EP REVIEW | By Night With Spear - Seeing In The Dark

ARTIST: By Night With Spear

RELEASE: Seeing In The Dark

RELEASE DATE: 13th January 2017

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

Just as its cover art, the musical contents of 'Seeing In The Dark' by New York based shoegaze/dream pop band 'By Night With Spear' is vividly beautiful and colorful in a contemplative and distant style. Spread over the course of an album, 'By Night With Spear' explore every corner of dream pop and shoegaze music; generally guided by the beautiful and talented vocal performances and singing that adds another dimension to the sound in context with the genre. In a weird way its almost a light version of blackgaze; where guitars and drums remain steadfast in creating wall of sounds for the vocals to hover over. However, in this case, the guitars are less heavy and the drums never break into a blast beat; but the music remains strong and full frontal, creating a wall of sound of melody and musical colors that deserve both praise and recognition.

‘Starlight’ opens with the surge of light, fluffy, dream pop inspired guitars and the slow rattle and roll of the drumming. The vocals slowly seep into the mix; high and wavering in a pitch a kin to musical warmth and brightness. It displays a beautiful, well-written chorus that’s an album highlight. ‘Starlight’ follows into 'Twenty Nights’ that slows things down slightly and introduces more shoegaze elements into the bands sound with feedback inspired guitar backings and heavier/pounding drums in the back of the mix. The outro section, where the vocals rise even higher, adds more emphasis on the musical blending that occurs through the production. ‘Blue Rider’ is another slow, sensual and emotive piece of music making. Perhaps more so than previous tracks, it showcases By Night With Spear’s ability to create music of pure beauty and adoration. Between the rolling drums that set the scene, to the blue-sky feel of the guitars, the song captures a moment of complete bliss and categorizers the band as one whose music conjures images of beaches, of the cool, colorful sand and water as the sun dips to the horizon; it’s something only truly fantastic dream pop bands can do. Impressive.

‘Moving Projections’ turns the mood post-punk with double tap snare and a heavier atmosphere. The guitars take a step deeper and the whole song turns somewhat darker than the previous tracks. Meanwhile, the vocals remain at their great heights; creating a mesmerizing and interesting counterpoint to the tone of the music and instrumentation of the song. The album highlight, in my opinion, is ‘Martyr’, which builds upon the aforementioned powers and elements of ‘Blue Rider’ to create a visionary piece of dreamy shoegaze music that attends to all the essential things that dream pop music should make you feel: contemplative, wandering and a deep sense of yearning for the past. ‘Given’ combines the elements of alternative dream pop music with the darker touch of ‘Moving Projections’ style post-punk, and rounds it off with a flavor akin to indie pop music. The drums bounce around, while the guitars play in accompaniment to the once-again beautiful vocals. The instrument and vocal performances are outstanding, especially the vocals, as is the production and the overall mixing.

Dream pop is a difficult genre to get right in the modern age of the Internet and connectivity. In it’s humble origins of the 80’s, many bands were praised for their unique musical style and techniques within the genre. With the emergence of the Internet and a worldwide musical grand interest in dream pop music, so many bands try hard to create something unique or interesting to step out from the crowd of mediocrity. By Night With Spear, much like the fantastically reflective guitar tones of Pastel Coast, succeed in this leap from the crowd; creating a kind of dream pop album that utilizes beauty and reminiscence in place of fancy FX and wild production techniques that amount to boredom and self-indulgence. But simultaneously, 'Seeing In The Dark' is far from being over-intellectualized or avant-garde in the contextual elements of its genre, and it could easily be an introduction to dream pop and a more refined shoegaze for a listener who hasn’t been listening to it all the while. It’s an engaging listen, primarily created through the grand avenues of performance, mixing, production and sound.

4/5

LINKS:

bynightwithspear.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/ByNightWithSpear

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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.


