Italian trio Brothers In Law have released their debut record ‘Hard Times For Dreamers‘ featuring the opener ‘Lose Control’. With a reverb obsession fit for Captured Tracks, these Pesaro boys have put together an impressive set of songs since forming in 2011.
Brothers In Law – ‘Lose Control’
As the band name suggests, Funeral Advantage isn’t the sunniest of listens! The Boston bedroom pop project have released this set of early demos to introduce themselves (grab the free download here). The four piece will appeal to fans of Wild Nothing, Beach Fossils or lovers of similarly introverted lo-fi pop. Take a listen to Funeral Advantage’s take on The Cure’s ’2 Late’, originally released as the b-side to ‘Lovesong’ in 1989.
Funeral Advantage – ’2 Late (Cure Cover)’
Bristol recording artist Oliver Wilde releases his debut LP ‘A Brief Introduction to Unnatural Lightyears’ through Howling Owl Records later this year. Take a listen to the lo-fi indie popper ’Curve (Good Grief)’ below, inspired by the likes of Elliott Smith, R. Stevie Moore and Mark Linkous.
Oliver Wilde – ‘Curve (Good Grief)’
Visit Oliver Wilde online @ Bandcamp @ Soundcloud @ Facebook.
Minneapolis continues to dish out gems, following on the heels of Pony Trash‘s EP comes a new single from Gospel Gossip! ‘Except You’ is taken from their debut self-titled album, out through Old Blackberry Way on March 19. Fans of Hope Sandoval, Widowspeak or even Beast Coast will lap up ‘Except You’. Its a sluggish dream pop tune with an alt country edge, more whimsical than their previous 7inch ‘Atlantic Blue‘.
Gospel Gossip – ‘Except You’
Guitarist/singer/pianist Sarah Nienaber explains how it all began, “Gospel Gossip started with just Ollie and I in a college-dorm basement room with an out-of-tune piano, in 2006. We soon graduated to drums and guitar, and while recording our first demos (the ultra-rare Milkshake EP), we added Justin on bass. We bonded equally over both Galaxie 500 and the power of a well-crafted pop song.”
I put Sarah on the spot and asked about her favorite piece of kit, “Around the same time, Ollie introduced me to Boss Digital Delay pedal that has since become essentially an extension of myself. That said, my favorite piece of gear is probably my toilet-seat-yellow 1966 Fender Mustang. I’ve burned through quite a few delay pedals, but the Mustang is irreplaceable.”
Minnesotans mark March 21 in your diaries, the record release party is on at 7th Street Entry (details here)! Meanwhile fellow local Chris Rose has released a record on Destijl under the moniker Robust Worlds, Chris’ band Heavy Deeds will release an EP on Old Blackberry Way this May (“like cosmic Fleetwood Mac” - listen here). To complete the picture, Sarah and Chris play together in a band called Web Of Sunsets.
Visit Gospel Gossip @ Bandcamp @ Old Blackberry Way @ Facebook.
Ironic that after 22 years waiting for My Bloody Valentine‘s third album, the server crashes on announcement and we’re left waiting that little bit longer. Thankfully it was only a few extra hours and not decades. After getting the news by text and being told to check out twitter because “people are losing their sh**,” I was one of the many on www.mybloodyvalentine.org clicking refresh until the website came back to life. Indeed people did lose their sh**, the reactions, relentless jokes and continuing disbelief are almost as entertaining as the album itself.
The music world is in a very different place today than it was when My Bloody Valentine released their previous LP ‘Loveless’, hopefully more capable of digesting the discordant notes and sunken vocals. Then again, perhaps that’s because of what ‘Loveless’ did. I write that with partial credibility, I was only a kid in ’91 and the leap from Michael Jackson to Nirvana was challenging enough. MBV didn’t stop sounding like a vacuum cleaner to me until later in the nineties.
My Bloody Valentine – ‘She Found Now’
The opener ‘She Found Now’ sounds like no time has passed. At which point, its worth noting that these recordings originate between the band’s departure from Creation Records in 1992 and their break up in 1997. Then completed over recent years (with additional sessions at Grouse Lodge, Ireland as recent as December). How many times drums or guitars have been added and then removed from each track is anybody’s guess. I’d like to hear ‘She Found Now’ with Colm drumming over it but it’s brilliant without.
