FIVE FAVOURITES: Los Bitchos

London-based, pan-continental instrumental four-piece Los Bitchos are gearing up to release their highly anticipated debut album, Let The Festivities Begin! on 4th February via City Slang. Formed of Serra Petale (guitar), Agustina Ruiz (keytar), Josefine Jonsson (bass) and Nic Crawshaw (drums), the band have joyfully blended elements of Peruvian chicha, Argentine cumbia, Turkish psych and surf guitars to create their collection of buoyant new songs.

We think one of the best ways to get to know a band is by asking what music inspired them to write in the first place. We caught up with Los Bitchos to ask about their “Five Favourites” – five albums that have inspired their song-writing techniques. Check out their choices below and scroll down to watch Los Bitchos’ video for her ‘Pista (Fresh Start)’ at the end of this post.

 

1. Dead Or Alive – Youthquake
Serra: This album embodies everything I love about the 80’s. Outrageous high energy production, out of control brass arrangements, chorus stained overdriven guitars and uncanny vocals that really hit. Funnily enough, I had only come across the full album over the past few years, before that I’d always thought of Dead Or Alive as a bit of a one hit wonder band – they are far from that. This was one of Stock Aitken and Waterman’s first breakthrough productions, which for me really became the sound of the 80’s. They are second to none, and every time I listen back to the songs, I always find an extra element going on in the background that i did not notice before.

All the while you have Pete Burns laying down one of the best vocal performances I’ve ever heard on an album, he is like a cyberpunk Opera singer that’s stumbled into an 80’s rave, such a captivatingly magical frontman. Each of the songs on the record have something that stands out and it’s pure fun and energy from start to finish. Apart from the incredible stand out hit, ‘You Spin Me Round’, the album truly shines with songs like ‘DJ Hit That Button’ and ‘My Heart Goes Bang (Get me to the Doctor)’. This album makes me feel like dancing all night with big hair, a Pete Burns eye patch, spandex, shoulder pads and taking on the world.

2. Lush – Spooky
Serra: I remember hearing and seeing the video for ‘Nothing Natural’ for the first time about 7 years ago when my boyfriend randomly sent me a YouTube link saying, “I think you’ll like this” – boy was he right! Lush were definitely on my radar as they would often pop up on 90’s music shows me and my brother would watch in Australia when I was a child, but my love for them was really cemented in my mid-twenties. Robin Guthrie from the Cocteau twins was on board as the producer, and what he did with this record is absolutely sublime. Lots of layering, lots of effects and washes running throughout the songs, I think it’s quite a studio album in that way, a lot of these effects would have been difficult to pull off live.

Miki Beryani and Emma Anderson have somewhat of a perfect matching of gorgeous falsetto vocals, as they often sing together on their songs and their harmonies just get under my skin in the best possible way. Their vocals are so delicate, and I love how they contrast against the swirling guitars drenched in chorus and reverb and Guthrie’s wall of sound. I would say the guitar sound/tone on this record is something I try to emulate on everything I do. Songs like ‘Nothing Natural’, ‘Tiny Smiles’ and ‘Superblast’ are stand out moments, their vocal and guitar melodies seem to capture certain bleakness and sadness that always sticks with me and has had such a profound influence on the music I make today.

3. The Ramones – End Of The Century
Agustina: End of the Century by The Ramones is arguably one of the less popular albums among Ramones fans, but personally, I always loved it the most. To start with, the artwork looks incredible, it’s just cheesy punk all over the place. They look cool and carefree, but retaining a certain romanticism at the same time, a cover full of contradictions. It was an album produced by Phil Spector, which obviously meant instant speculation. Apparently my favourite Ramone (Dee Dee) didn’t even play his bass parts in the final recordings and while they were at the studio it was debauchery and chaos, bless them.

But I gotta give it to them, despite the apparent recording troubles, the songs are pure gems. ‘Danny says?’ makes me wanna cry & go back to my love. ‘I’m Affected’ reminds me of my first kiss outside my parents’ house. ‘Do You Remember Rock and Roll Radio’ takes me back to my bed back home listening to this album for the first time. ‘Baby I Love You’ well, this cover will melt even the most cold person on earth’s heart. I could go on and on forever with all the songs, but don’t worry I won’t! One of my fave bits about this album? Ten years ago I bought a really rare edition in Brooklyn for a fiver without even knowing how special it was, but when I found out, that made me love it even more.

4. PJ Harvey – Let England Shake
Josefine: Not sure how or when Polly Jean Harvey entered my world, but I do know I absolutely RINSED this record in the months leading up to me leaving Sweden behind to move to the UK to study music. It came out in the early spring of 2011, and I moved in the fall that same year, and I would basically only listen to music from the UK to mentally prepare myself for months. This record has really stuck with me over the years, and I continue to discover new things about its melodies and moods still. Picking a record is a funny one for me because controversially (or at least I think it is), I don’t often get hooked on a specific record – instead I tend to get obsessed with a song or artist first and from there jump all over their discography in a frenzy. However, with this record I do stop and listen to it from start to finish as one piece, and what a brilliant piece it is!

