Saturday, 26 February 2011

The Vaccines - Not Long Now

It's not long now until the debut album is out from The Vaccines. You may remember me posting If You Wanna back in August, well that's now their new single but you can download Wrecking Bar (ra ra ra) and Blow It Up and then get across to and pre-order their album for £6.99.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Frankie and the Heartstrings - Debut Album

So I'm sure you're all hungry for more music and Frankie and the Heartstrings can satisfy that hunger as their debut album is out this week. It means I've ordered another album as part of my New Year Resolution. As it's only £4.99 from it was a pretty easy decision to make.

If you need more convincing you can stream Ungrateful below oh and if you hadn't worked it out yet, the debut album is called Hunger.

Ungrateful by Frankie and the Heartstrongs
Supplied by radarmaker

I'm the only person sticking to their New Year Resolution, I wonder how Dancing Bear is getting on with his? Bet there's not a lot of whisky drinking going on in Cuba...

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Where Are They Now

First of all let me say that I've been meaning to write this post for months, I've wanted to do a "where are they now" style post as I find them great to read on other people's blogs. So what I've decided to do is look back at one of earliest posts entitled If I Didn't Have The Internet I Wouldn't Be In To Them (and they know so...) and go through the bands on there to see what they're up to now.

The Whip
After hearing their fantastic track Trash, which has now had 500k listens on MySpace, I bought the album. A fantastic album it is too and not just a one hit wonder coffee coaster that I expected. Since then the track has been used in a Coors Light advert and in the background on a lot of TV programmes. According to their Twitter feed they have just finished the new album but at the moment there doesn't seem to be any new material to listen to.

The Sunshine Underground
Since the post they have released a second album which was alright, I was listening to it the other day and while it's no masterpiece it's a solid second album. On the band's blog they say they've already got going with some new material and promise there will be "no 4 year gap" this time. I hope so. I'm still hoping to catch them live at some point.

The Dead 60's
The Dead 60s are sadly no more. Their second album "Time To Take Sides" was unreleased in the UK. I still find this a bit bizarre as I picked it up a few copies in Fop for £1 each back in '08 or '09. This suggests to me that they split on the eve of its release. Either the record company thought it was going to flop or the band couldn't face touring to promote it. Either way it's a shame as the albums not too bad, with lead single Stand Up a particular favourite of mine. You can read their farewell letter on their MySpace and according to Wikipedia the band, minus lead singer Matt MacManamon, are in a new female fronted band The Venus Fury.

Tiny Dancers
Quite poppy and actually a really good album. Quite a disappointment when I found out they'd split. I mentioned it on this blog at the time. Where they promised not to be the "Joey" to Tiny Dancers' "Friends". Well as Matt Le Blanc seems to have hit another good series with Episodes you've certainly achieved that. I can't find any information about them, if you're out there guys, get in touch.

The National
The National have just had their best year ever I'm guessing as their 5th album High Velvet was a great success, critically anyway. It was voted number 8 in Q Magazine's end of year best of album list (I've still not bought the magazine since they sold out and had an interview with George Galloway in it). In my original post had the excellent song Fake Empire in it and yet the album it was taken from, Boxer, disappointed me. High Velvet is better but still not quite my cup of tea. They are touring mainland Europe in 2011 along with some more far flung places such as Japan and the American continent.

Team9 AKA Neil Mason has been "destroying shit since 1999" and spends most of his time now as The Found Sound Orchestra and he has a project on his hands. He is going to make a new track each week and make it available for download. That's some feat and in his own words quality control will take a hit at times but he quite rightfully points out that at the end of the year he should have enough quality for an album. It's still very much down the lines of mashing up songs and putting them together just like the awesome Money Song I posted originally.

One of the reasons I am writing this post is because of a Ghosts' track. The World Is Outside describes how the last Monday in January is apparently the worst day of the year. Usually that's because it's cold, dark and another whole week until pay day. Of course that's not the case this year as it's the last day of the month but you get the idea. Anyway, Ghosts debut album which the above song is the title track, was released in 2007 and was a good piano / indie pop effort. They were even in the BBC's sound of 2007 list. I seem to remember their single was experimented with as downloads had just come in. The physical copy and digital version were released weeks apart and thus the band didn't get very high in the charts. In April '08 the band went to Sweden to record a new album but it was never released.

The Virgins
What a song Rich Girls was. In fact I crave for the days where I can come across another Rich Girls or another Trash by The Whip come to that. According to Wikipedia the band are in the process of writing their second album but a bit more digging suggests they are now more and some of the "casualties from the now defunct band" have formed The Rassle and you can download their EP for free from their web site. I recommend you get over there quick smart and download. It's pretty catchy stuff, try to ignore how much Wild Ones sounds like I Fought The Law.

British India
I'm sure when I first came across this band I read that they were "Australia's Arctic Monkeys". Looking back I can see the comparison to Arctic Monkeys' first album but it's not how I would refer to them. They're a proper rock band and they've certainly been busy since I got their album back in '08. Guillotine was released in '07 and they have released two albums since then. Unlike a lot of rock bands they haven't turned down the volume which is refreshing. British India were even in the UK at the end of last year.

Los Campesinos!
You! Me! Dancing! was a great track, you remember it don't you? Well I start tapping my feet just thinking of the track. Los Campesinos! are still around and producing music. Their web site has a real "get in touch/involved vibe" where you can download tracks, email the band and read their blog which they run like 'normal' people. Their tracks remind me of Switches.

The Aliens
The Aliens were born out of Beta Band and released two albums but it appears that mental illness problems that plagued the band (and Beta Band) took their toll. There doesn't appear to be any trace of them yet Steve Mason their band mate from Beta Band has released new solo material.

Well I shouldn't really need to tell you what they are up to now following my post the other week but in case you can't be arsed to read it, they've got a new album out soon.

Pete & The Pirates
I saw them live at the floating gig venue that is Thekla in Bristol a few years back and they looked young, played pop and entertained. Now they appear to have grown up and perhaps have put their pop days behind them. Download new track Winter 1 for free and their new album is due out in May.

The Paper Cranes
The Paper Cranes promised much at the start with the excellent I'll Love You Until My Veins Explode but the Canadians have never really hit those heights again sadly. They have released two albums, the last of which was Halcyon Days out in 2009.

White Lies
White Lies are stars and have the talent to back it up. Their debut album To Lose My Life was fantastic from start to finish, tracks Death and Unfinished Business are still in my top 10 played songs on iTunes and I could still listen to them twice a day. Ritual their recently released second album is still to win me over but I'm certainly willing to give this band a few more listens.

What's Goyte been up to?
"Over the last year and a half I've been helping the lovely Tash Parker with the recording of her debut album Waking Up. I sang on some songs, played drums and percussion and produced a couple of songs. Tash is releasing the record independently on her own label Little Buildings and I reckon it's an absolute gem"

The Electric Soft Parade
I really enjoyed their debut album back in 2002, perhaps even the album of the year for me but sadly they've never managed to match it. They've released two albums since plus as part of the band Brakes they've released three studio albums. I bought Brakes' first album but never got in to it, Colin Murray claimed that Brakes' second album The Beautific Visions was the best album in 2006. The track I posted in 2008 was taken from their third and most recent album but apparently there might be a new album for 2011 as they appeared on stage in December hinting new material was on its way. So there's No Need To Be Downhearted.

The song I posted, It's Never Been Like That, was the catchy title track taken from their 2006 album. It was followed up in 2009 with Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. Free song 1901 never hit the mark with me but it and the album was well received by critics and it was their most successful album, winning a Grammy, whatever that is. So where are they now? Well they've recorded the soundtrack for Somewhere, a film written and directed by Sofia Coppola, you can catch the trailer here which has their music in it.

Vampire Weekend
At the time I posted the song I don't think Vampire Weekend were very big, now they're two albums in and going strong. They're still making music with an African feel and their album from last year, Contra, is growing on me.

The Courteeners
Their debut album St Jude was fantastic, my album of the year in fact and a real guitar band, rock n roll affair. The album won The Guardian's First Album Award, beating Glasvegas amongst others. The follow up to that album was released two years later in 2010 but didn't reach the same heights despite being called Falcon. Saying that it wasn't far off, it just had the feel of an album that was a little bit rushed, often the case with a second album where the record label is pushing for it's release. They also released an EP at the end of last year containing 5 tracks, two off the album, a cover and two new tracks. This year they've only got two festival style gigs scheduled so far, perhaps they're going to be holed up writing new material. They certainly seem to produce a lot, Falcon came with a special edition 2nd CD with tracks that didn't quite make the album.

The best part of doing this Where Are They Now post? Finding this on Gotye's web site "my current favourite palindrome- Go hang a salami, I'm a lasagna hog" You're a lasagna hog...

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

The Pigeon Detectives New Material

It's been a while since The Pigeon Detectives released some new material, this after they released their first two albums within 12 months. It's not unsurprising then that the new material sounds a bit different. A different pace, an electronic influence but not a move away from Matt singing about women. Listen to the new track below along with a song off the previous two albums. The new album, Up, Guards and at 'em is out in April (I think) and they're on tour in March and April, tickets go on sale on Friday. The new single, Done In Secret is out 28th March.

Latest tracks by The Pigeon Detectives