BURNING CONDORS – Honey Trap
Is this blues, rock, punk? Genres can be so misleading. What this is is a grab you by the ears and not let you go track, from the opening drums you know something good is coming, and as the rest of the instruments join in you realise you were right to carry on listening. This sounds dirty, and dirty in a good way. When music conjures images in your mind it is the best feeling, and this has bottles of American brand liquor and cigarettes all over the floor of those images. Look them up on line, one of the best covers of Folsom Prison Blues can be found there.
EMPTY POOLS – Small Talk
Empty Pools formed in Bristol towards the end of summer 2011. Their stated aim was to combine elements of noise rock with teen dream melodies, late ’70s CBGB’s angularity and the sophistication of the Thrill Jockey set. Their track ‘Vanderbilt Cup’ already made our Fresh Faves here at FOTN last April and was also featured on Tom’s Introducing Mixtape and Saturday night shows. This track Small Talk will be released as their second single for Battle Records (Frenchkiss Label Group) on March 11 2013, and they’re currently working on a debut album.
FELDSPAR – The Flat And Paper Sky
An amazing and haunting acapella track by Feldspar certainly caught the attention of many on the listening post this week. As it gets going it seems to end, leaving you instantly wanting to hear more. The sub 2 minutes here is just not enough of this as an introduction to this band. Describing themselves as “Songs, not gimmicks” this track proves their point, and maybe that is why it stood out so much, something truly wonderful to listen to, without needing to dissect it?
FELIX HAGAN & THE FAMILY (feat LOUIS BARABBAS) – My Little Lusitania
Prolific and varied would be one way to describe Felix after searching the net for more information, and this track with an historical reference means music and learning are linked here. The slightly gravelly vocals sit over the at first listen quite basic swing based tune telling a love story it seems, but further listens show the music has more too it, and the story grows more complex and emotions run high. This is one of the rare records that does sound different the more you listen to it, and that is to the credit of Felix – look and listen to more of his output, you will enjoy.
FLASH BANG BAND – DananananaFreud
With the hardest to pronounce track name of the week, this offering from the Brighton based band – I have to assume – is a reference to a band they supported a while back, the infuriatingly named Danananaykroyd. There is an endearing sound to them, they sound like they are enjoying themselves more than many bands do, and attracting tags like acidic / garage and long lists of rave reviews of their live shows they are definitely on my list to check out this year, both live and on record.
PAUL HEGLEY BAND – I’m On Fire
Rock ‘n Roll, it doesn’t need to be complicated and overproduced, sometimes just a decent tune and some lyrics are all that is needed, and that is what you get here. In no way a criticism, the sound is as he wants it to be, and as I imagine it to be live as well. This is music that fits into almost all times, and as such would be hard to date, but he is making it now, and it is worth having a listen to, as this weeks post has shown
RANDOLPH SWAIN & THE RED LIGHTS – The Moonlight Burnt my Skin
Based in Manchester, or outer-space, it is hard to tell. This is part of an on-going story / saga of a space trip, a banged head and documenting a journey to the planet Eris in music. As confused as this may sound, this track does stand on its own as well as part of a bigger picture. With a true individual sound and voice that at the same time seems familiar this is a band to look to for something different in 2013. With less of the same, this is a welcome addition to any music collection.
SLAVES – Nervous Energy
Only two members in this garage / punk / skin sounding band. One of those where so much noise from two people seems somehow impossible. This has the energy and attitude that you know instantly is not a front and they mean to shake things up. This is a “genre” of music that gets little if any mainstream play in the UK, and it is a great shame, as hearing this in the middle of a bland radio show would make everyone pay attention – as you should. This is available on a pay what you like download, get it and put your music player on shuffle until it comes up.
STEEL TREES – Follow The Crowd
For me a blast back to what I used to call “thrash”, which still describes this amazing track. Pulling no punches these noisemongers are making the music that scares those who hear it for the first time, and that can only be to their credit. Loud and crunchy, with a chorus that crowds would shout along to while fist pumping, this is a track to get you to a gig, where I feel the intensity of the recorded version would be amplified ten fold. Dip in, try something new, you may just like it.
TESSERA SKIES – Milieu
The piano and the looping sounds drag you in to this, and while not comparing them directly there is an element of Sigur Ros where the tune seems to have been in your mind always. Building as it grows to a climax that is not an explosion but a requirement to try again. The music coming from this three piece group from the North East will find its way into your collections this year, and your headphones will thank you for it when you are in need of a quality listen. With sold out gigs as support coming up, one can only hope people get there early to see them
THEATRE ROYAL – Death On The River
Something very English on this track, following in esteemed footsteps such as The Kinks and Blur, they just have that sound that can only come from here. A sound that would fit at the high end of “BritPop” with almost a country sound on the guitar this is music that is not thrown together, this is part of a bigger plan. Two albums in and getting noticed and reviewed nationally as well as on the indie scene now, surely this could be one of the sounds of 2013.
WILLIE DICK – I Will Be Your Juliet
New and different is a lot of what is looked for here, and I would say this fits into those categories. In his own words “Imagine you were dying… Imagine you were afraid, a long way from home and in terrible pain”. Now, it is not like that at all, some down and dirty lyrics over some unique beats, this is very hard to describe but very easy to listen to, but you will feel differently at the end. Hopefully interested enough to look up some more of his work – read his song manifesto and then keep going.
YOUNG ASTRONAUT – Hey Little Ghost
Embracing the new music ethos, the album is available for exchange of an email address, so you would be foolish not to jump in to this. Acoustic and folk are terms bandied around the web for this band, neither of which let you guess at the depths of music that they are making. | It is clear to see why so many people would pick this from a long list as vocals blend in with the music in such a pure way that the music would sound wrong without them. A growing number of fans and reviews for them would indicate that the break is not too far away now, get in first.
This week’s fresh Faves reviewed
by Team Freshnet’s Simon Jones
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…