Fresh Faves: Batch 147

A Band Called Quinn

Here are this week’s Fresh Faves – chosen by our readers over the weekend and reviewed by Team Freshnet moderator Jim Craigen from AlternativeFriday.com. You can hear all these tracks in a single Soundcloud playlist here.

As always, we had a high quality and wonderfully eclectic mix in the Listening Post at the weekend, and so thank you to the musicians who submitted tracks, and the voters who trimmed the 25 selected songs down to the 10 that make this week’s Fresh Faves. They take us from cinematic folk to afrobeat, via the genre-schizophrenic and Judy Garland! Oh, and we need YOUR help to write a bio for Basil too. Thanks.

A BAND CALLED QUINN – Drive With Your Eyes Closed

Fronted by songwriter and vocalist Louise Quinn, A Band Called Quinn are an artpop band from Glasgow, noting that they “mix up film, theatre & music like space socks at a psychedelic laundrette”. In this case, ‘artpop’ can be expanded to be described as shoegaze or electro pop, while the various remixes (on Soundcloud) of Drive With Your Eyes Closed would happily keep dance floor revellers busy. The band also note their interests as “alien abduction, conspiracy theories, warped realities, and golf”, all of which I concur with, except for the one that ruins a good walk.

Official | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

BANGBANGROMEO – Johannesburg

Is Johannesburg a modern anthem or a 60’s influenced classic? Either way, Yorkshire band Bank Bang Romeo have produced a rousing and soulful gem, with powerful vocals, booming brass, and a highly addictive chorus which sucks you in. If it’s not yet coming through your hi-fi speakers, I’m sure this track will be coming out of your telly speakers in an advert or TV show sometime soon.

Official | Soundcloud | Twitter | YouTube

BASIL BOARBRUS – Lullaby

This is a charming folk lullaby, with warm vocals, soft acoustic guitar, and gentle lyrics which are sung to a newborn child;
If you dream
Dream one little thing for me
Not wars
Not glory or applause
There’ll be time for these of course
But for now dream little things…

It’s a delightful song, but at first I thought I wouldn’t be able to tell you anything about the highly mysterious Basil Boarbrus (he has no online presence, bar the one track) until I found out he was fellow moderator Louis Barabbas. Given his lack of online bio though, I suggest we all use the COMMENTS BOX at the bottom to create Basil’s bio for him! What could possibly go wrong?

Soundcloud

COLLOCUTOR – Gozo

According to their website, Collocutor means ‘a person taking part in a conversation’, and this 7-piece ensemble definitely seem to vary the musical conversation far and wide. They draw their influences from many places, such as jazz, afrobeat, Indian classical, Ethiopian roots, and choral music, which bring a wonderfully broad range of sounds to their music. Gozo could be filed under the jazz afrobeat section, with the mix of brass and percussion creating a moody atmosphere, and one where vocals are not required to give the song a journey, as the instrumentation works just fine.

Official | Twitter | YouTube | Bandcamp
Frog
FROG – Judy Garland

Confusion reigned at first. Surely she can’t be classed as an independent new music artist, and she sang about wizards, not frogs, didn’t she? It is therefore a good thing we use an ‘ARTIST – track’ formatting system here, so luckily I wasn’t confused for too long (it doesn’t take much!). Frog are a two man band from Queens, New York, comprising of Dan Bateman and Thomas White, and this cheerful alternative country track, which features distinctive but harmonious vocals and some contagiously animated instrumentation, definitely won over our voters at the weekend.

Official | Facebook | Twitter | Vimeo | Bandcamp

HODGES – All Up With You

Hodges are a virtual rock band, and so background information on them is a little sparse. On top of that, this loud and fuzzy track, which has highly appealing guitar and vocal melodies running through it… is sung in Japanese! Now my Japanese is a bit rusty, but I think I understood the first few lines, which are translated as;
One mistake followed another
The world that you believed in disappeared
But you are living now
The light went out

Impressed?
Okay, I’ll hold my hands up. My Japanese is non-existent, but thankfully the band’s Soundcloud page has the English translation of the lyrics, so I do recommend you head there to hear more of their entertaining tunes.

Official | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube
Hodges
PLASTIQUE – Quake

This energetic electro post-punk track from Anglo Brazilian trio Plastique certainly hits the spot if you like it loud. They’ve had two independently released albums, in 2011 and 2013, and Quake is the first release from their new material, which is exactly three minutes of attitude on an industrial scale, full of bruised lyrics and dark synth driven hooks. I wouldn’t play it to your nan.

Official | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

REBEL KITES – The Witnessing

With a genre perfectly self-described as “cinematic folk rock”, you could also add the words epic, breezy, and rousing, to the title track from Rebel Kites’ debut EP. It contains numerous musical layers, which include rich vocal harmonies and intricate guitar work among other stand out components, and the production certainly combines to bring everything to the fore with a seemingly effortless ease.

Official | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

TEAM MORALE – Totoro

Gaining recognition from the likes of BBC Radio’s Lauren Laverne and Abbie McCarthy, Clash and Q magazines, and now Fresh on the Net, Team Morale certainly stirred the voters with Totoro’s instrumental mix of ambient electro with subtle percussion. Team Morale is made up of Kent based George Cloke and Oli Dewdney, and this track comes from their 5-track Satori EP. Ideal for late night dance-floor revellers.

Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Bandcamp

TSINDER ASH – Weapons

Described fondly by one of my moderating colleagues as “mad as a box of sharks”, and with his own bio noting he’s a “genre-schizophrenic multi-instrumentalist and singer who blends off-kilter melodies and dark lyrics with vocals traversing from a deep blues to whimsical folk”, there seems little point in me trying to compete with that. I’ll just add that Weapons comes from London based Tsinder Ash’s latest EP; The Carbon Of Your Delight. It’s very impressive, quite unique, and yes, mad as a box of sharks.

Official | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Bandcamp

PS from TR: 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.

Jim Craigen

I am a St. Albans based new & vintage music lover, and relatively tall person. Coming across great new artists and their music is a passion, which is how I came across Fresh on the Net in the first place. I am also a keen buyer of vinyl, mosh pit visitor, and consumer of Guinness, and I can also be found on Twitter @bigjimcambo

11 Comments

  1. The 10 tracks with the most votes were of an excellent quality this week, which made the write-up all the more enjoyable. As for Basil…

    Basil was at a fairly young age when he first got into ringwit managars.

  2. We want to thank everyone at Fresh on the Net and for the brilliant comments! You could not get fresher than us, we are all teenagers and our drummer Michael is only 16. To have been short listed from the 171 reviewed songs has given more people a chance to hear our music and hopefully they will go on and check out our website to learn more about us. We are playing quite a few gigs in the Midlands and we hope anyone local will come and see us and introduce themselves to the band. We loved listening to all the short listed tracks and will be following the bands.

  3. Great Tracks & Lovely words Jim :-D xo
    #Love #Hodges

  4. Well done to all the Faves. Such a strong week, I had real problems compiling my shortlist, some truly excellent stuff in there.
    Nice job on the reviews Jim. Sorry Basil wasn’t more forthcoming with his biography, let’s hope people can fill in the blanks for him!

  5. Kim

    Another excellent week – such a strong set of entries so undeniably hard to narrow down!

  6. Steve Harris

    Great reviews Jim! And well done to everyone in the Faves, it was a great week.

    Basil Boarbrus is a freak genetic mutation that evolved from the decomposing slime created by a tragic road accident, in which talking fox and children’s TV star, Basil Brush, was flattened by a bus driven by a boar. His music, however, is anything but boaring (Boom Boom!) etc, etc, etc.

    I’ll get my coat.

  7. Tip top job Big Jim

    Music to swoon to

  8. Cheers Jim,

    As to Basil, having read 400 “the great escape” bios recently I feel I can offer some expertise.

    Basil Boarbus is a duo from Upper Transalvania who met due to their mutual love of the TV programme “The Krypton Factor” Their sound is an experimental project of an eclectic style which might be described as soulful electronic/abstract hip-hop/post punk /rockart fusion. Their passion to modernist architecture and the follies of human dischord has lead them to develop repetitive soaring melodies likened by many to Elvis Moody Blues of The Magic Roundabout fame. Expect them to be headlining festivals soon

  9. What a cracking bunch of tunes. A pleasure indeed.

    Also hats off to Mr Big. Nice one Jim. :-)

Trackbacks for this post

  1. Fresh Faves Review | Alternative Friday
  2. Fresh Faves: Batch 147 (Fresh On The Net) | Collocutor

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