Tycho – Division [Listen]

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I love those mornings when you wake up, hazily grab your phone (usually to silence the incessant drone of the alarm), catch up on your RSS/Facebook/Twitter etc and are greeted by a brand new track by one of your favourite artists. A nice morale boost to the day.

So this morning I did just that and by the time I’d grabbed my keys and was on my way out the door I’d already listened to Tycho’s new track five or six times and was feeling all the more chipper as a result.

I love where Scott is taking Tycho; as familiar as ever but brighter, bolder and with increasing confidence. It feels more organic, more expansive and crackles with energy. Maybe that’s to be expected with his move away from solo artist, embracing the band and touring Awake extensively for two years. I’m excited.

Check it out.

The new as yet untitled album is due out on Ghostly International in 2016.

If you’re in the US you can catch Tycho at one of the remaining 2016 shows.

TYCHO 2016 TOUR DATES

JUL 02 – Chicago, IL – Mamby on the Beach
SEP 17 – Morrison, CO – Red Rocks Amphitheatre (w/ Lotus, El Ten Eleven)
SEP 22-24 – Thornville, OH – Resonance Music & Arts Festival
SEP 24-25 – St. Louis, MO – Murmuration Festival
OCT 15-16 – San Francisco, CA – Treasure Island Music Festival

Drenge – Face Like a Skull [Listen]

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It’s not often that a music recommendation comes to me by way of the MP for West Bromwich East, in fact, it has never happened before.

In his resignation letter, written to the party leader Ed Miliband, Labour MP Tom Watson stated:

“John Humphrys asked me why you were not at Glastonbury this weekend. I said Labour leaders can’t be seen standing in muddy fields listening to bands. And then I thought how terribly sad that this is true. So: be that great Labour leader that you can be, but try to have a real life too. And if you want to see an awesome band, I recommend Drenge.”

I couldn’t resist investigating this recommendation further and was pleased to discover that Drenge are in fact a rather good band, producing an excellent strain of garage rock straight out of Sheffield in the UK. Consisting of brothers Eoin Loveless and Rory Loveless, Drenge have a brilliantly chaotic but highly melodic sound that is utterly infectious.

The group’s latest, riotous single Face Like a Skull pulls in it’s influences from a wide range of sources; from the sounds of groups like The Vines, The Black Keys and Nirvana to the lyrical style of fellow Sheffield band Arctic Monkeys. A barrage of riffs and youthful exuberance flow throughout the track and the production is pitched perfectly to capture the gritty basement-like sound of the group.

Listen to Face Like a Skull below:

The acerbic nature of the sound runs through all the output of the band so far. Eoin’s baritone vocals perfectly complement his snarling guitar and Rory’s powerhouse drumming. The previous single Backwaters is a perfect example of this — introducing a blues rock sound to the mix.

Listen to Backwaters below:

Drenge release their self titled debut album on 19th August; it will be interesting to see if the parliamentary endorsement ends up being good for the band, or whether it becomes a bit of a curse for them. As a music lover, I don’t care — I’ll take my recommendations from anywhere that I can get them.

For more information see the groups facebook page.

Kratos Himself – A Town Called Imaginarium EP [Listen]

Kratos Himself - A Town Called Imaginarium

Toward the end of last month Kratos Himself dropped his new EP A Town Called Imaginarium. Days later I stumble upon it on another enlightening bandcamp weekly and before I know it, it’s found a permanent place on my computers hard drive.

Satisfying my eardrums immensely for the last week, the Dutch downtempo wizard has released a fine slice of electronic music which encompasses a slight world music vibe, warm bass, chilled beats and some organic and delicate production. It’s by the numbers, but when the numbers sound this good there’s nothing to complain about. Kratos Himself, or Jethro Hopmans as he is otherwise known, has caught my attention and has me positively salivating for a full length of this calibre.

You can pick up A Town Called Imaginarium for ‘buy now or name your price’ over at bandcamp.

