Track Of The Day: MJ Guider – ‘FM Secure’

Murky, industrial sounds permeate ‘FM Secure’, the latest single from MJ Guider. Lifted from her upcoming album Sour Cherry Bell, which is set for release on 18th September via Kranky, Guider’s shadowy electronics smoulder alongside her atmospheric, beguiling vocals.

Based in New Orleans, MJ Guider (aka Melissa Guion) blends elements of shoegaze, gothic pop and industrial sounds to create her hypnotic music. On her upcoming album, Guider explores power dynamics, musing about the notion of “lost and found, corporeal and cerebral, harnessed and exploited, of one and many, in this reality and the next.” This musing extends to ‘FM Secure’, its ominous glow intensifying with each listen.

Speaking about her upcoming record and the tools she used to create it, Guider explains: “I was curious to see how far I could go with them, even if that meant reaching the ends of their capacity to do what I wanted. But I never exhausted them and they never exhausted me.” Listen to ‘FM Secure’ below and follow MJ Guider on bandcamp and Instagram for more updates.

Photo Credit: Craig Mulcahy

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Track Of The Day: Winter Gardens – ‘Tapestry’

Having previously charmed us live at The Finsbury, Brighton band Winter Gardens have now announced that their debut EP is set for release next month.

Title track and latest single, ‘Tapestry’, oozes a euphoric ethereal haze as twinkling, shoegaze-inspired hooks whirr alongside the soaring vocals of front person Ananda. Flowing with a rich anthemic emotion, it’s an utterly captivating slice of other worldly dream-punk, highlighting Winter Gardens as definite ones to watch.

Commenting on the forthcoming record, the band explain:

“The EP epitomises our shared love for the beauty in the world, both obvious and hidden. ‘Life’s Rich Tapestry’ is how we perceive nature, art, and world affairs.”

Tapestry, the debut EP from Winter Gardens, is set for release on 25th September via socially conscious independent label Austerity Records.

Mari Lane 
@marimindles

WATCH: Belako – ‘Truth’

Whether it’s the global nature of alternative music in the age of streaming, or possibly the cultural aftershocks of the credit crunch, it feels like there’s a new, mucho cool Spanish indie band every week. In the case of Belako – a four-piece from the Basque town of Mungia – using the word “new” might be a bit of a stretch for a band who have been releasing music since a couple of online demos in 2011 – but, whilst forthcoming LP Plastic Drama may be their fourth album, it’s their first international release on a major label. The best part?  The album’s lead single, ‘Truth’, finds them in as fiercely DIY a mood as ever.

Clocking in at a pacey (and satisfying balanced) two minutes and twenty-two seconds, ‘Truth’ lays its cards on the table pretty quickly; in a matter befitting its title, it launches into the slightly off-kilter, detuned guitar line and punchy, if tinny, sounding drums, which are consistent throughout. This is even more true of the track’s video, in some respects, which provides its viewer with the nine lines that form the song’s lyrical content.

Theirs is a stripped-back take on post-punk, consistent with some of the genre’s best voices, who have generally used a fairly simple adage: find a message, repeat it, make no compromises. There’s something of Dream Wife’s early stuff in vocalist Cristina Lizarraga’s atonal vocal style here, but you can take the combination of the persuasive thrust and wry observation all the way back to pioneers such as The Fall or Gang of Four.

The song’s shonky feel arguably gives the band a kinship with Hinds, perhaps the most widely-recognised Spanish group of recent times. Whilst lyrically, the “truth” being spoken here is that the concept of romance has been weaponised, ensuring that love keeps us “locked up”, enforcing our exploitation – essentially, it’s about as far from the usual pop content as you can get. 

For an album that “searches for the real meaning of things in a world that translates everything into assembly lines, manufacturing and the exploitation of living beings”, ‘Truth’ appears to be the ideal introduction, ahead of its release. It’s particularly encouraging to see a band, now some time into their career, embrace their ideas and apply them not only to lyrics but also to the album’s production. If there is any truth in pop music, it looks certain to come from Belako.

Plastic Drama, the upcoming album from Belako, is out 28th August via BMG.

John McGovern
@etinsuburbiaego

Get In Her Ears x Summer Sounds 06.08.20

Tash & Kate were in the Hoxton Radio studio spinning some of their favourite summer sounds. Highlights include tracks by Kynsy, heka, Scuti, Evil House Party, Babehaven, Circe and bestfriend. They kicked off the show with Kate Bush and finished with Whitney. Enough said.

Listen back here:

Tracklist
Kate Bush – Running Up That Hill
Circe – Ten Girls
Ailbhe Reddy – Between Your Teeth
Cehryl – moon eyes
Bestfriend – last bus in the a.m.
Babeheaven – Cassette Beat
The Crayon Set – Summer Song
Mandi (m&i) – into my mind
Bethany Thomas – I’m Not Sorry and I’m Not Scared
Girlhood – sister
Julia Sophie – I Left You
Kynsy – Cold Blue Light
Deaf Surf – Strangers
Izzy Bizu – Tough Pill
Robin Kester – Cigarette Song
Fenne Lily – Three Oh Nine
Dream Nails – Vagina Police
ALYSS – CLUSTERFCK (MONO/POLY REMIX)
Scuti – Weekend
Evil House Party – Wicked
Heka – redwoods
Byenary – Princess Give A Fuck
The Muffin Heads – Snow White
Hannah Moule & The Moulettes – Idiolect Pt.1
Laura Guarch – Fleeting Light
HAAI – Head Above The Parakeets
Whitney Houston – It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay