Archive for November, 2006

November 10, 2006

THE VIKING MOSES – Werewolves In The City (7″ Single)

Poptones MC5123S: 6th November 2006
1. Werewolves In The City
“Fuck the riverside PD with their helicopter shining light beam, cos I’m a biker, but not like Harley Davidson, but like the Spandex and the gloves on, sexy in the light oh”
2. Threshold Of Man
“I bow down to the mercy of your hand, cos there’s tones of shit I’ll never understand, standing at the threshold of man”

I saw The Viking Moses in October and I was shocked and pleasantly surprised to find it wasn’t just the haunting lo-fi Folk I was expecting. Brendon Massei was a spitting, shouting Rock ‘n Roll animal. Apparently he lives a nomadic life and has been on tour constantly for a decade. He lists all of his numerous recording sessions on his Website and many are still to be released (This year’s ‘Crosses’ album was actually recorded in 2002). I love the idea of an artist recording when he feels like it or when the opportunity arises and releasing it being a secondary consideration.

‘Werewolves In The City’ is a fearful story of watching Police helicopters circling above seemingly oblivious to the horrors happening below. Brendon’s croaky voice is backed by an emotional Synth and basic Hip-Hop beats. Towards the end, the anguished tone of his voice becomes truly terrifying and he screams about finding severed kid’s heads.

Judging by the songs I’ve heard, ‘Threshold Of Man’ is a more typical example of The Viking Moses’ sound. According to the liner notes it was recorded in a London cellar where he’s currently staying. An acoustic Guitar is backed by half-heard ghostly noises with Brendon’s heavenly voice gliding over it all.

You can buy a digital version of the single from 7Digital by clicking here.

Visit his Poptones site by clicking here and you can get Podcasts, mp3s, videos and lots of articles.

Here are five Viking Moses’ tracks to wet your appetite, if you like them visit his Website, HMV, Amazon, Rough Trade, Piccadilly etc to buy a couple of records.

Crosses mp3
I Will Always Love You mp3 (His heartbreaking Dolly Parton cover)
Little Emma’s Smile mp3
Sandstorms (Demo) mp3
Surrounding Skin mp3

The Viking Moses Website / The Viking Moses MySpace Page

November 9, 2006

ORPHAN BOY – Trophies Of Love (CD Single)

Concrete Recordings CONC006: 6th November 2006
1. Trophies Of Love
“Too much TV, not enough story, splinin’ out yer secrets, drunken fury, sit down concerts, cut price fashion, mellowing passion, filthy beatnik”
2. Mr Stevens
“The curtains are drawn and the lights are on, cos it’s just another day in the life of old Mr Stevens, oh Mr Stevens”

‘Trophies Of Love’ is the second single by Orphan Boy after April’s brilliant ‘Billy’s England / Postcode’ 7″ on Grace Records. The production on ‘Billy’s England’ was very poor, but the same can’t be said of either of these two tracks. It’s like the catchy Guitar Pop of the Arctic Monkeys, with the anger of Joe Strummer and all the lyrical invention Jamie T.

I’ve had a live recording of ‘Mr Stevens’ for a while and it’s become a firm favourite so it’s great to hear a studio version. It’s old-skool Punk in the mould of The Buzzcocks but with a baggy twist. They’ve added furious instrumental passages to the song for this new version that’ll have you dancing like Bez. Any song that has a shout of “Shop local!” towards the end has got to be good.

Billy’s England (Demo) mp3

Orphan Boy Website / Orphan Boy MySpace Page

November 8, 2006

SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO – Tits & Acid / Animal House (12″ Promo)

Simian Mobile Disco SMD003: 30th October 2006
1. Tits & Acid
“Instrumental”
2. Animal House
“Instrumental”

James Ford and Jas Shaw created Simian Mobile Disco out of the ashes of Simian, who’ve had a second lease of life when Justice remixed their ‘Never Be Alone’ song. This is Simian Mobile Disco’s third single after ‘Pulse’ and ‘Hustler’ (Not counting a split 12″ with Dieter Schmidt).

