"Slightly ahead of the zeitgeist", eh? Will have to keep living up to that, then. Here's six new bands that have crossed our path like counter-melodic urban foxes of homogenous indie rock.
Dog Is Dead
It's not entirely surprising that these Nottingham under-18s - under-18's! - have a quote from Charlie Waller of the Rumble Strips on their page, as they too have a big enunciating vocalist and staccato brass. This isn't a Young Soul Rebels rip, though, but something more slippery, taking in three part harmonies, sax solos, hints of Vampire Weekend, odd math/post-punk drop-ins (Hot Club de Paris get quoted too) and an assured tightness. They're playing Dot To Dot at the end of May and Summer Sundae in August, and thereafter the world.
Birmingham - it's the new, we dunno, Cardiff or Edinburgh or Newcastle or whichever city it was that only we last noticed a load of interesting new bands, some with vague connections, coming out of. They invoke the increasingly checked name of Elle Milano, we're thinking echoes of #ladsontour Copy Haho to the power of restless math-punk dynamics. Kev BSM was bemoaning this tag recently, but if anyone is a 'Big Scary Monsters band' it's these. Their 'sounds like' description is by Miles Lookimakemusic. SCENE AS FUCK.
The Martial Arts
From Glasgow, and we think we're right in saying they have representation in The Second Hand Marching Band (leader Paul Kelly is also in the mildly better known The Plimptons), this reminds us of our other great failed genre, Neo-New Wave. You can imagine they were mod suits and skinny ties, and you can imagine them playing a part in the East Coast power-pop scene of the early 80s that in a roundabout way birthed REM. Throw in hints of the beat boom, glorious summer melodies, Big Star and the Violent Femmes, and you've got the Knack could have been, or something.
Beaks Of Eagles
Recommended to us by old new friend Dunc Autumn Store, new signings to the increasingly worth watching Odd Box, the Bristol based duo are but six months old but already have full aptitude at a very Americana/West Coast low key harmonically structured pop a la earlier Death Cab or Shins.
Lower than lo-fi bloke with acoustic spilling his, erm, guts out. Seems to be a quick way of getting mentioned round here. Like the recently lauded Benjamin Shaw there's tape noise and the odd drum machine acting as backing, against which Stephen Presumablyhasasurnamebuthe'snotabouttotellusit plays spidery guitar and darkly draws his intimate thoughts a la Lou Barlow's four-track recordings, Daniel Johnston if you really must. He plays Brainlove Festival at Brixton Windmill over the spring bank holiday weekend.
As mentioned a handful of posts ago Wake The President have proved our anti-Midas touch is still in working order by splitting into halves. This half is the rhythm section, Mark Corrigan and Scott Sieczkowski, the jangle largely excised in favour of a folkier infused sound with echoes of the homespun dark charms of My Latest Novel and Frightened Rabbit. A little Phantom Band in their less electroKraut moments too. Scottish, basically, with plenty of promise. As we type they've had 397 profile views. With your help they can make it 500.
Six more to follow in due course.