Virginia Wing / Xam Duo – Tomorrow’s Gift

With December’s record label schedules bloated by boxsets, reissues and novelty artefacts, it’s a relief to still find late-in-the-year releases appearing with something fresh.  Enter then, this charmed collaborative affair from London’s Virginia Wing and Yorkshire’s Xam Duo.  With already burgeoning kudos building around the two outfits in recent … [Read more...]

Moon Diagrams – Lifetime Of Love

Whilst it was logical enough that Deerhunter’s two singing-guitarists Bradford Cox and Lockett Pundt felt the need to divert some of their excess energies into solo projects, with Atlas Sound and Lotus Plaza respectively, it was perhaps more improbable that co-founding drummer Moses John Archuleta could justify a side-venture too.  Yet here is his … [Read more...]

Spectres – Condition

Although it has been nearly two years since Spectres delivered their debut Dying LP, the Bristol-based foursome have been far from idle.  Releasing a handful of non-album singles and the Dead remix collection, filming a series of increasingly provocative yet clever videos, touring as much as day-jobs will allow and courting controversy in plenty of … [Read more...]

An Abbreviated Albums A-Z of 2016: From Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy to XAM Duo.

Wherever you’ve been on the geopolitical planet of 2016, there is no doubting that it’s been a turbulent and testing year, which some people would rather forget.  Hence, looking back upon the best albums of the past twelve months feels almost too trivial.  Yet, great culture is nearly always there to remind us what can still make life so enriching … [Read more...]

The Assistant / Ina Bauer Trio / XAM Duo / The Hardy Tree

It’s funny and intriguing how synth-led musical constructions have come almost full circle in terms of credibility and creativity.  Having been both a vehicle for exploratory ambition as well as DIY minimalism from the late-‘60s to early-‘80s, only to be abused and maligned from the over-polished mid-‘80s to the Pro-Tooled ‘00s, things have come … [Read more...]

Lorelle Meets The Obsolete – Balance / The Early Years – II

Forever upholding the congregational faith for the latterly vindicated and reinvigorated sounds of vintage shoegaze, krautrock and noise-rock during its existence to date, London’s Sonic Cathedral label has overcome plenty of ups and downs (notably a devastating distributor warehouse fire and pressing-plant congestion battles) to keep its leading … [Read more...]

Yeti Lane – L’Aurore

Whilst Sonic Cathedral’s operations have been dominated by the young and hungry output of Spectres and The Vacant Lots lately, the label hasn’t forgotten the artists that fuelled earlier release schedules. Hence, when French duo Yeti Lane completed a long-awaited follow-up to 2012’s The Echo Show, Sonic Cathedral was fully-primed to deliver the … [Read more...]

Spectres – Dead

Having already been trailed with a 2-track 12” in the autumn, now we finally get to hear the full fruits of Spectres inviting forefathers, fans and fellow-travellers to decapitate and drag last year’s debut Dying album into the ghoulish afterlife that is Dead. It almost goes without saying that as remix albums go this is far from being a … [Read more...]

Spectres – “Spectre” b/w “Bondage” 007″

Bristol’s Spectres certainly never shy away from upending music industry conventions and clichés whilst simultaneously upholding the more enduring yardsticks of their idols.  Whether it be commissioning gory promo videos, reviving the possibilities instead of the pointlessness of remix projects (for a recent 12” and an upcoming full-length … [Read more...]

Artists On Albums: AOA#45 (Spectres’ Joe Hatt and Adrian Dutt on Goo)

Spectres' Joe Hatt and Adrian Dutt on… Sonic Youth’s Goo (Geffen, 1990) Both: For a band who were so heavily rooted in the no wave/experimental scene, they managed to smash their way into a mainstream where they didn't belong. The fact that Sonic Youth were able to bring so many influential bands along with them - Swans, Dinosaur Jr, … [Read more...]