RELEASE: Sleep Cycle
RELEASE DATE: 21st July 2017
RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned
Tunisian based shimmering dream-gaze duo 'Retrieval' unleashed their latest album entitled 'Sleep Cycle' to the masses back on the 21st July 2017 and as far as we're concerned this instantly catapulted them into the 'Best Of 2017' category in the process. Their previous incarnation stood firmly in indie rock territory but boy are we glad that they decided to step outside that generic melting pot and turn their attention to pastures new. Their collective sound now swirls effortlessly through hazy 90's era shoegaze but is definitely underscored with modern instrumentation & production techniques that lifts their sonic footprint to new heights. The band are made up of Omar Chouikha - vocals/guitar/drums/ synths & Tima Savchenko - vocals/guitar/bass/synths and 'Sleep Cycle' is available to buy/download right now via retrieval.bandcamp.com
Sleep Cycle by Retrieval
The albums opener bounds into the sonic arena in a rush of percussion and hazy reverberation. ‘Away’ soars through the ether on waves of turbulent guitar and throbbing bass frequencies, deftly circumnavigating impressive dual vocalisations. Up next, my favourite track, ‘Sleep Cycle’ screams into audible range with it’s soaring guitar signatures enveloping fragile vocalisations as it’s steady almost metronomic drum patterns keep everything strapped down. Intricate chord structures make way for catchy hook laden chorus changes allowing haunting vocal tracks to shimmer and undulate through layers of mesmerising production whilst ‘Calling’ floats effortlessly on a slow melodic frequency laden guitar progression accompanied by those stunning vocal tracks and an explosive percussive swagger. ‘Waves’ opening bars tremble on crisp acoustic frequencies before the track explodes into a melee of hazy instrumentation that is absolutely drenched in stunning reverb. Slow and ambling drum patterns guide this soundscape through meandering psychedelic impressions as it’s ghost like vocalisations float along in close proximity, rising and falling with every single chord change wrapped in luscious lines of lead guitar and the constant twang of acoustic vibrations.
‘Costal Life’ swirls into earshot on atmospheric samples, subtle fret noise and wavy instrumentation before ‘Bones’ erupts into a cloud of fuzzy splendour as it’s lumbering vocal tracks cut a v-shaped wedge into a massive wall of beautiful noise. Lead guitars wail as bass frequencies throb, collectively rocking on a bedrock of heady noise, synth and precision drum tracking. Up next, ‘In The Frame’ is a noisy modern day shoegazing beast with powerful guitars and post-metal like vocal tracks whilst ‘Shut Down’ loops and arcs through massive swathes of stunning reverb as it’s wispy vocalisations magically intertwine with bass frequencies, soaring lead guitar, bubbling synth swells and beautifully atmospheric production. The albums penultimate piece entitled ‘Luna’ is steeped in an ambient hue with subtle sonic reflections that swirl momentarily through layers of tumbling psychedelia before noisy guitars, plodding bass progressions and pounding hi-hat heavy percussion take over, dragging the track kicking and screaming into a melding of post-rock or post-metal with a dollop of soaring shoegaze for good measure. It’s all very confusing instrumentally but deeply satisfying all the same. The album closes out with ‘Lessons’, a droning malicious entity filled with noisy guitars and overfed pedal boards. Melodic vocal lines twist themselves around fuzz filled frequencies as hazy production swallows up any chord changes crazy enough to pop their head over the sonic parapet. Again there is a definite post-rock edge to this track as it undulates through the ether on an atmospheric and percussion-less voyage. A fitting end to a rather interesting album.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
by Primal Music
Toronto based cinematic psych/kraut inspired post-rock trio 'Datura Daydream' have unleashed the latest single and it's accompanying video 'Sea Six' to be lifted from their brilliant new album 'THE LICK IS IN THE LISP'. The band are made up of Kevin Robert Fong - vocal/guitar, David Larocque - bass & Turner Roscoe Wigginton - drums and their latest single is a heady sonic brew filled with a metronomic krautrock hued percussive attack, swirling psych induced guitars, hazy vocalisations and beautifully melodic throbbing bass frequencies. 'THE LICK IS IN THE LISP' is available to buy/download right now from daturadaydream.bandcamp.com
Bless Your Heart by In Light Of
Writing and recording music over the internet is a modern phenomena that has helped the development of todays worldwide underground music scene and in turn has brought some very important musicians together to create some stunning musical soundscapes. I for one am a firm advocate of this method of music production and I personally feel that its aiding in the resurgence of many of the smaller untapped music genres swirling around within the underground scene. Ambient/post-rock/electronic duo 'In Light Of' have self-released their debut single entitled 'Bless Your Heart', lifted off their forthcoming debut EP entitled 'Little Treasures', whilst living in different cities altogether. In their own words - "Jason hired Sandy to join his music licensing company. Starting as colleagues they quickly bonded over a shared appetite for the kind of boundless sonic exploration found in post-rock (and the like) songwriting. But it wasn’t until Sandy moved five hours away that a musical project was first discussed".
