Debut single from Joykill Collective

The Joykill Collective was forged in the attic of an artistic commune in Northampton. Initially as a solo project, Leif hit upon the idea of gathering together talented friends in various mediums. The project grew to include local musicians, writers, poets and filmmakers, many of whom lived and worked in the same commune as they slowly tried to … [Read more...]

James Blake – James Blake

Runner up of the BBC's Sound of 2011 poll, up and comer James Blake is nothing less than a maelstrom of intricacy. Having cut his teeth in the South London jungle and dubstep turntable circles whilst studying popular music at Goldsmiths University, he spent most of 2010 creating his self titled debut record. No-one saw what was coming, as his … [Read more...]

The Duke Spirit – Bruiser

Formed in 2003, The Duke Spirit have lurked near unseen or heard at the edges of my own personal music knowledge, a band whose name I recognise but one that, until last week, I could have told anyone very little about. A band whose name I've seen in the music press, in other writers' reviews or in festival listings. It's often the way. Semi-pro … [Read more...]

New album from UK’s Midlake out in February

Midlake's eagerly anticipated new album, The Courage of Others (Feb. 2, Bella Union), has already begun earning rave reviews from the British press, with four star lead reviews in the new issues of Mojo and Q magazines. Two years in the making, 'The Courage of Others' is Midlake's first album since 2006's highly acclaimed breakthrough, The Trials … [Read more...]

Double Dagger – UK Tour Dates and Free mp3

Using deceptively simple instrumentation (bass, drums, vocals), Baltimore trio Double Dagger make a cacophonous wall of sound that has been occasionally described as 'very loud' or 'angry' pop. Part Fugazi, part No Age, part Shellac, their sound is aggressive, minimalist punk, that still maintains an underlying pop melodiousness. You can … [Read more...]

Speech Debelle – Speech Therapy

I’ll go ahead and spoil the whole thing for you: in the 51.7 minute entirety of Speech Therapy, nobody gets shot. There are no signature dance moves, no area code shoutouts, and you probably can’t purchase any of these songs as a ringtone. The MC only has one tattoo and it’s of a music note curled up around some dumb colloquialism. She routinely … [Read more...]

Howling Bells – Radio Wars

Howling Bells tackles classic Americana pop but wrap it in a glossier, more contemporary package.  On their previous self-titled LP, the group teamed up with Coldplay producer Ken Nelson with predictable results, a record built around melodies, hooks, and only momentary lapses into grandeur.  Radio Wars, however, brings former Nigel Godrich … [Read more...]

Grizzly Bear Announce November UK Tour

Sun 1 Ireland, Dublin, Vicar Street +353 818 719300 for ROI, +44 870 243 445 for Northern Ireland /+353 1 456 9569 International Mon 2 UK, Glasgow,,0844 847 2487 Wed 4 UK, Manchester, 424 4444) Thu 5 UK, Leeds, Leeds Metropolitan … [Read more...]

Bearsuit – OH:IO

Bearsuit's songs are high-energy, spastic smash-ups where all the stop signs have been removed.  Male and female vocals easily morph from airy sweetness to raucous shouts to multi-tiered choir harmonies, while instruments run the gamut from guitars to keyboards to horns to flutes to zippy, zapping arcade game noises.  This sextet from Norwich, … [Read more...]

Short Takes on Four EPs

Superfortress - Candy Apple II EP self-released Superfortress reminds me of various electro-pop and rock outfits such as David Bowie or Human League. The New York based group, led by Japanese musician Nao, could easily have fit on the shelves with any of the 1980's best synth pop-rock cassettes (and early CDs). Songs like "Missing People" and … [Read more...]