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The Untied Knot
Sketches For a Lost Summer

‘Sketches For The Lost Summer’ looks appealing. Beautiful cover art, recycled packaging and swish foam padded CD tray, lovely stuff. Music is pretty sweet too. The Untied Knot a.k.a Nigel Bryant (from 90’s indie rockers The Fables amongst others) makes the old acoustic six-string sing like a bird chorus on a summer’s morning. ‘An act of k...view item »

The Tumbledryer Babies
Wheat

I don't know quite what I was expecting from this one (big picture of a cow's face on the cover, production handled by Paul Leary who's done the duty for his own Butthole Surfers, Meat Puppets, Daniel Johnston etc.) but I wasn't expecting the first tune to sound like it could've been on the first Pipettes LP, albeit with an amusingly (and hopefu...view item »

Tiago Sousa
Walden Pond's Monk

This CD for Portuguese piano maestro Tiago Sousa is a suite based upon the work of Henry David Thoreau (me neither but an early day environmentalist and abolitionist according to my...ahem... sources). Its a bleak work of deathly piano tinklings like a severly depressed Richard Clayderman considering imminent suicide. Accompanied at times by...view item »

The State Of Samuel
Mutiny On Mercury

Another one who sounds like he's singing with a clothes peg on his nose is The State of Samuel. Although he's from Sweden, this could easily be on the old Elephant 6 roster. Its lo-fi twee fun pop just like Apples In Stereo or The Minders. Some of the songs here are just fantastic ...view item »

The Stands
All Years Leaving

The Stands emerge with their debut CD/LP which somehow managed to irritate me after about 20 seconds when we listened to it the other day. Its tuneful sunny country rock that takes all its influences from The Byrds and Bob Dylan. The single 'The River Runs Over Me' is by far the best thing her...view item »

Spaces Between
Untitled

Mike Orr is from Bristol and calls himself Spaces Between. He refers to pieces as 'songs', which I always like. His songs are made with guitars and computers, but mainly guitars I should think. The computers are used to provide rhythms rather than a variety of processes, although not in every track. Guitars are layered together, and either p...view item »

Snow Patrol
Take Back The City

Snow Patrol have confused us all by recruiting an American singer who sounds a bit like Dave Grohl and rocking out a revolutionary anthem called 'Take Back the City'. If this won't get all of us apathetic losers off out of our armchairs and out protesting in the streets nothing will.. Unfortunately for these jokers we'll probably be holding signs s...view item »

The Singing Skies
Routine & War

With Status Quo giving exclusivity to Tesco for their new album it's a tough time for the sort of record shops that attempt to stock things that aren't the Girls Aloud comeback tour CD and make up bag box set. The Singing Skies are not Status Quo and the ...view item »

Say
Multiverse

Multiverse could have been one of those well dodgy band names but luckily it's merely the title of an album by Say. Their sleeve is a bit cosmo-cheese but their hugely addictive & playful modern psychedelic pop is anything but. Recorded lavishly to bring out the best in their chiming guitars & effortless layered harmonies, they owe a seriou...view item »

The Rumble Strips
Hate Me You Do

Chirpy sub Dexy's toss like The Rumble Strips does nowt for me. I don't wanna hear a cross between Boomtown Rats & Mystery Jets any more than I want to stab myself up. Or I may just go & stab up Razorlight for making this bobbins popular. I'm too old & off for a lie down & a cup of horlic...view item »

Rice Corpse
Mrs Rice

This Mrs Rice CD by Rice Corpse sounds like a load of fun. Apparently the bands name is "named after the Chinese character for shit, which itself is the combination of the two characters for corpse and rice" which is probably the funniest thing I've heard since the age old classic KFC joke. Anyway this is improvised piano, drums and glass...view item »

Retro Crooks
Conrad Dangerfield/ Judy Knows

Retro Crooks self release their debut single (I think). It's a CD single only release which is probably quite a rare thing in this day and age. Most singles are a 7" and download, 12" wax or a huge multi formatting bonanza. Well the Retro Crooks have half inched bits of the Arctic Monkeys and Libertines along with some twiddly Foals esque...view item »

Rec.tangle
Heavy Maple

Heavy Maple is the debut album from Rec.tangle A.K.A Brighton-based, France-born Adrien Rodes. Formally known as Topo Gigio, Adrian Rodes has been taking it steady since signing to Melodic ten years ago but it looks like the wait has been worth it. I'm really taken by first track 'Square One'. Brett reckon's it sounds like the theme to 'The Hitchik...view item »

Ra Ra Riot
The Orchard

Following up an album as good as The Rhumb Line is a difficult task. Ra Ra Riot had a major element working against them: the untimely passing of John Pike, their original drummer and a great lyricist (who penned various songs for The Rhumb Line). They also faced the possibility of a dreaded sophomore slump. Now, I've read some early critiques o...view item »

The Rain Band
Knee Deep & Down

The Rain Band (who gave me this?). Its a new single. Its dark swirling heavy overcoated guitar rock somewhere between Mansun, The Chameleons and something altogether more scary like the Sisters of Mercy. Knee Deep & Down is released on 7", 12" and CD ...view item »

