Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Fashionably Late

I'm on a neverending search for that perfect beat. I've found it many times over, but there's always that inevitability that I'll find a song more perfect than the last. And as much as I'd like to think that I'm pretty good at staying on top of new music, some things will always slip through the cracks. Lucky thing the good ones always find their way back.

So this mixtape consists of bands whose albums have been out for quite some time but for me, are recent discoveries. Songs like these have no expiration date especially when they find their way to your ears for the first time. As always, listen loud and become immersed.

Fashionably Late [Random Ramblings & Mixtapes]

Fashionably Late
1. Be Forest, "Wild Brain": This Italian trio was as random of a music find as it gets for me. Somehow I ended up on a blog that I now can't remember, but their main feature was about this band. The musical reference points included The Jesus And Mary Chain, Echo & The Bunnymen, and The Cure. Needless to say, the nods to post-punk and goth won me over. Their album, Cold. came out in 2011 and it has still been on a pretty constant rotation for me.

2. TOY, "Motoring": I'm not too late to the party when it comes to this UK band. Their debut single, "Left Myself Behind" came out at the beginning of the year and was a mind-melting 8-minute sonic journey. The band has a debut full-length due out in September on Heavenly. Their second single, "Motoring" which came out in April, is another hypnotic mix of psychedelic Kraut rock and post-punk. It makes me count the days until September when the album finally drops.

3. Poliça, "Violent Games": I'm not quite sure how to properly pronounce this band's name but I do know it consists of  two members of GAYNGS (Channy Leaneagh and Ryan Olson.) Their debut album, Give You The Ghost came out on Valentine's Day of this year; fitting since I've been known to describe Poliça as "dreampop masquerading as makeout music."

4. Siinai, "Marathon": I came across this Finnish post-rock band because they back up Spencer Krug on his latest Moonface album, the excellent, Heartbreaking Bravery. While backing Moonface, Siinai's swirling Kraut rock helps bring Krug's eccentricities back down to earth. On their own album, Olympic Games (which came out back in February) they manage to make anthemic instrumental rockers that would fit somewhere between Explosions In The Sky and Krug's former band, Wolf Parade.

5. The Big Sleep, "Meet Your Maker": Brooklyn indie rockers, The Big Sleep put out their latest album, Nature Experiments, back in January (or March, I'm not sure when exactly.) It's a tough album to describe because it doesn't fall into a tidy sub-category like shoegaze or psych-rock. Instead, it mixes a lot of those guitar-driven indie rock influences together so well that it hints at everything without subscribing to just one thing.

6. DZ Deathrays, "Dollar Chills": An Australian guitar-and-drums duo that makes sleazy yet danceable fuzz punk not too far removed from the sleazy yet danceable fuzz punk of Canadian bass-and-drums duo, Death From Above 1979. They may not be breaking new ground on their latest, Bloodstreams (released back in May) but they don't need to with songs this dirty and addictive.

7. Screen Vinyl Image, "Stay Asleep": This band's second album, Strange Behaviour, came out in December of 2011 - about a week too late to land it in my favorites of last year. That's unfortunate, since it quickly got some constant plays on BriPod, especially this song. Almost 8-minutes long with one of the coolest shifts ever as it goes from Jesus And Mary Chain-indebted minimal shoegaze before transforming mid-song into a sprawling, feedback soaked industrial dirge.

8. Agent Side Grinder, "Look Within": Here's where this mixtape takes a turn towards my industrial leanings (clearly triggered by the previous, SVI song.) Agent Side Grinder is a minimal electronic/post-punk band hailing from Sweden. This one is the lead track off their latest album, Hardware (released in February) and it should come as no surprise as to why I fell for it- coldwave electronics, a rolling bassline and deep vocals. Hell, in a perfect world this song would be huge in goth/industrial clubs!

9. Kontravoid, "Cut To Cleanse": Going along with the minimal electronic/coldwave vibe of Agent Side Grinder, is this song off of Kontravoid's self-titled album which also came out back in February. Kontravoid is headed by Cameron Findlay, former drummer for Crystal Castles and an original member of synthpop act, Parallels. As Kontravoid, Findlay picks up some of the blacklit stylings of Crystal Castles and adds in some goth and EBM. Again, this act is a no-brainer for me to like.

10. Soft Metals, "The Cold World Melts": Another obvious choice for a band I would like. Icy electropop that tips its hat to old-school EBM. Their debut album is about a year old but hearing their music, it sounds as if it had been transported from a frozen futuristic era.

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