Whenever I start posting with any legitimate regularity, my trusted email sources start to peak their heads over the trenches that are media email inboxes and sling some more class acts my way.
I normally don’t care for the moniker of “psychedelic rock.” Not only is it obscenely popular with young up-and-coming bands but it also seems to mean nothing. Does it refer to Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd? Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s copper-plated rhythms? Fuzz boxes and colourful album sleeves? Incomprehensible noise? Nobody knows. So, when I received an email about an upcoming psych band I was apprehensive.
Turns out I had nothing to be worried about. GRDNS (gardens, get it?) latest release “Roulette Love Gun” is a jangly indie-pop tune dialled into a fuzz box and twisted through blues rhythms. As a track it almost feels as if two bands have collaborated on stage as distorted guitar solos fabricate themselves within the layers of dreamy shoegaze. Leeds is a northern hub for rock and roll, boozy life decisions and early 20s shenanigans. GRDNS successfully soundtrack the chaotic, symbiotic between stage fantasy and intelligent pop structure to create an excellent summer starter track.
Produced by James Kenosha (Pulled Apart By Horses, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Rhodes) the single is out today and is available on all platforms.
For once, I have a legitimate reason for my absence of posting. Having recently got a new job in Central London, I have been spending the last few months adapting to the fact I am now a consummate adult and the tangled web of responsibilities that comes with. Not that I’ll let that deter me, we all have to grow up and progress at some point. I am determined to be the art-world equivalent of James Bond that I always dreamed of being.
Having said that, on some days that is easier than others. Today is certainly one of those. You could be forgiven, upon looking out your front door on this miserable Monday, that it was more likely to be mid January as opposed to the last day of April. As my girlfriend (who is currently in Florida no less) has noted previously, “I must be somewhere in London, I must be loving my life in the rain.” On days like today, I struggle with the London impulse of grabbing the day by it’s tired old lapels and instead find myself wanting to float through the Oxford Street crowds, carried via the throng with my toes barely grazing the ground. A comforting apathy that borders on enjoyable melancholy. The same feeling you get contemplating a lost friend with a cup of coffee in a window seat.
Fortunately, FAVELA‘s latest single “Call My Name” can at least lend a soundtrack to this somewhat self-indulged fantasy. The Leeds-based producer and vocalist has created a lo-fi electronic track of exquisite longing that soundtracks your own melancholic montage that occurs between your ears. Beginning with slow simple guitar lines that set the tone for a wonderfully meditative soliloquy of lives lived in unwanted isolation. With lines such as, “I confess, I confess I am a writer // With schewed ambition // But holy visions,” this track expertly provides a message to my mood when it rains on Mondays. It is a track that expertly defines what it means to be in London and really, you’d rather still be in bed, with a lover or just endlessly circling the tube ignoring the outside world. Keep an eye out for the debut LP and whet your appetite with this frankly beautiful song.
I’ve been posting a lot of the summer plinky plonky (not as derogatory as it sounds) tunes lately as the sun has made it’s bi-decade appearance over this little island so you’ll all be glad to know I’ve returned to my original grunge influence roots. Note I said grunge-influenced. This is not grunge, but it carries the shades of the Weezer records I played endlessly back in my adolescence days of chasing girls too pretty, worrying about my life ending problems of homework and hidden weekly cigarettes where I desperately tried to convince everyone I was grown up. Still a work in progress.
Black Surf, from Leeds (a horribly under-appreciated hub for live music) are set to release their debut EP and to build the hype released the fuzzy best-of-the-90s single Lights Out to wet our appetite. This could be good this.