Photo above: Fennel Seeds
Advance warning: Team Freshnet will be taking a two week break over Christmas/New Year. Our last two Listening Posts of 2014 will be on the weekends of 12-14 and 19-21 Dec. Our dropbox will be closed from Thursday 18 Dec until Monday 5 Jan 2015.
FENNEL SEEDS – Under My Skin
We all know that music travels a long way (even further since the internet) but it amazes me to how close to home the source can be. Carwyn ‘Caz’ Ginsberg aka Fennel Seeds is based in Snowdonia only a stone’s throw away from my base in Beddgelert. His brother Mattie Ginsberg was recently reviewed on Fresh Faves 129 by Johnno. It must be something to do with the genes because no amount of Snowdonia water could purify or stagnate this raw talent. Under My Skin has a laid-back approach but certainly delivers an almighty punch. Prominent riff filled with grungy vocal goodness!
GOLD SPECTACLES – Lately
Gold Spectacles is the elusive collaboration of two British songwriters/producers who formed in 2012 and are based in London. They describe their writing as being “sample-based alternative pop music” and their influences as ranging from Paul Simon to Phoenix. What comes out of the speakers is a polished track that oozes appeal. No wonder that the listening public could not get enough of it lately.
KITXCH – Wolves
Their Soundcloud page tells us that KitXch is a duo comprising of Kit Xch and Pedro Mark III from Jakarta in Indonesia. Confusingly, the mis-typed Twitter link there points to a completely unrelated coder and tech guy in London called Richard K. But never mind the mixup: what counts is the track of course – and Wolves is a fine tune with minimal arrangement and sweet harmonies.
MOTH EFFECT – Look Nicely
If music was a source of light, this track would certainly draw you towards it and fixate you. Not revealing his human identity, Moth Effect coasts across the cosmos on a solitary musical mission. I’ve got a strong liking towards tracks that consists of one main riff (or note) while other wonderments meander within it – and this tune certainly does that to great effect. Influences include Krautrock, Spacerock, 60s Psych and electronic music. Moth Effect – not to be confused with the German metal band of the same name – is based in Sussex when not on his space journeys, and will be releasing his first album Crocodilians on Sunstone Records early next year. Full of drones, fuzz and oscillators – well worth a listen!
PAUL COOK & THE CHRONICLES – Night Fires
Paul Cooke is an alternative singer and songwriter from London who describes himself as “neither a drummer nor Sex Pistol” though he has been known to enjoy both. While, according to Paul Cook & The Chronicles, Night Fires is not a seasonal offering, it still manages to capture the Christmas mood – it must be subliminal. A very tasty track to whet your appetite. More of this please!
RECORD/START – Rock From Afar
Record/Start is the solo project of Simon Cowan who resides in Brighton. He has over 100 unreleased demos and he records, produces and performs all his songs from his own home studio. Prior to Record/Start, Simon used to be the singer and songwriter for Manchester alternative band Carlis Star who gained regular BBC national radio plays and performed at leading summer festivals around the UK. Rock From Afar certainly holds promise for his solo career.
THE MATINÉE IDLES – Wonderful
A beautiful flowing intro bathed in strings before Kevin Barry aka The Matinée Idles comes in with soothing vocals. Formed in Dublin,the name came from Kevin’s love of film. He released his second Matinée Idles album A Festival Of Colours – which received rave reviews – on his own record label 4 Cats, the Bird & the Baby. Kevin then went on and signed a 3 year licensing deal with a U.S. publishing company who have placed songs in films including Brokeback Mountain and A Beautiful Mind… Wonderful indeed!
THE RECKS – Stranger
One of the great things about FOTN’s Listening Post is the variation of submissions that we have the pleasure to listen to. This offering from The Recks – who are Wez Coombes, Richey Powers, Ash Jarman, Attila Nagy and Barney Winter – could be tagged under the ‘peculiar’ genre which makes it both good and refreshing. Enough to scare small children – and some adults of a nervous disposition. I could see this track being a part of a musical such as a modern version of The Rocky Horror Show or Bugsy Malone – albeit with a completely different theme. Hailing from the Channel Island of Sark, The Recks provide that something different to the music scene and I love it!
THE WAITERS – The Party Song
Let the party begin – it’s a pleasure to listen to such a young band with so much talent! Aged between 16 and 21, Adam, Dan, Jack and Martin have already caught the eye of major record labels. The Waiters have supported acts such as The Honeys, Liberty X, B*Witched and Shayne Ward before selling out their own headline gig. If you love bands such as You Me At Six then it’s possible that you’ll love this band even more. Now busy recording their debut E.P. and planning to tour the UK in 2015. We will be hearing more from them!
94 GUNSHIPS – Dig A Hole
Oh how I wish that all artists and bands would supply us with some sort of information about themselves! Sadly, the only info for 94 Gunships on their Soundcloud page is: ‘Hello, welcome to 94 Gunships’. Come on guys, your song deserves better than that! As the lyrics to their song goes – “dig a hole, hope you find what you’re looking for”. Sadly, I couldn’t.
ARTISTS: If you’ve submitted a track that hasn’t made the Listening Post you’re welcome to re-submit it another week. If your music has appeared on the Listening Post but not in our Fresh Faves, feel free to send us an even stronger track another week.
But if we’ve recently featured you in our Fresh Faves – or on my BBC Introducing Mixtape – please wait three months before sending us another track, so we have space to help other deserving artists… For more info see Robinson Has A Good Old Moan.