Friday, 30 October 2009

Music blogs have gone stale

...and this is no exception.

Thanks and bye!

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Let's. Make. Breakfast!

Auntie showed a more than decent documentary about synth music's beginnings in depressing 70s Britain last night. The Sheffield bands along with Throbbing Gristle in London existed primarily as a reaction to the staleness of punk, musically at least. It reminded me in many ways of what was happening in New York amongst a troupe of nihilists and deconstructionists (aka the No Wave scene) at about the same time. The main difference, paricularly with Phil Oakey, was No Wavers completely rejected any idea of success or careerism, back then at least. My current favourite No Wavers are impLOG, part of the scene by association rather than musical definition, who were primarily the work of Don Christensen from The Contortions.

impLOG's most lasting track from their three releases is 'Holland Tunnel Dive' and it is awesome, but
I prefer the charm served up with their ode to the most important meal of the day. No black pudding though.

impLOG - 'Breakfast'.mp3 [YSI]

impLOG - 'Holland Tunnel Dive'.mp3

Words: SS

Monday, 14 September 2009

"Where's the stash?"

Ever wondered quite why SALEM's music is so dark and dank? This picture of a coked-up, deranged and physically abusive Melissa Joan Hart, aka Sabrina The Teenage Witch, tells more than words ever could.

SALEM have a new limited release ('Frost'/'Legend') coming out Stateside via Audraglint. UK visit plans can't be too far off being announced either (hopefully).

SALEM - Frost

SALEM - Trap Door.mp3 [YSI]

Words: SS

Monday, 7 September 2009


'Old Rave'

E's are Good, E's are Good, He's Ebeneezer Goode! Rave is back, and we’re not talking the fashion indie-electro obsessed New Rave Class of ’06 & ’07. No, a classier rehash which is a lot more musically minded and much less about getting hysterical over Hadouken and looking like a glo-stick has puked on your face. Think of it more like an episode of Hitman & Her minus dodgy men from Bradford telling us how good of a dancer they are as Michaela Strachan chews her own face off. New Rave was bad music which took on a similar life journey as constipation. It passed through a couple of channels with little to offer, but still insisted on lodging itself in a dark little place. It took a lot of effort to get rid of and left behind a really bad smell. We don’t want a repeat of that.

In simpler words - it’s more about the music this time. With the sounds of the Summer of Love ‘88/‘89 as inspiration even drum & bass producers are flocking to a more synth-etic, euphoric, house driven kind of sound. DJ Zinc is now making what he describes as ‘Crack House’ - stand out tracks include Killer Sound (feat. NoLay) and Submarines which have underlying sounds that are so reminiscent of early 90’s house.

Producers that were probably buzzing off fidget house this time last year are reworking old stompers including the Prodigy’s Warrior Dance which takes a slice of Final Cut & True Faith’s Take Me Away not to mention Crom’s dirty bootleg of DJ Flavour’s Your Caress. Bowlers reunion anyone?

You can also feel the flavour of 80s-90s house with anything by ROB THREEZY. You can hear the elements and inspiration of tracks like HEX – ALRIGHT TO LOVE (EXPOSURE MIX) and XPANSIONS – MOVE YOUR BODY smuggled in there. Backed by colossal electro bass label Nightshifters and with the likes of AC SLATER and HOSTAGE as label-mates Rob Threezy is going far. He’s been big in ‘09 but he’ll be pissing all over the skills of many other electro producers by next year. Keep an eye and an ear out for him.

P Diddy finds out the meaning of 'booty call'

MC’s and rappers are clamouring for a housey collab, even the most flossiest of them all, P Diddy appears on DJ Hell’s The DJ. I blame it on Ecstasy. Strange things happen when rappers get their hands on it, and apparently Diddy has been indulging in it. He stupidly got caught buying it on cameraphone by some weird Spanish dude. Diddy’s not alone though. B.G., Bone Thugs & Harmony and Lil’ Jon have blatantly all been there. Hip-hop tracks are getting the re-mixture treatment from top-dog electro producers, most recently the Kid Cudi, Kanye West and Common jam Make Her Say, which has been given a housey lick by Nadastrom in his MP3 DOWNLOAD: 88 DUB. [Taken down by the good douchebags at the IFPI]

You can breathe a sigh of relief, as my 2009 rave lecture draws to a close here. Hope you enjoy the bounty of videos and sites I’ve left in those carefully constructed HTML links. It took me bloody ages.

