Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 – ‘Lawr Yn Y Ddinas Fawr’

With so much of our lives put on hold as we navigate our way through the pandemic, it was with great joy we discovered that Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 fast-tracked their second album ‘Mas’ for release in 2021 instead of 2022. 

‘Mas’ is the follow-up to 2019’s stunning debut ‘Joia!’ and is out today via Banana & Louie Records. As with its predecessor, it consists of songs in Welsh, backed with a distinct pop flavoured with music from across Latin America; a beautiful melting pot fabulously informed by tropicália and bossa nova, but with a psychedelic flavour. Accompanying the album’s release is ‘Lawr Yn Y Ddinas Fawr’; a suitably breezy breathe of fresh air underpinned by a soft patter of drums and gentle bassline bubble. It is sweet, charming and joy filled, as sweet vocals cruise gracefully above a lush strum, warm chimes  and array of sunny tones, beautiful breezy feelgood vibe. Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 sounding wonderful once again; resplendent psych-pop perfection and perfect soundtrack to brighter times ahead. 

Listen to ‘Lawr Yn Y Ddinas Fawr’ below and the new album ‘Mas’ is out today – tune in here.

San Salvo – ‘Khanta’

San Salvo are a neo soul / psych outfit from Brooklyn; a collaborative project of Jared Schapker (Grandpa Jack), Matt C. White and Sean Smith (Rubblebucket / Kaleta & Super Yamba Band).

Together the trio have carved out a rather special place on the musical landscape with timeless psych-infused soul and funk, anchored and propelled by an enviable love of groove. Their new EP ‘Rarities’ is a colourful and imaginative exploration in sound, with a focus on mood and groove, and single ‘Khanta’, provides a succinct distillation of their sonic adventures in four wonderful minutes. Composed of a grooving rhythm section, soaring hornlines, and fuzzed out guitar and psychedelic brush strokes ‘Khanta’, is a churning, winding groover bathed in a swirling haze of shimmering tones, psychedelic keys, and parps of rich brass. ‘Khanta’ is a thrilling and pulsating powerhouse of rhythmic fervour that is totally irresistible and will leave an indelible mark on your soul.

Listen to ‘Khanta’ below – and check out the EP ‘Rarities’ here too.

Moderate Rebels – ‘Perfect Grey Day’

Rotating around core members Kate Worthington (vocals), Susan Milanovich (drums), Emma Faulkner (vocals) and Morag Bruce (keys/synths), Moderate Rebels are anything but orthodox. 

The London based music collective will follow up their debut with not one but three albums this year on Moshi Moshi – the first of which is If You See Something That Doesn’t Look Right, coming on April 30.  

Ahead of the album’s release later in the year, Moderate Rebels have shared the wonderful lead single ‘Perfect Grey Day’. There are echoes of Phil Spector, Spiritualized, St Etienne, Flaming Lips, Mercury Rev, Super Furry Animals and Stereolab here, but stamped firmly with their own inimitable identity too. Fueled by driving rhythmic repetition, discordant guitar fuzz, jangle and twangs dance amid a swirl of hazy psychedelia and divine harmonies, as hushed dreamy vocals and lilting melodic hooks float above the bewitching waltzing groove. ‘Perfect Grey Day’ is dreamy and playful as it danders along with a lullaby-esque charm, delivering its hypnotic spell – utterly beautiful.

Listen to  ‘Perfect Grey Day’ below now – the album is out on April 30. 

Beige Banquet – ‘Cold Yoghurt’

Beige Banquet is the solo project of East London-based Tom Brierley who creates drum-machine-driven and self-produced outsider/weirdo/art punk.

Beginning life in early 2020, the project yielded a treasure trove of tracks written and produced in a dank East-London bedroom during the first part of last year in circumstances familiar to many musicians, Brierley switched focus from performing to recording, and the fruit from that labour is debut album BETA.

