Weird. – ‘A Long Period Of Blindness’ [Album Premiere]

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It’s a pleasure to present the first public stream of Weird‘s forthcoming album ‘A Long Period Of Blindness’. It’s an ambient rock feast with psych swagger, shoegaze swoon and epic slow burners! The record is highlighted by some monumental tunes, namely ‘Gaze’, ‘The Sound Of Your Heartbreak’ and the single ‘Infinite Decay’. It follows Weird’s 2013 debut LP, ‘Desert Love For Lonely Graves‘ and a tour of their native Italy. The Roman band formed in 2011 with front man Marco Barzetti (guitar/vocals), together with drummer Massimiliano Pecci and Giovanni Romano (bass). ‘A Long Period Of Blindness’ will be available from March 2 via Lady Sometimes Records (pre-order here).

 
Weird. – ‘A Long Period Of Blindness’ [Album Premiere]

Visit Weird. @ Lady Sometimes Records @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.

Moon Tapes – ‘A Little Bit Of Paris / Sleepy’

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Moon Tapes released their first official singles today, ‘A Little Bit Of Paris’ and ‘Sleepy’ (download). It follows the brilliant demo ‘Back In Love’, which I gushed about last November. The Amsterdam four piece craft new wave pop gems with a reverb-heavy, lo-fi charm. ‘A Little Bit Of Paris’ should sit well with fans of The Smiths, there’s also a dash of Alex Turner to the vocals. Bright days ahead!

 
Moon Tapes – ‘A Little Bit Of Paris / Sleepy’

Visit Moon Tapes @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.

Au.Ra – ‘Jane’s Lament’

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After several years collaborating, Tom Crandles & Tim Jenkins officially release their debut album as Au.Ra next week through Felte. ‘Jane’s Lament’ is nine tracks of dream pop bliss, with added shades of psychedelia and shoegaze. It’s no surprise that the LP plays out with an unassuming confidence, after all, they’ve both honed their creative powers through previous projects. Tim in Parades and Tom under many monikers, but perhaps best known as Colours.

‘Jane’s Lament’ was conceived following improvised jam sessions and then recorded between Sydney and London. The duo’s free flowing, relaxed approach rubs off in the music. There’s no fixed formula or predictable structure. Instead, the songs weave their way into your head, which makes it a very easy album to listen to. ‘Sun’ is one example, a beautiful tune that introduces a simple melody with a slacker delivery, then evolves into a psych’ed out instrumental with reversed guitars. It’s all so smoothly done, you may find yourself drifting off.

‘Pyramid’ is brilliantly understated, with bendy melodies and a shoegazey mid section that makes you forget where the song began. Later in the album these experimental sojourns get longer with ‘Talk Show’ and ‘Spare The Thought’. It gives the album great pacing even though much of it ambles around the same tempo. Au.Ra are so good at creating atmospheres, textures and moods that ‘Jane’s Lament’ has a meditative effect. It’s one of the most enjoyable listens I’ve had in 2015, another must for fans of jangle pop, psych or dream pop. There’s so many stellar albums coming out, next week we dive into new LP’s from Echo Lake, Venera 4 and Swervedriver! In the meantime, jump into the album stream below…

Au.Ra – ‘Jane’s Lament’

Visit Au.Ra @ felte @ Facebook.

 

Au.Ra - 'Jane's Lament'
SONGWRITING
SOUND & PRODUCTION
REVERB RATING
PRO'S
  • Brilliant mix of psych & dream pop
  • Unpredictable songwriting
CON'S
  • Nope!
4.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (6 Votes)

The Black Ryder – ‘The Door Behind The Door’

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The Black Ryder‘s second studio album ‘The Door Behind The Door’ is out this week via their own label The Anti-Machine Machine. The Australian duo (Aimée Nash & Scott Von Ryper) relocated to Los Angeles following their 2009 debut LP ‘Buy The Ticket, Take The Ride’ and in the process, have re-invented themselves for album number two. ‘Buy The Ticket, Take The Ride’ is considered a modern classic among shoegaze fans, but they also had their critics at the time. The diversity and depth of ‘The Door Behind The Door’ should change that this time round, there’s enough dark and hazy textures for existing fans, and plenty of lighter moments for new ones.

Lead single ‘Santaria’ is the perfect bridge between albums, it pays homage to their roots and introduces a country tinged underbelly that sits behind the album. The ‘Rhinestone Drone’ Soundcloud tag is fitting. ‘Santaria’ is also the most shoegaze sounding track on the album. The other singles ‘Let Me Be Your Light’ and ‘Seventh Moon’ are stunning dreamy psych numbers, its mesmerizing listening. The Black Ryder benefit from interchanging lead vocalists, Aimée nails the smoky dream pop sound while Scott finds his own voice on ‘The Going Up Was Worth The Coming Down’. It’s a turning point on the record, where the reverb heavy sound is stripped back to its essential parts, proof that The Black Ryder don’t need to hide song writing behind effects boards. ‘Throwing Stones’ is another one of these ‘light’ moments, with a gospel feel that reminded me of Spiritualized’s ‘Let It Come Down’ LP.

‘The Door Behind The Door’ is a big step forward in terms of depth and maturity. Instead of indulging in genre trademarks (or repeating themselves), they’ve added more of their own character and the album is richer for it. It’s a sombre listen, and I expect it’ll be more popular with older listeners. There’s an avoidance of higher energy songs which may be a criticism by some, but that’s not really what ‘The Door Behind The Door’ is about. Instead, it’s every bit the many roomed house they promised, and with most songs running over six minutes there’s plenty to explore. The Black Ryder kick off their stateside tour this week, which heads to the UK and back again next month (see the full dates here).

Visit The Black Ryder @ The Anti-Machine Machine @ Facebook.

The Black Ryder - 'The Door Behind The Door'
SONGWRITING
SOUND & PRODUCTION
REVERB RATING
PRO'S
  • The Black Ryder re-invented!
  • Diverse album with depth
  • Guy/girl vocals
CON'S
  • Lower energy may turn off some fans
4.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (5 Votes)

Vaadat Charigim – ‘Ein Li Makon’

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Vaadat Charigim will deliver their second album ‘Sinking As A Stone’ on May 5 through Burger Records, with the lead single ‘Ein Li Makom’. It’s a brilliant reverb rocker, already praised by Brooklyn Vegan and Noisey. The Tel-Aviv trio turned heads with their debut LP ‘The World Is Well Lost’, a mix of post punk and shoegaze. Vaadat Charigim emerged from the Israeli rock scene in 2012, with a trilogy of albums planned. Catch them on tour this May (check Facebook for details).

 
Vaadat Charigim – ‘Ein Li Makon’

Visit Vaadat Charigim @ Burger Records @ Facebook.

Star Tropics – ‘Summer Rain / Swept Away’

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Star Tropics return with a beautiful twee dream popper called ‘Summer Rain’, backed by ‘Swept Away’ (download). The Chicago-based foursome capitalize on guy/girl vocals, jangly guitars and sugary melodies. Thumbs up!

 
Star Tropics – ‘Summer Rain / Swept Away’

Visit Star Tropics @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.