Words by ESQUEEZY.

Slewwwww dem!

Saturday, 5 September 2009

So Much To Answer For: Cottonopolis Top 20 LPs

We were asked to name our top 20 albums by Manchester-based artists for a forthcoming feature for SoundProof magazine. We limited ourselves to two LPs per band and based our selections purely on what our favourite records were, i.e. we're not suggesting it's definitive. Sadly there was no room for Proud Mary. Obviously this has given us the perfect excuse to post a load of great music [in alphabetical order]...

1. Autechre – Tri Repetae (Warp) [1995]

2. Buzzcocks – Love Bites (United Artists) [1978]

3. A Certain Ratio - The Graveyard and the Ballroom (Factory) [1980]

Do the Du.mp3 [YSI]

4. Diagram Brothers - Some Marvels of Modern Science (New Hormones) [1981]

5. Electronic – Electronic (Factory) [1991]

6. The Fall – Live At The Witch Trials (Step Forward) [1979]

Industrial Estate.mp3 [YSI]

7. The Fall – Hex Education Hour (Kamera) [1982]

8. A Guy Called Gerald – Black Secret Technology (Juice Box) [1995]

9. Joy Division – Unknown Pleasures (Factory) [1979]

Disorder.mp3 [YSI]

10. Joy Division – Closer (Factory) [1980]

11. New Order – Power Corruption Lies (Factory) [1983]

12. Magazine – Real Life (Virgin) [1978]

13. Magazine – The Correct Use Of Soap (Virgin) [1980]

Because You're Frightened.mp3 [YSI]

14. Morrissey – Vauxhall and I (Parlophone) [1994]

15. The Smiths – The Smiths (Rough Trade) [1984]

16. The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead (Rough Trade) [1986]

The Queen is Dead.mp3 [YSI]

17. The Stone Roses – The Stone Roses (Silvertone) [1989]

18. Von Südenfed - Tromatic Reflexxions (Domino) [2007]

Fledermaus Can't Get It.mp3

19. World Of Twist – Quality Street (Circa) [1991]

20. 808 State – Newbuild (Creed) [1988]

Thoughts etc. welcome.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Oasis Split

Personally, I thought they were about as relevant as the Anglo Saxon Chronicle, but others have not taken the split so well...

Monday, 31 August 2009

DIY Bank Holiday

We're rapidly reaching the point of saturation with lo fi/DIY. Nathan Williams' personal implosion appeared indicative of a sound pushed beyond its own sustainability (Wavves' new output suggests this is something he's fully aware of). But no, we're not there quite YET. Mainly because the emerging bands (Teen Sheikhs) and releases (Manchester's Mazes via Sex Is Disgusting) are still ace enough to hold our attention.

But the best reason to revive your interest in this sound is Leeds'
Spectrals, who ride similar surf waves to Ducktails and Arch M, but atop their own 60s pop waxed board. They've coined it "faux beach psychedelia", which kinda fits. An LP is forthcoming on Captured Tracks and the band arrive in Manchester on 25 November to support Wavves at the Deaf Institute.

Get involved.

Spectrals - 'Leave me be'.mp3 [YSI]

Words: SS

Saturday, 22 August 2009

A date which will live in infamy

Yeah that's right, these guys hung out together. It's a stark image, one of the starkest.

It's something which Richard D. James can only aspire to create himself. The best he could do, when he played under Piccadilly Rail Station back in December 2007, was three professional gurners giving it their all up on stage with him, a good effort, but it dosen't imprint on your soul the way this picture does.

We'll soon see what RDJ can come up with next as Kevin & Perry Go Large returns to Manchester this September (unfortunately minus the uncontrollable erection gags every five minutes).
Yes, The Warehouse Project is back and in amongst the insipid once-a-year-pill-taker dance fodder (and Jack Penate) lineup, you'll see Aphex Twin's name shining like a two pound coin in a dog turd.

The 2007 show was truly special, so I'd advise you to add your voice to the sound of the crowd on 2 October. Got it? Good.

