The JangleBox

Indie, Noise, Shoegaze… Music

Reina Republicana: El Despertar (Limbo Starr, 2015)

“El despertar” (Limbo Starr, 2015), segundo álbum de los pamploneses REINA REPUBLICANA, ha sido gestado de una manera intensa con la firme intención de ampliar las fronteras del reino republicano hacia sonidos más psicodélicos con destellos kraut y dream pop, siempre dentro de los cauces que ya mostraron en su homónimo álbum de debut: melodías pop con aristas convertidas en caramelos envenenados.
El álbum ha sido grabado y producido por Hans Krüger y Jon Aguirrezabalaga, y mezclado por Joaquín Pizarro en Red Led (Madrid).
Sus diez canciones son la selección y depuración de un repertorio en el que, tomando como referencia los sonidos y bandas que les han movido y fascinado, han definido un sonido propio que a su vez los emparenta con sus ídolos. En el disco hay guiños a Broadcast y Stereolab, Sonic Boom o Tame Impala, My Bloody Valentine y The Jesus and Mary Chain; incluso a los mejores Strokes. Grupos y artistas que a su vez siguieron el mismo proceso y así hasta el infinito; asimilando e interpretando la influencia de una manera personal. En “El despertar” las guitarras suenan presentes y a veces muy distorsionadas, los sintetizadores juegan un papel principal, la voz de Maite ocupa un espacio más etéreo y las bases han sido trabajadas para sonar con personalidad y alma; teniendo también su espacio la electrónica.
Las letras son esenciales, y para ello han contado con la colaboración de amigos y compañeros (admirados igualmente) como Sebas Puente de Tachenko o el “experto” Manu Ferrón, que firma las dos que abren el disco, incluyendo el primer single extraído (“Ahora que hace bueno”) y que ayudan a definir un disco que, desde su título, evocador y esperanzador, nos propone un nuevo y mejor renacer, sin olvidar donde estamos ni de donde venimos, pero con cabida para la evasión y el hedonismo” (Prensa)

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31 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Reina Republicana | Deja un comentario

Wipe: Wipe (Ep, 2015)

Wipe

Otro de esos intrigantes proyectos de Bedroom-Pop que nos llega desde los Usa y que de alguna forma nos desconcierta puesto que apenas aparecen informaciones ni datos sobre la música de este chico del que se dice que llega de una ciudad de Michigan. 
Su sonido se mueve plácidamente y a gusto entre el Dream-Gaze y las influencias electrónicas. Un Ep más que disfrutable.

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30 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Wipe | Deja un comentario

Morels: Lemonseeds (Ep, 2015)

Indie arrastrado, sensación de melancolía generalizada, un tono vital algo gris y un tono plácidamente noventero. 

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29 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Morels | Deja un comentario

A Place to Bury Strangers: Transfixiation (Dead Oceans, 2015)

A Place To Bury Strangers vuelven a sacar todo el arsenal de pedaleras de distorsión, de artilugios y de juguetes chirriantes para dar forma al que es su cuarto trabajo. Un álbum que no epata al igual que sus predecesores: han perdido ese efecto sorpresa de sus primeros discos y ciertamente, se pierden en un piélago de distorsión algo crepitante que no ofrece demasiadas insinuaciones para adentrarse en su música a aquel que no esté demasiado familiarizado en el género…

