Yes, the Sousedcast, mostly because I am fucking steaming.
Getting shitfaced and swearing at the internet about music may sound irretrievably sad, but it is one of the great pleasures in my life. Seriously, listen to this shit, is it not completely brilliant? I don’t listen to my own podcasts again and again – that would be a bit like wanking with a fistful of your own toothpaste – but I listen to the playlists for these things all the time, because even if my chat is shit, the playlists to our podcasts are brilliant. They really are, aren’t they.
Anyhow, Mrs. Toad is away at the moment, which is why I am getting shitfaced and shouting at you on the internet. IN ALL CAPS! But this week we have the best possible balance between hipster pop shit and genuinely weird bollocks. Go weirdos! GO!
01. Le Thug – Swam (00.26)
02. Temples – Colours to Life (11.12)
03. Big Deal – Dream Machines (15.24)
04. Wooden Wand – No Bed For Beatle Wand/Days This Long (23.26)
05. Magic Arm – Is History (37.12)
06. The Yawns – Butterfleyes (41.23)
07. Ed Harcourt – The Pretty Girls (44.46)
08. Glass Animals – Cocoa Hooves Pt.1 (47.57)
09. Teardrop Factory – Vanity Unfair (56.36)
10. Mac DeMarco – She’s Really All I Need (1.03.49)
Hello again from Brighton. Ian and I are down at the Great Escape again this year, and will be joined later in the week by Mrs. Toad.
I like The Great Escape. Brighton is an awesome place to be, which is important if you’re going to try and lure Mrs. Toad to a music festival.
In some ways I prefer it to SXSW, because they don’t really focus on big-name headliners here, meaning that it really is all about new music and up and coming bands. At least, that makes it more fun for me personally, anyway, because that’s generally the kind of bands I am excited to see.
Anyhow, this year The Hype Machine asked me for five picks of bands to see at the Great Escape this year, and I thought I would pass them on before the chaos begins…
Glass Animals – I don’t like to play the ‘heard it here first’ card, but I genuinely wrote about these guys miles before pretty much anyone else. Not sure what else to call this, apart from muffled disco.
Temples – A touch of one-song syndrome here. Shelter Song was absolutely brilliant, but I am not so sure about their new tune (below). Time to go and see them live and find out for sure, I think.
Eagulls – Ian and I saw them on the end of Brighton pier last year and they were brilliant. Epic, nasty guitar rock and a lead singer who prowls the stage like he’s looking for a fight.
Lab Coast – These guys are eminently hipster-friendly, as you might guess from noting that they are signed to the effortlessly cool Faux Discx. It’s stylish, laid back, lo-fi guitar music, and very good it is too.
Mac DeMarco – This stuff is rather stylish too, but in a very different way to Lab Coast. Mac DeMarco also play hipster guitar music, but in more of a lounge-style, laid back, ‘I will have sex with your daughter’ kind of a way.
And just because the last two were rather unimaginative – you know full well already that I like these two bands, after all – here’s a band whose manager got in touch with me when I registered, to promote the band. Generally I sniff at that – not for any good reason of course, it’s just a rather dumb reflex – but this lot actually sound rather good, and I think I will go and see them. Meet Keebo:
So, Record Store Day is over, the subsequent hangover dispatched, a tedious day of sitting around waiting to find out about jury service has been put to bed. I’ve been out to Bathgate in order to be fucking terrible at football, returned to Edinburgh to watch United claim their 20th title, and now here I sit at my computer wondering what the rest of the week holds for me. Boundless excitement, I am pretty sure. Actually, after last week’s Beer vs. Records (bored of that yet?) and the forthcoming Sparrow and the Workshop album launch shows, there is still a very heavy Song, by Toad Records flavour to this week’s best gigs.
On Thursday Rob St. John and various collaborators will be at the Scottish Storytelling Center with his Folklore Tapes collaborators. As well as live performances by himself, Ian Humberstone and Malcolm Benzie and David Chatton Barker – the man behind Folklore Tapes, as I understand it – there will be visuals by Barker himself, and a talk on the traditions and practice of folk song by Tom Western, another member of Rob’s band.
