All the striving and the doing it, on we go, the Five music things thing yet again for whatever it still might be worth. Five? There’s something rather compelling about five, cross-pollination? Five more? Do we need to do the editorial bit again? Is there another way? A cure for pulling cats out of hats? Is there a rhyme? Is there a reason? Was there ever? What do reasons make? Five more, same as last time (and the time before) five, and no, we never do and the proof of the pudding is in that proof reading. When we started this thing, oh never mind, it doesn’t matter and like we asked last time, does anyone bother reading the editorial? Does anyone ever actually look down the rabbit hole or is it all just method acting? We do listen to everything that comes in, we do it so you don’t have to, we are very (very) picky about what we actually post on these pages or play on the radio or hang in a gallery. Cut to the chase, there’s loads of music further down the page, well five or so pieces of music that have come our way in the last few days and cut cut slash and cut to the damn chase, who needs an editorial? Here’s your five for today.
1: Black Country, New Road – Ants From up There (Ninja Tune) – Black Country, New Road clearly don’t need our words or radio play now, they have had rather a lot, their debut album was one of our albums of the year last year and this follow up,Ants From up There, is probably, once we’ve let it all unfold properly, just as good. That press release full of glowing quotes from the mainstream press tell us we’re not really needed here. Ants is as full of that adventurous drama as that debut album was, they’re as epic as last time, as richly expansive, as dramatic, as full bodied again and as willing to not be too obvious as that debt album was, this sounds massive actually. from the intro to the twelve and bit minutes of album closer Basketball Shoes, everything sounds big. Black Country, New Road are way too colourfully expansive (dare we say progressive?) to be dismissed as nothing more than the next post-rock darlings the mainstream press want to pigeonhole them as. if Meat Loaf had actually been a very English sounding (indie) band from Cambridge who tasted a little like Pulp rather than a big bloke from Texas – they are dramatic, they are mesmerising, they do tell stories. They clearly don’t need us now though, this is pretty much an afterthought, they probably never did really. Once again the album is delicately detailed, alive with uplifting character, it is maybe just a little less multi dimensional than last time, it is as adventurous though, Good Will Hunting does get a touch positively aggressive as it unfolds, we’re not really need ed here though, it came out last Friday, listen to it on Bandcamp and make your own minds up. Yer man Will say we’re not needed with our idle habds now, he’s right….
2: Datapuddle – Mooncave – This is rather beautiful, rather reflective, rather refined, Datapuddle probably do need our time and space a little more than Balck Country, well they don’t, they sound like they don’t need anything from anyone, they sound like they’re just getting on with it all, just enjoying the view without a care in the world. Not sure ehat the first trac kon the album is warning us about, this is as easy as watching the clouds, a beautifully restrained mostly instrumental (save for the occasional spoke word narration or maybe found sound). Dare we say a bit of a Lemon Jelly feel? A touch Mike Oldfield, Air maybe, more organic though, warm cello, electronica, beautiful construction. Hey look, you have ears, you have a heart, you have a mouse, all you really need from us is a link to their Bandcamp.
2: Whatever The Weather – Following her critically-acclaimed 2021 LP, Reflection, Loraine James announces the eponymous debut album under her ambient-minded alias, Whatever The Weather. A fascinating change of pace for the North London producer, the material finds her using keyboard improvisations, stuttering production, and vocal experimentation to shape atmosphere, mood, and tone. The music moves with an intrinsic fluidity, akin to sudden weather events passing over a single environment. Airy, transportive, and unpredictable, tracks freeze, thaw, and bloom in varying degrees, as reflected in the temperatures of their titles. The collection sees release this spring on Ghostly International. Order details should you need ’em, or Bandcamp
Here’s the lead single “17°C” with a music video directed by Michael Reisinger.
3: Bank Myna – more from the rather dark sounding band from Paris, we did feature them a couple of weeks back, ORGAN THING: Paris-based dark post-rock band Bank Myna have just released a rather fine single ahead of the promise of their February album…. You can find our more via that link you jsut passed, this is another track off the new album that’s out at the end of the month. This one has a bit of a Godspeed You! Black Emperor feel to it, that’s no bad thing is it?
4: Wet Leg – “Oh No” from the album ‘Wet Leg’ out 8th April 2022 on Domino. Everyone’s favourite band at the moment so it seems, good on ’em, they don’t really need us either but hey, like I said, everyone’s favourite and we do like a healthy slice of beautifully coloured pop music..
5: Animal Collective are set to release their new album Time Skiffs this Friday, (well last Friday now) and today (well the other day now, I was bust painting flowers) they share a final preview, the new single “We Go Back” alongside a video created by the director and animator Winston Hacking. “It was a thrill to work with Animal Collective – they trusted our sense of play and commitment to spontaneity which is mirrored in their sound,” says Hacking. “The video is composed of scanned locations, miniature sets and collage cut outs that embrace the low-fi 3d aesthetic inherent in photogrammetry.”
5: Pendant – A slice from the new album, Harp out April 8, 2022 on Saddle Creek. More info right here, and more wordery under the video should you need it…
Here somes the hypes “Los Angeles-via-Oakland musician Chris Adams who makes music under the moniker PENDANT (all caps) has announced his Saddle Creek debut Harp, available April 8th. Watch the video for the first single “Thorn”. Directed by Joey Breese and starring Adams, the video is “Sabotage” meets Falling Down featuring classified files, motorbikes, and more within the backdrop of Los Angeles.
A lush, surprising new body of work from the producer and songwriter, Harp connects 90s house and rave music with hip-hop, shoegaze, and pop, and which serves as a culmination of years of painful emotional work for Adams brought on by the death of his father over 10 years prior. Though Harp is Adam’s sophomore album as PENDANT it feels like a starting point. The release of his 2019 debut Through a Coil was marred by the messy, public dissolution of the record label it was released on the day it was to be released. A year later he was burnt out. Attempting to tour the album had been hard on his voice, and the structures of rock music, which had dictated his entire life as a musician, were beginning to feel claustrophobic.
PENDANT’s salvation came, ironically, in the form of the pandemic. Adams was ready to make new music but was both mentally and physically marooned, unable to reach the tools he would ordinarily use to make music or the headspace he would ordinarily inhabit. Without a guitar, the crutch that had supported much of his music-making in the past, he was forced to sketch out Harp’s world in a more impressionistic, free-associative way. Long a fan of dance and electronic music, he was suddenly without any good reason to not venture into that beat-heavy, synth-drenched world. The resulting Harp recalls the precise but emotionally rich landscapes of Arca or Oneohtrix Point Never, rendered in the watercolors of My Bloody Valentine”
That’s enough, more when we have more or want more, if you want more that is? More were a damn fine band, East London Metal, More was their name, volume was their game, come on now….
Here you go, three hours of it, the deck is uneven right from the start…. you play the hobby horse..