“It’s not a huge shift from 2012’s relatively streamlined Worship, which itself wasn’t a huge shift from its predecessor Exploding Head. APTBS’ progress has been incremental over the years, so Transfixiation derives much of its success from being compared to their 2007 breakthrough— those who have been following since A Place to Bury Strangers can recognize the band’s evolution and justify their own investment. Those who are coming intoTransfixiation blind might just hear a notable band boasting a currently rare commitment to an ’80s kind of noise-rock rather than the ’90s iterations of shoegaze, goth, or industrial that’s more prominent in 2015.
Then again, APTBS’ progress as a band only serves to expose the underlying one-dimensionality of their actual songwriting. This is a style of music rarely lauded for its lyrics in general, let alone its topical range—it’s probably too much to ask for a political A Place to Bury Strangers song or a tripartite prog epic, or a gooey love note just to shake things up. But for a band whose songs so frequently draw on the depths of despair, incapacitating depression, and occasional kink for inspiration, the grousing of Transfixiation feels perfunctory. However admirable “Filling the Void”, “I’m So Clean” and “Love High” are for their sonic formalism, the songs themselves are like fortune cookies filled with quotes from latter day Trent Reznor or the @sosadtoday Twitter feed.
Case in point, “Deeper”—a generous reading would frame it as a devastating parody. An accurate reading would frame it as the six-minute nadir of APTBS’ fourth album. The chorus goes, “Deeper, deeper, deeper still/ Deeper than the deepest well,” which isn’t the funniest part only because Ackermann adopts a Christian Bale-as-Batman baritone to taunt, “if you fuck with me, you’re gonna burn” right before it. Occasionally, APTBS traffic in a speedfreak roadhouse blues that recall a mondo distorted version of Suicide; conversely, “Deeper” is the first song ever to be conceivably inspired by Rollins Band’s legendary high comic cover of“Ghost Rider”. If The Crow: 2037 ends up getting a release, “Deeper” would do well to soundtrack the rain-soaked resurrection of whoever that year’s version of Edward Furlong happens to be.
But zone out from “Deeper” and, combined with its instrumental successor “Lower Zone”,Transfixiation is capable sludge-goth ambience. Regardless of its issues, it never distracts from intimating the same old points: Ackermann makes expensive guitar pedals and the band plays with a ferocity that will make theirs the only show you’ll want to see for the next month—and due to its ear-splitting volume, maybe the only show you’ll physically be able to hear for a month. So whenever the temptation to lend a closer ear to Transfixiation arises, you should know better by now” (Pitchfork)

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28 agosto, 2015 Posted by | A Place to Bury Strangers | Deja un comentario

Tomorrows Tulips: When (Burger Records, 2015)

Tomorrows Tulips: When

Tomorrow Tulips son algo así como el culmen de la experiencia LoFi llevada al límite rozando con influencias que podrían ir desde Pavement a la Velvet Underground, a la vez que componen temas sobre temáticas mundanas o utilizando un sentido del humor bastante personal. Aunque el disco en su totalidad resulta un tanto árido, tiene momentos destacados…

“The opening track, “Baby,” is one of the obvious exceptions to this tendency, but it’s quickly followed by “Surplus Store,” which is, essentially, a character study in song form. The character: that guy who shops at the surplus store that gives the song the name. You know the one I’m talking about. His life hasn’t worked out the way he wanted it to so far, and he might be dangerous, but at the same time he might just be kind of upset and thrifty. “He’s a dirtbag revolutionary,” Tomorrows Tulips sing, and while it’s not an approving portrait, it is a sympathetic one. And that sympathy sets off a thread of social criticism that runs throughout the breadth of the record. When is a product of this particular moment in American politics, economics and culture just as much as the band’s members are, and When doesn’t shy away from addressing that reality now and then.
“Laying in the Sun,” veers back towards romance, or at least into the neighborhood of romance, taking aim at what is either love lost or lost love (the distinction is never made quit clear). “Don’t you look good laying in the sun? / How come you won’t come along / when I’m the guy that wants to see you / have fun?” the singer asks, and it’s not at first clear whether or not he’s just perving on some random sunbather, but the eventual suffix to a few verses of lamentation is, “like when we were young,” and the addition adds a sense of yearning. That sense is intensified when the lyrics end significantly before the song does, and are instead replaced by a semi-baroque use of strings. The added violin to the tail end of the track, which starts as scruffy and energetic as the rest of the record, gives the song a stateliness that provides an interesting counterpoint to the general tenor of the record.
“Favorite Episode” is one of the more experimental tracks on the album, a slow-moving behemoth of layered sounds, starting with the long slow drip of water into a cool puddle and then building into a long, lazy instrumental section before stopping short for a two second pause directly in the middle of the song, and coming back with a faster tempo, the distorted sound of the violin, and a brief stanza or so highlighting or perhaps inserting the absurdity of the way we consume media (“season finale on / the weather channel / your favorite episode is on / where the sun never shines,”) before trailing off in a final forty seconds of off-key strumming and picking out individual notes.
Other highlights of the album include “I Lay In My Bed,” which is a piece of slacker-pop almost as poignantly universal to anyone in the world who loves their bed as “I’m Only Sleeping,” and “Glued To You,” which reads like a direct and conscious response to The Velvet Underground’s “I’m Sticking With You,” right down to the slow-steady beat and murmured, indistinct and uncanny backing vocals which could have come straight out of the build-up (but not the climax) of a very low-budget horror movie. The oblique menace is supported by the way it’s unclear whether the breathy chorus line “Stay glued to you” is a threat or a promise, and is fulfilled when the song smashes to a stop in sudden silence.
Essentially, When is sunny, lo-fi garage-rock at its finest, and an endlessly entertaining listen” (In Your Speakers)

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27 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Tomorrows Tulips | Deja un comentario

Low Litas: Low Litas (2014)

Con un nombre como éste, era impensable que no desviara mi atención hacia el disco de debut de este trío de Tulsa. Un trabajo que (sinceramente) tampoco nos va a descubrir nada nuevo: mucho Noise, mucho guitarreo Grunge a lo Veruca Salt, pero una cierta escasez de temas redondos o construidos con esmero. Más fuego de artificio que munición real.

