REVIEWS

Record Review: Beatrice Dillon (ENG) – Workaround (PAN)

They say that time flies when your having fun. Well, how fast can 41 minutes go? Give the amazingly satisfying Workaround, the new album by London experimental electronic artist and producer Beatrice Dillon a spin and find out. Thrilling in its depth of ideas and its unique interpretive take on a multitude of genres and […]

Record Review: Newks (ENG) – Credence EP (Urban Kickz Recordings)

Last week Plymouth based techno producer Matt Holberton aka Newks released his new EP Credence, a work of both smouldering restraint and controlled intensity. It’s arguably his most functionally focused and disciplined in form since his return to the techno fold in 2018 after a 15 year absence.  It boasts four hard wired tracks possessing […]

Record Review: Oma Nata (POR) – Everything (Discotexas)

Enigmatic Portuguese electronic producer Oma Nata moves into minimal and downtempo jazz infused deep house territory on Everything, his stylish and finely calibrated new three track EP for Lisbon label Discotexas. With its depth of gravity and ready atmosphere, its a cohesive and confident affair and an impressive follow up to his brief yet adventurously […]

Record Review: Elias (Ger) – Turning Point EP (Hayes Collective)

Berlin based techno producer Elias recently released his new extended player Turning Point via Lisbon’s Hayes Collective. It boasts six originals of purposeful dub infused techno that is, and at times simultaneously, compact and direct and expansive and nuanced. It’s a feat achieved through the German’s ability to not only establish and maintain the appropriate […]

Record Review: Rick Wade (USA) – In Mah Mind EP (Shall Not Fade)

Detroit Deep House legend Rick Wade has just released what is according to Discogs his 90th short version release as he returns to London imprint Shall Not Fade. Titled In Mah Mind, all three cuts are indicative of a producer in possession of not only an encyclopaedic knowledge of his craft but also an innate […]

Record Review: Rrose (USA) – Hymn To Moisture

After almost a decade and across 19 explorative EP’s and 3 collaborative albums focused on composition, American experimental electronic producer Seth Horvitz aka Rrose have consistently pushed, poked and prodded at techno’s boundary questioning its self imposed limits and extending its possibilities a little more each time. This week saw them finally released their long […]

RECORD REVIEW: CENTERPOINT (AUS) – PERSISTENCE EP

Earlier this month Adelaide techno producer Vince Calabro aka Centerpoint released his debut standalone EP, the aptly titled Persistence. Out through London underground imprint Aesir. it offers up three fascinating and definitive cuts of hard and penetrative modular driven techno. With a dynamic intensity reflective of its track titles, it’s both a culmination of and […]

RECORD REVIEW: REBOOT (GER) – RENZO EP

After a busy 2018 that produced three EP’s and an album, Frankfurt House DJ/Producer Frank Heinrich aka Reboot has just released his first material of 2019 in the form of the explorative and focused Renzo. Coming after the deep and dubby Vulvasion, the superlative EP marks back to back releases on Monkey Safari’s and Karl […]

RECORD REVIEW: JASON JAMES (USA) – SEEMS LIKE TEARS AGO

“I had people who were wanting me to get rid of the [pedal] steel, get rid of the fiddle. My feeling is, ‘Screw it, I’m just gonna do what I want to.’ It’s being honest to yourself. It’s a feeling that I get when I play these songs — there’s an honesty that’s conveyed. Some […]

RECORD REVIEW: KARLITA (FRA) – LAZYDAYZ (clipp.art)

“Où la mélancolie et l’espoir règnent d’une manière groovy” — Carla Galmiche. A week back saw Montpellier based artist Carla Galmiche aka KARLITA release the perfectly balanced and stunningly fit for purpose Lazydayz, her new EP for Melbourne label clipp.art. As close to understated perfection as you’ll get with not a second overcooked or underdone, its […]

RECORD REVIEW: E-SAGGILA (CAN) – MY WORLD MY WAY (Northern Electronics)

Toronto experimental techno producer Rita Mikhael aka E-Saggila has released her brief but stunningly powerful new album My World My Way on Stockholm left field techno label Northern Electronics. It follows on from last year’s excellent Dedicated To Sublimity for Bank Records where her penchant to utilise a vast array disparate and oppositional elements and […]

RECORD REVIEW: BIBLO (TUR) – LEKE EP

After a long hiatus, late last month Istanbul experimental electronic artist Pınar Üzeltüzenci aka biblo, marked her return to music with the release of her new four track EP, Leke (stain). It’s her first standalone solo release since her breakthrough 2014 album Absence and sees her move thematically inward using her considerable sonic palette to […]

RECORD REVIEW: UUN (USA) – PROLETARII EP

Detroit techno producer Uun has unleashed his punishing new three track EP Proletarii through veteran Glasgow imprint Soma. The cerebral hard hitter follows on from the Hell Is Empty EP last month for Mord and is his fourth release since first blowing us away with his multi-faceted Exhumed Tapes II EP in the middle of […]

RECORD REVIEW: RARE DM (USA) – VANTA BLACK

Last month saw Brooklyn based electronic artist Erin Louise Hoagg aka Rare DM, release her debut album Vanta Black. Thematically, it’s a deeply personal, open and honest exploration of the thoughts behind the self-examination Hoagg conducted in the wake of severed relationship where her love was given but never returned. The intellectual and emotional complexities […]

RECORD REVIEW: SKYDECK (AUS) – EUREKA MOMENT

Amidst the lies and absurdities contained within the dead heart of modern neoliberal capitalist life Melbourne outfit Skydeck, the brainchild of Ciggie Witch’s Mitch Clemens and Pregnancy’s Dominic Kearton, bands they shared individually and respectively with the late Zac Denton, possess little time for pointless convention and even less for naked ambition. Their debut album, […]

RECORD REVIEW: ASTRAGAL (USA) – EP II

Houston postpunk/shoegaze outfit Astragal, intelligently named after the semi-autobiographical novel, L’Astragale, the first of three by French-Algerian author and fierce libertarian Albertine Sarrazin, released their second EP earlier this month, simply titled II. The trio announced their presence three years ago with a short three track debut and followed it up with three more on […]

RECORD REVIEW: VIOLET – NEW VISIONS EP

Late last month, Lisbon electronic artist and producer Inês Coutinho aka Violet, released her brand new four track EP New Visions. It’s an enthrallingly diverse and cannily inventive work in all its compositional and sonic aspects. Respectfully and cleverly incorporative of the influences and rhythms that have permeated from and into her homeland of Portugal, […]

RECORD REVIEW: CARSON McHONE – CAROUSEL

“I think a lot of roots influenced artists feel the need to defend tradition in this way.  Today though, I want to do more with the form, push myself past where I understand it to be.” Carson McHone. Our album of the week this week comes from Austin DIY independent country artist Carson McHone.  Carousel […]

RECORD REVIEW: MOHLAO (NET) – KONSTRUKT 009

Prolific Helsinki based Dutch artist and producer Samuel van Dijk released a new EP Friday under his techno trading moniker Mohlao for Dutch imprint Konstrukt. On it he seeks out the tangible and seeks to plant his feet back on terra firma having immersed himself and the listener in everything below and above ground on the cannily […]

RECORD REVIEW: NEEL (ITA) – TRANSITION

Rome techno producer and sound engineer Giuseppe Tillieci aka Neel, unleashed his new EP Transition on Friday, his second for Gent label Token Records after 2017’s stunning Calcata. Its four tracks were inspired by and named in turn after four particular elements in the group of transition metals said to be crucial to the future of […]

RECORD REVIEW: ARCHITECTURAL – A GIRL WITH NO FRIENDS EP

“For me a real artist is someone who doesn’t base his or her art in making money, even though you must live from it…but at the time of creation you cannot be thinking of the money you might make or what you make is going to sell or not. Unfortunately, we must fight all the […]

RECORD REVIEW: G-PROD (FRA) – ALCHEMIC

Renaat Vandepapeliere, the founder and co-owner of R&S Records returned to the DJ fray at the age of 60 for a singular purpose. To highlight cutting edge music made by electronic musicians and producers who otherwise wouldn’t get a look in. In addition to spinning their creations he added a new series to the R&S […]

RECORD REVIEW: SERENA BUTLER (ITA) – WE WANT NEITHER CLEAN HANDS NOR BEAUTIFUL SOULS

We as human beings are living simultaneously in the most knowledgeable and progressive yet most ignorant and conservative of times. It means for half the world’s population who still suffer greatly from that ignorance and for those in the other half, who value justice and equality and know we have more to gain than lose […]

