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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Discoverer 117: new indie findings

A trio of pretty intimate affairs today in our discoveries' series. Slow wonders ahead!

The Catenary Wires. Tricky one I know. Does Amelia Fletcher needs any presentation? Of course not. She's one of the genuine indiepop heroines. Alongside Rob Pursey they have written some of the most unforgettable indiepop history of the past 30 years: Talulah Gosh, Heavenly, Marine Research, Tender Trap... Now they have a new project together, born after the two left London to live in the countryside, with Tender Trap disbanded. Not a lot to do except start penning songs on acoustic guitar for their own entertainment until they were invited to play at the Arnolfini Art Gallery in Bristol, at an event celebrating another myth, Sarah Records. The set mixed Heavenly tunes with some new material, with such promising results the duo has transformed the homemade songs into a mini album, “Red Red Skies”, out since June on Elefant Records. Eight back-to-basics magic songs. A moment of serene, stark, pensive and melancholic beauty, where melodies, intertwined vocals and words weight a ton. So good to have Amelia & Rob back in our lives!

Shana Cleveland & The Sandcastles. Let me introduce you Shana Cleveland, a multi-talented (musician, writer, painted, graphic designer) artist living in Seattle. Our hyperactive woman leads two bands, the garage combo La Luz and this folky-tinged affair on which she's been performing with a rotating cast of musicians tagged as The Sandcastles. Although this music project started six years ago, the bulk of 'Oh Man, Cover The Ground', her debut album, out right now on Suicide Squeeze Records, was recorded in 2011 in Shana’s basement. Breezy and heavily melodic, Shana and Co are able to summon the spirits of fingerpicking masters like John Fahey or Robbie Basho and channel them into pop casual, laid-back, gorgeous pills. The most beautiful soundtrack of the summer ahead.

Morels. And we end in Baltimore, Maryland, to meet this new dreampop/shoegaze quintet, active since early 2014 comprising current and former members of The Warlocks, Bad Liquor Pond and The Flying Eyes. After the exciting 'Raygun', first single appearing past February, now they present "Lemonseeds EP", available digitally, anticipating forthcoming debut album. Waves crashing into the rocks, icy, ethereal landscapes, instants captured into blissful noises. Sepia prints invoking moments now long gone. Slowdive meeting Real Estate. Add Morels to your "bands to follow list". They are fated to take you on an unforgettable music trip.

Friday, June 26, 2015

The Bloodbuzzed Jukebox Week 60

Last week before a new chapter of my life begins! And to celebrate (because the changes are for good) as well as gather all the needed strength (because changes, at times, are also scary) we have gathered a stunning collection of great tunes. Our next TOP TEN playlist is definetely a must-listen, with nine new findings and an awesome tune by Dianas. Do not miss it! This is also available at our Soundcloud blog page, so please join us!

Direct links to 2015 Jukebox playlists
Week 36  Week 37  Week 38   Week 39  Week 40 
Week 41  Week 42  Week 43  Week 44   Week 45
Week 46  Week 47   Week 48  Week 49    Week 50
Week 51   Week 52  Week 53  Week 54    Week 55 
Week 56   Week 57   Week 58  Week 59

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Indie Anthology 64: essential songs

Finally I'm able to go back to our anthologyA lot of things happening in my life, a new beginning, with high hopes, about to come. Strength is needed. So it's time to choose music that provides the energy, thanks to one of the best power-pop bands in history.

Song: Solar Sister
Artist: The Posies
Year: 1993

It's very easy to trace how I discovered The Posies. Probably you can easily guess too. It's all R.E.M.'s fault. Who was that guy regularly performing with my favourite band? I didn’t know about Ken Stringfellow’s main band before, but after joining the Athens’ legends live (as well as appearing on several records) The Posies’s universe quickly became familiar for me. ‘Golden Blunders’, ‘Dream All Day’, 'Flavor of the Month'... and, foremost, ‘Solar Sister’, with its irresistible combination of bursting noises and melodic bridges. American alternative rock in one of its (criminally underrated) happiest pages. On a time when grunge was quickly becoming a cliché, The Posies were penning cracking tunes after cracking tunes, witty as well as truly soulful, the spirit of Alex Chilton fuelled by distorted guitars and the voices of the leading duo Stringfellow/Auer. “And you can read, sister Carrie, read…”. If you don’t get carried by the infinite, humming chorus, there’s something wrong with you.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Best Songs of the Year far