“It’s an album predicated on love and vulnerability; lust, hostility and melancholy are all swirled into one maelstrom of guitar fuzz and piercing lyrics. Larsen and Pitchlynn stand virtually invincible together, ready to quell, conquer and overcome each and every trouble the two should face, hand in hand and note for note.
It’s possible to write such songs with strangers or friends, but it’s much easier when the bonds run deeper, as heard in standouts like “So Sure,” “Leave the Rest” and “Knocked Up Cheerleader.” They — and the bulk of the self-titled record’s offerings — aim for the likes of My Bloody Valentine, Pixies and Slowdive and succeed because of the fervent passion and desire at the core of it all. It’s the opposite of hollow gestures; these are densely real and emotional cuts that play like deep, late-night conversations about the possibilities of life and love.
Opener “Busted” is a little lankier and tonally stale, at least in comparison to the strong string of nine songs to follow. “Closer” is a little awkward at first, too, before quickly finding its footing and eventually contributing some of the biggest moments of the record as a whole. “Go On,” however, is Low Litas at their very best: ’90s college- rock guitar twitches collide with a towering shoegaze composition in a way that suggests the band will thrive well beyond state borders.
“Go On” is followed by the quiet, acoustic-based refrain (and album closer) “Delores,” a pairing that becomes a literal demonstration of what and who Low Litas are, unmasking a tough, confident strata of noise to reveal the sweetly sensitive soul at its center” (Oklahoma Gazette)

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26 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Low Litas | Deja un comentario

Twerps: Range anxiety (Merge, 2015)

Tomando de aquí y de allí, del C86, del Kiwi-Rock, de la inspiración del Pop de los 80 y bandas como The Go Betweens, Rem, The Pastels o The Magnetic Fields, la banda aussie Twerps han publicado su segundo álbum: Range anxiety, un precioso disco de Jangle-Pop en el que la sensibilidad de los australianos está presente en cada corte.

“That neither Frawley nor co-vocalist Julia Macfarlane have their shit together is hardly to their detriment. So there’s a distinct comic element during “Back to You” when Frawley expresses envy at someone out there sipping iced tea and living free. At no point does Frawley seem bothered by any pressing obligation, but his foil does not share the constant incapacitation as a result of the girl who keeps walking out of his life. “It all keeps coming back to you,” Frawley sings on a chorus that could pass for the main sentiment on over half of Range Anxiety and one that finds a comfort in the predictability of despair—it’s a toast of the one beer that becomes the “one too many.”
Still, Range Anxiety goes by in an instant, makes minimal demands, and is remarkably enjoyable for its simple pleasures. It may not have the heft to move you, but it’s gentle and never unwelcome. Classic jangle-rock hooks lodge in your head without taking up much space. The lyrics are simple expressions of feelings and there is a song called “Simple Feelings”. The bulk of the record consists of post-breakup laments delivered with an insouciance that can be confused with cheer; they could just as easily find themselves on a mix prepared for a future crush.
It all comes so naturally to Twerps that Range Anxiety could be considered effortless as a pejorative, which is why “I Don’t Mind” is not only their best song to date, but also their most important. As the first proper track on Range Anxiety and one of two tracks over five minutes, it towers over the proceedings. It’s a committed and extroverted song about not caring about the outside world, one that evokes big bands like the Velvet Underground andU2, a song that simmers rather than pops and fizzes, that plays Frawley and Macfarlane’s voices for contrast when they otherwise conspire to share the same shrugging views on social demands.
Range Anxiety could use more of the emotional ballast provided by “I Don’t Mind”, even if it doesn’t necessarily need it. Some will hear the album as perfectly breezy, others might consider it featherweight. But this isn’t entirely the fault of Twerps—they just don’t have much of a desire to present their music as autobiography. Hook-for-hook and chime-for-chime, it matches up with the most recent work of Real Estate and Mac DeMarco, 2014’s kings of college quad indie. But while Atlas and Salad Days made a point to stress their reckoning with parenthood, aging, the demands of art and other adult topics, Twerps all but admit Range Anxiety was inspired by a rock’n’roll, on-the-dole lifestyle that leaves vast gaps for drinking and alone time. Which is what a lot of people grappling with family and work pine for anyway, and the predictability and reliability of Range Anxiety just means it’s always there when you need it” (Pitchfork)

