|The Cathode Ray |
20 April 2015
|Edinburgh alternative outfit The Cathode Ray release their highly anticipated second album Infinite Variety on April 20th 2015 through Stereogram Recordings.|
Sonically, Infinite Variety is an experimental affair - acoustic in places; more electronic in others; punkier, funkier and proggier too - but still recognisably The Cathode Ray. Its also, very loosely, a concept album.
Although Infinite Variety visually references the natural world both through the artwork and aurally in the music, it also refers lyrically to the human condition more specifically, our emotions. Whilst not strictly speaking a concept album, the eleven tracks do plot a loose narrative which form a song cycle.
Divided roughly into three sections we travel from futility, adversity and negativity to hope, redemption and positivity via a period of change, reassessment and insight.
1. Backed Up/Resist/Nowhere At All/Dont Waste Your Words give us fear, paranoia, lust and betrayal.
2. Buck The Trend/No Holds Barred/Eureka Moment! equates to transformation, honesty and realisation.
3. This Force Of Nature/Torn Apart/The Eyes Are The Window To The Soul/Saving Grace celebrates love in all its forms: found, lost, squandered and unconditional.
Backed Up, the album opener, is a slow burning epic with both post-punk and psychedelic flourishes in places. It builds from nothing, via some dissonant chords from Steve Fraser, to a huge crescendo with a sing-a-long chorus, only to break down to where it all began at the end. Echoes of Syd-era Floyd, and 70s Bowie are detectable.
Resist, the single, is short and snappy at just over 2 minutes long. Its a sort of crazy punk rock/krautrock oompah hybrid. Like Wire kicking Blur up the arse as one critic has already put it.
Nowhere At All could be described as a first cousin of earlier material like Lost & Found and Whats It All About?, so probably the most recognisably Cathode Ray-like track on the album. Steve Fraser and Jeremy Thoms guitar parts interlock as one, whilst David Macks metallic percussion recalls Depeche Mode at their industrial peak.
The Cathode Rays glam-rock roots are exposed on the Iggy/Glitter Band stomp of Dont Waste Your Words, a paean to stop messing about and get to the point.
Buck The Trend is part German motoric, part L.A. Woman, part Art Rock. If Talking Heads had relocated to Berlin in 1978, they might have sounded like this.
No Holds Barred has a sleazy riff-based slow groove, which gives way to a Stones-inspired chorus. Shades of latter day Orange Juice also pervade proceedings.
Eureka Moment! features tribal drums from David Mack in the verses which meet sequenced electro-disco in the choruses. Features both vibra-slap and tubular bells. Euro disco and Juju-era Banshees are discernible influences.
On This Force Of Nature, love is the force under discussion. This is a joyous dance/rock hybrid with some neat guitar interplay from Fraser & Thoms, reminiscent of New Order in acoustic/electric guitar mode.
Torn Apart is a veritable sonic cathedral which drone noiseniks will love. My Bloody Valentine and The Cocteau Twins are evoked, and a tender ballad lurks beneath the surface.
The original demo of The Eyes Are The Window To The Soul sounds a bit like early Cure. Neil Baldwins flanged bass has remained, but this has ended up closer to the Isley Brothers (according to Roy Moller), with some tasty fuzz guitar lines from Steve Fraser.
Album closer, Saving Grace is another epic at almost seven minutes long. A two part song, it starts off as a gentle semi-acoustic ballad with an almost Hawaiian feel with Thoms crooning over the top Then, part two takes over and all hell breaks loose with a motorik-prog wig out
Press Quotes for The Cathode Ray
"'The Cathode Ray' is an exhilarating, magnificent experience." - Penny Black Music
"Spry debut from Scottish post punk veterans" Uncut 6/10
"The Cathode Ray' is, simply put, a cracking record." - Manic Pop Thrills
"An exciting journey, which takes in the sights of surf, glam and retro-futurism along the way." - Leonards Lair
"Jeremy Thoms' bands do not disappoint" - The Scotsman ****
"The Cathode Ray? Well and truly switched on." - Is This Music? ****
"Absolute quality - this deserves some attention." The Happening
"The album itself is a resounding success." The Sound Project ****
"They simply go from strength to strength." Leicester Bangs
"Gently bobbing, new wave/post punk, sparky, sprightly, exceedingly catchy" - Mudkiss Fanzine
Ben Williams asks ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ with new album
Superb debut album set for impact on April 13th
A Manchester based singer-songwriter who moulds the classic songwriting sound of Paul Simon with the laid back nature of Jack Johnson, Ben Williams is a difficult artist to pigeonhole and is all the better for it. His new self-produced album, ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’, has been seven years in the making, as Williams – earning a living as an in-demand session guitarist – wrote his own songs in the spare time he had between playing and recording with other artists.
