Martha Ffion – ‘Take Your Name’

hsdgfdfgffdgdasdfd

Irish-born, Glasgow-based singer-songwriter, Martha Ffion has announced she will releasing her long-awaited debut LP Sunday Best on March 9, via excellent Welsh indie-label Turnstile Music.

Previewing the forthcoming record. Ffion released ‘We Make Do’ in December of last year and has followed it with the similarly wonderful ‘Take Your Name’. It is two-and-a-half minutes of gleaming guitar-pop that drifts between soft-centered balladry, lush instrumentation and something altogether more cutting and purposeful. As ever, Martha Ffion’s detailed lyrical vision to life flourishes with her beautiful honeyed vocals, hovering gently above and adding another layer of glowing allure. A beautifully crafted a wonderful and compelling indie-pop gem, ‘Take Your Name’ has a touch of Tennis-esque exquisiteness in the swooning sixties inspired indie-pop stakes – utterly infectious and utterly irresistible.

Watch the video for ‘Take Your Name’ below and keep your eyes peeled for Sunday Best, its out on March 9.

whenyoung – ‘Pretty Pure’

27067415_1646462958733131_8056636452582887537_n

London-based Irish trio, whenyoung – Aoife Power (Vocals/Bass), Niall Burns (Guitar) and Andrew Flood (Drums) – have kicked off 2018 with some style, sharing brand spanking new single, ‘Pretty Pure’.

Following on from their brilliant opening releases ‘See How They Run’ & ‘Actor’, ‘Pretty Pure’ is the very definition of an indie delight. An irresistible and infectious four-minutes of pristine melodic jangle-pop with a punky-edge and hooks that you could hang your hat on. Powers’ vocals meanwhile, are the pièce de résistance, sweet, yet punchy vocals bristling defiance leaving you utterly powerless to resist the allure of ‘Pretty Pure’. In short, ‘Pretty Pure’ is equipped with everything that has made whenyoung a standout this far.

Jump below to listen to ‘Pretty Pure’ – which out now.

They’ve a pile of live dates across the UK & Ireland coming up, check ’em here.

JOHNNY FEENEY’S ALBUMS OF 2017

albums of 2017

Aside from compiling my own end of year lists, I really do enjoy checking out other people’s take on the past 12 months and none more so than Mr. Johnny Feeney.

A reliably insightful musical sage, Johnny’s guest appearances are always interesting and add an extra flavour to the blog and I look forward to reading – of which, surely I’m not alone?

A massive thanks to Johnny for taking time out to compile this list, and on that note, I’ll leave you with his Mr. Feeney’s favourite records of 2017.

10. Grandaddy – Last Place

Previously split up in 2006, Grandaddy’s first album in eleven years saw the ever-eccentric, cult Californians return with a bang with their trademark, electronica-tinged alt-rock. The familiar sounds of Jason Lytle’s distinctive, melancholic vocals, chugging guitars and synth flourishes are all present and correct on a wonderful comeback album that was well worth the wait.

09. Fangclub – Fangclub

Dublin rockers, Fangclub, have been tearing up stages around the country and further afield for a while now and, thankfully, their self-titled debut album delivers on the promise of their raucous live shows. In a classic guitar/bass/drums set up, the trio display a keen ear for an infectious hook and make a thunderous racket not dissimilar to Nirvana. If you like it loud then look no further.

08. Wolf Alice – Visions Of A Life

The London four-piece’s sophomore album sees a fine follow up to 2015’s commercially successful, Mercury-nominated My Love Is Cool. The adaptability of vocalist Elise Rowell means the group are equally comfortable on the melodic, anthemic indie-rock side of things (‘Beautifully Unconventional’) as they are on the heavier material (‘Yuk Foo’) and anything in between. It’s this broad range that makes Wolf Alice such an interesting proposition.

Continue reading

BarryGruff’s Albums of the Year 2017

Albums of the year 2017 graphics

Yes, it’s that time of year again, lists, lists and well, more lists – and from every angle possible. That said, compiling an annual list of my favourite records from throughout the year is one of the most enjoyable aspects to the blog.

There was lots of great music in 2017 (as with every year) but here are my 20 favourite records from the year. Also, I’m hoping the festive period will provide time to catch up on some records I’ve missed throughout the year, so feel free to recommend some listening material.

Without further ado, here are my favourite records from 2017:

20. Czarface – ‘First Weapon Drawn’

For album number four, Czarface (Esoteric, Inspectah Deck and 7L) teamed up with Marvel Comics to create a soundtrack to an actual hardcopy comic of the same name. The previous installments have featured rapping from Esoteric, Inspectah Deck and other guests, however, on this occasion it’s just the superbly evocative instrumentation, with narration tacked on throughout. In fact, 7L’s production is some of strongest found throughout all the releases. Not quite at the level of albums 1 – 3, it provides an excellent little stop gap while we await a new album proper.

[Stream on Spotify]

19. Nouveaunoise – ‘Nouveaunoise’

Galway duo Nouveaunoise – Conor Gaffney & Niall Conway – had earned themselves a rep for finely crafted electronic productions, intricately weaving crackling samples, jazz-sampling percussion and warm melodies and crisp beats a la Four Tet or Boards of Canada. The pair released their debut back in 2010 and their self-titled follow-up sees them continue to shine when it comes to elegant, lush and intricately produced pristine electronica. Eight years is a long time but it was worth the wait!

[Stream on Spotify]

18. The Courtneys – ‘The Courtneys II’

With their 2013 debut, The Courtneys peddled lo-fi fuzzy slacker garage-pop with the ’90s casting a pretty long shadow and for the follow-up, the Vancouver trio have repeated the trick. Endearingly ramshackle, the dreamy vocals and laid-back sunkissed vibes are pumped with fuzzed-up distorted guitars, sweet licks and heavy, driving bass lines. Rarely has ramshackle indie been so appealing and so pretty damn irresistible. This is the sound of long, hot summers.

[Stream on Spotify]

17. Girlpool – ‘Powerplant’

Girlpool’s sound gets bigger on their second LP, beefed up with addition of a drummer crafting that classic alt-rock loud-quiet-loudness throughout but Girlpool know where their true power lies: Cleo Tucker and Harmony Tividad’s voices still sit front and centre. The unsettling magic that exists between makes them Girlpool distinct, lending their patented fragility and vulnerability. Powerplant is sparse and explores the energy and shape of contrariety and emptiness.

[Stream on Spotify]

Continue reading

Martha Ffion Announces Debut LP; Shares ‘We Make Do’

000036-852x550

Irish-born, Glasgow-based singer-songwriter, Martha Ffion is set to release her debut LP Sunday Best early next year, through exceptional Welsh indie-label Turnstile Music.

Last we heard from Ffion was with wonderful debut EP, Trip about this time last year but she’s broken the silence with this album news which is accompanied by new, and lead single, ‘We Make Do’. It is a melodic piano-led pop song with a slight ’60s twist, as lush instrumentation combines with soft shakers, piano melodies and mellow acoustic guitars to create gentle surroundings for Ffion’s utterly compelling vocals; delivering detailed and uplifting lyrics. As ever, Martha Ffion beautifully crafted a wonderful, compelling and memorable song – delivered with aplomb. It is both familiar and warm; akin to being perched in front a glowing fire on the coldest of winter’s eves or an embrace from a cherished old friend.

You can listen to ‘We Make Do’ below – and keep an eye out for the LP in the new year – it promises to be a rather wonderful record.