Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Slow Down Things Ain't Gonna Be Easy

Another band that managed to come out with a great first album but then split up is The Wildbirds. The Kings Of Leon references were heard as soon as the southern swagger and lead singer's Nicholas Stewart's drawl came blasting through the stereo. That's where the reference stops though as The Wildbirds were more than a southern rock sounding band. They managed to vary their sound throughout the album and show us that there was more to the band than just the singles. Releasing only 1 album Golden Daze it caught everyone's attention but the original line-up split in 2008 after a short tour. Then in February 2010 it was announced that they had reformed, minus 3 of the original members, and in July 2010 they issued the Sunshine Blues EP. Get ready to move:



Unfortunately there aren't many videos for the band but definitely check out the album Golden Daze and new EP Sunshine Blues. Something to get your toes tapping and butt shaking...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Whiter Shade Of Pale

Another band from Austin, TX that deserves your attention are The Black Angels. Deeply rooted in psychedelic rock they have established themselves as a band at the forefront of the new psychedelic movement. The band's name comes from The Velvet Underground song "The Black Angel's Death Song", which is not their only connection to the band as their logo contains an image of Velvet's vocalist, Nico. Black Angels have their own arts & music festival, Austin Psych Fest which has featured The Raveonettes, The Warlocks, Dead Meadow and A Place To Bury Strangers to name a few. They have 3 releases to date Passover, Directions To See A Ghost and their newest release Phosphene Dream. Their 3rd album harkens back to a 60's influenced sound that is more pop than psychedelic and is quite honestly a refreshing take that shows the band as more than one dimensional. Fly through the sonic wilderness:

"First Vietnamese War"

"Black Grease"

"Bloodhounds On My Trail"

"Prodigal Son"

"You In Colour"



Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Strange And Beautiful

Super Furrry Animals are a group of musicians from Wales. They have an eclectic sound that's infectious and fun. From their beginnings to now they have continued to improve on an already amazing cannon of work. Going in every which direction with their sound it is something that evolves with each release. Lead singer Gruff Rhys has released a few solo albums Yr Atal Genhedlaeth & Candylion along the way while still maintaining a steady output with the band. They have 9 studio albums to date Fuzzy Logic, Radiator, Guerilla, Mwng, Rings Around The World, Phantom Power, Love Kraft, Hey Venus! and Dark Days/Light Years. Paul McCartney commissioned them to remix unreleased Beatles tracks as part of the Liverpool Sound Collage project. He then returned the favour on "Receptacle For The Respectable" by contributing a "carrot & celery rhythm track". The band's drummer Dafydd Ieuan has also joined with actor Rhys Ifans (original lead singer for SFA) to form The Peth. Along with all of that Gruff has formed Neon Neon with Boombip and released "Stainless Style" in 2007. A busy group with no shortage of music for the masses. Take a trip with them:

"Something 4 The Weekend"

"God! Show Me Magic"

"The Man Don't Give A Fuck"


"Northern Lites"

"Ymaelodi Ar Ymylon"

"Juxtaposed With U"

"(Drawing) Rings Around The World"

"Golden Retriever"

"Hello Sunshine"

"Lazer Beam"

"Hometown Unicorn"

"The Very Best Of Neil Diamond"

Gruff Rhys - "Candylion"

The Peth - "Shoot On Sight"

Neon Neon - "I Lust U"

Friday, September 17, 2010

Only In Dreams

Mercury Rev has been around for some time and flown under the radar but are still releasing albums as good as the day they started. Changing their sound throughout the years with Jonathon Donahue taking over lead vocal duties from David Baker who left after their second album. They have ties to The Flaming Lips as well in that Jonathon Donahue joined the band as a second guitarist and David Friddmann (bassist for Mercury Rev) has produced every Flaming Lips album except Transmissions From The Satellite Heart. They have 7 albums to date Yerself Is Steam, Boces, See You On The Other Side, Deserter's Songs, All Is Dream, The Secret Migration and Snowflake Midnight with 1 instrumental album Strange Attractor given away as a free download. Instantly recognizable for Jonathon Donahue's voice they have a way of capturing your attention with their music while Jonathon lulls your senses. In another world:

"Chasing A Bee"

"Goddess On A Highway"

"Opus 40"

"In A Funny Way"

Delve deeper into their catalogue to find some hidden gems. I recommend listening to All Is Dream in the fall or winter for the optimum listening experience. It will transport you, are you ready for the trip?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A Storm On The Horizon

Today I decided to group 2 bands together merely by name alone. They don't share a lot in common musically other than a dark tone to their music. First up is I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness from Austin, TX. Now don't let the name fool you into thinking this is emo or anything. They owe more to The Cure and other brooding 80's bands then to say My Chemical Romance. They have only released 1 album Fear Is On Our Side and 1 EP I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness. Slip on in the darkness is fine:

"The Owl"

"According To Plan"

"Last Ride Together"

Next is Darker My Love from Los Angeles, CA. They were formed by Tim Presley (vocals/guitar) who does most of the bands imagery as he is a visual artist and Andy Granelli (drums) both formerly of the band The Nerve Agents. They have 3 albums to date including Darker My Love, 2 and their newest release Alive As You Are. Their first 2 albums definitely had a moodier vibe with their 2nd starting to come out of the shadows a bit more but their latest is a bit of a different sound for them. Very mellow and leaning more towards the acoustic than the sonic blasts. Get a feel:

"Helium Heels"

"Summer Is Here"

"Two Ways Out"

"Talking Words"

2 great bands that each deliver something new and exciting with each release. I Love You...are in the studio working on their follow up so I'm eager to see what their second album holds. Something for the dark side in all of us...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

An Affair To Remember

Well where to start with The May Cause a band from Vancouver, BC via Calgary, AB. To talk about The May Cause one cannot forget their humble beginnings as Calgary based band bluechild. They had many incarnations as bluechild but the core members were Curt Van Woerkom (vocalist) and Ryan Rosso (guitar). Later to be joined by Eric Lowerison (drums) who added a bit more punch coming from a metal background. Bluechild's live shows were always a visual treat and those that remember the 421 Meredith Rd shows will know what they stood for.

They have lost members along the way but gained in Enrique Balana (bass, keys) an excellent musician who adds his own style to an already diverse sound. Thus they were completed and The May Cause came to be. Already as The May Cause they have done a lot in their short time together as a new band with an offering of videos and live shows becoming more frequent.

They self produced and released a self titled EP recently which is drawing attention to them in an over crowded music scene in Vancouver. The EP starts off with "Strange Little Man" a punchy number accentuated with some biting lyrics and driving bassline. Next up is "Fuck You" that starts off tender but then ups the ante into a catchy pop gem. "I Rode My Bike For This" sounds like early Disintegrations era-Cure with it's droning guitar and haunting vocals. The 4th track "Something Else" has a 50's era rock n' roll vibe to the music and is noticeably a different track than the rest of the EP. Following one great song with another is what I think may be the best track on the album (not discounting any of the other tracks) "Don't Irritate The Bees" due to it's otherworldly Radiohead-esque build up that will have you coming back for more every time. The vocals are sung with such feeling that you can't help but feel a stir of emotions when the song ends and you're left wanting. Final track is "Cancun Discoteque" which is a dancey number driven by the pulsing drums and guitar. The song is an excellent way to sum up an EP which screams at you to get off your ass and dance.

Overall one can't help but be curious as to what future holds for The May Cause. Here's hoping that they continue to push the envelope of their music by not accepting any less than the perfection that they have only began to hint at. So in closing this is a band that deserves and demands your attention. A band that offers you something rewarding for your devotion. A band that will continue to draw you in then spit you out in a warm, loving embrace of melodies and whispered lullabies. The May Cause for lack of a better term may cause euphoria, bliss, sing-a-longs, tears of joy and dance parties...Those don't seem like bad things now do they?

Check out their Myspace for music:

Check out their Youtube Channel for videos:

Check out their website for merch and other assorted goodies:

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Can You Feel It Coming...

