Wednesday 7 March 2012

Hits From The Box #46 - Swimming Siblings

My sister and her husband (that is still such a strange thing for me to say, seeing as I have known Si well over this time, and obviously Ive known Sara even longer, so the thought of them married at all, let alone to each other, boggles the mind...) have arrived from the UK for a bit of a trip. This weekend we had booked to go to Rainbow Beach and Fraser Island, but with the weather still playing its dastardly tricks, we might well find ourselves floating in dinghies saving stranded wallabies. It's a weirds world all right. Well, if all else fails, we have music. They have great taste, those two (awww). And here are a few artists that might help fend off the rising floodwaters...

Sydney ambient artist Oliver Tank has had a meteoric rise. After winning a prize on a local community radio station, he found himself playing his first festival - at Iceland Airwaves. Although this isn't that surprising when you hear his music - it has that aural planetary weightlessness that Icelandic acts like Mum are renowned for. Riding high after the success of EP Dreams, Tank at the tender age of 22 is marking his claim on the ambient throne.

Oliver Tank - Up All Night
Oliver Tank - Last Night I Heard Everything In Slow Motion

When a band describes themselves as an experimental gospel no wave soul pulp band, you sit up and take notice. Algiers is a trio displaced in more than one notion, as they also come from the US, yet find themselves ensconced in London. Also referred to fittingly as "doom soul", Algiers are unlike anything you have likely heard. It is hard to work out exactly why this works too - but the more you listen, the more it becomes fused with your being. Their Blood 7" has the titular track, labelled as "a solemn slave-folk incantation set against the depraved atonal wail of Roland S. Howard, Glenn Branca, and Watts ’65", whilst B-side ‘Black Eunuch’ gurgles with the tension of punk gospel impotence, billowing to bursting before succumbing to an Axelrod/Greenwood orchestral relent. Call it whatever you want - it is what it is. And what it is is damn fine music.

Mirror Lady are an eclectic three piece devoted to constructing artful, non-linear pop that still lingers in the shadows of the greats. The band developed from a microscopic level, having molded their sound after meeting each other some years ago. But this is no Monkees like construction, it is as organic as you can imagine. The resultant 6-song EP offers up an earnestness, yet there is irreverence in the fact that they infuse a plethora of techniques to meld together their unique vision. It's garnering some attention - we will see what the future holds.

Mirror Lady - Roman Candles
Mirror Lady - You Left Me

Dada Trash Collage is a Detroit slash Minneapolis slash Seattle band that have been together in some form since 2008. The resultant years has seen them rise phoenix-like from the shifting sands into what w witness here today. Having put out five full length albums, a few EPs and some other collaborations and multimedia assignments, the band is only now reaching its true potential, as can be seen on latest release Fun Fund. The EP weaves through psychedelia, dub, experimental electronic soundscapes, and hard driving west african grooves, and is as accessible as it is hard to pin down.

Dada Trash Collage - Migraine
Dada Trash Collage - Fliers

I only received the album Urgency today, so I haven't listened to it yet, but I have been totally digging the electronic/guitar drone wigout that is 'Money Games' by the band COP. Apparently the album is a driving, and highly experimental recording, teetering between instrumental electro rock and noisecore - which means that this track has those elements distilled into a six minute shot to the eyeball. It is the first release from this trio, comprised of Arrison Kirby (Never Sorry, Obadiah, El Deth Recordings which this actually comes out on, a bazillion other things), Wesley Wyrick (Star Mountain, Dolphyn Rydyr) and New York drummer SK (The Glaring Sound). This is the kind of experimentation that I actually enjoy rather than endure, so I can't wait to sit down with a Bloody Mary and take the whole thing in.

COP - Money Games

Dan London is a singer-songwriter-guitarist-bassist (currently with The Longwalls) living in the town of Jamaica Plain, MA. Written over the course of several years in between Nashville and Boston, London's debut Happy to See Me is a record about changes - lots and lots of changes. You get the Ray Davies/Elvis Costello/Bruce Springsteen influences throughout. It's a fun listen, to be sure, which you can grab for free here.

Dan London - Little Bit About Me

Foxes! is the name of the Brighton band and the debut LP that they have just put out on Big Salad Records. It's different - equal parts jangly throwaway pop, languid prog rock and verbose indie twee, all rolled out with such gay abandon that it's hard to not be offended by such exuberant confidence. Yet the band has completed an incredible balancing act on this album, one that grows with every listen.

Foxes! - The Panda Bear Song
Foxes! - Adam Badamchi


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