RECORD REVIEW: JULIANA DAUGHERTY – LIGHT

“I gave it a good fight, I tried to be alright, but I wasn’t.” Charlottesville artist Juliana Daugherty’s new album Light begins with the amazing opener ‘Player’, the deft merger of gently strummed rock chords, electronic effects and pitter-patter like drum programming. While the rest of the record’s diverse offering can be seen as a bit […]

RECORD REVIEW: SKEE MASK (GER) – COMPRO

Left field Munich techno producer Bryan Müller aka Skee Mask, recently unveiled his deeply outstanding new album Compro on Munich’s Ilian Tape. After the rhythmic and vocal intensity of and the kaleidoscopic exhibits found on last year’s EP’s ‘ISS002’ and ‘2012’ respectively, the Bavarian continues to not only explore the inner and outer dimensions of new […]

RECORD REVIEW: DJ KOZE (GER) – KNOCK KNOCK

Earlier this month abstract DJ/producer/artist and Hamburg native Stefan Kozalla aka DJ Koze, released his sprawling new album Knock Knock, an artistic journey that invokes a kaleidoscope of feelings and emotions. His hypnotic yet restless creations have a smidge of the familiar about them but if you don’t feel a certain affinity and sense of […]

RECORD REVIEW: BEACH HOUSE (USA) – 7

In a more general sense, we are interested by the human mind’s (and nature’s) tendency to create forces equal and opposite to those present. Thematically, this record often deals with the beauty that arises in dealing with darkness; the empathy and love that grows from collective trauma; the place one reaches when they accept rather […]

RECORD REVIEW: HALF WAIF (USA) – LAVENDER

Last week Half Waif, the synth pop project that coalesces around the considerable talents of Brooklyn artist Nandi Rose Plunkett, released the introspective yet immediately touching long player Lavender. It contains a dozen deeply self-explorative and richly substantive vignettes on transience, isolation, need and realisation that are heightened emotionally by Plunkett’s instantly affecting vocals, thoughtful in […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE NEW TIGERS (FIN) – DO XAO

The transformative new album Do Xao by Turku retro pop futurists The New Tigers represents a significant change in direction for the band. It’s nine tracks were created in the wake of a critical decision made in the winter of 2016/17 after the mid year release of their 2016 EP Vindication.  Sans drummer and hitherto […]

RECORD REVIEW: KISSY FLEUR (AUS) – RIPENED FRUIT

“I hope those that are unaware of the suffering that comes along with sexual assault will be confronted by the lyrics and I hope that those who can connect with the story can find healing within the songs, the same way it helped to heal me.” Kissy Fleur Earlier this month Sydney singer/songwriter, harpist and producer […]

RECORD REVIEW: FAUSTINA MASIGAT (USA) – FAUSTINA MASIGAT

To pick apart and critically examine the beliefs you once trusted and firmly embraced and let go of all the ambitions you developed from and with them is one of the most difficult decisions anyone can undertake. It takes courage and humility to admit the path you been on is the wrong one and even […]

RECORD REVIEW: PRIMAL CODE (ITA) – KONSTRUKT 008 EP

Back in late January Milan ambient techno duo Davide Perrone and Gabriele Giuggioli aka Primal Code, dropped an eloquent and immediate four track EP which served as the eighth release from the fine Dutch label Konstrukt*. Having devoured the exceptional Konstrukt 007 by fellow Italian producer Serena Butler which came too late last year to […]

RECORD REVIEW: COURTNEY MARIE ANDREWS – MAY YOUR KINDNESS REMAIN

“It feels good not to bartend.” Courtney Marie Andrews. The musical and lyrical content along with the title of the new Courtney Marie Andrews record May Your Kindness Remain is revealing on a number of levels. Not only does it perfectly showcase her undeniable vocal and musical virtuosity and her superlative songwriting abilities, it also […]

RECORD REVIEW: BART SKILS – BELLS OF THE REVOLUTION EP

A month back Amsterdam DJ/Producer Bart Skils released a new batch of super steady and subtlety rich techno wonders with his Bells of The Revolution four tracker for Drumcode. It’s been rather a long wait since the release of his excellent Black Vans EP back in 2016 and you get the feeling that it will […]

RECORD REVIEW: LOWTIDE – SOUTHERN MIND

Last Friday saw Melbourne shoegaze outfit Lowtide finally send their second album Southern Mind out into the world. It comes almost six months after we heard its first cut, the rhythmic and pop inspired  ‘Alibi‘ and the announcement they’d joined forces with Rice Is Nice, one of the country’s most respected independent record labels. The […]

LIVE REVIEW & IN PICTURES: ST. JEROME’S LANEWAY FESTIVAL 2018 – HARTS MILL, ADELAIDE

With the St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival wrapping up in Fremantle on Sunday, its two week long music odyssey that began in Singapore and rounded Australia via New Zealand has again proven, alongside the Golden Plains weekender, why it remains the most relevant, vital and diverse independent music festival in Australia. Since first witnessing the festival […]

RECORD REVIEW: FUTURE MUSEUMS – ROSEWATER CEREMONY

One of the many pleasing and lasting markers that has characterised independent music culturally over the last two decades has been its tendency to embrace patience and the compositional long game. It has seen a multitude of artists and bands create a plethora of amazing experimental and instrumental releases. This has coincided with an healthy […]

RECORD REVIEW: BED WETTIN’ BAD BOYS – ROT

Sydney “(fuck) success” rock band Bed Wettin’ Bad Boys have just released their first record in four years.  And unsurprisingly with the usual wry self-deprecation, they’ve titled it Rot, a description which in truth while humorous is itself a load of actual rot. Despite their amusing efforts to state otherwise they’ve again produced a very, […]

RECORD REVIEW: LAST LEAVES – OTHER TOWNS THAN OURS

When The Lucksmiths called time in 2009 after 16 years and eight albums they left behind not only half a lifetime producing music of great melodic and structural quality but it was of a style and character that was created in a context which embraced the whole gamut of human emotion, from downcast melancholy to unbridled optimism, […]

RECORD REVIEW: KAUF – REGROWTH

Today finally sees the release of the long awaited debut album, Regrowth from Los Angeles based artist Ronald Kaufman, aka Kauf. It’s been four years since the release of his 2013 EP As Much Again and word first surfaced about the impending release of this record in early 2016 when he unveiled its first single, […]

OUR SINS OF SONIC OMISSION, RECORD REVIEW: ROLLING BLACKOUTS COASTAL FEVER – TALK TIGHT & THE FRENCH PRESS

“It’s about remembering where you came from and making sure you don’t act like a wanker, basically.” Tom Russo – guitarist/vocalist from Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever to London In Stereo , March 29, 2017. Earlier this year unbeknownst to this music blog Melbourne’s self proclaimed soft punk rock/tough pop quintet Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever released an excellent […]

RECORD REVIEW: BEN FROST – THE CENTRE CANNOT HOLD

Reykjavik based Australian artist Ben Frost’s deeply affecting fifth album The Centre Cannot Hold is a subterranean work of visceral and explorative beauty and is a perfect follow up to the compelling percussive intensity of his 2014 long player Aurora. Like with all his releases, Frost again pushes the boundaries of his own art and the […]

RECORD REVIEW: MOLLY NILSSON – IMAGINATIONS

“Milton Friedman, burn in hell’. Molly Nilsson, Not Today Satan. After being all over the announcement late last year of Molly Nilsson’s eighth seventh full length Imaginations which was originally due in January, it’s subsequent five month delay meant it dropped of the radar here. When it was finally released in late May, regretfully and […]

OUR SINS OF SONIC OMISSION #3: HOLODECK RECORDS – TROLLER

This post is the third in the three part Our Sins of Sonic Omission review series highlighting the 2016 releases by Austin label Holodeck Records that we, much to our chagrin, allowed to pass us by. For the context behind the series, go here. Graphic, the second long player from Austin dark wave trio Troller, originally released back […]

OUR SINS OF SONIC OMISSION #2: HOLODECK RECORDS – SAMANTHA GLASS

This post is the second in the three part Our Sins of Sonic Omission review series highlighting the 2016 releases by Austin label Holodeck Records that we, much to our chagrin, allowed to pass us by. For the context behind the series, go here. The second in Our Sins Of Omission series highlighting the 2016 electronic releases of […]

