Watch: Britt Rion – Chaos & Beauty

We get many submissions, some we care more for – in this case Britt Rion and her charming music-video, alongside an even more hypnotizing song: “Chaos & Beauty“. Some of the best music undoubtedly comes from down under, in this case New Zealand, as we’ve seen and heard with Fishrider Records way back in the past of this webzine.

At the first glance you might write it off as your regular pop-oriented blasphemy, but the further in you get – she sets a mood that diverts the attention from pop, into a marvelous metamorphosis of that, singer-songwriter and indie-pop. The catchiness is the only thing lent from regular pop, but the lyrics and intonation in her music is more subliminally beautiful – so she doesn’t have to resort to making a visual interpretation that reflects the vanity of regular pop music – it is a simple video that is Grime-esque in a sense – if you’ve seen one of her videos from “Genesis“.

Her voice is stunningly beautiful as well. We have to struggle not to move out of our own bleak hearts, it is as if a dystopian scenery quickly changes into a beautiful field and a forest full of local creatures singing in the day, when the sunlight hits your eyes and you’re with someone you love.

 

Lyssna: Baula, Stadens Brus

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Baula är tillbaka återigen med en låt inte helt olik deras förra, “Just Like Yesterday“, men i denna är det mer sväng och känslan andas svensk indie-pop mer än någonsin. Det finns en mer post-punkig vibb till denna i bemärkelsen att basen är tyngre, musiken koncentrerar sig mer kring det mörka, det obestämda. Även om utsvävelserna är få så finns de där för att påminna oss om det känslosamma som genomsyrar låten.

Nova” är ett steg i samma riktning, mot ett konkret mål och mot någonting större än vad de levererat hittills. Lyrikerna i låten är simplistiska men tjänar syftet till att sätta ett större fokus på musiken som sådan även om de tar upp en stor yta i låten. Sommarslutet hade väl inte kunnat sluta på ett mer passande vis? När vi nu tagit oss in i September känns det mer passande för detta mörker att tränga igenom. Låt oss få vägen dit visade av självaste Baula. När staden ekar tom så är dett vad som kan ljuda igenom. Omslaget är gjort av Fanny Valentin och låten spelades in av bandet tillsammans med Henryk Lipp i studio Music A Matic i Göteborg.

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Markus Hulthén har passat på att utvidga sitt musikaliska engagemang och rötterna har spridit sig till Stadens Brus – där han med hjälp av Henrik Öhberg (på trummor), Petter Lindhagen från Feeder Recordings (filtersvep) på mix och samproduktion av låten. Vad heter den? Jo, “Oväntat Möte”. Enligt honom själv är det ett försök att låta Etiopisk (Hailu Megra som inspiration), men det faller kort för en psykedelisk masspsykos.

Personligen tycker jag att det psykedeliska gärna får ta utrymme på bekostnad av vad han försökt att få det att låta som. Det är välproducerat, fint utskissat med tillfälle för utmärkta allegorier som passar sig bäst i ett underjordiskt zine. Tyvärr är det abstrakta konstverket som är omslaget tänkt att föreställa något (eller inte), en påminnelse om hur denna sorts musik inte borde gestaltas överhuvudtaget. Även om det psykedeliska gärna får influera musiken så gör det sig inte särskilt bra i övriga medium. Illustration av Andre Kleine. Denna låt släpps på Feeder Recordings och det går att lyssna här nedanför.

Listen: Fathers – 3 Songs

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Though everything in their graphic outlay doesn’t interest us the least, mostly because of the irritative pink color that drowns out everything else, we’re indeed satisfied not having to look at it close enough for too long. When it comes to their music—it’s is a cunning blend of three different genres—that would be extremely bland if they were to be separated. People can say anything they want about clichés, but the lyrical content is fairly good and is above average when combined with the overlapping electronic music they combine with bombastic, subliminal percussion which upholds the rest of their magnificence – alongside dreamy riffs, indie-pop melancholia and oddly enough – dark-wave.