Today, we are extremely happy to unveil our 30 favourite songs of the year so far. As we did with the best records /EPs list, the tunes are listed in alphabetic order, taking in mind two rules: they have been released during 2015, and just one song per group (a really hard decision in some cases). We encourage you to enjoy the complete playlist in our soundcloud page! And to check our 201120122013 and 2014 selections!
  1. Actual Alien - American Culture
  2. Ahora que hace bueno- Reina Republicana
  3. Back to You- Twerps
  4. Been in the wars- New Politicians
  5. Can’t You Feel - Bruising 
  6. Chateau Lobby #4- Father John Misty
  7. Continental Shelf- Viet Cong
  8. Courage- Villagers
  9. Creep Me Out- Ghost Transmission
  10. Depreston- Courtney Barnett
  11. Desencuentros- The New Raemon
  12. Fool- Nadine Shah
  13. Hold You Down - Love Signs
  14. Hollow Veins- Surf City
  15. I Wanna Be a Writer - Etti / Etta 
  16. Let You Know- The Fireworks
  17. Made my mind up- Mikal Cronin
  18. O- Desperate Journalist
  19. Running Late- Flyying Colours
  20. Scene Sick- Diet Cig
  21. Should Have Known Better- Sufjan Stevens
  22. Sleeping in the Backseat- Tigercats
  23. Surface Envy- Sleater-Kinney
  24. Stars- The Treasures of Mexico
  25. Swept Away- Star Tropics
  26. Tearing the posters down- Dick Diver
  27. The House- Le Volume Courbe
  28. The Legend of Chavo Guerrero- The Mountain Goats
  29. Umi - Pinkshinyultrablast
  30. Young Girls- PINS

Friday, June 19, 2015

The Bloodbuzzed Jukebox Week 59

We keep the music wheel turning. Here's our next TOP TEN playlist with ten exciting more songs. Friends embarking in new adventures, The Birkins and Seapony, great bands returning to form, Ducktails and Mercury Rev (let's have hope) and, as usual, our new, always promising, finds. Remember, this is also available at our Soundcloud blog page, please join us!

Direct links to 2015 Jukebox playlists
Week 36  Week 37  Week 38   Week 39  Week 40 
Week 41  Week 42  Week 43  Week 44   Week 45
Week 46  Week 47   Week 48  Week 49    Week 50
Week 51   Week 52  Week 53  Week 54    Week 55 
Week 56   Week 57   Week 58

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Best Records and EPs of the year 2015... so far

Here we are once again, half of the year is already gone. So, honouring one of the Blog's favourite traditions, and after a very tough decision, here are, in our opinion, the 25 best records and EPs of the year 2015 so far (until half June). As we did in previous years, the albums and EPs are listed in alphabetical order (the complete, final list will arrive when the year ends). Hoping you enjoy these great artists as much as we do!* Stay tuned, we are working on our favourite songs of this six months of music!

Apparitions- Ghost Transmission
Beat the Champ- The Mountain Goats
Beta- El Lado Oscuro de la Broca
Carrie & Lowell- Sufjan Stevens
Desperate Journalist- Desperate Journalist
Everything Else Matters- Pinkshinyultrablast
El Despertar- Reina Republicana
Goon- Tobias Jesso Jr.
Holding Pattern- The Treasures of Mexico
I don't want to let you down - Sharon Van Etten
I Love You, Honeybear- Father John Misty
Jekyll Island- Surf City
Love is love - Skittle Alley
MCIII- Mikal Cronin
Melbourne, Florida- Dick Diver
Murder Shoes - Murder Shoes
No Cities to Love- Sleater-Kinney
No One's Coming to for Us - Trust Fund
Oh, Rompehielos- The New Raemon
Overeasy EP - Diet Cig
Pure American Gum - American Culture
Range Anxiety- Twerps
Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I just Sit- Courtney Barnett
Switch Me On- The Fireworks
Wild EP - Young Romance

Click on the years to check our 201120122013 and 2014 selections!

* Note: Still have to properly listen The Catenary Wires's "Red Red Skies" and the forthcoming Day Ravies "Liminal Zones" which, considering what I have listened so far, seem fated to be on the list.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Discoverer 116: new indie findings

Back to our regular work mode and ready to propose you three new, exciting music finds in our discoveries' series!

The Treasures of Mexico. Here comes an unmissable one! The Dentists were a fantastic, criminally underrated and mostly forgotten indie band from Chatham, UK, active from 1984 to 1995. Coax, Fortress Madonna, The Great Lines, The Claim... Side projects and music contributions with several bands followed, proving that founder members Mark Matthews and Bob Collins were very far from done, luckily for us, from this unfair & cruel world (replace with word industry) called music. One of this new adventures has now crystallised, on which Mark has the control over the songwriting duties with the help of Bob and another usual suspect, Russ Baxter from Secret Affair. The Treasures of Mexico are here with debut album 'Holding Pattern', out just now digitally thanks to our dear friends from Shelflife. Melodic, janlgy, effervescent, upbeat, shimmery, delightful from song one to thirteen, is very hard to analyse the record with objectivity. It's the kind of music that made this humble blogger be writing this Blog. Needless to say, look for The Treasures of Mexico on our best-of-the-year lists.

Turnover. Hailing from Virginia Beach, Virginia, the band was born in 2009 with an initial demo surfacing that year, although first release, a self-titled EP, didn't arrive until 2011. Tours, a split record with Citizen and signature with label Run for Cover Records arrived in 2012, with whom they released debut album, 'Magnolia', a year later. A prolific combo, in 2014 they came out with another EP, 'Blue Dream', and a split with Ivy League, Maker and Such Gold. Finally, in this 2015 we can enjoy their sophomore LP, 'Peripheral Vision', out since May. Evolving from their pop-punk origins without losing their idiosincracy, Turnover has embraced the dreamy landscapes of Wild Nothing and the chiming guitars of our beloved Real Estate. The result is excellent: a pleasing, blissfully melancholic record, enjoyable from start to finish.

Funeral Advantage. Let's move to Boston, MA, to meet Tyler Kershaw. In 2013 he began his lo-fi bedroom pop project releasing a demo tape and split 7" with Caténine on Disposable America. But since then it has evolved into a full band with an impressive cv of gigs alongside Alvvays, Whirr or Craft Spells. This 2015 they have released the double a-side 'Not In My House / That's That' with The Native Sound and, in April, another split 7" with Former Ghosts, with debut album scheduled later in the year. Moody, reverb-drenched dreampop crafted with jangly guitars. Looking forward to Kershaw's band new tunes. Most promising.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Bloodbuzzed Jukebox Week 58

A week of important decisions and some big changes ahead, but we found some time to prepare our TOP TEN playlist. You can enjoy the last songs of blog regulars like our beloved Sharon Van Etten or the new tune from Widowspeak. And, as mandatory, several exciting new discoveries like, just naming two, Bad Bad Hats and Angelic Milk, that we are sure you're going to love! Remember, this is also available at our Soundcloud blog page, please join us!

Direct links to 2015 Jukebox playlists
Week 36  Week 37  Week 38   Week 39  Week 40 
Week 41  Week 42  Week 43  Week 44   Week 45
Week 46  Week 47   Week 48  Week 49    Week 50
Week 51   Week 52  Week 53  Week 54    Week 55 
Week 56   Week 57 

Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Bloodbuzzed Jukebox Week 57

After the Primavera Sound Festival's maelstrom we are back with our TOP TEN playlist, with the tunes we have been enjoying the most lately. Starting with one of our discoveries of the Festival, Núria Graham and continuing with another proof of Dunedin's great music, Astro Children, we have prepared a really diverse playlist. So, if you like indie-rock proposals you are in the right place, same as well if you are more a indie-pop listening type. As always, this is algo avaiblable at our Soundcloud blog page, please join us!

Direct links to 2015 Jukebox playlists
Week 36  Week 37  Week 38   Week 39  Week 40 
Week 41  Week 42  Week 43  Week 44   Week 45
Week 46  Week 47   Week 48  Week 49    Week 50
Week 51   Week 52  Week 53  Week 54    Week 55 
Week 56 

Monday, June 1, 2015

Primavera Sound 2015 in brief, days 4 & 5

And we arrive to the final chapter of our Primavera Sound chronicles, with the last day of concerts at Fòrum, plus the addition (and what an addition!) of a final gig seen yesterday at sala Barts.

The Good
Patti Smith: Not really a concert, but a celebration. The music legend was relaxed, friendly and willing to have fun with an audience eager to show their love, respect and appreciation. Even when the songs were so-so (the ones devoted to Amy Winehouse and her grandson) or when the covered tune (Lou Reed's 'Perfect Day') became a lovely piece of nonsense Patti's charisma and mythical presence did it all. And then came the brutal renditions of 'Because the Night' and 'Pissing in a River', one of the moments of the Festival for me. So when 'People Have the Power' (video below) appeared, with the audience leaving their seats to stay closer to the icon it all made sense. Patti has the power.

