Sunday, February 27, 2011

MV : "Twilight cafe" by Susan Fassbender

Few pop stars are this cool.

Comics : The Dragon Of Hong Kong

The latest Yoko Tsuno book sees her remain in the Far East and become involved in what seems like a story inspired by Godzilla! While in HK she comes across a huge sea going reptile which turns out to be an escaped example of accelerated growth experiments. There is another huge reptile however, this one mechanical and controlled by a mad man who wishes to make a movie...

The plot is a bit odd to be honest but the story remains engaging. There is a nice bit of detective work in between the segments of monster mayhem. As with most Yoko Tsuno books quite a bit of belief suspension is required, there is the usual dollop of "weird science". Yoko's companions make their usual cameo appearances and help (more or less).

In the end the two monsters battle, we would be rioting if that didn't happen of course. Yoko ends up being the guardian of a young orphaned girl, it will be interesting to see how that pans out in future. Overall its a decent read though i didn't think it was quite as good as the last few volumes.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

MV : "Fever" by Screen Vinyl Image

Nice bit of electro-noise.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Hearts Under Fire - letters EP

Debut single in a limited run of 250 (mine is #192). Hearts Under Fire produce good old punk rock pop with plenty of youthful exuberance. Maybe not the most original of songs but well performed all the same.

Best tracks of the four are for me "Its not me, its you" which is a good fast rock song with a driving chorus and the slightly slower and more understated "Light my way" which also has a good chorus full of rock pop punky thrills. Good harmonies as you'd expect from an all female band. I like this single a lot though i think they are only at the start of their journey.

MV : "Lucky star" by Madonna

Something a little bit different to the usual indie fare. Bless her leg warmers!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Zipper - last chance for friday's badge

Zipper are my favourite Spanish indie pop group, OK i admit i don't know that many Spanish indie pop groups but even if otherwise Zipper would still be up there at the top. Their music is simple, straightforward indie guitar pop with a punky edge. Not maybe the most original style but who cares when it is done so well as here?

This is fun music with energy and enthusiasm and no little skill. I like "Last chance" on this single, its a fast ride with lovely female vocals and harmonies accompanied by a jingle-jangle guitar fest. Simple formula but great!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Ride - leave them all behind

Classic era shoegaze produced some truly wonderful songs of which this single is surely one of them. An epic track in more ways than one. Layers of rock noise and psychedelic power scorch their way along through the track (and you have to stick to the full 8 minute long version, its the law).

This was the high-point of shoegaze, this song making the top 10 in the UK. Things really all went downhill after this.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

MV : "It's not me, it's you" by Hearts Under Fire

This rocks! I love the bit where she sings underwater, did she use the Century 21 trick though? This band you can invest in on My Major Company, and i have. Crowdfunded punk rock is the future?

Ceremony - rocket fire

Summing up Ceremony in one word is easy : noise. Feedback and reverb drenched melodies, but melodies there are. There is a pop heart to their ear splitting din. It may be buried fairly deep at times but it is there.

Are they named after the New Order song? Unknown (and i am too lazy to find out) but they don't sound anything like them anyway, even on a song calld "regret"! This actually is Ceremony down to a tee, layers of noise atop a fairly catchy tune.

"Stars fall" is much the same, maybe the fuzz is tuned up another notch. The chorus is awesome, soaring above the din. There is an epic quality to their music, its definitely is a wall of noise hitting you in the face anyway.

Monday, February 14, 2011

MV : "I'm free" by The Soupdragons

Indie dance rap crossover. Important song in it's day, though that day does seem oddly long ago.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Maple Leaves - golden ether EP

I like this band a lot, they released this EP late last year on Bubblegum and i fell in love with their slightly folk-y and rooty indie pop immediately. The title track is a great showcase for Anna Miles' voice and is backed perfectly with a semi-acoustic backing. The tune is very infectious for sure and has been stuck in my head ever since i first found the song on Youtube a week ago!

Best song though may be "Drunk at the pulpit" which has some great humour to it and some great lyrics as well as a bit of a more classic rock feel. Best single i've bought for ages, ok i don't buy that many singles but even if i did this would stand out as something special.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Wicked Wiles of Iznogoud

Even if you didn't know this was written by René Goscinny who also wrote Asterix you would feel there is something very familiar about Iznogoud. Like Asterix it is a cleverly written comic rammed full of madcap adventures, satire and puns and clever word play. Unlike Asterix however Iznogoud is no hero.

Instead, and rather refreshingly, Iznogoud is a villain. As Grand Vizer he is endlessly scheming to remove the Caliph in the ancient Baghdad in which they both live and rule himself ("become Caliph instead of the Caliph"). Unfortunately for himself (but fortunately for the rather useless Caliph) he is too evil for his own good and often gets carried away with his schemes. Thus his cunning plans always fail but that doesn't stop him trying again.

Reading Iznogoud made me laugh out loud several times, sometimes the puns and names are just to be believed and score highly on the cheese and corn-ometer (once i'm sure there was something about the Kurds being "a-whey"). However that just adds to the magic of Iznogoud itself. Its a great and funny read.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Kyte - dead waves

Kyte started off considered a shoegaze band though their sound has evolved a bit by the time of this album, their third and latest. They've added a lot more electronics to their music and become poppier though there is still a post-rock edge to their music. "Ihnfsa" for example has an electro beat, a driving melody and almost-whispered vocals.

"The smoke saves lives" is more "shoegaze-y" (if that can be a word?), with its delicate melody that erupts into a bigger rock moment. "Fear from death" sounds almost like New Order at times, thats never a bad thing. There is an electro-pop backbone to their music but still plenty of atmosphere and delicate melody. This album is a winner. It is not a pure shoegaze album, its so much more.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

MV : "Everso" by The Telescopes

Taken from a rather dodgy video recording i guess, i think its adds to the trippy feel though in this case!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Catherine Wheel - black metallic

Well its a shoegaze classic of course. Slow and deliberate melody, building chorus. Actually i didn't get this single for a few years after its original release. I was visiting a friend in Cheltenham who was a cool indie kid while i was still learning the ropes. He helped me track down this single and find a second-hand Slowdive t-shirt. Ahh happy days. T-shirt has long gone, at least i still have this.

Anyway the single is great of course, one of those songs you can listen to over and over and never tire of shaking your floppy fringe to.