When you are involved in various other acts, like the New Pornographers (Kathryn Calder) or Woodpigeon (Mark Andrew Hamilton), its got to be difficult to lay down the pieces to a new Frontperson LP. There were, of course, other barriers like a pandemic and pregnancy, but now all the pieces have come together and the duo have announced Parade. This track is like a tricked out pop gem, something that doesn’t seem too far away from Kathryn’s other gig. There’s this synthetic key work that plays the role of the background, then it seems like everything else, including the vocals gets layered down bit by bit, building the texture into something full and enlightening. Personally, I dig the restraint, as it would have been easy to sell a hook in this, but they hold it back, letting the layers and the overlapping melodies build that joyous sensation for listeners. Parade is out April 29th via Oscar St Records/WIAIWYA.
Our friends over in the UK will likely already be all over this one, but just wanted to make sure everyone was in the know on our end, as WIAIWYA just dropped an incredible holiday compilation titled 24. It’s 24 songs from some of the finest purveyors of pop music around; Pete Astor, Love Burns, the Orchids, the BVs, and a bunch bunch more of artists we’ve been covering on this site for some time. I have a feeling there’s a little something for everyone in this mix, so feel free to sample a tune or two below, then if you feel so inclined spread the holiday cheer by telling a friend!
We take a break from our regularly scheduled brand of rock n’ roll to bring you an instrumental tune from one of our favorite, The Great Electric. This last week the band have announced that they’ll follow up last year’s debut with The Greater Electric. Here you’ll find the group texturing with layer after layer, and it all seems to slow to a halt right near the 2 minute mark, but the electronic pulse beckons you to stick around, and the sounds come falling back into you, looping around your ears with a wonderful groove that you just can’t run away from. Look for the new LP via WIAIWYA on October 1st!
After a period of gestation that lasted several decades (Rob and Steve have been friends since they were 14), we made an album as European Sun. We were just finishing the album as we first went into lockdown. This was the first time the two of us had arranged and produced a set of someone elses songs, but Steve was very trusting. He is still talking to us, and WIAIWYA were happy to put the album out, so it clearly wasnt a disaster.
In the summer, during one of those periods when it was ok to meet up with friends, we all went to our local seaside town, Hastings, for the day. We admired the sea, ate chips and made a video for Favourite Day, one of the singles off the album. Rob decided he wanted to make a set of European Sun videos that would, over time, become a collection of cards that could be put on a digital mantelpiece. This is the first: a seaside picture postcard.
A little over a week ago European Sun released their self-titled LP on one of my favorite labels WIAIWYA. But, despite being a relatively new band, the pedigree of the members is really special for all the indiepop fans (Heavenly, Talulah Gosh, Short Stories)…enough heavy-hitters to pique your interest I would reckon. We caught up with the bunch via email to chat a bit and a recipe for “Steve’s Daal.” Click on below for a great read…and be sure to listen to the entirety of the self-titled LP.
Those of you that fawning for indiepop are most assuredly going to enjoy the debut LP from European Sun. The band’s line-up alone is enough to make fans swoon, with members that have a pedigree from the the likes of the Short Stories, Heavenly, the Catenary Wires…among others. Today, we’re really happy to bring you this summery pop ditty, in hopes that you’re able to make today your “favorite day.” Steve and Amelia trade vocals to a charming effect; they offer slightly different tones, melding their melodies in some sugary swirl that sticks inside your head. For me, the juxtaposed guitar sounds definitely put a skip in my step, adding a grin to my day. The video is set up like a spectacular post card with ocean views, featuring Amelia on an ice cream cone and Steve munching some chips. This song appears on the group’s self-titled debut, out on September 11th via WIAIWYA.
Thirty years on collecting music as a hobby, and I’m still pretty into following labels. For me, WIAIWYA is one of the premiere indie labels out there, not only because I love most of the stuff they put out, but because, like my own label, I like the diversity. Sure, you can pigeonhole certain aspects, but I feel like the label has a really long arm when it comes to describing their sound. Take, for instance, two forthcoming releases, from Sea Glass and European Sun. Sea Glass seems to have this spectral quality, particularly in the way the vocals overlap time and time again; there’s also this alliteration affect that has the habit of ensnaring the listener. On the other hand, you get European Sun has sort of this Ian Dury/TV Personalities feel, particularly in the playfulness of the lyrics. The Sea Glass album Shifts is out on 8/14, with the self-titled European Sun LP dropping on 9/11. At the very least, enjoy these songs, then go dig deeper into the extensive catalogue.
Man, WIAIWYA is on an incredible roll these last few weeks; they just announced new Jeanines last week, and now we have European Sun. The band is comprised of Steve Miles and a bunch of friends, including the likes of Amelia Fletcher (Catenary Wires, Heavenly, etc) and Sarah Corrie (Velocette, Comet Gain). Unfortunately, the story behind the song’s first verse is a bit distressing, which Miles says he thought of while thinking upon his mother’s childhood; the message gets hidden beneath playfulness and dry humor, but the sentiment remains. For this reason, the John at WIAIWYA is sending folks to donate to Refuge, a center helping women and children fleeing domestic violence. You can also just skip the song and donate to a good cause HERE.
Hasn’t even been quite a year since Jeanines delighted us with their self-titled debut LP, and here they are with a fresh song and news of a new 7″ for WIAIWYA. They offer up another charming bouncer, lifting the spirits with the band’s natural energy; that’s clearly juxtaposed with some of the lyrical energy, as this is the group’s second track mentioning the “dark.” There’s also something in Alicia’s delivery of the lines like “and you” that on screen seem like they’d add nothing, but listen through to this song and you’ll be swooning like the rest of us. Things Change 7″ will be out on March 6th.
Admittedly, Withered Hand wasn’t on my radar until Slumberland Records helped released New Gods; I then, of course, went back to pick up Good News, his first album. Where is this going, you ask? Well, four songs off of Good News have been re-recorded with accompanying strings, and it seems fitting that we share those, if and only to share our affinity for Dan Wilson’s craft…not to mention the great labels that are sharing in this release, WIAIWYA and Fika Recordings. The below song is a great example of the emotional pull that can be added via string accompaniment, and man, throwing that in with a Wilson penned tune is likely to make me cry. Except I can’t because it’s cold here, like my heart. The Ten Years EP is officially out on December 20th.