We have been bigging up Danish superstar in the making, Karen Marie Ørsted (MØ), here at the Lion Share for the last 9 months or so, as she built an audience by releasing one excellent single after another & playing amazing shows, in mid-afternoon festivals and support slots. Her debut album ‘No Mythologies to Follow’ is finally due on 10th March so to whet your appetite bit more check out the opening track from the album, the brooding and slowing building ‘Fire Rides.’
Oh and if you missed it during the week she also shared her cover of The Spice Girls “classic" ‘Say You’ll Be There.’
Finally don’t forget the MØ’s Dublin headlining debut in The Acadmey has been put back to 3rd May.
St. Vincent - Huey Newton (audio)
So there are only 6 days to before St. Vincent returns to Dublin to play the Olympia. I tend to prepare for gigs like exams by cramming in as many listens to the relevant back-catalogue as possible. The only problem being is that the new self-titled St. Vincent album isn’t due until 24th February (might be released in Ireland on 21st - you can never be sure). However a good few of the 11 tracks on the album have be previewed or performed live . So I though I would gather them all together in this post for you to enjoy along with amazing track ‘Huey Newton’ I managed to find. The album track-listing is below along with 6 videos from the Amex Unstaged Fashion Show last week.
Birth in Reverse
I Prefer Your Love
Bring Me Your Loves
Every Tear Disappears
Severed Crossed Fingers
Cheetahs - Kenworth (Video from the album Cheetahs)
Yesterday didn’t bring a whole lot of new releases so I am using the time to catch up on some of those I missed out from last week. One of the standouts from that pile is the self-titled debut album from UK based four-piece Cheetahs released via the ever reliable Wichata Recordings. Although based in London the band are made of an a Brit, a Canadian, an American and a German. The sound is very much guitar-driven, taking influences from the great late-80s / early 90s Creation bands (‘It Isn’t Anything’ Era MBV, Swervedriver etc.) mixed with a bit of American alt-rock from the same era.
Prior to the album they band had won admires with early EPs ‘Coared’ and ‘SANS’. These have been conveniently merged into an eight-track ‘Extended Plays’ compilation if you want to get a flavour of how their sound developed. As alluded to their is nothing particularly original in the guys sound but what they do, they do very well. It will certainly be dipping into ‘Cheetahs’ a lot over the next few months every time I need a heady guitar rush.
Victrola - Maritime Tatami (Video)
I have been listening to a good bit of electropop / synthwave / darkwave stuff over the last while and have realised that it is not always obvious whether the music originates from the early eighties and it a more modern version replete with retro synths / plugins. And does it really matter is the music is good anyway. Case in point is a new 12” from Victrola on Dark Entries Records. Eventhough it is a “current release” the songs and band actually dates from 1983.
At the time of recording Victorla were a duo of Antonio “Eze” Cuscinà and Carlo Smeriglio based in Florence, Italy. The two tracks on the 12” were recorded with ing an array of classic Roland synthesizers (TR 606, TR 303 Bassline, Juno 6) plus a Korg Polysix and Fender Stratocaster. The two epic darkwave ballads were the duos only ever releases but still stand the test of time and are deserving of the released as part of Dark Entries ‘Editions’ series.
A couple of other releases on Dark Enteries worth a mention includes Big Ben Tribe’s - Tarzan Loves the Summer Nights; another Italian electro / disco number from 1983 from the Milan based trio. It is altogether a far poppier affair than Victrola but no less essential. For good measure the B-side features an instrumental version with extended breaks and dubbed out bass lines.
Also worth checking out in the album ‘Erring and Errant' from Lè Travo, the vehicle for Belgian artist Patrick Bollen. The ten track album is actually a compilation of their debut seven song LP ‘Erring and Errant’ ,originally released in 1985 and the three tracks from their 1984 split release with Fred A.
Various Artists - 100DSR/VAR5 (audio)
As part of a series of EPs to celebrate their 100th release celebratory jigsaw Dutch label Delsin Records have released the fifth and final installment entitled VAR5. Listening to it for the first time driving to work this morning three of the tracks really stood out for me:
First of them was ‘Petrol’ by Delta Funktionen, the nom de tune of Dutch producer Niels Luinenburg who has been going quietly about his work releasing Chicago, Detriot and Italy inspired music since 2008. ‘Petrol’ is a raw, dark and edgy eight minutes plus of electronica.
Second one to note is ‘Keep Me Close’ by Bleak. Unlike his name Bleak, this Swedish producer delivers an almost beautifully restrained edgy arpeggiated number which builds and layers percussion seamlessly over its six and half minutes.
The final killer track is ‘Return to Night’ by John Beltran. According to his own label’s website, John is the owner and A&R for Dado Records and has over twenty years of experience in the music business with ten solo albums, numerous singles and remixes as well as music for television. The track is on the edge of ambient with busy hi-hats and synth movements giving it an almost dreamlike quality.
The EP has been a great introduction to Delsin for me and I am going to work back through their previous 100 releases.
I guess pretty much everyone is “prolife” when you stick to the literal meaning and don’t venture in the ironically irony-free-zone of right wing christians murdering workers at abortion clinics in the name of preserving life. But this is Ireland where we like to export of problems so we can pretent they don’t exist but I digress.
'Overheated' is the debut release from Australian duo Prolife who were formed from the ashes of death rock enthusiasts Slug Guts. It is pretty dark and minimalist techno inspired electro and I will certainly be keeping at least one eye & ear open for their debut album which is promised on Sacred Bones Records later in the year. Check out B-Side ‘Gold Leaves’ below.
Dum Dum Girls - Sight Of You (Live Video - Pale Saints cover)
It’s funny a thing synchronicity (and not just the last album by The Police). Lately I have been absorbing the Dum Dum Girls album and also finishing off the book ‘Facing The Other Way' about the history of 4AD records. So the other day I see the Dum Dum Girls tweet about cover versions.
New live cover song idea! Time to retire “Sight Of You” I think …
Now I now they have covered ‘There is A Light That Never Goes Out' and 'Trees and Flowers' on recent EPs but I hadn't realised they were fond of preforming 'Sight Of You' live. A quick Google and I found a really great performance video, which really makes me wish they would play Dublin again.
The synchronicity? I hear you ask. Well for those of you not old enough to remember ‘Sight of You’ it was an early single and a track on the debut album by Pale Saints. Pale Saints released three albums on 4AD between 1990 & 1994 with their 1990 debut ‘Comfort of Madness’ being the finest, and certainly a hidden treasure in the 4AD back-catalogue. I got into both Pale Saints & fellow 4AD band Lush around the same time, and was lucky enough to see Pale Saints support Pixies in the National Stadium in Dublin the week before I started college. It was good listening to them all again while reading ‘Facing The Other Way.’
Neneh Cherry - Out of The Black (featuring Robyn)
If we weren’t excited enough about the forthcoming Four Tet produced, RocketNumberNine accompanied, Neneh Cherry album ‘Blank Project' then how about throwing fellow Swedish popstrel and all round queen of cool Robyn into the mix? Your wish is granted courtesy of 'Out of The Black' the deliciously minimalist bass & drums driven track from 'Blank Project' that has appeared on Soundcloud today.
Guided by Voices - Difficult Outburst and Breakthrough (audio)
According to my iTunes library I have over 1,000 Guided By Voices songs in there. Now I know some are duplicates and different versions but it’s fair to say very few bands can match GVB’s productivity and quality. That is without factoring in all Robert Pollard’s solo works and side projects.
I am not sure if I or the world actually need another GVB album but we are getting one next week either way. ‘Motivational Jumpsuit’ is their fifth album since returning in 2012, and while the quality is variable, there are defintely plenty of qualiy Pollard and Tobin Sprout numnbers to keep fans happy. From what I read another album ‘Cool Planet’ may already be in the can so don’t go getting comfortable anytime soon.
Broods - Broods EP (audio)
Back in November we featured the debut track ‘Bridges' from New Zealand sibling duo Broods. Georgia & Caleb Nott have followed up the electropop promise of ‘Bridges’ with a self-titled six track EP on Polydor Records. Lorde producer Joel Little has sprinkled his magic kiwi fairly dust all over this fine collection which should be more than enough to keep us going until the debut album arrives in August.
