Hibou – ‘Dissolve’

hibou-artwork

This week Stereogum dished the news of Hibou‘s debut full length (‘Hibou’ is out September 18 via Barsuk Records). It kicks off with the fantastic single ‘Dissolve’. The Seattle-based solo act (Peter Michel) has been crafting jangle pop (meets dream pop) for several years now, last releasing his ‘Dunes’ EP back in 2013. Hibou’s latest echoes his Craft Spells origins and points to an exciting LP.

 
Hibou – ‘Dissolve’

Visit Hibou @ Bandcamp @ Barsuk Records @ Facebook.

The Bilinda Butchers On Tour With Craft Spells

bilinda-butchers-band

The Bilinda Butchers are hitting the road this month for an epic tour of the USA and Canada! The San Francisco-based trio delivered one of the best (and most memorable) albums of 2014 with ‘Heaven’, a concept album that weaved dream pop with shoegaze and spoken word. Orchid Tapes’ first vinyl pressing sold out before release but there’s a new run shipping early next month (pre-sale online). The trio hope to have these available on tour, along with Japanese CD copies. Fellow Californian’s Craft Spells will be joining them on the road, a great mix musically. Who knows, maybe there’ll be a collaboration before too long!? *wink wink, nudge nudge*

The Bilinda Butchers – ‘The Lover’s Suicide’ [Video]

The Bilinda Butchers Tour Dates:

2-25-15 (Wed) San Francisco, CA-GAMH w/ Craft Spells (Noise Pop show)
2-26-15: (Thu) Santa Barbara, CA – SOhO w/ Craft Spells
2-27-15: (Fri) LA, CA- Echoplex w/ Craft Spells & Meishi Smile
2-28-15: (Sat) San Diego, CA The Hideout w/ Craft Spells
3-01-15: (Sun) Phoenix, AZ- Crescent Ballroom w/ Craft Spells & Celebration Guns
3-03-15: (Tue) Austin, TX- Red 7, w/ Craft Spells & White Walls
3-4-15: Dallas, TX- Club Dada w/ Craft Spells & Glasir
3-5-15 Nashville, TN- The High Watt w/ Craft Spells & the Keeps
3-07-15: Atlanta, GA-529 Club w/ Craft Spells & Twin Studies
3-08-15: Asheville, NC- The Mothlight w/ Craft Spells
3-10-15: Washington DC- Comet Ping Pong “La Luz, Craft Spells, The Sivas & The Bilinda Butchers”
3-12-15: Philadelphia, PA- Boot & Saddle w/ Craft Spells & Suburban Living
3-13-15: New York, NY- Mercury Lounge w/ Craft Spells & Ski Lodge
3-14-15: Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Night Bazaar w/ Craft Spells
3-15-15: Allston, MA- Great Scott w/ Craft Spells &Funeral Advantage
3-17-15: Toronto, ON- Hard Luck Bar w/ Craft Spells
3-18-15: Ann Arbor, MI-Blind Pig w/ Craft Spells & Gosh Pith
3-19-15: Chicago, IL- Schuba’s Tavern w/ Craft Spells& Tiny Fireflies
3-20-15: Minneapolis, MN-First Avenue w/ Craft Spells
3-21-15: Lincoln, NE w/ Craft Spells w/ Craft Spells & Yesh
3-23-15: Denver, CO-Hi-Dive w/ Craft Spells & Pillar Point
3-24-15: Salt Lake City, UT-Kilby Court w/ CraftSpells & KoalaTemple
3-25-15: Boise, ID-The Crux- Treeport Music Fest w/ 350 bands including TV on the Radio, Built to Spill
3-26-15: Portland, OR- Mississippi Studios w/ Craft Spells & Appendixes
3-27-15: Vancouver, BC- Electric Owl w/ Craft Spells
3-28-15: Seattle, WA- Neumos w/ Craft Spells

Visit The Bilinda Butchers @ Orchid Tapes @ Bandcamp @ Facebook.

 

Craft Spells – ‘Nausea’

CRAFT SPELLS - 'NAUSEA'

Craft Spells new LP ‘Nausea’ has arrived amongst a busy week of new album releases (including newies by The Fresh & Onlys, Stagnant Pools, Vaniish and Towns). Lead single ‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide‘ arrived in March and revealed the quartet’s progression since their 2011 debut ‘Idle Labor’. The Craft Spells sound has been fleshed out with added instruments. It’s a much more natural and “live” approach than their 2012 EP ‘Gallery’. The second single ‘Komorebi’ confirmed this with orchestral sounds, a twist on their jangle pop debut. But is it an improvement?

This is the first time the San Francisco-based band have recorded with a full line-up in a studio with a producer in tow. So there’s more polish, the production is a big step up, no question. ‘Nausea’ was conceived on piano by front man Justin Paul Vallesteros and there’s a lot of beautiful sounds on the record. Thankfully, there’s also a lot of reverb too! But sadly, the translation from the piano to the finished product lacks some lustre. There isn’t really enough songwriting weight or ideas to justify the elaborate production gloss. The simple melodies worked well enough on the lo-fi sounding ‘Idle Labor’, it matched the style of songwriting so why switch? As the saying goes “less is more”.

That said, there are some strong moments beyond the stand out singles. ‘Twirl’ is a fun twee pop tune that doesn’t take itself so seriously and ‘Laughing For My Life’ has some unpredictable twists. Overall, it’s worth the ride for existing fans but is unlikely to convince many new ones. ‘Nausea’ is available now via Captured Tracks.

Visit Craft Spells @ Captured Tracks @ Facebook.

Craft Spells - 'Nausea'
Songwriting
Sound & Production
Reverb Rating
PRO'S
  • Strong singles
  • Well crafted production
CON'S
  • Lacks songwriting depth
3.4Overall Score
Reader Rating: (6 Votes)

Craft Spells – ‘Komorebi’

CRAFT SPELLS - 'NAUSEA'

Craft Spells deliver their new single ‘Komorebi’ in the lead up to the forthcoming album ‘Nausea’ (out June 10 via Captured Tracks). The San Francisco-based jangle poppers have fleshed out their sound, adding a lush orchestral layer that sets them apart. If you missed the lead single ‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide’, check it out here.

Craft Spells June Tour Dates…

6/13 – Brooklyn, NY – Captured Tracks Northside Showcase – Warsaw*
6/14 – Washington, DC – Rock & Roll Hotel**
6/15 – Baltimore, MD – Ottobar**
6/17 – Columbus, OH – Rumba Cafe
6/18 – Bloomington, IN – The Bishop
6/19 – Chicago, IL – Township
6/20 – Ferndale, MI – The Loving Touch***
6/21 – Toronto, ON – NXNE
6/21 – Montreal, QC – Il Motore
6/23 – Boston, MA – Brighton Music Hall

Craft Spells – ‘Komorebi’

Visit Craft Spells @ Captured Tracks @ Facebook.

Craft Spells – ‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide’

CRAFT SPELLS - 'NAUSEA'

Craft Spells are giving away the first single from their forthcoming album ‘Nausea’ (out June 10 via Captured Tracks). The Californian jangle poppers are sounding a little more like their earlier work, only with some added production flourishes (like the strings we hear in ‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide’). Lead man Justin Paul Vallesteros has been honing his song writing powers over the past five years and Craft Spells latest is a good indication of that. While the 2012 ‘Gallery’ EP was fun, it fell short of expectation after their much loved debut ‘Idle Labor’, fingers crossed ‘Nausea’ is another step forward.

 
Craft Spells – ‘Breaking The Angle Against The Tide’

Visit Craft Spells @ Captured Tracks @ Facebook.

Gathered Ghosts – 'Maze'

Fresh lo-fi, jangly dream pop from Washington’s Gathered Ghosts. Founding member Javier Suarez (also of Craft Spells) released their debut self-titled LP in July 2011, followed by the ‘Fluttering So Sweetly’ EP in 2012. ‘Maze’ (free download) is taken from Gathered Ghosts second album ‘Decoration Haze’, available from March 12 here.

 
Gathered Ghosts – ‘Maze’

Order Gathered Ghosts ‘Decoration Haze’ here / Connect @ Facebook.