My Pet: Alessi’s Ark

For the fourth edition of ‘My Pet’, Alessi Laurent-Marke, the brain behind the ethereal Alessi’s Ark, tells us about her Labradors Saxon and Shadow. She wholesomely writes about their love for walnuts, digging and birthday cake below: “Pets have always played a hugely important role in my life. My Aunt has always had cats and […]

Review: Rose Dorn – Days You Were Leaving

“Excuse me but I have to take a call outside / Joey or Jamie can stop me from crying”, Scarlett Knight sings on opener ‘Big Thunder’, in a line that mentions both her bandmates Joey Dalla Betta and Jamie Coster. That line is the Raison D’etre for Rose Dorn’s ‘Days You Were Leaving’, an album […]

August 2019 – 15 Songs

Welcome to August 2019 – 15 songs. Our 15 favourite tracks from August. 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. The Big Moon – It’s Easy Then ‘It’s Easy Then’ from The Big Moon is gargantuan, a […]

New song: Great Grandpa – Mono no Aware

Built around a frankly anthemic chorus, Great Grandpa’s ‘Mono no Aware’ – the first taste from sophomore record ‘Four of Arrows’ – is a contemplation on the fleeting nature of memory. Led by warm, wistful guitars, ‘Mono no Aware’ also has Bon Iver-like electronics in the shadows – their spirit-like presence personifying the fragmented, childhood […]

New song: Dry Cleaning – Goodnight

Dry Cleaning were a highlight of Greenman 2019. The dead-eyed look of singer, or more accurately speaker, Florence Shaw as she delivered her lyrical tirade – comprised of overhead conversations, YouTube comments and adverts – paired with the band’s wiry, fraught riffs almost chainsawed the stage in half.  ‘Goodnight’, the opening song from their debut […]

New song: Sumie – Moon

By Anjali DasSarma “Moon” by Sumie is the perfect gentle lunar song. The careful and delicate piano contrasts against the direct and certain vocals. “The whispers of a morning tune/A sister’s lullaby,” Sumie sings. The flow of the song has the perfect amount of ups and downs, an early morning porch swing overlooking a hill. […]

Album of the week: Boy Scouts – Free Company

When Kurt Vile sang “Walkin’ in a pretty daze”, little did he know he’d just perfectly described the feeling of listening to Boy Scouts’ third full-length, ‘Free Company.’ Taylor Vick’s (Boy Scouts) illusory soundscapes bathe the listener in a near-permanent splendour. Album-wise its closest sibling is Sun June’s nigh-on perfect ‘Years’, in that both records […]

Premiere: Rey Villalobos – Donut Girl

Joy Division’s live recording of ‘Sister Ray’, originally a Velvet Underground song, at London’s Moscow Club in 1980 has become notorious, legendary even. Los Angeles’ Rey Villalobos’ pairing of basement, lo-fi effects and his acerbic Lou Reed-like croon on new single, ‘Donut Girl’ brings that historic recording to mind.   The follow-up to ‘Breathe’, this is […]

The long read: Johanna Samuels

As soon as LA songwriter, Johanna Samuels and I exit the side-door of Todmorden’s Golden Lion pub, she whispers “one second” before pulling her phone out and recording the black Labrador flayed out in front of us with accompanying ‘awwwws’. “I miss my dog so much”, she laments – June, her three-year-old terrier mix, has […]

Album of the Week: Ghost Orchard – bunny

Ghost Orchard’s ‘bunny’ is an absurd, fragmented account of falling in love that pays little attention to chronology. A rainbow-like assortment of electronic-come-rnb gems, ‘bunny’ percolates quietly before assaulting your senses entirely, just as much as dopamine overtook its creator, Sam Hall, at the tender age of 18.  So amazed was he at the intensity […]

New song: Field Guides – Guessing at Animals

On ‘Guessing at Animals’, the lead single from forthcoming album ‘This is Just A Place’, we find Field Guides’ king pin, Benedict Kupstas experiencing infatuation for the first time following the dissolution of a long-term relationship. “The night I met her / I was feeling kind of rough”, he sings, her presence lifting him from […]

My pet: Wasuremono

For the third edition of ‘My Pet’, Wasuremono vocalist and guitarist, William Southward tells us about his former dog Olive. “Don’t Play With Ghosts (For Olive)”, from their debut album ‘Are You Ok?’, is a tribute to his old pal, where the Bradford-on-Avon based artist imagines passing on and joining her once again in the […]

New song: Soot Sprite – Bleed

Soot Sprite’s ‘Bleed’ is a breezy pop song darkened by an encroaching, ominous undercurrent. Originally a solo project for singer/guitarist, Elise Cook, ‘Bleed’ is their first release as a full, collaborative band, and an intriguing taster of ‘Sharp Tongue’ – their forthcoming EP on Specialist Subject Records. A start of shimmering, shoegaze-like guitars is soon […]

