All We Are: Stayin’ Alive with Stone

The Bee Gees on diazepam? Formed at Paul McCartney’s performing arts school, LIPA, this self-proclamation from Liverpool (via Norway/Ireland/Brazil) trio All We Are is a bit of a head scratcher if one only ever heard the barn burning single “Keep Me Alive”. Upon listening to the whole of the album, Stone (Domino Recordings), […]

Twenty fifteen and Crushed Beaks

Aine and Ben's wedding day

Here we are on the fledgling wings of yet another year, thousands of bands vying for our attention in a sea of Soundcloud links, drop dates and nervously planned record release gigs. On days like this I’m glad to be a lowly consumer rather than an actual musician. While it makes me sound lazy (and talentless), I much prefer snuggling on the sofa with a cup of coffee and listening rather than wrangling up band members’ calendars and figuring out who is available on what date at X venue in X city. What a headache. Cast solely as the role of Listener, I have none of the drama I hear and see occurring regularly among some of my musician friends (and strangers alike). I can pick and choose the little nuggets of lovely I listen to rather than say, having to sit through a long­winded Skype yarn from my drummer who has to go to his kid’s 1st grade Noah’s Ark performance instead of playing a gig that’s been planned for ages. Because, you see, Abby’s Imaginary Band is made up of oldsters, like me, with decent taste, day jobs and offspring:

“HE’S THE MALE OSTRICH. I CAN’T MISS IT.”

What a fucking pain. Right. Happy New Year. Moving on.

I must admit that while I scour the internet, shops and magazines for new music, radio has proven itself an integral part in opening my ears to tunes I otherwise would have missed. Take new-­to-­me favorites Crushed Beaks and their airwave­-friendly single ‘Overgrown’.

A few choice senders have been playing the grooves out of it, and for good reason. Hailing from SE London, Crushed Beaks have been tickling ears with several EPs since 2011. 2015, however, will play host to their full-­length debut, Scatter. Armed with a mutual love of horror flicks, Alex Morris, Matthew Poile and newest recruit Scott Bowley present smart, hook-­filled pop with just enough fuzz and grit to tempt the ears of staunch shoegazers and indiepop kids alike (hi).

Continue reading Twenty fifteen and Crushed Beaks

Tor Miller: “Midnight”

It’ll be Friday night soon. What will you be doing at midnight? I hope you the feel the same way as Tor Miller.

(PS: Miller is only 20 years old.)

Bonus:

Preorder the Headlights EP

Vök

These folks may be popular, but it’s the first I’m hearing of them, and damn am I smitten. Margret Ran Magnusdóttir, an openly gay singer, fronts the Icelandic Vök trio, and I only mention that because she’s made a point of sharing how her story, from an Icelandic perspective, has influenced her music. Regardless of what’s influenced her […]

[MP3] The Things of Youth: “Eleventeen”

When I first started listening to “indie” music, so to speak, it was the likes of The American Analog Set and Pinback. Laid-back, understated pop with a certain twang that uniquely defined to whom the music belonged. I’ve been missing that lately, but luckily for me The Things of Youth have come along […]

Monophona: “Thumb”

Monophona, you’ve impressed me. “Thumb” sticks out like a sore one in the best way possible – it’s madly unique with acoustic instrumentation, sampled backgrounds, and dark/edgy atmospherics. All in all, it adds up to an odd assortment of beautiful sounds and a track that I’m finding tricky to get out of my […]

[MP3] The North Country: “The Cross We Bear”

Sometimes it’s hard to know where you want to be. Or who you are. Are you content or are you looking for something more? Can you ever really be content? When do we get to that moment in life where we confidently say “I am fulfilled. This is me.”?  I don’t know the […]

Joseph

Today in bands that need way more recognition comes Joseph, a sister trio out of the Pacific Northwest (actually, a small town named Joseph in eastern Oregon.) I’d be happy for them coming from such a beautiful place if it meant they’d still tour on this side of the country, but from the looks of […]

Repeater

This Friday is going to the dogs. Let’s brighten it up with some new songs by LA-based Repeater, whose s/t full length album is due November 18 via A Diamond Heart Production.

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Diagrams: “Phantom Power”

Tunng has been one of my favorite bands over the last several years, and former member Sam Genders is creating equally delightful pop under a new name, Diagrams. Diagrams actually released a debut EP in 2012, but he has a new album, Chromatics, coming out on Full Time Hobby in January and just […]