ALBUM: Piney Gir – ‘You Are Here’

Charged by a ’60s reminiscent dreamscape energy grounded in the roots of art rock’s demeanour, Piney Gir demands your undivided attention. Known for her eclectic style ranging from alt-folk to retro pop, she takes us to a new exploratory world in her new album You Are Here.

Opening the record with striking spikes contrasted by distances, ‘Admiral Fleets’ serves as the ideal intro track, feeding us whispers of sounds that are to come as the record continues. The pounding drums and intriguing vocal melodies are immediate hooks that keep listeners pulled along for the album’s duration. With moments of pure boldness and others of soft vulnerability, what stays constant is the resilient rhythmic drive of these songs. Even in the quietest moments of You Are Here, a dynamic bass line, groovy keys and retro-sounding guitar tones carry its stories to a dance floor for your feet. 

In songs like ‘Little Cop’ and ‘Peanut Butter Malt Shop Heartthrob’, both lyrically and instrumentally, the wit of the arrangements is floating in the sky where “…sherbet umbrellas will sing for us.” It’s almost impossible to visualize this record without images of candy skies and a breeze of a sunny day. Even ‘Variety Show’, a song asking for someone’s belief in love, has an optimistic feeling reminiscent of the folky tones of Angus & Julia Stone. Regardless of subject matter, You Are Here continues to lift. 

Psychedelic guitar riffs as in the outro of ‘We’ll Always Have Paris’ grounds the emotional experience of the record and ties it to the human infatuation with nostalgia. With both memories of pure bliss and others of bittersweetness, Piney Gir serves a wide palette of reflection and celebration. Brass and string arrangements coupled with vocal duets, provide the sense of a collective experience to the stories told, and make for a brilliantly paced record that is sure to captivate. You Are Here keeps your head in the clouds.

You Are Here is out 1st November via STRS Records. And we can’t wait for Piney Gir to headline for us at The Finsbury in the new year, on 14th February 2020!

Jillian Goyeau

LISTEN: LUNIR – ‘Cubs’

Having formed in Edinburgh back in 2015, Becky Sikasa and David Scobie – aka LUNIR – have since received praise from the likes of Vic Galloway on BBC Radio Scotland and Amazing Radio’s Jim Gellatly, and are now ready to grace our ears with their uplifting new single.

Inspired by childhood memories of feeling carefree, ‘Cubs’ oozes an infectious chilled out groove as the luscious, sweeping vocals of Sikasa flow. Filled with sparkling harmonies and vibrant, euphoric vibes, it’s guaranteed to warm the coldest of hearts this Autumn.

 

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Track Of The Day: DUCK – ‘Sirens’

Having wowed us at The Finsbury with their playful energy on more than one occasion, Leeds/Sheffield band DUCK are firm favourites here at Get In Her Ears, and now – following following joyous offerings such as 2017’s ‘Stereo’ and this year’s ‘R*ck St*r’, they’re back with a poignant new single.

Propelled by ’80s infused whirring hooks and intense pounding beats, ‘Sirens’ oozes jarring sounds to reflect its pertinent subject matter. A song about violence and victim blaming, as the impassioned vocals of front woman Sarah blast out an affecting lyrical commentary – “If you could just sew your mouth shut/ Everything would be alright/ You set him off again/ You and your big mouth” – an eerily stirring soundscape is created; one that will stick in your ears, and in your mind, at a time when these issues need addressing more than ever.

Listen to ‘Sirens’ via Bandcamp now:

 

‘Sirens’ is taken from DUCK’s upcoming new album There Are No Normal Conversations Any More, out later this year on Hell Hath No Fury Records. And you can catch DUCK live for the single launch on 12th October at Wharf Chambers, Leeds.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Track Of The Day: Sui Zhen – ‘Being A Woman’

Following recent captivating singles ‘Perfect Place’ and ‘Matsudo City Life’, Melbourne experimental pop artist Sui Zhen is back with a poignant new offering.

Propelled by throbbing beats and sparkling hooks, ‘Being A Woman’ showcases Zhen’s majestic, sweeping vocals in a beautifully layered effervescent soundscape that particularly resonates. As Zhen sings “… being a woman you have to hold yourself before you hold someone else”, she speaks to anyone feeling drained by the world; anyone who’s feeling insufficient at not being able to fully support others because they’ve exhausted themselves trying. She speaks to anyone who needs to recognise the importance of self care and making time for yourself before being able to help others. A heartfelt and stirring ode to womanhood, ‘Being A Woman’ is an empowering and impassioned slice of twinkling alt pop that may be just what you need to hear today to pick yourself up and keep going.

Of the track, Sui Zhen explains:

The sense of duty, obligation and function that comes with living in a female body is both heavy and powerful. It takes so much strength to live a life as a woman.”