The rhythms they’ve created entwine with the darker waves that break through, connecting them with the inherent structure of the lyrics and also the rest of the sound-scape. Whereas their name might be a bit odd when you think about it, Fathers can’t be held accountable for delivering yet another repetitious wreck of music. It’s actually inspiring and calming to hear everything come together as if it was meant to be. There’s a red line through and through, interestingly enough they have accomplished the near-impossible of connecting the dots almost perfectly in their first output. It wouldn’t be a surprise if they’re veterans when it comes to making music, but if they aren’t – it doesn’t really matter – because these three songs are masterpieces in and of themselves. One song is a beauty, the others are the beasts, but not nearly as ghastly as anything else you would pass by to find out about this release. Listen down below.

[8th] December: Red Mecca – Sunny Day

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A decade turned into another, quickly the 1980’s faded into oblivion and the 1990s was born—Cabaret Voltaire had their release “Red Mecca” put out on CD via Restless Records and Mute Records. Nine years earlier that album was released on Rough Trade Records, being a their fourth album if you ignore the “Live At The Y.M.C.A. 27.10.79” and “Live At The Lyceum” releases. Fast-forward eight years from 1990 and you get 1998—the same year Jan Strandqvist release a maxi-single under the name Red Mecca. Coincidence? I think not. We think there’s little doubt that Cabaret Voltaire’s name of their fourth album influenced him, when it came to choosing the name of his project. The maxi-single was called “Please Goddess” and got produced during the time Telegram Records Stockholm existed, first an independent Swedish label started in 1987, in the end of the 1990’s sold to Warner Music’s sub-division to WEA (Warner Elektra Atlantic). Now since some time back a defunct label.

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During the time-period where the label was still at least going forward, Red Mecca put out a song called “Underground” which was, at least for the Warner Music Sweden-release, written by Eric Svensson—co-founder of Sidelake Studios, gold & platinum selling producer and songwriter. When this solo-project which we suppose could be attributed to Jan Strandqvist alone, with some reservations, was in its first stages—the focus laid on House-music from what we can tell. A huge step away from what Red Mecca was to become, but we’re getting there. A maxi-CD called “Love Is A Savage Thing“, featuring the track with the same name and remixes of it, including a new version of “Underground” as a fourth track—Maria Ritzén of Stone Soul Picnic were the vocalist. The project itself seemed to be more of a project for Eric S as he is credited for remixing, but it’s hard to see where Jan comes in after this. Telegram Records closed down and went defunct. We’re in the 2000’s now, where it changed from the 21st Century to a millennium.

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The project wasn’t activated again until 2013. The same year, Frida Madeleine contributes to a Massproduktion compilation of interpretations by local creators for their latest vinyl-releases, the track is named “Frostjackan“—originally written and performed by the Swedish pop-band Indi. Somewhere along the lines they found one another and re-activated a long lost project which hadn’t been touched since 2000. Thirteen years later Frida Madeleine becomes the singer of Red Mecca—Jan Strandqvist the producer and machine-operator. The project changes completely from House to a combination of darkwave and indie-pop. The album “You Were Never Here” is released on Massproduktion as a CDr, featuring six tracks, one track called “Love & Hate“—with music by Anders Brodin, Henrik Brodin, Jan Strandqvist, Mikael Svensk and Peter Byström. Track three and four was written by Bonnie Rabson. Roughly a year later a proper album is released under the name “Covered With Rain“. The lyrics for all the songs are now written by Frida Madeleine, and she also made the music for “When It’s Empty“—the opening track. Jan Strandqvist produces the release, creates the cover together with Robert Persson, as photographed by Izabelle Englund. The label artwork was created by Catherine Fandén. Mastered at Cutting Room by Mats Lindfors. Let’s leave the technical aspects now.

