Wednesday 31 January 2018

WATCH: The Vaccines - 'I Can't Quit'

Since smashing their way onto the indie music scene with the impeccable debut album What Did You Expect From The Vaccines? back in 2011, The Vaccines have secured themselves a spot as one of my favourite bands with 2012 follow-up Come Of Age and 2015 record English Graffiti. The hit makers are back this year cracking new single I Can't Quit, taken from the new record Combat Sports, due for release on 30th March.

The tune packs a punch and, true to form, is incredibly catchy - it's fairly reminiscent of their earlier material. The band headed to Italy to shoot a video for the track, which premiered recently and shows them on a pretty messy night out (there's also a couple of cute dogs so it's certainly worth a watch!) Speaking to NME, the band said that "the song is really simple, confident and fun and we wanted our role in the video to reflect that. but we also wanted the video to represent these vicious cycles that we often get ourselves into but have no control over - they can feel confusing, isolating and violent." The video is the first to feature touring band members Timothy Lanham (keys) and Yoann Intonti (drums) as official members of the band, following founding member Pete Robertson's departure in 2016, and they seem to be settling in perfectly!

The Vaccines head out on a UK tour in April to promote the release of the new record, culminating in a huge show at London's Alexandra Palace. Full tour dates and ticket info from their website here!

Follow The Vaccines online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 24 January 2018

LISTEN: Cosmo Sheldrake - 'Egg and Soldiers'

Cosmo Sheldrake remains one of the most intriguing, unusual and exciting artists I had the pleasure of discovering and seeing live in 2017. Challenged only by Banfi and Seramic opening up for Bear's Den earlier in the year, Cosmo performed one of my favourite support slots of the year at The Roundhouse on the Johnny Flynn & The Sussex Wit tour. His ability to stand alone on the stage and fill such a large space with his quirky tunes and completely endearing personality really impressed me, particularly the way that he preluded each track by introducing the audience to the samples that he was about to use - his passion for the music and for seeking out interesting sounds was incredibly apparent (which you can see for yourself in this live reworking of a track from 2013.) From that show and a lot of listening to his back catalogue since, favourite tunes for me include Solar, a track combining a sample of the sun's rays (!) with lyrics taken from a William Blake poem, and the entirety of the Pelicans We EP which I hastily bought from the merch stand after the show.

I was pretty delighted to hear recently that Cosmo had confirmed details of his debut album The Much Much How How and I, which is set for release through the wonderful Transgressive Records on 6th April! The album has been shaped by artists ranging from The Beatles and The Kinks to Moondog and Stravinsky, Sheldrake's anthropological study at University and his longstanding interest in ethnomusicology. The record was produced by Cosmo and Matthew Herbert, and was recorded at Soup Studios as well as in Cosmo's basement - check out the various pre-order options (including limited edition vinyl) here.

Following recent singles Come Along and Mind of Rocks, Cosmo has recently released the latest single from the upcoming record, Egg and Soldiers. It is a song "about hubris and the potential pitfalls of short-sightedness" which you can check out below - be sure to listen out for sounds including "an escalator in St Pancras station, Cosmo's late cat Cocoa purring, a stream in Snowdonia, a brass band, lots of woodwind and a string quartet." 

If you like what you're hearing and would like to see Cosmo's impressive live performance for yourself then be sure to check out his upcoming UK and Europe tour, including a date at London's Village Underground on 5th April - all the dates and ticket information are here and come with a very big recommendation from myself!

Follow Cosmo Sheldrake online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Monday 22 January 2018

LISTEN: PBSR - 'Volcano'

Allow me to introduce you to PBSR, a new project from 24 year-old Murcia-born and London-based multi-instrumentalist and composer Pablo Serrano. As the latest signee to Yucatan Records, his debut EP as PBSR, entitled ...and dusky doors, is due for release on the label later in the year, with the work presenting "caverns, canyons, mountains and galactic skies of sound; signatured by his deft use of electronic beats, piano melodies and that subtly soulful voice." The first track to be taken from the six track EP, Volcano is a meandering, atmospheric tune, through which Pablo gives listeners an almost cinematic display of emotion.

