Bring Me the Head of Justin Bieber is the title track of an EP by The Bordellos, who describe their music as alternative indie pop noise from the north of England. Like a great deal of good recorded music these days, the record is available through the increasingly fantastic Bandcamp, guaranteeing that a fair wedge of your purchase price—in this case it’s pay-what-you-want—goes directly to the artist.
Justin Bieber, on the other hand, is a hugely talented Canadian singer and the Bordellos’ song is an expression of envy at the boy-man’s phenomenal contribution to 21st century culture. Or perhaps not.
I recently set a personal record for the longest time between buying a record and getting round to listening to it. This particular record was purchased in a San Francisco record store in March 2008 and consigned to the bottom of a suitcase, before standing, forgotten, amid ranks of closely stacked vinyl.
Featuring an unlikely collaboration between Australian instrumentalists Dirty Three and US masters-of-slow Low, In the FishTank 7 was, as the name suggests, the seventh record in a series of Fishtank sessions recorded by Konkurrent, a Benelux record distributor. Add a Neil Young song to that mix and something lovely was bound to happen.
Now that’s a search engine-friendly way to mark a return from this blog’s semi-enforced hiatus — work, life and travel are such inconvenient priorities — and what better way than this track from a veteran of these pages?
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ latest LP, Push the Sky Away, is a reassuring return to from for Australia’s greatest export, following 2004′s uninspiring though critically acclaimed Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus and the largely forgettable 2008 offering, Dig, Lazarus, Dig.
Japanese punk pop doesn’t come any better than the pandemonium unleashed by Toquiwa, a female foursome that had already released a series of albums in Japan when indie “legend” David Gedge saw them in Tokyo.
And so the man behind and indeed in front of the Wedding Present and Cinerama did, giving them a support slot on the Wedding Present’s last tour and signing them to his Scopitones label, whereupon they released their self-titled UK debut.
Founded in 2008, Eardrums Pop has been one of the most consistently reliable record labels of the past five years, releasing a string of singles and compilations that would enrich anyone’s iTunes. Each release is free and includes artwork that should make many a commercial label squirm with embarrassment.
Take ePop028, the debut release by Sleeping Policemen, a five-piece from Hamburg who make music that, were it visible to the naked eye, would look like ice cream (see the aforementioned artwork).
We’ve had snow on the ground for a fortnight now and but with the freezing weather due to abate this weekend, this may be a last chance to post some seasonal tunes on the theme of brass monkeys.
Snow has already been done, so we’ll stick to the kind of songs that conjure up thoughts of two pairs of socks, firewood and glühwein, starting with a one-man band from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Put away visions of banjos, harmonicas and foot-pedalled bass drums. Brian Hancheck, aka The Arctic Flow, is an altogether more sophisticated blend of dreamy shoegaze and indie pop. This track is from a new EP, which is only available on CD—what is this, 1998?—though it can be streamed from his Bandcamp page.
Work, a house, a garden and the attractions of a great European city mean that as far as music is concerned I’m forever playing catch-up. My Sisyphean list of bands and records to be checked out stretches back at least three years and shows no sign of shortening.
Such is the backlog that even by restricting myself to music released since the start of last year, I generally post tracks that first saw the light of day several months ago. In that vein, let’s start with a release from July, Safranin Sounds, a collection of early material by Ceremony, the usual mix of classy references and toe-tapping, radio-friendly shoegaze. Well the references, at least.
A new year, the same old lackadaisical approach to blogging: if you’ve come here looking for an end-of-year list of best albums or some such thing, leave disappointed. I’ll leave such comprehensiveness to others while completely ignoring the turn of the calendar to bring you a song from 2012.
This is latest release from Deaf Club and the second mention on this blog for a band about whom I know very little, save that they keep making fantastic records. Let’s hope they’ve resolved to continue doing so.
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