Thursday, 22 March 2012

Hits From The Box #47 - Koala Maximus

Welcome children. Its been a fortnight or so since our last Hits From The Box. Ive had familial visits from over the seas, which involved travelling to Fraser Island, Rainbow Beach, and many drinking locales of Brisbane. My sister's husband had never been to Australia before either, so after showing him the night wildlife of West End (drunken smackies bitch slapping each other, crying and throwing their shirts off in the middle of Boundary Street), I thought we'd hit Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. Saw some cool shit there, something that makes you go, "Yeah, Australia has a lot of things that can kill you. But they are pretty rad little dudes." By the end of the day I wanted a pet Kelpie, platypus and koala. And a shower - animals stink.

The first band today actually isn't all that small, as their debut eponymous LP has been making a fair few waves. London trio Internet Forever were meant to release this in February but due to issues with the vinyl pressing plant (isn't this always the way?), their label Tape Alarm Records has had to stretch out the release date to April 2. That gives you a little more time to get excited about the band's scuzzy indie pop that is equal part sunshine and malaise, sugar rush and alcoholic buzz. There are ups, there are downs, and then there are the occasional hokey interludes. Don't let that dissuade you from check em out though, as Internet Forever is pretty tasty.

Internet Forever - Break Bones
Internet Forever - Pages Of Books

Keeping bands in the Mother Country, we head over to the new EP by Nitzam, a Brighton act that aim to create the woozy rock psychedelia of the 70s that doesn't walk down the dark road of the Black Angels crowd, something that at times is a little too languid, but on 'The War' in particular they fucking nail it. You can get the EP from here. Good stuff.

Nitzam - Sympathy
Nitzam - The War

I can't keep out of the UK! Brother-sister duo Hysterical Injury hail from Wales yet base themselves in the Bristol/Bath region of England. They brought out their Dead Wolf Situation LP (on Crystal Fuzz Records) back in February. It gives me a flutter because it reminds me of when I used to totally dig Veruca Salt and other college rock slash riot grrl acts of the 90s back in high school. There are darker edges, and some slower minimal tracks here (such as the quite grand 'Into The Cabin'), yet they appear most comfortable when wallowing in sex, rebellion and claustrophobia. They have supported the likes of Action Beat, Lightning Bolt, Screaming Females and That Fucking Tank, all acts that are dear to my heart and sexual to my earholes... We are heading in the same direction it seems, Gardiner siblings...

Hysterical Injury - Cycle One
Hysterical Injury - Into The Cabin

Now we are fleeing the British Isles for Israel's Volcania Dread. I have to admit that I do not like the opening track 'Take Your Time' from their Blitz Mix EP. Yet the last two tracks, 'Scraping' and 'Give And GiveUp', are an interesting merge of The Strokes/Phoenix like sunny hysteria as done by John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees if he was in a cutting shapes kinda mood. The trio (GAL - position: vocals/using: shure 59/substance: vodka; ITAY - position: drums/using: ludwig supraphonic/substance: ritalin; AMIT - position: guitars/using: 52 tele/substance: ganja) are a lot of fun indeed.

Volcania Dread - Scraping

Weirdly, we are straddling the US and the UK for this one. Newish London-based independent label Wee Pop have put out their first artist release, a band from Brooklyn called The Hairs, who ply eloquent yet quirky guitar pop as their trade. The Hairs make good hearted music, but with an edge - their PR says it all that it's like "dropping your ice cream cone and still eating it." Their 7" is limited to 300 copies, but it is red vinyl, and pretty tasty to boot.

The Hairs - I've Been Working Out

In the past I have loved everything that French label Bookmaker Records has put out (see here and here for some goddamn awesomeness), and their next release is no different. Good Morning, Africa is their first 12" release, and it features the multiple talents of Michael James Tapscott (lead singer of Odawas). It is 35 minutes of folk ballads, hazy drones and new age / ambient meditations, with Tapscott getting some help out in the field with ambient recorder Andrew Kenower. Worthy picking up this one...

Michael James Tapscott - Who'll Stop The Rain


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