So, the Radio Dept. are reissuing their sophomore effort, Pet Grief; they’re also touring the US with fellow Swedes, Hater. But! None of that is of any import, as the news is merely there to disguise a brand new song…the first in two years! Here, the band begins subtly, moving in slow with a calmed melody; it sort of reminds me of a really stripped down Clientele. Their usual haze and texturizing are absent, at least until the first minute of the song, and even then, it almost feels more like an uplifting of the initial opening, before slinking back to the trickling pop gem. They promise there’s more on the way, and I promise, I’ll be rushing to keep you up to date, as they’re one of my faves! Their US dates start in April thru early May.
Looks as though today’s coverage is going to revolve a great deal around a few bands that are so great they’ve probably slipped under your radar, like Kleenex Girl Wonder. The band has primarily been the outlet for songwriter Graham Smith, and while they’ve been active pretty recently with LPs Vana Mundi and White Lacuna, this post is here to celebrate Ponyoak, the band’s classic 1999 LP (you can stream it HERE). It’s a great collection of Smith’s songwriting, particularly if you consider he crafted the songs at the age of 18; you’ll hear nods to GBV and the Beatles alike. But! If you pre-order the LP now, you’ll get a bonus download that includes demos and out-takes from the recording session, including the tune that’s featured below; you can hear more of the bonus tracks over HERE.
What?! The Lucksmiths are sharing a new video? Didn’t that band call it quits in 2009!? Well, yes, but they’re putting out their very incredible Naturaliste on vinyl for the very first time since its 2003 release. The video takes a bunch of old video footage and compiles it into one giant story of nostalgic warmth; the band seem carefree and frivolous throughout, which is probably the way we’d all love to be remembered. I feel like the song speaks for itself, as the gentle shuffle of the guitar sound is something that’s filled my own record collection; they were one of the most consistent joys in music for so long. If you’re a fan or just getting turned onto it, the band will release Naturaliste this Friday.
First, I’d like to thank Slumberland Records for the excellent 30 Year Single Series. I paid for it, as it is one of my favorite labels, and then forgot, except when the occasional package shows up on my doorstep with delicious pop treats! Is it over? I don’t know? If so, I scored some great hits! Second, the label in the last few years has dabbled in reissuing some great stuff…the Wolfhounds, the Springfields…and now East Village. To be honest, while I should know the band, I have no idea who they are other (other than a few short paragraphs on the Cloudberry blog long ago), but I find the sampler of their Hotel Hotrod reissue to be quite up my alley. Charming and warm, lightly jangling and of the indiepop persuasion…so yes, I’m picking this up too! If Papa Slumberland can get his hands on that Another Sunny Day compilation, I’ll be quite thankful. Go check out East Village; the reissue drops on January 24th.
Amidst all the playlists and streaming platforms we often forget out history, our heroes. One such grouping, and one adored by so many, is Elephant 6. They’ve kept a low profile while we’ve all fawned over “premieres” and festival sets by DJs…but they’re making waves once again. They’ll be releasing some new music, but also going back and unleashing some old gems, like this Gerbils LP, Are You Sleepy. The band featured several members of Neutral Milk Hotel…but listening below and you’ll hear they had a sound all their own. Some of the guitars even feel like they’ve got that Flying Nun churning guitar sound, while the fuzzy pop sensibility offers up its own charms. This reissue will be out on August 9th, and you can order it HERE; it’s time we all go back to our heroes.
Everyone raved about Everybody Split when it came out, but it was a super limited release for Possible Humans, barely making its way overseas. Now, however, we’re all getting a chance to get our hands on that heralded LP, thanks of course to Trouble in Mind. Today they’ve shared a video for “Lung of the City,” which mostly features live footage lurking on the horizon why we’re shown footage of a graveyard; it matches the ominous tone of the song’s lyrics…while it’s okay to not be scared to die alone, it’s ultimately an inevitability. I love how this song just sits really open; there’s that vocal hook of the chorus, but most of the track’s about the band’s ability to flex their musical muscles. The reissue of the LP will be out on August 2nd.
One of our favorite labels at the moment, among the many is Forged Artifacts; they just announced that they’ll be jumping back into the vinyl game by reissuing Stunner by Scrunchies…an album they tossed out on cassette last year. It’s a collection of 9 powerful pop rockers, some toying with pop sensibility while others have a touch more abrasiveness driving the record. I know that “Stunner” is the obvious hit, but I’ve always been partial to “Double Vision;” I just love that bass line opening things up. Take a listen to the whole of the album, then grab a copy from FA right away!
Perhaps the greatest thing about the Internet is that it has allowed us to reconnect with lost mates, or uncover hidden gems in the music realm…and perhaps that’s what we’re getting with this reissue from Manchester act Vee VV. Below we have one of the band’s earliest singles (1983), offering up a choppy post-punk vibe; I love how the guitar cuts across the bouncing bass line, while that matter of fact vocal delivery is always sharp. It sort of reminds me of pop version of Gang of Four…that is until they start to explore with their musicianship in the song’s latter half, settling back in for a final groove to the close. Like post-punk? Like Factory Records (Tunnelvision and Section 25 in particular)? Then you’ll want to keep an eye on EDILS, as they’ll be handling the band’s reissue in early 2019…but the single is available this week!
Why not keep things in the Oceanic region for the day. Today we get news that Carpark Records will be reissuing The Beths‘ Warm Blood EP. It was originally released back in 2016, but sometimes it takes awhile for great bands to make themselves known overseas. It’s a great release, especially considering that it takes on a more pop college rock vibe, as opposed to the jangling sound most commonly known for the region. Reissue old issue, whatever, these are 5 songs to make your day a little better. Here’s to hoping that this reissue means a brand new LP is in the works around the corner.
If you have spent any time at all on this site, you surely are aware of my affinity for
, and all his projects. Most recently, it’s been with the Hayman Kupa Band, but it all began with a band called Hefner. It’s possible that they were too far ahead of their time, featuring twanging jangling guitars, clever wordplay and hooks you can’t avoid. WIAIWYA, one of my fave labels in the UK just announced they’ll be re-releasing Breaking God’s Heart, the band’s debut LP. Give this song a listen, and perhaps you’ll see why 20 years on there’s still a huge interest in the band and their work. The reissue drops this July!