DIIV: I love 'Oshin', and got really frustrated when the band cancelled their participation at last year's Primavera. But the group leaded by Zachary Cole Smith came to Barcelona with a sole purpose: enlightening Pitchfork stage. Terrific performance, with new tunes sounding as exciting as the glorious dreampop gems of 'Oshin'. Wow.
Dreamy diving pop. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
Interpol: Didn't have many expectations, as their last albums are far from their best moments... but that's exactly what they gave us at Heineken stage. A gig heavy on 'Turn on the Bright Lights' with seven tunes, all the hits from 'Antics', performed with energy and passion. And when electric system of the stage went down, the band yelled "if there's sound, we'll play" to finish their set in a splendid, unique way, with the audience providing the light with their mobile phones. Fantastic, powerful gig.
Paul Banks on screen. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
The Bad
The Strokes: From Interpol to Strokes, from pleasant surprise to utter disappointment. While one can say the musicians tried despite, as it happened with the Black Keys on Thursday, the sound was mediocre, Julian Casablancas simply wasn't there. Apathetic, disinterested, with the head miles away from Primavera stage (maybe still at Camp Nou?). Sad, very sad a headliner behaves that way.

The Queen
Torres: We reserved Mackenzie Scott's gig for Sunday at BARTS (she also played at Fòrum on Saturday but it clashed with some other options), and what great choice turned to be. Only six tunes, but we are 110% sure no one at the venue felt the gig was anything than mesmerizing. Wounded folk that mutes into unstoppable indie-rock, damaged lyrics and distorted, threatening guitar lines, a voice that breaks, whispers and screams, frightening and letting the audience speechless. What a superb concert to end our Primavera Sound Festival 2015.
Torres haunting BARTS. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
Here are the links of the previous chapters!
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Primavera Sound 2015 in brief, day 3

No time to waste: here's the third chapter of our Primavera Sound 2015's chronicles. Friday 29th was the 'riot grrrl' day, full of acts to see: from music myths to most promising bands. Did it meet the expectations? Here's the answer...

The Good
Núria Graham: Saw her a couple of years ago at the presentation of a book: a young talent gifted with a mind blowing voice, but playing that sort of folkie-pop tunes seen too many times. But what we found at Pitchfork stage on Friday was something completely unexpected. An artist capable of doing whatever she wants, with tunes that morph into several things in a matter of seconds, from PJ Harvey abrasiveness to St.Vincent experimental approach to indie-rock to James Blake soulfulness. The discovery of the Festival.
Ms. Graham, the surprise of the Festival. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
Ex Hex: 'Rips' was one the best albums of past year, as fun, playful and addictive as rock should be. And that's exactly what the trio formed by Mary Timony, Betsy Wright and Laura Harris delivered at Pitchfork stage. Impossible not to smile with the guitar riffs, the rock-hero poses and the unstoppable strength of their tunes. We love you Mary Timony.
Ex Hex, rock goddesses. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
Damien Rice: We only saw about the second half of his show, but it was simply tremendous. All alone at Primavera stage he sounded immense, thunderous, gigantic. What a difference compared with the Black Keys on Thursday!

The Bad
Hidden stage: This interesting, appealing idea can improve. It's ok tickets have to be picked on a specific time and after they are gone, they are gone. But it doesn't make much sense to place the time to collect the tickets just before the gig itself. Or the queues afterwards. Anyway, once inside we were eager to see The Pastels... but the gig didn't meet the expectations. Maybe the venue (there's a wall boxing one of the sides of the stage, weird), or maybe the band, don't know, but although not saying it was a bad one, it was a bit mumsy, lifeless.
Hidden afternoon with The Pastels. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
The Julie Ruin: Seeing Kathleen Hanna live was, undoubtedly, one of the highlights of the Festival. And, in that sense, the show was something to remember. She is magnetic, an uncontainable force at stage. But the sound was awful (it's punk I got it but still), and her voice quite so-so, so despite the fun and straightforwardness of 'Run Fast', the show was, frankly, disappointing.
The one and only, Kathleen Hanna. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
Ride: Impeccable and sounding good all the gig but not very moving (maybe the people at the front rows have a different opinion). Slowdive's show last year was intense and emotionally charged. Can't say the same about Ride's performance.
Hearing beautiful noises with Ride. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
The Queen
Sleater-Kinney: Can't compare with the extraordinary show we were fortunate to attend in Paris a couple of months ago, but still, at Heineken stage they put a show to ratify what Sleater-Kinney means. Corin Tucker, Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss are stage beasts. No matter they play new tunes or classics, they throw all they have in every song. They are honesty, intensity and truth every single second performing. They are simply one of the best bands out there, and they demonstrated, once again, at Primavera Sound. The finale, with 'Dig Me Out', 'Entertain' and (yes, yes, yes) 'Modern Girl' can't be beaten.
Sleater- Kinney, the definition of a power trio. Photo: Bloodbuzzed
One more "big day" to come, Saturday 30th's chronicle about to arrive!