Sunday, 30 October 2011

SACRED ANIMALS













Hold tight, because of me being shit, this Q&A is a bit dated, so try and pretend it's May...wow I can't believe Sean Kingston crashed that jet-ski, can you? I introduce Sacred Animals, fronted by the immensely talented Darragh Nolan, whose emotive tones lull and croon and are simply gorgeous. I'll let the music do the talking because I'll just be bombarding you with superlatives as usual, but remember the name Sacred Animals, stunning. Sacred Animals collaboration with Ownesie, 'Cat and Mouse' was released October 24th and you can listen after you've read about the band, or whilst reading, go wild.

First off, where are you in the world right now and what're you working on?

I'm at home in Gorey, which is in the South East of Ireland. I'm in my little bedroom studio place working on some new tunes...

Could you give a brief Sacred Animals history?

I've been in a couple of bands before, the one prior to this was a 4 piece indie guitar band & I got to a point in the end where I just wanted to do something a bit different, regroup so to speak on my own & see what happens, with little or no pressure. The tendency when you write with a group of others is to all start playing at the same time to work out parts but sometimes in that process the songs get a little lost & I wanted to try building from the song up as opposed to anything I had been used to prior to Sacred Animals. I wrote a few tunes that would become the 'Welcome Home' EP while figuring out the sound using the instruments I had available, guitar, rhodes, drums.... I knew I wanted it to be semi-electronic but organic, giving the songs room to breathe, arrangement-wise. The name came around that time too... jumped out of the music.

Who did you grow up listening to?

The first thing I discovered in my dad's musical collection that had any impact was a Beatles compilation that had 'I Am The Walrus' on it. Listening to that on vinyl pumped up real loud with those crunchy drums, that driving electric piano, the almost nonsensical lyrics & the general weirdness that oozed from it was pretty much the first time I heard anything that was outside the box musically. It really opened my ears so to speak. There was also a lot of country records in the collection but Johnny Cash was a part of that so that was cool too..

Tell us a bit about recent offering 'Welcome Home'.

It was pretty much what came out of the whole finding my feet thing at the beginning, figuring out as I go. I still am I guess, maybe you always are... Chosen Seed was recorded first & kinda defined what came after it a bit. Welcome Home, the track came last but lyrically seemed to encapsulate the vibe of the EP so became the title of the EP. I prefer not to explain what songs are about in general for a few reasons. I think it can limit the listening experience if you have a stone image in you head of where the song is coming from, but if it's left a little open it can click at some point, maybe after years of listening & become something more powerful as it resonates with the listener. I think it's way more important for the music to move the listener than for the writer to put his or her cards on the table...

Having said that the term 'Welcome Home' is about finally finding your feet.

What's the weirdest thing you've ever written a song about?

Oh god, that's a tough one. I can only really write from emotional experience so every lyric has a base deep within, whether I realise it or not when writing. I'll always know when a song is shaping itself what it's about because the subconscious or whatever it is that is writing through you usually knows. Your conscious mind hasn't a clue, it's just the steering wheel. I guess the songs that I don't remember fondly because of their lyrical content are ones where I write from an angry place, giving out about someone through song. It's not good to be remembering anger. So the weirdest would be me giving out shit about someone in song. Delightful, & probably not that weird.

Are there any specific themes or sources of inspiration you find yourself revisiting often when making music?

That's a good question because you'd imagine with only one mind & your seemingly cyclical thoughts to go on you'd end up writing a load of songs about the same things. Turns out I don't, or haven't anyway... Maybe because you're in a completely different place (metaphorically) every time you write a song that the perspective you have on any situation is different each time. I have wondered about this myself before though, I often wondered when I'd start repeating myself. It' hasn't happened yet though.

What would you say was the perfect environment or situation to listen to your music in?

I don't listen to my own music so it's hard to know in all honesty. I listen to my favourite albums in the car, it tends to be my little sanctuary where I'm alone with my thoughts. If it's a good album it'll sound good in a car. I mean in a dreamworld where you could have anything you wanted the perfect & most romantic environment would be a large room with high ceilings, wooden floors, a record player & some really nice speakers. Somewhere you could lie on the ground & pore over the details of the album cover inside & out on a giant cosy rug, lie down, close your eyes & immerse yourself in the sound.

Where would you love to tour?

I think the US & Canada have the most appeal for me tour-wise. I think musically I have more in common with what's going on over there, or maybe I just tend to listen to more of what you guys produce. We have been over for one short tour already in March but look forward to coming back & meeting more people, playing with more amazing bands & hanging out..

Finally, what's next for Sacred Animals, future plans and such?

We're looking at doing a single or a split 7" pretty soon & then going for an album, which might take a little while to complete. It's all up in the air at the moment, which is the exciting part, never really sure where the next week will take you. Nice places hopefully...

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Sacred Animals VS Owensie // Cat & Mouse from Feel Good Lost on Vimeo.

Monday, 24 October 2011

LUSHLIFE



















Download the amazingly delicious Lushlife album from the bandcamp. This has genuinely made my day considerably better.


Thursday, 20 October 2011

COLLEGE















I've just witnessed the cinematic perfection that is, Drive. It really was something special and hey Ryan Gosling, you will be mine. Think I need to sit, alone in a darkened room, with a stiff vodka to get over some of the more grizzly bits, but maybe I should just man up..Ryan won't be impressed. The film had a sublime soundtrack and this was the standout by College.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

UNDERWATER SEACREATURES




















Rich, soothing and full of depth (deep water, GET IT? ). Underwater Seacreatures have perfected the vintage 80s sound that reverberates within glo-fi, lo-fi, toe-fi, crow-fi, whatever you want to call it, so much at the moment. Their latest e.p is a dexterous, seductive effort, that is consistently strong throughout. They're perfect to put on in the background, but you'll find their hypnotic tones floating into your forefront regardless. A top album, can't wait to hear more.

First off, where are you in the world right now and what're you working on?

Us: Us is currently in the U.S. right now. Nathan, Marcos and Beans are in Richmond, Virginia attending Virginia Commonwealth University. We are all working on finishing Women, our first official album, and a couple miscellaneous tracks and remixes in between releases to reward fan loyalty as we gain a larger following. We really are very grateful for the response that we’ve had on the Internet in such a short time. It seems that a lot of people like what we do when they’re exposed to it, so we’ve been working on ways we can simply expose more people to our music, like re-edits of old movies or small-budget videos. At the moment our edit of the cult-classic Blade Runner to our song Shudder To Think has garnered the most attention out of our songs on YouTube. However, that was our first foray into video/editing and hardly our most popular song overall. It really just goes to show music + video is more viral a forum. We hope to continue making videos and to distinguish ourselves in time through the juxtaposition of our visual ideas and music.

Could you give a brief Underwater Seacreatures history?

Us: We met through a mutual friend in Richmond while attending Virginia Commonwealth University. At the time we were both making music so we connected in that aspect. We began jamming frequently, making mainly hip hop but sometimes playing guitar and saxophone along to our productions just for fun. In the summer of ‘09 we were introduced to chillwave/glo-fi which, as soon as we heard, we both knew we wanted to transition to. It just seemed to fit so much more, and so Us began.

Who did you grow up listening to?

Nathan Keeys: At the age of 3 I heard raffi….changed my life forever. LOL jk I grew up listening to a lot of my parent’s music as a kid: Stevie wonder, MJ, Pointer Sisters, Sade. Moving into high school I was big into The Neptunes/N.E.R.D and that whole Virginia Beach movement.

Marcos Da Silva: At the age of 5 I heard Jordy, back in Venezuela... and he really did change my life forever haha! Seriously he was a sensation over there, "Dur dur d'être bébé" was insanely popular as I was growing up, and he was my age, like five years old. You should google him if you’re curious. I still have that red cassette, and sometimes listen to it, despite still not understanding it. Music wasn’t always about understanding the lyrics to me, of course I was into all sorts of popular spanish artists at the time, but I wouldn’t have had an interest in American recording artists if a lyrical understanding was what struck me first about music. It’s actually pretty funny now in hindsight, grown-ass Venezuelans singing along to like...Aqua’s “Barbie Girl” both truly enjoying themselves and truly having no idea just what the hell they were saying whatsoever. I guess you could say I was most influenced by a personal fascination with pop music at large, worldwide, and some of my parent’s gems like Mecano, Illan Chester, Ricardo Arjona, Oscar De Leon, Franco De Vita, Ricardo Montaner, Karina, Kiara, and others in that vein.