EP REVIEW | Bloom Waves - Yumi On The Shore

ARTIST: Bloom Waves

RELEASE: Yumi On The Shore

RELEASE DATE: 27th March 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

Although self-released back in March 2016, the brilliant five track EP 'Yumi On The Shore' seems to have only been sent in to us very recently! I can't really imagine why but I'm glad that they decided to submit to us. 'Bloom Waves' hail from New York and they create blissed out shoegaze gems filled to the brim with subtle dream-pop connotations and shimmering swathes of sonic brilliance. The band is the musical project of Ren Julius Reyes and 'Yumi On The Shore' is available to buy/download right now from bloomwaves.bandcamp.com

The EP opens up with a beautifully intense wall of reverberation as wave after wave of guitar driven noise pummels the senses. ‘Only A Daydream’ shudders on a hazy percussive pattern as it’s lead guitars soar and that immense vocal (reminiscent at times to Tom Barman of experimental music stalwarts ‘Deus’) takes hold. Up next, the grungy ‘Marionette’ growls as it unfurls it’s sonic tendrils. Wailing guitars and pounding drums swirl within a sullen vortex as throbbing bass frequencies melodiously astute instrumental effects loop and arc throughout the musical spectrum.

The EP’s self titled track jangles on a beautiful opening guitar line before exploding into a cacophony of glorious instrumentation that includes driving guitars, a subtle underscoring of ethereal synths and repetitive percussion. It’s lead guitar lines undulate as they intertwine with another impressive vocal track taking ‘Yumi On The Shore’ to new levels. The penultimate track oozes wall of sound guitars and harmonious vocalisations. ‘Fall Like Snow’ is a modern day shoegaze call to arms that is filled with swathes of reverberating frequencies and pounding drum patterns. It’s vocals ride a wave of impressive instrumentation and stunning musicianship to make this track my favourite on the entire release. The EP’s closing piece enters into earshot on a deafening bedrock of sequenced percussion and repetitive guitars. Bass frequencies throb as ‘Dive’ pulses a maelstrom of fuzzy frequencies out into the ether. A fitting ending to a marvellous EP.

4/5

LINKS:

bloomwaves.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/bloomwaves

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Del Chaney has spent the last four years not only fronting popular experimental Irish based 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 helped 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.


ALBUM REVIEW | Miss Mobile Home - Glimmer Down

a2017233375_16ARTIST: Miss Mobile Home

RELEASE: Glimmer Down

RELEASE DATE: June 24th 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

New York based dreamgazing duo ‘Miss Mobile Home’ have unleashed their highly anticipated full length follow up to 2014’s immense ‘Phototaxis EP’. ‘Glimmer Down’ see’s the band continue to deliver shimmering reverb laced soundscapes coupled with stunningly dreamy vocal progressions that collectively manifest a modern edge to a well worn & highly respected musical genre. The band are made up Chris Stoddard – Guitars, Drums, Synth, Writing & Mixing and Samantha Ritter – Vocals & Synth. ‘Glimmer Down’ had it’s full release on the 24th June 2016 and it is available to buy/download right now from: missmobilehome.bandcamp.com

A swirling maelstrom of repetitive droning noise ushers in ‘Fine Machine’, the album’s opening track and its not long until we’re introduced to a beautifully ethereal vocal courtesy of Ritter, blissfully wrapped within entrancing metronomic percussion and some brilliantly hypnotic guitar lines. Up next, ‘California (Run On)’, begins with a layered wall of reverberating guitar, closely followed by minimal percussive hits intrinsically permeated by wave after wave of beautifully translucent swirling vocal progressions. A stunning track that weaves and arc’s all over the sonic ether. ‘Sleepwalker’ charges into ear shot on rumbling bass frequencies intertwined with a solid foundation of thundering percussion. It soars into its chorus progressions with aplomb and carries the listener with it, daydreaming into the shimmering ether. ‘Hazel Witch’ begins with a subtle psych-gaze twist as those psychedelically induced guitar progressions swirl intently within a dark creeping reverb induced haze. The vocal track wades into the mix pulsing ripples of dreamy frequencies into the melting pot as the track explodes into its chorus parts. Another stunning track thats worthy of your ears.