My Bloody Valentine – ‘Who Sees You’
By the time the guitars of ‘Who Sees You’ kicks in, its clear that this album ain’t no Phantom Menace. Its not a dud. More importantly, it proves that ‘Loveless’ isn’t a one-off, it isn’t an island in their catologue and it wasn’t a random occurrence. The novel nature of it is lessened and that’s a good thing. The weight of expectation ‘mbv’ held on its shoulders can’t be understated. Amazingly it delivers the depth expected of it, there’s plenty of stand out moments worthy of their legacy. A large number of 30-somethings can breathe a collective sigh of relief.
Bilinda Butcher’s brilliance is as clear as ever, she takes on lead vocal duties for ‘If I Am’. It’s a dreamy pop piece where Shields’ previously stated Beach Boys influence is evident. A simple, sunny melody with subtle harmonies sneaking in towards the abrupt end.
My Bloody Valentine – ‘If I Am’
As ‘mbv’ progresses, it slowly steps out from feeling like ‘Loveless’ (part two) and into new ground. More abstract, new sounds – is that a saxophone on ‘In Another Way’!? The line between old and new may be clearer than first thought. Given that Kevin Shields has already said that a new EP is on the way (made with only current material) we could be hearing fresh My Bloody Valentine again before long. Still hard to believe it. Grab it here.
2013 TOUR DATES (SO FAR…)
Tuesday, 5th Feb – Namba Hatch, Osaka
Wednesday, 6th Feb – Namba Hatch, Osaka
Thursday, 7th Feb – Studio Coast, Tokyo
Thursday, 8th Feb – Studio Coast, Tokyo
Sunday, 10th Feb – Studio Coast, Tokyo
Saturday, 16th Feb – Westgate Entertainment Centre, Altona, Melbourne
Monday, 18th Feb – Enmore Theatre, Sydney
Wednesday, 20th Feb – Tivoli Theatre, Brisbane
Friday, 22nd Feb – Palace Theatre, Melbourne
Saturday, 9th Mar – Barrowlands, Glasgow
Sunday, 10th Mar – Manchester Apollo, Manchester
Tuesday, 12th Mar – London Hammersmith Apollo, Hammersmith
Download My Bloody Valentine’s ‘mbv’ @ www.mybloodyvalentine.org @ Facebook.
‘Rosa‘ is an interesting listen. Stylistically, I’m not sure what to make of it, nevertheless these guys have plenty of talent. It starts off as chillwave meets r&b (not unlike blog favourite Weekend). But then, takes a complete left turn and the guitars shimmer out to the edges, morphing into something altogether different. The excess of reverb holds the puzzle pieces together, almost like there’s a chorus from a different song in there. Pixelfix are an Oxford-based band and ‘Rosa’ will sit on their forthcoming EP, hear more at Soundcloud.
Pixelfix – ‘Rosa’
Visit Pixelfix @ Soundcloud @ Youtube @ Facebook.
Perhaps international readers are unaware but the facts are plain and simple, Aussie music fans pay more than their friends across the Atlantic. Perhaps this issue spreads further than the commonwealth but here are the facts using Tame Impala’s 2012 album ‘Lonerism’ as a test case (for no particular reason).
*Note that all prices are in US dollars (AUD have been converted)…
Physical Album (CD) Price
Digital Album (iTunes) Price
*In this case the physical copy is actually cheaper than the digital copy which is bizarre in itself considering the cost of manufacture/distribution and superior audio quality (supply/demand in full effect)
Touring (Show) Price
*Side note – booking fees made more sense in 1994 when I was sleeping out for Pearl Jam tickets. I bought them from John or Judy cashier who looked after my booking process, offered me a consoling look for spending the night on the sidewalk and then handed me a physical ticket. John and Judy got fired more than a decade ago but I’m still paying them a booking fee. And I print my own ticket. Even Ikea don’t charge for self serve counters. I miss John and Judy!
To state the obvious, Tame Impala are from Perth (Australia) and yet it costs less to see them in another country… wait, what!? Who are they flying with? That’s not a finger point towards the band just the state of affairs. If you do the math, Aussies pay on average 88% more (even for identical digital products). It’s a complex reality (at least I hope it is) because for the average Joe like me, it just seems like an economic do over.