1. Imaginarium (03:57)
2. Remember (04:54)
3. Ayahuasca (04:38)
4. Lucid (05:31)
5. This Town (04:08)
6. Don’t Call Me (06:02)
7. Till We Meet Again (05:16)

Polytype – Basic//Complex [Review]

Polytype - Basic//Complex

Basic//Complex is a surprise, not to discredit Polytype whatsoever, but this is a deep and rewarding album that manages to pluck ideas from various genres and meld a wonderful, warm yet precise sound that works so well you might not have seen it coming and may be left in your playlist for weeks to come. Continue reading

Sigur Rós – Kveikur [Review]

“We have arrived at Rotorua”

Sigur RósI first learned about the Icelandic band Sigur Rós in 2008. It had just stopped raining and I was sitting outside my tent at the Lowlands Festival waiting for some sun. My tent was located close to one of the stages and I could hear this music coming from there that suited the weather and festival feeling perfectly. And if it wasn’t the music, I would at least have noticed the crowd which exploded in a deafening applause every 15 minutes or so. Even though I was as close to the stage as the bird flies, actually getting there would have cost me at least 45 minutes, so I decided to stay. And that is how I enjoyed the music of Sigur Rós at what would later be known as the most legendary concert at Lowlands ever. Continue reading

Fuck Buttons announce new album Slow Focus, due out 22nd July [News]

Fuck Buttons

Fuck Buttons are finally back with a new album. Out 22nd of July in the UK (23rd for the US) the new record is titled Slow Focus and follows the brilliant 2009 release Tarot Sport; a wonderful building wall of distortion, pounding rhythms and blissful electronics that was backed by one of the greatest live experiences I have ever had. They’ve had a few exciting years culminating in tracks being used at the recent Olympics opening ceremony.

This time around pitchfork reports that Slow Focus will be a self produced effort released via ATP Recordings. Debut Street Horrrsing was produced by Mogwai guitarist John Cummings and Tarot Sport by Andrew Weatherall.

Slow Focus comes in at just 7 tracks so expect some epic pieces as before.

01 Brainfreeze
02 Year of the Dog
03 The Red Wing
04 Sentients
05 Prince’s Prize
06 Stalker
07 Hidden XS

We’ll update as soon as any tracks or audio previews become available.

Source: pitchfork.com

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

Gold Panda – Brazil [Listen]

Gold Panda

Finally here it is! Without further ado I present you with Brazil, the first single from Gold Panda’s upcoming album Half Of Where You Live. After January’s Trust EP left many salivating for the expected full-length follow up to 2010’s brilliant Lucky Shiner we finally have something to sink our teeth into and a date to pencil into the calendars for that very follow up.

Brazil is hypnotic, full of detail and a joy to listen to. Without a doubt Gold Panda through and through and while not a huge leap from previous material, that’s fine by me. Not many artists have that perfect balance between catchy songwriting and pure experimental sounding electronic bliss. If the album follows suit, fan’s will have nothing to worry about and it’ll be another wonderful record from one of Britain’s current finest electronic musicians.

Pre-order Half Of Where You Live over on the Wichita Recordings website

Additionally there’s a string of live dates coming up, I’ve been before myself and it’s well worth a look in. more details over on the Gold Panda website.

Junip – Your Life, Your Call [Watch]

Junip

Junip have released another music video from the upcoming self-titled Junip – follow up to 2010’s debut full length Fields. It might just take the crown for being the creepiest music video I have seen in a long time. Continue reading

Temples – Shelter Song [Listen]

Temples

I’m a great fan of new takes on older music styles; recently I’ve been enjoying the resurgence in popularity of the neo-psychedelic sound, spearheaded by the success of groups like Tame Impala and The Amorphous Androgynous. Temples are a band that have recently caught our attention – since then, the single Shelter Song and its flipside Prisms have been on heavy rotation here at Universal Wax towers. Continue reading