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With their wondrous sound, gloomy and virtuous atmosphere, they create some kind of warmth which sucks you into the music. They’re an unbreakable duo that have just released a new b-side from their latest album, called “Endless – Highest Mountain On Mars Remix“. Now they’re featured in Ljudkalendern for the 8th December with an unreleased track they’ve had laying around. A humble but ultimately beautiful song which goes by the name of “Sunny Day“—a crash-course in complete melancholia. Here they show more of their darkwave-side and less of their pop-oriented blasphemy. Kidding, of course—everyone likes pop, including me. But I have a certain kind of passion for darkwave. Calm vocals, descending synthesizers that build up and create a fragmented atmosphere: “You can’t stop this motion“. Listen to it exclusively on Repartiseraren as a part of our non-commercial collection.

Poem:

Fade into darkness,
embrace it regardless
Brighten up for a day,
heighten your own stay

This is the passionate delivery of Red Mecca. We’re in Nirvana now and don’t look any further. There’s only an hour or two left of this day, so embrace whatever they’re intending to give you. Listen to it with open ears and let it sink in. Blend into a wondrous atmosphere. Here’s for the 8th December—”Sunny Day“—better not rain. It can wait until tomorrow when another track will be put up and out for Ljudkalendern.

Exclusive Premiere: WTCHS – Tiger

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Californian noise-rockers WTCHS have been molding their under-appreciated sound for two years by now. They are by no means underachievers, it’s just that a lot of people might not have heard about them – or their sound. Starting out in May 2012 with their single “Adult Crimes“, a rather low-keyed presence in sound with comparisons to; Danzig before he got bloated. Moving on from their rather stoner-rock themed first single to an EP titled “Wet Weapons EP“, which virtually holds the same sound true. Though it’s combined with slightly more indie-pop and math rock, the sound-scape itself stays true to a general atmosphere found in their earlier release. Move on to January of 2013 and their sound gets even more gritty, more noisy – when they begin to punch into noise rock for real. This release, “PIE-002“, featured not only their track “Future Fires” but also tracks by Bleet, Wild Domestic and I Smell Blood. In April, their sound got paved into a combination of their earlier noise-rock sound, but featuring an even more math-rock-inspired outfit, dealing with anguish and changes in the landscape of sound only appropriate for those wanting to deal with the harsher side of their sound. The release was a split together with Thoughts On Air called “WTCHS​/​Thoughts On Air“. In September, a few months later, they put out a split together with Das Rad – titled “WTCHS​/​Das Rad” – featuring a less rock’n’roll side of themselves, instilling hope of a noise-pop future. They’re been released by labels such as Buzz Records, Out of Sound, PERDU and Sonic Unyon.

Their latest release, which came out in half a year after their split with Das Rad, is their first full-length album ever. It could be said to be their debut-album. This album, being simultaneously released by different labels, have a well-rounded sound and it feels like they’ve hit their mark with it. Therefore, the logical conclusion is an album instead of a split, single or EP. It’s titled “It’s Not A Cross, It’s A Curse!” and touch different territories of sound, making it a nostalgic trip back into their lowly presence with indie-pop as a mere placeholder, to noise-rock, away into math rock – crossing genres as they pass into something they can call their home. I’ve been given the opportunity to exclusively premiere a track from this release which was put out on the 4th of April. The track “Tiger” from this album is featured exclusively for your listening pleasure. You can stream and listen to the track itself down below, and you can also buy their release from themselves, or their different labels. Check it out, because this is something you wouldn’t like to miss. They’ve got a lot to offer musically, a stringent response to an unhinged world.

Premiere: The Pocket Rockets – The Pocket Rockets

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Since they released two singles “Somewhere We Can Be Alone” and “Summer Girl“, the band The Pocket Rockets have finally released their first album. A self-titled one which collects these singles and a couple of new tracks by the names of “No Control“, “Who We Are” and “MDNGHT“. Jon Siebels (Eve 6) have produced this album for them, and as they say in the first song: “nothing can stop us now“. That’s how it should feel when you’re a new band that is continually making progress. With their good kitsch indie-rock themed songs, early rock’n’roll vibe, mixed together with post-punk vibes. This  gives them a rather more interesting shape of what their indie-rock should be about, rather than the same old, same old that a lot of indie-rock bands seem to be doing. As they’ve created their own version of what it should be, the careless riffs and on point drumming is a joy to be heard. Even though a lot of their lyricism derives from the simple, it’s catchy and good together with the rest of the music. Nothing can be done more than to bob your head to this fine piece of indie-rock, feeling that summer is ahead of me – but closer then ever. We’re giving you a premiere of their self-titled album “The Pocket Rockets“, so you can listen to and take in this band on your own. Because they’ve been with us since some time now. Stream it from their bandcamp and enjoy.

