Monthly Archives: May 2009

Suckers – Suckers (2009)

One of the more unfortunate band names currently going around. Brooklyn based and produced by one of the manly men from Yeasayer. Track four in particular is the one to watch out for, with its somewhat deft combination of Spencer Krug-esque vocals, horns and whistling it should tickle the fancy of awesome people everywhere. Currently touring with Rock Plaza Central, +1 for hype.

Rating: 7.5/10

Sounds Like: Sunset Rubdown if Spencer had signed with Asthmatic Kitty.

Click here to sample.

Click here for the band’s page.

Seefeel – Quique (1993)


This record was so staggeringly ahead of it’s time that people are still working to catch up, and unlike Loveless or even Souvlaki, never received the hype to push them moreso into the public consciousness. They had the standard lineup of a rock band, but ended up producing brilliantly hazy shoegaze-electronica, which in turn saw them signed to Warp Records in 1995. This album, though, is one of the great early works of it’s genre. It is subtle and affecting all at once. Please listen to it.

(also, I have the bonus disc from the re-release, can upload if anyone specifically requests)

Please click here to sample the album

Please click here to purchase it

We All Have Hooks For Hands – The Pretender (2007)

Kind of cycling into a mode where the only bands that make the cut have in excess of six members. At least one of these people must be involved with alternatively the triangle, the tambourine, or miscellaneous percussion. This record was completely slept on when it came out and is representative of the great work being done by Afternoon Records. Set your jangle-meter to 100% and get ready for some outrageously reckless seven-plus member sing alongs. Warning: may contain shouty bits.

Rating: 9/10

Sounds like: An instrument factory on fire and people are trying to rescue the instruments except instead of getting burnt it just tickles their feet.

Click here to sample.

Click here to visit the band’s page.

Kes Band – s/t (2008)

kes band

This is the full band reincarnation of oddball Melburnian songwriter Karl E. Scullin of acoustic outfit KES. For an artist used to lonesome acoustic sets, Karl’s peculiar, literate pop songwriting blooms resplendently with the help of his grandiose backing band; flutes, violins, you name it. His distinctive child-like vocals and eccentric lyrical delivery meld gracefully with the band’s freak-folk-rock leanings, idiosyncratcially blending lilting 60’s-esque melodies with crescendos of guitar-driven breakdowns that carve out an album of strange, intricate songwriting that, with each listen,  you can discover something beautiful that went unappreciated before .

Best track: Gentle Elf
Points of reference: Not like anything you’ve heard.

Sample the album

Here’s their myspace

You can buy the cd here

New Order – Western Works demos (7 sept, 1980)

Mythical bootlegs of New Order’s first ever demos, recorded at the Western Works studio owned by Cabaret Voltaire a few scant months after Ian Curtis’ death, have been in circulation since the 80’s – in very low quality form. It’s another matter entirely when someone rescues the original 1/4 inch tape reel recordings from eBay and digitizes it. Yes this is release-ready quality. As far as I can tell, we’re the first blog to post this in MP3 format, with the credit for both unearthing this artifact and uploading the FLAC going to this wonderful blog. I don’t really care how long it’s been since your Joy Division/New Order phase. This is something worth hearing.

Two versions of Peter Hook’s lead vocals expedition, Dreams Never End, both markedly different from the album version? Check. First version of an unreleased track (Homage) with audible/decipherable vocals? Check. Ceremony, the “last Joy Division song” and eventual first New Order Single, with the drummer singing? Check. Alternate take on Truth? Check. And, wait for it, a previously unheard jam session track with Rob Gretton (their manager!) on vocals and Cabaret Voltaire members contributing also? Yeah, that too. Go nuts guys, this is quite the piece of history, and it’s quite listenable also.

Please click here to sample the demos.

Blue Roses – s/t (2009)


For those who need their recommendations to come with soundalike comparisons, see Kate Bush, Joanna Newsom, Espers and even Brisbane’s own McKisko. Ultimately though, these songs resist comparison, and are instead an outstandingly strong debut by one of those rare songwriters who deserves every ounce of the acclaim that may come their way. Simple, uncluttered, engaging and utterly gorgeous. Please give it a try and do tell me what you think.

Please click here to sample the album

Please click here for her Myspace, with links to purchase.

Elbows Like Swords – Demos (2009)


Elbows Like Swords is this dude Adam from Edinburgh, Scotland, whose raging, boiling spitfire synthpop at times recalls the majesty of Xiu Xiu at their most danceable and ferocious. He hasn’t got much out at the moment, but the few songs I’ve compiled here herald amazing things to come. Messy, quivering and catchy, this sound is best described by Adam’s own words: “…drowning in a nightclub toilet while your favourite song plays in the next room”.

Download the demos
Here’s his myspace