Friday, 29 April 2016

3WTM April 2016 Playlist

The three of us (Chris, Neil and John) chose five songs that we've been enjoying and share them for each other and readers to enjoy. Comments always welcome as to which ones you've enjoyed and which ones you haven't, reasons why not compulsory. This month's playlist as always is available to stream. Check it out at Apple or Spotify.

Bend with the Wind – Exmagician – Scan the Blue

I think Belfast duo Exmagician are fairly new to the scene, and I’ve really enjoyed listening to the album ‘Scan the Blue’. This particular track features an unusual time signature which is either 11/4 or alternating bars of 6/4 and 5/4 – see if you can keep track of the ‘11’ beats. Aside from that, it’s a great track too.

Far Away – Junip – The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Soundtrack)

You’ve guessed it – I heard this track whilst watching the aforementioned film. I really liked it and had to Shazam it. When it turned out to be a Swedish Folk-Rock outfit, it ticked several boxes on my list of things I seem to like. Looking into it now – I see that the singer is none other than José González. I did then download their latest album and it may have featured in one of my ‘Reviews with a View’ on Strava, but I didn’t like the songs as much as this one.

I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore – Lucy Dacus – No Burden

Another new artist from Richmond (the lack of further qualification probably signifies that it’s in London). A great track – I think which will be up both Neil and John’s streets. I’ve been wrong on that score before though. I can’t remember much more about the album though, but I imagine it’s much in the same vein.

Düsseldorf – Teleman – Brilliant Sanity

Another track from an album which featured on ‘Review with a View’. I have decided that I should have a rating system for how much a band sounds like either Franz Ferdinand, Semisonic, or The Velvet Underground as I have found myself often using these as reference points. Well this song would have a Franz score of 4/5 for the music and a Semi score of 4/5 for the vocal. Vocals and music get 1/5 as a Velvet score. This is my favourite track from their (second) album.

The Last Thing On My Mind – The Joy Formidable – Hitch

The online review I’ve just read of this album laments on how their third album fails to deliver on the promise built by the previous two, but having not heard the previous two, I’m in no position to be disappointed, and instead am very pleased with it. I’m a bit nervous about listening to their earlier stuff now.

John's choices:

Happy - Misty Miller

I'm never sure when I post songs whether everyone is aware of them and it's just me who has finally become aware of them. This song falls in to that category as it's so good surely other people know about it? Misty ticks so many boxes, she's from Wimbledon (my mate supports AFC Wimbledon), she came to prominence playing the ukulele (just like Neil) and she cites Velvet Underground as an influence (and we already know how much Chris likes them).

Trouble on Oxford Street - Skinny Lister

If the last track was one I thought Neil would like then this is the opposite but how could I not include it with lyrics like "It went off like Krakatoa, Like Rocky Balboa". A bit ska/folk like it reminds me of Parka who featured on this blog in the past. Released as a single last year it's taken from the six piece's second album. They're based in London.

No Flavour - Phobophobes

Another band from London and I've been enjoying this track over the past month or so.
I've been listening to this one for a while and I'm excited to share this psychedelic rock track from this band showing real promise. 

Rebel - Louis Berry

Found via Spotify's Discover feature, this soulful number is not by the first African American to practice law in a segregated city in Central Louisiana (you recognised the name too?). This is Louis from Liverpool and he's got quite a bit to say and quite a swagger. I've got a feeling we might here more from him.

Trust Me I'm A Genius - The Family Rain

I'm way too late to this party as this is a 2012 release from a band hailing from Bath. However I'm not proud or a music snob, if a songs got to be played, it's got to be played. This is one of those rock, stomping tracks.

Neil's Choices (words by John):

Woke up Hurting by Frightened Rabbit

This Scottish band originally from Selkirk still feel pretty fresh to me despite having been around since 2003. This track is taken from their 2016 album Painting of a Panic Attack

Under the Sun by DIIV

Formed in Brooklyn in 2011 DIIV are now on to their second album and this is one of four singles taken from the album.

Walk among the Cobras by Dan Sartain

Dan featued on the blog back in 2009 with Replacement Man and recently supported World Record Store Day with this released on 7".

Cockeyed Rabbit Wrapped in Plastic by Slug

Slug were formed in Sunderland in 2014 by Ian Black, former member of Field Music. Their EP is available to download now.

Jessica by NZCA Lines

NZCA Lines is the one man band Michael Lovett created as his alter ego. Formerly of a rock pop outfit he's taken a new direction with this manifestation. 

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Mid Month Bonus

A bonus playlist, what's going on? I've had some tracks going around and around in my "assessment" playlist for some time and as they weren't quite making the main playlist (because of familiarity not quality) I thought I'd throw them out there for other people to enjoy. Stream it on Spotify here. Update: and Apple Music.

Long Hair - Drowners

This is taken from the band's 2014 album and is a track I came across searching out new music on Spotify. With a Welsh lead and Americans making up the rest of the band it's got a good mix of musical influences - or so it feels anyway.

She Chose You - Marrow

This is the album opener from the Chicago band's 2015 album, The Gold Standard. They are essentially Kids These Days reincarnated - a band who released a couple of albums between 2009 and 2013.

Don't Fall - Chameleons

I've only discovered this band because of a friend asking me to go to their gig. They're the forerunners of sounds created by the likes of Editors and Interpol.

Buckle - We Are Scientists

The first of a few tracks that are from bands I've mentioned before. Not quite different enough to be on the monthly playlist but certainly worth sharing with you as they've had plenty of plays from me.

My Type - Saint Motel

Chris helped me hunt this track down after I'd heard it on an advert for a TV programme. Since then I've not been able to get away from it with it used on various commercials and constantly on my stereo.

Nothing But Love - James

The best song off the new album and a single to match the quality off the last album which was James at their best.

She Changes The Weather - Swim Deep

The second song to feature from this band and this album on the blog. A beautiful steady piano opening that grows in to itself.

The Great Defector - Bell X1

I've never really looked in to Bell X1 before despite seeing their name crop up all over the place. However this track came on my Spotify Discover playlist and I enjoyed it. Reminds me of Tom Petty. The band's name comes from the first plane to go supersonic and they are the band to have the most airplay in Ireland after U2,

Up & Up - Coldplay

They are known to their fans for having a really strong song as the last track on their album - Everything's Not Lost, Amsterdam and Til Kingdom Come certainly are. This is no exception and worth checking out if you've not heard it yet. Middle of the road they may be but they do it well.

Middle Of Nowhere - Hot Hot Heat

A great pop ditty from the band who brought you Bandages. I recently found out they are still going and have a track out called Kid Who Stays In The Picture. However it is this is a track from 2005 that I hadn't really taken note of that I've been enjoying. It didn't enjoy any success over here but having been used in a US programme, One Tree Hill it seems other people have taken note and it's had over 3 million plays on Spotify.

Upside Down & Inside Out - OK Go

I've happily put OK Go in the same pigeon hole as Hot Hot Heat which neither band appreciating that as OK Go are from Chicago originally and HHH are from Canada. I've been enjoying a few of OK Go's recent releases but this one is a bit more experimental and there's something about how he says 'freight train' that's got stuck in my head.

Free Stuff - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes

Another band that have featured on this blog more than once and won't need an introduction to some. As they were a band that came to prominence at about the same time this blog got going I've always had a soft spot for them. It was one of the few free CDs I got in the early days and that debut album was a corker. According to wikipedia Alex behind the band benefited from some seed money from Heath Ledger which I thought was interesting. This song was released this year. The other new track, No Love Like Yours is also worth checking out.

Last Night - The Sherlocks

If you like The Courteeners then there's a good chance you'll like this Sheffield band who've again featured on this blog before.

You Are Killing Me - The Dandy Warhols

A new track from a band I've been following since 1997, they always sit well next to OK Go and Hot Hot Heat. This track was released earlier this year.

Magnificent Time - Travis

I didn't know Travis had been back for a while, they released an album in 2013 it turns out. 3 Miles High the previous single to this got quite a bit of play on Radio 2 I'm told. I found it a bit drab but this is a bit more upbeat.