This week’s Fresh Faves are reviewed by special guest Andy Von Pip from The Von Pip Musical Express:
Hello! Thought I’d better quickly introduce myself, I’m Andy from the Von Pip Musical Express Blog. We’ve been around for about five years and spend most of our waking hours immersed in new music! We’re based in Liverpool, but the music we feature pays no heed to post codes or lines drawn on maps – our ethos is simple if we love it, we feature it. This coming week you’ll find me wandering around Liverpool Sound City festival, so if you are attending do say hello, I won’t bite (unlike a certain footballer) ! But that’s enough about me let’s get down to this week’s Fresh net faves
CLASSIC PLASTIC – Bucket and Spade Escapade
Apparently, this track was already featured as a Fresh Fave back in November last year and it’s somehow managed to creep back in its stocking feet again! Saying that it’s obviously popular and the people have spoken. I’m getting a definite XTC, Electric Soft Parade feel here, plus a bit of early Blur Brit pop, and even a dash of The Dandy Warhols. Although it’s a tune that wears its influences on its sleeve, it doesn’t actually sound retro in the slightest!
DARK DARK HORSE – Mercury Nevada
Not to be confused with Brighton’s enigmatic Dark Horses, Dark Dark Horse have already previously impressed Mr Freshnet himself, Tom Robinson, and on the basis of ‘Mercury Nevada’ the reason why is fairly self evident. This is quite simply a wonderful dark, slow building elegiac electronic symphony with a vocal that manages to sound pragmatic yet wistful.… Whoever said electronic music was cold and unemotional was clearly a buffoon.
DARK PATRICK – Cotton Mouse
There’s a spooky Tubular Bells style atmosphere to this track which boasts elements of electro, trip hop and eastern european folk music all bubbling under the surface. With such disparate influences, it’s rather difficult to pin this down to a particular genre. This may explain just why the band who consists of Ukrainian Eva Purpurovska and Englishman Paul Chilton describe the genre on their Soundcloud account as simply ‘eclectic’. Moreover, I guess when you fuse Bandura, Hurdy-Gurdy, Uilleann Pipes, Whistles, Harmonicas , Synthesized sounds and spacey electronica what else could you call it 😉
KID KIN – Le Prieur Rockets
‘What we tend to forget is music is often felt as well as heard,’ so says Pete Lloyd aka Kid Kin and he’s certainly succeeded in producing music that does exactly that. This is soaring wide-screen cinematic Sigur Rós meets Public Service Broadcasting post rock ambience of the highest order. If I were to go all Paul Morley, I’d probably talk about “transcendental beauty” and such like. ‘Le Prieur Rockets’ is proof positive that egregious caterwauling and the “power ballad” are not the only ways to express emotion via music. Subtly and depth are often far more rewarding and there’s something rather noble and moving about this tune.
The inspiration for the song is French Lieutenant Yves Le Prieurs who invented rockets to be fired from French or British biplanes against German observation balloons during world War I. ‘Le Prieur Rockets’ is taken from Kid Kin’s self released début album ‘New Dusk at Dawn’
KILL FOR COMPANY – Black and White
Being from Liverpool I run the risk of being chased into the Mersey by a puce-faced pitchfork/ torch wielding mob, but it has to be said the current Manchester music scene is without doubt one of the strongest in the country. I’ll have to add Michael Banfield and Mark O`Donoughue, aka Kill For Company to my list of Mancunian bands to keep an ear out for as this tune is hugely impressive. Rather like Blood Red Shoes, it’s hard to believe that just two people can produce such a huge fully formed sound! Apparently, they’ve also created a hybrid guitar/bass – a Guibass, or maybe a Basstar (d)? This is essentially a lead guitar with two bass strings at the low end. I’ll be checking them out via their Soundcloud, which you can access like all the other artists here- via the link below.
MOSQUITO – (the) Fall
It seems to be the week of musical duos, this time in the shape of Kevin Imbrechts and Nico Kennes collectively known as Mosquito. Hailing from Belgium, they whip up a paranoid edgy post apocalyptic musical storm and sound like the sort of act who’d be extremely impressive live!
NATIVE TONGUE – Between Heaven & Hell
I like a good anecdote, so if you’re sitting comfortably..I’ll begin …Legend has it that Native Tongue were invited to tour with Kaiser Chiefs despite never actually having played a solitary gig before! Their drummer Josh Williams worked for a dog sitting company and as chance would have it, Kaiser Chiefs drummer Nick Hodsgon was one of the clients. Inevitably, their conversations turned from Barbara Woodhouse and Victoria Stilwell towards music and when Josh played Nick one of the bands demos he decided pretty much on the spot to invite them on tour! And if ‘Between Heaven And Hell’ is indicative of what Native Tongue have to offer they certainly wouldn’t have sounded out of place on the bigger stage! Epic and anthemic without ever sounding bombastic or trite!
SKINNY DREAM – Alloa
One of my fave tracks amongst another outstanding selection of tunes on Fresh on the net. With ‘Aloha’ Southend’s Skinny Dream have created a perfectly realised shoegaze anthem, full of yearning, imbued with a fluid hypnotic languid kind of grace. It’s as hazy and shimmering as the summer sun refracting off a calm undulating ocean.
STILL CAVES – Dutch
I’m a sucker for scuzzy garage guitars and so this tune has an obvious appeal for me. Its raw and ramshackle but it sounds alive and also gives the impression the band are having an absolute blast. Still Caves may have been selling themselves a little short when they said ‘ I don’t think we really write songs -we just play.’ Yet in a world where everything is airbrushed and polished to within an inch of its life spontaneity is frequently the first causality. It’s all very well trying to manufacture a perfectly produced moment, but often the best music is produced by happy accident and a willingness to experiment – Not via a focus group meeting 🙂
ZORZILLA – CALMER WATERS
This gets better after every listen; initially I was going to suggest the vocal had a kind of Anika style sensibility until I discovered that the vocalist is actually a chap! Ooops!
‘Calmer Waters’ has a distinct ethereal psychedelic atmosphere but this appears to be something of a one off in Zorzilla’s musical canon. The bands other tunes available on line are far more explosive, incendiary affairs and listening to tracks such as ‘Empower‘ and ‘Freedom’ actually conjures up Liam Gallagher fronting Queens of the Stone Age.
Fresh Faves reviewed by
Andy Von Pip from the
Von Pip Musical Express
PS from TR: 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…