Montag, 24. April 2017

From The In-Box

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I subscribed several sites that promote new music. The recent days I finally found the time to check my e-mails with all the new records that was released during the last months. And I was surprised what great music was released and I didn't had it on my radar. It is too much for a single post so I will split it in various posts.

Let's start with London's Divisionists, a four-piece band playing their very own rock sound inspired by the rock history. You can find the melodic side of The Byrds, the guitar sound of Neil Young as well as a bit of Velvet Underground. Their first single is a catchy tune that reminds me sometimes at the era of pub rock and the guitar sound is a bit like Bob Mould. Namedropping? Yes but it is worth.



Inhalt (German for content) is a San Franzisco based band around Swiss born singer Philip Winger and took me back to the days of DAF, Front 242 and other bands from this genre. But with all their coolness and monotony this guys know Giorgio Moroder as well. Maybe it is sentimental but thank you guys for this trip into nostalgia.



Never thought that Italians can make a British sound like this. Influenced by The Cure, The Smiths and soft Sonic Youth Someday doesn't copy. They take the best of their influence to create a sound of their own. Someone said about them: "A sound that skips nonchalantly through impressive passages of alternative rock peppered at times with melodiously dark guitar progressions, atmospheric post-rock reverberations and interesting vocalisations" Nothing more or less.



The next band in this round is from Dublin but this duo don't stand for traditional music. Analogue Wave is an electronic duo with breakbeats, vocals and synths. Hope is a sonic call to arms in a world spinning wildly out of control, both politically and climatically, with no hope of a positive ending in sight. Seldom combined a political message with electronic sounds like these. A band to watch.

Sonntag, 23. April 2017

Surrender

the-veil

After a week of absence tomorrow I will start working again. It was necessary to get a few days off to recreate. Doing nothing special than taking a few excursions, going to a wellness place for a day and hanging around doing things at home I should have done earlier. After work we will go supporting Stuttgart on the way back to Bundesliga. Stuttgart is now at the top of the table and we will play against a direct rival Union Berlin. I think when we win this game we have a real good chance for promotion.

Today's song is by The Veil a London four-piece post-punk band that was very close to the sound of Siouxsie and the Banshees. Their records were re-released these days and they sound as fresh as they did in the mid 80's. Frankly they can't beat the Banshees but they have a very unique sound with fiery guitars and high-octave basslines.

Samstag, 22. April 2017

Century

Rare photo:


Canadian indie-pop chanteuse Leslie Feist is back with a new album soon. A few weeks ago she gave an appetizer with Pleasure from the album with the same name. Now her second single is out. Century is one of those songs that surprises. Her clear voice over a simple beat and some guitar riffs are the way we know her but after three and a half minutes the songs seems to come to an end and after a few seconds of silence an organ appears and leads us to a monotone and well known baritone. Jarvis Cocker starts a monologue about some interesting thoughts. Not that this thoughts are necessary but probably worth to spent some times over them

“Century, how long is that?” 3,155,973,600 seconds, 876,000,000 hours or 36,500 days, almost as long as one of those endless dark nights of the soul.”

Freitag, 21. April 2017

Son Of The Velvet Rat

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When this band crossed my way for the first time I thought by myself what a weird name for a band and was curios what kind of music they make. My first thought was that it will be another heavy and noisy band but I was surprised that is wasn't that way. Son Of A Velvet Rat is a long going project by Austrian musician Georg Altziebler and it leads to Americana. He shares his live living in California and Austria and the whole record has a big touch of music made in the desert. Blessed with a voice that is something between Cash, late Dylan and Cohen makes these songs worth listen to.

Donnerstag, 20. April 2017

Something Obscure On Thursday

Bildergebnis für phew band

If I think about Japanese music first thing that comes up was J-Pop a very special genre of chart orientated music. I remember this kind of music when I visited Japan seven years ago. Listening to radio stations or going for music TV you will always see this crazy dressed kids moving to just the same sound. After listening to a few songs I couldn't here any difference. But always played loud so that you feel like being in patchinko hall (it's like an amusement hall filled with one arm bandits and the music played in the background was like on an Motörhead concert). The other side of Japanese music is a sophisticated one, played by bands like Yellow Magic Orchestra. Otherwise there is a big heavy metal scene over there.