Up next, ‘Castles’ slows proceedings down considerably as we step off the edge of the world and float on wave after wave of beautifully executed & highly melodic vocals, steeped in spacious reverb and intensely circumnavigated by those stunningly addictive guitar parts. ‘Castles’ is a dream-pop masterpiece! The rumbling opening chords of the albums penultimate track entitled ‘Still’ shatters the ethereal serenity of the aforementioned soundscape and we’re quickly introduced to cascading guitar thrills and another stunning vocal performance. The albums closing piece is utterly addictive. ‘Ronnie’ blasts into earshot on a melodic guitar line, pounding drums and soaring organ swells that seem to hover just under audible range as its haunting vocals balance tentatively on a sonic tight-wire. It streams into a stunning organ break before erupting into a blissful cascading synth line. ‘Ronnie’ is intensely hypnotic, addictively ethereal and its a fitting finale to a stunning release.

4/5

LINKS:

missmobilehome.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/MissMobileHome

twitter.com/missmobilehome

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Del Chaney has spent the last four years not only fronting popular experimental Irish based 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 helped 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.


ALBUM REVIEW | Solilians - Shin

a1760897817_16ARTIST: Solilians 

RELEASE: Shin

RELEASE DATE: November 18th 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Goodbye Better Records

'Solilians' are a Merrick, NY space rock ensemble that mix Hebrew vocals, ambient dub, and even shoegaze. They sound unlike anything I’ve heard in recent years, sounding as out there as some of A Sunny Day in Glasgow’s material. That only scratches the surface, because they throw in klezmer and horns too. To quote the press kit: ‘Solilians space drone dreams are the interstellar journeys of mystic seekers, mantra minimalism for the next generation. Benjamin Malkin's slow motion ambient dub prisms of klezmer melody refract Sharon Malkin's Mediterranean Hebrew beauty; while Gabriel Walsh's psychedelic sci-fi edge dances with Neptune Sweet's otherworldly cosmic majesty, all coming together on Shin, the four-piece's debut full-length (Think Stereolab slowed down to Stars Of The Lid).

The band got their start via the 7-inch soundtrack of The Binah Comics, a super-powers tale without violence that describes a woman sick of all the insanity and nuclear posturing surround­ing her homeland. A collaboration between Benjamin's writing and the great illustrator Ian Densford, The Binah Com­ics proved successful and Malkin put together his dream team of some of today’s best space rock minds to create ambient reflections of the comics. Starting off, there is 'Hine Ma Tov (Merc Yes Mix)' with horns, slow jam beats, and a droning aspect to it that invites and keeps the listener engaged. 'Hatikvah The Next Generation' retains the same mysterious elements, and it’s all about the emotion elicited, so the lyrics matter less than the music, at least for me. Its center is a drone and numerous voices move in and through the mix, leaving the listener feeling a bit unsettled. 'Lamedvavniks' exceeds eight minutes and is an interstellar journey into the heart of space. Vocals emanate from the creepy fringes of an event horizon, and immerse your ears in cosmic dream pop. This is music to be enjoyed over a great set of headphones and infinite time to let your mind expand and take it all in.

'Rev’s Gold' is much shorter and offers listeners a trippy sonic tapestry mingled with subdued vocals. It is music that takes you out of yourself, drawing you into a daydream. 'Hine Ma Tov' makes another appearance in the form of the Space Drone Dream Mix and this time it’s 13 minutes long! Prepare to float away into the ether. 'I Have Been, And Always Shall Be, Your Friend' takes its title from a Spock quote, and many hued layers of sound propel you straight in and you wish it would never end. Pulsating synths burgeon and grow in volume before it all comes to a dead stop. 'Planet Binah' may well be the centerpiece of this album, named as it is for The Binah Comics. It is another 13 plus minute journey, demanding that you stay present and experience its pulsating presence. The singer’s voice is submerged with synthesizers taking center stage. It all comes to a close with 'Post-Rev’s Reprise', a somewhat disquieting drone that winds down quickly. In short, this is album unlike anything you’ve heard this year, or any year for that matter. It is a fascinating and demanding work, but one that will reward you with repeated listens. Well worth seeking out for fans of international space rock laced with ambient dream pop.