Losing, Linda, the new album from Sui Zhen, is out now via Cascine.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Agnieszka Chabros

LISTEN: Field Music – ‘Only In A Man’s World’

With their upcoming new album, Making A New World, the North East’s finest musical collective offer a nineteen track song cycle about the after-effects of the First World War. However, Field Music‘s new release isn’t about war and it is not, in any traditional sense, an album about remembrance. There are songs here about air traffic control and gender reassignment surgery. There are songs about Tiananmen Square and about ultrasound. There are even songs about Becontree Housing Estate and, as with their latest single, sanitary pads.

Tackling a poignant and relevant subject, ‘Only In A Man’s World’ is filled with whirring synths and funk-fused hooks, as Field Music’s trademark sweeping harmonies and distinctive jangly uplifting energy flows. Addressing how little the marketing of sanitary products has changed in the last hundred years, and the unfair taxation of what is an essential item for half the population, as front man David Brewis implores “Why should a woman feel ashamed…?”, it offers a refreshing and musically rich insight into our unfair society.

Of the track, Brewis explains:

I found myself researching the development of sanitary pads… and was surprised at how little the advertising material has changed in a hundred years. It’s still, ‘Hey Ladies! Let’s not mention it too loudly but here is the perfect product to keep you feeling normal WHILE THE DISGUSTING, DIRTY THING HAPPENS’. And you realise that it’s a kind of madness that a monthly occurrence for billions of women – something absolutely necessary for the survival of humanity – is seen as shameful or dirty – and is taxed MORE than razor blades?! At every stage of making this song, I had to ask myself, am I allowed to do this? Is it okay to do this? And I cringed in the next room when I first showed it to my wife. But I think confronting my own embarrassment is a pretty fundamental part of what the song is about.”

So, thank you Field Music for putting such an important subject to such marvellous music.

Making A New World, the upcoming album from Field Music, is out 10th January via Memphis Industries. Pre-order here.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

 

ALBUM: Dearly Beloved – ‘Times Square Discount’

Hailing from Toronto, CA – the Great White North – Dearly Beloved have made their welcome return with their sixth studio album, Times Square Discount; ten tracks of thunderous, anthemic rock and roll.

Dearly Beloved have been crafting weird, compelling melodies for over a decade  – from their 2006 debut You Are the Jaguar to 2016’s Admission. Times Square Discount is no different. Opening with lead single, ‘Race To The Bottom’, the hive mind of vocalist/bassist Rob Higgins and vocalist/percussionist Niva Chow collectively pay tribute to their grandmothers; immigrants to Canada that ran small businesses when Higgins and Chow were just teenagers.

Holding their middle fingers up, Higgins and Chow’s his and her vocals stress the importance of the passionate and dedicated labour force whose front lines are already being run off a cliff”, whilst melting your face off with their hook-laden alt-rock; the erosion of the immigrant dream told through distortion.

Both ‘Vacation’ and ‘LSD’ display Dearly Beloved’s pop sensibilities and experimental nature. Melding scuzzy, pounding bass guitar with sing-song quality vocals from “The Chairman Chow” herself. And before you know it, ‘Close Encounters’ and ‘The Conqueror’ have joined the creepshow with otherworldly riffs ripped straight out of a 1950s B movie.

‘Fuck The Banks’ is a pretty self explanatory track that leads to ‘New Versus’; an abrasive fusion of bass guitar and theremin soundscapes, complemented by soft, harmonised vocals, whereas ‘Dog Food Thumbs’ is propelled by raw energy and a pop aesthetic. And if you thought Times Square Discount couldn’t get any weirder, think again! Meet ‘Al P’, a professional panchinko player from Tokyo. His only form of communication? Catchphrases culled from Al Pacino movies.

Closing track, ‘Super Hero’ is experimental electro hip-hop featuring MC Maia; just one of the multiple collaborators featured on Times Square Discount; including  Dimitri Coats (OFF) who provides much of the guitar riffs, James Di Salvio (Bran Van 3000), Jordan Lawlor (M83), Wylie Hodgden (Chevy Metal) and Dave Catching (Eagles of Death Metal). 

By the conclusion of Times Square Discount, the loose conceptual framework has become obvious. This LP, as Higgins explains, is “a rabbit-hole record”, one that has collated experiences and knowledge Dearly Beloved have gained from the various cities they have visited through near-constant touring. “Like the way Kubrick made films… Gather shit, learn shit.”

Recorded at Dave Grohl’s Studio 606, Dave Catching’s Rancho De La Luna, and Dearly Beloved’s own home studio in Toronto, Times Square Discount is a wonderfully chaotically crafted record, tempered with love to create an impressive, cohesive whole. Just like Stanley Kubrick’s filmmaking process.

Times Square Discount is out 25th October via Future Shocks Records. Catch Dearly Beloved live on the rest of their UK tour with Sebadoh:

1st October – Bristol, @ Fleece
2nd October –
Birmingham, @ O2 Academy 2
3rd October –
Leeds, @ Brudenell
4th October –
Glasgow, @ Broadcast
5th October –
Manchester, @ O2 Academy 2

Ken Wynne
@Ken_Wynne