hank Tuesday, November 25, 2014
If you haven't heard, WLFY is switching up how we accept music submissions going forward. All you have to do is add your track to our Soundcloud Group and it will definitely be considered (HERE). I'm loving the new system because I'm finding great music faster and more efficiently...really excited to share all these gems with you.
Our first find is a deep synth track by Sandy. It's been up on Soundcloud for eight months, but we're not snobs about being relevant or skipping on sounds that have been around for a while. It's a slow motion head bobber, that swirls in layers of guitar, dripping drum beats, and whispering vocals. I'm not sure why this track hasn't recieved more attention, but in one listen it's easy to discover that Sandy is a special band to keep an ear out for.
Zach Hart Monday, November 24, 2014
Click the play button icon to listen to individual songs, right-click on the song title to download an mp3, or grab a zip file of the full 22-track compilation through Dropbox here.
UNITED STATES: We Listen For You Jenna Dean - Blown Funk-based hip hop is alive and well in the form of this brilliant track from Jenna Dean. Smooth guitars open into a locked groove that swarms around a controlled lyrical outpouring. It's a song that builds and builds, never letting the listener down.
ARGENTINA: Zonaindie Tomás Ferrero - Cuando Te Hablo In March 2013, a mixed group of musicians gathered together in Cordoba and Buenos Aires to play some songs and sound pieces composed with lyrics taken from the work of a federal collective of artists called Esta Vida No Otra. Some of them recorded the results several months later, and those tracks were then released as a compilation titled 15 Artistas Cantan Esta Vida No Otra. The song we have selected from this album, also available for free at Bandcamp, is Cuando Te Hablo by Tomás Ferrero from the band Rayos Láser.
AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They? Open Swimmer - Sugar Bowl Open Swimmer's version of pop is jarring, even discordant at first, but it's this blatantly simple approach that has us hooked. (Dirty Projectors fans, pay attention now.) Sugar Bowl is a brilliant introduction to the band; playful yodelling is cut and pasted along a steady 4/4 drum beat, while witty banter takes the fore. Songwriter Ben TD was based in Glasgow for seven years, touring extensively and landing multiple sessions on BBC Radio One and a stint at T in the Park before settling in Melbourne. The band comprises some of Melbourne's most admired independent music alumni (The Harpoons, Seagull). Expect to hear a lot more from this group.
BRAZIL: Meio Desligado Alessandra Leão - Mofo Alessandra Leão shows off her experimental side with Mofo, taken from her new EP, Pedra De Sal. Avoiding the world music sound from other works, this song has dark music and some weird programming that fits the angst of the lyrics.
CANADA: Ride The Tempo Beach Season - Midnights There's not actually much out there on Beach Season besides the fact the project is from Calgary. The smooth vocals of Midnights complements the hip-hop influenced rhythms. This is a duo that won't be much of a mystery for long.
CHILE: Super 45 The Dagger Complex - Velvet Moon The Dagger Complex were formed in 2013 by Hernán Díaz (vocals/guitar), Michaela Boman (vocals), Abraham Vicencio (guitar), Gonzalo Chandía (bass) and Ignacio Álvarez (drums). Their debut EP, Vibrant, released by Beast Discos, is a collection of songs inspired by early 90s shoegaze and dream-pop, one foot set in the cadence of bands such as Slowdive or Mojave 3, the other one in the fuzzy mass of noise of The Jesus And Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine.
DENMARK: All Scandinavian IAmFire - Burn Your Halo IAmFire have their debut EP ready and apparently it sounds like a "massive drug experience" to frontman Peter Dolving. Come December, he and the rest of the gang will be releasing this groovy stoner metal dragon and here's Burn Your Halo as a MAP exclusive download.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera Gnómico & Victor Victor - Mesita De Noche Hip-hop producer Gnómico has always been interested in preserving Dominican musical culture for the present and future generations. Now he's embarking on a new project called Sinergia that will add an urban twist to many songs from past decades. The first one is Mesita De Noche, a famous 90s bachata by Victor Victor, now remade with a funky fresh attitude, Gnómico's own rap verses and Mr Victor himself singing its signature chorus.
