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Indie Rock / Alternative Rock

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The Most Serene Republic
And the Ever Expanding Universe

This is a very talented band and I imagine they will be around for awhile. Like most indie-rock bands from Canada, they play around with a lot of different music styles, tempos and instruments. The one thing that is consistent is their playfulness. Playful, but not in a "hey let's see if I can figure this violin out!", don't get me wrong, these guy...view item »

Future of The Left
Travels With Myself And Another

Future of the Left totally sound like an American rock band. I guess thats no bad thing if you are American but it always sounds a little strange when the band are from Shoreditch or wherever. Anyway, Future of the Left are an evolution of the much touted McClusky. Much like the story with Kyuss, Future of the Left have taken the heaviness of thier...view item »

The Willowz
Talkin Circles

I'm a bit surprised that young punky types from California, The Willowz weren't more popular. Their short, melodic pop-punk blasts fit right in with the likes of The White Stripes or The Strokes. Their first releases were in the early 2000s, right on cue, they just weren't...view item »

The Loungs
Armageddon Outta Here

Onto THE LOUNGS have a 7" out on Akoustik Anarkhy called Armageddon Outta Here. This is their 2nd single I believe. I'm not sure how to pronounce the name and when I tell folks their name they say who? And I end up saying it's like The lungs but with a random 'O' placed in. I've written 2 lines and already the song has finished. This sounds a ...view item »

Twisted Wheel
We Are Us

Saw TW support The View in Sheffield and love them.I can't wait for the album to come out -just hope it include's Oh what have you done.They keep bringing out more and more good tracks and i think there gonna be massive .Anne ...view item »

Lights
Rites

First up something by someone called Lights. Its a CD called Rites and if it were a few years ago in the glory days when I could say what I like I would say it was shite(s). But now Obama is in and theres a new positivity in the world I have to be nice and find some things to recommend it. Ok then its on Drag City and in its better moments has the ...view item »

Let's Wrestle
In The Court Of The Wrestling Let’s

I need a drink... Where's my beaker. I spend half my working day looking for my beaker. It's like the fucking Bermuda triangle I swear. Drinking vessels just seem to vanish into thin air, never to return. As I seek the vessel that will contain my forthcoming H2O liquid refreshment we play the Let's Wrestle 'In The Court Of The Wrestling Let's'...view item »

Dinosaur Jr.
Farm

I can't believe how many Dinosaur Jr and Sonic Youth records we're selling at the moment. It's well 1988 again!! Could be something to do with the fact there's so much shit about that folks get all excited about things they feel comfortable with. I did slam on the new Dinosaur Jr album (Farm) earlier today and really enjoyed the majority of it. Not...view item »

Fists
Cockatoo/ Skit

I reckon Fists might have won the Sleeve of The Week award with their 'Cockatoo' 7". It's so good I genuinely don't know where to start so I'll move right along to the music - it's keyboard heavy indie pop, which I'm always happy to hear a bit of every now and again if I'm honest. Coincidentally enough I'm reminded of a far gentler take on tha...view item »

The Lemonheads
Varshons

Starting as a silly and irreverent punk band before twisting and turning themselves into something more alt rock, The Lemonheads are continuing their legacy in the best way possible: getting other people to do it for them. 'Varshons', as well as having a title that's really fun to say, offers eleven covers from a variety of punks and crooners a ...view item »

Still Flyin
Never Gonna Touch The Ground

Talking of Antenna Farm and Jason Quevers...here's the new Still Flyin' album on Antenna Farm produced by none other than Jason Quevers. Lucky me. Still Flyin's new album starts with a little reggae-pop jam which doesn't bode well does it? For you maybe? For me...no. As the album picks up momentum we're treated to a whole host of light-as-a...view item »

Black Lips
We Did Not Know The Forest Spirit Made The...

The second helping from this Atlanta quartet follows a similar path charted by their debut: guitar-heavy garage punk, ala the revivalist sounds of the Salvation Army, Chesterfield Kings and early Pandoras. Vocalist Cole Alexander spits out lyrics like an early Mick...view item »

Spare Snare
I Love You, I Hate You

I'm gonna give this Spare Snare 'I Love You, I Hate You' CD a go. It's a self released limited screen printed digipak job. They've had seven previous albums and quite a few singles out over the years but I must admit I'm not really all that familiar with these Dundee guys which puts me in good stead to listen to this with open ears. The songs are w...view item »

Doves
Kingdom Of Rust

It's Friday afternoon and we've just had fish and chips. Not prime reviewing conditions but 'Kingdom of Rust', Doves' comeback single has just come in so we'll throw it out on the porch and see if the cat licks it up. Context: I liked the first Doves album a lot, the second one a reasonable amount and didn't even bother with the third one.. Maybe t...view item »

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
Your Funeral... My Trial

Nick Cave and his Bad Seeds released their fourth record, the melancholy and grieving 'Your Funeral... My Trial' in 1986. Its traditional rock ethic only contributed to its woeful abandon: the piano and organ is dominant, creating a pantomimic sound, while Cave is in fine form, invoking Gothic and unsettling arrangements, such as the spectral gu...view item »

