My Pet: Lazy Day

For the fifth edition of ‘My Pet’, Tilly Scantlebury, the brain behind Lazy Day – one of the catchiest indie bands around – tells us about her loyal Labrador Stanley, and the instrumental role pets have played in her life: “My big brother was really into dogs as a kid, I think ‘dog’ was his […]

October 2019 – 15 Songs

Welcome to October 2019 – 15 songs. Our 15 favourite tracks from October. Enjoy listening and reading the accompanying descriptions. If you’re in a real rush, skip to the bottom for the Spotify playlist. We promise we won’t cry. Basement Revolver – Have I Been Deceived Canada’s Basement Revolver released new EP ‘Wax and Digital’ on Friday […]

Showcase Announcement: Crake + Gold Baby

After being hand-picked by Big Thief’s Buck Meek to support the band on their European tour, Crake return to Manchester to play our first 2020 showcase on Saturday, February 8th! The Leeds quartet released single ‘Glycerin’ to praise from The Skinny, Gold Flake Paint and For The Rabbits earlier this year, later giving the song […]

New song: Basement Revolver – Have I Been Deceived

Canada’s Basement Revolver released new EP ‘Wax and Digital’ on Friday (25 October), following up their debut full-length ‘Heavy Eyes’. Its standout moment is ‘Have I Been Deceived’, a shimmering, lush track with a deceptively dark subject matter. ‘Have I Been Deceived’s bright glimmer makes it easy to miss Chrisy Hurn’s (singer/guitarist) bleak words. Under […]

Five Right Now: Great Grandpa

Great Grandpa released their second full-length ‘Four of Arrows’ on Friday (25 October). In our album of the week review, we said: “Four of Arrows’ is an unselfish album that doesn’t promise to fix us, but is invested in the we, in the fact that all of us are here and drenched in it together.” […]

Track by track: Amy O

Adulthood often forces us to lose sight of the inner child who exists inside all of us. The child, who simply did things for the sake of it, gets lost amidst the ever-increasing heap of bills, appointments and shopping lists. On ‘Shell’, Amy O endeavours to rediscover the traits she had as a child and […]

Album of the Week: Great Grandpa – Four of Arrows

By Sage Shemroske Great Grandpa draw from the tarot deck when handing us their second full length LP, ‘Four of Arrows’. In a tarot deck the Four of Arrows are a sign that you’re in need of introspection, quiet, recovery. The card indicates faith in counsel or help. And so it goes. Though the wetness […]

New Song: Mayfly – Selfish Girl

‘Selfish Girl’ sees London’s Mayfly take aim at narcissists who refuse to acknowledge their privilege. Written and produced by London’s Elena Garcia (Mayfly), ‘Selfish Girl’ is anchored by synths that carry the same ice as the song’s sentiment. Garcia’s vocal is cool and assured above, snarling “For the fifth time today you’ve addressed your wealth”. […]

New Song: Grizzly Coast – High Functioning

When our friends and family think we’re at our happiest and most achieving, we’re often screaming internally. As humans we’ve evolved to hide our deepest insecurities  in the often irrational fear that they’d derail the high-esteem that friends and family hold us in. Toronto’s Alannah Kavanagh aka Grizzly Coast explores this strange paradox on ‘High Functioning’. […]

Five Right Now: Shhe

‘Five Right Now’ is a new series where musicians tells us about five current tracks they love. First up, we have electronic musician Su Shaw, better known as Shhe. The Dundee-based act only had to release one single, ‘Eyes Shut’, to find herself signing a record deal with Björk’s label One Little Indian Records and opening for Kathryn Joseph on her UK […]

New Song: JFDR – Taking A Part of Me

A huge Balloon Machine favourite, JFDR (Jófríður Ákadóttir) is the only artist I’ve made two separate five hour round-trips to London to see. Having only released one album under her JFDR moniker, Ákadóttir is perhaps more known for her work as Pascal Piñon, her folk-infused project with twin sister Ásthildur,  and Samaris, an electronic project with […]

Album Review: Miniature Tigers – Vampires in the Daylight

By Anjali DasSarma Miniature Tigers’ ‘Vampires of Daylight’ chronicles the violent, difficult, heartbreaking break-up and resulting depression of chief songwriter and frontman, Charlie Brand. His band’s sixth record, ‘Vampires of Daylight’ is an essay-like collection of Brand’s own struggles with blame and acceptance of an ending.  “I wrote you a record and threw it away […]

New Song: Julien Baker – Tokyo

There are few artists able to command your attention so entirely as Julien Baker. Whatever household task your involved in, her voice sounding from your speakers instantly stops you in your tracks, the washing you’re carrying instantly becoming weightless.  Her new single ‘Tokyo’ – part of the Sub Pop singles series – is no different. […]

EP Review: Pallas Athene – Pallas Athene

Pallas Athene, the electronic project of Toronto’s Breanna Johnston, was borne from adversity. Injuring her hands in a construction mishap, the then folk and rock musician had to put down her guitar in order for her hands to heal. Not beaten though, Johnston threw herself into electronic music – a voyage less strenuous on her […]

EP Review: Soot Sprite – Sharp Tongue

By Sage Shemroske ‘Sharp Tongue’ quickly immerses you in ‘Bleed’, a frayed picture of a song. Vocalist and guitarist Elise Cook plainly speaks, “you’ve got such a sharp tongue, you’re gonna hurt someone” as drummer Matthew Tiller supports and steadies the sentiment. It’s a piece of advice given from someone that has already been victim […]

New song: Lazy Day – Real Feel

The brainchild of Tilly Scantlebury, London’s Lazy Day have followed up their ‘Letters’ EP with new single ‘Real Feel’. Their most angsty, most visceral track yet, ‘Real Feel’ sees Scantlebury take on her inner voice with brute force. With her voice right out front on the mix, Scantlebury howls “but you always blame me / […]

Album of the Week: Suggested Friends – Turtle Taxi

On ‘Turtle Taxi’, Suggested Friends bracingly glare elites in the eye whilst making music that’s outrageously fun. Self-defined as “a queer choir of mostly lesbians”, Suggested Friends interweave tongue-in-cheek masculinity with their  generous blend of country, jangle pop and folk-rock. It’s a collection of ten bombastic, hook-filled bangers; as if nobody in the studio ever said, […]

EP Review: Hollan – Ready as the Day

With ‘Ready as the Day’, Anna Manotti, who releases music under the moniker Hollan, has created an unabashed singer-songwriter EP with enough ambiguity and bite to keep you hooked. Though buoyant in rhythm, ‘Weakness’ comes affixed with splicing guitars and a crackling vocal that add spice on an otherwise sweet harmony, “In my dreams / […]

Premiere: No Swoon – Forward

Brooklyn duo No Swoon return today with ‘Forward’, the second single from their forthcoming self-titled record. Formed primarily around two opposing synths, the first is acid tinged, slinking around corners with its snake-like groove, the second is discordant, a sledgehammer taken to a brittle window. Together they sound almost seedy, granting listeners access to a […]

September 2019 – 15 Songs

Welcome to September 2019 – 15 songs. Our 15 favourite tracks from September. Enjoy listening and reading the accompanying descriptions. If you’re in a real rush, skip to the bottom for the Spotify playlist. We promise we won’t cry. Alessi’s Ark – Sacred It feels strange to hear a song exhuming the joys of summer […]

New song: Great Grandpa – Digger

Great Grandpa have entered new territory on forthcoming sophomore record, ‘Four of Arrows’. The soundscapes are gargantuan in scale while the lyrics are vulnerable, raw – it’s truly one of 2019’s great records. Written about mental illness, the shocking shifts of pace in ‘Digger’ are suggestive of that whirlwind of emotion; everything seems to be […]

New song: Alessi’s Ark – Sacred

It feels strange to hear a song exhuming the joys of summer just as the rains arrive overhead and a chill begins to stand in the air. However, ‘Sacred’, the new single from Alessi’s Ark, the long-running project of songwriter Alessi Laurent-Marke, arrives at the perfect time allowing for the listener to spend cold nights […]

Album of the Week: Field Guides – This is just a place

Time-lapse cameras are often situated in forests to capture a plant’s growth from seed to full bloom. The final product, often seen in David Attenborough documentaries, is electrifying to the senses, the lapsing of the frames making it appear like the plant flourished in minutes rather than months. A Field Guides song is kind of […]

Premiere: Old Amica – Collisions

Though seven albums into their career, we first became aware of Sweden’s Old Amica mere weeks ago after friends Fox Food Records released ‘Julia, Umea’, the first single from forthcoming album ‘Constellations’. Opening with a heavily autotuned vocal, the song is initially like a blurred image, the fade reducing overtime to reveal a flowering, bounteous […]

New song: Coral – find me wrong

Coral’s debut single ‘find me wrong’ is as fragile as an insect navigating a busy footpath; one accidental stomp away from disintegration. Formed around a reeding guitar, the track almost feels perilous, as if you could fall in the silence that lies between each pluck. Sharing characteristics with Tomberlin, ‘find me wrong’ is tender and […]