The Tuss - 'Rushup I Bank 12'.mp3 [YSI]
AFX - 'Laughable Butane Bob'.mp3

Aphex Twin - 'Inkey$'.mp3 [YSI]

Words: SS

Tuesday, 18 August 2009


Contracting ‘Swine Flu’ really sucks.

I mean for a start you have to let someone else pick up all your food/medication/washing and do pretty much everything for you round the house. Even your employers aren’t looking to rush you back to wellness and work, advising instead to ‘just come back when you feel ready’ and ‘give us a call later on in the week’.

Luckily it’s not just a licence for complete domestic negligence and enforced leisure; believe it or not there are actually a few perks to it as well. Aside from allowing you to stock up on Tamiflu tabs to sell on at attractive profit margins it also allows for significantly increased time online to discover new music while intermittently refreshing your facebook homepage.

That’s the story of how I came to discover Nite Jewel anyway.

Nite Jewel is the musical project of LA dweller Romana Gonzalez who records all her work on an eight track tape recorder (without that ever sounding as clichéd as it otherwise might in this post-Wavves world). I can’t tell if her music is really happy or really sad, but it certainly gives me the same kind of goosebumpy feeling I got when I heard Telepathe and Salem for the first time. It’s euphoric and wistful in equal measure, the sound of sequencers and drum machines mourning their own sense of industry from the dancefloor, the finely textured sonic minimalism of the music always secondary to the reverberant space in which it exists.

There’s no UK shows till October, but hopefully the mp3’s floating around the blogosphere [and if you're real keen her LP, Good Evening, out now on NPIP] should keep you sated till then.

Could someone book a Manchester show please? [We can't afford her] Ta.

Nite Jewel - 'Weak For Me'.mp3 [YSI]

Words: Billy idle

Friday, 17 July 2009

Grammar Rodeo

Seemingly out of nowhere, London's Dave I.D. has released an ace double single of dark electronic pop on new label, Off The Uncertain Button. Get your mits on it here.

Dave I.D. - 'ILikeTheSoundOfThemWithoutMe'

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Hollerin' the rinsin' sound: New Pictureplane!

Back in June 2008 we wrote about this amazing electro grime chap we’d just discovered in HEALTH’s top friends. Travis Egedy, aka Pictureplane, had self-released this ace album called Turquoise Trail, he’d remixed the likes of Crystal Castles and HEALTH and he ran a DIY art space/gig venue, which was also his home, called Rhinoceropolis in Denver, Colorado. Naturally he was our hero and we pulled him tight to our collective bosom, naming him our favourite artist of 2008.

Since then he’s toured the States in support of HEALTH, which he’s about to do again (in the U.S. and Europe), and signed to the same label, Lovepump United. His first LP release with Lovepump,
Dark Rift, is out on 4 August and showcases more of that killer amalgamation of 80s pop, 90s dance and 00s grime, shot through with complete gay abandon. I highly recommend you buy it. We caught up with a super excited Travis for a quick bit of Q&A:

Dark Rift
“I think people will enjoy it. The record has more of a 'dark' sound to it, I was listening to a lot of grime and funky while I made it.
Dark Rift is a conceptual album (is that a bad word?) about galactic alignment, and the position of our earth travelling through the centre most point of our galaxy in the next few years. Otherwise known as the galactic centre, or the DARK RIFT. I can talk for days about this stuff, but if you are interested just start googling, it’s fascinating stuff.”

Mainstream media attention
“I really try to not think to hard about that kinda thing (see Pitchfork's words). It can distract you from what is really important, which is the art. It is nice for sure, I would be lying if I said I didn’t use to daydream about shit like that. I still daydream about being in The FADER magazine. FADER, where you at??”

Touring with HEALTH
"We get along really well. I love those guys, they’re really down to earth regular bro dudes! I think the dynamic of our sound, while being totally different, really works well together in a live setting. They would call me the party starter. I was like a hype man or something before their sets, getting the kids ready to freak out. It meshed really well. I can’t wait to get out on the road with them again. Kombucha, splash.”

UK autumn visit plans
"I don't know the dates for sure yet. I have never been outside of the USA before. I am terribly excited; I know that I will fall in love with it out there. I have heard that vegetables are hard to come by out there, and that makes me nervous haha. I want to go clubbing while I am there, is that even what you call it there? Raving? DANCING! See you soon!”

Some blogs have been erroneously promoting some of Travis’ old songs, from the distortion friendly Slit Red Bird Throat LP, as new material. For shame. This is the real stuff right here...

Pictureplane – ‘Transparent now (thin veil)’.mp3 (YSI)

Pictureplane – ‘Goth star’.mp3 (YSI)

>>>Update: Pictureplane will be playing with HEALTH at the Deaf Institute on 7 October 2009.

Words: SS

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Gotta get Thru this

The good people over at BreakThru Radio, an internet radio station based in New York which focuses on independent and unsigned artists, were kind enough to nominate us as their 'Blogger Of The Week'. Yay! You can listen to an hour of New Ears music (unfortunately no local stuff) online by following these easy steps:

1. Visit
2. Click on 'Multimedia Archive'
3. Select 'DJ DoseU' and 'last 30 days' and click 'Search'
4. Click on '06/25/2009 - Anatomy of a Blogger'.

Lesser Panda - 'Carousel (Drums of Death RMX)'
Pariah - 'Detroit Falls'

Ganglians - 'Lost words'
Telepathe - 'Chrome's on it'

Vivian Girls - 'Where do you run to'
Samps - 'Magnetic thys'
Abe Vigoda - 'Don't lie'
Wavves - 'Weed demon'
Baby Venom - 'Frank'
Salem - 'Whenusleep'
Black Dice - 'Glazin'
Patten - 'Grey gold (test mix)'
Baby Venom - 'Moms and dads'

Pictureplane - 'New mind'
Samps - 'Mashed skins'
Patten - 'Version (test mix)'

Big thanks to Isaac Stonberg (aka DJ DoseU) for arranging this.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Best In Show

Mike Sniper (aka Blank Dogs) has been spending a lot of time in his bedroom this year. And I’m not about to tell a rude joke. Sniper - the misleadingly solo Brooklynite - it turns out is a musical machine of real pedigree, whose dedication to all things drum machine, analogue synth and reverb guitar has sent Blank Dogs and his side project, The Mayfair Set, leaping into New Ears’ sweaty lap.

As he freely admits to being "an avid conspiracy theory junkie" you'd be forgiven for thinking he was barking mad. But he can explain damn it, "they're pure entertainment, I don't believe any of it...I also love documentaries that freak me out”. Hence why his enchanting bicoastal collaboration with LA’s Dum Dum Girls is named after an Adam Curtis documentary series about a sinister group of capitalists in 1960's London. The Mayfair Set’s output thus far has combined Blank Dogs' dark baritone with DDG's bright, shimmering melodies to striking effect; a sound they've coined “sad prom music”.

His Blank Dogs material occupies similar ground to the L Train scene’s other leading lights, see Vivian Girls and Crystal Stilts (some of the members of which appear on the excellent recently released LP, Under and Under). Synth and guitar melodies like that of The Cure dominate, albeit filtered through a smorgasbord of grinding fuzz; it's too arresting to be inaccessible, but far too filthy to be labelled plain old pop.

I recommend you lap this up. Wow, managed to do all that without once mentioning Joy Divis...

Blank Dogs - 'No compass'.mp3 (YSI)

The Mayfair Set - 'Desert fun'.mp3 (YSI)

Words: Jake Richards

Friday, 3 July 2009

Glastonbury 2009

My favourite overheard conversation at this year's (almost too) sunny festival was, "I think I saw Annie Mac earlier, but it might have just been a girl with curly hair". I know, a real corker! If the BBC's suffocating, insipid and neverending coverage of this year's Glastonbury has not yet bored you to tears, prepare to leave base camp for that summit by the end of this post.

Sadly the festival will mostly be remembered for the death of Michael Jackson, not because there was some sort of outpouring of emotion in homage to him as the media would suggest (this article is particularly misleading), but just because it happened at all. On Thursday night people spoke of nothing else
, yet despite my frequent requests I couldn't find a single place that would play me 'Earth Song'. Apparently that's not what he'll be remembered for. Other rumours of celebrity deaths started to circulate too: Bubbles, Timmy Mallet, Jeff Goldblum and Steven Wells (sadly true). By Friday morning t-shirts emblazoned with "R.I.Paedo" were on sale and proudly worn by only the most tasteful of revellers.

