I am very sorry for the lack of posts recently; I am still at school and have had to put work before writing. I am in the process of writing new content that should be going up over the next few weeks. I also apologise for not doing a ‘This Week’s New Band’ post last week, I did start to write one, but it did not get finished in time so I just discarded it. I will try to be more reliable in the future and keep a steady stream of posts coming. Anyway, enough of me apologising and more music related scrawl.
The band that I found this week is called Big Scary. They are a duo from Melbourne and their music ranges from indie folk to a sort of garage rock. I first heard their song ‘The Apple Song’ last night and I quite liked it but wasn’t instantly won over. Then I listened to a few more songs and realised how amazing they are. They released their debut album, called Vacation, in Australia last year but it has not yet been released on iTunes so I am guessing it hasn’t been released in the UK either.
Big Scary’s music is generally indie pop though there are some rockier songs and some acoustic folk-sounding songs. I am not too keen on some songs, like ‘Tuesday is Rent Day’, but others, such as ‘Thinking About You’, are absolutely amazing. I think it is worth checking out the song ‘Microwave Pizza’ because, as well as being generally brilliant, it is the only song I have heard Jo Syme, the drummer, sing in and her voice is beautiful.
I haven’t been to any gigs so far this year and I’m a bit annoyed that I live in an area of very little good music. One of the next gigs I am going to go to is one of the dates of the NME Awards Tour. It is headlined by Two Door Cinema Club, then with Metronomy and Tribes also on the bill, I’m not that bothered about Azealia Banks. Because of this, I have been listening to Metronomy quite a lot recently, though I never gave ‘The English Riviera’ a proper listen when it first came out.
My favourite song is probably ‘Everything Goes My Way’, one of the few songs in which Anna Prior does the majority of the singing. She has a really good voice, and the song is slightly more subdued and less electro sounding than most of their other songs.
I first heard Metronomy on the TV ages ago; it was the video for ‘A Thing For Me’ that really got my attention. If you haven’t seen it, it basically is like karaoke, though the words are on people and objects, and a white ball comes out the sky and hits the people on the head, well sort of. I have put it below so you can watch it. Another video of theirs that is funny is the one for ‘Heartbreaker’, I can’t be bothered to explain it, so just go and find it.
I am not normally a massive fan of cover songs, original versions generally tend to be better, but recently I started listening to a cover of La Roux’s ‘In For The Kill’ by The Cheek. I don’t really like La Roux that much, but the cover is really good.
The song gets built up really nicely, starting off with a simple beat, and then more sounds get added into it. I prefer their voices as well, and the addition of guitars is a good touch; La Roux’s version is solely electro. The lyrics aren’t great, but that is not The Cheek’s fault.
It is a good cover; The Cheek make it their own instead of mindlessly copying the original, and it is a massive improvement. Well worth the four minutes and twenty seconds it takes to listen to it.
The Maccabees took a risk with their new album, they wrote songs individually and then combined them after a few months. The end result has polarized the music industry; NME gave the album 9/10, while Uncut gave it 2 stars. Is it an earlier contender for the album of the year or the first big disappointment?
Their risky decision could have paid off, instead they have created an album of cheap and tacky guitar pop with no guts and weak vocals. The songs lack hard gritty emotion and real drive, and at best they could be listened to for some thoughtless, meaningless entertainment. Saying this, not all the songs are cringe-worthy; ‘Ayla’ is okay and mildly enjoyable, as are a few others, but nothing outstanding. From the first song to the last, it is a bore. Given to the Wild is such a disappointment; The Maccabees have not really taken a risk, just resorted the bland and plain.
Katy Goodman from Vivian Girls’ side project, La Sera, will release a second album on March 24, called ‘Sees The Light’. It will have less of the dreamy harmonics of the last album, described by a press release as “more direct, more aggressive” and “peppy break-up pop brimming with defiance and bitter sweetness”. It will be released on Hardly Art.
Listen to ‘Please Be My Third Eye’
Still Corners released their debut album last year, titled ‘Creatures of an Hour’. It is an album of dream-like music, with ghostly vocals and simple retro-influenced rhythms. The band say that they are heavily influenced by different film styles, from Italian horror to French New Wave, and this comes across within the atmospheric organs and the ethereal sound. This album creates something different, a gentle calm in a hectic world.
Veronica Falls released their debut self-titled album in September. There is a clear 60s and 80s indie pop influence in their death-obsessed harmonics, and they don’t try to hide it. Almost all of the twelve songs feature death, from the romantics of ‘Found Love in a Graveyard’, to the suicide of ‘Beachy Head’. Putting the macabre aside, this is a brilliant album, with some killer vocals and great instrumentals. As I noted before, this is one of the best albums to be released in 2011.