Picture that Jason Nevins video, now imagine it’s a warehouse full of charged up disparate Electro beats and one by one they step out from the crowd to go crazy and do their thang. If you’ve got that image then maybe you’ve got some idea of what a furious and downright brilliant mess ‘Tits & Acid’ is. It reminded me of Chris Morris’ “Cake” music, but oddly enough in a good way, and as the loathsome Bernard Manning said “It’s made from chemicals… sick bastards”. ‘Animal House’ brings to mind Kraftwerk, and that’s not just because of the music, there’s also a German guy saying “Annie-moll haus” repeatedly. It’s not quite as deliriously manic as ‘Tits & Acid’ but it’s defiantly worth a spin or two.

I’ve also just bought a fun mash-up of ‘We Are Your Friends’ by Justice Vs Simian and ‘Drop It Like It’s Hot’ by Snoop Dogg (Feat. Pharrell). I’m not completely sure who did the deed and the MySpace page simply says, “Please, please, please don’t sue us”. Click below to download it and while you’re at it, grab last years superb Snoop/Eddie Cochran mash-up and a new Rick Ross/Simian Mobile Disco blend.

Snoop Dogg Vs Justice Vs Simian – Drop Your Friends mp3
DJ Prince – C’mon Everybody Let’s Drop It Like It’s Hot mp3
Rick Ross Vs Simian Mobile Disco – Hustlin’ Hustler mp3

Here are links to watch videos for ‘Hustler’ and ‘Hustlin’ Hustler’ on YouTube.

Simian Mobile Disco Website / Simian Mobile Disco MySpace Page
Drop Your Friends MySpace Page

November 7, 2006

LAST GANG – Beat Of Blue (7″ Single)

48Crash GANG001: 30th October 2006
1. Beat Of Blue
“Well in the cell it was hell, when he scratched his fame on the wall, he’s still got his chain and ball”
2. Never Be Alone
“She said that I’ll never be the one, wasted all her time, but I seen this comin’ and I read the signs all along”

‘Beat Of Blue’ is glorious Pop-Punk in the mould of The Ramones but with a distinctly British flavour. The clattering Drums and start/stop Guitars had my body positively convulsing. The footie-chant chorus sweeps you up and when the brakes slam on for the juddery finish you really believe the last shout of “No one can stop us at all”.

‘Never Be Alone’ is like a classic lost single by The Cribs, but fortunately, without the recorded-in-a-toilet production. The chunky twang of the Bass Guitar at the start is awesome, the keyboards bring to mind ‘Walk Of Life’ by Dire Straits and it’s even got hand-claps. The infectious positivity of the chorus “Together, forever, and ever, we’ll never, be alone” would assure this track a place on the A-side of most other bands singles.

Click here to buy the single from 7Digital or buy the physical thing direct from 48Crash’s Website.

Click here to download some demos via Savefile.

Lastly, click here to watch the video for ‘Beat Of Blue’ on YouTube.

Last Gang Website / Last Gang MySpace Page / 48Crash Website

November 6, 2006

OMERTA – One More Minute (CD Single)

Northern Ambition NAM011CD: 30th October 2006
1. One More Minute
“Honestly, it really is a crying shame, that I bend my will to suit your ways, trust in me, now I’m getting old I know, that I’ll never find my way back home”
2. Follow Me Down
“The cycle must be broken, don’t want to end up like your old man, in silence with words left unspoken”
3. Isolated
“And now you’re isolated and I see you falling, growing old and breaking down, and now you’re isolated and I hear you calling, but there’s no one to save you now”

I’ve been a fan of Omerta since their first release, ‘Everyone Is Frozen / Learn To Love The System’. ‘One More Minute’ is Omerta’s third single after last October’s ‘One Chance’. I’ve just found out that “Omerta” is the Mafia code of silence, so hopefully I won’t find the severed head of some unfortunate quadruped in my bed for telling you about this release.

I can’t help feeling (Despite there being no obvious reference to it) that the lyric to ‘One More Minute’ is about Bush and Blair. It could be the militaristic cover artwork or it could be that I’ve spent the last week immersed in ‘Over There’ (A harrowing thirteen part drama set in the Iraq war that I just got on DVD). If you’re a fan of Editors then you’ll love Aaron Starkie’s deep voice, but he can also slip into a searing Falsetto. ‘Follow Me Down’ is a menacing mix of twitching Guitars and sharp Strings. ‘Isolated’ is the best of the three songs. The vocals are richly emotional and the music shimmers, pulsates and explodes.

Click here to watch the video for ‘One More Minute’ on YouTube.