OUR SINS OF SONIC OMISSION #1: HOLODECK RECORDS – DYLAN CAMERON

This post is the first in the three part Our Sins of Omission review series highlighting the 2016 releases by Austin label Holodeck Records that we, much to our chagrin, allowed to pass us by. For the context behind the series, go here. The first instalment involves born and bred Austin artist, producer and prime […]

RECORD REVIEW: LAURE BRIARD – SUR LA PISTE DE DANSE

A mere sixteen months after the release of her debut Révélation, Toulouse based psych-pop revivalist Laure Briard has delivered her second album, the superbly diverse Sur la piste de danse (On The Dance Floor). We love it so much that it’s this week’s Indie30 Album of the Week. Whereas Révélation was a more straightforward affair, this […]

RECORD REVIEW: BLOOD ORANGE – FREETOWN SOUND

“My album is for everyone told they’re not black enough, too black, too queer, not queer the right way…it’s a clawback” Devonté Hynes. Much will be made of the new Blood Orange album, Freetown Sound. Already there are mounds of articles online in music and cultural publications dissecting its musicology, multifarious meanings and celebrating its […]

RECORD REVIEW: SUMMER FLAKE – HELLO FRIENDS

Two or so years ago Stephanie Crase packed up her music toolkit and left her home city of Adelaide for Australia’s independent music hub Melbourne. After releasing her first LP in 2013, You Can Have It All, she took her Summer Flake moniker and thankfully, the veritable shit load of musical ideas and odds and […]

RECORD REVIEW: JUNIOR BOYS – BIG BLACK COAT

Junior Boys have always managed to combine distance with intimacy in sound and effect and on their latest offering, the excellent Big Black Coat, this is demonstrable in spades. Whether it’s in their subtle low key style in a musical sense or Jeremy Greenspan’s warm yet delicate vocals, their music never overpowers and never overwhelms. […]

RECORD REVIEW: DIIV – IS THE IS ARE

Habits are hard to break. Just ask Zachary Cole Smith, the mainstay behind New York City outfit DIIV, he’s had a few. His relationship with addiction is well documented but its his formed habits around the DIIV approach and sound that are of far more interest here. While Smith talked about the new DIIV record, […]

RECORD REVIEW: AIDAN KNIGHT – EACH OTHER

The seductive musical qualities of Victoria artist Aidan Knight may not be readily apparent on the first couple of spins of Each Other, his third record and first since 2012. But spend a little time with the Canadian and his large but singularly coherent coterie of contributing artists and you’ll soon be ensconsed in Knight’s […]

RECORD REVIEW: GRIMES – ART ANGELS

As at this time every year, we’ve been pondering candidates for our album of the year gong and its been a rather difficult process. Yesterday though the process got a little easier with the release of Art Angels, the intensely cerebral pop wonderland created by Canadian pop experimentalist Claire Boucher, aka Grimes. If anybody has […]

RECORD REVIEW: JENNY HVAL – APOCALYPSE, GIRL

Norwegian experimentalist and self admitted “outsider artist and writer”, Jenny Hval takes on everything from religion to politics, sex and sexuality and employs surrealist /images to represent her representation of complexity and the indefinite on her fifth full length and third under her own name, the brutal, Apocalypse, Girl. It’s an intensely thoughtful and intelligent […]

RECORD REVIEW: LIZA ANNE – TWO

Nashville based singer/songwriter Liza Anne Odachowski released her exquisitely beautiful and personal second album this week, simply named Two. It quickly follows up her debut album from last year, The Colder Months and sees just seven tracks, all of which rest of precision and delicate arrangements, no waste, no wallowing in self-indulgence here. Liza Anne […]

RECORD REVIEW: CASA DEL MIRTO – STILL

I must admit I was a little underwhelmed upon first hearing the latest album from Trento electronic trio Casa del Mirto. My initial reluctance stemmed from the fact that its so different from the band’s previous works but that, as it transpired, turned out to be its greatest asset. Still was released late last month […]

RECORD REVIEW: VIET CONG – VIET CONG

The self titled debut long player from Calgary noise/post-punk quartet Viet Cong is our first album of the week for 2015. The intelligently crafted seven tracks employ the best elements of a myriad of approaches and sounds that personify the experimentation of the immediate post punk era but in terms of the fruits of that […]

RECORD REVIEW: SUN KIL MOON – BENJI

 I woke up a couple of weeks ago and decided to spend some time as I was readying myself for work with Mark Kozelek’s latest full length as Sun Kil Moon, Benji. I knew of the emotional intensity of the record from reads about it beforehand but nothing could prepare me for what was about […]

RECORD REVIEW: STUMBLEINE – SPIDERWEBBED

Spiderwebbed, the debut record from Bristol producer Stumbleine is quite simply and effectively a chilled out atmospheric creation. There’s no real high and lows as its ten tracks wash over creating a consistent dreamy collage of downtempo electro mixed with hints of dubstep and shoegaze. The album comes on the back of a series of releases, […]

RECORD REVIEW: TAME IMPALA – LONERISM

2010 saw a little-known band from Perth, Western Australia, named after a medium sized antelope, make one of the biggest debut impacts the land down-under had seen in a long time. Headed up by Kevin Parker, (who began his ascent into music in 2005 with the blues / jazz / psychedelic outfit, The Dee Dee […]

RECORD REVIEW: FLYING LOTUS – UNTIL THE QUIET COMES

As with all work from Chris Ellison, his latest effort and fourth under the moniker of Flying Lotus, Until The Quiet Comes requires a great deal of patience for those without a trained musical ear. The first couple of listens can be quite alienating but subsequent spins slowly release a dreamy dystopia, one that connects […]

RECORD REVIEW: HOW TO DRESS WELL – TOTAL LOSS

Tom Krell’s unique ability to crossover pop and R & B boundaries largely stem from his determination to eschew style in favour of substance. On his latest effort as How To Dress Well, Total Loss, his intensely personal and poignant disposition is laid bare. The album title and song titles, ‘When I Was In Trouble’, […]

RECORD REVIEW: BLANCHE BLANCHE BLANCHE – WINK WITH BOTH EYES

The saying ‘its so wrong its right’ has never been more applicable in the case the brilliantly and intelligently constructed work of Vermont’s off kilter geniuses Blanche Blanche Blanche. Their new album, the wholly analog Wink With Both Eyes might not be everyone’s thing but if you get what they’re on about you’re in for […]

RECORD REVIEW: WOODS – BEND BEYOND

Brooklyn quartet Woods have given us seven releases in seven years, a range of folk-driven often-melancholic ponderings of our place in this twenty first century world. Known for their lo-fi sound, this seventh LP sees the band take a leap forward both in production and substance. Bend Beyond has a more optimistic sound than previous […]

RECORD REVIEW: POP SINGLES – ALL GONE

In the form of their debut album, All Gone, Melbourne trio Pop Singles have released a melodically powerful and taut record full of jangly and edgy guitar, driving, restless bass lines and imperfectly perfect drums topped off with a melancholic lyrical disposition. The band keep the sum of its influences close. There are sounds reminiscent […]

RECORD REVIEW: GRIZZLY BEAR – SHIELDS

Three years in the making, the fourth studio album from indie rock royalty Grizzly Bear was put together after a six month hiatus, which had the band members coming in with fresh eyes, and a feeling of starting over. Recording began in Marfa, Texas, a place known for its arts collective and good vibe, in […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE XX – COEXIST

I’m always amazed at how artists’ second albums are always for the large part more harshly judged when compared with their first. Rather, it would be good to see reviews of those second albums actually home in on the album in question in isolation. The unnecessary and perhaps unwanted hyperbole that surrounded the self titled […]

RECORD REVIEW: CAT POWER – SUN

Anyone who has been to a Cat Power gig knows her unique personality and emotions are something she wears on her sleeve, laid bare for all to experience. It is a great thing to see such honesty on stage, and it comes through whole-heartedly in her music, songwriting and vocals. After what have been a […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE FRESH & ONLYS – LONG SLOW DANCE

Long Slow Dance is San Francisco art pop outfit The Fresh & Onlys fourth full length in just five years. This is in combination with the additional release of two EP’s and the peddling a stack of 7″ singles on a variety of labels over that time. Within their first twelve months, they had produced […]