ECUADOR: Plan Arteria Da Culkin Clan - Sometimes You Make Love From the city of Cuenca, Da Culkin Clan represents the most weird and experimental contemporary hip hop of the country. Their lyrics and music are a bunch of random, powerful and creative ideas - a mixture of carnival and fiction figures. From debut album Special Dark, we present its first single, Sometimes You Make Love.
GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda Babis Papadopoulos - Spring Babis Papadopoulos blends the organic nature of Greek traditional folk music, rhythms rich with contemporary elements and avant-garde jazz and succeeds in creating a sequence of lush, varied and nostalgic tracks. Spring, the splendid first preview from his forthcoming album, Joy In Pain, Pain In Joy, is dominated by a delicate, recurring melody in bouzouki, mournful violins, a broody viola and the warm restlessness of his guitar.
INDONESIA: Deathrockstar Barokka - Barapantura Dangdut Koplo is one of the most famous electro genres in the shady underground clubs of Indonesia. This trashy dance anthem was created by the guy behind Dubyouth as an introduction.
IRELAND: Hendicott Writing SPIES - Moosehead Hyped up by authorities as hefty as The Guardian and NME, Dublin's SPIES are widely seen as the city's next big thing. Moosehead is the latest of their slow to emerge singles, released on the band's own Trout Records label. Leaning on the same glorious desolation that fronted Factory Records' world-renowned soundscapes, it's a jittery, dingy piece of indie-rock that brings atmospheric depression up to date. Think social awkwardness meets Interpol, and put a hefty bookmark on this space.
ITALY: Polaroid Klam - Mess With The Best, Die In A Nuclear Test On the cover of Bleak, the debut album by Klam, there is a foggy road, a city in the shadow, a storm seems to be approaching. It's a perfect introduction to the sound of the band: dark shoegaze with post-punk sharp edges. They can create hazy clouds of feedback, but they can also write vibrant and trembling songs like this one.
JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies Toyohirakumin - Cliff If the term 'vaporwave' gives you chills, either turn back now or try to think beyond whatever concepts of the internet microgenre you have. Toyohirakumin makes music that is often filed as - and in some cases sounds like - vaporwave, but Cliff is far more than an exercise in aesthetics. It is a slow burner, and a minimal one at that, but a compelling throbber from a promising Japanese producer.
MALTA: Stagedive Malta Fastidju - Kukkuzejt Fastidju was born when Nigel Baldacchino (essentially a non-musician) started conceiving vague sung melodies and aural structures for existing pieces of writing compiled for the exhibition, Sajda, in 2012. Nigel started seeking collaborations with electronic producers he admired, such as Istishhad Hheva and Cygna, to provide flesh to his musical skeletons. An album was devised and a band took on the task of developing some of the structures - and even creating new songs. Cygna ultimately ended up being the main crucial guiding light in the final studio phase.
MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika Pumcayó - Don Jacinto Hailing from Guadalajara, Pumcayó is a band that weaves their region's folkloric heritage, with patterns found on Grizzly Bear or Fleet Foxes' music. Following a Kino-Pravda aesthetic - as in Dziga Vertov's Soviet documentary from the 20s - the video for the song Don Jacinto follows the semi-industrial art of making colourful papercrafts, a simple decor in Mexican celebrations with a beautifully complex craft.
PERU: SoTB Mind Blank - Cocaine Mirella Bellido is the songwriter and lead singer of Mind Blank. These Days is her debut five-track EP that moves through different emotions such as anxiety, perversion, obsession and regret. Mind Blank, as defined by its creator, is a balance between the emotional and rational.
PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco? A Jigsaw - No True Magic Coimbra band A Jigsaw are back with a new album, No True Magic. Jorri and João Rui, the two members of the folksy alternative band, invited Carla Torgerson (The Walkabouts) to join them on vocals for one of the tracks, Black Jewelled Moon. They also produced the record, which will find new fans in those who appreciate artists such as Tindersticks, Leonard Cohen or Tom Waits.
PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie Los Vigilantes - Ahí Ya No Estoy After an exhaustive and intense European tour, garage-rockers Los Vigilantes returned to Puerto Rico with a new record under their belt. Aptly titled Al Fin (At Last), it perfectly showcases the band's brand of melodic surf punk: both infectious and melancholy, it makes your bones rattle, a bit from pain and a bit from joy. Los Vigilantes recently shared a video for the record's second single, Ahí Ya No Estoy, in which a scorned lover wills himself into feeling hopeful for the future with a little help from his friends, cheering us all up in the process. Dance those blues away with Los Vigilantes.
SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop Billy Jeffrey Jnr - Eternal Blue Billy Jeffrey Jnr's debut album, Eternal Blue, received modest attention when it was released in early 2014 but - thanks to the power of word-of-mouth and mesmeric live performances - it continues to gain the Glasgow songwriter a host of new fans and followers with each passing week. Possessing the same otherworldly quality as Bon Iver, it is a record full of elegant moments, with title track Eternal Blue being a personal favourite.
SOUTH KOREA: Indieful ROK We Hate JH - 20 Emo/power-pop band We Hate JH made the finals of this year's edition of the foremost South Korean rookie competition, Hello Rookie. A brand new single will be out very soon, but 20 is the charming and extremely likeable opening track off the official debut EP Officially, We Hate JH released earlier this year.
SPAIN: Musikorner Role - Shrine II Role are a four-piece from Madrid whose sound is influenced by dream-pop, trip-hop and even art-rock. They have played live at Valle Eléctrico, one of the most important experimental electronic club nights in Spain, and their first album is due to be released in the first quarter of 2015.
Zach Hart Monday, November 24, 2014
Foxygen's ...And Star Power is a gigantic mess of an album. Weighing in at 22 songs and almost 1.5 hours of speaker time, Foxygen seems to be determined to break every rule of an album these days. Hardly anything seems well crafted. There's an ELO-esque 4 track suite in the middle of the damn thing. There's a song title "Matress Warehouse" followed by one named "666" for God's sake. Songs wonder off into the woods, get lost, set up camp, never get heard from again only to show at your sisters wedding with a beard and bird that they talk to in Portuguese. The retro sound is pure plagiarism at times. And, possibly worst of all, you get the feeling that Foxygen feels like they invented the 60s not just that they're referencing it. It's pretentious, annoying, and frankly I can't stop listening to it.
If there were ever a more startling, well, shit guys I didn't know you had THAT in you, enjoy today's Track of the Day a 6+ min sonic shitstorm that I'm still not sure how Foxygen makes work except by getting the ghost of Lou Reed and having it try out for the band.
hank Monday, October 27, 2014
UNITED STATES: We Listen For You The Fervor - Moment Of Truth Louisville, Kentucky's The Fervor mixes in lush orchestration with pounding vocals that conjure up thoughts of Neko Case. The music is filled with small moments of beauty that once heard as a complete piece results in a blissful listen.
ARGENTINA: Zonaindie Ubika - Fahrenheit Hard rock guitars, solid bass and drums plus strong female vocals are the formula behind Ubika. Fahrenheit is the first single from their latest album, Amigos Del Bosque, and it's inspired by Ray Bradbury's novel. The song has a video directed by Diego Stickar, which you can watch here.
AUSTRALIA: Who The Bloody Hell Are They? The Twoks - First Light The Twoks are a Melbourne two-piece comprising Xani Kolac on violin and vocals, and Mark Leahy on drums. Initially the solo instrumental project of Kolac, who studied jazz and improvisation at Victorian College of the Arts, the duo is now renowned on the local live circuit for their unpredictable sets which feature Kolac on loop station and a smorgasbord of effects. On The Twoks' latest release, First Light EP - which boasts crisp production from Tony Buchen (The Preatures) - Kolac's improvisations have been whittled down to concise retro-pop tunes in the vein of Pat Benatar or Kate Bush.
