acb: (fey indie boy)
I'm back at work; slightly zombified due to not having gotten enough sleep last night.

The stack of CDs I ordered from Shelflife's clearance in early November finally showed up today. I was wondering where it had disappeared to; it turns out that they sent it by surface mail. Which means it probably spent the past two months making its way through the Panama Canal on a ship.

manifest )

The cover of the "Weather Sensitive" EP by Postal Blue (a Brazilian indiepop band, if I recall correctly) looks rather like one of Crushworthy's Hydroplane/Cat's Miaow sleeves. Which is probably because both lifted design cues (halftoned photographs, that tall sans-serif font) from Blue Note or someone.
And do Free Loan Investments sound like Heavenly/Tallulah Gosh or what?

The Chips

Dec. 19th, 2005 12:32 pm
acb: (melbourne tram)
I've just ordered the new Minimum Chips record from Red Eye in Sydney*. The total cost, including postage, will be AUD$30.71, or approximately £12.62, which isn't bad.

(Sorry, [livejournal.com profile] givemethegun; I appreciate your offer of picking it up for me, but needed it in time for my end-of-year CD writeup. Though there are a few other titles I'm interested in.)

* the first place I could find that had medium-sized Australian indie and did mailorder. ChaosMusic is hopeless these days and seems to have little that you wouldn't find in a suburban Sanity (i.e., don't even think about anything non-mainstream); a far cry from when they bought Gaslight and tried to assume the aura of coolness that came with it. Meanwhile, the Chips' label, Trifekta (distributed by FMR), is too big and well-distributed (in Australia) for the small indie outlets to bother with.
acb: (buttons)
I trekked down to Brixton last night to see Suburban Kids With Biblical Names. They were really good; classic indie pop with jangly guitars, trumpets, bongos, catchy melodies and harmonies, and sufficiently unusual/tricky rhythms and arrangement to keep things interesting. I picked up one of the 3 copies of their CD they had with them, and am listening to it now.

(There are so many good bands coming out of Sweden these days. Let's see: SKWBN, Jens Lekman, The Radio Dept. and Sambassadeur, to name just four.)

The other bands were OK too; Farfarlo were decent indiepop circa Sounds-of-Leamington-Spa, though some say they're in danger of turning Coldplay-smooth* and bland (I only saw a few of their songs, though). The Bleeding Hearts were OK though unexceptional; the most remarkable thing about them was that the frontman looked like Nosferatu crossed with Marilyn Manson, which didn't at all go with the music. Michaelmas were fun again, reminding me a bit of The Rumours.

The DJ also played the new Belle & Sebastian single. To my ears, it sounds a bit like the New Radicals' "Get What You Give" Toploader's "Dancing In The Moonlight". Which, for a released single, is probably a good thing.

* Talking point: Are Coldplay, Keane and Badly Drawn Boy are the inevitable logical consequences of C86/Sarah Records-style twee/non-macho indiepop? Discuss.
acb: (passionate subscriber)
A parcel just arrived from Australia, containing four CDs:
  • Francis Plagne - "Idle Bones" (rather quirky multi-instrumental art-pop, interspersed with lots of environmental recordings; it's a bit like something from a Montréal post-rock collective only with the moroseness replaced by a jaunty playfulness. Well, actually, it's a set of enviromnental recordings and drones with three or so jaunty songs scattered between them, though, given that it's from Synæsthesia, that is hardly surprising)
  • Machine Translations - "Wolf on a String"
  • The Winter Ship - "Teardrops" (rather nice Melbourne shoegazer/post-rock, with more than a passing resemblance to Mogwai)
  • and the Australian edition of Camera Obscura's "Underachievers Please Try Harder", with its bonus tracks ("San Francisco Song" and "Amigo Mio", for what it's worth); that came out in 2004, but I was too busy packing to move to London to buy it at the time.
Thanks to my sister for doing the rounds of Melbourne's record shops to pick those up for me.
acb: (buttons)
img_1146Last night, I rounded off the frantic week of gig-going with a visit to a night named Don't Look Down, at Barfly, to see Robots In Disguise. They were enjoyable, dancing around, mock-fighting, playing guitar and bass and singing over a backing track and visuals coming off a DVD. They were not unlike Chicks On Speed, or perhaps Le Tigre, in concept; one part crunchy rock riffs, one part danceable electronic sequences, and deliberately rough and unpolished vocals.

I can think of about 3 or 4 Melbourne bands I could see them on a bill with.
acb: (fey indie boy)
A copy of Den Baron's The Soundtrack Of My Life arrived in the post last night. I ordered it on the strength of various tracks I had heard around the place (the Airpop Terminal 2 compilation that was everywhere for a while, and the Seven Summers: International Pop Vol. 2 compilation).

It's quite decent summery jangly bossa-pop; a bit like the Sounds of Leamington Spa compilations or various Sarah bands, with a few 60s soul influences, some synth strings and the odd thrift-shop keyboard. It's not too far from Spearmint (who are also on Apricot outside of the UK). It has its ups and downs, and the vocals sound a bit awkward in places, though that's all C86, innit? The singer's German accent (think thin indie-boy vocals, not sternly Teutonic goth-metal) adds to the C86-ish shambolicity of the package.

When I get back into DJing at indie-pop nights (possibly when Tigermilking gets back off the ground), I'll probably spin some tracks from this; alternatively, I could see about sneaking a run of twee jangle-pop into a Lounge AC30 set (once that gets out of hiatus); late in the set, when people have had a bit to drink, one could probably get away with a lot worse.
acb: (morrissey)
I just found out that My Favorite have broken up. I'm glad I got to see them, though it is somewhat bittersweet to know that there isn't any more where that came from.
acb: (make coldplay history)
A package arrived in the mail today for me, containing the new EP from BAM BAM. (They're that really tight pop/rock band (they call themselves "Swank Rock") from Melbourne, who sound somewhere between Transvision Vamp, 1960s garage rock and a bit of Lush; they're fronted by Kristie Montagu, who wrote a best-selling book about op shops in Melbourne and does other cool things.) I haven't had a chance to listen to it yet, though look forward to doing so.

Tonight, I went to Bethnal Green, and caught most of a band called The Kissing Time. They were enjoyable, in a post-C86/Library Records sort of way; they sounded a bit like Tugboat (mostly the vocal harmonies). A few of their songs were a bit bland and AOR-ballady; one of them sounded not unlike 1927. I'm told that this is because one of them is into Coldplay.

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