His parents had an early influence on Serrano, with his mother a guitarist and his father introducing him to the likes of Pink Floyd and Brian Eno. His upbringing forged a natural musical curiosity in him as a youngster, leading him to start his first band when he was 15 or 16 years old, allowing him an excuse to experiment with recording and production. He explains that it was a "super exciting period where I tested out a thousand ways of discovering and shaping new ways of writing music, challenging the possibilities of my voice, creating textures [....] I uploaded some songs to Myspace and called it "Pabser". That was the beginning of PBSR." Citing his discovery of Sigur Ros as a major influence in his teen years, he explains that the Icelandic band illuminated a world of ambience and dramatic musical textures to him, playing a role in his own work. Following a university education in both Madrid and London, PBSR can now be found writing and mixing at his home studio in London. Check out the debut tune below!

Follow PBSR online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Friday 19 January 2018

WATCH: Low Island - 'Too Young'

Releasing their first single (the rather sublime Anywhere) back in November 2016, Oxford four-piece Low Island have very quickly become one of the most exciting bands on the scene. With two brilliant EPs, a string of sold out live shows and various festival slots under their belts the band are looking set to take 2018 by storm.

Brand new cut Too Young follows up the recent trio of singles The Lines, Tomorrow and I Know You, which will join to make up their third (heavily anticipated) EP. Take a watch of a new live video for the track below, directed by Ben Ogunbiyi and shot across their recent run of Low Island and Friends tour dates. The track is intricate and at times understated, focusing around the beautifully unique vocals of Carlos and building to a louder, punchier end point.

The band are set to release their new EP at their biggest London headline show to date on April 26th, when they'll be taking to Scala for Parallel Lines (tickets here.) Before that, they're playing what is sure to be a superb hometown gig at The Cellar in Oxford on 27th Jan with support from another favourite new act of mine, locals BE GOOD, as well as Magique and Juniper Nights - tickets are running low, grab the last few for that one here and enjoy the tune below!

Follow Low Island online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Monday 15 January 2018

WATCH: CHILDCARE - 'Getting Over You (By Dressing Up Like You)'

I'm a couple of months late with this one but it's too good not to share - feast your eyes and ears on the debut video offering from CHILDCARE. Getting Over You (By Dressing Up Like You) is the band's "most likely-to-be-featured-on-a-Spotify-playlist song to date [...] depicting an unorthodox approach to moving on from a relationship break up" - all making for a pretty fun tune and video. With a string of festivals, an arena support tour with Bastille, and their first headline tour under their belts already the band are surely more than qualified for a support tour with To Kill A King which kicked off a couple of nights ago in Sheffield, with dates until the end of the month (info here.)

Follow CHILDCARE online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 11 January 2018

WATCH: Roo Panes - 'A Message To Myself'

As I attempt to tackle my inbox full of submissions from the past couple of months I've been reminded of this beautiful new tune from Roo Panes. True to the form of his records Paperweights (2016) and Little Giant (2014) it's incredibly peaceful and soothing and a bit of an instant favourite. Talking about the tune, Roo explains that "being called 'A Message To Myself' I wanted it to have a minimalist, intimate, meditative kind of feeling, but I also wanted to express the sheer power and drama of one's thoughts and have an expansive feeling." He has recently announced that he's working on a new album, and shared news of a huge London headline show at O2 Shepherds Bush Empire on 23rd May (tickets are on sale here) so be sure to grab yourself a ticket if you like what you're hearing!

Follow Roo Panes online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Spotify.

Wednesday 10 January 2018

WATCH: Matthew & The Atlas - 'Palace' for 7 Layers

Happy new year folks! I've been a little quiet on here for the last few weeks as I've been working full time over Christmas and finding time to write posts has been tricky, but I'm hoping to get back to posting more regularly now! What better way to kick the year off than with a beautiful session from absolute folk legend Matthew And The Atlas, with the title track of the recent EP, Palace for 7 Layers. What a voice! I got a little distracted from writing the post and took a tour through most of his singles catalogue on Spotify... it's pretty faultless and I'd recommend that you do the same, but the recent EP is a great place to start if you're new to his music!

Follow Matthew And The Atlas online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Spotify.