Tell us a bit about the most recent song you've written.

Nathan Keeys: We've just finished a song that will be dropping before the album along side an autumn-esque music video. The song is simply called So Shy. There’s a constant dilemma where there are two girls who are just as attractive but one always gets more of the attention because shes more umm ..aggressive. Personally, I’ve always been genuinely attracted to those modest girls. In saying that, the song is my thoughts on that “shy” girl.

What's the strangest subject you've ever written a song about?

Nathan Keeys: Our subjects are pretty much feelings and events in our life. For the most part they’re normal happenings…but at times can be weird as shit. I’d say the strangest subject I’ve written about was “nothing”. Describing nothing is a task but I was doing nothing at the time so…I felt it. lol

Marcos Da Silva: I think every subject we write about is pretty strange honestly. In my opinion, I think it’s kind of a strange thing in the first place to sort of translate emotion into music. People usually are used to music making them feel a certain way, but trying to imbue your emotions onto something that doesn’t exist, out of thin air is particularly mystical to me. I’m always sort of surprised when it happens and is accurate. Particularly, with the more complex emotions that we experience. Even when they’re common. Things like, uncertainty, regret, nostalgia, lost innocence, the transition into adulthood, coming home after college, they’re things that most of us, if not all of us, experience and are thus universal, but the part where you communicate what that feels like to you, specifically and accurately, so that others recognize it and feel it too in themselves? I think that process is sort of magical and strange, because its more individual and private than anything else.

What would you say was the perfect environment or situation to listen to your music in?

Nathan Keeys: Waking up to a song you love is pretty nice.

Marcos Da Silva: Stoned. Definitely stoned. The EP anyway, it’s very placid, it sort of lends itself to that. It’s like a lazy summer’s day/night in its entirety.

What other artists are you into at the moment?

Nathan Keeys: Toro y moi and Neon Indians new albums are genius. I just heard Twin Sister’s album In Heaven and I love the stereolab feel…and Andrea Estellas voice lol.

Marcos Da Silva: I definitely agree, also the new m83 is pretty epic, the new Cool Kids is awesome, I’ve recently been craving a lot of Tribe Called Quest randomly, our friend Modern Humanist is doing some great work and coming up with a remix of “Speak Up” which should definitely turn some heads, and honestly almost every.time. we get fucked up we listen to Watch The Throne... that shit cray.

Where would you love to tour?

Nathan Keeys: So many places..Japan is a definite tho.

Marcos Da Silva: Yea seriously, where wouldn’t we love to tour. I’ve always been particularly curious about France. Their electronic music scene has always seemed one step ahead of everyone else, it makes me wonder if this is a cultural phenomenon. I’ve also always been curious about Portugal, because my Venezuelan family is actually originally from the island of Madeira.

Finally, what's next for you, future plans and such?

Us: At this time we’re finishing up the upcoming album Women and perfecting our live performing. We’re also planning on coming out with a few music videos so keep an eye out. =]

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CHILDISH GAMBINO
















Tuesday, 11 October 2011

CIVIL CIVIC




















You may recall (you won't) all the way back in May last year, I featured a band for the first time. Civil Civic have gone from strength to strength and with the release of their new album, I proposed a catch-up with a metaphorical cup of tea and maybe a biscuit too. Their music can set your pulse into 'overdrive', so if you're elderly, you've had your warning and the anthemic nature of their music makes mundane tasks, such as listening whilst driving your car feel like you're in a police chase or something. The album 'Rules' has been released today, grab it, get it, gain it.

What's going on for you at the moment in terms of projects and where are you in the world?
Right now we're getting ready to hit the road and make noise at people, because we are about to release our debut album, which is destined to become a timeless classic which will be cherished by music lovers for generations. The first single has already been chosen as the official anthem for the 2012 Olympic Games!

How has your summer been? Any standout gigs or festival sets?
Summer was "radical" and "gnarly". Some of our gigs in France were truly historic. Evreux, Bordeaux, Limoges...they all kicked in their own individual ways.
Our set at the Indie Rocket festival in Italy was pretty memorable too. You can read about it here.

Tell us a bit about recent track, 'Street Trap'
It's fast and riffy and has a cool explode-o chorus. It was written for us by the famous Nashville song-smith Roger Murah, who has written ten U.S number 1 hits, including "It Takes a Little Rain" by The Oak Ridge Boys.

