ordered via The xx website. There are plenty of places to choose from and pre-orders from iTunes or The xx store come with a download of Angels for you to saturate your eardrums with on the run up to release day.

Coexist tracklisting:

  1. Angels
  2. Chained
  3. Fiction
  4. Try
  5. Reunion
  6. Sunset
  7. Missing
  8. Tides
  9. Unfold
  10. Swept Away
  11. Our Song

Official website
The xx on facebook

Bandcamp Find of the Week – Pickwick

So I suppose my Bandcamp Find of the Week series should technically be renamed Bandcamp Find of the Season. We’ll gloss over the lack of follow ups since that January article, here’s the latest one. I present to you Pickwick.

There’s scant information across the internet on these guys so this is what I do know; there’s six of them, they’re from Seattle, they have a penchant for vintage gear and they love vinyl (men after my own heart there). But what I can tell you from listening to their debut record Myths, interestingly split into three EP’s and released over a period of months, is that they are a great blend of Soul, R&B and Indie rock with shades of blues and the songwriting skills to boot. It’s raw stuff, don’t expect lavish production here. That’s not to say it’s badly produced however, far from it, there’s perfect clarity and it does nothing but accentuate the bands sound, giving each member’s instrument room to breathe and stand out – there are some infectiously catchy melodies here. Most importantly however, it sounds like the band are having fun and this bleeds into their sound freely at all opportunities. Across the record (or three EP’s depending on how you buy it) Pickwick display great skill in creating meaningful songs full of soul. It’s also worth mentioning the interesting presentation and method of releasing three EPs as a full length. The band clearly have a vision and it’s great to see them experimenting with the way they release their music. Each EP comes with it’s own artwork, all stylistically created to compliment each other, it’s a nice idea well executed.

Have a listen over on the Pickwick bandcamp. Note if you want to grab Myths as a complete piece rather than the three EPs via bandcamp, you can purchase it digitally for $8 (USD) or physically for $10 (USD) on their kungfustore here. Highlights include the superb Hacienda Motel (live version below, well worth the watch!) and The Round.

Tracklisting as follows:

Volume 1
1) Hacienda Motel
2) When Rosa Speaks

Volume 2
1) The Round
2) Staged Names

Volume 3
1) Limelight
2) Blackout

Bonobo – Black Sands Gets Remixed

This is exciting news, I’m a big Bonobo fan to the extent I’d say he’s pretty much one of, if not, my favourite artists around. Black Sands released to critical acclaim in March 2010 and was an absolutely fantastic album supported by a superb tour with a live band. Now almost two years later Ninja Tune is releasing a remix album which will also see Simon leave the band behind for the live shows and take to the decks again. I’m looking forward to this one as the list of artists throwing down the remixes is pretty decent.

It’s landing on the 13th of February so not long to get those pre-orders in. There’s a Bonus 5″ vinyl to be snapped up and all physical orders will ship with another bonus CD of remixes. Something for the collector there!

Track listing is as follows:

1. Prelude (Lapalux’s Finger on the Tape Remix)
2. The Keeper (Banks Remix)
3. Kiara (Cosmin TRG Remix)
4. Eyesdown (Floating Points Remix)
5. Eyesdown (ARP 101 Remix)
6. Eyesdown (feat. Andreya Triana & DELS)
7. All In Forms (FaltyDL Remix)
8. Ghost Ship
9. Stay The Same (Mark Pritchard Remix)
10. Eyesdown (Machinedrum Remix)
11. All In Forms (Mike Slott Remix)
12. Stay the Same (Blue Daisy ‘Not Quite the Same’ Remix)
13. Brace Brace
14. Black Sands (Duke Dumont’s ‘Grains Of Sand’ Reconstruction Edit)

You can hear samples and pre-order at Ninja Tune’s release page. Tour dates linked here.