In search for answers (plants tongue in cheek) I emailed iTunes…
Lang_Country : en_AU
Product : iTunes Store
Support Subject : Purchases, Billing & Redemption
GCRM Case ID : 407485162
Is there a reason why the Australian iTunes store charges more for music releases than the USA store? Even Australian releases cost less overseas. APRA/AMCOS have said that it is not due to licensing fees or copyright between territories. Local major labels receive a similar revenue share to their USA heads and given that the method of digital delivery is identical, as is the product, I can’t understand why there’s any difference in price given the Australian dollar is above parity? I don’t mean to rock the boat, just baffled is all! Thanks for any clarity you can share, James.
Greetings from iTunes Store! My name is Jam, and I will be your iTunes Store Advisor for today!
I see that you want an explanation about the pricing in iTunes Store. Let try to do my best to explain it to you.
James, the iTunes Store endeavors to offer you competitive prices on current selections. Your total price will include the price of the product plus any applicable sales tax (in effect on the day of download). Apple reserves the right to change prices for products offered at the iTunes Store at any time, and does not provide price protection or refunds in the event of a price drop or promotional offering.
You’ll find more answers to your questions about pricing and many other topics in the iTunes Store Terms of Sale:
If you have a specific question about your account, billing, downloading music, or iTunes Store content, please let me know. I will be happy to assist you further.
iTunes Store Customer Support
After reading through these terms and conditions I’ve noted that under ‘REQUIREMENTS FOR USE OF THE ITUNES SERVICE’ it states “The iTunes Service is available to you only in the United States, its territories, and possessions”. Given that the American terms of service apply to me in Australia, can the American prices apply to me in Australia too? That would be great.
Needless to say, there was no answer to be found but muddied water. It seems that these prices are charged because certain markets will simply pay more for it. That simple.
On a positive note, there are ways to get around this. Avoid the middle man and buy direct from the record label or artist. Bandcamp is just one example where fans are charged equally for digital music regardless of whether they are from New York, Brazil, Japan, Rome or Perth. Equality shouldn’t be a nail in the commercial music industry’s coffin. In the fight against music piracy, the ‘value of music’ is always argued and I agree with this completely. But the irony is that this value isn’t consistently set (in monetary terms) by the music sellers themselves.
If you’ve got knowledge, opinions or solutions please share them below! Thanks for putting up with the rant.
Apple have been ordered to a Parliamentary inquiry (together with Adobe and Microsoft) to answer for price gouging against Australian consumers. Labor MP Ed Husic led the summons, the hearing is to take place in Canberra on March 22. More info @ Financial Review.
Glasgow noise poppers The Cherry Wave have released their second EP ‘Blush‘ (this follows their self-titled EP released last July on Good Grief Records).The Scottish noise makers have tightened up, sounding more defined and better produced. Take a listen to the title track below…
The Cherry Wave – ‘Blush’
Visit The Cherry Wave @ Bandcamp @ Soundcloud @ Facebook.
Oslo shoegazers Dråpe return with the new 7inch single ‘Blue Skies’ available now through Riot Factory. ‘Blue Skies’ is a melodic psych pop tune, no doubt with more reach than previous efforts. However the B-side ‘Wash Away’ ventures back into their gazing roots, with a wall of sonic swirls.
Dråpe – ‘Blue Skies’
The five piece produced one of the stand out dream pop/shoegaze EPs of 2011 featuring the much loved tune ‘By Heart‘ which made an impact on the Hype Machine charts. Dråpe (pronounced ‘Draw-peh’) will release their debut album this April, in the meantime pick up ‘Blue Skies’ via Tiger here.
Dråpe – ‘Wash Away’ (B-side)
Download Dråpe @ iTunes / Visit @ Riot Factory @ Tumblr / Connect @ Facebook.
Introducing Cull and their debut single ‘Good People Disappear’. The duo (Chumpy and Solwat) from Sydney produce trippy psych rock – noisy, fun, with vocal harmonies and vintage styling. For fans of Crystal Stilts, Tame Impala, The Laurels or Pond. In fact, these guys would fit well on the Rice Is Nice or Ivy League rosters… if A&R are listening!
Cull – ‘Good People Disappear’