indie30.com
BRAIDS SET TO RELEASE THIRD ALBUM
Saturday, 14 February 2015 01:00
 

Montreal outfit Braids have announced an April release for their much anticipated third album, Deep In The Iris. Since the release of their outstanding debut Native Speaker back in 2011, the trio have been steadily developing their organic electronic sound. This comes to full maturation on what is perhaps their best track thus far, the brutally honest, 'Miniskirt', which is Raphaelle Standell-Preston's very personal take on the objectification of women and the ever present potential and real acts of violence that women endure as a matter of course in our less than perfect western society. Many well-meaning men like to think we've come a long way in the recent past when it comes to the rights and position of women in western culture. Standell-Preston's cutting lyrics remind all of us of just how far we all still have to go. Deep In The Iris is out on April 28 on two of Canada's best independent labels, Arbutus and Flemish Eye. Pre-order here. The contender for our first chart number one of the year is below.

Tracklist

1. Letting Go
2. Taste
3. Blondie 
4. Happy When 
5. Miniskirt 
6. Getting Tired 
7. Sore Eyes 
8. Bunny Rose  
9. Warm Like Summer
 
 

Miniskirt

Braids (CAN)
From the forthcoming album, 'Deep In The Iris', Arbutus/Flemish Eye.

Braids Official

Audio Stream

 
CHROMATICS UNVEIL FIRST TRACK FROM DEAR TOMMY
Friday, 13 February 2015 05:52
 

 
Portland electronic outfit, Chromatics are set to release their new full length record, Dear Tommy, in March. It's the follow up to our number one album of 2012, Kill For Love. The long awaited first single from the record is the measured and understated, 'Just Like You' is like spending five minutes of tranquility on a languid surface but lurking beneath that surface you know are unrevealed elements that will envelope you with each listen. It's available as a free download. There will be a new track released each week in the lead up to the album and we'll be posting each and every one. Chromatics mastermind Johnny Jewel is almost as excited as we are;
 
“I’M SO HAPPY TO SHARE THE FIRST SINGLE OFF OF “DEAR TOMMY” TODAY. GOING TO BE RELEASING A SINGLE A WEEK UNTIL THE ALBUM COMES OUT IN MARCH. I FUCKING LOVE THIS RECORD SO MUCH & I AM LITERALLY FOAMING AT THE MOUTH TO SHARE IT WITH YOU.”
 
Johnny Jewel.
 
 
Tracklist 
 
1. Fresh Blood
2. In Films
3. Time Rider
4. I Can Never Be Myself When You're Around
5. Cherry
6. She Says
7. Just Like You
8. 4 A.M.
9. Teacher
10. Camera
11. Dear Tommy
12. Touch Blue
13. After Hours
14. Shadow
15. In Silence
16. Colorblind
17. Endless Sleep 
 
 
 

Just Like You

Chromatics (USA)
From the forthcoming album, 'Dear Tommy', Italians Do It Better. Out in March

Chromatics Facebook

Audio Stream

 
PRODUCER TURTLE WITH PROPULSIVE NEW TRACK
Thursday, 12 February 2015 00:00
 

Last month Glaswegian producer Jon Cooper, aka Turtle, dropped, 'Colours', his latest cut and a piece of measured musical intellect. A kaleidoscopic journey that rests on guitar and synth textures and a hypnotic slow trance like beat interspersed with subtle electronic like flourishes that complement the groove. The rise is just fuckin' nice. Download it free below. The EP of the same name is out soon.

 

Colours

Turtle (SCO)
From the digital single, 'Colours', Self Released.

