There’s a pulsating electronic vibe that brings the latest Saint Etienne jam to your ears. The songs title owes a debt to both the Loft and Creation Records, but in the realm of pop, it’s the songs emotional pull that ultimately wins. Sarah Cracknell has sort of a smoky tone in her performance, though she seeps into the dreamy tones during the end of various lines, as well as during the chorus. I love how the group is taking on commonplace issues, such as the narrator missing out on the growing up of one’s children; it goes in line with what appears to be the overt message from Home Counties…there’s art and beauty in everything that surrounds us, no matter what that is. Look for the new LP on June 2nd via Heavenly Recordings.
I hope you’re not tired of hearing me go on and on about H. Hawkline, as I’m going to continue with his latest single. In the opening seconds of this tune, there’s definitely a nice little Television guitar vibe, yet, Hawkline’s playful vocal display keeps you coming back. He’s got great control on this one, whether he’s channeling a hip crooner or hitting those high notes. It’s always nice when you hear an artists coming across with their own distinctive sound, and that’s the vibe I’ve been getting from these singles. I Romanticize will hit on June 2nd via Heavenly Recordings.
Ranting and raving about an artist ins’t particularly my style, but every time I hear H. Hawkline write a new tune, I sort of swoon. His vocal delivery, particularly here, is rather distinctive, and it’s wholly central to my musical attraction. On this song, space is filled by bouncing piano beats and guitar chords that carefully echo through your speakers. Remember when we all fawned over Cate Le Bon and Tim Presley? Well, I’m going out of my way to say that as special as that duo remains, Hawkline’s doing it better. Look for the release of I Romanticize on June 2nd via Heavenly Recordings.
It’s been almost five years since we heard from Saint Etienne, but it’s clearly worth the wait, as they’ve announced Home Counties today. Sarah enters the scene with a breathy vocal, almost delivered as spoken word before the 40 second mark where synthesized beats add emphasis to her pronunciation. I love the ghostly ambiance hiding behind the whole mix, as the song’s character Heather seems to take on her own role of a ghost fluttering about in SouthernEngland (as nodded to in the art work). It’s always great when the best come out with new tunes, so count me as an excited fanboy; the release will hit on June 2nd via Heavenly Recordings.
H. Hawkline came into my music listening with his drastically overlooked In the Pink of Condition, but he’s just about wrapped up a new LP recorded out in LA. Here you find him centered around simple percussion and piano, allowing his voice to tantalize the listener; there are a few moments where it almost has a perfect bounce to match the musical accompaniment. Eventually, the song takes on a nostalgic pop note, moving into a moment of playfulness that’s utterly brilliant; it closes with pure ecstasy, so be sure to stay tuned until the end. For now, Heavenly Recordings is just tossing out this teaser track, but be on the look out for the full length later this year.
I really dig Hooton Tennis Club. They have this sound that reeks (in a good way) of classic pop sensibility, and when I listen to this new single, it’s so casual in its delivery that I’m hoping it doesn’t go overlooked. My ears hear remnants of late Brit-pop in the steady croon, with just enough hop swagger to remind the cool kids that this is what they should be listening to at the moment. Big Box of Chocolates, the group’s new record, hits today via Heavenly Recordings, so lend them your ears.
The Parrots will probably get a lot of hype merely by their association with Hinds, but every time I hear this song, I get transported to their SXSW sets. They were some of the most energetic/enjoyable sets I caught that week, and this song was by far one of the most memorable. It even features a nod to Austin itself with the sporting of a Hotel Hot Burrito tee, so yet another reason for me to get behind this track. Their debut album Los Ninos Sin Miedo will hit on August 26th via Heavenly Recordings, promising to be a catchy bit of crunchy garage pop for us all.
So, SXSW is a few weeks old, but the two memories that stand out the most in my mind are following around The Spook School for a few days like a fanboy, and this band, The Parrots. Honestly, I had only briefly heard about them via an out-of-date video they did with their friends in Spain, Hinds. But, their live performance was outstanding, and possibly one of the best I’ve seen in some time…especially considering they’re only a three piece. This new song captures some of that live tenacity, while illustrating just how much fun the band seem to have playing together; it’s not something you often catch in a recording. You’ll hear this track from the band’s debut album, which is slated for release via Heavenly Recordings later this year.
One of the bands that I’m really excited to catch, for my first time, is Hooton Tennis Club. The band released Highest Point in Cliff Town on Heavenly Recordings last year; it barely left my stereo for a few long weeks. They’re making their way to SXSW, and we were fortunate enough to get them a few questions on the road…check below. Read more
Night Beats have always been a band I gravitated towards, musically speaking. I’ve managed to catch their live set on several occasions, and it always seems like they had this heavy darkness that didn’t always leak through. But, it seems like their usage of two-inch tape to record their 3rd LP, Who Sold My Generation, might leave listeners bewitched. I mean, there’s psych bands, and then there’s bands that can really just rock the psychedelia and really bend your brain; these are the types I prefer…and the kind I think of when I hear the group. Look for their new LP to come via Heavenly Recordings on January 29th.