Apart from the experience of trying to find some solace for a random guy in the midst of a k-black-hole by sneaking him into the Silent Disco, what will stay with me from Glastonbury 2009 are the performances of Animal Collective and Hudson Mohawke. Glasgow's Hud Mo blew everything else I saw in the Dance Village out of the water and exposed just how dated most 'dance' music sounds in comparison to his diverse instrumental electronic hip hop, even if he was given a lame afternoon set time.

There's little that can be said about Animal Collective that's not already been said, except that they're well good! Although someone may have written that before. Their, now predominantly electronic, set at The Park stage on Friday night was simply the best live show I've seen all year. The crowd were, by and large, reduced to mumbling lovesick idiots, kind of like when an aunt leans over a pram giving it the babytalk and making fart noises like they're a cute sound - but in a good way! If you haven't paid even the slightest attention to their latest LP, Merriweather Post Pavilion then you deserve tarring and feathering for being a sonic imbecile of the most deranged kind.

Most worrying this year was The Levellers lack of presence. Not even a poster in the urinals saying there's a gig in Guilford coming up. I'm concerned. Anyone have any news?

Words: SS

Tuesday, 23 June 2009


Well this sucks.

I just found out about the Adam Curtis - Punchdrunk Theatre Company collaboration, part of the Manchester International Festival, and it's completely sold out. The interactive theatre production features Curtis' new documentary, 'It Felt Like A Kiss', across five floors of a derelict building in Spinningfields.

In theory this is the sort of thing I would normally shy away from, but Adam Curtis' involvement has me more than intrigued. Curtis is a documentary filmmaker whose work questions the way we look at the world we live in - and not in some faux-religious conspiracy theory type way - but by examining the motivations and actions of powerful individuals and how their decisions have shaped our values and politics today. I first came across his work through his excellent series about an unscrupulous and sinister group of capitalists in 1960s London named 'The Mayfair Set' (streamable here).

'It Felt Like A Kiss' focuses on how the American ideals of the 1950s and 60s became instilled in our psyche and the unforeseen consequences this has had on the world and in our minds. Basically it's a film about how the American Dream has come back to haunt us, but cut to music from the golden age of pop.

Alas, unless you already have a ticket, you'll have to wait untill it appears in the cinema or on the BBC. You can find out more about the event here, but it's the trailer below which has really whet my appetite...

>>>Update: 27/07/09 - 'It Felt Like A Kiss' is now streamable for a limited period at Adam Curtis' BBC blog.

Words: SS

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Gang Time

Shalom shalom shalloo. It's Dan Szor here! It's been a while but I've been 'darn sarffff' in Londinium, sewing the seeds of a velvet revolution from the inside - and yes, I live on Kingsland Road, the main artery from Shoreditch to Dalston, so basically I'm living on the front line. It's so trendy you know, everyone's grown a moustache, is in a band and uses times new roman type face for their one-word or too many words band name. These are challenging times I hear them cry over their sub post pump, no wow(wow) distorted guitars, but cheer up kidda, you'll be fine. After all you can all return back to Mummy and Daddy's house in Richmond once you get tired of being cold in your squat just off Balls Pond Road.

Anyway, rant over, what I really wanted to talk about was my discovery of a band named Ganglians. Once again we turn our eyes over the Atlantic (let me know if you see any Air France debris [too soon?]) and the States towards the Pacific shores of Sacremento, California. Maybe it's got something to do with the eternal sundrenched landscape, but it just seems that America can do psychedelia so much better than us Brits at the moment. The slacker mentality over there seems to bare fruits far beyond the realms of human consciousness, unlike here where it boils down to a couple of cans of K Cider and a self elevated sense of superiority. Imagine Love, The Beach Boys and Animal Collective having a barbecue at Charles Manson's ranch and you get Ganglians.

Right, I'm off to Stonehenge for the Summer Solstice - I just found the perfect soundtrack in their song 'The Void' - Julian Cope ain't getting played this year as the bugger didn't reply to any of my emails. Check them out pronto!

Ganglians - 'The Void'.mp3 [YSI]

Ganglians - 'Candy Girl'.mp3

Ganglians have a new LP, Monster Head Room, out on Woodsist, seek it out here.