I got the news that a female Japanese artist released a new record after a longer time of absence. Hiroki Moritani aka Phew started in the late 70's when punk reached Japan and everyone was possible to start a band of his own. Aunt Sally was famous over there in these days but to be honest I've never heard of them before. Very soon she started to walk on her own paths. What means that she decided to go a more avant-garde way. She collaborated with Ryuichi Sakamoto and he showed her the way to Cologne. Her first album was recorded in Conny Plank's studio and produced by Krautrock legends Holger Czukay and Jaki Liebezeit which also played on different tracks. It is a different kind of listening to this psychedelic inspired sounds and Hiroki's voice but the often I listen to the more I like.


A few years later she returned to Cologne for her second record now collaborating with artists from Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft and Einstürzende Neubauten.





Mittwoch, 19. April 2017

Labled

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A few days ago I was out for a couple of beer with an old mate of mine and as usually we started talking about music. I can't explain why but suddenly we were talking about record labels and that a lot of them stand for a unique sound. We are not talking about classic labels like Sun Records, Motown or major companies. More about independent labels. The more time we talked the more we stuck in this theme. One named a label and the other had to add the artists the label signed or are formative to it. So I think it it will be now the start for a new series.

SST Records were formed by Greg Ginn in the late 70's in California to release material of his band Black Flag. SST's merit was to be a platform American underground music in the pre-Nirvana era. Originally featuring classic hardcore-punk they spread their spectrum during the years into alternative music.

Black Flag was the first band on the label and they sounded like The Ramones on speed with atonal guitar solos. They maintained their attitude as angry nonconformists and got their highest level when Henry Rollins joined the band.


The Meat Puppets started as another punk band from Arizona and changed their style from their second record on. Instead of noise there was suddenly alternative rock and country in their sound. Nirvana played years later three songs from their second album on their legendary MTV appearance.


Another band that made SST Records famous was Dinosaur Jr. The first three albums are all classics in alternative rock music. J. Masics's drawling vocals and distinct guitars sound with the extensive use of feedback were highly influential for many bands in the 90's.


Minutemen started as a punk band as well. But all members were so highly talented so that this post will not be complete if I won't name then. True pioneers of alternative music. Their first records are a legacy that I listened often during the last decades.


Sylvia Juncosa played guitar in SWA (the band of Chuck Dukowski after he left Black Flag) before she started a career with her own name. Her only record Nature from 1987 was one of the records I loved these days. Simply forward going aggressive hard rock.


Probably the best selling SST-artist was a trio from Minneapolis. Hüsker Dü started like many other artists as hard-core punks and developed their own unique sound album by album. Flip Your Wig was the completest record they made and it is still a timeless beauty.


Also Sonic Youth started their career on SST. Evol is probably the first record on that they created their very individual sound. Still a classic record from these days.


Probably the first cross-over record in this genre. Bad Brains made a great melange out of ingredients of hard-core punk, reggae, funk and soul. Massive basses and heavy guitars made this record a classic.



At the end a band that never got the credibility they should have. Firehose started as the following band after Minutemen was history. Instead of D. Boone Ed Crawford, a Minutemen fan played guitar.


Dienstag, 18. April 2017

Us And Them

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A few weeks ago Brian made a great post about one of the best bands from the early 60's. The Kinks and especially Ray Davis were one of my first love in music and guided me to a lot of other bands from this era. All this bands swashed over the Atlantic ocean in the mid 60's as the so called British invasion to show the natives how to play their very own sound. A lot of songs are borrowed by American blues legends or singer/songwriter but played with full enthusiasm. We don't have to discuss about their influence to the successive generations of musicians and bands because their legacy is well known and undisputed. I ask myself why Them was never featured at this place because I was always addicted to their very unique music. Originally another garage band from Belfast but blessed with one of the most soulful voices ever. Van Morrison made the difference to all the other bands and it was unavoidable that he quit the band to start a career of his own. Their legacy was only a few records under the name of Them and young people may not know that they was a band and Van Morrison was 'only' the voice.

Many artists covered their songs and this shows how great these songs are. Them made a great version out of a song originally written by Bob Dylan and the Bunnymen did it even better at the hight of their creative power.

Them - It's all over now Baby Blue
Echo and the Bunnymen - It's all over now Baby Blue

A simple three-chord song made it great. G-L-O-R-I-A seems like to be the blueprint of many songs from the post-punk era.

Them - Gloria
The 101er's - Gloria
Patti Smith - Gloria

Them - Here comes the night
David Bowie - Here comes the night

The Rivals, a British punk band from Kent, covered this song as well thinking that it was originally written by David Bowie

The Rivals - Here comes the night