Here are links to download four songs that you might have missed from the first two sold-out releases:

Everyone Is Frozen mp3
Learn To Love The System mp3 (One of 2005’s best tracks)
One Chance mp3
Synchronise Your Smiles mp3

Omerta Website / Omerta MySpace Page / Northern Ambition MySpace Page

November 5, 2006

KLAXONS – Magick (CD Single)

Rinse RINSE1CD: 30th October 2006
1. Magick
“The vision and the voice, the view from Devil’s tower, the snake with tale on tongue, the broken silver one”
2. Hall Of Records
“Every time we leave, come on dance with me, every night we leave, come on dance with me, our games end in endless harmony”
3. Magick (Simian Mobile Disco Mix)
“The glitter on the snow, the place to always go”

‘Magick’ isn’t anything like as good as ‘Atlantis To Interzone’ which made me dance like I was on fire (Literally not metaphorically).  But then again ‘Atlantis To Interzone’ was one the most insanely brilliant singles for years.  ‘Magick’ has got two sides, one is slow and menacing and the other is manic electronic mayhem.  The lyrics are influenced by Aleister Crowley’s ideas about “Magick” (‘Atlantis To Interzone’ was inspired by William Burroughs).  The chorus of “Magick Without Tears” is the title of his 1973 book.  ‘Magick’ would’ve made an excellent B-side or album track, but it hasn’t got enough substance to be an A-side.

‘Hall Of Records’ has a chorus of “Come on and dance with me” which is always gonna work. That’s lucky, because apart from that the track is a bit average.  Luckily, the always-reliable Simian Mobile Disco ride to the rescue with an epic seven minute rework of ‘Magick’.  Specially for this remix, they visited a secret temple in Tibet and recorded the chanting of the monks as they worshipped the god of dance and then later they ventured into the dark jungle and recorded the mating sound of a previously undiscovered creature (Or at least, that’s what it sounds like to me).  Simian Mobile Disco are slowly becoming one of the best things to happen to music this year.

Atlantis To Interzone (Clarky Cat Remix) mp3 (For all the Chris Morris fans)
Not Over Yet mp3 (Cover of a Grace track)

Click here to buy Klaxon’s new stop-gap import EP called ‘Xan Valleys’ from HMV for only £4.99.

Click here to read about Aleister Crowley’s ‘Magick’ on Wikipedia (Warning: Expect bollocks!).

Here are links to watch videos for ‘Gravity’s Rainbow’, ‘Atlantis To Interzone’ and ‘Magick’ on YouTube.

Klaxons MySpace Page

November 3, 2006

VINCENT VINCENT & THE VILLAINS – Johnny Two Bands (CD Single)

EMI EMVVVCD001: 30th October 2006
1. Johnny Two Bands
“It’s not easy, giving up on a friend, especially one with a voice so strong, but you always doubted the music that we made, and you were wrong, oh you were wrong, Johnny two bands”
2. Seven Inch Record
“Well today I bought a seven inch record, I’m gonna play it all night ’til the sun comes up yeah, well outside it’s all doom and gloom, I’m gonna turn it up loud, gonna dance around my room”

This is Vincent Vincent & The Villains’ first major label release after a few singles on Smoking Gun and Young & Lost Club records.  If you’ve not heard them before, they’re almost like a Rockabilly version of The Libertines.  Both songs have been doing the rounds as demos for a while, but now they’ve enlisted the help of legendary producer Stephen Street to perfect them.

‘Johnny Two Bands’ is a song about Vincent’s feelings when his band mates left to form The Rumble Strips.  It can also easily be read as a metaphor for friendship, love and life in general.  You can sing-along with the chorus and it’s The Villains’ best single since ‘On My Own’.

‘Seven Inch Record’ has got that seductive Dick Dale Surf-Guitar sound and Kevin Rowland meets Elvis vocals.  It’s an ode to that exciting feeling when you’ve dug through crates of vinyl and found that nugget of gold that everyone else has missed.  I remember having to stop myself leaping into the air when I found a copy of The White Stripes ‘The Big Three Killed My Baby’ in Camden a couple of years back with a £3 sticker on it (It goes for anything between £20 and £50 on Ebay… but I’d never sell it).

Here are links to watch videos for ‘I’m Alive’ and ‘Johnny Two Bands’ on YouTube.