RECORD REVIEW: MATTHEW DEAR – BEAMS

There is no one on the indie music scene quite like Matthew Dear. Since 1999 he has been a DJ, recorded eight albums, nine EPs, remixed many artists including The XX, Hot Chip, The Chemical Brothers, The Juan MacLean and Spoon. He has had three aliases (False, Audion and Jabberjaw), and co-founded ground-breaking record label, […]

RECORD REVIEW: TEENGIRL FANTASY – TRACER

On Tracer, Nick Weiss and Logan Takahashi, aka Teengirl Fantasy, have left behind the samples that abounded on their previous effort 7AM in favour of a record that comprises exclusively original material. It has to be said its a good move, as Tracer highlights their ability to develop and curate caringly sculptured and restrained tracks […]

RECORD REVIEW: HOLY OTHER – HELD

As evidenced through his musical approach and his on-stage non-persona, Mancunian based electronic producer Holy Other has always been focused on creating mood and atmosphere for others rather than identifying or representing specifics of himself. Oscillating quite deliberately between laconic and tension filled elements in his music and employing non-lyrical approaches to vocals, his at […]

RECORD REVIEW: TEEN DAZE – ALL OF US TOGETHER

Since mid 2010 Teen Daze has been prolifically releasing EPs and singles over the web, leading up to his debut LP, Four More Years. He released this through Arcade Sound in 2010 as a ‘bedroom producer’, and was immediately impressive as he had honed his craft, amassing a good following while developing his style. My […]

RECORD REVIEW: WILD NOTHING – NOCTURNE

When Jack Tatum released the EP, Golden Haze in 2010, which sported its to-die-for title track, the direction of his Wild Nothing project was clear. Gone was the less than perfect production values of his promising and impressive debut album, Gemini, to be replaced with a dream-like sheen that sat beautifully underneath his gorgeous take […]

RECORD REVIEW: ARIEL PINK’S HAUNTED GRAFFITI – MATURE THEMES

The polarisation that characterises the reviews of Mature Themes, the new album by Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, is not surprising. Pink is an artist people seem to either love and get, love and don’t need to get, or just don’t get and dismiss with often quite nasty distain from their narrow corner of the world. […]

RECORD REVIEW: TWIN SHADOW – CONFESS

Ever since George Lewis Jnr. burst onto the indie music scene in 2009 in his unique and unquiet way, with the brilliant debut Forget, those in the know have been hanging out for the follow up. Definitely not shy of a camera, Twin Shadow’s persona is a bolt from the 80s, with the songs from […]

RECORD REVIEW: DIIV – OSHIN

Indie music Mecca Brooklyn will go down as one of those special places, a place that has fostered a cultural niche throughout a certain period of history. Part of all this comes DIIV, (say “dive”), the four piece project of Beach House guitarist Zachary Cole Smith. It all began, as these days is often the […]

RECORD REVIEW: ETERNAL SUMMERS – CORRECT BEHAVIOR

Since their inception in 2008 Virginia indie post pop/punk trio Eternal Summers have been railing constantly against the stifling straightjacket of authority, and no, they’re not talking about the exactly the same kind of authority that has led to the shameful treatment of Pussy Riot in Russia. That’s more overt and in your face, although […]

RECORD REVIEW: PURITY RING – SHRINES

As their plethora of singles and b-sides released over 2011 and this year suggested, the debut album from Canadian duo Purity Ring, Shrines, was always going to be A musical highlight of 2012. Why? Because it is unmistakably now in its approach and delivery, has a definite vision and sounds like nothing else in its […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE WALKMEN – HEAVEN

Since their beginnings ten years ago, The Walkmen have followed a course many bands would be envious of. A big sound, a good time, and a massive future. Heaven is their seventh studio LP, out via Fat Possum / Bella Union, following on from the excellent 2010 album Lisbon. Produced by Phil Ek (Built To […]

RECORD REVIEW: DIRTY PROJECTORS – SWING LO MAGELLAN

Any Dirty Projectors release has always intially served to confound and challenge its listener. The Brooklyn based David Longstreth led project continues down this path with the Projectors latest album Swing Lo Magellan, a wide and varied sonic landscape that is eternally restless and ever changing. Musically, like with Bitte Orca before it, its twelve […]

RECORD REVIEW: PEAKING LIGHTS – LUCIFER

Mexican Summer / Weird World Peaking Lights Official Site Buy vinyl here Indra Dunis and Aaron Coyes, the married couple behind the psychedelic electronic duo Peaking Lights certainly wear their spirituality on their sleeves when it comes to expressing themselves through the art of making music. On their third effort, Lucifer, that otherworldly expression is […]

RECORD REVIEW: BEACH HOUSE – BLOOM

Sub Pop Buy here The fourth album from Baltimore duo Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally has been hotly anticipated, following on the heels of the massive previous LP, Teen Dream. Bloom, the fourth long player in the Beach House discography does not fly off wildly in a new direction, nor is it a mere extension […]

RECORD REVIEW: TOPS – TENDER OPPOSITES

Arbutus/Atelier Ciseaux Tops Bandcamp Buy vinyl here The last decade or so has seen the onset of a cerebral and nostalgic form of pop music largely thanks to the left field single minded work of outsider luminaries like Ariel Pink, John Maus, Matt Fishbeck, Geneva Jacuzzi, Gary War etc. It has produced an array of […]

RECORD REVIEW: DEAD MELLOTRON – GLITTER

Sonic Cathedral Dead Mellotron Bandcamp Buy vinyl here Dead Mellotron began in 2007 as the solo project of Louisiana native Josh Frazier and its first incarnation came in the form of the heavy and atmospheric digital only release Ghost Light Constellation. That title is telling as there has always been something otherworldly about Frazier’s approach. […]

RECORD REVIEW: PS I LOVE YOU – DEATH DREAMS

Paper Bag Buy here If you head out of Toronto towards Montreal on the 401, around the 240 km mark on the banks of Lake Ontario, you’ll hit Kingston, a smallish city that in a rock sense, punches above its weight and is home to the indie rock duo, PS I Love You. Formed by […]

RECORD REVIEW: FATHER JOHN MISTY – FEAR FUN

Sub Pop Buy here “It’s all of me and none of me” is how Joshua Tillman has described his relationship with Father John Misty, a new incarnation and a step in a different direction for this talented and quirky singer-songwriter. The sombre and melancholic atmosphere of his previous work has given way to a warm, […]

RECORD REVIEW: AMANDA MAIR – AMANDA MAIR

Labrador Buy here It would be easy to see Amanda Mair as a mere musical product. After all she came of age and turned 18 just this week, is easy on the eye, doesn’t yet write her own songs and appeared last year out of nowhere with two pieces of pop bliss in the pure […]

RECORD REVIEW: LOTUS PLAZA – SPOOKY ACTION AT A DISTANCE

Kranky Buy here The Floodlight Collective from 2009 saw Deerhunter’s guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Lockett Pundt give his all to creating his own album, full of reverb laden guitars and washed out vocals. While similar to the work of Deerhunter it definitely had his own stamp of dreamy guitar pop, that has shone through with his […]

RECORD REVIEW: PHÈDRE – PHÈDRE

Daps Records  Buy here Trying to access experimental music can sometimes be very alienating experience, stemming as it does from the deep recesses of individual creativity. It can run the risk of being a self-indulgent stand offish affair where the distance created between artist and listener is difficult to breach. But at the end of […]

RECORD REVIEW: CHROMATICS – KILL FOR LOVE

Italians Do It Better Buy here Portland, Oregon’s Chromatics have transformed themselves since their punk inspired beginnings in 2001 to become one of the most interesting and talked about groups of the year. Their rise has been a slow burn, a process which piece by piece has gathered momentum to the point they are at […]

RECORD REVIEW: CATS ON FIRE: ALL BLACKSHIRTS TO ME

It’s been a long and frustrating road travelled for main Cats On Fire protagonist Mattias Björkas and company. The now five piece pop troubadors had their beginnings in the then somewhat small and isolated west coast Finnish town of Vaasa where in late 2002/early 2003 as an 18 year old Swedish speaking Björkas, Kenneth Höglund […]

RECORD REVIEW: BROTHERTIGER – GOLDEN YEARS

Mush Records Buy here Brooklyn based John Jagos is Brothertiger, an artist who has pushed his way through a crowded genre to emerge with originality and confidence that many would be envious of. Hailing originally from Athens, Ohio, he first made a name for himself with the brilliant Vision Tunnels EP (which was a favourite […]

RECORD REVIEW: PINKUNOIZU – FREE TIME

Full Time Hobby Buy here Danish psychedelic pop rock outfit Pinkunoizu are a restless bunch, both in style, influence and the myriad of genres they employ and this also comes through the cultural references that come through in their music. Anything goes but everything fits on Free Time, their debut album released last month. Textural […]

RECORD REVIEW: BOWERBIRDS – THE CLEARING

Dead Oceans Buy here I first came across Raleigh folk/pop outfit Bowerbirds in a tactile sense three years ago when they did some live work for the Vienna cultural and media collective They Shoot Music. In a seemingly effortless canter, the trio walked and played their way around the fine Austrian capital showcasing songs off […]

RECORD REVIEW: GRIMES – VISIONS

Arbutus Buy here Twenty-something Claire Boucher has produced her own distinctive style of sound in her short career, something that must frustrate the hell out of those people who must classify everything they hear. As we have said here before, the proliferation of naming genres within genres has become something of a joke, and while […]

RECORD REVIEW: LAMBCHOP – MR. M

 There is a remarkable consistency that characterises independent music artists like Kurt Wagner, ever present head of the ever changing Nashville collective Lambchop. That consistency exists alongside of and perhaps because of their modesty and Wagner exudes that special quality in spades. Reclusive and squarely rooted in the real world, the down to earth disposition […]

RECORD REVIEW: FIRST AID KIT – THE LION’S ROAR

Klara and Johanna are the sisters Soderberg, from the southern suburb of Enskede, Stockholm. The amazing story arcing from composing a song as teenagers for a demo tape in 2007, to playing stages around the world in 2012, is an example of how amazing the Internet can be. As First Aid Kit, their true and […]

RECORD REVIEW: BOY FRIEND – EGYPTIAN WRINKLE

  Hell Yes! Buy here There is little doubt that the dreamy chilled out fare served up by Austin duo Boy Friend can polarise. With the chillwave genre now in the gun sights of many a critic, not only for its supposed imminent demise but for its existence in the first place, anything that sounds […]

RECORD REVIEW: JOHN TALABOT – fIN

  Permanent Vacation Buy here Since appearing on the electro scene back in 2009 with the insanely danceable eight minute club classic ‘Sunshine’, John Talabot had people taking notice. He has refined and developed his craft over the following years with the EPs My Old School, Matilda’s Dream, and Families bringing us to his latest […]

RECORD REVIEW: BURNING HEARTS – EXTINCTIONS

It’s been seven years since multi-instrumentalist Henry Ojala (Cats On Fire) and vocalist Jessika Rapo (Le Futur Pompiste) met on a joint tour and decided over time to collaborate on a new project that would become Burning Hearts. Their debut album, the upbeat Aboa Sleeping would appear five often difficult years later in 2009, full […]

RECORD REVIEW: KORALLREVEN – AN ALBUM BY KORALLREVEN

Acephale Buy here The ambient sounds of Swedish band Korallreven, made up of Marcus Joons and Daniel Tjader  have enthused and relaxed the minds of many fans world wide since the release of ‘Loved Up’ a couple of years ago. This debut album has been a long time coming, and fans of Tjader’s other band, […]

RECORD REVIEW: ATLAS SOUND – PARALLAX

4AD Buy here You often come across people that choose to be stuck in music timewarps, adhering to a genre or a band like its been superglued to their conciousness and who complain that there’s nothing around in music at present that rivals that particular ‘classic’ era or a particular genre or band that they […]

RECORD REVIEW: AND SO I WATCH YOU FROM AFAR – GANGS

Richter Collective / Sargent House Buy here Originally released in Ireland and Europe earlier this year, Gangs, the second release from the honest, hard working Northern Irish post rock band And So I Watch You From Afar recently received a much deserved North American gong through Sargent House taking the then quartet’s music to a […]

RECORD REVIEW: M+A: things.yes

Italian duo M+A have shown their adeptness at combining a myriad of genres on their latest offering, the curiously titled, things.yes. Only just into their twenties, Alessandro Degli and Michele Ducci, in employing a layered and multi-genre approach manage to create a sound that is at once frenetic and cluttered while also managing to be languid […]

RECORD REVIEW: TWIN SISTER – IN HEAVEN

Long Island quintet Twin Sister hit the ground running in 2008 with their impressive debut, the EP Vampires With Dreaming Kids. The four tracks on this plus the six from last year’s follow up EP, Color Your Life showcased three things; Andrea Estella’s chameleon like vocal abilities allowing her to adapt her voice from hushed […]

RECORD REVIEW: REAL ESTATE – DAYS

Domino Buy here Real Estate are supposedly dedicated to producing simple, uncomplicated music. From the languid reverb laden sound, the honest to suburban lyrics to the chilled out song titles, Days, the bands follow up to its impressive lo-fi selt titled debut, could of easily just turned into a nice record, easy to embrace, but […]

RECORD REVIEW: ST. VINCENT – STRANGE MERCY

4AD St. Vincent Official Site Buy vinyl here Beautifully abrasive. These two words set together best describe the third album, Strange Mercy from the extraordinarily talented American singer-songwriter and instrumentalist Annie Clark, artistically known to all of us now as St. Vincent. Strange Mercy is a strange album, strange though only though in terms of […]

RECORD REVIEW: FEIST – METALS

Cherrytree Leslie Feist’s incredible voice is known to millions but her name maybe to not so many. Her smash hit from 2007’s ‘The Remainder’, had an immediate impact and was snapped up by one of the world’s biggest brands to hawk its wares. The song, ‘1234’ was massive, and in production was known simply as […]

RECORD REVIEW: PALLERS – THE SEA OF MEMORIES

Labrador Buy here In this modern world where music is often churned out at breakneck speed with deadlines to meet and labels to please, it’s refreshing to hear the results of an album whose protagonists took all the time they needed to write, record and mix the end product so it was right for them. […]

RECORD REVIEW: BLITZEN TRAPPER – AMERICAN GOLDWING

  Sub Pop   Buy here   The atmosphere of the open road, bullet riddled signs and dusty roadside diners are the /images conjured up with Blitzen Trapper’s sixth studio album, American Goldwing. The title itself referring to the fat Honda cycle designed for this experience. The Portland, Oregon sextet have been active since 2000 […]

RECORD REVIEW: NEON INDIAN – ERA EXTRAÑA

Static Tongues/Mom + Pop/Transgressive/Pop Frenzy Buy vinyl here Era Extraña, the second release from the Alan Palomo led Neon Indian marks a definite growth in said leaders musical trajectory. Where as the first release, the EP come album Psychic Chasms was full of light psychedelic pastiche and chillwave undertones, Era Extraña is a more disciplined […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE FIELD – LOOPING STATE OF MIND

Kompakt Buy here Axel Willner is the man behind the music that is The Field, and the Swede has just released his third album, a somewhat different take on previous work and a step forward for this renowned musician. The tracks here have a freshness and vitality which is infectious as hell and so very […]

RECORD REVIEW: GIRLS – FATHER, SON, HOLY GHOST

True Panther / Matador Buy here It doesn’t seem so long ago I sat down and wrote a review for the debut album from San Francisco’s Girls. That album, called, Album, became an indie staple and cemented a place for Christopher Owens and Chet ‘JR’ White in playlists and music libraries everywhere. The follow-up EP […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE WAR ON DRUGS – SLAVE AMBIENT

Secretly Canadian Buy here Allowing yourself to be hypnotised by music is one of life’s great pleasures and with Slave Ambient, the new album by Philadelphia’s The War On Drugs, going under is an absolute pleasure. With every listen, you find yourself getting more and more lost in its inordinate pleasures that reveal themselves gradually […]

RECORD REVIEW: ACTIVE CHILD – YOU ARE ALL I SEE

Vagrant Buy here The moment I took the stunning single ‘When Your Love Is Safe’ for a spin last year, I knew that Active Child was going to give me many memorable musical moments to treasure. Indeed, Denver’s Pat Grossi, the man behind the moniker, has been impressing all and sundry with his unique, homespun […]

RECORD REVIEW: COM TRUISE – GALACTIC MELT

Ghostly International Com Truise Official Site  Buy here For those of us who fall into the generation marked ‘X’, the recent proliferation of 80s inspired and influenced electronica has been somewhat bemusing. Saturday morning cartoons, cheesy TV graphics, Atari game consoles, happy pants, stone-wash double-denim, and Knight Rider mark the time. Drum machines and synths […]

