Single Review – The Drums – I Can’t Pretend

The Drums

The Drums return with a second single from their upcoming third album Encyclopaedia (Out September 24th) with ‘I Can’t Pretend’. It’s a pretty sizable shift from the manic and unrelenting ‘Magic Mountain’ with a much more relaxed and steady beat with a swooning and distant ballad that features wistful and sentimental vocals, “cute” lyrics and feathery synth intervals and motions. The low lying bass line gently rumbles below it to give the foundation for the high swoons and nostalgic wistfulness. The distorted guitar track acts the twitchy hook to add to the feelings the song is already purposefully conveying. It’s a track that’s simple, but effective. A soft nudge as opposed to the smack of ‘Magic Mountain’ and a sign of a varied and dynamic third album.

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Single Review – Girl Band – De Bom Bom

Girl Band
Girl Band are an all male noise quartet from Dublin and they are about to release their new single ‘De Bom Bom’ on September 1st with a cover Beat Happening’s ‘I Love You as it’s B-Side. The A-Side track is a raging and screeching piece of nihilistic punk rock with a light but aggressive beat, industrially grinding and churning guitars and a scratching bass line with vocal shouts and wails over the top of it. The continues throughout the song, only changing to step up the tempo and intensity of it all. You can only imagine what the hell happens at one of their live shoes or gigs but through the chaos, you do pick up their skill and partially covered features that go unsung, such as the neat distortion of the bass which could be their secret weapon if you like. Oh and they’re influenced by Daft Punk too….
 
 
 
 
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The Knife and what sort of legacy they will leave

THE KNIFE ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM
The Knife have announced that they are to split at the end of their Shaking The Habitual tour that concludes in Reykjavik, Iceland on September 7th. Upon the news, they were hailed as one of the most influential acts of the millennium by The Guardian and even though you won’t be familiar with them; that evaluation could not be more true. Sweden’s Karin and Olof Dreijer were initially pushing the boundaries of electro-pop with their 2003 album Deep Cuts and their most popular single ‘Heartbeats’. With it, they were grasping the heavy distorted synth sound and trap drop like beats nearly a decade before they were in widespread use like they are now. Today we’ve even reached the point where McCartney is doing just that. Throughout the 21st century so far, they have continued to develop and push this sound on beyond it’s very advanced boundaries; encompassing the very best of the unknown and the future of music progression. The fact that today’s groups have only just cottoned on to what they were doing eleven, twelve years ago while they were taking their first steps is testament to their advanced ability. Most recently they have reached the heights of experimentation; to the point where a label or genre cannot be applied. Shaking The Habitual and it’s fear inducing, synth laden, cave dive was their sound of 2013, however, we will not see music of that tenacity and inventiveness until 2024 at the very earliest, such is their progressiveness. Their legacy is not what they’ve done but what other people do with what they’ve done. The legacy does not hark back to the past, but to the future. We just haven’t reached it yet. They shouldn’t be stood alongside The Beatles, Bowie, Sex Pistols and the like; they will take their place of the modest sort of innovators. The one’s that aren’t appreciated until long after they’ve gone. Like The Sonics, Silver Apples, John Foxx and Broadcast; their music will be uncovered like a archaeologist discovers and rare artefact.
 
Hopefully their separate projects will be just as advanced and as enthralling for god knows we can’t afford to lose some of the last great innovators of music we have left.
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This Week’s Music Video with Coldplay, Haim feat A$AP Ferg, The War On Drugs and M83

Originally posted on Don't Look Down...:

Coldplay – True Love

 

Haim feat. A$AP Ferg – My Song 5

 

The War On Drugs – Under The Pressure

 

M83 – Lower Your Eyelids To Die With The Sun

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This Week’s Music Video with Coldplay, Haim feat A$AP Ferg, The War On Drugs and M83

Coldplay – True Love

 

Haim feat. A$AP Ferg – My Song 5

 

The War On Drugs – Under The Pressure

 

M83 – Lower Your Eyelids To Die With The Sun

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Sunday Suggestion – Melody’s Echo Chamber – I Follow You

Melody’s Echo Chamber is the dream-pop and neo-psychedelic project of Melody Prochet of Paris. She released her debut self titled album back in 2012. The album featured Pablo Padovani of Moodoid on guitar and the familiar figure of Kevin Parker of Tame Impala behind the mixing desk as producer. These two figures were open minded and creatively inquisitive choices from Melody in combining the sprung and light cascading sound of Padovani’s guitar with Parker and his ability to create washed out waves of sound with acres of space and scope to grow and expand. This resulted in a delicate piece of psychedelia with the intricacy of Padovani’s riffs partnered with Melody’s higher pitched, yet calm whisper to guide the song slowly through the washes of lapping sound and space from Parker’s production. A song best encapsulating these concepts is ‘I Follow You’. It’s one of the more well known tracks off her debut and has the light hook and steady beat of the cascading riffs and simple snare beat. From this, the more distorted and drawn out guitars and synths allow the track to progress and fluctuate in different directions, but guided by the soft, reassuring vocal from Melody. A heavily distorted and grinding riff leads the song out while still interlocked with the song’s steady foundations. A method with produces a paradox of at times concentrating on the song’s light rhythm and whispered lyrics or just completely losing all thought in the expansive sounds it creates. A perfect track for those late summer nights.
 
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Ilias – All The Way Up Review

 

Ilias is a Algerian-Australian musician from Sydney and he has described his new studio album All The Way Up as  a “personal film soundtrack” and talks of the unique and eclectic sound of his album which he has been working on for up to ten months, along with a musical thread running through a varied collection of songs.
 
The album opens with soft acoustic lapping and rocking of ‘Someone Like You’. It’s made more expansive and spacious with the meandering feedback and soft edged lead guitar elements which echo out into the space created. A space made all the more fulfilling through his hushed and open vocals. ‘My Girl With Blue Eyes’ is more evocative of a jangling guitar, pop song with swooning lyrics delivered with a Neil Finn sort of quality that doesn’t make it cheesy or too sweet as the song’s quality is also accessible with it. ‘Fire Away’ has a completely alternative feel and dynamic to it with bold churning synth surges and rapid, offset percussion that calmly, yet with a hint of urgency; set the foundation for his wistful vocals which offer up a wonderful contradiction of sound. The chorus see’s the electronica clash and the pulsate and surge past each other. This then ushers in greater vocal echo and distortion to the point where you are immersed by the song as you become unsure whether you should be calm or uneasy about it. Such suspicions are answered with the shedding riff that tears down all before it at the song’s conclusion. A wonderful piece of recording and production.
 
‘Turn the clock back combine to the simple percussion of an early pop song with delicate melodies and simple lyrics which are strung together by the chiming, yet distorted synths and modulations. ‘Jet Glow’ is akin to Beck’s most recent work with the trembling, huge sounds from the guitars and the echoed whirrs and jolts that reverberate between your ears and almost take you off somewhere else. A simple, but wondrous instrumental track that leaves all of your senses heightened and on the edge of every dark melody and vibration. ‘Finding You’ has that simple ballad-like acoustic and percussion combination which is pushed and moved off it’s straight track progression by the Beatle-like shifts, scathes and track manipulations which are forced into the songs rhythm to reimagine and reconfigure an otherwise basic track. It is album that has that wonderfully distant and daydreaming tinge running through each track but at times it can be swooning comfortably or dropping you a cliff edge of heavy and quaking melody. An album with some of the best production I’ve hear all year, which enthuses and shakes the simple base structures of the tracks.
 
Ilias – All The Way Up = 8.5/10
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