mad honey by shalloboi
Chicago based psych/drone aficionados Shalloboi have self-released a new single entitled 'Mad Honey' via bandcamp. The single also includes b-sides ‘Quietly Smoldering’ and the title track for their forthcoming album ‘Self Perpetuating Machine Of Loss And Hopeless Yearning'. The aforementioned album will be released digitally in mid-December and physically as a double cassette in March of 2017. Shalloboi are no strangers to the underground scene with a plethora of releases already under their belts. Their sound skips gracefully through swathes of ambient & shoegaze stylings permeated with droning psych rock swirls and blissful ethereal vocal progressions.
'Mad Honey' is available to buy/download or name your price right now via shalloboi.bandcamp.com
by Primal Music
Leeds based but New Zealand born lo-fi synth-gaze musician Maeve Munro a.k.a Young Hellions released a brand new double A-side single on September 23rd via Leeds based independent record label MUZAI Records, with the lead track entitled Fractures and Cacophony currently blasting through our speakers. With a sound that deftly twists through layers of stunning reverberation coupled with melodious dream like vocal progressions and senses pummelling wall of sound instrumentation, Young Hellions has a firm grip on a plethora of musical stylings that includes shoegaze, dreampop, lo-fi & synth-pop.
'Fractures and Cacophony' explodes into a maelstrom of fuzz, synth swells & repetitious percussion from the off, before its glorious vocal lines hazily float into ear shot. They cut through the frequency laden battle lines with ease, bringing clarity and blissful serenity to the piece as all around them wade neck deep in swirling reverberation.
Canadian based shoegaze legends SIANspheric have announced a brand new single entitled 'I Have It', lifted off their forthcoming album 'Writing The Future in Letters Of Fire', their first LP since 2001's 'The Sound of the Colour of the Sun'. SIANspheric have also announced that their stunning debut album 'Somnium' (from 1995) will be released on vinyl for the first time on October 28th. Both albums get their full release on the same day via the brilliant Sonic Unyon Records.
'I Have It' enters into earshot on a wave of squealing feedback & scraping guitar squall before we're introduced to glorious melody fuelled chord progressions and steadying instrumentation that swirls around the hazy vocal line with aplomb. The track weaves in and out of ambient styled percussion free breaks that filled with tremulous guts, throbbing baselines & layered vocal attacks, all steeped in reverberating frequencies.
ARTIST: Movie Brain
RELEASE DATE: 25th September 2016
RECORD COMPANY: Alien Age Records
Tennessee based dream gaze trio 'Movie Brain' have unleashed a stunning collection of four tracks on an EP aptly named 'Soma' via Alien Age Records. The EP is full of effervescent sounds and hazy sonic compositions coupled with soaring instrumentation and blissful vocalisations. This latest release follows on from the bands full length, self-titled debut album, released back in July, that contained four new tracks and a handful of previously released handpicked 'Favourite Tracks' lifted from the bands first three releases. Movie Brain are made up of Jonathan - guitar/vocals, Adam - bass guitar & Kevin - drums and the 'Soma' EP is available to buy/download right now from moviebrain.bandcamp.com
Soma by Movie Brain
'Soma' opens with the blissful 'Honey', a glistening tremulous instrumental piece that gracefully hovers within a cloud of layered reverberation, all neatly saddled on a bedrock of busy percussive hits, glorious guitar progressions and throbbing bass frequencies. Up next, the beautifully arranged 'Azure' ambles into earshot on a thread of melodious lead guitar before we're hit by a wall of golden hued noise in the form of tempered percussion, snaking guitars and the deep hum of the addictive bass lines. The vocals soar blissfully, held fast within a dreamy reverb induced bubble as the instrumentation weaves a magical trail of of sonic discovery. Utterly delectable and possibly my favourite track on the entire release.
'Wasting Away', the EP's penultimate track, is a beautiful slice of glorious dream pop, infused with jangling guitars and lazy percussion, the medley driven vocal lines, drenched in stunning reverb, swirl as they work through their pre-designated repetitions with aplomb deftly leading the track to its finale. The EP's self-titled closing track enters into earshot on a wave of plodding sonic swells, pounding drums and a woozy vocal. 'Soma' purrs as it undulates and moves hypnotically through its verse parts until the chord change interrupts the almost metronomic like drum pattern, instantaneously bringing the listener back to reality and introducing them to the tracks final throw of the dice, an exploding cacophony of magically golden reverb induced frequencies. An absolutely stunning finale to a blissful EP!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Del Chaney has spent the last four years not only fronting popular experimental Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, post punk, post rock & modern psych rock from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion. His other arm - Primal Radio - has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has hepled him in actively promoting a genre of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.
RELEASE: Motorcycle Song EP
RELEASE DATE: 29th July 2016
RECORD COMPANY: Elephant Stone Records
Florida’s Seafang released a trio of trilling, thrilling fuzzpop this summer. Out on Elephant Stone records, this debut release blends the best of late 80s British indie, a dollop of doowop and turns the speed up. Already having secured the support of BBC 6 Music in the UK and college stations the US over, it’s a milkshake that’s going down smoothly with gaze fans.
Motorcycle Song by Seafang
Motorcycle Song goes along at a lick, fuzz and hair flying out behind. There are some gothier tones in Summertime, but the pop sensibility is still strong and the influences of Ride and Lush come through clearly here. I Don’t Want To Be The One’s update on the 50s girl group aesthetic has a pleasing ‘end of summer vibe’, melancholy and pretty, like a sunset.
Motorcycle Song EP is available to buy/download right now on various formats from seafang.bandcamp.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
In her time, Sarah Cuthbert-Kerr has attended raves and rock clubs. She enjoys pedals, pizza and spy dramas. Sarah also plays guitar in Edinburgh-based noisemakers Wozniak and is co-founder of Morningside Young Team who put on gigs and put out records for discerning audiences who enjoy fuzz and confusion.
ARTIST: Travelling Wave
RELEASE DATE: 28th August 2016
RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned
Following on from their blistering 2013 full length release 'T-Wave' and their impressive collection of singles since that debut release including Adidas Shoestrings (April. 2014), Tradition and Evolution (May.2014) and A Cloud of Madness (Nov.2014), comes the latest immense assault on the senses from stunning Brazil based psych/gaze outfit Travelling Wave. The Simoom EP is a sonically sublime collection of four tracks that swirl gracefully within a hazy reverberating cloud of layered frequencies, soaring instrumentation and gloriously addictive vocal progressions. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Travelling Wave, the band are made up of Carol Alleoni - vocal/synth, Thiago Altafini - guitar/backvocal, Nathalia Oliveira - drums & Vitor Galvão -bass/synth and this latest EP is available to buy/download right now from travellingwave.bandcamp.com
Simoom by Travelling WaveSimoom opens up, squeezed within a swirling drone before Travelling Wave unleash their full instrumental might in the form of a massive wall of reverberating noise, coupled with pounding drums & soaring synth swells that impressively envelopes that addictive vocal will ease. 'In A Dream' undulates as it loops and arc's high into the ether, eventually soaring into its chorus progressions, blissfully spraying beautifully iridescent layered frequencies like sonic raindrops onto their listeners ears. A stunning opening salvo! Up next, 'Lotus' shimmies into earshot on glorious synth swells and throbbing bass frequencies before its metronomic percussive attack takes hold and the track sways into action with the addition of a melodious dark bass line. The guitars wail and intertwine with the instrumentation as the creeping vocal arrives, held fast within a pulsating sonic pulse. 'Lotus' meanders maliciously as it works through its gears, building tempestuously into a whirlwind of intense noise that crashes to finality like storm driven waves breaking on a perilous beach.
