Tuesday, 29 December 2009

A Top 25 Style Chart Rundown Of Records From The Naughties

Before I start I should say that I know everyone has been at this, DiS and Pitchfork have both done massive rundowns, everyone else started a thread on the subject on every forum on the entire internet.

Anyhow...I was asked by a friend to compile a top ten of my favourite records of the naughties, this brought about two seconds of excitement (who doesn't love lists?) and then what followed was days and days of adding record names to an every expanding list. Seriously? A top ten? I'm pretty sure if you've only got really into music in the last three years you could do a top ten off the top your head almost but for everyone else, I see this as a daunting task. I started scribbling down some records onto a piece of paper whilst going through my ipod, which turned into rushing onto my laptop to make sure of the year each one was released, my list then turned into a top sixty odd, I managed to get it down to fifty and left it there.

A few days later I decided to pick twenty five, after many arguments with myself, and sent it off...to which I was told that if I didn't submit a top ten, he wouldn't use it at all. I couldn't, so here's my top twenty five in order of year of release.

Jeniferever - Choose A Bright Morning [2006]

Oceansize - Everyone Into Position [2005]

Bear vs Shark - Terrorhawk [2005]

65daysofstatic - The Fall Of Math [2004]

Planes Mistaken For Stars - Up In Them Guts [2004]

Hot Snakes - Audit In Progress [2004]

The Wrens - The Meadowlands [2003]

The Weakerthans - Reconstruction Site [2003]

This Aint Vegas - Black Lung Captain [2003]

The Shins - Chutes Too Narrow [2003]

Sun Kil Moon - Ghosts Of The Great Highway [2003]

Reuben - Racecar Is Racecar Backwards [2003]

Million Dead - A Song To Ruin [2003]

Hell Is For Heroes - The Neon Handshake [2003]

Mclusky - Mclusky Do Dallas [2002]

Hot Water Music - Caution [2002]

The Cooper Temple Clause - See This Through And Leave [2002]

Interpol - Turn On The Bright Lights [2002]

Biffy Clyro - Blackened Sky [2002]

Beck - Sea Change [2002]

Converge - Jane Doe [2001]

Idlewild - 100 Broken Windows [2000]

Cursive - Domestica [2000]

The Appleseed Cast - Mare Vitalis [2000]

At The Drive-In - Relationship Of Command [2000]

...and yeah I know, I really should be putting some blurb under these but I started out really excited, then I started to make a playlist from these records on Spotify (naughtiesmixtape) and I just started to get tired and I'm trying to make my dinner too. Well I think The Wrens might be my all time favourite, noticed how little there is from the last couple of years, I'm guessing that will change if I ever think about this again. Classics yo...now onto my top records of 2009!

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Diet Pills - January Tour

Wowzers, it's almost 2010...it still feels so weird to type 2o1o.

Back to me, Leicester kids Diet Pills are going on tour around the county and Scotland in January. The dates are:

15th - Stockrooms, Sheffield w/ Cry Havoc + Tree Of Sores + Pudge
16th - Yorkshire House, Lancaster w/ Apes Fight Back + NASDAQ + Joyeux
17th - The 13th Note, Glasgow w/ Corpses + La Guerre
18th - The Fenton, Leeds w/ The Afternoon Gentlemen + Normal Man + (more tbc)
19th - The Buffalo, Cardiff w/ Smiler + Brandyman
20th - The Windmill, London w/ Dethscalator + The Good Wife + At A Crawl
21st - Hector's House, Brighton w/ Kid Pang + Everyone To The Anderson
22nd - Above All Practice Rooms, Margate w/ At A Crawl
23rd - The Rising Sun, Coventry (tbc)

31st - Chameleon, Nottingham w/ Victims + Dead In The Woods + The Afternoon Gentlemen

More info here


BronzeAge, who's first recorded song was featured on my recent podcast, have made the rest of their demo's available to download in a nice little package. I was eager to hear what these guys sound like, considering the four are ex-members of Public Relations Exercise, the track "Amberola" didn't disappoint. The other three songs are all aces too, "Ghana" is a personal highlight for me.

Here's a little snippet from the bands bio:
"The band’s sound is a distinct departure from their previous output; combining epic sound-scapes with angular indie riffs and dual vocal interplay. Early demos have now been recorded by Field Records owner and producer Tim Waterfield. Expect to hear music and gigs later in the year."

You can find the EP from either their myspace, Last.fm, the facebook fan page or through Soundcloud. YEAAAAH!

Also, if you live in or around Leicester, catch the boys supporting LaFaro at the Firebug on January 20th.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Wanchope - Careful By The Fire

No, not that one!

Wanchope are a little musical project put together by Henry of Dartz! and Chris of protectors in an attempt to reach the dizzy heights, fame and fortune that come with of having the Christmas number one single. Some snizzle:

Right, here's the plan:

Henry's gonna record some music and send it to Chris. Chris is gonna write some lyrics and sing on it. Ideal.

"Careful By The Fire" is our first attempt. Darren Moore played drums on it and Evelyn Burke sang on it. Sound.

The single is available to download for free, you can find it on their last.fm here or if you're not into that kind of thing, you can also listen to it on their myspace page here. Either way, it's EPICALLY SWEET.