The following night Meursault play a more straightforward bill at the Liquid Rooms on Victoria Street, alongside pals Withered Hand and the new look FOUND. As ever, Meursault are already evolving away from the sound of their last album, but that’s pretty much par for the course with these guys, which is a large part of what makes them such an interesting band to work with. FOUND too will be evolving since the departure of bass player Tommy Perman, but apparently their last few shows have been, and I use this word under advisement. ‘bangin’. Honestly, that’s what people said.
There are a also a couple of really interesting-looking gigs which might pass you by, but which I think are very much worth attending, should you be at a loose end. One might be a challenge, as King Charles at The Electric Circus, but hey, if you reckon you can swing a guestie you might as well give it a go. Other than that, however, we have the potentially awesome Temples at Sneaky Pete’s on Thursday, co-headlining with Drenge. Honestly, I can take or leave the latter, and the former have only one single song knocking around the internet at the moment, so it’s hard to say anything with any real confidence about them just yet. Apart from this: that one song is an absolute fucking belter. It is classic late 60s psychedelia, but when you can pen tunes this catchy it really doesn’t matter if you’re all that original in your sound or not. I really am curious to see what else these guys have in their locker however, and it’s nice to see Sneaky’s back on the live music calendar, after they’ve had to gamely battle through yet more sound-proofing hassle.
Et Tu Brute??? may be a little oddly named, but their pedigree is nevertheless just fine. The are Grant from Edinburgh School For the Deaf and Dan Mutch from The Leg, and their new stuff sound, umm, a tad challenging but nevertheless pretty bloody good. The band are playing at Henry’s Cellar Bar on Saturday, just before the welcome return of Papi Falso later that same night. And that’s after you’ve presumably come round to our house to help collect for the RNLI earlier in the day, which of course you’re all doing, aren’t you. Aren’t you?
And finally, also on Saturday 27th Pendulum Man Concerts present their last show in a while, with Fieldhead (Gizeh Records), A-Sun Amissa (Gizeh Records) and Now Wakes The Sea (Wiseblood Industries) at the Banshee Labyrinth at 8pm. Advance tickets are a fiver with an exclusive 3-track download EP at http://www.pendulummanconcerts.com
Winter has been slow to arrive this year, but it certainly feels like it’s here now. The last few days have been pretty cold, but more importantly when you live this far North, it’s getting fucking dark. It’s not something I dislike, actually. We may not get much real cold in Edinburgh, nor indeed very much which anyone else would describe as Summer, but Edinburgh is at a surprisingly high latitude and during the Winter months it really is dark around these parts.
So there I was sitting at my desk at four in the afternoon and it was already really rather fucking dingy outside, and in the absence of an obvious theme it seemed about as relevant as anything else I could have come up with. And let’s face it, without that this is just a mish mash of new stuff which has been piling into my inbox over the last little while, and where’s the fun in that, eh? Well? Where?
Two songs on one 7″ single does not a great band, but I reckon these tunes, by really quite new Kettering band Temples, are easily good enough to start bandying terms like ‘highly promising’ and ‘great potential’ and, even more excitingly, ‘watch this space’ about the place.
And fuck it, why not, these two tunes are cracking. The only problem is that they tend to lead me into conversations which almost invariably involve people saying things like ‘psyche-rock is back’ (hooray) and ‘just look at Tame Impala’ (boo – they really are fucking shit).
Having just started to explore the awesome Nuggets compilation (I know, where the fuck have I been, etc..) and started to pick out all sorts of fascinating vinyl retrospective compilations, like the brilliant Michigan Meltdown which I found in Action Records in Preston, as well as getting hold of recent reissues by The Zombies and Thirteenth Floor Elevators in Voxbox round the corner… it turns out I really, really like psychedelic rock.
And is it back? I don’t know, but Toy seemed to have a fair bit of psyche mixed in with their Britpop, and bands like The Murals are doing pretty well, and Lil Daggers and The Underground Youth are pretty psyche – and they just released an awesome split 7″ on none other than the *cough cough* incredible Song, by Toad Records!
So, whatever, you’ve all heard my caveats about not being able to tell too much about a band from two songs plenty of times before, but without getting too carried away, I think this is pretty awesome actually and I am rather looking forward to hearing more. And I am definitely getting hold of a copy of the 7″ at the Independent Label Market this weekend.