Bright Black Morning Light
Motion To Rejoin

Brightblack Morning Light now. Not over familiar with these Matador dwelling buggers but i'm fondling the case for their new album 'Motion to Rejoin' trying to come up with summat informative and witty. Once again, virtually reviewing them "blind" as we hardly get any of the promo releases for these bloody things. You try reviewing an alb...view item »

Brakes (British Sea Power)
Touchdown

'Brakes' are some kind of super group made up of members of other contemporary british bands doing the rounds at the moment, so we've got members of British Sea Power, Electric Soft Parade, Restlesslist, The Pipettes and Tenderfoot all collaborating to make bold, spaced out indie rock for Fat Cat records. Come to think of it this may be a space t...view item »

Condo Fucks
Fuckbook

I appreciate Yo La Tengo taking time out to have a little fun, but I can't see myself listening to this more than a couple of times. This is basically just them running through eleven cover songs in a single take with no overdubs or anything. Decent concept, but the novelty gets old pretty fast for me. Plus, they already did this sort of thing w...view item »

Pontiak
Maker

Although they recorded their third album for Thrill Jockey in their own 12x12’ studio in Virginia, the three brothers that makes up Pontiak avoids creating excessive jams from the comfort of their own home on Maker. Straightforward stoner-rock numbers makes up the first part of the album, with “Heat Pleasure” being the highligh...view item »

Bob Mould
Life And Times

This album is a big improvement over District Line - the electronics are less prominent in the mix and the addition of Jon Wurster of Superchunk behind the kit has added to the sound. Bob seems re-energised by the simplicity of the songs and the production has been stripped down to fewer elements when held up aga...view item »

Teenage Fanclub
Deep Fried Fanclub

"Deep Fried Fanclub" is an odds and sods compilation from Teenage Fanclub's early days. The standout moment here is the non-album single "God Knows It's True" which is great, catchy indie-rock. There are also covers that highlight the band's influences: The Beatles "Ballad Of John And Yoko", Alex Chilton's "Free...view item »

Black Lips
200 Million Thousand

In their attempt to recover sounds of old, the Black Lips have brought back something that should have stayed in the sixties: the front loaded album. It has been my unfortunate observation that too many sixties rock and rollers stuffed all the goods on side A in what I assume is the belief that when it comes time to flip the record the listener ...view item »

The Decemberists
The Hazards Of Love

The Hazards of Love is the most electric album by The Decemberists, but it makes sense because the tracks ebb and flow with the telling of the tale from calm tracks telling of love to loud, calamitous tracks of turmoil and peril. Just under a full hour long, but not one gap between tracks. They all flow smoothly into one another. And this makes ...view item »

Cubs
Stonewater EP

Moving onto Cubs on Rusted Rail. It's a (rather) cute 3" CD called The Stonewater EP and it's got a whopping 8 tracks on it. I can't even work out how much tracks per inch that is as the numbers aren't even. It's a lot though. Probably at least 10 (ish). Cubs contains folks from Phantom Dog Beneath The Moon, Mirakil Whip, Agitated Radio Pilot ...view item »

Q And Not U
Different Damage

Also worth a hearty mention this week is the newie from Washington's Q and not U, an album on Dischord called 'Different Damage' which is a proper grower. Like a stripped down and funky party version of Fugazi (obvious mention-sorry!) they play wiry disco punk with intelligent lyrics which should...view item »

Underground Railroad
Pick The Ghost...EP

Have we reviewed Underground Railroad before? Who are they? There's a 5 tracker CD in my sweaty paws and I kind of like the bombastic wall of treated guitars but think the slightly vague, raspy vocals sound like a million angsty post grunge bands, like possibly early Soulwax crossed with Annie Christian, these repeated lyrical codas and ad-libs tha...view item »

Deerhunter
Cryptograms

Digging this trippy album from DEERHUNTER on Kranky called 'Cryptograms'. It's initially mercurial space rock falling into passages of hugely engaging beatless sound, cascading walls of guitar effects layered in a very 'Loveless' style. Then it's jerky freeform no/nu wave & disjointed punk funk with muffled vocals buried under intense sonic squ...view item »

Psycho & The Birds
We've Moved

Silk Flowers
Silk Flowers

Silk Flowers are certainly vying for curious record of the week, having put 10 songs on a large vinyl record through Post Present Medium and called it after themselves. The music is quite brilliant in parts, taking in lo-fi cold wave electro ala Netherlands' Trumpett imprint, dinky mechanised kraut-pop and eyebrow raising analogue effects are only ...view item »

Filthy Pedro
Rock 'n Roll Points/ History Lover

Filthy Pedro have a 7" out called Rock N Roll Points which is chirpy old style indie which reminds me a bit of Camper Van Beethoven. That kind of thing. Not bad at all...... On Blang Records....view item »

Popup
A Time And A Place

I'm not that keen on Popup's style of music to be quite honest, so I'm at a bit of a disadvantage with A Time and A Place on Art/Goes/Pop. They've very Glaswegian, that's for sure. Definite big dollops of Franz Ferdinand's lyrical jauntiness, some of the Delgados sound and the most pronounced accent this side of Glasvegas. Quite what the press rele...view item »