Who are you listening to and enjoying at the moment?
The Oak Ridge Boys are at the top of the playlist right now.

And finally, what's next, what does the near future hold?
We're trying to figure that out now. Making a couple of videos and possibly working on new material are two of the things on the agenda, but personally I'll just be grateful to survive this tour.


Monday, 10 October 2011

REAL ESTATE






















So Real Estate's new album is out 17th October, which enthralls me and I thought I'd post up this The Strokes (they would so be called 'Strokes' if they formed now) cover that they did back in July. Oh and read a past Q&A with them if you want.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

ALECKS AUCLAIR


Alecks Auclair hails from California, but his tracks are far from sunny. His sound is heavy, accompanied by intricate, delicate melodies throughout, creating cloudy layers with neat production. They're pensive songs, that possess an other worldly quality, making you want to pull a few shapes but simultaneously lulls you with a sedative bite. A really talented artist, the outlook is bright.

Could you give a brief Alecks Auclair history?

Born and raised in California, i started making beats and loops, mainly ambient trance like stuff around 2007 when i wasnt jamming with bands, i was making stuff under the moniker YOTO. i actually released a ep back then but i dont think anyone really heard it lol. the area i was in was mainly driven towards metal and indie stuff so it was hard for me to get out there for a bit.
around 2009 i started really focusing on things, 2010 moved to los angeles. and that really affected my outlook on electronic music, i actually saw that there was a huge demographic of people that were into this stuff as much as i was ha! it was a real trip, got me motivated.

Who did you grow up listening to?

i heard so much growing up from my parents, lot of 80s LA Punk stuff, and 80s rock, nina hagen, erykah badu, the rat pack, a ton of psychedellic/folk music from the 70s. I remember specifically loving alot of the rap of that time, Young Mc, Biz Markie, Beastie Boys, and of course michael jackson. i played "bad" everyday almost everyday. the come to daddy video for aphex twin also blew my little mind. Nirvana was definitly my favorite band when i was a kid, as a teenager i was really into hardcore and post hardcore, i think it was my junior year i discovered aphex twin again and just fell in love with idm and ambient music.

Tell us a bit about the most recent song you've written.

i actually seem to write best in threes. but the one i just recently worked on had a susumu hirasawa sample from the paranoia agent soundtrack, ive been really into anime soundtracks lately. its a kind of traveling track, perfect for driving montages. every song i do, i learn something new, i make a point to do that, i want the listener to grow up with me, as cheesy as that sounds.

What's the strangest subject you've ever written a song about?

i was in this experimental hardcore band "Of Forty Thieves" and we had a song called red sonja, that was about a prostitute that frequented the pizza place we worked at. her name was sonja and she was really gnarly, so we named it after the female counterpart of conan the barbarian, seemed appropiate. Besides that, probably this awesome song about dominoes me and my friend roxy wrote, its about dominoes and masturbation, dont ask. hah


What would you say was the perfect environment or situation to listen to your music in?

Anything Late at night, intimate talks bout very unintimate things, Tapping into the greater consciousness and bike rides.


What other artists are you into at the moment?

Lapalux is killing it right now, Kastle, Aker, Susumu hirasawa, Millions, The Notwist, and The cars.


Where would you love to tour?

Northeast, canada and new england, that would be too cool for words. that or the uk! i just really wanna get out there, which should be soon, i may end up getting on sxsw, which would be a great way to kick this off. but i need management!

Finally, what's next for you, future plans and such?

at the moment im workin on this ep/beat tape to share with the world and possibly gonna get onto the sxsw lineup, if not im still gonna tour the greater west coast next year. the ep is due out 11/11/11, and after that ill be focusing on the live set. Until then, its back to the headphones! thanks for talking with me, and stay rad!

Keep your eyes peeled for the release of Alecks Auclair new e.p, set to drop 11/11/11. You can listen to more at the BANDCAMP SOUNDCLOUD FACEBOOK TWITTER



Friday, 7 October 2011

GIRAFFAGE























Absolutely lusssssshhhhhhhhh. I'm not Welsh and can't get away with saying that word, but it's appropriate.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

GLITTER BONES / TWIN SISTER












Slick reworking of Twin Sister's latest single, grab it from the Glitter Bones Bandcamp.