With a clear passion for music, he wrote something like 60 songs over this period, of which the best 11 have been chosen to make up his debut album. Self-produced and featuring a selection of the finest musicians in Manchester, Williams has delivered a genuine gem of a debut. Often quirky, sometimes funny, and occasionally more reflective, the songs demonstrate a fantastic range of approaches and ideas.
Title track ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ was described by radio presenter Liam Bradford (BBC Radio Manchester) as his “favourite song of the year so far”, and it’s not hard to see why:
He's also just released a new video for track 'Hold Your Fire' here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZxz7dwW3GU
Having started as a busker, Ben Williams’ rise to prominence in the music industry has been truly impressive. As a session guitarist he has supported a who’s who of British talent, including Mick Hucknall, Lisa Stansfield, Will Young, Status Quo, Nile Rodgers and Chic, The Straits, M-People, Tim Minchin, Pink Martini. Meanwhile, playing his own material he has shared a stage with Baskery, Kristyna Myles Jon Kenzie.
Grammy award winning producer Ken Nelson (Coldplay, Paulo Nutini), who knows a great musician when he sees one, describes him as “an excellent guitarist and great to have around on a recording session”, while drummer and producer Steve White (Paul Weller, Style Council, Oasis) called him “great guitarist and top musician”. These are professionals who gained a position in the industry by being able to identify talent, and they see it in Ben Williams.
Having had a taste of success playing with other artists at South By South West festival in Texas as well as festivals in Italy, tours of France, and UK gigs at the Liverpool Echo arena, Indigo2 and Bridgewater Hall, Ben Williams is hungry to take his very own bit of the cherry.
And finally, if you were in any doubt as to how passionate Williams is about his songwriting, he also runs his own blog about songwriting - http://www.songwriterstalkaboutsongwriting.com/. Having interviewed people like Dan Wilson (co-writer of Adele’s ‘Someone Like You’), Ron Sexsmith, Chris Difford, Frank Turner and more, this is one songwriter who is keen to keep honing and learning his craft.
In the meantime, the new album drops on April 13th and is as impressive a debut as you’ll hear this year.
KIDS ON BRIDGES
'When The Needle Drops’ Feat. Shea Seger
SINGLE RELEASE + MUSIC VIDEO
Release Date: 4th May 2015 | Label: Wall of Sound
Kids On Bridges release ‘When The Needle Drops’ from their Top 30 UK charting Debut Album which is brimming full of instant hooks and electronic grooves which combine here to provide an instant ear worm.
Following Kids On Bridges recent critically acclaimed singles ‘Walls’ and ‘Bankers To Feed’ and a support slot with Grammy winner Beck, the band now release ‘’When The Needle Drops’ from their top 30 UK debut album ‘Kidology’.
‘When The Needle Drops’ is brimming with instant hooks and is certainly the most electronic outing by the Liverpudlian trio to date. Described as Phoenix meets New Order and reminiscent of Bowie’s ‘John I'm only Dancing’, this is a heavy electro dance groove and instant ear worm.
Consistent with Kids on Bridges two previous singles ‘When The Needle Drops’ is profoundly honest, looking at the modern culture of style over substance within the Arts as frontman Christian Bragg explains:
”It’s never about the quality of the songs, movie or book anymore, but the stats on social media. What happened to just getting a DJ to play a song because it’s a good song and not because of the hype or the Youtube views it’s gained. It should be about just playing a song that touches a nerve and that feeling you get when hearing a needle drop on the decks that shoots adrenaline through your veins and gives you a natural high.”
Kids On Bridges bring a refreshingly direct approach to proceedings and that is exemplified with ‘When The Needle Drops’both musically and visually as the accompanying video strikes home the message behind the song perfectly with faceless dummies taking centre stage. It is fair to say their message has been received loud and clear.
28th Feb - The Rafters, Maidstone
4th March - Barfly, Camden, London
8th March - The Mash House, Edinburgh
12th March - Kraak, Manchester
28th March - Threshold Festival, Liverpool
KIDS ON BRIDGES - ONLINE
KIDS ON BRIDGES - BAND MEMBERS
Christian Bragg (Lead Vocals) | Daniel Rankin (Bass, Keys & Backing Vocals) | Andrew Culshaw (Guitar & Backing Vocals)
Modern Family Unit ready to revitalise modern New Wave with single ‘Mmm mmm mm aah’
Single taken from upcoming album ‘Religion’, released April 27th
Manchester based duo Gary Hilton and Steve Southern are a songwriting duo who know how to make an impact. Marrying the classic 80s sounds of the New Wave to contemporary production values, their groove led, synth heavy tunes are dripping with atmosphere, rightly described by the band themselves as a ‘Burlesque groove’.
It’s a phrase which perfectly sums up the retro stylings and the filthy rhythms of both the band as a whole and their upcoming single ‘Mmm mmm mm aah’. Influenced by the likes of New Order, Depeche Mode and Joy Division as well as the theatricality of Gorillaz.
Gone Too Far
27 April 2015
Kosoti play the kind of folk/pop which is underpinned by the kind of song-writing nous that is really going to get people sitting up and taking notice.
If you like your music creative and atmospheric with strong vocal harmonies this is the band for you.
THE COURIER ONLINE
After a near death experience in 2013, lead singer and songwriter Allan Hyslop realised he needed to treasure every moment of his life by doing what he loved most, writing and performing music.
Allan explains "Kosoti is the result of a few musicians and friends getting together to write songs and enjoy each others company. It started about eighteen months ago when a change in personnel gave us the impetus to try something different from what we'd previously been doing. The sound emerged and we knew there was something special being born..."
The new single 'Gone Too Far' was produced by Adrian Hall and follows the success of 2014's 'Bark and Sticks' which saw widespread airplay for the band. 'Gone Too Far' is a laid back track with sensitive yet powerful overtones and a rousing chorus mourning a relationship that has gone awry
Having already performed sessions for BBC Introducing, Amazing Radio and Metro Radio in their short career, 'Gone Too Far' is set to take the band to an even larger fanbase who are drawn to Kosoti's beautiful vocal harmonies which are very much their trademark.
All tracks written by:
Allan Hyslop, George Patrick Hutton, Seth Tinsley, Christos William Worsley, Rebecca Gregson, Paul William Holdsworth
|Tape Runs Out|
Friends / Flowers
Ear to Ear Records
30 March 2015
|Cambridge indiepop OUT MAR. 30: Tape Runs Out debut single Friends/Flowers (Ear to Ear Records)|
"Spectral, shoegazey, magical" - Fierce Panda
"Folk-pop songs that quietly get under your skin - Gold Flake Paint
"A polished mature sound, rife with hooks, addictive vocals, innocence and optimism" - The Record Stache
"Cleverly crafted melodies, melancholic ambience and dreamy reverb-tinged rhythms" - Primal Music Blog
"Perfect intro to new and unseen places in the sonic universe!" - Producer Marc Joy (Mike Peters, Golden Fable, Bernard Butler)
FOR FANS OF: Yuck, The Radio Dept., Alvvays, Mogwai, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Tape Runs Out unashamedly display their edgy, refreshing pop-mindedness in these two tracks, with a potent elixir of guitars, hooks and the familiar soft hush of early 90s male vocals. This release includes the hallmark Friends, a layered jangle anthem sure to inspire dreaming and gazing, and the stand-out track Flowers is reminiscent of Rock Action era Mogwai on ecstasy with a remarkable Cure-laced cool-down effect.
One of the most exciting bands to come out of Cambridge in recent times, Tape Runs Out have being enthralling audiences around England for the past two years. Although they have been variously described as indie, shoegaze, dream pop and electronica, but they certainly borrow elements from these genres, they have carved out their own sound by blending cleverly crafted melodies, melancholic ambience and dreamy reverb-tinged rhythms Headed by Liam Goodrum-Bell, Tape Runs Out's music is infectious with a modern and unique twist, bucking stereotypical trends with songs to be savored by those who like to 'feel' and absorb the music, as well as the most intricate and scrupulous music lovers.
This release comes out on Ear to Ear Records, which specialises in dream pop, shoegaze, and alt indie pop/rock. In the words of Creation Records co-founder Joe Foster, "Ear To Ear Records are a new Welsh/Canadian label in the spirit of Creation and 4AD and just as obsessed as that!" Founded in Wales in 2013, the label quickly expanded its reach to Europe/ North America by signing Ummagma and Sounds of Sputnik. Its international grasp became firmer with the release of the "Revolution - The Shoegaze Revival" compilation in February 2015, involving 30 bands from 16
TAPE RUNS OUT LINKS:
EAR TO EAR LINKS: