Simon & the Bande à Part: Blinking and Breathing


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Sentimental, introspective and foot tapping at the same time, Cape Town based Simon & the Bande à Part’s fourth album Blinking and Breathing is a beautifully written, wonderfully executed piece of work juxtaposed with relateable metaphors and dollops of sentimental humor. This trio comprises Simon on vocals and acoustic guitar, and ‘the outsiders’: Eric Michot (aka Mr Kito) on bass and Ross Campbell (Urban Creep, Benguela, Fetish) on drums. Produced by Ian Pritchett ( who also produced some albums by Angus & Julia Stone), this album seems to rightfully be headed towards continuing and adding on the successs and adulation that this very talented group has achieved thus far with their last three albums. A few samples from the album:



If you like what you hear, check out their website and choose your method of continued association 🙂

Prevrat: Symbols


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With his unique distorted Punky Pop-adelia, Ric Gordon aka ‘Prevrat’ might’ve created one of the most compelling records of the year. Symbols is a beauty of an album. Each track is a masterpiece and the album together is a work of art which might give the combined works of all the so called old-world maestros a run for their money. It combines punk, synthpop, ambient, electronic sounds and the deep resonating tones and sweeping synths perfectly complement his mildly husky voice as well as the superbly crafted lyrics. All the tracks are great and I shall post them all below as I am unable to pick favourites here. This is an album available for free or you can name your price. Please name your price, so that this wonderful artiste is encouraged to bring us more such works of genius for a long long time.







Maxwell Demon: Aurora


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A smoother Cobain? A gruff Bono? In his new Album Aurora, New York based Maxwell Demon efficiently traverses multiple vocal and musical landscapes in a lazy, laidback style which really he has so wonderfully made his own. The album opens with a mellow yet slightly upbeat Cross and then moves on to the really mellow track with a very addictive rhythm called Laidback followed by a slightly peppy Ballroom which then gives way to a delightful Interlude. After this the album adopts a borderline psychedelic groove with Deep Mass and Castles before it moves on to the wonderfully melodious, poetic and my favourite track on this album called Mirrorhouse. It finishes with Marilyn, which is very hazy, very doped out and slightly angry. Marilyn leads well into the first track Cross, thus giving a sort of cyclic mood to proceedings, somewhat reminiscent of the ways of Greek theatre. Whether the titular reference is astronomical, mythological or one of popular fiction, is a question only Herr Maxwell can answer, but for me this little gem of an album is that bright light for Maxwell which should hopefully propel him to the greater things that he seems to be so capable of. Without further ado, here are my top picks from the album:





If you like what you hear, the whole album can be streamed at soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/#maxwelldemon/sets/aurora.
Please support his work, share it and spread the word!

TinyTiny : Coyote


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Although fake Fried Chicken may be the most famous export from their surroundings, Kentucky based indie group TinyTiny are looking up to a real Coyote to transport their melodically lazy selves through the haze and maze of wherever.. Colonel’s secret recipe be damned, I am going with good old mushrooms for this one

Ghost Hotel


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Some sexy melodramatic bedroom pop originating from Maryland, US! Ghost Hotel are Sam Paxton – Vocals, Electric Guitar, Mandolin, Trumpet, Synthesizer; Alison Crawford – Vocals, Piano, Synthesizer ; Dane Di Pierro – Electric Guitar; Matt Jachowski – Bass Guitar and Patrick Long – Drums, Percussion. That array of intrmuent must’ve already given you an idea of what to expect and rightly so, their debut album ‘Do You Feel It’ , with its synth pop influenced sounds and lazily brilliant harmonies reflects the sound of a band who just love making music together. The whole album, which is a sheer delight for the ears can be streamed at their bandcamp page: http://ghosthotel.bandcamp.com/. We would like to leave you with a couple of tracks that showcase Ghost Hotel’s awesomeness right here:

Stonefeather


LA based hard funk band Stonefeather absolutely ace this song ‘hipster Girl’, which they released about a month ago. This is from their latest album ‘California Air’ and is arguably the most fun song we have featured in a while. With a great video, super catchy tune, exciting vocals, excellent sax work and a great overall mood to boot, this is just what the doctor ordered to dance those blues away. The band comprises Ian McCulluch, Zachary Kibbee and Dave Rundell. They seem nice :), so spread the word and buy their stuff.

Monks of Mellonwah


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The Monks of Mellonwah are a 4 member alternative rock band from Sydney, Australia. They have won a major award and created 3 albums in their slightly over three years old career thus far. They started out with a more funky sound reminiscent of John Butler Trio in their debut EP ‘Stars are out’ , and their second EP Neurogenesis started to blend incorporate influences from Modern Rock and a bit of psychedelia. Their third EP, which is to be released this April Fool’s day, shows the band drawing heavily from Floydian influences. The EP is titled Sky and the Dark Night , and is an applaudable attempt by the band to challenge themselves and pursue the treacherous path to greater glory. Have they found their feet with this genre yet? Not quite! But what they do display here is oodles of promise and boldness. I wish them all the very best and urge everyone to spread the word. Sometimes imperfections make for the best experiences:


The Newds : Ready


The Newds, an alternative indie band from Bolton, England have released their new EP titled ‘Ready’ about a fortnight ago. The band comprises Paul Meagher (Vocal / Guitar), Dean Woods (Guitar), Daniel Garthwright (Drums), Tony Sabanskis (keyboard) and John Fallon (Bass).

The EP starts off with the bittersweetly humorous ‘Go Getter’ (video above). If you want to know the true state of a man’s being, look at his shoes and not his clothes.Not that we have Gucci clad supermodels on display here but the tattered Pumas give part of that story away. The self mocking determination is highlighted by the way that the drums are literally hammered and by the free wheeling spirit which lets itself rip through suburban streets pushed along on shopping carts substituting for prams for the not-quite-toddlers-anymore. The satirical lyrics and the fuzzy guitars thoroughly highlight and totally complement the pointlessness of the average existence which we mock ourselves into believing as worthwhile courtesy the media-force-fed images of sunshine and sand and oceans and feet and what-not.

Th next track is Evermore, which I found to be the strongest track on the EP. Great introduction, outstanding rendition of the vocals, soulful lyrics and a profoundly simple drumbeat which astutely captures the not-sure-why-but-it’s-there-kinda-melancholy that some of us may experience from time to time. Take a bow! However, somehow I haven’t been able to find a link to the song anywhere on soundcloud or bandcamp, so I cannot feature it on this post. I have only managed to listen to it via an amazon mp3 download. It is worth the price, nevertheless.

Then the album moves on to ‘Mr. Happy Sunshine’ which reminds me of the track ‘Corporal Clegg’ from the Syd Barret era of Pink Floyd. Some pomp and splendour and a joy to listen to. The EP rounds off with ‘Chasing Shadows’, which almost has a Genesis like feel to it with thankfully not as much of the nasal tone as Phil Collins injected into the vocals. This is a solid track to conclude the EP on a reflective note with sounds that sound more like the music from the last 10 years. Anyhow here are the soundcloud links I could find:


If you like what you hear, I guess you can follow the band via the soundcloud links posted above. Cheers and spread the word!

Park Planet: Alive


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Glasgow based althernative rock band ‘Park Planet’, whom we introduced in November, have come out with a new single called Alive. The word Alive forms the title of many legendary songs and this new single from Glasgow has enough potential to place it close to its Pearl Jam namesake. A very single malty smooth classic, with great vocals and some fantastic guitar work going for it; this track makes you want to croon along and lose yourselves in its outstanding melody: