Artists at a glance
THE VAN T'S
These Fresh Faves were picked by our readers over the weekend – and reviewed this week by new music lover, festival enthusiast and perennial red-hat-wearer, Fresh On The Net’s ‘Oldie’ Rob Ball. You can hear all these tracks in a single Soundcloud playlist here.
What a lovely week to be the reviewer. I think this playlist would happily appear in its entirety when I am doing a between-act-set at a festival this summer…
CI-RR-US – Glint
This is one to put your headphones on, sit in your favourite seat and close your eyes to. Let yourself get transported away with a soundtrack like backing and haunting vocals. A reviewer’s nightmare when the act has very little online but then I realised that Ci-rr-us is a one off collaboration. The soundtrack belongs to Transgressor and those haunting vocals belong to Caoilfhionn Rose. It looks like she has packed up everything and is heading on a European wander, busking along the way with no end date. We wish her an enlightening time and look forward to hearing from her when she returns…
FENNE LILY. – Top To Toe
Fenne Lily has one of those voices that is so delicate, I was immediately reminded of early Lucy Rose. People listen to music in many ways and for me it is driven by the bass, then the melodies and finally the lyrics but Fenne’s vocals on Top To Toe demand you to listen. I won’t give too much away but would recommend you listen hard to this story. Fenne is appearing this summer at Larmer Tree and Farm Festival – and I would expect many more next year.
HEAVY HEART – Pretty Thing
Heavy Heart are an alt-rock band from London who are curently mid-project with the aim of releasing a new single every month. This month’s dealing with gender misconceptions is, in my opinion, the best so far, and I already liked the others! It will appeal to fans of Shoegaze and Grunge. Other than releasing a single a month, it looks like this 5 piece will next be playing Greenstone Festival 2016 in August.
HOMELESS BILLIONAIRES – Marvellous Beasts
Homeless Billionaires are a drum and guitar duo. So yes: cracking drums and really strong riffs. Often this format can be thrash, thrash and a bit more thrash but these guys have developed a track with quite a bit of texture and it takes you on a journey. Seems like they are just starting out and I can imagine will be excellent live. Unfortunately I can’t find any future gigs announced yet. Here is hoping that they will be gigging soon, the red hat needs to hear these guys.
LOVESPEAKE – Tightrope
All great mixtapes should have a big shift in direction and these guys have provided that. Lovespeake make glorious Electropop direct from Norway. It’s fun, full of disco feel, and got a lot of groove. Get your dancing shoes on and I defy you to not move whist listening. Now I am heading out to Norway this week, but when I had a hopeful look to see if they were playing Oslo, I actually found out that they are playing my home town Reading on Wednesday, London’s The Islington on Thursday, and Koko on Friday. Look out for the RED HAT. Looks like it will be getting a trip to Reading on Wednesday!
LUNABLIND – Rio Gin
This is Indie Indie with jangly guitars a plenty and great vocals. What more could this Indie boy (geriatric) ask for? Oh ok could I have a track that broodily builds into a glorious anthemic ending? Boom. Thanks guys. Lunablind are a 4 piece from Leeds with a new EP out and. It looks like they will next be performing at a Brudenell Social all-dayer on 30th July.
MODERN STUDIES – Dive Bombing
Modern Studies are a chamber-pop band from Glasgow-via-Yorkshire. Now I am not sure what a chamber pop band is if I am honest… What I can tell you is that this is a multi-instrumentalist group with analogue synths, cello, double bass, drums, guitars, a wine-glass orchestra and, at the creaking centre of things, a Victorian pedal harmonium. It has a 1970s Americana folk hippy feel to it. Very nice!
I don’t seem to be able to find out much about them on the interweb which is a shame as their Soundcloud page says they are festival-ing this summer and I can’t tell you where.
OLA SZMIDT – Apnea
Now this is difficult for me. As a fellow FOTN moderator I know Ola. So when I saw she had uploaded this week my heart sank a little… I see it that we should act totally unbiased, take it as we see it and nothing more, as we ask you our readers to be. So when I saw Ola had uploaded I was very consciously preparing myself to perhaps be ‘tough’ and then after 10 seconds those chocolatey rich vocals drop in and I was ‘all in’. It was like the first time I heard Hannah from London Grammar. Ola specialises in live looping and electronics using voice, flute, toys, detuned guitars and ethnic instruments. She isn’t gigging much at the moment, more is the shame, but she is hosting open mic sessions at The Basement, York where she is determined it will be open mic for musicians hosted by a musician.
THE VAN T’s – Blood Orange
Blood Orange is a classic rock track with fuzzy guitar riffs, a throbbing bass line, crashing drums and passionate vocals, what more could one ask for? Well it seems FOTN listeners couldn’t ask for any more – they were sated and voted accordingly. The Scottish 4 piece also have a strong ’90s influence. Unfortunately, it seems there are no upcoming gigs from The Van T’s which is a big mistake on behalf of this year’s festival bookers/spotters (including myself!)
TOURISTS – Quiet Room
Last but far from least are Tourists, a 5 piece from Torquay with a psych-pop feel to their tune Quiet Room. A lovely guitar solo in its midst, a bit of layering and a lovely gentle vocal, nothing is forced here – it just flows. The guys are mainly playing around the South West over the next few months including Exeter Respect Festival this Sunday and an excursion to London on 1st July to play The Sebright Arms. Hopefully see you there!
PS from TR: If you’ve submitted a track that hasn’t been picked for the Listening Post, our team has definitely listened to it and there’s no need to send it again: feel free to send us an even stronger track another week. The same goes if you were picked for the Listening Post but didn’t feature in our Fresh Faves.
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.