Words: Dan Szor

Thursday, 18 June 2009


Next month, Saturday 11 July to be precise, New Ears takes over the upstairs terrace area at Trof in Fallowfield to bring you an afternoon (12-8 in the pm) of sizzlin' summer jams and BBQ treats. Expect classic hip hop, 90's dance and beach party anthems all afternoon...kinda like this...

Naughty By Nature - 'O.P.P'

Livin' Joy - 'Dreamer'

Come come, there's a dear. Oh, and bring a can of Lilt.

FB event here.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Cloudy and then clearing

The good people over at No Pain In Pop are getting rather hot under the collar over London's emerging young beat collective, with Joy Orbison, Floatingpoints and Pariah getting muchos kudos. And with good reason. But New Ears has been drawn more to the palls of crunk clouds drifting over the Atlantic from North America, yeah I'm talking about the much blogged and much ace SALEM, but I also want to highlight the fresh bare atmospherics of Canada's Babe Rainbow, which currently has me bonered into next week.

Babe Rainbow is the project and product of Cameron Reed, a music marketing consultant who puts on huge shows and festivals in Vancouver and owns a hat collection to make even PJ green - and I don't mean with paintballs. A remix of SALEM appears to be on the cards shortly, but nearly every mp3 Cameron has ever sneezed in his Babe Rainbow moniker is available here. I strongly suggest you go fetch them.

Wavves - 'Weed Demon (Babe Rainbow's Surf-Step Edit)'.mp3 [YSI]

SALEM - 'Redlights'.mp3 [YSI]

Words: SS

Friday, 5 June 2009

Cycling shorts are mandatory

Manchester Velodrome, 2 July 2009, is a must.

Rumour has it that Manchester International Festival and Kraftwerk have something much more than your average gig planned. Word has reached New Ears that this includes the crowd watching the show with 3D specs and the GB Olympic cycling team riding around the Velodrome's track during 'Tour de France'. Crikes!

Kraftwerk - 'Tour de France (1983 version)'.mp3 [YSI]

Friday, 15 May 2009

"Stick your enemies in front of daytime TV"

is Mark E. Smith's advice this year via his annual missive to his fans, which in the wake of the public's disgust with our political nomenklatura could result, if we all accepted the advice, in the erection of an enormous outdoor screen in Westminister broadcasting Jeremy Kyle's bile 24 hours a day. I don't know for sure, but claiming expenses for their kit kats while "and now for those DNA test results!" reverberates like thunder across SW1 will probably be more difficult.

My own advice this weekend is to stick your friends in front of Zomby, playing live for the first time in Manchester this Saturday (16 May) at Club Underground as part of the anually (usually naff) Futuresonic Festival. Zomby's superb genre-shifting debut LP,
Where Were U in '92?, merged elements of dubstep, hardcore rave, piano house and, on standout track 'Tears in the rain', dialogue samples from Blade Runner.

Zomby, along with other ace producers like Rustie, Hudson Mohawke and Joker, has been lazily fenced into a genre called "wonky", the fans of which according to
former clued-up music journalist, Simon Reynolds', recent ill-conceived theory are all ketamine users. Clearly annoyed at the article, Zomby thankfully provided a short riposte (found here) to the Guardian's anachronism, who's evidently not been to a club since people stopped shouting "oo-ee, oo-ee!"

Support comes from a bunch of people I've never heard of and headlined by dubstep stalwart Kode9. More info for the night can be found hither.

Zomby - 'Tears in the rain'.mp3

Zomby - 'Float'.mp3 (YSI)

also check out Zomby's amazing 'Back to '92' Mix for Dazed & Confused magazine.

Words: SS

Saturday, 9 May 2009


I missed last month’s S.C.U.M gig at Retro Bar hosted by Fiction Non Fiction, but rumour has it that halfway through the set a young boy stood up on a chair at the back of the audience and shouted, “What a swizz! All this music is, is five kids aping Suicide and Throbbing Gristle’s atmospherics without the songs, where’s the entertainment value in that? It’s all quite pointless.” Those at the gig where visibly shocked by the incident. A few guys in eye makeup where later seen staring into a half-empty pint glass and mumbling, “what's the point of it all?” Whilst I can’t support the veracity of these events, I can, if it did happen, understand the child’s sentiment.

This blog was as attracted as anyone by last year’s emerging ‘Darkwave’ scene in London. Led primarily by S.C.U.M, An Experiment On A Bird In The Air Pump and KASMs, the scene’s early output was promising but we’re now rapidly reaching the point where these bands need to hit us with some tunes, something tangible, something memorable. Before these arrive Darkwave can continue to produce talented self publicists if sonically challenged bands or host as many self congratulatory gigs in Shoreditch Church as it wants, but no one outside that clique will care. Ironically, it’s O. Children, the one band that has actively distanced itself from the scene, that looks most like making significant strides in the future. This summer is Darkwave’s time to make good on its promise, or get off the pot.

With that in mind, what else is happening in London? My own cursory examination has highlighted the following two acts as current hot nuggets of newness: Arch M's refreshing guitar haze and the exciting Liquid Liquidness of patten. Expect more from us on these soon.

Arch M - 'Cat grave' [YSI]

patten - 'Version' (test mixx) [YSI]

Words: SS

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Weezy = Wowzers.

I have no idea who CFCF is [duh, Canadian dark-disco producer who featured on HEALTH//DISCO] and I'm largely ignorant to the work of Lil Wayne and Cassie. Nevertheless, I'm all over this shit atm - did someone say "Summer Anthem" already?

I'm joining the gym tomorrow, look out for me in Platt Fields park rocking this jam out and hollaring at your girl all summer long. I'll be the guy in the muscle vest.


Cassie - Official Girl [feat. Lil Wayne] (CFCF remix) (YSI)

Words: Billy iDle

Also check out CFCF's fitting video for his own track 'You Hear Colours'...

CFCF - You Hear Colours from tommy boy on Vimeo.

Thursday, 30 April 2009

Wednesday, 29 April 2009


Ahh, the much maligned potato. First people start cutting the humble potato out of their diet due to the carbs, then he’s omitted from the five-a-day veg campaign and now sweet potato is turning up everywhere and getting all the cool party invites. Well, wipe that juicy white tear from your eye señor spud, I have some good news for you! You’re name-dropped in the awesome track, ‘Mashed Skins’ by L.A. based group, Samps. Finally some cred.

Samps is made up of Cole MGN (guitarist in Ariel Pink’s rad Haunted Graffiti), Harley B (aka Doktorberis) and Jason Whitemare. The project was started merely to indulge their passion for sampling and stoopid fun. Jason described their process and sound as “really A.D.D. and unfocused, yet still highly rewarding...sometimes!” But such is the quality of these tracks, demand is growing for them to make this more than just a pet project. Go check out their epileptic beats!

Samps - 'Mashed skins'.mp3

Words: SS

(These words currently feature in the latest edition of Super Super magazine. Go buy it now!)

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Go Ear - HEALTH @ Deaf Institute, Wed 22 April

HEALTH. You remember those guys, right? Three kinetically charged LA natives in psychedelic oversize hoodies soundtracking the end of the world while the guy from Magic Numbers holds it down on the skins. Pretty sexy stuff by all accounts. On BFF terms with Crystal Castles and kin of the then burgeoning ‘Smell Scene’ (along with No Age, Abe Vigoda, Mika Miko yadda yadda etc etc) their self titled debut was standard name dropping fare for hipsters and early adopters in the 07/08 season. Sure, the album itself might have been kinda hard work in places but, as anyone lucky enough to catch them in the UK last year will attest, there are few bands capable of competing with their androgynous beat-savvy racket in the live arena.

Anyway. The good news is, dear reader, that HEALTH are back. Back on wax/mp3 via new track Die Slow (currently doing the blog rounds as we speak and purchasable here) and back in our beloved Cottonpolis, courtesy of their appearance at Now Wave (@ The Deaf Institute on Wednesday). Expect the same winning combination of industrial strength beats, robotic vocals and guitars-not-guitars as before, but with newer material incorporating a more rhythmically coherent vibe, somewhere between their sound of old and that heard on their //DISCO remix album.

John from the band told us, "after seeing the psychologies of so many different crowds we are focusing a lot of attention on writing songs and structuring sets to move crowd reaction in a certain way...Our songs are always written with the live setting in mind, but we are now writing songs designed to make the crowd possibly react in a specific way".

"P.S. We are NOT gonna become a dance band". Phew, had me going there for a minute John.

See you on Wednesday then I guess. One.

HEALTH - 'Die slow'.mp3 (YSI)

Words: Billy iDle