Rory Muldoon, aka Champione put out his debut EP Home earlier this year, and we liked it a lot. Most of the EP was instrumental house music, but he roped in Tiny Dragons’ Lizzie Massey for vocals on standout track The View:
Here’s our regular round up of the latest Brighton music that we’ve come across, and if we can’t write about that with a blog name like ours, what can we?
Palm Springs – Could You Be Wrong
We took delivery of the 7″ of Could You Be Wrong a few weeks ago, but because of a bit of confusion on our part we put off writing about it until we thought it was out. Only we got the release date wrong. The track is four minutes of solid indie pop, well produced with catchy sha-la-la’s drawing you into the chorus. We liked it enough to put into our September Top Five blog post even though we hadn’t written about the track by then, and that should tell you how good we think it is. Flip Side ‘The Wake Of Us’ with it’s spoken word verses is pretty tasty too.
The Beautiful Word – Eating Me, Eating You
Speaking of tasty things, the video for the Beautiful Word’s new single is literally a food fight. Eating Me, Eating You has come out in advance of the band’s album Particles which hits the shelves in about six weeks time.
GAPS – Belong
At the moment GAPS aren’t putting a foot wrong. After the double A side Keep You / Cascade back in the summer, the duo have put out the more acoustic sounding Belong as a free download. GAPS are on the bill at the Green Door Store next Friday (11th October) supporting Pawws.
Eagles for Hands – Lisbon EP
Eagles for Hands put up their new EP as a free download today (after previously being for sale). We don’t know how long it’s going to be free, so grab it while you can. Head straight for the lead track Lisbon, or the blissed out House of track 4, Peaks.
Momotaro – Reverie
Momotaro’s new track Reverie is also available as a free download, in exchange for signing up to their mailing list. Fans of Momotaro’s r’n’b influenced electronic dub should head down to Above Audio on 16th October, when they headline, or the Green Door Store next Monday, when they support Landshapes
Maker – Hopeless (Champione Remix)
Maker posted up the original version of Hopeless about a year ago, but it’s been given a new electro lease of life by Champione, who impressed us with his Home EP earlier this year. Subtle synth pop has been transformed into effervescent anthemic house.
Theo Verney – Heavy Sunn
Theo Verney’s Heavy Sun EP is out later this month on Hate Hate Hate records, but the lead track is up now for all to hear. Heavy choruses collide with deceptively pop verses. Flip side Count It Up can also be heard over on Hate Hate Hate records’ Soundcloud page.
Natasha Khan & Jon Hopkins – Garden’s Heart
Brian Eno protege Jon Hopkins has provided the score for upcoming film How I Live Now, and has roped in Bat For Lashes for the single that goes with the soundtrack. Garden’s Heart is out on Partlaphone next monday and as well as vocal and writing credits, Natasha Khan also directed the video.
Want to know what’s been on the Brighton Music Blog stereo this month? Then read on:
1) Kins – Post Tropical Storm
Our most listened to track was Post Tropical Storm from Kins eponymous debut album. It’s powerful guitar pop, but the power doesn’t come from obvious hooks or direct choruses, but from it’s sonic quality. Tribal drums and layers of shimmering guitars coupled with angelic vocals don’t just elevate Kins’ songs above the rest but take them to a different place altogether.
2) The Electric Soft Parade – One Of Those Days
Our soundtrack to the summer is still Idiots by the Electric Soft Parade. One of Those Days effortlessly breezes out of the speakers with sugary sweet vocals, a light swirling guitar riff and shuffling drums. Here’s a live version from the album launch at the Green Door Store back in June
3) Cate Ferris – Blaze Bright
Another tune which has sounded amazing in the sunshine is Cate Ferris’ new single Blaze Bright. Who doesn’t love a bit of reggae in the summertime?
4) Champione – The View (feat. Lizzie Massey) / Tiny Dragons – Come Alive (PACT Remix)
Yes, Yes. This is two tunes. Well spotted. They’re both dance tunes with Lizzie Massey’s vocals at the forefront, the first in autotuned form on the title track from Champione’s recent EP, and the second as part of her band Tiny Dragons, remixed by PACT who also remixed their track Canvas for a recent mix cd released on Kitsune records. The unmixed PACT remix of Canvas is also on the download package of the Come Alive EP.
5) Crayola Lectern – Trip In ‘D’ (Version)
The past couple of month’s Top Tens have featured tracks from Crayola Lectern’s leftfield The Fall And Rise of … album which came out back in April. Never one to do things the way you’d expect, in July he released a single to go alongside it. Slow Down features in album and alternate versions, alongside a different version of the ten minute long Trip in D, which is the track we’ve selected for our Top Ten. The first eight minutes don’t stray too far from the territory laid down on the album version but just when you’re least suspecting it the track takes a sideways swerve and morphs into a motoric Krautrock monster, awakening the ghost of early period Stereolab.
6) TOY & Natasha Khan – The Bride
The Bride nearly didn’t get to feature in our Top Ten after we picked up the limited-to-250-copies 7” from Resident only to discover on first listen that it was damaged. Speedy Wunderground managed to find another copy from somewhere though and it hasn’t left our record deck since. Despite being a cover of an 70s psychedelic Iranian tune, it’s sounds surprisingly like what you’d expect a collaboration between Bat for Lashes and Toy might sound like – The piano lines and vocal inflections are unmistakably Natasha’s, and the thick chugging guitars match Toy’s trademark sound.