Spotlight: Scraps Of Tape – Sjätte vansinnet

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Allas våra grabbar i Scraps Of Tape bevisar återigen varför de är en av Sveriges bästa band. Sedan deras första singeln från deras senaste släpp “Sjätte vansinnet” kom ut, nämligen “We, the leftheaded“, så har vi sedermera blivit bombarderade utav albumsläppet i sin helhet – som släpptes den 26:e Februari. Deras inte lika hårda, men ack så välgenomtänkta blandning av instrumentell post-rock och punk, som sneddar in på indie rock, har blivit en ledstjärna åtminstone för mig själv. Punkigheten tittar fram mellan de sköna indiemelodierna, och de strukturer som håller upp låtarna med en slags järnhand i bakgrunden, levererar precis den arrytmiska rytm som man letat efter men inte sällan funnit. Albumet blir hårdare och hårdare ju längre in man kommer i det, och det känns skönt att det finns en röd tråd som man kan skita i, när det gäller Scraps Of Tape. Givetvis finns det ett sammanhang för allting, men de genomgår en kvick metamorfos efter de långa slingorna av medryckande gitarrer, eftertänksamma melodier och det nordiska kynne som de representerar med sin musik. Man känner hur vemoded fullkomligt pyr ut ur deras geniala händer, och huvuden. Som helhet är de en kraft som man bör räkna med om man inte vill förlora lite utav sig själv genom att återgå till den tomhet som man känner efter att albumet är slut.

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Samtidigt så är det så pass fulländat att man grips tag i av känslorna, och låter det hända. Det vore verkligen intressant att få veta mer om låtformuleringarna, när det kommer till själva namnen. Efter låt nummer tre så blir de hårdare och hårdare. Till slut verkar de ha gett upp lite av hoppet som slår gnistor mellan raderna. En grej som jag kan tycka saknas är det svenska, som hade passat väldigt bra när det kommer till lyrikformen, för det hade lagt till en helt annan dimension till låtarna och helheten som sådan. Om man ändå greppar tag efter vemodet och slänger det i ansiktet, så bör man ha förstått var det kommer ifrån. Men med det sagt så är det inget fel med det engelska, då det tjänar sitt syfte väl ändå, men det är ändå den avsaknaden som gör att man vrider lite på huvudet och känner att någonting fattas. Däremot är det välkommet med den popighet som sipprar igenom luckorna, inom den ångande post-rock maskinen som egentligen struntar i vilket och bara kör på.

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En annan intressant grej är hur de samarbetat med Henrik Jacobsen för att bygga en begränsad upplaga av en fuzz-pedal, som är uppbyggd på så sätt att man kan relatera det till Scraps Of Tape – och det faktum att själva pedalen användes för att spela in “Sjätte vansinnet”. Trevligt nog så är pedalen redan slutsåld, då den endast uppgick i femton exemplar, där man även fick deras släpp på både CD och LP – inkluderat. Dessutom så har Johan G. Winther (eller?) designat två tröjor som snart går att köpa från skivbolaget de ligger på; A Tendervision Recording. Tröjorna går att beskåda här ovanför. Till syvende och sist så tycker jag att ni bör köpa albumet om ni tycker att det är värt det, för det tycker jag. Där finns tio helt fantastiska låtar som fått den uppskattning de behövt, likväl som albumet fått det. Om ni skulle vilja läsa en intervju som förklarar deras släpp mer ingående, och lite till, så hänvisar jag er till Rockfoto.nu. Streama albumet här nedanför och njut av det, nu när våren knackar på dörren. Jag har redan fått vårkänslor av detta album.