The Chills – Kaleidoscope World (reissue) / Martin Phillipps – Live At The Moth Club

The Chills’ fraught existence is mired in labyrinthine label legalities and personal tragedies, frequently obscuring access to an often flawed but very often loveable body of work.  Slowly and laterally though, the band’s sprawling songbook is being reopened for long-suffering followers and those converted off the back of last year’s long-gestated … [Read more...]

Scott & Charlene’s Wedding – Delivered EP

Although forthcoming third LP Mid Thirties Single Scene might change things, Craig Dermody’s still offputtingly-named outfit has yet to properly excel as an albums-centric enterprise. However, Scott & Charlene’s Wedding have commendably dispensed a series of more durable short-form releases into the currently fertile Australia’s DIY music world … [Read more...]

Death And Vanilla – reissues

With last year’s well-promoted To Where The Wild Things Are LP and California Owl EP having drawn Malmö’s Death And Vanilla out of the shadows, it makes fan-friendly archival sense for Fire Records to also bring the bulk of the group’s earlier catalogue back into print under the same new roof - after previous limited-edition outings on Hands In The … [Read more...]

Virginia Wing – Rhonda EP

Although Virginia Wing’s slightly erratic release patterns might have thrown a few people off the scent over the last three or more years, it has at least allowed the trio to continue making significant artistic leaps forwards and sideways between releases.  Having proved themselves as serious-minded contenders with the kaleidoscopic art-pop of … [Read more...]

Artists On Albums: AOA#47 (Noveller’s Sarah Lipstate on The Ascension)

Noveller’s Sarah Lipstate on… Glenn Branca’s The Ascension (99 Records, 1981) I discovered Glenn Branca when I was 19, the same year that I discovered guitar effects pedals.  Sonic Youth and no wave bands such as Teenage Jesus And The Jerks and The Contortions got me through my senior year of high school and influenced my earliest years of … [Read more...]

Earth Recordings: Bert Jansch, Judy Dyble & Tariverdiev

Since tentative beginnings at the start of 2014 with a bare-but-warm vinyl reissue of Jackson C. Frank’s eponymous 1965 LP, the London-based Earth Recordings has fast become a go-to archival enterprise with its increasingly close-to-essential spread of releases. Co-founded by Fire Records’ latter-day main-man James Nicholls, designer Alex Hornsby … [Read more...]

Wreckless Eric – amERICa

Having redemptively resurrected the bulk of Eric Goulden’s post-Stiff Records canon - through reissues of his two LPs with The Len Bright Combo and three under his Wreckless nom de plume - Fire Records now releases the first new Wreckless Eric full-length in a decade or so.  As the typographically-punning title suggests, amERICa is a … [Read more...]

The Chills – Silver Bullets

Scrutinising the sleeve-notes of the first studio album from The Chills since 1996’s Sunburnt reveals a lengthy feature-film-like list of locations, players and supporting cast members in the low-key yet epic story of the New Zealand legends’ long-trailed official return.  Detailing multiple recording sessions going back to 2013 in studios spread … [Read more...]

Blank Realm – Illegals In Heaven

The evolution of Brisbane’s Blank Realm from embryonic psyche-rockers to power-pop chameleons over the last five years has been one of most gratifying artistic success stories of the revived Australian independent music scene.  Building on the cocoon-shedding diversity of the lo-fi Deja What? (2010), the frenetic full-flight precision of Go Easy … [Read more...]

The Jean-Paul Sartre Experience – I Like Rain: The Story Of The Jean-Paul Sartre Experience

Like their better-known more senior labelmates and fellow compatriots, The Chills, The Jean-Paul Sartre Experience were intractably linked to the fluctuating fortunes of New Zealand’s Flying Nun Records.  Yet unlike Martin Phillipps’ recently self-renewed power-pop outfit, The JPSE were a far artier and more awkward proposition that perhaps … [Read more...]