new music – Tigercub, Samuel Organ, Winston & Goldstein, Alice Amelia, Adolescent, The Modes, Summa

Here’s this week’s dose of new music. A real mixed bag, as usual. First up is the video for the new Tigercub single Blue Blood. We’ve mentioned this before, but the video has only just appeared online:

Next up is The Physics House Band’s Samuel Organ with his latest upload to soundcloud, whose title is a real mouthful – It’s cool if you don’t want to say anything, I’ll just say nothing too. The track is easier on the ears than it is on the tongue – lush chilled electronica.

We don’t often post Latin up on the blog but we’ve got reason to with the new track from Winston & GoldsteinNon Omnis Moriar (The Dead Can). It’s been more years than I care to remember since I studied any Latin, so I’ve deferred to Google translate, which tells me that Non Omnis Moriar means I Will Not Die, and the phrase gets chanted over electronic beats which build up over the course of the track. This is the second tgrack we’ve heard from Winston & Goldstein’s upcoming album In The Eyes of Others, and on the basis of these, we’re very keen to hear some more.

Alice Amelia has grown massively since we first saw her and with her debut single, it feels like she’s properly arrived – Sassy r’n’b vocals and big production, 11:11 is really rather good.

K-TV, which got a premier on XLR8R last week, is the second track that we’ve heard from Adolescent‘s upcoming Golden Halls EP. All effervescent electronica and phased synths, this is pushing all out buttons.

Time to wake up a bit now, with the new single from The Modes. The band say they’re influenced by Royal Blood and the Black Keys, and you can hear these influences comin through on Not This Time:

Finally we’re finishing up with an EP from Summa, who has an EP out called Roads – The beautiful, ambient Diapason is the lead track:

 

 

Becky Becky video interview

In the way of the blogs, we sent Brighton’s electro-pop superstars Becky Becky some questions, thinking to celebrate the release of their new albumGood Morning, Midnight they might supply a few hesitant stuttering finger-typed words, about why House of the Black Madonna is the future of rock ‘n’ roll and how Jean Rhys could have rocked the middle-European disco had she been of a certain age.

Instead, they sent us this.

The album’s out May 1st and is available from their website at www.beckybecky.com

 

Who are… ?

Becky Becky is two people: Gemma L Williams and Peter J D Mason. Bandmates, friends, lovers, enemies. We´ve existed together in almost every possible permutation. We´ve loved each other, hated each other, walked together, walked out on each other. There is no pit of despair we haven´t pushed each other to, we struggle together… but we always remain together.

Where were Becky Becky… ?

…formed in Brighton, England, a long time ago. There have been casualties. We started making music by following a very loose manifesto. One rule that will always remain is: no “real” instruments. No drums, guitars… only electronic music.

By limiting your options, you free yourself.

Where does… ?

What´s in a name? It´s our name. A fifty-fifty partnership, making one complete whole: Becky Becky.

Why “Good Morning, Midnight”?

…from Jean Rhys´ 1939 novel, which took its name from an Emily Dickenson poem. We recommend both these texts.

And what does she mean to you?

Jean Rhys was an author often depicting mistreated, rootless women. To this day, her words are still relevant and easily identifiable. She is an inspiration and a favourite author of ours – a fact which helped bring us together.

Are you a European band now? 

We formed in Brighton and currently reside here, but we are not involved with the Brighton music scene or anything like that. We feel like outsiders here.  If ‘Good Morning, Midnight’ feels like a European record, then that makes sense. It was written in Prague and recorded up a mountain in a wooden chalet in Seythenex, a tiny French Alpine village.

Who are your musical influences?

Hot Chip and ´80s synth-pop. From Europe, the Knife and Legowelt. Eurotrash and Eurobeats too, if you put aside your pretensions. That kind of music is full of joy and is genuinely great.

Is this music to dance to… ?

When we created Becky Becky, we wanted to make danceable music with lyrics tackling serious themes. We hope you can sit and listen to it, to the stories. But we also want you to just switch off and dance. If you come to see us play live, you should definitely be dancing.

Do you have live… ?

We are not really a gigging band. We do not just play. We try and make every show unique. This requires a lot more effort these days as our ideas become increasingly more elaborate. So we do not play very often. We do not just turn up and plug in and play. We make shows.

Do you… ?

For the autumn, we are lining up some shows in Europe and we have one in New York City on the 26th September in the Pyramid Club. Our next show is our album launch in Brighton on Friday 23rd May. It will be an audio-visual show and probably the most elaborate we´ve ever attempted.

What comes next ?

Becky Becky is in a constant fragile state. Gemma is recovering from the unexpected death of her Woodpecker alter ego; and Peter is working on other projects.

Becky Becky tumblr_inline_mnmen1Xg2w1r1ougb

 

Who knows what comes next ?