Deerhunter
Fluorescent Grey

Another Kranky missive is a new ep by Deerhunter. Percussive, loosed grooved and held down keyboard loop lines, layered vocals with a quiet-loud-quiet style dynamic. Makes me feel like delving further into their back catalogue. Their list of instruments make them sound like a studio bound affair, but, forth track "Wash Off" soun...view item »

Daniel Johnston
Lost & Found

Right, can I just say, I refuse point blank to acknowledge Daniel Johnston as the unfettered genius some deluded folk make him out to be. You'd think he were Jesus judging by the level of fawning martyrdom that's been placed above his bemused head in the cult R&R hall of (in)fame(y). He's funny in a "look at that scruffy backwoo...view item »

The Brian Jonestown Massacre
Tepid Peppermint Wonderland

I've listened to this compilation many, many times now and I still love it and find new things to hear in it. I have always been a huge fan of the rock music of the mid to late 60s, particularly the bands whose influence was not immediate, like the Velvets, the Nuggets and Pebbles bands, Love, ...view item »

Pavement
Wowee Zowee- Sordid Sentinels Edition

Pavement sound different here – more grown up perhaps, despite coming only a year after the brilliant “Crooked Rain Crooked Rain”. The album opens with the beautiful/odd/brilliant “We Dance”, an acoustic ballad that falls from the speakers like snow. The twisted, off-kilter craziness r...view item »

Pavement
Westing By Musket & Sextant

Westing (By Musket and Sextant) is a compilation of early singles – pre-Slanted and Enchanted era Pavement. In the main, the songs don’t sound much like what came after but you can see that the Pavement of Slanted & Enchanted is a progression from this. It’s apparent that they’re still trying to find their sound here ...view item »

The Libertines
Up the Bracket

Looking at photo's of the Libertines you really wish they'd spruce themselves up a bit. Get some smart clothes like those nice Interpol boys. I really didn't expect to like this after all the NME hype but I like it way more than anything else they've gone on about recently. Its jaunty guitar pop...view item »

The Libertines
The Libertines

Whether you could cope with their tabloid-friendly jack the lad personas or not, there's no arguing that this bunch of London wasters created a raggle taggle sound that refreshed British guitar music. At a time when most popular 'indie bands' were as benign and manufactured as any Simon Cowell protege, the Libertines lived their...view item »

Champagne Diamond / The Brilliant Light
Split

Why, what marvelous packing on this Champagne Diamond/The Brilliant Light split CD on Kaleidoscope.  Whack the CD on and you'll be greeted with watery acoustic shimmers, interesting mountain top indie-folk in an almost Fleet Foxes style, rabble-rousing rockers like Glasvegas gone experimental and My Bloody Valentine-esque feedback droneou...view item »

Wilderness
(k)no (w) here

(k)no(w)here is vaster and more generous than the past two Wilderness albums. You will be hard pressed to find a more perfectly paced album right now. Wilderness have created a singular piece of music which may only be fully appreciated in its entirety; (k)no(w)here's haunting logic simply demands multiple encounters. It's constitution reminds m...view item »

Roses Kings Castles
Roses Kings Castles

Good all round first  Album. ...view item »

The French Quarter
We're Not French

The French Quarter are a cool new Scots act and we've got their wonderful debut 'We're Not French' EP in on CD. I don't quite know how they manage to so brilliantly blend brittle new wave with early Explosions ITS style post rock drama - track 2 is very much in that style, all marching drums & hypnotic guitar building up to a buzzing little cresc...view item »

The Donkeys
Living On The Other Side

I knew nothing of this band when I listened to this, but I've come to put it into my regular rotation. It’s especially good for singing along when I've got a little drink in me. Memorable tunes that you'll be humming later, engaging instrumental pieces, and good vocals. Burned-out, so-cal surf, alt-country, funky production. Playing this i...view item »

Party Weirdo
Chart Your Cycle

Party Weirdo... No it's not Brian it's a band who have a 7" out on Stitchy Press called 'Chart Your Cycle' in a lovely screen printed blue and pink sleeve that will please both genders and possibly people who are both genders. These lovely ladies from Dublin probably drink pints of Smirnoff Ice. I went over there on the lash once and amazed th...view item »

Ballboy
I Worked On The Ships

Ballboy are back with a new album.'I Worked On The Ships' is their 4th or 5th album... I lose track of these things. I'm amazed I can get out of bed unscathed sometimes..... though there was this hilarious incident when I ended up in hospital after ripping the skin that holds my toes to my feet and falling unconscious and needing to have a brain sc...view item »

Oxford Collapse
Bits

While portraying themselves as an indie rock band, Oxford Collapse seems to be far more rooted in post-punk. Yes, all the late-nineties influences are plentiful in Bits, but it's impossible to deny that there are also hints of Against Me! hidden sporadically. Bits isn't a brilliant album and through its course it accomplishes very little, and wh...view item »

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