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25 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Twerps | Deja un comentario

Seven Tin Stars: Goodbye stars (daylight is coming) (2015)

SEVEN TIN STARSCaleidoscopio, viaje, mezcolanza… varias palabras se nos pueden venir a la mente tras escuchar el sonido de esta banda gijonesa. Un bonito paseo por lo mejor del Dreamgaze en temazos como el que da título: Goodbye stars, en el que se mezclan por igual phasers y distorsiones creando una ambientación mágica o el que se nos propone en Skyline to reorder. Los teclados que cierran Heart and thorn, que al escucharlos nos retrotraen a épocas de melotrones mágicos. O ese maravilloso Pyscho-Trip titulado Summer of ´42/Beach house. Ensoñación made in Spain.

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24 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Seven Tin Stars | Deja un comentario

Space Daze: Capture a thing (2015)

El Bedroom-Pop llevado a otra dimensión, más cercana al Pop Barroco o al Pop más delicado, con rasgos auténticamente sublimes.

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23 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Space Daze | Deja un comentario

Kingdom of The Holy Sun: Getting higher (Single, 2015)

“Referring to their music as Psychedelic Shamanistic Madness, Seattle’s Kingdom of the Holy Sun have carved out a sound steeped in vintage garage sensibility. Building upon their past releases, with The Return of the Sun Kings, the band has achieved a uniquely rich organic connection with each instrument an essential ingredient in achieving a majestic internal coherence. Today’s featured song, “Getting Higher”, is the album’s midpoint and a full-bodied THC-induced workout. Carried rhythmically with its head nodding backbeat, the track quickly opens up to a wall of tasty phychedelic sound, dipped in a drastic elements while keeping a consistent melodic heart. Breaking the surface in hazy string drenched sunshine, the loving bite of guitars and laissez faire vocals keep the track invigoratingly fresh and full of yesteryear wonder, like a stoned teenage memory” (Press)

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22 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Kingdom of the Holy Sun | Deja un comentario

Exiles: Dawn Patrol (Single, Beautiful Strange, 2015)

Una fresca sensación de Jangle fusionada con ecos Shoegazers y reverberaciones propias de las mejores producciones del género. Anticipo de un Ep que aparecerá en la peor época del año para los lanzamientos discográficos: a finales de Agosto.

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21 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Exiles | Deja un comentario

Beach Day: Native echoes (Kanine Records, 2014)

Beach Day decidieron continuar la fórmula que les dio resultados en su primer trabajo: un indudable sabor a Retro-Pop, esos pequeños muros de sonido acompañados de esas voces y coros propias del Girl-Pop y un inconfundible aroma a añejo. Mientras que dicha fórmula continúe funcionando, por qué no seguir con ella…

“After releasing an impressive debut, 2013’s Trip Trap Attack, that fused garage punk energy, girl group melodrama, and plenty of classic pop songcraft, Beach Day returned a mere year later with another fun and frolicsome album. Native Echoes doesn’t fool around much with the formula; the songs are still pretty simple, Kimmy Drake‘s strong vocals are still the focal point, and Jim Diamond‘s production adds a little bit of sweetening around the edges without turning the songs syrupy. The record may lack the raw energy of the first, but it makes up for it with better arrangements and a more focused approach. And some great songs. The first three are complete knockouts; the stormy pop of “All My Friends Were Punks,” the lilting girl group swagger of “Don’t Call Me on the Phone,” and the melancholy swoon of “BFF’s” are impossible to ignore, especially if you like your pop with runny mascara and big old hooks. The rest of the album has plenty of highlights too, the swaying prom rocker “The Lucky One” and the surfy, organ-filled “Fades Away” being the most notable. The starkly beautiful ballad “Lost Girl” is a beautiful feature for Drake‘s lovely voice too, showing that she could probably sing some “real” music if the garage pop lark doesn’t work out. On these tracks the duo of Drake and Skyler Black really seem to have a firm grasp on all the elements of making really good pop music. Unfortunately, the album is weakened by a few really duff-sounding songs that keep it from being the great leap forward it could have been. There’s really not much excuse for adding a song as rudimentary and silly as “I’m Just Messin’ Around” or as filler-y as the short surf instrumental “Gnarly Waves.” Subtract these two songs and bump up the fidelity of the album’s last song, “How Do You Sleep at Night,” and the album would have been a killer. As it is, Native Echoes is another fun-filled, slightly flawed garage pop album that shows lots of promise and almost delivers on it” (All Music)

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20 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Beach Day | Deja un comentario

Them Vibes: Mamma´s gotta secret (Single, 2015)

Si he de ser sincero, tengo que confesaros, que el riff inicial de este Mamma´s gotta secret me sonó en seguida al de Last train to Clarksville, y éso siempre es bueno. Aunque el tema no tiene nada que ver con aquél, este sencillo de Them Vibes tiene personalidad suficiente y energía Pop como para resultar arrebatador desde su comienzo.

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20 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Them Vibes | Deja un comentario

Swervedriver: I wasn´t born to lose you (Cobraside, 2015)

Time Capsule Trips

Ante un disco de la magnitud de I wasn´t born to lose you (Cobraside, 2015), sencillamente, me quedo con pocas palabras. Emoción, quizás sea el vocablo con el que resumir un trabajo tan majestuoso, tan enorme, tan pulcro, tan genial… Llevo varias semanas escuchándolo y no encuentro nunca el momento adecuado para compartiros mi opinión sobre él. Tengo temor a no ser justo y a no saber encontrar las palabras adecuadas para hablar sobre su grandeza.
Podría deciros que Swervedriver han vuelto tras diecisiete años y lo han retomado prácticamente en el mismo lugar en el que lo dejaron. Como dice mi amigo Carlos de Discos Pensados: “mirando atrás con la vista hacia delante” 
Podría deciros que Swervedriver han conseguido lo que pocos: llegar a un punto de plenitud y madurez tras varios años de silencio, enseñando el camino a bandas como Cheatahs, que beben directamente de sus aguas, de sus guitarras imperiales, de sus distorsiones, de sus riffs inmaculados…
Pues bien, todo ello sale a la luz en I wasn´t born to lose you. Para quienes hemos hecho (o intentado hacer) música es muy difícil facturar temas como Deep wound, Autodidact, Last rites, Setting sun, For a day like tomorrow, English subtitles, Everso
No hay puntos débiles en este disco inmenso. Sólamente emoción, viajes, distorsión, melodías tremendas, un sentido de la musicalidad absolutamente epatante… 
El mejor disco de lo que va de año, sin duda, esta cápsula del tiempo en forma de canciones.

“The reunited four-piece has been playing together again for nearly seven years, and that time shows in the taut rhythms and zippering guitar from founding members Adam Franklin and Jimmy Hartridge. Opener “Autodidact” puts that wizardry on immediate display, the two guitarists sounding like rotating bandsaws at some points and crystalline raindrops at others. The woozy, punchy “Red Queen Arms Race” puts more bass into their blunt fuzz, as Franklin’s vocals get sucked through a black hole and pushed back out the other side along with a distorted blues solo. The elegiac “I Wonder?” pushes a by-the-book shoegaze structure, but the quartet clearly knows how to make hay even in this somewhat faded sunshine.
Rather than fit a grand reunion narrative with their return, Swervedriver sound refreshed yet uncertain what to do next — and they’re alright with that. I Wasn’t Born to Lose Youlikely won’t replace any fan’s favorite Swervedriver album, but much like the entire shoegaze revival, it’s an organic, heartfelt piece meant for those fans as much as the musicians making it” (Consequence of Sound)

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US Late Summer Tour Dates

Late Summer US Tour
08/29 Denver, CO – National Western (Riot Fest) (changed from the 28th)
** cancelled ** 08/29 Omaha, NE – Reverb Lounge ** cancelled **
08/30 Kansas City, MO – Record Bar
08/31 Columbia, MO – Rose Music Hall
09/01 Louisville, KY – Headliners Music Hall
09/02 Columbus, OH – Skully’s Music Diner
09/03 Pittsburgh, PA – Club Cafe
09/04 Baltimore, MD – Ottobar
09/05 New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom
09/06 Cambridge, MA – The Sinclair
09/08 Buffalo, NY – Waiting Room
09/09 Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop
09/10 Ann Arbor, MI – Bling Pig
09/12 Chicago, IL – Douglas Park (Riot Fest)
09/13 Chicago, IL – Bottom Lounge
09/14 Nashville, TN – Exit/In
09/15 Asheville, NC – The Mothlight
09/16 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club
09/17 Birmingham, AL – Saturn
09/18 New Orleans, LA – House Of Blues – The Parish
09/19 San Antonio, TX – Paper Tiger
09/20 Houston, TX – House of Blues – Bronze
09/21 Austin, TX – The Parish
09/23 Phoenix, AZ – Valley Bar
09/24 Las Vegas, NV – TBD (due to Bunkhouse closure)
09/25 Costa Mesa, CA – Maison
09/26 Pioneertown, CA – Pappy and Harriets (Desert Stars Festival)
09/27 Santa Barbara, CA – Velvet Jones
09/28 San Diego, CA – Casbah
10/01 Honolulu, HI – The Replublik