New song: German Error Message – Fine

After five years of near silence, Paul Kintzing (German Error Message) has had a busy 2019, releasing his fifth album ‘Mend’, an electronic record under the moniker Other Nothing and producing one of the year’s standout singles, ‘Count to Five’ from Bedroom.   His purple patch continues with new single ‘Fine’, an expansive song hinting at […]

New song: Longriver – Wasting Time

The project of Austin songwriter David Longoria, Longriver’s debut single ‘Wasting Time’ is a direct, occasionally funny, look at procrastination- something we could all do with a little more of! With meandering guitars and creeping hand percussion, Longoria imbibes the fragmented, dreamlike state present in latter day Cass McCombs. While embellished with an organ later […]

New song: Big Thief – Not

Big Thief today announced their second album of 2019, ‘Two Hands’, with the studio recording of live favourite ‘Not’. Since first hearing it back in 2017, ‘Not’ has become an unhealthy addiction, the YouTube live performances stealing chunk after chunk of my battery power. The repeated shouts of ‘not’ instilling a form of rebellion in […]

New song: The Big Moon – It’s Easy Then

‘It’s Easy Then’ from The Big Moon is gargantuan, a glorious slice of alt-pop that wouldn’t have looked out of place on Lorde’s Melodrama. Like the unstoppable rise of smoke ascending into the air, ‘It’s Easy Then’ just swells and swells from the first chorus, the blending voices urging each other to go one octave […]

New song: Cross Wires – Paradise Club 1953

Instilled with the bawdy angst of a Joy Division live recording, Cross Wires’ ‘Paradise Club 1953’ is a swaggering signal of intent from the East London four-piece. The bass riff jousts with the high wire-like electric guitar in the song’s opening, granting lead singer Johnathon Chapman space to posture and flex his muscles. The riffs […]

Album of the week: Lilith – Safer Off

Made by three best friends who met at a band camp, Lilith’s debut album ‘Safer Off’ is the sound of a lasting friendship built on patience, knowledge and intimacy. So comfortable are the trio in one another’s company that each band member is able to express their musicianship without fear. An artistic freedom that has […]

Interview: Ralph Castelli

By Anjali DasSarma Hailing all the way from Alaska, 22-year-old Ralph Castelli first began making music in the woods of his native state. At 18 he moved to Australia to study composition and production before finally finding a home in LA. That new home is where Castelli cultivates his uniquely blended bedroom pop, which influences […]

New song: Suggested Friends – Cygnets

Self-defined as a ‘small choir of mostly lesbians’ on their Bandcamp, queer DIY quartet Suggested Friends returned this week with the wonderfully jaunty ‘Cygnets,’ the first taste from second record ‘Turtle Taxi’.  In spite of the fairly recent addition of Mammoth Penguins’ vocalist and songwriter Emma Kupa, Faith Taylor keeps a hold of the mike […]

Track by track: Wovoka Gentle

“We like noise,” London trio Wovoka Gentle say understatedly of their sound. With a love of folk as their kernel, Wovoka Gentle build outwards from there, adding jarring bleeps and bloops, field recordings and drum machines to make something truly hedonistic. A kaleidoscopic soundworld first dreamt up in the minds of twins Ellie and Imogen […]

Interview: Merival

On a rare occasion that Anna Horvath (Merival) attended school – she was home-schooled for years from her isolated, rural farm– she heard her Art teacher say, “the more you know, the less you know!” It’s an idiom that has become truer to her over time, the Toronto singer-songwriter increasingly aware of how tiny her […]

Album of the week: Merival – Lesson

It’d be fair to say that Merival’s ‘Lesson‘ comprises of eight arrangements rather than songs. Her baroque waltzes indicative of an artist at play, resisting the modern-day pop song structures to fit in a classical mould occupied by Kate Bush and Joanna Newsom. It’s telling of Toronto’s Anna Horvath, the inherently curious artist behind Merival. […]

July 2019 – 15 Songs

Welcome to July 2019 – 15 songs. Our 15 favourite tracks from July. 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. Ada Lea – yanking the pearls off around my neck “yanking the pearls off around my […]

Premiere: Lightning Bug – Vision Scraps

When ambient musician Grouper formed shoegaze band Helen, Liz Harris (Grouper) brought her ear for how sound moves and immerses to the genre, embellishing her band with a sound engineer-like edge. It’s a quality apparent on ‘Vision Scraps,‘ the second single to be taken from Lightning Bug’s sophomore album ‘October Song.‘ Led by New York’s […]