Katy B - Play (feat. Sampha) from the album Little Red
So as a ‘featured artists’ and a vocalist with SBTRKT Sampha has been involved in some really great music. Pity then I can’t quite warm to his solo efforts (case in point current release ‘Too Much’ b/w ‘Happens’). He does however put in another fine turn on the track ‘Play’ on the new Katy B album which hits the world tomorrow. I have only had the chance to listen to it a couple of times so far but it is a fine fine dance / pop album and defintely better than some of the reviews I had red one suggest.
If you have been following Katy since ‘On A Mission’ you will already know the track ‘Aaliyah' '5AM' & the ballad 'Crying for No Reason' but not 'What Love Is Made Of' for some reason. Depending on whether you go for the standard or deluxe version there are 9 or 14 more tracks for to get you head around. Do make up you own mind.
The Haden Triplets - Slowly (Audio)
There are many many examples of great bands made up of siblings and even a couple of who contains twins (with The Breeders topping my list). However I think The Haden Triplets are reasonably unique (if that makes sense) in being comprised of triplets. For those of you not in the known The Haden Triplets are Petra, Tanya and Rachel. Family wise they are the daughters of jazz double-bassist Charlie Haden and sisters of Josh Haden of Lions Share favourites Spain. I think I first came across some of the sisters when Rachel & Petra were members of That Dog is the nineties. Together and as individuals they have performed with or at various times been members of many bands including The Rentals, The Decemberists, Weezer, Beck, The Silversun Pickups, Sea Wolf etc. etc. Tanya is even married to Jack Black of Hollywood, California.
Anyway the reason I am writing about the Hadens is that they have just released their debut album on Third Man Records (yeah Jack White and all that). ‘The Haden Triplets’ has been produced by Ry Cooder and features the ladies interpretations of songs by the likes of the Carter Family, Bill Monroe, the Stanley Brothers, Webb Pierce, Kitty Wells etc. The delivery is very much in the folky / country style of the originals with The Triplets version walking the line between tribute and pastiche. Ultimately the brilliant blood harmonies and the masterful production breath new life into these songs and more than justifies the admission.
Although having been involved in a lot of other projects since ‘Among Th Leave’ the proper Sun Kil Moon follow up album ‘Benji’ is only just released next week. The album is named after the 1974 film about a stray dog that saves two kidnapped children, which gets name checked in one of the songs. Sticking with the canine theme one of the stand-out tracks (based on my first listen) is a track called ‘Dogs’ which details in pretty earnest terms his first sexual experiences / relationships. The ‘Dogs' of the title refers to the Pink Floyd song from the album ‘Animals' which was playing when his first love Patricia put her hands down his pants for the first time.
Now I never much cared for Pink Floyd but there is quite a bit about the song, and the list of past lovers, that reminds me of one of my favourite songs by The Waterboys ‘A Bang on The Ear.' The startling frank, forthright and personal lyrics of 'Dogs' are repeated throughout the album and deal heavily on his relationships with family and friends. Tragedy is never far away but then neither is hope. I was particularly taken by the few references to his rekindled friendship with Ivo Watts Russell who first signed him to 4AD. I am not sure ‘Benji’ is for everyone but I can’t recommend it enough.
The EP feastures 5 tracks which you can check out in tantalising snippets below. The EP is available on Vinyl now but won’t be released digitally until the 10th February. As I find the preview a bit infuriating I am going to keep listening to the wonderful ‘Chilly’ until then, with it’s dizzying percussion, probing synths and touches of clarinet.
Samaris - Hafið (live performance Video via The Line of Best Fit)
As it is nearly been a week since we featured some new Icelandic music I though we’d better share the news that the excellent trio Samaris are to release their debut album proper ‘Silkidrangar’ via One Little Indian on 6th May. To preview this they performed the new track ‘Hafið’ for The Line of Best Fit.
In case you haven’t been paying attention up to now: Samaris are comprise of singer Jófríður Ákadóttir, who is also one half of the twins that make up Pascal Pinon; Þórður Kári Steinþórsson who does the computers & beats and clarinetist Áslaug Rún Magnúsdótti. Their sound is a subtle but engrossing mixture of the organic and the electronic, with Jófríður’s voice holding it all together. Last year they released a self-titled album which was actually a compilation of their heir ‘Hljóma Þú’ and ‘Stofnar falla’ EPs with a few remixes thrown in for good measure. They were down to play Electric PIcnic last year but as I didn’t go I can’t confirm if that actually happened. Hopefully they will return to our shores this year for an intimate indoor performance.