The album Good Morning, Midnightis out on May 1st 2014 and available from the Becky Becky website at www.beckybecky.com

 

 

Hiawatha Telephone Company plays Passengers Greatest Hits

‘Passengers Greatest Hits’. You might think this was a collection of songs by Mike Rosenberg but its title comes from the series of photographs of forlorn commuters which feature in the lyric book that accompanies this new CD by our occasional Brighton Music Blog contributor and photographer in his alternative moniker of Hiawatha Telephone Company. We spoke to Jon about what he thought he was up to.   BMB: How was this album made? JON: The whole thing was written in two parts – half of the songs in February 2013, the other half in February 2014 and then it was recorded a couple of days later pretty much in single takes by Martyn Lewis Moss (Butterfly House) in his Kemp Town attic on a Tascam cassette recorder. No computers or wizzardry involved. Then Martyn added some bass and keyboards, Maria Marzaioli (Slum of Legs, Reds) came along the following day and played some violin on some tracks she’d never heard before and there you have it. Wham bam, it’s an album, man! It sounds primitive. Do you wish you’d spent more time on it? Passengers Greatest Hits Probably. It’s a hard album to get into because there is no compromise with modern technology or much in the way of professionalism to be honest. But that also means it doesn’t sound like anything else. It won’t age because it already sounds old. We just wanted to get it down really quickly. And Martyn has this thing about never trying more than three takes of anything. If it isn’t working you should just move on, is his recording motto. In most cases we left it at just the one take. The flaws are so obvious that to get into the album you have to overlook them and treat it differently from the things you’d normally listen to. I think listening to it should feel more like a stroll around a small art gallery, rather than putting on a CD. Did it have any particular influences? I’ve always loved those old crackly blues and country recordings from the 1930s and so on [Ed: the first Hiawatha Telephone Company album was named after folklorist Harry Smith who specialised in collecting such 78s] and some of the songs take that approach. There’s the early primitive pop songs of Daniel Johnston, also recorded onto tape and those sound even more flaky than these do. And I was listening to a fair bit of Bill Callahan this winter, so some of these songs sounds a bit like Smog to me. But who knows? We’re just a mess of all the things we absorb over time, aren’t we? Tell us about the songs. I’m really proud of the opening song ‘If I didn’t love you’. I thought I was going to write a love song. Turned out it was a splitting up or a morbid death song. It was the first one we recorded and I told Martyn his piano should sound like the cold desolate Nordic sound of Sibelius, which it kind-of does. The shortest song is ‘keep it simple’ which started out as a bit of a joke that I wrote in 5 minutes playing around in the chord of D. It’s not really recorded right but we just left it and I think it’s cute. Oddly the next two shortest songs are the ones with the most words in them, both songs I’m really proud of. ‘Song about time’ has some great poetry in it, about needing to live life for the moment. Because you cannot battle time? Yep. The other one is ‘The Cost of Going To Work By Train’ which is an epic by my standards, full of words and stories. I intended it to be a bit of a mythical song, in the form of a traditional folk song, but one firmly rooted in modern lived experience. It’s clearly not about any one real person but it tries to represent the common man. At least I think it tries. There are some proper country songs in this collection aren’t there? Yes, two at least. ‘Ain’t no rainbow’ is a lovely song I think, soft, simple with the same four chords throughout but I like the clichés it uses which still manage to sound surprising to me. And I like how I just told Maria to play something sad and rural, and she came up with this wonderful violin line that’s totally infused with straw and cow-shit. And then there’s Woody’s Song, which I’m really proud of. It’s based on the New Year’s Rulin’s that Woody Guthrie wrote and I have as a poster in my kitchen but he never turned them into a song so far as I know. So I did. I think it could sound better of course, much as I love Maria’s beautiful country-fried violin. But I still hope someone else records it. I think it could be a big hit in Nashville! Passengers Greatest hitsDo you see all of these as songs other people might record? For sure. I think they’re good enough and ought to exist in other versions. They’re all pretty simple, but pretty little tunes. I ought to record other versions myself! What about Dave? A lot of people will think that’s about one person [our present Prime Minister].  That wasn’t really the intention, although I can see why people think it might be. It’s not how I see him – if anything it’s more about the sorts of people he probably thinks he’s against. It’s a song I really like playing live. It gets a reaction. It isn’t the only political song on the album by any means, although none of them are very obviously political I suppose. Do you have a favourite song?  I’m fond of Waking Up With You, more for the verses as I still don’t feel like I’ve finished the chorus. I might rewrite it, but I just wanted to record it for my wife. I didn’t really expect to include it in the album but it turned out OK so I did. And I really like the last song ‘I’ll never Leave you Baby’ which is another simple love song, but one with a twist. It’s a fun song to play live and I also really like Martyn’s bass line on it. A stupidly simple song, but it works. The CD’s only available in physical copy at the moment. Is that right? Yes it is. It’s a proper CD with a nice little printed photo-lyric book in a numbered edition, and it’s dead cheap. You can buy it or just listen on bandcamp, download a couple of tracks for free via Soundcloud or I’d send the mp3s (and the lyrics and chords) to anyone who asks nicely. I’ll probably make the thing available for download but only when most of the CDs have gone. Any plans for more recording? Well it took me five years to get around to recording my first album and another five years for this one. That said, I have plenty of other songs in a big book which never get played so maybe I should record some of them. So many songs, so little time. And we managed to go the whole interview without asking about your band name. Yep. Well done for that. Thanks. {smiles} ‘Passengers Greatest Hits’ is available now in a limited numbered 1st edition of 100 from the Hiawatha Telephone Company bandcamp site Hiawatha Telephone Company

Hidden Trail records launch Ellie Ford’s EP

We’ve been loving the Ellie Ford ‘Show Night In’ EP for a while, but after a couple of superb compilations the excellent Hidden Trail Records are putting it out as their first physical artiste release. It was launched last night at Brighton’s Red Roaster Cafe and we were there to enjoy a great night of some of the UK’s finest singer-songwriters.

Stevie Ray Latham

First up was Stevie Ray Latham, a young folkswinger who completely inhabits the spirit of a young Bob Dylan circa1963 but writes his own brilliant songs which he conveys with real aplomb. Songs like the excellent South Coast Blues show off his authentic style. His new album on Brighthelmstone’s At The Helm records is due out soon and is definitely going to be a cracker, and we hope to bring you more info on that in due course.

Kelly Oliver

Kelly Oliver was new to me. An out-of-towner, from Stevenage, this was her first gig in Brighton. We’re not supposed to mention the non-Brighton folk so I won’t dwell too long on just how excellent she was, but she’s played the Cambridge Folk festival and with Dave Swarbrick of Fairport Convention and judging from last night she’s going to be a big hit on the folk scene. Last night we were particularly taken by her song Grandpa was a Stoker and her cover of Beyonce’s If I were a Boy.

Ellie Ford

Headliner for the night was Brighton’s own Ellie Ford and she completely owned the small Redroaster stage, switching with ease between guitar and harp, claiming to have not played her EP for a while with typical flaky charm, then proceeding to play some magnificent soulful versions of the EP’s songs that held the packed room rapt. The songs sound even better to me live than on record, but particularly stunning in both forms was Low, which tonight was performed in a tentative heartful rendition that was quite stunning. There were also some new songs from the album-in-the-making which we really hope to hear before the year is out.

Ellie has also just released a ‘Covers project’ and show cased some of those tunes and a few others, two gorgeous Joanna Newsom songs, a Karen Dalton cover, a fantastic version of Bob Dylan’s Corrina Corrina, and ending with an unplanned encore of a beautiful interpretation of Dylan’s Buckets of Rain.

A terrific singer who is growing in confidence with every gig, Ellie is definitely one to watch.

Ellie Ford

Words and pictures were by Jon Southcoasting

Gallery – Blood Red Shoes at Concorde 2

Last night Blood Red Shoes played a hometown gig at the Concorde and we managed to sneak a view from the front, for the first three songs, at least. The two piece rocked hard, and the crowd loved it – We can’t remember the last gig we went to at the Concorde that had that such a great atmosphere. And it was loud – my goodness it was loud. Thank goodness for the earplugs which are a must for when we’re up the front shooting.

Gallery – Moulettes at the Haunt

On Thursday night, Moulettes played at the Haunt to promote their upcoming album Constellations. Moulettes are one of Brighton’s hardest working bands, who seem to be constantly on tour. It’s been over a year since they played in Brighton (and around eighteen months since we last caught them), and you could tell that they relished playing a hometown gig – as well as the opportunity to sleep in their own beds after play a gig! The line up has changed a little since we last saw them, and on top of the original core of members they were also joined by Eliza Jaye on guitar, vocals and violin, Emma Gattrill on harp and saxaphone, Faye Houston from The Resonators on backing vocals on one track and Kate Young on violin, who also played a support set of her own. The album features a whole host of other local musicians and midway through the gig Hannah praised the local music scene for all it’s talent. Constellations is out on June 2nd on Navigator Records. You can listen to the title track below and you can pre-order it here. Click on the images below to view them large.

Weekend Gig Picks – Moulettes, Tigercub, Crayola Lectern, Blood Red Shoes, Phantom Runners, Spit Shake Sisters, Ellie Ford, Milk & Biscuits

It’s been a while since we made a Weekend Gig Picks post, but with as many great gigs as Brighton has this weekend, we couldn’t resist.

moulettesTomorrow night we’ll be down at The Haunt where Moulettes play a hometown gig in advance of their upcoming album Constellations. Also on thursday, at Bermuda Triangle, Tigercub are launching their new single Blue Blood (which comes out on limited translucent blue 7″ on 5th May). And as if that wasn’t enough choice, Brighton Music Blog favourite Crayola Lectern is playing at the Verdict, on the bill with Cardiacs’ William D Drake.

hopturbulencephantom-27955On Friday night we’re off to the Concorde 2 for Blood Red Shoes, currently on tour around the UK (where Wytches joined them on a few dates, but unfortunately won’t be at the Brighton gig). Up at The Hope, Phantom Runners are holding their album launch, supported by Glossy Coat and Young Night. It’s also this month’s Les Enfants Terribles at the Blind Tiger headlined by Spit Shake Sisters. And then over at the Red Roaster café Hidden Trail Records are hosting a night showcasing their first proper signing Ellie Ford.

We’re also out on Sunday night too, for Milk and Biscuits‘ gig at the Blind Tiger where Prince Vaseline and Cuddly Shark support.