Japan in Fall

10/6 Osaka – SOMA
10/7 Nagoya – APOLLO BASE
10/8 Tokyo – DUO MUSIC EXCHANGE
10/10 Sapporo – SPIRITUAL LOUNGE

18 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Swervedriver | Deja un comentario

Lost Tapes: Lost in You (Box Bedroom Records, Ep, 2015)

Una bonita mixtura de C86, Pop, Psicodelia, Shoegaze, Noise… hacen de este dúo Valenciano-Catalán una de las propuestas más interesantes del panorama Indie patrio de los últimos tiempos.

“Lost Tapes es un nuevo grupo que desde la más absoluta independencia ha conseguido que sus canciones se publiquen en diferentes singles y recopilatorios en sellos internacionales como Candy Twist Records (Holanda), EardrumsPop (Noruega), Beko Disques (Francia), Cloudberry Records (USA) o Box Bedroom Rebels (UK). 
Su claro carácter internacional les ha llevado a actuar en salas y festivales de Inglaterra, Alemania, Dinamarca y EEUU (allí llevan más de 20 conciertos, incluyendo festivales como el Popfest de NY, Slingshot de Athens o SXSW de Austin). Han colaborado con el grupo japonés Wallflower, y una de sus canciones sonará en la próxima película francesa de Sébastien Petretti.
En junio se edita el disco “We thought it was ok at the time”, que reunirá las mejores canciones publicadas hasta el momento, en el sello Shelflife (que descubrió a Radio Dept a los americanos).
En los próximos meses encaran la expansión definitiva de su sonido junto al productor Nacho Marco, con el que grabarán su primer disco oficial ya para Mushroom Pillow.
Nacho Marco, capo de Loudeast Records, tiene una gran trayectoria como DJ y productor. Muy reconocido en el ámbito del techno y el house, sus lanzamientos para sellos de todo el mundo han sido referente de Laurent Garnier, Faithless o Francois K” (Mushroom Pillows)

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17 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Lost Tapes | Deja un comentario

Plastic Macca: Sensation / Is Here (2015)

El nuevo proyecto del inquieto Roger Haudaille (Ex-Norwegian) se llama Plastic Macca. Se trata de un proyecto de Bedroom-Pop registrado con medios y con muy buen gusto. Aunque, personalmente, más que Plastic Macca, yo lo hubiera llamado Plastic Badfinger, pues las semejanzas sonoras con el Pop más setentero son más cercanas que el eclecticismo que caracteriza al genio de Liverpool.
Sea como fuere, nos encontramos ante algo interesante: dos discos de debut, aunque personalmente, creo que Sensation tiene un punto más popero, más Kinksiano. Dos nuevas vías de escape para la creatividad de Roger, quien nos ha alegrado en múltiples ocasiones previas con la discografía de subanda matriz.

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New Times: First off, does this solo effort mean you’re an ex-Ex Norwegian? What’s the status of the band? And why an individual outing?
Roger Houdaille: I wouldn’t exactly call myself an ex-Ex Norwegian yet, but I would call this a side project. Ex Norwegian is technically still around but just not very active at this point. After the release of the fifth album, which was only a few months ago, there was burnout. There was a whole lot of time and energy put into promoting it, but once the performance schedule started slowing down, it made the need to take a break a bit inevitable. The idea of a side project came about simply to have some fun again. Originally Ex Norwegian was scheduled to play Bufu Fest this past January at Churchill’s, but instead I created Plastic Macca and invited some friends to do a set. And in our set, we just did songs that I liked — not originals but songs that often don’t get covered, such as the Zombies’ “Care of Cell 44” or the Kinks “I’m on an Island.” Now, with the release of these albums, it’s serving as more of a semiproper outlet for my solo songwriting and recording pursuits.

What’s the significance of Plastic Macca? Is that a reference to Paul McCartney’s nickname? The name of your new band?
It’s a bit of an inside joke for those who follow the “Paul Is Dead” trail. Plastic Macca is the nickname for the supposed Paul replacement, the guy who, since 1966, has supposedly been standing in for the cute Beatle. As a band name, it’s not meant to suggest a weird Beatles tribute or anything. It’s just another one of my questionable choices for monikers, really. And for the record, I personally believe Macca is the same Macca he’s always been and he himself is the one behind the hoax. That may explain why he still gets asked about it on major TV interviews to this day. It’s pretty clever stuff when you look at it from a marketing angle.
How did you go about writing the material and conceptualizing these two albums? What was different than the motive you exercised with Ex Norwegian?
There was no real plan at first, except to spend a week or so writing and recording new material. I wanted to have a hand at doing the kinda stuff I was doing many years ago, which seems to be finally “in” now. In fact, one of the songs is a four-track recording from my old high school days. Fernando Perdomo [guitarist/producer] played drums on it way back then, and he’s back again for most of theSensation album, which makes this project a reunion of sorts. It’s funny that after so many years we find ourselves doing things just like we did when we started. I don’t know if it’s a good thing or not, but at least we are still able to do it and have some fun with it.
Were you influenced by anyone special this time around?
Someone told me they could hear I was channeling certain artists, and that was nice feedback, because I did do that. However, I had no idea it would actually come across that way. The song “Art” is my take on the Kinks, for example. Obviously Paul McCartney would be another one to name-check. But in general, these albums are inspired by the ‘60s and ‘70s, right down to the mixing style.
Why two solo albums at once? 
I actually put Sensation out in February, but I felt it had two vibes on it, so I went back and reorganized and expanded it into two records. Sensation is more in the ‘60s British pop psych-meets-American garage vein, and Is Here is a bit scattered around the place but has ‘70s art-rock glam at its heart. I describe something like “Cool Kids” as Velvet Underground meets Loudon Wainwright III over drinks with Bowie. If I had patience, I probably could have expanded that record into a couple more niche records, but two debut albums should suffice.
What’s the plan from here? Solo touring? More work with Ex Norwegian?
There will be more from both projects, hopefully. I’d like the next Ex Norwegian thing to be big, so that will take some time to make it happen. And as much as I’d love to, I don’t think I can tour Plastic Macca at the moment. The records didn’t cost much to do and to release digitally, so expect some more of those before the year is over.
How would you rate South Florida in terms of its embrace for bands and artists like you that actually do original music?
South Florida is tough. There are some types of music that thrive here, but not so much in terms of what I’m up to. My audience tends to be pretty far away from Florida.
Anything else you’d like to add? Any local gigs coming up?
There’s an Ex Norwegian gig at Clandestino Pub in South Beach on May 8. We’re done promoting the last album, Wasted Lines, and so we’re gearing up to start celebrating Ex Norwegian’s seven-year anniversary this summer. We’ll be throwing in lots of classics we haven’t played in a while” (New Times Broaward Palm Beach)

16 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Plastic Macca | Deja un comentario

The Pocket Gods: The Curse Of Oak Island (Nub Country Records, 2015)

“The Curse Of Oak Island” – is a concept album based on the legend of the Money Pit and the so called curse which haunts Oak Island in Nova Scotia. Legends say that the Money Pit contains buried treasure stolen by The Knights Templar from the Temple Of Solomon and may even contain the Ark Of The Covenant or The Holy Grail.
 Musically it’s a psychedelic mash up of country, pop, break-beats and indie pop – think the Byrds meets, Beck and The Beatles on a road trip in a Transit van owned by The Fall. It also features narration from broadcasting legend Howard Hughes.
 As Tom Robinson’s Freshnet website states; “The Pocket Gods are ready to take on the established Brit-rock hierarchy.”

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14 agosto, 2015 Posted by | The Pocket Gods | Deja un comentario

Wozniak: Auster (Ep, Morningside Young Team, 2015)

Wozniak es una banda de Edimburgo que realizan una especie de Post-Shoegaze de eminentes rasgos guitarreros y no exento de cierto grado de épica. Un viaje cinemático a través del Shoegaze instrumental que explota convenientemente el formato Ep, que quizás sea el que más convenga a su sonido.

