Our Fresh Faves are reviewed this week by Jim Craigen from AlternativeFriday.com
An excellent and varied array of music made up the 30 tracks in the Listening Post this week. All these tracks had strong support over the weekend: big thanks to everyone who took the time to listen carefully to all the tunes and pick their five favourities. These are the 11 most-liked tracks, listed in alphabetical order. Enjoy…. [to see the full list click Read More]
BETHANY WEIMERS – 30000 Days
She has a beautiful voice, and knows how to write music that is melodic and enjoyable. Bethany Weimers was, possibly, best summed up earlier this year when her sound was referred to as “think Florence without the Machine, or Kate Bush in a cathedral” by no lesser music website than… Fresh on the Net!
CARNABELLS – Station Road
You can’t help but tap your feet and play air drums or piano when listening to Station Road. The Carnabells are a Leeds based 5-piece, created by brothers Luke and Mitch Thompson, and tell us “the brothers finally decided to write music together after years of arguments and threatening to smash their guitars over each other’s heads”. They were brought up in an old mining village in the heart of Yorkshire, where they fell upon a sound with its heart and soul in traditional rock n roll.
ENFANT – Border Of Mexico
Rather than fight like the Gallagher brothers, there’s more sibling cohesion again here in Enfant, an electronic music duo from London, consisting of twin brothers Ali and Robin Owen. They seem to be focusing their energy on making powerful electronic dance music instead of having a dust up, and the results are definitely worth a listen. Border of Mexico is their second release and comes out on December 3rd.
JEMMA TWEEDIE – Draw The Line
Jemma Tweedie is a young singer/songwriter from Scotland whose passion for creating her own music started “after receiving my first guitar at Christmas”. Beautiful vocals and guitar are not enough without a great song writing ability, and based on Draw The Line she is definitely one to watch. Her 3 track EP Two Hands is available from October 26th.
LOUIS BARABBAS & THE BEDLAM SIX – Three Down, Four To Go
Louis Barabbas & the Bedlam Six are a 6-piece band that formed in 2006 and while they come from all over UK, they currently reside in Manchester. They characterise themselves as “penning twisted dirt-swing about lust and loathing, served up on an exuberant gobbet of malicious delight”, which is a more lyrical description than anything I could have come up with! They do come across as though they’d be an excellent live band too, and I’m guessing they must be, as in the past year they’ve toured Europe, The USA, and Mexico.
NECHAMABRODIE – Hungry Love
Where to start when telling you about Nechama Brodie? Well… her website notes that she lives in Johannesburg, however in 15 years as a journalist she has dodged the secret police in Burma (after interviewing Aung San Suu Kyi), dressed-up for South African fashion week, written articles about books, music, arts, culture, health, and lifestyle for numerous newspapers and magazines, including The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Marie Claire, & ELLE. Nechama also enjoys music, and after a 15-year break she recently returned to the stage. This track Hungry Love suggests her many talents certainly include songwriting and performing.
NO CEREMONY/// FeelSoLow
There’s so little information about Manchester’s No Ceremony – even on their own website – that even The Guardian’s New Band Of The Day was baffled. However they’re playing 3 live dates in France next month, so maybe there’s a clue there? Feel So Low has an excellent soft electro vibe, but with a piano overlay and lush vocals that will have this song doing circuits of your head for quite some time, and it’s a popular tune too, as it’s had over 11,000 plays on Soundcloud – perhaps because of heavy action in the last year on Hype Machine. The track has been available as a free download from their website since Monday 15th October and had an official release date of Monday 19th November 2012.
SENSORITES – Fool
There’s very little information on the Liverpool band Sensorites either. Fool is a great country flavoured piece of indie folk, which is a slight change in sound from some of their previous work, such as the single Slipstream, so they’d be well worth further investigation. The trouble is, as Tom’s Fresh On The Net guide to writing a band biog points out, if you don’t let people know what’s interesting or special about your group they’ll rapidly move on to someone else who does.
THE RISE OF GENERAL MEZMAR -The Lucid Dream
Same problem here. If a band put zero info on their MySpace and don’t use Facebook or Twitter, we can’t tell you anything about them. All we know is that The Rise of General Mezmar are a Wirral based outfit. I can hear an influence in The Lucid Dream but I’m struggling to place it, and so far all I’ve come up with is Cold War Kids featuring Noel Gallagher on guitar! If you can pin it down better than me then answers please on a postcard – or in a comment at the bottom of this page.
THE ROUGH CUTS – Brown Cigar
The Rough Cuts come from Winchester here in the UK, and again further information on them was pretty sparse. Don’t let that put you off this track though, as ‘Brown Cigar’ is a truly catchy song. It begins as a rock n roll indie track before veering off to take in a reggae skank beat. Add on the enjoyable sing-a-long lyrics and you’ve a highly addictive track. They list their interests on Facebook as “Drinking, football, drinking, musci and drinking” – the drinking has clearly had some effect on the, erm, “musci”.
X.O.V.A. – 9 Lives
Last but certainly not least, the Midlands continue its strong tradition of producing great ska and reggae bands. XOVA (pronounced “crossover” – see what they did there?) are a 7-piece from Birmingham, who describe their music as “indie-reggae”. This track 9 Lives is more ska/reggae though, and it mixes the classic Jamaican sound with a modern freshness and great horns that create this wonderful noise.
FROM TOM: If you’ve submitted a track that hasn’t made the Fresh Faves you’re welcome to re-submit it again. But if you have been a Fresh Fave in recent weeks could you possibly hold back for at least six weeks before sending us another one. If you keep sending us great tracks every week it leaves less room for new names who haven’t had a chance yet…