‘Let Go’ is a reverb soaked rocker from Walls Come Down. The 30-year old solo artist (based in Germany) dips his toes in noise rock, shoegaze and psych on the four song collection ‘Volume 1′. Name your price and download from Bandcamp.
Walls Come Down – ‘Let Go’
The silly season has taken hold (as you may have noticed). So if you’re feeling as stretched as me right now, perhaps this ultra chill track from Eyedress will help ease the festive stress cycle. Pick up ‘Biolumine’ on Eyedress’ new EP ‘Supernatural’ via Abeano / iTunes. The Filipino producer is joined by vocalist Skint Eastwood on this tune, beautiful work.
Eyedress – ‘Biolumine’
Visit Eyedress @ Abeano Music @ Facebook.
In case you missed Miniatures new EP ‘Dis‘ last month, here’s another track to get lost in. ‘Sine’ is a prime example of how stunning noise can be! Recorded in a Melbourne bedroom, the shoegaze quartet have nailed these tracks. Name your price and download at Bandcamp.
Miniatures – ‘Sine’
Here’s a really interesting release out of Ohio courtesy of Slow No Wake. ‘Leave The Light On‘ is a dreamy psych pop tune with slide guitar, a drum machine, an organ and some trippy vocals! I’m surprised this self titled LP hasn’t received more attention. Slow No Wake is the work of solo artist Adam Theron-Lee Rensch, who knows how to throw a song together and (apparently) is no slouch in the production chair either.
Slow No Wake – ‘Leave The Light On’
If you’re a fan of woozy, downbeat electronic tunes then listen up! Germany’s Ewok Fur has released a new EP ‘Dustlights‘. The solo artist uses copious effects pedals in the search for blissful euphoria! Case in point, the analogue sounding ‘Autumn Graffiti‘ which layers synthesizers and vocals in a warm wash of reverb. Best of all, it’s free.
Ewok Fur – ‘Autumn Graffiti’
Super catchy noise pop from Austria’s Hella Comet! ‘Tinker Boat’ pairs vocal hooks with crunchy guitars before descending into a wall of noise. Find this on the foursome’s new LP ‘Wild Honey‘, available now via Noise Appeal Records.
Hella Comet – ‘Tinker Boat’
Visit Hella Comet online @ Noise Appeal Records @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.
Ceremony is a melting pot of noise rock, psych, shoegaze and 60s pop! It’s raw, personal and explosive (all of the good things rock n’ roll should be)! It’s now the solo act of Fredericksburg’s John Fedowitz (who cut his teeth in the 90s band Skywave with Paul Baker and Oliver Ackermann of A Place To Bury Strangers). As Ceremony approaches a decade of music making, the new album ‘Distance‘ is about to be released via Moon Sounds Records. This week John kindly took some time out to answer questions about the album. So grab a cup and enjoy the tunes…
The new album ‘Distance’ is out December 17 – how do you feel about the album? Are you happy with the result?
Yes, I’m very happy with this album!!!! It takes me back to when I first started writing songs for Skywave and being apart of that band. This is the first Ceremony album with live drums. We always use drum computers and the recording process was very easy just focusing on guitars and vocals. With ‘Distance’ I had to learn how to record drums again. I even stopped recording stuff direct into my recording machine. I wanted it to sound kinda shitty and raw. I love the way ‘Distance’ sounds. And all the songs on the album are so close to my heart. I’m writing love songs again. Not just being pissed at the world – ‘she broke my heart’ songs.
Tell us a little about the recording process. How did it all come together with your collaborators like Candy and Paul Baker?
Recording with Paul was always a great time! I loved hanging out with him in my studio. Sometimes it was just a drinking party with not much to show for the next day. I could tell he wasn’t much into recording with me at the end. I had to start learning how to play lead guitar and even Chris Carr the bass player at the time played some lead on a song. I would always start to write a song in my room and think of it for sometime, then have it in my mind while I played the drums. Then I learned how to play it on the bass while I recorded it. That’s how the recording process is every time for me. On ‘Distance’ it was a lot of first takes. And with Candy, I heard her humming and I could tell she had a beautiful voice. So I asked her if she would want to record with me on the song “The Summer The Sun”, I sent the demo to her in an email and she said she would do it.. It was so relaxed recording with her.
Ceremony – ‘The Summer The Sun’
‘I Want To Kiss’ and ‘Send Me Your Dreams’ cover a bunch of sonic territory – from shoegaze, to psych and noise. What inspired you?
As for ‘I Want To Kiss’, it was inspired by an oldies slow dance kinda song, I love the old girl groups like Phil Spector recorded. It would have been great if a song like that would have been played at my high school prom, and ‘Send Me Your Dreams’ yeah I was going for a shoegaze sounding song. I’ve never been good at channelling that shoegaze sound, I’m better at rock and roll, but at the time I wrote that song, almost two years ago I think… I remember Paul was doing a lot of different tunings on his guitar. You know, shoegazers always have different tunings *grin*. I wanted to try it out.. I tuned everything to E and B. Some strings were super loose and it sounded so cool!!! Then I came up with a drum pattern on the drum computer and I wrote it in one night.
