New music for your ears including Art of Sleeping, the Brian Emo, Crossfaith, the Demon Parade, Tijuana Cartel & more!
MICACHU & THE SHAPES – OH BABY (ROUGH TRADE / REMOTE CONTROL)
Micachu & The Shapes’ return, three years after the release of their last record Never, is almost an accident: the trio of friends decided to rehearse in an East London studio, and found themselves immersed into an hours-long jam. Drummer Marc Pell had an Edirol field recorder in hand, and unbeknownst to his bandmates, recorded the whole session; Pell, Mica Levi, and Raisa Khan were so enamored of those off-the-cuff audio experiments that they became the underpinnings of a new record.
TIJUANA CARTEL – LOST MY HEAD (INDEPENDENT)
As the corner stone of Australia’s ‘east meets west’ electronic scene, Tijuana Cartel have a knack for blending layers of rich, intricate atmospheric soundscapes with laid back rhythms and luscious vocals to form an electronic beats tapestry that will cut through to your very soul. Simply put, there isn’t another band doing what they do!
‘Lost My Head’, the first single to be released off the band’s upcoming album “Psychedelicatessen” has the band working with their favourite producer Chris Moore, one of the engineers behind TV on the Radio and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Wanting to re-invent their sound somewhat and draw on some of their more obscure influences, the band found themselves listening to early Stone Roses, wondering what would happen if they mashed some of their own sounds with the ideas of theirs. This is the first track that the band has used a live drummer, also mixing in a slide guitar with a 12 string Oud – a song that will hit well when played live.
THE DEMON PARADE – MY LIFE IN PIECES (INDEPENDENT)
Skulking around Melbourne as the pied pipers of an extended family of psychedelic garage bands setting the world on fire, The Demon Parade are ready to set forth from their recording cave. Blinking in the weak winter sun they are about to do what they do best; head out on their first headline Australian tour in ages on the back on a new EP release.
Eschewing the dense and layered production of their previous output, the band have deliberately kept the knob twiddling behind the studio desk to a minimum, instead churning out their trademark psychedelic jams in a raw and insistent fashion. With a hat tip to the 13th Floor Elevators and The Pretty Things, not to mention the trippy peace pipes of H.P. Lovecraft, the band are set to put the van in to first gear as they roar out of the garage on their first tour of the year.
THE BRIAN EMO – SUSHI BOY
Keeping relatively quiet from the music media, the Brian Emo have played a few underground shows along the East Coast of Australia supporting friends' bands and spreading their ridicolously great band name to the people. Described as, "soulful, flacid-rock" - even in 2015 bands continue to carve niche musical genres into the already obese market - the Brian Emo somehow live up to that title with their debut offering, 'Sushi Boy'.
The song is distant and withdrawn in the same way Salvadarlings deliver their mushroom psych in a dystopian and fragmented formula - sounding like the band are a little too far away from any microphones. That's not to say it's a bad thing - what the Brian Emo do to draw back their convictions, the listener is clawing for more. 'Sushi Boy' teaches you to focus more on the background of the music, rather than the foreground.
DARREN MIDDLETON – OUR ROAD (DZRECORDS / MGM)
Darren Middleton is best known for his contributions to the legacy of Australian music as the guitarist in iconic Brisbane band Powderfinger who took the nation by storm dominating the Australian charts from their humble beginnings in 1992, right up until their disbanding in 2010. Now, Middleton steps out solo once again, announcing release of his upcoming album “Splinters”, a follow up to his 2013 full length debut solo album “Translations”.
‘Our Road’ is a song simply inspired by travel, going on a new journey to new places or with someone new. The song has taken many twists itself in its sonic delivery, arriving finally as an amalgamation of sharp muted guitar riffs matched with a driving drum line and Middleton’s signature melodic guitar solos.
ART OF SLEEPING – BLEEDING OUT (DEW PROCESS)
Art Of Sleeping are quickly turning into one of the hardest working young bands in Australia, after their sold out ‘Crazy’ show dates in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane earlier in 2015, the five-piece have only just wrapped up their ‘Voodoo’ tour, their biggest national headline tour to date which saw them play to packed out audiences within nine dates and six states across the country. In just over a weeks time the band will be heading up to Byron Bay to perform at the GW McLennan Tent at Splendour In The Grass on Saturday 25th July.
YOUTH LAGOON – THE KNOWER (FAT POSSUM)
Often perceived as a recluse (his first LP is called “The Year of Hibernation,” after all), on “Savage Hills Ballroom” Youth Lagoon has fully opened himself to the world for the first time ever. The 10-track collection is his most ambitious, unguarded work to date, recorded in Bristol, UK and mixed/engineered by Ali Chant (PJ Harvey, Gravenhurst).
This sense of gilded rebirth floods the instrumentation on “Savage Hills Ballroom’ – Power’s vocals are largely unadorned and his pop-conscious electronics reach new feats of precision. Meanwhile the lyrics explore darker territory. ‘Kerry’ is the story of Powers' revered uncle whose drug addiction led him to running from the law for most of his adult life, while ‘Highway Patrol Stun Gun’ imagines Biblical end-times through the lens of the recent cases of police brutality.
MAJOR LEAGUES – SOMEONE SOMETIME (POPFRENZY)
Brisbane garage-pop four-piece Major Leagues have proudly unveiled ‘Someone Sometime’ - the first single from their forthcoming sophomore EP. The track coincides with the band signing to Sydney-based Popfrenzy Records, who have released records in Australia for the likes of Alvvays, Jonathan Boulet and Best Coast.
‘Someone Sometime’ was recorded in Brisbane at Plutonium Studios by local producer/engineer Miro Mackie, and mixed in Brooklyn by Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Blouse member, Jacob Portrait.
CROSSFAITH – XENO (UNFD)
‘Xeno’ has a story of hope, failure, love, betrayal and death woven into its fabric so skillfully it's impossible to tell where truth ends and fiction begins. It's both an escape from and an examination of reality that reveals more truths the further it delves.
Produced by Josh Wilbur (Avenged Sevenfold, Lamb Of God, Hatebreed) and mastered by Ted Jensen, Xeno takes the groundwork laid by 2013's Apocolyze and 2012's “Zion EP” as well as the band's vast touring history and catapults them into a whole new league. Xeno is an artistic endeavour like few others, with roots in manga, anime and the furthest reaches of its creators' minds. Frontman Kenta 'Ken' Koie, guitarist Kazuki Takemura, bassist Hiroki 'Hiro' Ikegawa, keyboardist Terufumi 'Teru' Tamano and drummer Tatsuya Amano are, quite simply, operating on a different level.
GORDI – CAN WE WORK IT OUT (INDEPENDENT)
On the conception of the song, Gordi recalls, "I originally wrote the song on a mandolin a while ago when I couldn't sleep one night. I sat up in bed and grabbed the closest instrument and pressed the record button on my iPhone. The song is about trying to uncomplicated the things we complicate."