What they have collectively created though, is a magnificently atmospheric slice of post-rock that is delectably infused with stunning reverberation & underscored with beautifully ambient textures that effortlessly build and surge into a raging cacophony of beautiful noise. God bless the power of the internet!
RELEASE: Geisha EP
RELEASE DATE: 29/04/15
RECORD COMPANY: Unsigned
Italy is a hotbed of brilliantly emotive, post punk fuelled, droning shoegaze & dreampop bands these days and ‘The Primal Music Blog’ has reviewed many of them before. From Milan to Napoli, Rome to Modena we are big supporters of the Italian ‘Scene That Celebrates Itself' or ‘Italiogaze’ as the scensters are calling it these days. This week we were introduced to yet another immense musical outfit based in Italy. ‘Arirang’ were born in Milan and are made up of Marco Mercuzio P - Guitars / Vocals, Francesco M - Bass & Giacomo C on Drums. Their debut EP release entitled ‘Geisha’ was officially announced to the masses back in April 2015 and is a truly magnificent collection of post rock inspired soundscapes intertwined with stunningly emotive cinematic shoegaze that is at times interspersed with post punk inspired vocal arrangements that will leave you truly amazed. The musicianship alone on this 5 track release is simply stunning!
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The EP opens up with beautifully arranged ‘Humming Rigmaroles’. This is a slice of cinematic post rock in its purest form. Stunning reverb infused vocals sit on top of an enticing drum arrangement & lead you into its explosive core. This track is full of musical peaks & troughs and it will take you on an unbelievable sonic journey. Stunning!
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Track 2 ‘Mantrabox’ begins with full on rock god connotations. Reminiscent in parts to ‘God Is An Astronaut’ with its explosive guitar arrangements and post rock infused progressions. The reverb fuelled vocal arrangement is simply addictive and leaves you wanting more. There’s a subtle hint of programmed drums running through this tracks spine but this only enhances the overall sound. Check it out:
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Track 3 is another cinematic soundscape wonder! ‘Under The Mount’ begins on a slower curve than the previous 2 tracks but don’t be fooled. This track opens up into an instrumental shoegazing masterclass as waves & waves of emotive walls of reverb drenched guitars wash over you and scoop you up with their many layers of immense goodness until it breaks and gently places back onto terra firma. I am amazed at the level of musicianship that Arirang are expressing on this track. It is simply sublime! Bravo!
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Track 4 - 'Oh Whale', is a slow burner. Ethereal vocals float on top of a steady but sparse percussion arrangement & intoxicating guitar lines until it erupts into a full on post rock gem. ‘Arirang’ have a cunning knack of bringing their listeners on a journey of musical discovery with the ebb & flow of their musical soundscapes. The programmed drum patterns returns mid way through the track but again it adds to the overall sound. This is yet another beautiful track of immense proportions & fans of emotive post rock will instantly fall in love with it. Stunning! Check it out:
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The closing track on this impressive release from Milan based ‘Arirang’ is a whopping 12 minutes plus of post punk infused vocal arrangements, droning sounds, pounding drums & swirling guitars. 6 minutes in and silence . . . . . . only to build into a maelstrom of instrumental shoegaze fuelled swirling guitars & pounding drums of immense proportions. A fitting end to a truly epic release.
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Del Chaney has spent the last two years not only fronting popular Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the Unsigned or Small Independent Label based Shoegaze Dream Pop Post-Punk & Post-Rock genre’s of music from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. 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 DATE: 29/06/15
RECORD COMPANY: Morningside Young Team Records
In the realm of instrumental shoegaze noise-rock, psych & post-rock it is the ability of the musician and or musicians to collectively carry a project to its finality thats the most important overriding factor. These modern day creators of psychedelic gazing are tasked with the job of carefully enticing listeners into their world by virtue of a sonic journey through many layers of infectious mind bending tone & shape and on into a blissful arena of sound. Musicians need to be masters of their craft & commit to enthralling listeners with their collective creative abilities in order to achieve their fans adoration. One such band have continued to impress not only me but the vast majority of the underground shoegaze, noise-rock, psych & post-rock world with their stunning musical soundscapes & their collective ability to bring listeners to their music on a psychedelic rollercoaster ride through waves & waves of addictive shoegazing goodness.
From their earliest creations Edinburgh based sound gazers 'Wozniak' have produced mind numbing music of brilliant shimmering proportions. 'Wozniaks' first release 'MFMB / New Hampshire' was a tiny crack in the surrounding framework that encompasses their musical world but what it did was to allow us to briefly peek inside. Listening to it let us collectively (as music fans first & foremost) sample a small sliver of their psychedelic might. It wasn't until the release of their immense EP 'Pikes Peak' that they broke the mould & unleashed a torrent of beautifully inspired shoegaze & noisey post rock infused cinematic sounds into the atmosphere that are so good they actually had the ability to sweep up this listener & carry him on an awe inspiring wave of shimmering musical brilliance.
After releasing the brilliant explosive single 'Five Star' back in November 2014 as a follow up to the mighty 'Pikes Peak' the band have released another stunning collection of tracks on Morningside Young Team Records aptly named - 'Auster'. The EP takes its name from the Roman God of the south wind, and reflects the elemental forces at work on Auster’s four stunning tracks. With its swirling snarl of guitars, dark, dirty bass tones and tom-heavy drums, the EP builds on 'Wozniak’s' previous releases revealing sophisticated sounds and songs that reveal themselves over repeated listens. 'Auster’s' layers of shoegaze sounds are underpinned by a noise-rock intensity and the expansive structures of post-rock bringing to mind comparisons with Slowdive and Mogwai.
This latest release opens up with the rather beautiful 'Snow Effect'. Glimmering guitars, addictively layered lead progressions, fuzzed out intricate bass lines, the steading presence of John Sinclair on drums mixed with that absolutely stunning standout vocal performance from Sarah Cuthbert-Kerr makes this track shimmer. As opening tracks go this has to be one of the best that I've heard this year. 'Snow Effect' has the ability to tell a story through the medium of music. Its chorus alone will shake up your memories & have you dreaming of the heady sunny days gone by. This is an absolutely stunning first track!
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The opening salvos of 'Wings Of Pegasus' charge into the musical atmosphere & instantly bring you back down to earth with its full on instrumental noise-rock swagger accompanied by that ( a- typical of Wozniak ) swirling maelstrom of guitars courtesy of both Simon & Sarah's penchant for guitar effect pedals & their ability to craft wondrous sounds from them! This is an addictively repetitive monster of a track that belongs on an early Death In Vegas mixtape & should in my opinion be remixed for the dance floor at some stage further down the road.
Next up on this immense release is another instrumental masterpiece - 'Gospel Of Infinity' is a call to arms. It builds from its very first repetitive chord progression whilst sitting on top of Johns Sinclair's rolling drum pattern & intertwining with yet another addictive bass line courtesy of the brilliant James Urquhart until the band eventually explode in unison as one swirling singular mass of gazing noisy sound waves.
The closing track on 'Auster' is simply EPIC. 'Hester & Zelda' is eight minutes plus of pure joy. Its cinematic beginnings are steeped with post-rock tendencies but don't be fooled. Wozniak refuse to be tamed within any genre specific borders. They unleash a full on sonic assault on your senses that will have you on the one hand gazing at your shoes immersed in a beautiful swirling mass of sound & on the other I can guarantee you will spend your time being absolutely amazed at this tracks post-rock infused glory. A truly wonderful track by a band who are not afraid to experiment by beating & bending sound until its moulded into their preferred shape. Stunning!
If creating & releasing music can be classed as a continuous progression with each step a betterment of yourself as a musician or as a collective of musicians then Wozniak have made a serious leap up the musical ladder with this latest EP release. What 'Auster' shows is that this band are one with their music & that they have the ability to create serious waves in todays underground musical landscape. I firmly believe that they have (as a collective) raised the musical bar for others to see clearly. This is a bold statement of intent from a band that I have a lot of time for & who I know have a lot more to give to us paltry music fans going forward. This EP is a must have for any serious music fan reading this (who like me) love their music on the shadier side of noisy post-rock but with that full on atmospheric shoegaze wall of sound.
It is my belief that the sounds 'Wozniak' are creating today will be influencing new bands for years to come.
Next up a full album release .......... & I can't wait.
Del Chaney has spent the last three years not only fronting popular Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the Unsigned or Small Independent Label based Shoegaze Dream Pop Post-Punk & Post-Rock genre’s of music from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog - The Primal Music Blog. 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.