Dark swirling organ swells coupled with throbbing bass frequencies announce the arrival of 'Wind May', the EP's penultimate track, before we're swept up and dragged into the abyss by pounding drums and the arrival of droning guitars and reverb induced vocal progressions. Travelling Wave can instil stunningly dark atmosphere at will, dragging their listeners with them on a reverb filled thrill ride that breaks through layers of tremulous frequencies and soars into the ether. Vocaly sublime, 'Wind May' is a delicious slice of modern psych/gaze and my favourite track on this entire release. The EP's closing piece is a thing of beauty. 'The Unseen' launches into a maelstrom of instrumentation, with its pounding drums, cascading sweeps of monumental organ and synth swells, driving bass lines & droning guitars. Its explodes into its chorus progressions, ramping up the overdrive and pulsing immense reverberating instrumentation into the sonic ether. A blissful ending to a magnificent EP.
Simoom is available to buy/download right now from travellingwave.bandcamp.com
ARTIST: Jenny Besetzt
RELEASE: Tender Madness
RELEASE DATE: 15th July 2016
RECORD COMPANY: Friends Records
Tender Madness is a full length album by North Carolina’s Jenny Besetzt, a group who uses fast tempo in contrast with dark sounds to create deep and vast post-punk that sounds as if it was conceived at the beginning of the post-punk era, but was recorded much, much later. Over the course of eight tracks the band do little to confront the listener; an intelligent and crafty move… Instead they pull their music back from distinct definition and throw very few punches. You’re probably thinking that’s an insult, but it’s very much the opposite. Modern post-punk bands try so very hard for sounds and songs to be noticed… They throw soundscape after soundscape, turn instruments up louder, sing the lyrics in Japanese, play with their guitars not plugged into an amp and what not just so the audience, or the reviewer, says something like ‘this album is really in your face’ or ‘there is a lot going on in this album’. Sure they may be compliments, but when so many bands do it, it’s refreshing to hear a post-punk outfit sketch out songs and play them as they are… You know, without a million different guitar lines that all sound muted because the kick drum is turned up so loud.
Tender Madness by Jenny Besetzt
Tender Madness opens with ‘Authorless Speech’ a fantastically dark and shoegaze-inspired song that starts with slow and neat dream pop guitar after which fantastic double tap drums enter, but only distantly, in the background of the music. Through this brilliant piece of song writing, Jenny Besetzt begin to display the kind of musical colouring they fluently practice possess; firstly with the magnificent post-punk sound and then with the heavy, deep and baritone vocals, which brings the song onto a whole other level. Black As The Night purrs on a beautiful vocal, it's the albums entire vocal section that really holds everything together fantastically, especially the instrumental riffs and the beautiful underpinned synths. Such amazing synth tone may be heard on ‘Dorothy Everything’s Fine’, one of the albums true highlights; inspired by darkwave dance tracks and slow, classic post-punk guitar with bass that is drowned out by the aforementioned synth sounds during the chorus. Soft spoken, murmuring, deep vocals float heavily within the mix and the whole thing sounds like a true reflection of a style of sound that so many bands have tried to reach for but just end up sounding generic within. An average interlude follows, entitled ‘Kanizsa Triangle’ which is built predominantly around a choir like synth piece that plays softly with a few samples chipping in the background.
‘Lunar Talks’ opens with what sounds like a heavy metal riff, but eventually seeps back into a dream pop style tune. Over the course of the song, the band build up an alternative, dream like riff before splintering back into heavy, industrial sounds of the beginning giving the song a wild and spinning feeling. Perhaps the greatest song on the album is the playful, dreamy and utterly beautiful title track; its beginning is that of a loose, pictorial dream sketch, utilized through soaring synths and guitars. This song is the closest the band get to what some may refer to as ‘nostalgia’ and they do so with a kind of elegance and grace that never broaches textured simplicity. Eventually the song gets more downtempo and situates itself back in the light of the bands previous sound, but all the while it never exceeds its trance-like beauty and swift, easy appearance. Both Tender Madness & ‘The Rabbit’ acts as a sense of ease and ambience to the dark and heavy post-punk songs that preceded them. The Rabbit features lighter vocals, a brighter and more melodic sound courtesy of the indie-inspired guitar plucking and the pulsating soundscape of synth under the mix. One should also listen closely to the enthralling instrumental outro to the song, which crescendos into a fantastic math/post-rock inspired piece of guitar and drum playing. This tiny piece of music, enough to only fill a small portion of the song, is symbolism of absolute musical genius; subtle, engaging, alternative and absolutely captivating in its presentation.