BRAZIL: Meio Desligado Baleia - Breu Breu is one of the strongest songs from Baleia's debut album, released last year. They first caught the attention of the indie press in Brazil with a jazzy cover of Justin Timberlake but in their album they show a handful of influences, resulting in experimental indie-rock that dabbles in baroque pop and folk.
CANADA: Ride The Tempo Friends Forever - As Long As You Call Me The duo of Jordan Pearson (New Zebra Kid/Halcyon) and Sam McDougall don't have many songs yet under the moniker Friends Forever, but As Long As You Call Me shows off vintage 80s synth-pop inspiration with sparking melodies.
CHILE: Super 45 Magaly Fields - Love Scene Magaly Fields is a duo formed by Tomás Stewart (guitar) and Diego Cifuentes (drums) who rock fast and strongly. They released their debut album Chromatic Days in September through Algo Records. Their first single is Love Scene, a fictional tune about a rotten relationship that fantasies that the romance never really happened.
DENMARK: All Scandinavian Hit The Hay - Long Way Home One of my favorite Danish bands right now, Hit The Hay travel dusty American roads with bags packed with catchy Scandinavian melancholy. Here is my first meeting with them, Long Way Home, as a MAP exclusive download, but do also check out the great Never Wanted Out and Running.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: La Casetera Doob - Put On Your Seat Belt (Brenda M Remix) True island vibes can be felt all over the work of Doob, a young producer from La Vega who spends his time remixing, and ranging between soul and progressive house on tracks of his own. The original Put On Your Seat Belt song can be heard here, but the one featuring on this MAP edition is a Nu-disco remix by Brenda M, a DJ and collaborator from the neighboring Santiago province.
ECUADOR: Plan Arteria Estereo Humanzee - Insaciable In less than one year, Estereo Humanzee return to MAP with their new EP, 8min 20seg. This three-song EP, that came with their new live album Signaux Lumineux, is a real statement of the evolution of their electronic sound.
FRANCE: Your Own Radio Singapour - Paris SA Singapour is the new project from the duo Mondrian, who are composed of Roman Oswald and Lee Gordon. On their track Paris SA (Paris Société Anonyme) they present the Paris you don't really want to know: €10,000 per square meter, €3 coffee, stressful life. It's the storytelling of a complicated relationship between Parisians and their city, a kind of "I love you… me neither".
GREECE: Mouxlaloulouda Dead Gum - Float Panagiotis Spoulos, as Dead Gum, mainly uses guitar and vocals through minimal effects to create instant songs, psychedelic collages and direct, stripped-down bursts. The music itself - partially improvised but fully psychographic - has anthropocentric characteristics and lo-fi character and flirts with punk, bedroom pop and analog noise. Float is the gripping opening track off his upcoming album, GAINER.
INDONESIA: Deathrockstar Megatruh - Annelies Megatruh come from Malang, a small city in the eastern part of Java with plenty of music talent, and Megatruh is one of the latest breed. After a series of painful things happened to frontman Kidung, he started a project influenced by post-punk, psychedelia and noise-rock with 90s sensibilities.
IRELAND: Hendicott Writing Conor Walsh - The Front West coast modern-classical pianist Conor Walsh has one foot in Ireland's contemporary scene through his toned-down samples and nuanced electronics. In the most part, though, his music exudes a mellow timelessness, taking the gorgeous throwback farmland of rural Mayo and converting it into a sound that's part film score, part desolate romance. At first listen this sounds like simple piano music; let it sit and The Front's gentle flow whisks you away.
ITALY: Polaroid Niagara - Vanillacola Niagara are a Turin-based experimental pop duo. They say their sound incorporates elements of electronic, psychedelic, Eastern and dance music, but I think it's more surprising than this. The track Vanillacola, from their second album Don't Take It Personally (out now on the UK label Monotreme), is a wonderful example of Niagara's elusive idea of music: Boards Of Canada synths that destroy a catchy pop structure, while the vocals become more obsessive as the melody gets hypnotic.
