NEW TRACK: SKYND – ‘Elisa Lam’

Freakishly catchy: industrial duo SKYND‘s debut single ‘Elisa Lam’ is a mad medley of electronics and warped vocals. The track is named after the tragic death of Elisa Lam, whose demise at the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles in 2013 is still shrouded in mystery.

The track is accompanied by a haunting video (directed by TallyHo!) which depicts the mysterious events surrounding Elisa’s final moments. Whilst the context is undoubtedly morbid, SKYND’s treatment of the material is weirdly watchable.

The duo write songs about mystical, inexplicable and brutal criminal cases, which is a warped source of inspiration. Speaking of ‘Elisa Lam’ and their upcoming singles, SKYND have said: “Listening to these tracks, you should feel like you’re in a tiny room and the walls are closing in from all sides.” That’s definitely the case here. Watch the video below and follow SKYND on Facebook for more updates.

@KCBobCut
Kate Crudgington

Track Of The Day: Hilary Woods – ‘Prodigal Dog’

A mesmeric, gentle exploration of emotional claustrophobia: Hilary Woods‘ new single ‘Prodigal Dog’ is a disarming fusion of orchestral strings, understated synths, and hushed vocals. It’s the second track she’s shared from her upcoming debut album Colt, which is set to be released through the inimitable Sacred Bones on 8th June.

Based in Dublin, the multi-talented artist has released a monochrome video to accompany ‘Prodigal Dog’. Speaking of the visuals, Woods said: “I set out to make a video that was slightly claustrophobic, cyclical, predominantly black in colour, one that traced the internal feeling from where the song was written.” It’s this tender, seemingly uncomfortable context that makes the footage such a captivating watch.

Woods has described the songs on her debut album Colt as “a way to process and make sense of the everyday. A means to speak with inner voices, explore aloneness, and understand the complexities of desire.” With this in mind, we can’t wait to listen to the record, and to hear her exquisite pain live at St. Pancras Church on 11th June.

Watch the video for ‘Prodigal Dog’ below and follow Hilary Woods on Facebook for more updates.

Pre-order your copy of Colt from Sacred Bones here.

Hilary Woods UK 2018 Live Dates 
11th June – St Pancras Church, London UK
20th June – Meltdown Festival, London UK w/ Moon Duo
14th Sept – The Sugar Club, Dublin IRL

Photo credit: Joshua Wright

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Track Of The Day: Tigercats – ‘Candy’s Tailor’

Three years since the release of the critically-acclaimed Mysteries, Tigercats have returned with their much-anticipated third album Pig City.

Taken from the album is latest single ‘Candy’s Tailor’. Filled with twinkling, jangly melodies and uptempo, calypso-like beats, it flows with raw vocals and rich layers of sound, creating an utterly uplifting summer anthem.

Inspired by the band’s anger at the incessant gentrification of East London as developers close in on the studio they call home, Pig City offers a broadening of the band’s pop influences, expanding into highlife, afrobeat, and scuzzy West African psych.

 

Pig City is out now via Spanish label El Segell del Primavera. Catch Tigercats live at the following dates:

3rd June – Primavera Festival, Barcelona
23rd June – Not A Cult Festival, Malvern
29th July – Indietracks Festival, Derbyshire

Mari Lane
@marimindles

ALBUM: Colour Me Wednesday – ‘Counting Pennies In The Afterlife’

To escape from the remnants of Royal Wedding fever in the air, there is nothing better you could do than listen to the new album from DIY band, Colour Me Wednesday, fronted by the Doveton sisters (Jen on vocals, Harriet on guitar). Counting Pennies In The Afterlife, their second album, showcases the band’s alt-pop layered guitar and bass melodies aided by new addition Laura Coles, and abetted by the intricate drumming of percussionist Jaca Freer.

The album kicks off with the power-punk of ‘Sunriser’; with a guitar and bass line worthy of the Sex Pistols, it’s a track about a broken relationship – “I dreamt it before it even happened… I’m forced to be the strong one again.” – and offers hope and the reclamation of personal power (“I can see the horizon, the sun in rising”). Other stellar power-pop moments occur on ‘Heather’s Left For Dead’, with its Weezer-like guitars and layered vocals, and ‘Disown’, oozing more gorgeous guitar washes. 

There is something here for everyone here, with the album covering themes of relationships (‘Tinfoil’) employment (‘Entrepreneur’, wry and Smiths-like), capitalism (‘Boyfriend’s Car’) and male privilege (‘Exposure’), whilst ‘Sad Bride’ is a critique of the institute of marriage – “why would you seal your fate?”.

The album ends with two slower tracks; ‘Take What you Want’, which introduces elements of electronica, and ‘Not my Turf’. Both songs add an introspective note to the end of the album, leaving you much to mull over. There’s a hidden track right at the end too, but I won’t spoil the surprise – you’ll have to listen to find out more! What I will say is that Counting Pennies In The Afterlife offers 11 unaffected songs from the heart, a genuine outpouring of emotion. It’s refreshing because there are no manifestos to beat you over the head with; instead you are hit with a dose of pure, catchy power-pop, and lyrics dealing with personal politics in a capitalist economy.