Turtle Facebook

Audio Stream

 
NATALIE PRASS DROPS TIMELESS DEBUT
Wednesday, 11 February 2015 00:00
 

 

 
The gushing press that has heralded the self titled debut album from Cleveland born and now Nashville based singer songwriter Natalie Prass is more than deserved. After two long years in the can courtesy of a decision by her Richmond label Spacebomb to concentrate on the 2012 album Big Inner, by label head Matthew E. White, her album finally sees the light of day. However, it would be unfair to point the finger at Spacebomb for the delay in the sense that it's not so much a label but a stable of immensely talented musicians in the mould of the house bands of the late 50's and early 60's putting out music that is fiercely independent in all facets, distribution included. And Spacebomb's musical prints are all over Prass's exquisitely constructed soul, country and pop infused songwriting. While there is a definite sense of nostalgia that filters through the record, especially in its embellishments (closer 'It Is You' a case in point), this is actually a futuristic sounding document, all the more refreshing in its refusal to follow current trends. The album is out now on all formats and available on vinyl here. It's already sold out in a number of places so get in quick.
 
Tracklist
 
1. My Baby Don’t Understand Me
2. Bird of Prey
3. Your Fool
4. Christy
5. Why Don’t You Believe In Me
6. Violently
7. Never Over You
8. Reprise
9. It Is You 
 
 

My Baby Don't Understand Me

Natalie Prass (USA)
From the album, Natalie Prass', Spacebomb.

Natalie Prass Official Site

Audio Stream

 

Why Don't You Believe In Me

Natalie Prass (USA)
From the album, Natalie Prass', Spacebomb.

Audio Stream

Official Video

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

 

 

Bird Of Prey

Natalie Prass (USA)
From the album, Natalie Prass', Spacebomb.

Audio Stream

 
TRANS-PACIFIC DUO VALLIS ALPS UNVEIL DEBUT EP
 

Collaborating musically across the Pacific Ocean online, electronic duo, Vallis Alps have released their debut EP, Young. It features the near perfect pipes of Canberra resident Parissa Tossif and the production/instrumentation work of Seattle based producer and visual artist David Ansari. The variety of tempo and approach across the four tracks is very much an attraction. The delicate title track can be heard below. We think you'll be impressed. Very very nice. Digitally here.

Tracklist
 
1. Young
2. Thru
3. Oh!
4. Reprieve

 

Young

Vallis Alps (AUS/USA)
From the EP, 'Young', Self Released.

Vallis Alps Facebook

Audio Stream

 
JESSICA PRATT DELIVERS LESSONS IN BREVITY AND INTEGRITY
Monday, 09 February 2015 00:00
 

On Your Own Love Again is the gorgeously brief new album by Los Angeles based singer songwriter Jessica Pratt, a deft combination of pop and folk that will have you floating for its half hour timespan. Despite is spartan instrumentation, musically its a lush listen that belies its heart wrenching lyrics as Pratt wistfully mourns relationships lost and never found. Her self titled debut released back in 2012 was an indication of her considerable talent and originality. On Your Own Love Again doesn't so much build upon that record but departs from it. Jessica Pratt doesn't like standing still and certainly doesn't like outstaying her welcome. A album of brevity and beauty. It's out now through Drag City. The vinyl is here. Highly recommended.

 

Tracklist
 
1. Wrong Hand
2. Game That I Play
3. Strange Melody
4. Greycedes
5. Moon Dude
6. Jacquelyn in the Background
7. I’ve Got a Feeling
8. Back, Baby
9. On Your Own Love Again

 

Back, Baby

Jessica Pratt (USA)
From the album, On Your Own Love Again', Drag City.

Jessica Pratt Label Page

Audio Stream

 
INTERVIEW: ANDREW COATES OF BLACK CAB
Friday, 06 February 2015 00:00
 

Late last year we interviewed Andrew Coates from Black Cab about their superb new double album, Games Of The XXI Olympiad. The album came in at 3 in our Top 30 albums of 2014 and now word has come through about a four sided vinyl release - just salivating about that. Couldn't think of a better way to kick off 2015. They ship out in March. Our comprehensive interview with Andrew is below.

**Pre-order Games Of The XXI Olympiad on double vinyl here.**

 

INDIE30: I'd have to say straight off the bat, having immersed myself in Games of the XXI Olympiad over the past few days that sincere congratulations are in order. It's a superb listen. After your first record, you oriented yourselves towards Germany in many ways. Apart from your obvious love of German psychedelic and electronic music, were there any other reasons for becoming so close to the country artistically and otherwise?

