It’s been a quiet start to the year in terms of album releases and the like, but there are a couple of things on the horizon about which I am most excited. Nervous too, in a sense, because these are bands of whom I am a long-time fan, and in one case a personal friend, and both things tend to give me a sort of enthusiasm anxiety – what if I’m too excited and then don’t like it, what happens then?
That’s dumb of course, but I think a lot of music fans feel that strange tinge of concern in case one of your favourite bands releases something you aren’t so into. The second Perfume Genius album, for example, left me feeling a little underwhelmed, and also somehow kind of sad because I loved the first album and it seemed such a shame to be so cool on the second. I assume I am not the only one who suffers from the odd kind of music fan idiocy.
The new Timber Timbre song (above) is even more sultry than his previous album, although without perhaps the same sense of eerie menace. The shuper shexshy lounge sax solo towards the end of the song is just mental though – not in that it’s horrible or sounds all that shocking, more that it actually doesn’t sound weird or shocking at all. This is popular music in 2014, how the fuck is there a cheesy-as-all-fuck sax solo in a pop song and yet that pop song still sounds ace? WHAT MANNER OF WITCHCRAFT IS THIS? After that, fuck knows what the album is going to sound like, but if it’s anything like as good as the above tune or the band’s previous records then it is going to be ace. Pre-order a copy from the excellent Full Time Hobby.
In the case of Broken Records I have three Toad Session tracks and now a new tune from their forthcoming EP which suggest that I am going to really enjoy it, so that seems safe. They’ve changed a lot since I first harassed them for a copy of anything they might have recorded after a T-Break Heats gig back in (I think) 2007 and Toska, the new tune they’ve just posted on their Soundcloud page (and which I sadly cannot embed here, so just click on the link) is much dreamier than anything I’ve heard from them before. The Toad Session was pretty raucous though, so I am guessing the whole album won’t be quite like this, but I like the way the song comes across as an unhurried lament without necessarily sounding like a ballad. You can pre-order the band’s new album from their PledgeMusic page here, should you so choose.
Micah P. Hinson has several brilliant albums in his past already, at least three of which are amongst my favourite albums ever*, so I assume he isn’t going to start magically sucking all of a sudden, and the new song On the Way Home to Abilene (below) suggests he is not. He doesn’t change much from one album to the next, honestly, but where in some artists I might find this boring, for some reason I can listen to him make this kind of music pretty much forever.
It’s out on a small French label called Talitres, rather than Full Time Hobby like his previous ones, and I know he’s been thinking of working with smaller labels for a while (and yes, I am kicking myself for not suggesting Song, by Toad Records) but I don’t really know too much about why. When I am chatting to musicians I tend to steer away from that kind of question a lot of the time, as it feels a bit like asking personal questions about why someone split up with their girlfriend. Sometimes people would rather just have a pint, honestly, and I don’t want people feeling they have to keep me at arm’s length in that ‘industry’ sense, if I can avoid it.
Anyhow, this tune sounds bloody lovely. Less aggressive and less lushly sad than some of his stuff perhaps, but the song itself and his mesmerising voice still retain all the old qualities. Pre order here.
*Admittedly, that’s quite a long list.