Another five for another Monday then, a simple herding together of five musical things worth of your ears and our time. Five slices of music, in no particular order, five things that have come out way in recent days… Here’s the music, there’s the links, on with it all….
1: TOBY DRIVER, he of Kayo Dot, has what appears to be, on first listing of one track, a rather beautiful solo album on the way. “Coming in a few weeks (April 21), The Flenser will be releasing my long-awaited solo ballads album, MADONNAWHORE. The album also features members of Kayo Dot on various songs. Simultaneously, The Flenser will be releasing a repress of Kayo Dot’s 2013 triple-vinyl LP, HUBARDO (on both 3xLP and CD). You can pre-order both now, via http://nowflensing.com in the Americas or deathwishinc for Europeans”. Toby has a whole load of live activity going in in the US right now, check out his page for details.
“On the heels of Kayo Dot’s 2016 album Plastic House on Base of Sky, New York City based avant-garde musician TOBY DRIVER sustains his inexhaustible output with a solo album titled Madonnawhore. After exploring a retro-futurist noir sound on Kayo Dot’s 2014 album Coffins on Io then delving even further into electronic music with Plastic House on Base of Sky, Driver was eager to write a different kind of song. Madonnawhore represents a foray into traditional songwriting, stripped of the progressive flourishes and unpredictability of Kayo Dot. These six austere tracks were recorded as a solo effort; they are sparse and atmospheric, evoking empty spaces and the beauty sometimes inherent in death. They occupy a heretofore unexplored place in Driver’s oeuvre, further demonstrating his immeasurable talent. Although not a concept album, Madonnawhore is united by its exploration of the “madonna-whore complex,” a psychological neurosis first identified by Sigmund Freud whereby a man feels he can only love a woman who maintains a saint-like purity, but desires to be intimate with someone he considers to be debased.”
Toby has a whole load of live activity going in in the US right now, check out his official Toby Driver Facebook page page for details of what he’s doing at SXSW and in New York as well as US Kayo Dot dates
2: USELESS CITIES are back with a new set of recordings, “We’ve just released our second EP now so thought we would send it along incase you wanted to listen as you featured the first one. I’ve attached our links and a Dropbox as well with artwork. Also a blurb which we didn’t actually write ourselves!”
Blurb: “London-based, multi-national indie rockers Useless Cities have released their new single New Feelings. The widescreen piece of sweeping indie rock welds icy guitar lines to alternating male/female vocals and urgent, restless drum patterns. Since arriving fully formed in 2016, Useless Cities have been busy playing a string of live shows around London (including gigs at renowned venues The Sebright Arms, The Monarch, The Good Ship, O2 Islington Academy, The Black Heart and The Amersham Arms) and building a fanbase for their unique take on nineties and noughties-influenced indie rock. Their debut EP Stay quickly turned heads at radio with Hoxton FM, Croydon Radio and Spark Sunderland playlisting tracks, while the band’s songwriting and intricate soundscapes were praised by Wolf In A Suit, Music Is My Radar and Independent Music UK in a series of glowing reviews” .
3: HOOFUS is at London’s always rewarding Cafe Oto this coming Friday evening, Friday March 17th, as part of a [Modern Ritual] evening, “Hoofus uses drifting oscillators, cryptic rhythm and tactile interaction between performer and machines to create music of wayward eerie wonder. Drawing on rustic, alienation and the reclamation of the manmade by nature, Hoofus explores the uncanny beauty of the intangible and occult seeping through into our post-industrial world”
[Modern Ritual] – A night of new performances exploring ideas of ritual through music and words, evoking real and fictional landscapes. Featuring solo sets from Charles Hayward, Laura Cannell and Hoofus, a new collaboration between Laura & Charles and a new performance/talk by Jennifer Lucy Allan and a reading from Luke Turner.
[Modern Ritual] is ancient, modern, experimental, real, fictional, personal, folkloric. It explores human and mechanical rituals, failure of ritual, through live improvisation and provides a platform to premier new works.
4: LAURA CANNELL is also part of [Modern Ritual] at Cafe Oto this coming Friday
5: MERCY BROWN have a new video, the Spokane alt-metal band are on a fourteen day US tour right now. Frontwoman Sera Hatchett commented: “We’re looking forward to getting on the road again and making our way to Southern California for the first time, and back up to Boise to play Treefort Music Fest. Hope to see you soon!” In addition to embarking on the tour, the band have also recently released an amazing video for their track “Codependent” which is taken from their self-titled 2015 album.
And before we go, a crumhorn call….