JAPAN: Make Believe Melodies The Somedays - Remember Me There is no shortage of indie-pop music in Japan. There has never been a lack of twee-leaning, ennui-dunked groups in this country. Osaka group The Somedays have found a smart way to stand out from the pack. Remember Me is anchored by all the regular trappings of the style - guitar, drums, melancholy vocals - but is given a buzzy edge thanks to the presence of synthesizers, lending a futuristic vibe to their sound.
MEXICO: Red Bull Panamérika Pájaro Sin Alas - Alfombra Mágica Mental Rodolfo Ramos Castro aka Pájaro Sin Alas ("Bird With No Wings") not only penned one of the most heartbreaking songs of the first half of this decade, but also became a figure whose slow output is worth the wait. Alfombra Mágica Mental functions as bitter sips of shared realities that strangely link the mystery of the Arabian Nights with the barren landscapes of his home state of Chihuahua in northern Mexico.
PERU: SoTB Las Amigas De Nadie - Should Not Let It Go Human Dress is the new album of Las Amigas De Nadie, released two years after Sincronia, a record that created great interest in the Latin American music scene thanks to its originality. Human Dress gives us a much deeper insight into the experimental melodies that the band introduced in their previous album. Should Not Let It Go is their first single, an addictive and remarkable mix of electronic textures and distorted vocals.
PORTUGAL: Posso Ouvir Um Disco? Pernas De Alicate - Pássaros (Casa Para Pássaros, Parte I) Pernas De Alicate is not really a band but a project started by drummer Carlos BB, who is also a recording studio owner, and Sara Feio, an illustrator. They invited some of their friends and acquaintances to contribute their art, music, illustrations, photography and film for Pernas De Alicate. The music was recorded over Carlos BB's drums, with every musician invited on a one-by-one basis. The video for Pássaros (Casa Para Pássaros, Parte I) was directed by Sara.
PUERTO RICO: Puerto Rico Indie Samalot - Valle De Luz After two intense albums as part of experimental rock group Tachdé, Fernando Samalot has created his own niche in the prolific Puerto Rican music scene with his introspective and meditative songs. With the steady hand of engineer and producer Héctor "Stontape" Hernández, Fernando has created musical landscapes filled with desire, hope and wisdom that seem to travel like wind from our lush Caribbean mountains down to the intricate river channels of the island. Samalot's most recent EP - available through Bandcamp - features two "sister" songs, Rayo De Luz and Valle De Luz. Both are definitely faces of the same coin.
SCOTLAND: The Pop Cop The Xcerts - Pop Song The Xcerts have been my favourite Scottish rock band since their debut album In The Cold Wind We Smile was released in 2009, with its impassioned choruses and gripping moments of melancholy. It wasn't difficult to fall under its spell. While the follow-up record was deliberately rougher around the edges, their imminent third album, There Is Only You, out on November 3, is an exhibition of The Xcerts' songwriting strength. The melodic explosion of the aptly-named Pop Song, a MAP exclusive download, is a case in point. Check out the video for it here.
SPAIN: Musikorner YDVST - 2044 YDVST breathes mysticism and irrealities. His first EP, DVST / CUTS was written during silent and uncertain nights. It was released by the Sweat Taste label and contains experimental essences of ambient, downtempo and vaporware. This mysterious yet captivating artist from Madrid will certainly develop his projects at his own pace.
Zach Hart Wednesday, October 15, 2014
The music on Terrors' "Two Words" acts as the sonic presentation of life opening and closing. "Two Words" is a slow walk through the mind of Elijah Forrest who presents melancholiac dreams under the name Terrors for his newest Bathetic Records release. Forrest is in the middle grounds of singing and speaking; his voice a gentle matching tide with the backing melody...both wash up to shore...where the music goes back to sea, his voice flutters forward to land.
from Ensorcell Qori
Zach Hart Friday, October 10, 2014