Friday, 4 December 2009

thesearchivesaremonuments podcast: volume one (Dec 2009)

...is here!


1. Switzerland - Fat, Single and Ready To Mingle (3.04)
Derby (UK). Switzerland play the jamz, much like Cap'n Jazz/Colour/Tubelord.

2. Men - Calculators (1.41)
Norwich (UK). Men play gruff punk, have great beards but still love a catchy pop twist.

3. Bronze Medals - I Lost The Map (3.52)
Nuneaton (UK). Bronze Medals are the English Minus The Bear...kinda.

4. Mane Horse - Bugsby (2.27)
Fresno, California (US). Some of that great Indie that sounds like it's from the old Midwest.

5. Superman Revenge Squad - Idiot Food (2.45)
Croydon (UK). Full on one man singer-songwriter assault armed with just a acoustic guitar.

6. BronzeAge - Amberola (5.35)
Leicester (UK). Ex Public Relations Exercise boys gone soft.

7. These Waves - Want Owt (2.40)
Derby (UK). Post-Hardcore with all the hooks.

8. Footnotes - I've Never Been To Easter Island (2.34)
Clementon, New Jersey (US). Another perfect slice of emo from the US.

9. Kids In Cars - Lord Of The Land (5.13)
Leicestershire (UK). A bit like Arcade Fire mixing it with Radiohead...but with haunting lyrics.

10. Mark Fernando - This Is My Day! (2.55)
Nottingham/Leicester (UK). Like loads of great bands mixed into one man and you can even sing along.

All music was used after permission was granted by the bands and artists. All the songs featured are the bands own work.

Please check out all the bands myspace pages and support them, most of them have music they're willing to give away for free, some have records coming out in the near future so get behind that like I will.

Thanks for listening and a special thanks to all the bands and artists that got involved. Volume two is already being made!

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Gregk Foley - Troubled Bones EP (2009)

Gregk Foley is a young singer-songwriter from Horsham in the UK, apparently he's been singing, playing and writing music since the age of eleven. He cites his influences as the Buckleys and Nick Drake as well as modern song smiths such as Mike Kinsella and Luke Pickett.

One of those influences you can easily pick out from listening to this EP, I am talking about Mike Kinsella. I'm totally on board with Mike Kinsella, in fact any of the Kinsella's so I'm already more interested than usual. Gregk has only been doing the solo thing since winter 2008 but this is actually his second EP release, the first being "Hollow Lane" (check his myspace on how to purchase that).

I have no idea how old Gregk is but I'm going to go out my way to say his songwriting is beyond his young years, the lyric content is there, relationships, life, loneliness, being optimistic and pessimistic in the same verse. All the traits of an Owen record, without copying his whole style. All four tracks are catchy in their own right, Racing Hearts being the main contender for catchiest acoustic song of the year and the standout song on this EP for me.

The additional instruments floating around in the background are almost perfect for the structure of these songs, arranged in a subtle manner that they don't drown out Gregk's vocals or strumming but just so you know they're there and they mean business. The glockenspiel on Icarian for example is so delicate and warm, it reminds me a little of This Town Needs Guns *I can't think of the song I'm trying to get at, it might not even be TTNG at all* but not as apathetic.

Anyway, definitely check out Gregk on his myspace, download the EP if you like what you hear and pass the word on, this guy needs more exposure, especially further up the country. There's a few dates on his gig calendar too so try and make them if you can.

Gregk Foley myspace

The Crown Vandals - The Guenevere EP

The Crown Vandals

...feature Tim Beeler on Acoustic Guitar and Lead Vocals and Tim Keen styling the Violin, Drums, Vocals, Bass and Synth. Beeler is from New Hampshire in the US and Keen hails from Melbourne in sunny old Australia, at first I thought it was one of those great projects that pits two guys from different sides of the world together by the internet, sending vocal recordings to one another and so on. It seems I'm wrong, they met in Montreal (you'll have to ask them the details, I wasn't there) Canada, where they now record music together, I guess they live there too but I'm not one to assume the obvious.

Influenced equally by the quirky, overdriven folk of Elephant 6 bands (I'm good at reading) and even cite Jeff Mangum as an influence (my reading skills are testing once again). With those references made, it means that it will always be worth my ears hearing their output and these guys deliver. "Guenevere" even sounds like it wouldn't be out of place on In The Aeroplane Over The Sea.

Enough of The Neutral Milk Hotel love in though, this is a band in their own right, these guys are more than a one trick pony, the rest of the EP is pretty strong and catchy. It's a bit lazy to call this Folk, it feels more than that, this almost sounds like what I wanted Arcade Fire to sound like the only time I listened to them...and isn't there more than two members in that band?

This really isn't a review, is just to tell you that the guys are giving away this EP for free, isn't that nice? You can find it from these links underneath, go on:


Life Status Update: Mariah Carey

...she is still very much alive, singing other people's one hit wonders and making those fantastic slow motion videos. Rejoice asshats, the world just stayed as lame.

Though she seems to think she's actually in MANband Take That, here is a signed photograph:
(I, in no way, took time out of my busy life to make this image, I found it underneath my bed).

I'm off to listen to N-Dubz (Ndubz?). Serious "I Need You" is possibly my favourite song EVA.