AC: We're always been kind of cultural history nuts, particularly for Europe in the 1970's, and I've always been fascinated by German history, culture and music.  We're obviously super interested in the period of the '70's that spawned Kraftwerk, Neu, Harmonia, Cluster and so on, Bowie in Berlin etc.  But German history and culture in the 70’s is also really interesting – extreme politics (Baader Meinhoff etc), DDR, the birth of the green movement etc

INDIE30: Was this a reaction in any way to what was happening in Australia at the time - have you felt your music has been appreciated here? Do you feel closer to Europe in that sense?

AC: We do feel closer to Europe, certainly more so now than the previous more guitar based line-up.  We never felt like we fitted in to that traditional Melbourne rock sound and we sort of fall between the gaps of the festival scene, being neither rock nor dance, but we do have a very loyal fan base here in Melbourne and we feel very close to the people who like our music and seek it out. We certainly don’t do this for the money which is actually very liberating and keeps you focused on music that you’d feel proud to share with the world and that will stand the test of time.

INDIE30: This album and your last two are heavily influenced by East Germany as a political entity and as a concept. I could surmise and venture many reasons for this as it fascinates me too. But what's the fascination there for you guys?

AC: There’s something darkly fascinating about a dictatorship with such a massive inferiority complex that they have to have nearly half the country spying on the other half, as well systematically doping their best athletes over a decade to show the world how awesome their political system is.  But that whole national showboating thing is common across the entire Olympics as a spectacle, even to the stupid outfits countries put together to show off to each other.  In 1976 those outfits reach staggering heights of awfulness. And East Germany beat out the US in terms of medals (they came second after the USSR) and Australia totally sucked ass – winning no gold at all.  We find that hugely amusing and slots right in to our ongoing national inferiority complex.

INDIE30: Tell us about the back story behind coming up with the concept for this album, the East German State Plan 14:25 and the Montreal Olympics, and did that concept evolve over the four year writing and recording process? If so, how?

AC: We knew we wanted to do something electronic around a loose sporting theme and the 1976 Games was a logical one to base it around given the DDR’s doping program and our interest in that country after Call Signs.  We also wanted to explore more electronic territory so this also slotted in nicely with the performance enhanced vibe of those games. Once we settled on that theme it kicked off some great inspiration for tracks like Opening and Closing Ceremony, Supermadchen and Kornelia Ender, and we could bring other tacks into the fold through adding some bombastic synths and treatments.

INDIE30: The trajectory of your music seems to follow the same trajectory of the independent German scene of the late 60s and 70s, going from live instrumentation and psychedelic influences towards the employment of motorik rhythms and a penchant for electronic programming. Has this been simply a natural progression or has it been more of a conscious thing? And either way, how does that happen?

AC: James and I have always been big fans of electronic music.  James is a Kraftwerk nut from way back, and I’ve loved weirder UK stuff like Cabaret Voltaire and Throbbing Gristle as well as great German bands such as Neu and Cluster. Once we made the decision to ditch the guitars and go primarily electronic it was quite liberating as we didn’t have to shoehorn guitars over everything as we did previously. We also love strange sounds, drones and treatments and Steve Law is a great one for weirdness and sonic experimentation and he helped shape some early sounds on tracks like Supermadchen, Edner and Go Slow. And we also selected producers who could help us further shape sounds and ideas, like Simon Polinski, Tim Holmes and finally Woody Annison, who’s also a sonic adventurer with great taste and a dark energy that we really like. I guess we did shadow the evolution of those great German bands - and we'll probably continue further in that vein.

INDIE30: With the embracing of synthesisers and an electronic direction having come to full maturation on the new record, what role did the two singles 'Combat Boots' and Sexy Polizei, written some years ago, play in generating the rest of album's sound?

AC: Both of those singles set the tone for everything else. Sexy Polizei came out of some sessions with the previous more guitar-based lineup.  We worked on a bunch of ideas over two days at Headgap and I hated nearly all of it.  The one track I thought had the most potential was Sexy Polizei and that become the focus.  The other guys (save for James and Steve) hated it. Then we added further fuel to the fire by bringing in Mon Brumby – via Simon Polinksi – to add some gorgeous backing vocals and take us further from what was by then pretty set as a Cab rock sound.  The result was really a template for this album.  Boots built on this further and by then James and I were pretty set on going much further in that direction. That meant the guitars (and guitarists) had to go too as they just didn’t work over the new tracks live. We stripped back as much as we could then rebuilt.

INDIE30: Was a double album always the aim or did that evolve?

AC: James and I stupidly said we’d do the fourth as a double from day one. Like looking at Mount Everest on a postcard and going “Sure – piece of piss.” And once we promised a double, well that was it.  Like a noose around our necks! But we actually had a bunch of tracks that we left off the final album, so fuck Everest – we could have done a triple!

INDIE30: The last two tracks take an ambient reflective almost cautionary note when put next to the exhilaration of 'Supermadchen' and 'Go Slow' to name two. The high's and low's of the doping concept I guess? Was this what you were aiming for in this sense 

AC: We always like to mix things up with a few weird, album oriented ambient tracks otherwise things get a little samey samey.  Some of my favorite album moments are weird reflective tracks like Providence on Sonic Youth’s Daydream Nation or The Arm of The Lord on Cabaret Voltaire’s Covenant and Sword LP. Throbbing Gristle were great at this too. You can really push ideas in ways you can’t with a more formal track arrangement, which works great when you have a loose theme to work around.

INDIE30: The sound on the album is absolutely amazing - so clear and crisp, so precise. It's well known the recording was a long and laborious process with a range of producers and studios enlisted. Could you let us in the reasons for the length of time and the changes in location and personnel and what you were trying to achieve with the recording process and what was it like to deal with and manage?

AC: It took us a long time to find the sounds and arrangements that really worked once we’d ditched the guitars and previous live band members.  We started with Simon Polinski who did some great work for us on early versions of Sexy Pol and Boots and has a great track record with electronica, then did some newer stuff with Tim Holmes in London.  Tim’s work with Death In Vegas was super appealing, and Wes Holland knew him from some work he’s done with the Sand Pebbles.  We got some good stuff done with Tim but some of the arrangements needed lots more work, so we took tracks like Go Slow and Supermadchen back to a live context and danced them up a little to try and get people moving.  Arrangements quickly changed and evolved and Supermadchen for example went from a tame 4.5 min arrangement to the current 10 journey based solely on live experimentation, which we were able to do thanks to great technology like Ableton Live.  Adding Wes in on live drums was also great as he pulled the sound from being pure electronic back to some more rock energy.

The final step was then to take all tracks in to Woody Annison who’s been our go to producer for our best work.  Having spent so long on the album we were getting kinda of lost in it, and we needed Woody’s taste and forcefulness to shape the final work and push the sounds a little harder.  He knows what our sound should be and has a great feel for the studio as an instrument. He also has the balls to tell us when we’re serving him up shit which can be hard for non-producers to do.

INDIE30: It's well known that independent artists who stay true to themselves and their art aren't exactly flushed with cash. How does it feel that the record is finally out there now? Were their times you doubted it would surface in the form it has?

AC; We feel great and I think the record stands up well.  The only issue now is how to get it known to people out there who don’t know it exists but would like it if they did.  There are no labels or money in music now so you need to work this distro and promo shit out for yourselves or you’re fucked.  We have some good partners and a great online presence so now it’s up to us to figure out how to break out of Melbourne and get known in some great places internationally.

INDIE30: Any plans for a vinyl release? I'd love it to have pride and place in my collection. In fact I'm positively salivating at the prospect! Are there plans to release the record internationally?

Yep – vinyl in March 2015.  It’ll be 4 sides.

INDIE30: What's next for Black Cab?

