Wednesday, August 26, 2015

SHOPPING - Straight Lines

Looking back, it seems the only time we've featured SHOPPING on here before is when we put their debut album Consumer Complaints in our top 50 albums of 2013 (number 33, to be precise) We're suckers, you may have noticed, for itchy tripwire post-punk jerkiness, and this from second album Why Choose, out 2nd October through FatCat, is a perfect demonstration, spiralling frantic post-punk guitars of a Slits/Au Pairs stripe holding on for their lives to Gang Of Four-influenced duelling vocal lines and a fragmentary sprint of a rhythm section. All very passive-aggressive on the dancefloor tonight.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Amateur Best - They Know

As Amateur Best, Birmingham-based sometime Chilly Gonazles collaborator Joe Flory makes classic warm electronic pop that suggests there's something going on amid the layers under the glistening synth hooks up top, like a shaken East India Youth attempting to straighten out. The vocals on this single from second album The Gleaners exhibit a quietly soulful melancholia bordering on paranoia, something that knows it could be a lot more obvious and hit-making than this melodically but would rather play in the deep end.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Beach Fatigue - Drunken Grrrls

No, not a Kathleen Hanna/LCD Soundsystem combination, and not a new band either - it's our old friends from down south Wales Heavy Petting Zoo, who've changed their name through growing embarrassment at their old monicker and ahead of a now eponymous self-released debut album. (Yes, they still have the dancer.) Ahead of all that comes this single on 30th October which reinforces the dirt cool they do best - intensifying surf guitars, Nuggets garage darkness, Amy Zachariah​'s strident vocals that mock, stare down and dare you to turn away.

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

TRAAMS - Succulent Thunder Anthem

You know sometimes you can just tell a band has realised what they're good at and acted accordingly? TRAAMS' first album of retro-modern college rock pricked the attention, but the first taste of its follow-up Modern Dancing out... what? 13th November? We might all be dead by then!... anyway, it takes very familiar tropes and makes them into something vital, an urgent charge of shoegaze tremelo, pained deathly new wave-esque sing-shouting and a runaway HGV of a chorus thrust.

Grubs - Windwaker

Grubs are Roxy of Two White Cranes and now Joanna Gruesome, Owen always of Joanna Gruesome and Jake of being Jake, and they make scrappy short bursts of ADHD indie-pop rush that let on more than they seem. Their debut album It Must Be Grubs, out 11th September, is eighteen minutes long, which seems about right.