Counting Pennies In The Afterlife signals Colour Me Wednesday’s return in the best of ways; a perfect collection of tracks to suit any mood, it showcases everything there is to love about this band.

Counting Pennies In The Afterlife is out now via Krod Records.

Fi Ni Aicead
@gotnomoniker

Photo Credit: Katie Gatt

 

EP: URF – ‘For The Ride’

The sound of URF‘s debut EP is as satisfying as the band’s name. The punning colloquialised portmanteau of Ur, hinting at something primal and original, and Earth, being both something spacey and, quite literally, grounded. As a callback to the drone/post-rock American group, Earth, and Black Sabbath who also went under the moniker, it’s a good indicator of what the band will bring too – combining a sound that draws from shoegaze, ’90s indie, post-punk and psych, but with their own shiny new twist.

For The Ride’s opener, ‘Say You Don’t Mind’, starts things off with a spectral but bassy guitar, before lead singer Abbi Parcell comes on all Liz Fraser with soft, almost whispered vocals. But there’s nothing soft about the song’s chorus which explodes with a My Bloody Valentine swoop into crunching guitar. Dry synths courtesy of Sophie Erasmus haunt the track, reeling the listener into the whirlwind of a chorus, at which point Abbi’s vocals become yelps as Jack Brigg’s drums crash around them and the guitars become more sinister. At its close, the synths rise to the fore, drawing sharply from the chaos.

 

‘Night Driving’ has a more standard Britpop chug feel, particularly in the driving chords of its chorus and the picked guitar solo of its middle-eight. There’s more than a nod to Siouxsie Sioux in Abbi’s vocal style and, with a chorus that leans like Suede running into Hole, there’s a feel of an alt.rock trip on the cold night roads of a Northern town. That is, before the track’s final minute leaps into a flurry of percussion, as though the drive has come to a firey end.

The cinematic finish leads perfectly to closer and title track, ‘For the Ride’, which opens with a balladic guitar, and just a hint of a Western feel from lead guitarist Scott Woodcock. It’s a sombre, brooding opening, over which Abbi’s vocals mourn and flow into a banshee wail. The song builds from a post-rock epic that starts at a canter, before picking up the pace to full-rock gallop four minutes in, and taking no prisoners with an emphatic, shoegaze-meets-desert-rock-meets-psych steeplechase for its final 90 seconds.

The Manchester five-piece only released their first single ‘Athena’ in August last year, but already seem to have carved a niche within the ever-growing UK psych scene. For the Ride is the distillation of a number of wide-ranging influences, but crucially the band haven’t let those influences over-ride the scope of their ambition. Creepy, epic, rocking and melancholic, the three tracks show off the breath-taking potential and indicate that URF are ready to put together something truly elemental.

For The Ride is out now.

John McGovern
@etinsuburbiaego

Track Of The Day: BLÓM – ‘Skank Witch’

If you’re a fan of Newcastle’s Tough Tits, you’re definitely going to approve of Blóm, who define themselves as “three cute punks playing pure radge shit”. Together; Erika, Liz and Helen (both formerly Tough Tits) create experimental, hardcore noise-punk and they’ve shared a devious example of their abilities on latest single, ‘Skank Witch’.

Taken from the band’s debut two-track EP POWERFRAU/SKANK WITCH – released via Hominid Sounds – the new single and the accompanying track explore themes such as politics, oppression, mental health, abuse, and the idea of being an outsider. Embracing the label of “QT punx” (queer/trans punk), Blóm clash masculine & feminine ideals in both their style and aesthetic, projecting chaos, conflict and discomfort onto their audiences whilst simultaneously asking: “does any of it actually fucking matter?”

The band will support their debut launch with a weekend of UK gig dates, followed
by an extended UK summer tour with Newcastle-based noisemakers Okay Champ (full tour details to be confirmed). Check Blóm’S Facebook page for more details, and listen to ‘Skank Witch’ below.

You can purchase Blóm’s 2 track EP from Bandcamp.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Track Of The Day: Slowcoaches – ‘Found Down’

A band after our own hearts, having shouted back against the injustice of harassment and toxic masculinity in the music industry on last year’s ‘Complex’, Slowcoaches continue their biting social commentary with new single ‘Found Down’.

Racing with a seething energy, ‘Found Down’ hits your ears with its scuzzy riffs and the raw, angst-driven vocals of Heather Perkins. Oozing an immense, punk-fuelled power, it’s a perfect blast of raging honesty that we need now more than ever.

Of the track, Perkins explains:

It’s about how the ‘struggle’ of the artist is glamorised by mainstream labels via the media in order to sell records… And it’s about how mundane and frustrating the day-to-day reality of that struggle can actually be, whether that’s mental, financial or something else.”

 

‘Found Down’ will be released as a 7″, backed by Misfits’ cover ‘Skulls’ on the B-side. Catch Slowcoaches live at the following dates:

27th May – UK @ Raw Power Festival, London
5th June – Green Door Store, Brighton
21st June – Chunk, Leeds
23rd June – Delicious Clam, Sheffied

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Priti Shikotra