Vincent Vincent & The Villains Website / Vincent Vincent & The Villains MySpace Page
The Rumble Strips Website / The Rumble Strips MySpace Page

November 3, 2006

THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE QUEEN – Herculean (CD Single)

Parlophone CDR6722: 30th October 2006
1. Herculean
“Standing by the old canal, by the gas works, celebrate the ghosts, flow by, when all love hurts”
2. Back In The Day
“Instrumental”
3. Mr Whippy (Feat. Eslam Jawaad)
“Colours and shapes, shapes and colours, we’ve walked, seen wrongs with our own eyes and have not forgotten”

In case you haven’t heard The Good, The Bad & The Queen is a supergroup with Damon Albarn (Blur/Gorillaz) on vocals and keyboards, Paul Simonon (The Clash) on Bass, Tony Allen (Africa 70/Fela Kuti) on Drums and Simon Tong (The Verve) on Guitar. ‘Herculean’ is the first single from an album that’s promised early next year and it’s produced by the ever-present Danger Mouse.

‘Herculean’ sounds allot like what you’d expect if you glued bits of Gorillaz, the Dubbier moments of The Clash, Tony Allen’s exciting Drumming and the shimmering rock of the early Verve together. It’s a wonderfully eclectic mix of sounds with Damon Albarn’s Keyboards being particularly powerful. ‘Back In The Day’ is an instrumental that I can only really describe as “Pleasant”. ‘Mr Whippy’ has Eslam Jawaad rapping in Arabic (Visit the official Website for a translation) about London over, yep, you’ve guessed it… music that sounds like an ice cream van.

You can listen to The Good, The Bad & The Queen’s live set from the Electric Proms on the BBC radio player by clicking here (Also, if you’ve got digital, stick it on the Beeb and press the red button to watch the show).

The Good, The Bad & The Queen Website
The Good, The Bad & The Queen MySpace Page

November 3, 2006

INBETWEEN DAYS – Right Here Waiting / Single Thing (7″ Single)

Remake/Remodel Records RRR002: Late November 2006
1. Right Here Waiting
“If you feel a bit down and you need someone to talk to, then I’ll be right here waiting, and if you need to scream for the sake of screaming, I’ve got ears to listen”
2. Single Thing
“When I was a young boy I dreamed about stars above, all the little things in life that would take you far, or hold you back or erase the little changes, plans you made in life”

‘Right Here Waiting / Single Thing’ is the second release on Remake/Remodel Records after the recent brilliant single by Monster Bobby. It’s the debut single by London based band Inbetween Days.

‘Right Here Waiting’ has an addictive chugging rhythm that had me banging my head along. It’s got the kind of huge Rock sound that demands to be heard on the radio and played in front of huge crowds (If the world makes any sense it will be). ‘Single Thing’ is even better and it’s got a Guitar sound worthy of Pink Floyd and U2. The lyrics reminded me of some of Michael Stipe’s finest from ‘Automatic For The People’.

These guys are gonna be huge and this is limited to just 500 copies, so grab one now. It isn’t out for about a month but you can pre-order it straight from Remake/Remodel’s MySpace Page.

Inbetween Days MySpace Page / Remake/Remodel Records MySpace Page

November 2, 2006

CAT POWER – Could We (CD Single)

Matador OLE7012: 30th October 2006
1. Could We
“What a dream, in the grass, we kissed, fell in love, too fast, too soon, love full bloom”
2. Dreams
“When I feel blue, in the night, and I want you, to hold me tight, whenever I want you, all I have to do is dream”

‘Could We’ has a sumptuous, warm Brass sound that perfectly captures the lazy summer evening that the lyrics describe.  It’s like Magnolia Electric Co. with Beth Orton singing her sweet vocals but with an added gravely rumble.

‘Dreams’ is a re-named cover of Boudleaux Bryant’s ‘All I Have To Do Is Dream’ (The Holloways covered it last week too).  It sounds a bit like when The Housemartin’s covered ‘Caravan Of Love’, but with female vocals and a Piano.  Unfortunately, Cat Power has substituted the wonderful melody of the original with a slightly inferior one of her own.  It’s still a beautiful cover, but I can’t help feeling that this could have been truly breath taking.

Click here to buy Cat Power’s latest album ‘The Greatest’ (Which includes ‘Could We’) from HMV for only £5.99.

Cat Power Website / Cat Power MySpace