Who the hell knows?  It’s been a strange trip so anything’s possible!

 

James Stocker - (November 2014) February 6, 2015.

 

Go Slow

Black Cab (AUS)
From the album, 'Games Of The XXI Olympiad', Interstate 40.

Black Cab Facebook

Audio Stream

 

 
YUMI ZOUMA ANNOUNCE SECOND EP, DEBUT NEW SINGLE
Thursday, 05 February 2015 00:00
 

Erstwhile Kiwi internationalists Yumi Zouma won our gong for best EP of the last year with the gorgeous self titled debut they dropped twelve months ago and they've started of 2015 in the same fashion. Last week the Christchurch-Paris-New York based pop trio announced the release of their second little gem, simply titled EP II. It features this blinder of a new single, 'Catastrophe', the chorus of which is quite simply addictive pop gold. Kim Pflaum's vocal hook is just killer. Containing five tracks including last year's 'Alena', it will be unleashed on 10" vinyl March 3. The first 500 orders get it on translucent blue while there are just 200 to ship internationally so pre-order it here asap. 'Catastrophe's' apt but strange music video is below. Apparently the first in a two parter from video auteur BANGS.

Tracklist

1. Dodi
2. Alena
3. Catastrophe
4. Second Wave
5. Song For Zoe & Glen

 

Catastrophe

Yumi Zouma (NZL)
From the forthcoming EP, 'Yumi Zouma II, Cascine. Out March 3.

Yumi Zouma Official Site

Audio Stream

Official Video

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

 
RECORD REVIEW: VIET CONG DELIVER BLISTERING DEBUT
Wednesday, 04 February 2015 00:00
 

The self titled debut long player from Calgary noise/post-punk quartet Viet Cong is our first album of the week for 2015. The intelligently crafted seven tracks employ the best elements of a myriad of approaches and sounds that personify the experimentation of the immediate post punk era but in terms of the fruits of that employment produce something truly original. Abrasive, yes, alienating, no. 

The menacing factorised march of 'Newspaper Spoons' opens proceedings followed by the deadpan vocals, pulsing bass and skeletal guitars of 'Pointless Experience' mirroring its title. The inexorable industrial whirr of 'March Of Progress embeds itself easily into the subconcious.'Bunker Buster' boasts a Women sounding high pitched guitar riff and thumping beat before a dose of pop drama enters proceedings to offer the light to the shade. Such texturing is hard to engineer but the songwriting chops of this foursome are of the highest order. 
 
'Continental Shelf' is as close to industrial pop that you'll get while the fast paced manic nature of the synth laden 'Silhouettes' plays a vital role in the album's tracklisting. Closing monster 'Death' packs more into its 11 minutes that some bands have mustered in their whole careers. 
 
For anybody, like me, who has been lamenting the tragic demise of Women, the former band of bassist and vocalist Matt Flegel and drummer Mike Wallace, the getting together of Flegel and guitarist Scott Munro and the further enlistment of Daniel Christiansen has produced an entity even better - and that's definitely a statement.  
 
James Stocker - January 22, 2015.
 
 
The video for second single, 'Silhouettes' is below. Viet Cong is out now through Flemish Eye in Canada and Jagjaguwar internationally. The vinyl is already on its second pressing. Get it here
 
 

Silhouettes

Viet Cong (CAN)
From the album, 'Viet Cong', Flemish Eye / Jagjaguwar.

Viet Cong Bandcamp

Official Video

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

 
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ALBUM OF THE WEEK

March 24, 2015

GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR (CAN)

Asunder, Sweet And Other Distress

Godspeed! You Black Emperor Facebook

Constellation

Buy here

1. Peasantry Or 'Light! Inside Of Light'
2. Lambs' Breath
3. Asunder, Sweet
4. Piss Crowns Are Trebled

------------------------

March 24, 2015

COURTNEY BARNETT (AUS)

Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit

Courtney Barnett Official

Milk! / Marathon Artists / Mom + Pop

Buy here

1. Elevator Operator
2. Pedestrian At Best
3. An Illustration Of Loneliness (Sleepless In NY)
4. Small Poppies
5. Depreston
6. Aqua Profunda!
7. Dead Fox
8. Nobody Really Cares If You Don't Go To The Party
9. Debbie Downer
10. Kim's Caravan
11. Boxing Day Blues

------------------------

March 17,  2015

ETIQUETTE (CAN)

Reminisce

Hand Drawn Dracula

Etiquette Facebook

Buy here

1. Pleasantries
2. Brown And Blue
3. Attention Seeker
4. Sleep To Wake
5. Twinkling Stars
6. Promises
7. On And On
8. Outside in
9. Island

Stream whole album here

------------------------

March 10, 2015

YOUNG GUV (CAN)

Ripe 4 Luv

Slumberland Records

Buy here

1. Crushing Sensation - VIDEO
2. Ripe 4 Luv
3. Crawling Back To You
4. Aquarian
5. Kelly, I'm Not A Creep
6. Dear Drew
7. Living The Dream
8. Wrong Crowd (feat. Jef Barbera)

------------------------

March 3, 2015

MOUNT EERIE (USA)

Sauna

P.W. Elverum & Sun Ltd.

Buy here

1. Sauna
2. Turmoil
3. Dragon
4. Emptiness
5. (something)
6. Boat
7. Planets
8. Pumpkin
9. Spring
10. Books
11. Youth

------------------------

February 24, 2015

SLEATER-KINNEY (USA)

No Cities To Love

Sub Pop

Sleater-Kinney Official

Buy here

1. Price Tag
2. Fangless
3. Surface Envy
4. No Cities To Love
5. A New Wave
6. No Anthems
7. Gimme Love
8. Bury Our Friends
9. Hey Darling
10. Fade

------------------------

February 17, 2015

CASA DEL MIRTO (ITA)

Still

Ghost Records

Casa Del Mirto Facebook

Buy here (no vinyl available)

Stream album here

1. Paralyzed
2. Invisible (feat. Avalon Omega)
3. Reflex
4. Where You Stand
5. Pressure
6. Last Blue Wind
7. A Picture Of
8. Butterfly
9. 8 (feat. Aaron Larcher)
10. What I See Inside Of Me
11. Still

------------------------

February 10, 2015

NATALIE PRASS (USA)

Natalie Prass

Spacebomb 

Natalie Prass Official

Buy here

1. My Baby Don't Understand Me
2. Bird Of Prey
3. Your Fool
4. Christy
5. Why Don't You Believe In Me
6. Violently
7. Never Over You
8. Reprise
9. It Is You

---------------------------

February 3, 2015

JESSICA PRATT (USA)

On Your Own Love Again

Drag City

Jessica Pratt Label Page

Buy here

1. Wrong Hand
2. Game That I Play
3. Strange Melody
4. Greycedes
5. Moon Dude
6. Jacquelyn In The Background
7. I've Got A Feeling
8. Back, Baby
9. On Your Own Love Again

---------------------------

January 27th, 2015

VIET CONG (CAN)

Viet Cong

Flemish Eye / Jagjaguwar

Viet Cong Bandcamp

Buy here

1. Newspaper Spoons
2. Pointless Experience
3. March Of Progress
4. Bunker Buster
5. Continental Shelf
6. Silhouettes
7. Death

-------------------------

 

TOP 30 PLAYER

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CURRENT TOP 10

1. My Baby Don't Understand Me
Natalie Prass (USA)
 
2. Talk Show
Au. Ra (AUS)
 
3. Find Yourself
Jacco Gardner (NET)
 
4. Boris
Breakfast (USA)
 
5. Catastrophe
Yumi Zouma (NZL)
 
6. Double Talk
Jaakko Eino Kalevi (FIN)
 
7. Miniskirt
Braids (CAN)
 
8. Let It Happen
Tame Impala (AUS)
 
9. Just Yet
For Esmé (CAN)
 
10. Brown & Blue
Etiquette (CAN)
 
------------------------
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