RECORD REVIEW: BATTLES – GLOSS DROP

Warp Battles Official Site Buy here You must know you are doing something right when the godfather of electro and experimental music, Brian Eno, turns up at one of your gigs and says he was blown away by your artistry. Even better when he admits to gritting his teeth because he wished “he thought of […]

RECORD REVIEW: WU LYF – GO TELL FIRE TO THE MOUNTAIN

Self released WU LYF Official Site Buy here “World Unite! Lucifer Youth Foundation” is what their band name stands for, it’s pronounced ‘Woo Life’ and they are a band like no other. Four guys from Manchester make up the group, ‘Ellie Jaie’ Evan Roberts, ‘Jeau’ Joe Manning, ‘Lung’ Tom McClung, and ‘Evanse’ Evans Kati, information […]

RECORD REVIEW: SOFT METALS – SOFT METALS

Captured Tracks Soft Metals Soundcloud Buy here The couple (literally) that form Portland duo Soft Metals certainly wear their musical influences on their sleeves and they’re there in spades on their debut self titled LP. Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall, music and voice, have combined to make a mechanical, robotic yet very human record and […]

RECORD REVIEW: WASHED OUT – WITHIN AND WITHOUT

Sub Pop Buy here Having evolved over the last few years from a bedroom producing lo-fi solo outfit, Ernest Greene of Washed Out has just dropped an album that proves that this approach to making music is as worthy and proven as any other. This democracy of expression is obviously more suited to the indie […]

RECORD REVIEW: JOHN MAUS – WE MUST BECOME THE PITILESS CENSORS OF OURSELVES

Upset The Rhythm/Ribbon Music Buy here I headed down to a little pub called Le Motel in the Bastille area of Paris last Thursday night to hear some old and obscure new wave and post punk magic. The tiny two roomed venue was awash with the sounds of bands from around the globe I’d never […]

RECORD REVIEW: JUNIOR BOYS – IT’S ALL TRUE

The fourth studio album by Canadian duo Junior Boys, (Matt Didemus, Jeremy Greenspan) has dropped with high anticipation. It’s All True follows two years on from the brilliant Begone Dull Care, an LP that put them on the indie electro map. Frontman Jeremy Greenspan spent some time in Shanghai during this time, an influence that […]

RECORD REVIEW: BON IVER – BON IVER

Jagjaguwar Buy here The story of Justin Vernon’s life over the last few years makes for interesting reading, and there are pages of it out there on copious blog sites. For Emma, Forever Ago was one of the most impressive indie debuts of the 2000s, and one of the all time best albums to ever […]

RECORD REVIEW: FORD & LOPATIN – CHANNEL PRESSURE

Software/Mexican Summer Buy and mash ups interspersed with poignant, almost eastern sounds. ‘Voices’ is a triumph as it takes the soft rock genre and makes you proud of it. Now when could you ever say that? With a chorus that will stick in your head for days giving you many of those ‘shower moments’, it […]

RECORD REVIEW: LAMB – 5

Strata Music Buy going, and what we have in store over the next hour or so. Synthesised bells and keys give way to ‘Butterfly Effect’, showcasing an ever changing pitch line from Barlow’s bass. The essence is clear by this point of how the stripped back nature and darker, edgier feel of 5 set it […]

RECORD REVIEW: GANG GANG DANCE – EYE CONTACT

4AD Buy here “I can hear everything, it’s everything time”. And so begins the fifth album from Gang Gang Dance, a genre defying band with an interesting past and no doubt a bright future. Based in NYC, they have been toying with sound for ten years, across three labels. Now with 4AD, Eye Contact is […]

RECORD REVIEW: CASS McCOMBS – WIT’S END

Domino Buy takes us through an unsettling tale of a drunk and his eternally suffering wife. The chamber like ‘Buried Alive’ continues that mood and contains a nod early 2000’s ode to the French duo, Air with its pulse like interludes among McCombs simple chord structures and deadpan vibrato. The piano bar like simplicity of […]

RECORD REVIEW: WILD BEASTS – SMOTHER

Domino Buy here When a gothic-horror book from 1818 is cited as an influence on an album you have an idea that what is to follow will be an interesting listen, and Smother is certainly that. The third studio LP from England’s Wild Beasts has been released with high anticipation and they have delivered a […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE ANTLERS – BURST APART

Frenchkiss Buy ending. ‘Tip Toe’, a meditative instrumental, serves as a breather before the beautiful ‘Hounds’ where synths, slow percussion and brass gel together with vocals creating a tenderness The Antlers do so well. ‘Corsicana’ is another minimalist wonder, wispy and laden with synths and crystalline vocals, it drifts away to a void. The closer […]

RECORD REVIEW: OKKERVIL RIVER – I AM VERY FAR

Jagjaguwar Buy it all. The cleverly constructed ‘We Need A Myth’ exposes the fragility of human beings in their ability to confront the truth whether personally or collectively. It just seems all too difficult to grasp anything other than the blissful simplicity of a religious myth, ‘to get two nails through the wrist, to get […]

RECORD REVIEW: FLEET FOXES – HELPLESSNESS BLUES

Sub Pop Buy here When Seattle’s indie folk outfit Fleet Foxes released their second EP Sun Giants, followed by their debut self titled LP, they must have realised what a great year 2008 would turn out to be for them. A mammoth tour schedule to support these releases ensued with critics lavishing praise upon them. […]

RECORD REVIEW: BILL CALLAHAN – APOCALYPSE

Drag City Buy here I continue to wonder if there’s a bad record lurking somewhere in Bill Callahan’s music future and after surveying the organic, earthy fruits on his fourteenth studio album, Apocalypse, I’m coming to the conclusion that the answer is probably no. Since leaving behind his partly necessary lo-fi beginnings in the mid […]

RECORD REVIEW: JENIFEREVER – SILESIA

Monotreme Buy they’ve done. ‘A Drink To Remember’ is a poigant affair with its carefully layered build up and emotional crescendo. Jönson sings about the importance yet ultimate futility of words in expressing the fullness grief and loss ..’glasses touch and drift away…so much and so little to say, memories begin to fade…drink to remember […]

RECORD REVIEW : PANDA BEAR – TOMBOY

Paw Tracks Buy seconds is at once relentless and fantastic. ‘Slow Motion’ seems to bob along like a life buoy and highlights Lennox’s vocals which are strong and confident with the keyboards and reverb creating a rich texture. ‘Surfer’s Hymn’ opens fittingly with sounds of the ocean, before a schizophrenic xylophone kicks in, but again his voice […]

RECORD REVIEW: DIRTY BEACHES – BADLANDS

Zoo Music Buy here There hasn’t been a more polarising album release this year than the debut, Badlands by Dirty Beaches. Full of tortured loops steeped in 50s rockabilly and early 60s pop with a sound that is… well dirty, to say the least has left some praising its protagonist Alex Zhang Hungtai for his […]

RECORD REVIEW: KURT VILE – SMOKE RING FOR MY HALO

Matador Buy here Kurt Vile has been kicking around his unique brand of guitar based song writing for a decade or so now but it’s only over the last four years that his solo work has come to the fore through the release of three albums in addition to a mini album and a spate […]

RECORD REVIEW: PJ HARVEY – LET ENGLAND SHAKE

Island/Vagrant Buy here Since beginning her musical career around twenty years ago, PJ Harvey has been at the top of her game producing powerful albums that cross genres including rock, electronica, folk, punk blues and pop. Her work has been highly regarded over this time as she has reinvented herself time and time again, culminating […]

RECORD REVIEW: CASA DEL MIRTO – 1979

CASA DEL MIRTO – 1979 MASHHH! Records Buy here From the foothills of the Alps, in Trento Italy, come the beautiful languid sounds of Casa Del Mirto. A fitting location for this dreamy disco pop which is the work of Marco Ricci. With origins in producing club music in the mid 2000s, Ricci’s early work […]

RECORD REVIEW: PURO INSTINCT – HEADBANGERS IN ECSTASY

Mexican Summer Buy here If you’re looking for an album that exudes technical perfection you won’t find it on the debut album from California’s Puro Instinct. Update. Wrong (ed.). Formerly Pearl Harbor, the band formed by Piper and Skylar Kaplan a couple of years back, the latter is just 16 and still at school, is […]

RECORD REVIEW: MOGWAI – HARDCORE WILL NEVER DIE, BUT YOU WILL

MOGWAI – Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will Rock Action/Sub Pop Mogwai Official Site Buy here What is it about Mogwai that has some music critics and post rock afficionados expecting a masterpiece every time they drop a record. Is it the fact they are that good, is it just a burden that post […]

RECORD REVIEW: JAMES BLAKE – JAMES BLAKE

JAMES BLAKE – James Blake Atlas / A & M Buy here For a musician who released his first EP a little over 18 months ago, James Blake has impressed many with his unique and delicate blend of ambient electro music. Strong yet fragile vocals sit at the forefront of his tracks but without taking […]

RECORD REVIEW: CUT COPY – ZONOSCOPE

CUT COPY – Zonoscope Modular Buy here Cut Copy never cease to amaze with their uncanny ability to make simple grooves, beats and melodies that are deceptively familiar stand the test of time in a genre that seems limited. So it is with Zonoscope, the third release by the Australian new wave dance/pop outfit, an […]

RECORD REVIEW: DESTROYER – KAPUTT

DESTROYER – Kaputt Merge Records Buy here (Vinyl version) Few artists have the ability to create anything as original and substantial as the career that Dan Bejar has carved out for himself over the past fifteen years as Destroyer. Since his debut self produced LP We’ll Build Them A Golden Bridge, recorded in his home studio […]

RECORD REVIEW: BRAIDS – NATIVE SPEAKER

BRAIDS – Native Speaker Flemish Eye/Kanine Release Date: 18/1/11 Buy here The creation of atmospherics in music has always been important at the best of times, but it just seems much more so at present. Having the ability to bring this important ingredient to the table seems to complete things. Possessing all the virtuosity in […]

RECORD REVIEW: ROBYN – BODY TALK

ROBYN – Body Talk Konichiwa Buy what is to come and you’ll get that law right between the eyes. The latter repeats the revelation ‘my drinking is killing me’ at its beginning ad nauseum, although it never gets to the number of times I’ve said it to myself over the years. And that is just […]

RECORD REVIEW: MASERATI – PYRAMID OF THE SUN

MASERATI – Pyramid Of The Sun Temporary Residence Limited Buy here Maserati have been around for a decade now, and have been prolific in that time since self-releasing their debut EP, 37:29:24 onto a print of just 500 vinyls back in 2001. The band has changed in both style and line-up since then, with Pyramid […]

RECORD REVIEW: INSTITUT POLAIRE – MAKE YOUR OWN MAYFLOWER

INSTITUT POLAIRE – Make Your Own Mayflower Popfrenzy Buy him to not just complement the songs but take them to another level. Left alone, they’re nice, promising pieces of jangled pop but when coupled with the hook laden extra instrumentation however familiar, they become more complex and interesting affairs. ‘Leaving Her Shook’ follows a familiar […]

RECORD REVIEW: BELLE AND SEBASTIAN – WRITE ABOUT LOVE

BELLE AND SEBASTIAN – Write About Love Rough Trade Buy back in July at the Latitude Festival, their first gig in four years. Sarah Martin leads the first track on the new album, ‘I Didn’t See It Coming’ which begins a theme of the following eleven songs, namely the often mundaneness of life, bills, jobs, […]

RECORD REVIEW: GRIMES – HALFAXA

GRIMES – Halfaxa Arbutus Records* Buy digitally style and reminiscent of krautrock. On Halfaxa and indeed perhaps more so on the debut, lyrics are secondary to the creation of atmosphere and Boucher herself admits that writing lyrics is not something she overly enjoys, certainly not to the point of overshadowing the music. Words are cheap […]

RECORD REVIEW: SMALL BLACK – NEW CHAIN

SMALL BLACK – New Chain Jagjaguwar Buy first half of the album with The Cure (Disintegration era) inspired opener ‘Camouflage’, the warped funk of ‘Search Party’ and the warm spectral loop, deep bass and chugging rhythm of ‘Photojournalist’, other gems abound for the patient. ‘Hydra’ begins sparsely with effectively eastern sounding chords before opening up […]

RECORD REVIEW : GLASSER – RING

Glasser – Ring True Panther Buy from her EP of the same name. It first came to many people’s attention via a compilation offering from e-Music called Selected + Collected at the start of 2009. ‘Apply’ was one of the shining tracks, not bad considering the company it had, namely San Fran’s Girls and Michigan’s […]

RECORD REVIEW: ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS – SWANLIGHTS

ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS – Swanlights Secretly Canadian Buy’ employs a traditional bent while Hegarty implores ‘his darling, his father’ to accompany him as he seeks familial connection. The piano and strings are used to great effect on the ethereal ‘Ghost’ which continues the theme of renewal, ‘Snake!, shed your skin and go away’. ‘I’m […]

RECORD REVIEW: NO AGE – EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN

NO AGE – Everything In Between Sub Pop Buy still there, witness ‘Fever Dreaming and Depletion’ that hit you fairly and squarely in the face just when you thought, judging from the first two tracks, that Randall and Spunt had undergone some sort of revolutionary transformation. But transformation has occured. Everything In Between doesn’t peter […]

RECORD REVIEW: GRINDERMAN- GRINDERMAN 2

  GRINDERMAN – Grinderman 2 Mute Records Buy every night and who could blame her, I guess I’ve loved her for too long”. Some dark humour again rears up “My baby calls me the Lochness Monster, two great big humps and then I’m gone”. It’s grubby, sleazy stuff at times. ‘Heathen Child sees Cave not […]

RECORD REVIEW: DEERHUNTER – HALCYON DIGEST

DEERHUNTER – Halcyon Digest 4AD Buy here Music artists, whether they are bands or solo performers are supposed to have a small window of opportunity, a period of time where their creative forces are at their peak and their best work is on display. One, maybe two albums seems to be the shelflife. Very few artists […]

RECORD REVIEW : TWIN SHADOW – FORGET

TWIN SHADOW – Forget Terrible Records Buy here Twin Shadow Official site There are a lot of bands and artists today who have embraced music of the past and reworked it to create a post millennium sound we are all now familiar with. It’s not a rip off, although the influence is boldly there, but it’s reworked, […]

RECORD REVIEW: MATTHEW DEAR – BLACK CITY

MATTHEW DEAR – Black City Ghostly International Buy here  Matthew Dear Official Site  Instant celebrity is a common thing these days, with commercially driven shows like Idol and a million off-shoots promising fame and wealth to young wanna-bes everywhere. But, provenance is another thing and when two artists, one with it and one without, are looked at […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE WALKMEN – LISBON

  THE WALKMEN – Lisbon Fat Possum/Bella Union Buy out single is an example of how the band have grown and learnt to experiment with their approach, (witness the third track ‘Follow The Leader’ for another example of a penchant for risk taking). The heartfelt and sentimental horns blare as if channeling the beginning of […]

RECORD REVIEW: WOMEN – PUBLIC STRAIN

WOMEN – Public Strain Flemish Eye/Jagjaguwar Buy here (UK,EUR,ROW) Pre-order here (CAN/USA) Out September 28. Being the subject of critical acclaim upon the release of a debut album can often make the task of producing a follow up daunting. Not so seemingly for impressive Calgary indie art rockers Women who released their much heralded debut […]

RECORD REVIEW: KACEY JOHANSING – MANY SEASONS

KACEY JOHANSING – Many Seasons Porto Franco Records Kacey Johansing Official Site Buy here I’m not a fan when it comes to the music of Rickie Lee Jones or that other more recent Jones, Norah. Sure, they’re great at what they do but their style is just not my bag. Why then am I attracted […]

RECORD REVIEW: ARCADE FIRE – THE SUBURBS

ARCADE FIRE – The Suburbs Merge Buy here Driveways, bikes, porches, cul de sacs; the urban landscape of the suburbs means different things to different people. David Lynch saw it as a place of deep dark secrets with a sinister underbelly (Blue Velvet), Tim Burton as a haven of mechanical monotony and brutal impulse (Edward […]

RECORD REVIEW: MENOMENA – MINES

MENOMENA – Mines Barsuk Menomena myspace Buy here If there was a niche genre in rock to match the Intelligent Dance Music (IDM) moniker in dance, say Intelligent Rock Music or something…, Menomena would be one of the first bands that would spring to mind. A creative whirlwind since forming back ten years ago, the […]

RECORD REVIEW: WOLF PARADE – EXPO ’86

WOLF PARADE – Expo ’86 Sub Pop Buy here To say that the last five years has been a busy time for Wolf Parade’s frontmen Dan Boeckner and Spencer Krug is something of an understatement. In that time they have released together as Wolf Parade and separately through their side projects with Handsome Furs (Boeckner) […]

RECORD REVIEW: BATHS – CERULEAN

BATHS – Cerulean Anticon Buy here There has been a recent move in the genre of electronic music to embrace a more DIY and experimental guise while using traditional structures, stretching and reshaping them into the unconventional. Los Angeles artist Will Weisenfield’s foray into the field under the moniker of Baths is no exception. If […]

RECORD REVIEW: PHOSPHORESCENT – HERE’S TO TAKING IT EASY

PHOSPHORESCENT – Here’s To Taking It Easy Dead Oceans Buy here I’ve always been amazed how the genre of country music can often manage to mask the emotional pain of lost love with music that is joyous and uplifting. There’s always an air of optimism in the most harrowing of tales, if not lyrically then […]

RECORD REVIEW: TAME IMPALA – INNERSPEAKER

TAME IMPALA – Innerspeaker Modular Buy here The first few dripping notes emanating from Dominic Simper’s bass guitar and the jangling guitar work of Kevin Parker and Nick Adams on opener ‘It Is Not Meant To Be’, give the instant impression that something special is about to unfold on Tame Impala’s debut album, Innerspeaker. The […]

RECORD REVIEW: ARIEL PINK’S HAUNTED GRAFFITI – BEFORE TODAY

Back in 2005, Ariel Rosenberg, aka Ariel Pink, made a statement about his live performances that in part sums up his relationship up to now with the public domain. The one time recluse told LA Weekly, ‘People boo me everywhere…they don’t even hide their contempt. I’m used to it now. It probably comes from the […]

RECORD REVIEW: LCD SOUNDSYSTEM – THIS IS HAPPENING

James Murphy and his LCD Soundsystem are back with their third and possibly final album, This Is Happening. Having garnered massive acclaim around the traps, the LP has hit Billboard’s Dance/Electronica chart at number one knocking Gaga from her five month perch at the top with a resounding thud. What we have here are 65 […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE NATIONAL – HIGH VIOLET

It comes as little surprise that High Violet, The National’s fifth album has skyrocketed into the top echelons of the world’s mainstream album charts, currently sitting at number 3 in the US, number 2 in Canada and 5 in the UK. But don’t fear indie rock brethren, this much deserved success and attention won’t change […]

RECORD REVIEW: FLYING LOTUS – COSMOGRAMMA

There comes a point in time in the musical careers of but a few talented artists where they are at the height of their powers, and by that I mean they reach towering heights, not just measured against themselves, but against all that is outside of them. Los Angeles genre defying producer Steven Ellison, aka […]

RECORD REVIEW: CRYSTAL CASTLES – CRYSTAL CASTLES

Toronto’s Crystal Castles have made huge waves on the indie circuit of late with their massive new LP ‘Crystal Castles II’ due to be released on May 24. Following the avalanche of interest on the web, with their myspace being inundated (50 million plays) you can now purchase the whole thing on iTunes. Multi-instrumentalist Ethan Kath and vocalist Alice […]

RECORD REVIEW: BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE – FORGIVENESS ROCK RECORD

BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE – Forgiveness Rock Record Arts & Crafts Buy here I saw Broken Social Scene when they played Australia’s premier indie music festival roadshow, St Jerome’s Laneway in Adelaide back in 2008. It was a pretty special day for BSS fans as Stars preceded them and Leslie Feist was due to play a […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE RADIO DEPT. – CLINGING TO A SCHEME

THE RADIO DEPT. – Clinging To A Scheme Labrador Buy here Four long years in the making, the new album from the fiercely independent The Radio Dept, Clinging To A Scheme, finally saw the light of day last week. One may probably expect some sort of opus full of ambition and bombast after such a […]

RECORD REVIEW: CARIBOU – SWIM

CARIBOU – Swim Merge Buy here Like Kieren Hebden, Dan Snaith has become a most vital cog in the machine that is 21st Century electro-dance music second decade in. The shimmering sophisication of Swim, his third album under the Caribou moniker is further evidence of an artist taking dance music to places hitherto unexplored. Where […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE TALLEST MAN ON EARTH – THE WILD HUNT

THE TALLEST MAN ON EARTH – The Wild Hunt Gravitation/Dead Oceans Buy here In the folk genre generally, much if what is released these days follows a predictable vein where your hard pressed to find any artist that stands above any other. Outside of the strange worlds of Bill Callahan and Will Oldham who largely […]

RECORD REVIEW: FANG ISLAND – FANG ISLAND

FANG ISLAND – Fang Island Sargent House Buy here Opening and closing with bursts of pyrotechnics, Fang Island’s new album “Fang Island” is a short lived but highly worthwhile venture. At only thirty one minutes in length, we get a good dose of indie post-punk rock without the self centred embellishments. Hailing from Rhode Island […]

RECORD REVIEW: HIGH PLACES – HIGH PLACES VS. MANKIND

HIGH PLACES – High Places vs Mankind Thrill Jockey Buy here Alternating between a full on club experience, albeit one that’s not your usual fare and the experience of a morning after comedown, the second album from Los Angeles via Brooklyn duo, High Places is a confounding yet exhilirating journey, especially for those unfamiliar with […]

RECORD REVIEW: WHITE HINTERLAND – KAIROS

WHITE HINTERLAND – Kairos Dead Oceans Buy here In Greek Kairos, the title of White Hinterland’s new album means literally “supreme moment’, one which exists in a sort of suspended animation where time is cyclical not linear and from the sounds of Casey Deniel’s new direction that title is pretty appropriate. A little gem of […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE BESNARD LAKES – THE BESNARD LAKES ARE THE ROARING NIGHT

THE BESNARD LAKES – THE BESNARD LAKES ARE THE ROARING NIGHT Outside/Jagjaguwar Buy here The Montreal indie music scene is a diverse and prolific one, giving us such gems as Plants and Animals, Wolf Parade and Arcade Fire. The Besnard Lakes are no exception with their unique atmospheric take on the world around them conveyed through the lens of their […]

RECORD REVIEW: THE GO FIND – EVERYBODY KNOWS IT’S GONNA HAPPEN ONLY NOT TONIGHT

THE GO FIND – Everybody Knows It’s Gonna Happen Only Not Tonight Morr Music Buy here The third album by Belgian electronica wiz Dieter Sermeus Everybody Knows It’s Gonna Happen Only Not Tonight can seem a little underwhelming at first with its after dark minimal feel. However, that what makes it so special as Sermeus […]

RECORD REVIEW: JOANNA NEWSOM (USA) – HAVE ONE ON ME

Label: Drag City Release Date: February 23, 2010 The new triple album from Joanna Newsom, Have One On Me, all things being fair and equal, should put her high up among the very best solo artists of all time. Sure, she’s not going to sell truckloads of albums but critically Newsom has hit the upper […]

RECORD REVIEW: LOCAL NATIVES – GORILLA MANOR

Label: French Kiss Release Date: 10th February, 2010 As anyone who has been in a band for keeps knows, the writing process, when ideas are spread across a myriad of personalities with disparate ambitions and interests can be simply just damn hard work. Even harder is committing to that process, heart and soul, especially when […]

RECORD REVIEW: FOUR TET – THERE IS LOVE IN YOU

Label: Domino Release Date: 25th January, 2010 Kieran Hebden (aka Four Tet) has been making his own brand of electro experimental music for some time now. Back in 1998 he had his first venture under the moniker Four Tet with the craftily titled single ‘Thirtysixtwentyfive’, which was, yes, 36 minutes 25 seconds in length. Since […]

RECORD REVIEW: BEACH HOUSE – TEEN DREAM

Label: Sub Pop/Bella Union Release Date: January 26, 2010   When Baltimore duo Beach House lit up the musical landscape late last year and delivered a definitive knockout track in the form of the fully formed ‘Norway’ off their then yet to be released third effort Teen Dream, I couldn’t help but get excited about […]

RECORD REVIEW: OWEN PALLETT – HEARTLAND

Label: Domino Release Date: January 12, 2010 Stepping out from behind the Final Fantasy moniker he wore for his first two albums, Canadian violinist, composer and pop music extraordinaire Owen Pallett has produced with his third, Heartland, twelve tracks laden with a perfect organic fusion of pop and classical arrangements that bear the mark of a skilled yet sensitive hand. […]