5. PJ Harvey – Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea
Nic: This has to be one of the most nostalgic and powerful albums for me. It came out just before my 17th birthday and I remember one of the girls I was working with in the local cinema telling me about this artist she had just discovered with such excitement. She’s put out so many incredible records but for me this one will always feel special. I’ve revisited it so many times. When I went to New York it was one of the albums I listened to a lot while walking miles and miles around the city. ‘Good Fortune’ is one of those songs you can put on and just feel invincible, and like it’s you against the world. It’s so powerful. ‘You Said Something’ instantly brings back memories but still feels like a tune I could discover now and become obsessed with. This album just doesn’t age! ‘The Whores Hustle And The Hustlers Whore’ still gives me chills. The energy and dynamic of this woman is so inspiring. I was just starting to play shows in my first band around that time and PJ was a huge role model for just being myself, knowing my power, and losing myself in performing. A real hero and an absolute masterpiece of an album.

Thanks to Los Bitchos for sharing their favourites with us!

Watch their video for ‘Pista (Fresh Start)’ below.

Follow Los Bitchos on bandcampSpotifyTwitterInstagram & Facebook

Photo Credit: Tom Mitchell

LISTEN: LIME – ‘Surf n Turf’

With a sound as refreshing as the citrus fruit they’re named after; LIME‘s latest single ‘Surf n Turf’ is a catchy slice of surf-pop joy. The band have turned the experience of having an unwanted confrontation on a night out, in to an easy-going ear worm.

Coming together from across the UK, the four-piece band mix elements of psych, indie, and other genres to create their buoyant guitar tunes. Accompanied by a kaleidoscopic set of visuals (directed and produced by Jay Bartlett), ‘Surf n Turf’ brims with indie melodies, energetic vocals, and plenty of attitude.

We can’t wait to see them live at our GIHE gig at The Finsbury Pub supporting Jemma Freeman & The Cosmic Something on 8th May (Free entry. Event details here.) Watch the video for ‘Surf n Turf’ below, and follow LIME on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Photo credit: Julia Nala

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

LISTEN: LegPuppy – ‘Secret Friend’ (feat. Josefin Öhrn)

A slow-burning, atmospheric new offering; South London band LegPuppy have collaborated with award-winning Swedish musician Josefin Öhrn on their latest track, ‘Secret Friend’. Independently released on Valentine’s Day, the new song is a smoldering four minutes of electro-psych sound.

When LegPuppy first heard Josefin Öhrn + the Liberation’s album Mirage, they described it as “like discovering the Velvet Underground for the first time.” The band instantly knew they wanted to collaborate with Swedish Grammy nominated Öhrn, and ‘Secret Friend’ was the result. Öhrn’s exquisite French accent floats above the band’s moody music, and contrasts well with the accompanying male vocal.

LegPuppy are set the release their new album There’s No Rock Stars later this year, and will be announcing tour, and festival dates in the near future. For now, listen to ‘Secret Friend’ below, and follow LegPuppy on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Secret Friend feat Josefin Öhrn (radio edit) by Leg Puppy

Follow Josefin Öhrn on Facebook and Spotify too.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

PREMIERE: Moon Palace – ‘Bold’

A brooding, yet hopeful blur of atmospheric guitars and soft vocals; Moon Palace have shared their latest single ‘Bold’. The Seattle indie band – fronted by twin sisters Cat & Carrie Biell – have been busy gearing up for the release of their new album Shadowcast, which is described as “a balance between light and dark”.

‘Bold’ is a gentle, yet urgent track that elegantly showcases this balance. The accompanying video directed by Sierra of Elope Productions, also reflects the band’s outlook. Talking about their new record, the band extrapolate: “Shadow self and trying to be positive through interactions with people you love. Outer world to the innermost personal world. Balancing the sun sign and moon sign. Knowing your inner personal self within the context of the universe.”

Throughout the recording of their new album, the band members would text each other songs from Sonic Youth, Talking Heads, Duran Duran and Big Thief, shaping the sound of what was to come. Twins Cat (guitar, vocals) and Carrie (bass, vocals) began writing songs together as teenagers, cultivating a musical bond made particularly significant as children of two deaf parents. Joined by Jude Miqueli (drums) and Darcey Zoller (cello, synth), the band’s hook-driven yet at times discordant guitars are the perfect soundtrack for late-night desert drives.

When they’re not making music, Carrie works with the blind and deaf to secure employment (as well as taking care of her 5-year-old son), Jude is an elementary school teacher & drum instructor at Queer & Trans Youth Music Program, Cat is a graphic designer and Darcey also works in art direction and film production.

Watch the video for ‘Bold’ below and follow Moon Palace on Facebook for more updates.

Moon Palace US 2019 Tour Dates
9/20: Seattle, WA @ Clockout Lounge (Album Release Show)
9/28: Bellingham, WA @ The Shakedown
10/12: Seattle, WA @ Screwdriver Bar (Spread)
10/19: Boise, ID @ Neurolux
10/24: Portland, OR @ Bunk Bar
10/26: San Francisco, CA @ Amnesia
12/6: Seattle, WA @ Southgate Roller Rink
12/13: Seattle, WA @ Crybaby Artist Showcase

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut