New Reels: ‘Wow’ by Beck

New Reels: ‘Wow’ by Beck

Everyone’s favourite multi-award winning, genre hopping, geek outsider singer/songwriter is back… …something which is, as you may well agree, a cause for some small kind of celebration. His 13th as-yet-untitled studio album drops around about sometime fairly soon and there is a justifiable sense of expectation, coming after 2014’s Grammy winner Morning Phase. ‘Wow’ is the second single (after last years ‘Dreams’) to be taken from that album and sees Beck in full b-boy mode. It’s funky, a little grime-y even, and comes with a video that at first appears to be a bunch of random stuff – Beck on Read more »

New Reels: ‘Warts’ by Hinds

New Reels: ‘Warts’ by Hinds

The Spanish indie group’s latest single comes with a super-stylish video. One of MVD’s current albums-of-the-year is Leave Me Alone the debut from this female four-piece who hail from Madrid. Full of melodic hooks and ragged charm, it’s a must-have album for those that don’t already have it (that’s an order), and must-listen-to album for those that already do. Originally a two-piece consisting of singer/guitarists Carlotta Cosials and Ana García Perrote called Deers,  in 2014 after releasing their critically lauded debut single, the 2-track Demo, they recruited Ade Martin (bass) and Dutch-born Amber Grimbergen (drums) and somewhere along the way Read more »

The Bends by Radiohead

The Bends by Radiohead

We explore the album that proved there was plenty more to Oxford’s finest than ‘Creep’… With their status as one of the world’s premier rock bands long since established (and reaffirmed by the excitement surrounding plans for a new tour and album) it seems strange to think back to a time when Radiohead were seen as one-song wonders. And yet for a year or two at the beginning of their career that was pretty much the case. In 1992 they had announced themselves to the world with their mega-hit ‘Creep’ which with it’s quiet/loud dynamic and introspective lyrics had come Read more »

‘Emperor Tomato Ketchup’ by Stereolab

‘Emperor Tomato Ketchup’ by Stereolab

In 1996 Anglo-French band Stereolab may not have been the most famous band in the world but they were very close to being the coolest, and this album is the proof. Looking back on the mid-90’s music scene in Britain today, our memories selectively filtered through the eyes of a history already written a thousand times, is to imagine that little else was happening on the so-called ‘alternative’ scene but the leery beered-up exuberance of Britpop, which was effectively the moment what had been loosely known as ‘indie’ going overground. Suddenly the charts and pub jukeboxes everywhere were full of Read more »

Unsung Figures No.7: The Shaggs

Unsung Figures No.7: The Shaggs

Music, like all art, elicits – or at least should elicit – all kinds of value laden responses from those who engage with it, whether casually or obsessively or somewhere inbetween. We can all think of music we hate, and indeed if you are an obsessive (like us) then the music you don’t like defines you just as strongly as the music you do. Example: in the wake of Phil Collins anouncing his un-retirement music fans everywhere seem to be queuing up to insist the he un-unretires, such is the strength of feeling towards his music. It’s kind of inexplicable Read more »

Rooting for the criminals: ‘Been Caught Stealing’ by Jane’s Addiction

Rooting for the criminals: ‘Been Caught Stealing’ by Jane’s Addiction

The video that epitomizes the delightful extravaganza that is Jane´s Addiction. One of the first bands of the “Alternative Rock” movement, Jane´s Addiction helped defined an era.  Formed by Perry Farrell… before I go any further I want to take a moment to acknowledge the force of nature that is Perry Farrell. Farrell is a musician who not only was a front man to the band and the whole revoltion around music in the early 90´s, but he is also the creator of the festival Lollapalooza. He is outspoken, intelligent, independent and constantly evolving, now on a quest to “rebuild the middle class Read more »

New Reels: “Friday I’m In Love” by Yo La Tengo

New Reels: “Friday I’m In Love” by Yo La Tengo

The American indie trio return with a nifty cover of the classic single by The Cure. Yo La Tengo are one of those bands who’ve never been fashionable but have been around so long now they’ve kind of bypassed the need for such things and created their own niche by simply staying there (The Fall are another prime example of such an act). Throughout their 30-odd year career husband and wife team Ira Kaplan and Georgia Hubley along with James McNew (bass player since 1992) have ploughed their own unique furrow making music that often defies easy categorization but I Read more »