We swear this isn't an ironic listening. We love Beyoncé and 4. OK, we might unironically skip straight to track 5, 'Party', produced by Kanye West and with rap by Andre3000, because we ain't no stay-home-mums that need all those ballads about being broken hearted and finding the right person. But, after that, the album turns into a beautiful compilation of classic r'n'b, soul and a bit of sweat-inducing booty tracks - not too many though - that sound surprisingly courageous considering the actual state of pop music. And for that, we bow down and hail Queen B. P.S. Get the deluxe version, for those extra couple of amazing tracks.
The name of this label has been interpreted in many ways; from 'bass-seekey' to 'base-ike', but the correct way describes exactly what this label is about: BASIC. Bassike delivers easily breezily cut staples with an interesting little twist that keeps them from being your run of the mill. For those that live in climates like that of Australia (where Bassike hails from) or Brazil, you'll know how easy it is to make fashion faux pas when the weather gets hot and the prospect of wearing anything but a bathing suit becomes slightly unappealing; Bassike is all and everything you need.
Before watching HBO's Game of Thrones, I assumed the series would tend a bit more towards the blood-dripping Danish movie Valhalla Rising rather than fairy-tale stories a lá 'Lord of the Rings'; and for that I didn't really like the series at the beginning. But slowly, I found myself submitting to tales of bad kings, midget juggernauts, savage warriors and... dragons. And that happened probably because there aren't exactly good guys and bad guys here, like there are in Tolkien stories - and that is, of course, a simplification of his work. Another reason I relented to this series is because of the intriguing political backstage element that leads to the ever-happening dance of thrones. Oh, and did I mention the gratuitous nekkid-ness?
Of the slew of new spots having opened up in Sydney in the last six months, The Norfolk on Cleveland St in Surry Hills has been one fated with success. Owned by some of the same kids that have brought The Flinders back to life (and currently, it's incredibly quick onset of 'The Norms'), you'll undoubtedly find The Norfolk rammed with all kinds, vying for a bite, a beer and a spot in the garden out back. The aim of the game is to cultivate Aussie pub culture at it's best; and it's doing a pretty decent job so far - if only you could get a table!
Super Sad True Love Story is the third book from the writer of the best selling Absurdistan, Gary Shteyngart. Incidentally, I read him name dropped in Flavorpill's Ultimate Hipster Reading list and in the same sentence as James Franco (they're buds, apaprently) just before I finished his latest offering. Don't let any of that put you off, or take away any of the sad scary brilliance of Super Sad True Love Story; written from the perspective of one 39 year old Lenny Abramov, son of Russian immigrants and in love with the impossibly cute and cruel Eunice Park. A satire that cuts to the bone, Super Sad True Love Story is exactly it's title. And it's good.
Tuesday // August 02, 2011 at 15:57 // filed under Music
The Horrors are doing a beautiful public growth. From the energetic 60s garage sound from the early releases to the Creation Records-inspired music from their latest album Skying, the band became much more than simply haircuts, b-movie references and skinny jeans tighter than America's economy. And whilst the band is celebrating (once again) critical acclaim (Pitchfork just gave them a 7.5 for the new album, which is a lot considering they've been on NME's cover once), the boys put together a mix for FACT featuring their all time influences, like Velvet Underground, Primal Scream and Roxy Music. Very good.
Tracklist: T.2. – No More White Horses Tame Impala – Desire Be, Desire Go David Essex – Rock On Connan Mockasin – Unicorn In Uniform Primal Scream – Inner Flight US 69 – 2069 A Space Oddity Gene Clark – Some Misunderstanding Roxy Music – In Every Dream Home A Heartache Bobak, Jons, Malone – On A Meadow-Lea The Beach Boys – Caroline No The Velvet Underground – The Ocean The Beatles – Dear Prudence Aphrodite’s Child – The Four Horsemen Stereolab – Metronomic Underground
Thursday // April 28, 2011 at 15:30 // filed under Music
We LOVE Cat's Eyes. Why this side project from The Horror's frontman Faris Badwan and opera soprano and classical multi-instrumentalist Rachel Zeffira isn't more hyped is a mystery...Though it might change perhaps, with the self-titled debut album due out next week.
And that's because the album is awesome. And so is the video for 'Face In The Crowd' which visually, to me, kind of perfectly demonstrates what the album is like; utterly retro-fabulous and laced with thoroughly modern darkness. Directed by Michael Baldwin, it's dark, kaleidoscopic in a sparse kind of way; using lights, layers and bleeds along with bouncing reflections to make bad tv reception totally artful and totally cool. Look:
Wednesday // February 16, 2011 at 16:00 // filed under Music
Cat’s Eyesstill doesn’t have enough songs for us to call
it our favorite new band, but I suppose we'll be able to finally say that
after the 28th of February, when the band releases its first EP, Broken Glass, via Polydor.
At least we will if this new EP tease, a song called ‘Cat’s Eyes’, is anything like the
other tracks that will be released.
It's fuzzy garage
pop that people just don’t make nowadays; unless it’s under tons and tons of layers of white
noise. Faris takes the lead vocal, with a sound deep and thick to contrast
with Rachel’s backing vocals which are soaked in 60s effects. The bass might be what
guides the song, but the constant change of the drums and the irregular guitar
and piano noises are really the highlights of the song for me.
And there's the cover of Grinderman’s new single ‘When My Baby Comes’, which is nothing
if not brilliant. Starting quietly, with Rachel and a guitar noise in the background that
keeps building until it becomes a wall of noise with Farris taking Nick Cave’s
place alongside extra guitars by Luke
Tristram from Flats (who also happens to be a model to pay rent). Frankly, this remix is so good that it made me chase
up Nick Cave’s discography (I know, my friends laughed at me when I was asking
around for recommendations of where to begin).
Tuesday // August 18, 2009 at 15:53 // filed under Music
The Horrors have
a new video out brought to you by NIN's
Trent Reznor. Yes, you read it
right. The British psychedelic band with the tightest skinny jeans in the whole
world is releasing 'Mirror's Image', the third single from their amazing second
album Primary Colours, with the help
of the American band Nine Inch Nails. All this love come from the fact that The
Horrors are opening the USA shows for NIN while Trent is trying to be more pro-active on the music scene (aka he used to just complain a lot on his now dead Twitter page).
The video is what you expect from a song that has been
released on an album called Primary Colours whilst being called 'Mirror's Image':
it's psychedelic colours mirrored in a cheap-looking video. It's like taking acid in the national park on Carnival day. You
shouldn't watch if you're scared of butterflies or if your eyes can't
stand more than 10 thousand colours per second.
The Horrors - Mirror's Image
'Mirror's Image', the single, doesn't share the trip feel of the 'Mirror's Image' on the album. That is because the intro has been cut off, but there's absolutely no reason for you not to enjoy this dirty mix of heavy bass, wave guitars, hypnotic synths, 80's drums and raw vocals.
Are you ready kids? Aug 26th is where it kicks off with a live event in Bristol
at Start the Bus where The Black Lips are in CTRL and going to be causing a ruckus, roping in The Big Pink, The Sticks and Thee Vicars.
EPIC. Two days prior to the event, The Black Lips' latest single is being released in the UK, entitled 'Drugs'. The b-side is a cover of 'I'll Be With You'; the original a lazily jangly and sentimental kind of track with a vaguely piss-taking video that the band obviously had a hilarious time making in all it's nostalgic and lo-fi glory.
Black Lips - I'll Be With You
The cover has been given the creepy treatment by Lumina (Faris Badwan from The Horrors in another guise). Full of creaks, low droning keys and Faris' softly seductive vocal cop it below too.
Friday // July 03, 2009 at 12:30 // filed under Music
The song is from 2007, the video from 2008, but its part of
the 2009 album X.Enc - and for
many different reasons, it is one of the songs of my life since its first
release. 'I'm Ill', from British trio NEiLS CHiLDREN, has a lyric with the special power of being part of everybody's romantic
life in some moment, but somehow fitting in a really particular way. The post punk
instrumental (and also the voice) reminds me of the Cure when they could still deliver
surprisingly warm hits with a dark glint.
Besides being on
for the last ten years (!) X.Enc is the first album of Neils Children
career. It features some songs that have been released in their mini-albums,
EPs and singles, but it is mainly composed of new songs. The word pop here
wouldn't do justice to their music, but the album is by far the band's poppiest moment - which slowly moved from a garage sound to a more melodic post
Oddly enough for a
band that started getting some recognition after the Horrors got first hyped,
the video for 'I'm Ill' is somehow a mix of the The Horrors two last videos: 'Sea
Within A Sea' and 'Who Can Say'. The video shows the band playing in an old theatre
while images are being project over them. Watch the video and download the demo below as see if this
song can be one of your favorites as well.
Thursday // April 23, 2009 at 15:29 // filed under Music
'Who Can Say' single cover
The Horrors talent has grown so much that when you see them
playing on the newly released video for 'Who Can Say', it looks like they're
just a bunch of punky/gothicky/creepy looking boys dubbing an old band. That's because you can't
link that mature, heavy and furious song to those skinny young things. And not to
mention that the last time we heard something similar as good as that, it was probably listening to something recorded twenty years ago by someone who would
take drugs for breakfast and tussle with the police as a daily backyard game. And
frankly the boys seem too fragile for that.
The Horrors - Who Can Say
Fortunately, their new album Primary Colours,
to be released on the 4th of May, doesn't rely only on its singles 'Sea
Within a Sea' and 'Who Can Say'. The other eight tracks present further expand the poetic, although noisy journey through one of the year's best album. I just
hope it doesn't effect yet another age of uber thin lads wearing too much eye make up
and pointy shoes.
'Who Can Say', the single, will be released by May 11th
and it will feature the b-side 'You Could Never Tell'.
Monday // March 30, 2009 at 17:33 // filed under Music
already twitted how much I adore the new direction that the skinny neo-goth lads from The
Horrors are taking, but haven't yet posted about it here. So let's ignore that I'm a
bit late with it and instead, let's be thankful that the 'Sea Within a Sea' is a timeless
piece of modern music that has gone way beyond their whole back catalog to date. It's
actually quite a big deal to make an epic 8 minute comeback single that grabs
and holds your attention the whole way through because it manages to keep evolving; from the start sounding like
any other '60s garage music with synths reminiscent of Portishead.
influence was, of course, added by Geoff Barrow from Portishead, who took over production duties of
The Horrors' new album Primary Colours, planning to be released on the 4th of May
via XL Recordings. And in order to celebrate that, the band is giving away the
new single for free on their official site. But wait! There's more. They've also created an amazing video clip directed by Douglas Hart from Jesus and Mary Chain; who also
did videos for My Bloody Valentine, Libertines, Paul Weller and Primal Scream.
The Horrors - Sea Within a Sea
Check back later
to read about The Horror's Tom Furse and Rhys Webb's side project called Spider
and the Flies; currently another favourite of mine.