Punks On Mars
Bad Expectations

Punks On Mars are actually a garage pop crew from Not Mars, and are fans of the Japandroids manifesto: thrilling nights playing easy chords and sick riffs. Bad Expectations is quick power pop for those who like the sound of loose guitars and thrown off ideas. The name is a good signi...view item »

Protestant Work Ethic
The Jar And Shock

Protestant Work Ethic, as well as having a great name, has a rather pleasing sound: folk songs nestled amidst detailed arrangements. Not quite as dour as you might expect Protestant folk music to be, but that may be for the best, depending on how bleak you like your folk. The Jar And The Shock is released by Valeot....view item »

The Presets
Pacifica

After big success with the previous two albums, The Preset disappeared to go away and put the next big album together: Pacifica. I had expectations for this album but it never really gets going to the climatic heights of or their past work. I hear the same sounds in different configurations and its more of a chunky 80s house album than the nerve...view item »

Poor Moon
Poor Moon

This is a beautiful album, and while there will be comparisons to Fleet Foxes, Christian Wargo and Casey Wescott have really tried to make this something else with the help of brothers Ian and Peter Murray. The overall aesthetic has a similar vibe to Fleet Foxes but doesn't have quite the same intensity or energ...view item »

Peter Wolf Crier
Inter-Be

Peter Wolf Crier are a Minneapolis-based songwriting team composed of Peter Pisano (Wars Of 1812) and Brian Moen (Laarks and Amateur Love). They play a stripped down version of classic Americana style rock in the vein of other North Midwest groups like Bon Iver and Volcano Choir. Pisano's voice has a distinct clarity to it that is instantly appe...view item »

Patterns
Waking Lines

“A modern shoegaze-pop record” screams the press release and yes I suppose it has slew of guitar effects piled on top of the rock dynamics but really this is nothing of the sort. Its big, bold shiny pop thats nods fairly far in the direction of Jonsi from Sigur Ros s...view item »

Panico
Kick

I haven't listened yet the album but I hope is so great as the album art. I really loved the album art made by Rodrigo Pereda....view item »

Original Hamster
Original Hamster Presents Trendsetter & The Follow

Trendsetter & The Followers by ORIGINAL HAMSTER (which is the best name for a band ever....). This is kind of funky electronic music along the lines of Burnt Friedman and the more funky end of Scape Music (albeit more quirky and a bit more crazed at times). Vocoder vocals over slight dubby beats with some odd...view item »

Peter Moren
The Last Tycoon

What I do know about Peter Moren is he's partly responsible for Young Folks, the classic Swindie disco hit. I don't know why he's chosen to follow such boombastic brilliance with a solo album that sounds like Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan & John Lennon headbutting each other in the face. But it's really well put together & the songs are of good ...view item »

Misophone
Another Lost Night

The artwork that adorns Bristol / Carlisle duo Misophone’s umpteenth home-recorded offering is really lovely. Beautiful muted browns and reds whisper tales of years gone by from a tasteful gatefold matt sleeve… aaaah. It’s the sort of sexy, quality-oozing packaging you want to fondle lingeringly as you slip...view item »

Magnet
The Tourniquet

Magnet's boyish charm comes through with a decided strength as many of the songs, although still questioning life; start to find a new direction and purpose within the stage of intimacy and comfort. I listen to Magnet because I like being able to listen to dreamy romantic contemplations savouring each inflection of his voice in his magical elect...view item »

Line
Hearts

Line immediately sound a lot like The Faint but with a tinge more electro and a tad less bombastic indie rock. The record's ten seconds in and the review's pretty much done so now I've just got to wait it out a bit and see if it changes. I reckon that gives me a window of about fifteen minutes where I can get away with looking at horrendously offen...view item »

Little Red
Listen To

Sounds like piss poor demo off cuts from The Coral. Which should not be taken as an indication that I think The Coral are any good either. Which rather goes to show that this is worth nought of your hard earned IMHO ...view item »

Kit
Broken Voyage

KIT are a band featuring members of XBXRX, Hawnay Troof, Snowsuit*, Warbler, Lil Pocketknife, Boxleitner and have their debut long player Broken Voyage' out on the ever fun Upset The Rhythm. It's a tremendous blend of upbeat noise thrashings with a pop sensibility Reminding me of Deerhoof at times. Short and sweet little songs. Just like this revie...view item »

Klaxons
Surfing The Void

The newie from Klaxons has all the hallmarks of a great record..well, its got a Cat in a space suit on the front cover. Which gets my vote any day of the week, sir. The songs have oblique references to space and time travel. Which also gets the nod from me sir. It has a dry sound that do sent pulverize your ear holes, it sort of rubs them fondly...view item »

Jeremy Jay
A Place Where We Could Go

This twee pop singer/songwriter employs a more-than-half-spoken style that is supported by a lo-fi guitar-piano-drums combination. It gives a narrative feel to the songs. A Place Where We Could Go is Jay's first full length album. His melodies hearken back to an earlier 1960s rock era, while his lyrics are reflective of the challenges of li...view item »

David Evans
Internal Temporal Order

A new name to add to the pile of pale and interesting electronic producers taking initial cues from Kraftwerk and their like (more on them later). Evans describes this album as an attempt to play electronic music on acoustic instruments and on opener '1am to 2am' he gets it spot on with a lovely tune that builds u...view item »

The Interiors
Delays Are Dangerous

The Interiors are from Sheffield, starring on the Phantom Power label, purveyors of meaty indie pop tunes with a chunky, tuneful soul. They've filled their debut album, Delays Are Dangerous, with fuzzy guitars, pummeled bass, stomping drums and old time tunes with an effervescent bounce. The male singer has one of funny hyper voices like the chap f...view item »

Hard Fi
Living For The Weekend

When I was a wee nipper of 16 or so  - I did work experience at a bank. One day I heard an old feller that worked there say 'I just live for t'weekends now'. I thought it was the saddest and most depressing thing I'd ever heard. What about the other 5 days!! Well that's what happens I guess once reality hits and you start getting ground do...view item »

Ernest Gonzales
Been Meaning To Tell You

Don't know much about Ernest Gonzales but it would appear that the Art Union/Maomoo label are big fans with this LP coinciding with a book release/multi artist collaborative effort. You can read more about the related shenanigans in the press release or follow this link. For now, i'll stick to banter about the album in hand. 'Been Meaning to Tell Y...view item »

Ghost Outfit
I Want You To Destroy Me

It’s hard to believe that Manchester’s Ghost Outfit are a two piece, this debut for the Sways label has the big sound of a full band with a crunch of guitar and thundering drums. ‘I Want You To Destroy Me’ seems like the first proper rock album I’ve revi...view item »

Liam Frost
The City Is At Standstill

LIAM FROST  is a nugget. I was so upset by his last single I almost exploded with rage. I'm not a violent person but the man Frost makes me want to do extremely vicious things to kittens. Apparently some copies of his forthcoming album are signed. Pot luck so I'm told.... If we happen to get any signed copies I'll be sending...view item »

Fort King
Naked Shadows

Rootsy, folky west coast Americana sounds now from a fellow called Ryan Fuller a.k.a. Fort King. Naked Shadows is a really good album. Good music, good lyrics. Really good. I find stuff like this hard to review as songs always need a bit of time to sink in for me but I'm really confident that this is really good. Like his voice. Really nice arrange...view item »

The Foxes
Lover, Killer

In essence, The Foxes' ability to produce honest, raw and yet unique energised rock and roll seems to be nothing short of effortless in this track. The Kinks-esque opening firmly roots 'Lover Killer' in the realms of a guitar-led sound followed by profound urbanised lyrics. The greatest compliment one can pay to this scintilating three minutes i...view item »

Flying Matchstick Men
All Yr Secrets

So from such sublime delights to the Flying Matchstick Men single on One Records which is so contrived it made me wish I too was constructed of wood as it would be easier to set fire to myself and rid myself from having to review this. Think of a sub-Kaisers band trying to be so painfully trendy it hurts. Only 500 on 7" tha...view item »

Firewire
Tribute To Manzini

An interesting thing on City Centre Offices by Firewire called A Tribute To The Manzini. This is Carl Crack (Atari Teenage Riot/ DHR) and some other dude called Frederic Slater. It was put on Hiatus after Carl died in 2001 and it's been put together now with what was recorded at the tim...view item »

Figurant
A Home In the Trees

This is a lovely release from Greek melancholic Figurant on Somehow Ecstatic. Limited to 200 copies, each with unique artwork. It's dreamy slow-core that reminds me very much of bands like Hood and Empress. All very minimal and pastoral, with occasional sparse electronic beats, and some wind instruments i'm loath to commit to naming, but i r...view item »

Fear of Music
We Are Not The Enemy

Onto Fear of Music who release their debut 7"/CDs on Fastermusic. It's called 'We Are Not The Enemy' and it's medium paced average indie type gear which is very MTV2 and it reminds me of  Cooper Temple Clause, Feeder and other such great, great bands. Am being terribly polite about this bit we think it's a bi...view item »

Electric Spoon
You/ The End Begins

Marquis Cha Cha jumping on the folk bandwagon shouts Flip as I put on the new single by ELECTRIC SPOON. Nice simple plucking guitar with gentle voice following the guitar line. It Sounds like a badly recorded Nick Drake which gives it a timeless feel and. Yeh really drifty and lovely voice...a simple pie. Like a cream scone rather then a lemon meri...view item »

Eight Legs
Searching For The Simple Life

If I could get to purchase the cd I would be estactic as I'm not really having much luck at the moment. Finding this web page has given me a glimmer of hope thank you. ...view item »

Earth The Californian Love Dream
Porn Star

Earth The Californian Love Dream. Catchy name.... Their last single sold in buckets and I've no idea why. The new single is called Porn Star and is available on 7" and CD (both formats limited). On the cover you have a slightly saucy image for the tissue brigade out there. Though pop the record on and flacidity will take over once m...view item »

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