Soulsavers (also known as The Soulsavers Soundsystem) are an English remix and production team consisting of Rich Machin and Ian Glover. They have released 3 albums Tough Guys Don't Dance, It's Not How Far You Fall, It's The Way You Land and Broken. Mark Lanegan (of Screaming Trees, Queens Of The Stone Age, The Gutter Twins) has served as the main vocalist on their last 2 albums singing 8 out of the 10 songs on It's Not How Far You Fall... their newest release features guest vocals from Jason Pierce (Spiritualized), Richard Hawley and Mike Patton (Faith No More). A very interesting project in that the songs all have a gospel, rock, soul and country mix that works well with Mark Lanegan's well worn voice. Very uplifting music for any occasion. Also to note is Mark Lanegan's albums with former Belle and Sebastian singer Isobel Campbell Ballad Of The Broken Seas, Sunday At Devil Dirt and Hawk. Also a great collaboration that seems to be tailored for Mark's gruff voice. Haunting and beautiful the combination of Isobel and Mark's voices blends so well that they have continued making albums after making a one off debut. Have a listen through at some of the different sounds:

Soulsavers - "Precious Time"

Soulsavers - "Revival"

Soulsavers - "Pharaoh's Chariot (featuring Jason Pierce)"

Soulsavers - "Kingdoms of Rain"

Soulsavers - "No Expectations"

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - "Ramblin' Man"

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - "Revolver"

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - "Who Built The Road"

Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - "Come Undone"

All great artists who are worth checking out in their various projects. Hope to keep hearing all the great music they continue to put out.

Thanks for tuning in...

Monday, September 6, 2010

People Come On

A great band from Brooklyn via Cincinnati, Ohio go by the name of The National. They have a very unique sound due to lead singer Matt Berninger's voice and lyrics. A refreshing take on americana done by a band that knows how to do it well. Their lyrics are a central part of the songs and require extra attention for the small bits that you might miss like "When you're out with the cunts, You can break what you have, but the rest of it's mine" from "Looking For Astronauts" or "I'm a perfect piece of ass, Like every Californian" from "All The Wine". They have 5 albums under their belt including The National, Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers, Alligator, Boxer and High Violet. One of those bands that will only get better as time goes on and they release more music. Have a peek:


"Lit Up"

"Daughters Of The Soho Riots"

"Fake Empire"

"Mistaken For Strangers"

"Apartment Story"

"Bloodbuzz Ohio"

So listen, love and always share...

Friday, September 3, 2010

I Come From The Land Down Under

Another great band are The Veils. Not widely known but still a band worth your time. Lead singer Finn Andrews has such an incredible voice it can move you in so many ways. He has such a passion and urgency in his voice that beckons you in. They recorded their first album The Runaway Found with ex-Suede guitarist Bernard Butler which after going through a handful of producers finally was released after 4 years. The original line up split after that and Finn Andrews headed back to New Zealand for a while and recruited a new line up of musicians. Their second album Nux Vomica was featured on many year end best of lists in 2006. Their newest album is Sun Gangs and was released in April 2009. They definitely leave you wanting more every time you listen to a song and here's hoping they are gearing up for another album soon. Breathe in the beauty:


"The Tide That Left And Never Came Back"

"The Wild Son"

"Advice For Young Mothers To Be"


"The Letter"

"Begin Again"

"Three Sisters"

"It Hits Deep"

Follow the sounds down, down, down...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

From The Ground Up

An amazing band that hail from the US are Grandaddy who have been overlooked for a long time. They broke up which is truly a shame but not before releasing some of the most bittersweet songs about robots you will ever hear. Not that every song is about robots but they play a part along with nature. They all also share a mutual love of skateboarding. Great music for the summer and fall, you can't help but fall in love with the band. They released 4 studio albums Under The Western Freeway, The Sophtware Slump, Sumday and Just Like The Fambly Cat. They also had a handful of EP's & compilations including Concrete Dunes which was released without the band's permission. Lead singer Jason Lytle released a solo album Yours Truly, The Commuter after Grandaddy's demise and has gone on to form Admiral Radley with drummer Aaron Burtch. Fall in love all over again for the first time:

"Summer Here Kids"

"AM 180"

"The Crystal Lake"

"He's Simple, He's Dumb, He's The Pilot"

"Now It's On"

"El Caminos In The West"

"The Warming Sun"

"Nature Anthem"

"Elevate Myself"

"Where I'm Anymore"

Admiral Radley - "I Heart California"

Jason Lytle - "Yours Truly, The Commuter"

Summer may be almost over but that doesn't mean the music that reminds you of it is...