Album Review…Lucky Shiner from Gold Panda
Ghostly International / Notown 2010
Listen to “Same Dream China” MP3
At his origins a remixer (Bloc Party, Health, Telepathe, Simian Mobile Disco), UK’s Gold Panda has now released his excellent debut full length Lucky Shiner. Out earlier this month as a digital release (featuring a few bonus tracks), the physical copy will be released in October on Ghostly International (North America & Europe), as well as on Gold Panda’s own label Notown.
On Lucky Shiner, Golda Panda deftly mixes the influences of place (the English countryside, memories of studies in Japan) with an array of personal experiences (falling in and out of love, touring, mixing). All of this combining to create a stellar album which captivates with subtlety and depth.
Check out the video for “Snow & Taxis” directed by Ronni Shendar.
02. Vanilla Minus
04. Same Dream China
05. Snow & Taxis
06. Before We Talked
08. I’m With You But I’m Lonely
09. After We Talked
10. India Lately
12. Greek Style (Digital Bonus)
13. Casio Daisy (Digital Bonus)
14. Rush Job (The Ghostly Store Exclusive)
MySpace | Lucky Shiner | Ghostly International
Track of the Day…”Windstorm” from School of Seven Bells
School of Seven Bells
Ghostly International / Vagrant / Full Time Hobby 2010
Listen to "Windstorm" MP3
School of Seven Bells was born back in 2004 when Benjamin Curtis from Secret Machines crossed paths with twin sisters Alejandra and Claudia Deheza of on!air!library!. Steadily devoting more time to the new group, these Brooklynites rallied behind the band's name, a reference to a mythical 80’s South American pickpocket academy, where seven separate minds combined to work as one.
As a follow-up to 2008's Alpinisms, the trio is back with an excellent new release Disconnect from Desire, out now on Ghostly International, Vagrant and Full Time Hobby. The album opener is “Windstorm”, a haze of Lush guitars and beats and swirling vocals from the sisters Deheza. You can check out the traffic stopping video here , directed by David Altobelli (director and editor for the latest video of the quietly stunning group Hammock.
Catch School of Seven Bells on 23 October at Santos Party House (as part of CMJ) and later in Paris on 3 November 2010 at La Boule Noire as part of the Petit Bateau / Kitsuné Inrocks event.
Official | MySpace | Ghostly International | Vagrant | Full Time Hobby
Track of the Day…”Flóð” from For A Minor Reflection
For A Minor Reflection
Listen to "Flóð" MP3
Young Reykjavik rockers For A Minor Reflection are an energetic, post-rock band that have been gaining attention since their 2008 tour with country honeybees Sigur Rós. While their sound is dynamic and strong, it is not as esoteric and detached as SR; we could see how they would pair well with them on tour. What we have heard of the group leaves us wanting more.
The rocker side of Icelandic music is apparent on “Flóð.” The track starts with a simple piano line and builds to an almost hallucinogenic finish.
Official | Mspace | Twitter
Track of the Day..."Cosmic Bacon" from The Samps
Listen to "Cosmic Bacon" MP3
The Samps is a sample-loving collective, made up of Cole M. Greif-Neill (guitarist from Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti), Harley B. and Jason Whitemare. The group plays with jumbles of sound, cleverly slicing and dicing and creating hook-laden grooves.
Look for the release of “Cosmic Bacon” as a 12” later this year on the Japanese label Big Love. The Samps debut 6-track EP is now available on Mexican Summer .
MySpace | Mexican Summer | Big Love
Track of the Day..."I'm Aware" from Clinic
Listen to "I’m Aware" MP3
Clinic is a Liverpool based band led by founding members Ade Blackburn and Jonathan Hartley. Their sound is best described as indie rock but they are universally known for their use of vintage instruments. They have gained acclaim over the past decade since signing with Domino Records in 1999.
On their new album Bubblegum the band has changed up their normal roiling hooks with a softer, more melodic pop sound.
The lead single “I’m Aware” is a pretty track built on a cowboy loping beat and bass underlying a sweet harmonic choir. It’s childlike sing-song tune float along in a mesmerizing, oscillating drone.
Check out their sweet, youngster puppet manual of a video for the song here.
MySpace | Official
Album Review …Spirit Guides from Evening Hymns
Kütu Folk Records (France) 2010 / Out of this Spark 2009
Listen to “Lanterns” MP3
Evening Hymns evolves around Toronto-based songwriter Jonas Bonnetta. His debut full-length under the moniker Evening Hymns Spirit Guides was released in North America late last year on Out of this Spark, and is seeing its release in Europe this month on France’s Kütu Folk Records.
“Lanterns” is a standout track which builds, slowly adding layers and sounds (guitars, drums, strings, horns), providing buoyancy to lyrics which gently reassures that “everything is going to be alright tonight”. “Mtn. Song” captures a sense of a certain wonderment, a rolling and impulsive track. While “History Books”, “Dead Deer” and “Cedars” follow a starker course, bare and seemingly exposed. “Broken Rifle” stands apart with its assured rock swagger., and on “November 1st, 2008, Lakefield”, quite simply put, it rained.
Be sure to catch Evening Hymns in Paris on 14 September at Point Ephémère. Jonas will also be in London on 27 (The Hoxton Bar and Kitchen), 28 (The Windmill) and 30 (King’s Cross Social) September. For a complete list of tour dates (France, UK, Belgium, Germany) check out the Evening Hymns MySpace page.
While not on Spirit Guides, check out the video for the excellent track “Port Hope” for a bit of the wonderfully understated spirit that is Evening Hymns.
Official | MySpace | Kütu Folk Records| Out of This Spark
Track of the Day..."Down The Drain" from Alexis Foxe
“Down The Drain”
Listen to "Down The Drain" MP3
New Yorker Alexis Foxe spins a sultry yet thought provoking blend of electronica and 1940’s big band nostalgia. Her vocals are sultry and crisp. The music derives from her global journey and yields tremendous results.
“Down the Drain” is a perfect song for the “debt” generation. This is a brassy, energetic uptempo number that has the feel of an electronic boogie woogie. The lyrics are sassy and insightful, highlighted by the phrase “My mother tells me that my spending habits, are as wild as copulating rabbits.”
The video for her song “Cynic”
Check out the charm and sass of Alexis Foxe live on September 23 at Piano’s in NYC.
MySpace | Official | Twitter
Track of the Day..."Heart Stab" from Champagne Riot
Listen to "Heart Stab" MP3
What began as a solo project of Caspar Bock in 2008, Champagne Riot has since transformed into a duo with the joining of fellow Dane (and music journalist / producer) Anders Reuter. The band’s stated inspiration of Hedonism, Dadaism, Nihilism and Abba sums up their sound pretty neatly – infectiously melodramatic tracks which delve head first into the blissful froth of pop.
Head over the Champagne Riot’s MySpace page and have a listen to the excellent tracks “Ingrid Bergman” (which has been on our hi-fi for awhile now) and “The Champagne Anthem”.
Champagne Riot’s next release is slated as a double A-side single “Heart Stab / A Friend of a Friend” for release on 27 September.
Official | MySpace