Archive for the Music Category

Great new music… Flying Horseman

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2018 by dc


Flying Horseman is the brainchild of Bert Dockx and his band’s latest album, Rooms / Ruins, is one of 2018’s highlights.

I came late to the party and only discovered the band via Spotify a couple of months ago. Ask me to name some other Belgian bands and I’d ignorantly probably just come back with dEUS and The Radios, but the Antwerp music scene has been thriving for decades and Flying Horseman are leading the pack.

Rooms / Ruins is a charmingly tricky album to pin down as it slinks across a number of genres and styles. Tracks like The Key, Reverie and Bee Season have a proggy-folk air to them, all gently hypnotic melodies, percussive shuffles and ambient tickles. Fever Room struts it’s angular post-punk stylings like a funky Television / XTC hybrid. Stars even has a poppy feel to it before it cascades into a wild, Faust-esque meltdown at the end. Then there’s Private Isle and (my favourite) Deep Earth, both of which contort into slick krautrock-esque motorik grooves half way through and shape-shift effortlessly.

There’s a beautifully expansive and playful air breezing throughout the album. Some of the proggier sections made me think of some of Pink Floyd‘s early 70’s albums like Meddle and Obscured by Clouds, and some of the wiggier moments made me recall, Can. Vocally there’s airs of Jeff Buckley less operatic moments and Conor O’Brien from Villagers, and lyrically there’s a real sense of poetic intrigue and psychedelic story telling.

Rooms / Ruins is a hidden gem and definitely worth investing some time in if you like the more melodic moments of prog and psychedelia but are a bit of a folkie at heart. In fact, the whole five album back catalogue is well worth a listen from start to finish and the band are one of my favourite finds of the year.

Great new music… Casey Malanuk

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2018 by dc


I stumbled across Casey Malanuk via a Spotify recommendation earlier in the year. The first tune of his I heard was, Camaraderie, the opening track from one of three studio albums he’s released this year, Short Film Season. Powered by ethereal oohs and ahhs, chugging guitars and some great spoken word samples, it reminded me of a mix of Chad VanGaalen, early Department Of Eagles and Public Service Broadcasting.

The track was interesting and catchy enough to prompt me to delve a little deeper. There’s not a lot of info about Casey online but I did discover he’s from Charleston, South Carolina and is now based in Los Angeles studying at the Musicans Institute in Hollywood (he’s only 18!). He’s released three albums this year, Casey, the aforementioned, Short Film Season and Hello & Goodbye.

There’s a glorious air of experimentation in his songs as well as a great ear for (often unusual) little hooks, and all three albums have their moments. Hello & Goodbye, a collaboration with Brendan Fitzpatrick is particularly impressive though. At it’s best there’s little nods to artists like Car Seat Headrest, Beck and Jack White, and even at just 7 tracks and 14 minutes long it’s up there as one of the best collections of songs I’ve heard this year.

All three albums have a sketchbook-like air to them, which makes sense when you consider he’s only 18 and has released three albums in a year, but his potential is staggering. It’s exciting to think what he’s capable of next.


Great new music… Big Red Machine

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2018 by dc


Most Justin Vernon fans will already know about his latest side project, Big Red Machine. But for those not yet aware of his latest venture, his latest incarnation sees him teaming up with The National‘s Aaron Dessner, alongside a host of other names dotted across the album, including This Is the Kit, Phoebe Bridgers and members of Arcade Fire and The Staves.

Echoes of both of Bon Iver‘s last two albums can be heard across Big Red Machine. Bon Iver‘s penchant for soaring harmonies and heartfelt digital soul appear most prominently on tracks like, Hymnostic and I Wont Run From It, which could both easily be off-cuts from 2011’s Bon Iver, Bon Iver.

The sonic experimentation of last year’s 22, A Million is even more prominent. Tracks like Lyla, Gratitude and Forest Green, all follow vaguely similar paths, pulling in shuffling, arrhythmic drum beats, gently swelling synths and mellow vocals. All three tracks clock in at just under six minutes each and whilst the album has a hazy, sprawling feel to it, it never seems overly indulgent – although, OMDB, with it’s gurgling Vernon vocals and shuffling nowhere rhythms, does test the patience a bit.

The album’s at it’s best when it’s find’s just the right balance between the fascinating sonic experimentation of 22, A Million, and the heartfelt melodicism of Bon Iver, Bon Iver. Fourth track, Air Stryp, is stunning. Some of the beats have an almost Aphex Twin-esque feel to them and Vernon‘s voice whispers and growls perfectly.

The new album also marks the start of a new project headed up by Vernon and Dessner called People. It’s based on musical collaboration and Dessner describes it as, “a large collective and community of artists that’s been collaborating for a long time — which is a way to sort of work together and publish music that’s sort of outside of the traditional marketing bottleneck. Big Red Machine is really a community effort: I guess it involves almost 30 musicians. It does come out of our friendship, but it’s really something that is deeply collaborative.”

Big Red Machine‘s eponymous debut album is available to buy and stream now.

Great new music… Dead Captain

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 10, 2018 by dc

Tameside’s psych-rock beatniks, Dead Captain are currently in the studio rustling up some new tunes that’ll feature on their debut album next year.

Their first eponymous EP, and singles, Who Knows, The Fear and Vermillion take in musical influences like Grandaddy, Angelo Badalamenti, Elliot Smith and Super Furry Animals, and mess around with them to create their own distinctive slacker rock sound.

In the last twelve months the duo have released three videos. Check all three videos out below (and follow Dead Captain on Twitter here):

Great new music… West On Colfax

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2018 by dc

West on Colfax are a new five piece band from Lancashire. They were formed at the start of this year and debut single, The Line, has a classic Americana feel to it that evokes the music of Country icons like Glenn Campbell and Gram Parsons as well as tipping a hat to vaguely recent bands like Drive By TruckersWilco and Real Estate.

Singer Alan Hay’s voice has real warmth and character to it, and Scott Carey‘s (Paris Angels) lyrics conjur up an age old tale of love and longing underpinned with some lovely country rock with touches of sublime pedal steel. I’m looking forward to hearing more.

Check out the video for, The Line below:

New Dead Captain tune and video

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , on July 1, 2018 by dc

Tameside duo, Dead Captain have just released the video for their new tune, Vermillion, and it’s a strange little treat.

The accompanying NSFW video features a magical tea towel, unicorns, smokey country lanes and ‘blink-and-you’ll-miss-them’ cameos from 80’s icons, Max Headroom and Carol Vorderman – check it out below:

According to the single blurb, Dead Captain’s debut album will be out “sometime between the collapse of Brexit and the impeachment of Trump“. So, that’s either, never or sometime next year then!

Great new music… Cold Water Swimmers

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2018 by dc


Cold Water Swimmers are a brand new, fresh out the oven band from Manchester, England. They were formed just a few months back by Chris Bridgett (Dub Sex, Rude Club, The G-O-D) and I was lucky enough to see them perform last month at an intimate gig in the city’s Northern Quarter. They blew me away.

Raw and unflinching, their sound combines elements of post-punk and garage rock to create something really immediate and moving. They only have a handful of songs currently and there’s only a snatch of debut single, She’s Falling Apart available to listen to, but releases are in the pipeline and imminent. Make a note and get onboard. You can follow CWS on Twitter here and stay up to date. Here’s a snippet of, She’s Falling Apart