And that’s that. But before you go and enjoy these songs on all their post-punk merit and dark but sweet musical textures, there is something more to be perceived about this album. Go out and find a modern post-punk album and I am sure that the band will go deeper and darker as the album goes on. Either that or they will chuck a lengthy, epic, synth and soundscape filled piece on the tail end of the release. Well, Jenny Besetzt have done neither of these. They’ve instead started with the dark and substantial alternative musings and drawn out the ending to something else, to something more; something that sounds more illuminated. With this in mind (and what was written before about how the band have presented the songs as they are) this album beats out on being another generic post-punk revival album; offering a neat conceptual reward for the listener by showcasing lighter songs on the end of the album. All in all the production and mixing are good and the performances are brilliant, but the real crux of the pleasures of this album are held within the band’s song writing ability, which at times sounds as though it is throwing a swift middle finger up to all the clichéd alternative bands out there. Where others would try too hard, they have not… And this shows itself simply and neatly through performance, concept and sound.
Tender Madness is available to buy/download right now from jennybesetzt.bandcamp.com
Cam Phillips is a writer and above all, a music lover, who seeks to gain experience through writing and listening. He is also an avid film viewer and art and literature junkie who enjoys creative writing. His most recent published work was featured on the Australian heavy music blog, I Probably Hate Your Band.
ARTIST: Stupid Cosmonaut
RELEASE: Astral Transmissions
RELEASE DATE: 30 September 2016
Hot on the heels of May's staggering debut release, the blistering 'Abstract Concepts' by UK based experimental psych outfit 'Stupid Cosmonaut', comes another impressive trip into the sonic unknown. 'Astral Transmissions' is a dark thrill ride into the sonic subconscious of a band who have no off switch when it comes to experimenting with frequency bending and sound manipulation to collectively create astonishing soundscapes that will both test your psyche and immerse you head long into a sonic world where you will experience something very few artists in this genre can do. The band are made up of Sam Read, Steven McNamara, Andy Hunt and Matthew Hattersley who collectively experiment with electronic, ambient and psychedelic sounds to stunning effect. 'Astral Transmissions' is available to buy/download digitally right now from stupidcosmonaut.bandcamp.com with pre-orders available for the limited edition cassette version, penned in for release on the 30th September available too.
Astral Transmissions by Stupid Cosmonaut
With an air of trepidation we push off into the unknown and float on a dark sea of swirling fuzzy drones and sequenced electronics coupled with hazy sampled vocalisations & pulsing tones as 'AT1: Fermium' builds momentum and unleashes a monolithic assault on the senses. It builds in intensity as layer after layer of repetitious instrumentation is added to the sonic whirlwind, each corner turned on this massive track introducing the listener to some new glitch, whirr or bleep, and all the while accompanied by that immense vocal sample that seems to hang in sonic suspension just out of earshot. 'AT1: Fermium' is ten minutes plus of musical schooling by one of the most interesting bands on the underground scene today. Up next, 'AT2: Ununtrium' drags itself into the open with a whirling drone and another vocal sample, barely audible under the pulsating drone and its accompanying fuzz. Without doing very much 'Stupid Cosmonaut' instrumentally instil intensity into the piece before unleashing a screaming sonic blast reminiscent to the soundtracks of some of the best science fiction movies of my youth. 'AT2: Ununtrium' is deeply cinematic and incredibly experimental as it deftly brings its listeners on a mind expanding sonic exercise.
'AT3: Hassium' is a testing beast. Coming in at sixteen minutes plus, this is possibly my favourite track on the entire release. It pulses and ripples astonishing sounds into the reverberating ether as it builds in intensity and drags you with it on a fast paced cloud of analogue instrumentation, sparse percussion and experimental abandonment. A triumph of monumental proportions and a recommendation from me. You simply must listen to this track via headphones to experience the whole sonic spectrum for yourselves. The albums penultimate track 'AT4: Curium' conjures up images of the magnificent space race between the US and USSR. The sampled countdown runs cautiously as the track builds and those impressive synth swells force magnificent atmosphere into the piece before we're once again treated to a beautifully constructed slice of ambient psychedelia. The shortest track on the album coming in at four minutes plus, 'AT4: Curium' is a welcome reprise with its serine instrumentation, whirring bleeps and calming atmospheric effects.
The albums closing piece, the brilliantly atmospheric 'AT5: Dubnium', crawls into earshot on a droning dub synth line thats drenched in glorious reverb. Sampled vocalisations again accompany the piece and cascading piano lines add to the intensity before the sequenced percussion enters the fray (which I have to say 've missed immensely on the previous tracks) and the pace quickens. 'Stupid Cosmonaut' unleash their psych/dub leanings as swirling drones & break beat percussion take over and gently massage the senses before we're lured into a false disease of serine security. 'AT5: Dubnium' has a wonderful sting in its tail as the instrumentation merges into one big swirling sonic maelstrom, leading us into its tremulous finale. A wonderful ending to a magnificent album.
ARTIST: The Intelligence Service
RELEASE: Maladies EP
RELEASE DATE: 02/01/16
RECORD COMPANY: Wiener Records
Hailing from Vancouver, Canada ‘The Intelligence Service’ collectively creates stunning psych induced garage rock, peppered with droning guitars & melodic organ swells that are tinged with subtle shoegazing flourishes. The band are made up of Alex. P - Vocals & Guitars, Heather Campbell - Vocals, Organ & Analog Synth, Sam Daoust - Bass & Backing Vocals & Dror Zur - Drums and their latest four track EP entitled ‘Maladies’ is getting the cassette treatment via independent label ‘Weiner Records (A Burger Records Subsidiary)’.
Maladies EP by The Intelligence Service
The EP opens up with the monolithic ‘Distraction (Here Comes Dror)’ & with a running time of fourteen minutes plus its recommended that you strap yourselves in and make yourselves comfortable. This track is insatiable! Opening with a swirling droning synth that reverberates on its own sonic axis before being joined by shuffling percussion, melodic organ swells, throbbing bass lines & a warm fuzzy guitar progression. It builds & builds into a cacophony of stunning noise that swirls around some impressive spoken word as it meanders through musical peaks and troughs increasing in intensity around it’s raging sonic maelstrom. An absolutely stunning fourteen minutes of sublime sonic sounds. Up next, ‘Driving To My Sun’ does exactly as it says on the tin! Hypnotic organ swells compliment the driving guitars and that steadying drum pattern as duel vocal lines help lift the chorus changes out of a monotonous vocal trench that had been ploughed during the verses. Another solid track from as band who are starting to grow on me.
Track three is explosive! ‘School Me’ pulses on it’s foundation of throbbing melodic bass frequencies, addictive drum hits and driving fuzzed up repetitive guitars. The duel boy/girl vocal attack adds impressive atmosphere. The closing track ‘Can’t Believe’ leans more into garage rock territory than the previous three tracks whilst keeping a tentative finger firmly within a psych rock mould by subtly layering melodic organ swells underneath that pounding instrumentation.
Perth based shoegaze six piece 'Dream Rimmey' have announced a brand new single entitled 'Landslide', available for all to hear via their soundcloud page right now. The band are made up of Ali Flintoff - guitars/vocals, Jack Gaby - guitars, George Foster - drums/vocals, Vin Buchanan-Simpson - synth/vocals, Ben Mcdonald - bass & Lee Napper - guitars and collectively they create a shimmering wall of noise, filled with swirling melodious frequencies and immense reverberating instrumentation all topped off with a sublime vocal attack.
'Landslide' swoons with impressive vocalisations, circumnavigated by swirling synth lines, steadying drum patterns and layered reverb drenched guitars who's lead licks purr as they wind their way around the entire piece and soar impressively into the ether with blissful aplomb.