Ceremony – ‘Send Me Your Dreams’
Am I right in saying the work on ‘Distance’ is primarily your own (as a solo artist)? How has this effected the sound and song writing?
Yeah, I guess I’m solo now. I never thought I would say that because I love how a band works together. Well 40% of the time:-D I miss being on stage and looking over to my band mates and giving a nod or a smile after we played an awesome show as we are taking our gear down. But ‘Distance’ started as a four piece band, then Paul left after two songs were recorded, after that Ben and Chris left to. I finished the album with me on drums, bass and guitar for almost all of it.. It never effected me in the music part. I like how it is now. It’s easy going and if I have anyone to blame I should just look in the mirror.
What have you been listening to this year? Any recommendations for SBWR readers?
Gosh – I’m not good for this question. People at work listen to your blog on their phones and I’m always loving what I hear!! But I guess other than that I bought Chad Vangaalen ‘Diaper Island’ this year and my wife turned me on to the band “I Break Horses’ – super cool!!! And I really like the last two Beach House albums. But always, always, always I’m listening to The Cure. It’s my deep dark secret, stuff like ‘Pornography’ or ‘Disintegration’. I have been listening to them since my sister showed them to me when I was 12 years old. But I won’t tell you how old I am now. Ha!!
Ceremony – ‘Can’t Say Your Name’
You’ve teamed up with Moon Sounds Records for the release, how’s the experience been? Has releasing the record digitally been the best way to get your music out there? (This is a loaded question, if you’d like to rant about the state of the biz, please do).
Yes! It’s great to have Moon Sounds release ‘Distance’!!! We met online and have a great friendship. It’s been so cool to have a record label that is so into the artist. As for the biz, it’s been the same for years for me. With Skywave we only had our albums in a handful of stores and now with record shops almost all gone, digital is the only way. What is the biz now? And what is shoegaze? Don’t you think we should come up with a new name? Some kids weren’t even born in 1991 when the shoegaze thing was going on and they are shoegazers now… maybe call it “sounds better with reverb” ha!!! okay I will stop the rant about a question that wasn’t asked. Yeah, online sales are the only way now. It’s sad.
Your former Skywave band mate Oliver Ackermann (A Place To Bury Strangers) mastered the record. How much input did he have creatively? Are you planning on working together again in the future?
Oliver is the coolest mother fucker ever!!! He is always there for me and I have never been able to return the favor. I’m hoping someday he will ask me for something and I will be there for him. He mastered ‘Rocket Fire’ for Ceremony too but the record label didn’t want it. And it’s funny, okay, Oliver from APTBS, mastering ‘Distance’ for me, and I had to send it back to him two times saying it’s not crazy enough!!!!! I called him saying “make it fucked up!!!” I always have such a great time working with Oliver and yes I hope to work with him again!!!!
What’s next for Ceremony? Are you planning on doing any shows over the coming months? Or will it be primarily a recording project?
I’m planing on a tour in the UK in 2014. I cancelled a tour last year in the UK for different reasons but my management is working on a new tour and I’m always picking up shows (up and down the east coast). I never go that much south, and I have a label in Germany I’m talking with about an EP. I have 4 or 5 songs that I want to put out. So 2014, Ceremony will still be moving and always from time to time loading a video on youtube. Oh yeah, I’m working on a side thing now with candy called ‘Shotgun Postcards’ so look out for that in 2014 too.
Visit Ceremony @ Moon Sounds Records @ Soundcloud @ Facebook.
On January 10 Melbourne’s Vulpix will release the four track EP ‘Swarms’ featuring ‘Hazy‘. This lo-fi bedroom pop tune is a little less bright n’ sunny than the furry Pokemon character Vulpix takes his name from (thanks Google). The solo project promises “over-fuzzed guitars and distance verby drum-tracks, reminiscent of 80’s romantic new-wave with glimpses of unpolished indie shoegaze”. For fans of early Wild Nothing or Beach Fossils.
Vulpix – ‘Hazy’
Visit Vulpix @ Bandcamp.
Hibou is giving away his new single ‘Hide Away’ (download) as a precursor to a full length due in 2014. The Seattle-based artist (and former Craft Spells drummer) delivered his debut EP ‘Dunes‘ earlier this year and has kept busy touring since (see upcoming shows). Hibou (aka Peter Michel) embraces his pop side on ‘Hide Away’ with some added reverb that harkens back to his jangle pop origins.
Hibou – ‘Hide Away’
Howling Owl Records are set to deliver ‘Get By’, the debut full length by Bristol rockers Towns. Remember the awesome ‘Sleepwalking‘ EP from last year? Eitherway, here’s an early peek at the new album – check out the fresh tune ‘Marbles’ below. The four piece are currently touring with label buddies Velcro Hooks – see dates.
Towns – ‘Marbles’