7) GAPS – Keep You
GAPS are probably our favourite discovery of the year so far. The band released their double A side Keep You / Cascade on Sexbeat records two weeks ago at a gig at the Green Door Store, and we put Cascade in our top ten last month. Keep You is the more beat heavy side of the 7”, but still has a beautiful pastoral quality to it:
8) Becky Becky – House Of The Black Madonna
We meant to write about Becky Becky’s album launch gig at the Green Door Store a few weeks ago, but it was a busy weekend for us and we ended up missing the moment. As live shows go, it was much more of a performance than most bands manage. Pulsating synth pop (provided by ex Fence Collective Peter Mason) was accompanied by is-it-real-or-is-it-an-act wine drinking from pint glasses and drunken behaviour from Woodpecker Wooliams. The closest reference point is something like The Knife, but this was more pop and less art. The House of the Black Madonna is from Becky Becky’s forthcoming album of the same name.
9) Us Baby Bear Bones – Sun
The Us Baby Bear Bones EP What Starts With a U Ends With an I is still getting a lot of plays at Brighton Music Blog HQ. As convenient as it may seem, Sun was already coming up as having the most plays of the five tracks last week before the rather chilling video got posted:
10) Limbic System – Distant Lands
Limbic System sent us their Beta Wave EP to listen to a few weeks ago, and the beautiful, fragile Distant Lands was the standout track for us. The band are holding their launch party for the EP at Latest Music Bar on 16th August.
Here’s our regular monthly post of what’s hot on the Brighton Music Blog stereo over the last month.
1) Electric Soft Parade – Summertime in My Heart
We’ve probably listened to more Electric Soft Parade this month than everything else put together, and our top ten probably should just be the tracklist of Idiots, but what fun would that be? Summertime edged out in front of the other tracks, mainly because it’s the current single.
2) Milk & Biscuits – Hairstyles
Hairstyles is the second single from Milk & Biscuits forthcoming album Spirit Nap, and it’s great. It’s a bit Belle & Sebastian, a bit retro pop, and has a video filmed all around Brighton:
3) Us Baby Bear Bones – Swamp
We’ve been waiting for “What Starts With a U Ends With An I” for ages, and it was well worth the wait. A few of the tracks had appeared on YouTube, but the EP was the first chance we’d had to listen to Swamp over and over:
4) The Beautiful Word – Particles
When we first posted up the video for Particles back in May we said that it could well be the best thing they’ve done. After repeated plays, we’re pretty much sure it is.
5) New Union – Staying Friends
Staying Friends is the lead track on the New Union’s eponymous EP which came out four weeks ago. All four tracks on the EP are great, and the artwork for the 12″ is just as classy as we’ve come to expect from the band.
6) IYES – Lighthouse (BBC Introducing Session)
For their recent BBC session IYES swapped the electronics for a cello and it sounded lush. Unfortunately it’s long disappeared from iPlayer, so here’s the original:
7) Gaps – Cascade
We posted up the video for Gaps lovely, hypnotic upcoming single Keep You a couple of weeks ago, but we ended up listening to it’s AA side Cascade even more. The Guardian agreed with us and made them yesterday’s New Band of the Day! The single will be released on 15th July on Sexbeat.
8) Curxes – Further Still (Avec Sans Remix)
We featured the original version of Further Still in our April Top Ten, but this month a remix surfaced which reversed the vocals, giving the tune a completely different melody:
9) Champione – Bear vs Bear
We only got the chance to give Champione’s tunes a listen last week, which means they haven’t had that many listens which is why Bear vs Bear is only at number nine. This, and the rest of the Home EP, are definitely going to get a lot more listens over the next few weeks:
10) Rivieras – Weekend
Rivieras got in touch on twitter and pointed us in the direction of their latest EP, a four tracker called Weekend. We liked what we heard, but we spotted that it had been up on Soundcloud for at least six months, so didn’t really sit alongside the new music that we write about most of the time. It’s definitely worth a listen though. Here’s the title track:
Tucked in at the end of this week’s gigs picks was an artist who we hadn’t written about before on the blog. Champione are playing a late gig at Sticky Mike’s to support the launch of their new EP which came out yesterday.
The Home EP features an incredibly generous eight tracks of Electro House. Opener MshMshMsh has a fizzy, effervescent introduction, before bubbling into a French House banger. The next couple of tracks, Unicorns and Bear vs Bear, follow suit with a ravey electro house that would sit nicely alongside MSTRKRFTS finest. The View brings female vocals into the equation, sounding a bit like Katy B produced by Justice. Things go a bit dubstep on title track Home, which features vocals by Danny McGurn, and The End uses elements from each of the preceding five tracks to make something new. The EP also has two remixes of The View by Burenze and Dirty Purity.
Home is available through iTunes and Champione’s Bandcamp page, and the launch night is at Sticky Mike’s from 11pm-3am on Saturday night.
It’s that time of week again where wish dish out our recommendations for the best Brighton bands playing around town this weekend. You might not be at Glastonbury, but that’s no reason to miss out on live music.
Our picks for Friday night are the Les Enfants Terribles and Brighton Rocks nights. Les Enfants Terribles is at the Blind Tiger, and has Kill moon, Phantom Runners and The Semper Teens on the bill. Brighton Rocks is at Sticky Mikes and sees The Repeat Prescriptions, Midnight Wire, Karlek and Victims Athletic playing.
There’s loads of good stuff on Saturday too, starting in the afternoon. There’s a twelve hour surf rock all dayer on at the Green Door store, kicking off at 4pm and going on until 4am, with The Space Agency playing at some point, as well as loads of DJs and a few other bands from out of town. It’s also The Open House Pub’s Cider Festival, which has Jennifer Left and Jacko Hooper playing live. Finally Champione have their EP launch at a late night gig at Sticky Mike’s from 11pm.