4/5

LINKS:

Solilians.bandcamp.com

goodbyebetter.com

solilians.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

elizabeth

Music has always been a driving force for Elizabeth Klisiewicz, which she days "continues to define my existence". At present, she writes for The Big Takeover Magazine and The Active Listener Blog, and when not writing technical manuals, she gets her thrills from reading mysteries, birdwatching, and can always be found with a camera and a maxed-out storage card full of music.


ALBUM REVIEW | Belle Mare - Heaven Forget

a1597040533_16ARTIST: Belle Mare

RELEASE: Heaven Forget

RELEASE DATE: 30th September 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

Brooklyn dream poppers Belle Mare have recently self-released their confident and really wonderful debut album Heaven Forget. They inhabit the same dreamy electronic spaces as bands like New Order, The Cure, and Cocteau Twins, to name just a few.

Opening track 'Georgia' uses moody synth along with Amelia Bushell’s reverb speckled vocals to great effect. Imagine if The Cure had a female singer and you are only getting started. The follow up tune 'Cicada' is extended and gorgeous, containing equal parts Beach House and Radiohead in its soaring textures. Just lovely! 'Every Night' is conversational and intimate, with a bright, jazzy buzz to propel it along. 'How Much Longer' proudly trots out its New Order influence, with synths and metronomic percussion front and center. Amelia’s voice floats over it all like a skein of silk, through which you can view the wonders of the world.

'Dark of My Evening' is entrancing with warm washes of organ that slowly builds in intensity. It is stuffed full of catchy riffs and Amelia sounds particularly fine here. 'Ghostly' is another stunner, and all sonic elements mesh together effortlessly. Amelia’s ethereal vocals are woven into the melodic fabric, and it all works in perfect synchronicity. 'Rehearsed Lines' runs along the same introspective, melancholy lines as Lotte Kestner, while 'All This Time' dials up the energy a bit and bursts through your head in trippy bursts of color. Amelia hums on parts of this, and it’s a fun trip. 'Feel You Against My Heart' dwells in darker spaces populated with chilly synths, only alleviated slightly by Amelia’s airy vocals. 'In the Fall' is the lengthy coda to this bright, elegant, and beautiful record. Recommended for anyone who enjoys savory dream pop with touches of psych and even jazz to sweeten the pot.

4/5

'Heaven Forget' is available to buy/download right now from: bellemare.bandcamp.com

LINKS:

bellemare.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/bellemaremusic

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

elizabeth

Music has always been a driving force for Elizabeth Klisiewicz, which she days "continues to define my existence".  At present, she writes for The Big Takeover Magazine and The Active Listener Blog, and when not writing technical manuals, she gets her thrills from reading mysteries, birdwatching, and can always be found with a camera and a maxed-out storage card full of music.


NEW VIDEO PREMIERE | Decorum - Near Gone

 

Brooklyn based experimental post-punk/dark-wave trio 'Decorum' have unleashed a masterful new video to accompany their latest single entitled 'Near Gone'. Summoning the ghost of MTV and those early 90's music video trends, 'Decorum' have used a home made green screen to superimpose themselves over a dilapidated church. The video was filmed in their closet of a practice space which measures 9ft by 9ft. It's this kind of DIY attitude that makes bands like 'Decorum' stand out from the crowd. After all, the foundations of post-punk were manufactured around the creative genius of forward thinking DIY musicians. Without their educated madness there would be no post-punk!

Recommended!

LINKS:

decorum.nyc

decorumnyc.bandcamp.com


EP REVIEW | curelight wounds - Wearing The Strings

wearing-the-stringsARTIST: Curelight Wounds

RELEASE: Wearing The Strings EP

RELEASE DATE: November 1st 2016

RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned

Brooklyn based noisy lo-fi aficionados ‘Curelight Wounds’ unleash a monumental brand new four track EP to the masses entitled ‘Wearing The Strings’ on November 1st 2016. The EP brings with it a mixed bag of influential sounds that includes surging shoegaze, driving post punk and a splattering of lo-fi frequencies that collectively are guaranteed to stir the deepest of melancholic feelings from the most introverted amongst the underground gazing fraternity.

‘Wearing The Strings’ opens up with its title track, gloriously held within a turbulent maelstrom of angry noise and driving melodious bass frequencies. ‘Wearing The Strings’ weaves and soars effortlessly through layers of screaming feedback and pounding drums as its vocals swim through a deep dark sea of lo-fi brilliance. Up next, (the very punk like) ‘Sail It Away’ is awash in reverberation as its brilliant bass line undulates between the soaring guitars and the pounding drums whilst all the while being straddled by a repetitious vocal progression. ‘Sail It Away’ is absolutely magnificent and probably my favourite track on this entire release.

The EP’s penultimate track is a work of art. ‘Salted Hour’ drives headlong into the sonic ether on a skittish percussive pattern brilliantly underscored by weaving post-punk inspired bass frequencies and a raging cacophony of thunderous reverberation. Again, the lo-fi vocals cut an unwavering wedge through proceedings as the swirling accompanying guitars perform whammy bar theatrics as they unleash a wave of beautiful noise. The final track on this impressive release is ‘All In Red’. A melodious affair filled with snaking bass lines and addictive lead guitar progressions that weave in and out of that sublime vocal take with ease. Reminiscent at times to early ‘Cure’ or Boston’s own ‘Swirlies’, ‘All In Red’ is a fitting ending to a bloody marvellous EP.

4/5

LINKS:

facebook.com/CurelightWounds/

curelightwounds.bandcamp.com

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.


NEW SINGLE PREMIERE | curelight wounds - Salted Hour

New York based noisy lo-fi shoegazers 'curelight wounds' have unleashed an immense new single entitled 'Salted Hour' lifted from their forthcoming four track EP entitled 'Wearing The Strings', penned in for release on November 1st 2016. This latest EP follows on from their March 2016 release entitled 'Strange Collapse'.

'Salted Hour' drives headlong into the sonic ether on a skittish percussive pattern brilliantly underscored by weaving post-punk inspired bass frequencies and a raging maelstrom of reverberation. The lo-fi vocals cut an unwavering wedge through proceedings as the swirling accompanying guitars perform whammy bar theatrics as they unleash a cacophony of beautiful noise!

Recommended!

LINKS:

facebook.com/CurelightWounds/

curelightwounds.bandcamp.com


NEW VIDEO PREMIERE | Reunionunion - Photosynthesis

New York based experimental musical aficionados Adam Watkins & Patrick Savage aka Reunionunion have returned with the first single and its stunning accompanying video entitled 'Photosynthesis' lifted off their forthcoming highly anticipated sophomore album. The band wowed the underground music fraternity back in January 2016 with their debut self-titled release and their impressive melding of shoegaze, alt-rock, post-rock and dream-pop to create a impressive cacophony of glorious noise.

'Photosynthesis' is a peeled back slice of summer sun that sits on a repetitive sequenced percussive pattern and is circumnavigated by swirling guitar lines and subtle synth swells. The instrumentation hums as it glides alongside those impressive dreamy vocal lines, constantly building until we're guided to a sudden finale.

Impressive stuff!

LINKS:

reunionunion.bandcamp.com

facebook.com/reunionunion/

reunionunion.com


NEW SINGLE PREMIERE | Vivienne Eastwood - Messy

14102926_843051432462699_8907323824625434156_o

New York based alt-gazers 'Vivienne Eastwood' have unleashed a staggering new single entitled 'Messy', lifted off their forthcoming EP, penned in for release on October 6th 2016. This new single & forthcoming EP follows on from the only single released to date by the band, the fantastic 'Rose Pedals', a track that gets regular airplay over on our sister radio station Primal Radio! So you can guess that we're really excited about this latest single and the forthcoming EP. 'Vivienne Eastwood' are a fuzzy reverberating slice of quality, melody driven brilliance who create stunning, layered soundscapes that simply fly!

'Messy' is a floating sonic monolith, full of beautifully translucent effervescent tones and golden hued frequencies that envelope the senses and and aid floatation through the mechanisms of sound. Vocally sublime, it soars through its hazy progressions with ease, drenched in reverb and pulsing fuzzy melodies.

Recommended listening!

LINKS:

vivienneeastwood.bandcamp.com

soundcloud.com/vivienne-eastwood

facebook.com/vivienneeastwoodband