“A sonic trip through layers of psychedelic shoegaze intertwined with immense cinematic post-rock flashes” (Primal Radio Blog)

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13 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Wozniak | Deja un comentario

La Casa Al Mare: This astro (Ep, 2015)

La Casa Al Mare son una banda romana novel pero ello no quiere decir no experta pues sus miembros son antiguos componentes de bandas como Sea Dweller, My Violent EgoLa Calle Mojada.  
No esconden sus influencias (son adoradores de MBV) pero contribuyen al enriquecimiento contemporáneo del género, y practican un Shoegaze de guitarras, con tremendas influencias del Fuzz más ruidoso. Más que interesantes…

“The trio (Marco Poloni on vocals/bass, Paolo Miceli on drums, with Alessio Pindinelli on guitar and vocals) don’t hide their influences, ‘This Astro‘ overtly borrows from the 90s. The My Bloody Valentine influence is clear, however they do add enough of their own charm to make it their own. It could also be argued that La Casa al Mare have much stronger vocal chords than their forefathers *dodges rotten tomatoes*. I suppose that’s how the sound has evolved, ‘This Astro‘ capitalizes on the gorgeous sonic swells but supports them with catchy melodies (that aren’t overdone). The EP doesn’t bury too many sounds in the mix, you can still make out what’s going on, and there’s not an over indulgence in lo-fi aesthetics either.
‘I Don’t Want To’ gets the EP off to a punchy start. It’s a short blast of swooning tremolos and melodic haze which runs into ‘Sunflowers’, a reminder that, all this distortion and naval gazing doesn’t have to be depressing! Its choruses are light and positive, one of the highlights. ‘At All’ (first public stream above), is a straight ahead indie rocker that bridges into the sedate ‘Tonight Or Never’, a dream pop lullaby that shows us what La Casa al Mare sound like without all the fuzz. ‘CD Girl’ is an unassuming song, it washes over you without the same hooks as the other singles but is still a strong entry. The CD bonus cut ‘This Astro‘ is their most experimental work yet, a five minute instrumental. It’s filled with reverb heavy sounds jutting into the mix. It forms a dissonant cacophony mid way, and almost falls into a heap before wondering into the fade out” (Sounds Better with Reverb)

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12 agosto, 2015 Posted by | La Casa Al Mare | Deja un comentario

Woodpigeon & Norman Blake: Brutish birds / Tokyo room (Wiaiwya-7777777 seven inch Singles Club, 2015)

Wiaiwya

“Hoy el mundo es, sin duda, un sitio mejor de lo que era ayer”. Preciosa intro para presentar este sencillo de Woodpigeon y Norman Blake (sin presentaciones). Los temas se lo merecen y son pequeñas maravillas de Pop de tintes acústicos que podría estar oyendo sin cesar una y otra vez.

“The Woodpigeon and Norman Blake 45 is the sound of the Laurel Canyon recorded on a feather, with a bit of Prefab Sprout and Fairport Convention added for good measure; delicate wispy harmonies, intimate acoustic instrumentation, and that West Coast thing that Glaswegians do so well.
Woodpigeon is fundamentally Mark Andrew Hamilton writing songs. Starting off in Edinburgh (with members of eagleowl), then moving to Canada for the band’s first full-length album, entitled Songbook, released in late 2006. Three years later the second long player, Treasury Library Canada c/w Houndstooth Europa was long-listed for the Polaris Prize, and Hamilton served as the curator of the first annual Sled Island Festival in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
2010 saw the band’s third album, Die Stadt Muzikanten, then 2012 marked a move to Vienna and 2013 the release of Thumbtacks + Glue on Fierce Panda.
Woodpigeon has collaborated with over 70 musicians, and has played alongside Withered Hand, Ólöf Arnalds, Broken Social Scene, Patrick Wolf, Iron and Wine, Grizzly Bear, and Calexico, has appeared as part of Ray Davies’ Meltdown, and played Iceland Airwaves festival twice.
Of course Norman Blake needs no introduction, but here goes anyway: Norman has been recording hits since the Boy Hairdressers ep in 1986, after a stint in the BMX Bandits he formed Teenage Fanclub in 1989, two years later they released one of the best albums of the 90’s – Bandwagonesque… aside from 10 Fanclub LPs (with another in the pipeline) Norman has recorded with Joe Pernice, Euros Childs, Jad Fair, the Pastels, Tenniscoats, Kevin Ayers, Bill Wells, The Reindeer Section, Snowgoose, Yeon Gene and The Pearlfishers.
Today we’re adding Woodpigeon to that list” (Wiaiwya)

11 agosto, 2015 Posted by | Norman Blake, Woodpigeon | Deja un comentario

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