Brierley offered a taste of what to expect with ‘Wired/Weird’ in December and second single from the album, ‘Cold Yoghurt’ is similarly spikey, agitated and drum-machine-driven post-punk. It is a frenzied jam fueled by metronomic, capping electro beat the underpins the repetitive guitar lines, jerky riffs and sharp rhythm section. This somewhat frenzied sound is perfectly complemented by the stream-of-consciousness lyrics and manic delivery, that seems to have tunnel vision and mirroring the coalescing of the sharp, angular noise that comes together slowly, fusing into a formidable intoxicating jam.

Listen to ‘Cold Yoghurt’ below – and I implore you to check out the new album BETA, 32 minutes of brilliant drum-machine-driven, frenzied guitar wielding mayhem. Stream it here, and it is out now on Just Step Sideways Records

Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 announce second album ‘Mas’; Share ‘Ar Ôl Y Glaw’

With so much of our lives put on hold as we navigate our way through the pandemic, it brings great joy to hear that Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 will release their second album ‘Mas’ in 2021.

Originally penned for release in 2022, the follow-up to 2019’s stunning debut ‘Joia!’ has been fast-tracked by a year and out on 26 February 2021 via Banana & Louie Records. As with its predecessor, ‘Mas’ will have songs sung in Welsh, backed with a distinct pop flavoured with music from across Latin America; a beautiful melting pot fabulously informed by tropicália and bossa nova, but with a psychedelic flavour. Ahead of the album’s release next month, we have been afforded a glimpse of what we can expect with lead single, ‘Ar Ôl Y Glaw’ (After The Rain). It is a joyous bundle of sunshine that tips along a bright strum, bubbling bass-led groove, array of sunny tones and beautiful breezy and feelgood vibes. It is sweet, charming, colourful and playful – an undeniable triumph; this is pure unadulterated psych-pop perfection. Carwyn Ellis & Rio 18 sounding fresh, new and alive, once again.

Listen to ‘Ar Ôl Y Glaw’ below:



Detective Larsson – ’21 (Dreamt of Freedom)’

’21 (Dreamt of Freedom)’ is the debut single from Welsh psych-rock outfit Detective Larsson.  

Based in the old mining village of Blaenrhondda in the Rhondda Valley, their debut blends shimmering post-punk, rumbling shoegaze, ’60s pop and frontier balladry into a compelling, raw and melancholic tale of love and loss. Evocative vocals float with a haunting air, while in the haze below, basslines rumble, guitars shimmer and jangle while riffs burn through the blanket of fuzz and distortion. Dreamy yet edgy, ethereal yet muscular, Detective Larsson make these competing and contradicting factors work, and how.

Listen to ’21 (Dreamt of Freedom)’ below now:

El Levtchenko – ‘After Hours’

We were introduced to Brazilian / American pairing El Levtchenko and their lush, sun-kissed and world encompassing sonic distillations throughout 2020 – offering beautiful and beguiling bouts of escapism as they did. 

El Levtchenko’s sound is magpie like, in the very best way possible, borrowing from a world of influences; there’s Cuban guitar music, a touch of hip hop, some Middle Eastern and African influences, funk and soul, and a whole lot of beautiful psychedelia. Their latest single ‘After Hours’ is – like previous singles ‘Hopeton Overton’ and ‘Sunday Social’ – a perfect exposition of their well honed style. It is an intoxicating brew, built on seductive grooves and cool, calm and chilled vibes, offering a zen-like state as it drifts along a funky, hypnotic groove as guitars chime and chords strut their languid wares amid the late night vibes. This is super chill, beautifully addictive and mellow, while oozing nocturnal vibes, it is a tune make the day better no matter the hour.

Check out the sunny delights of ‘After Hours’ below:


Fauna Twin – ‘Rudy’

It has been far too long since we’ve heard from Fauna Twin – the pairing of Parisian singer-songwriter Claire Jacquemard Ginsberg & Wales’ Owain Ginsberg (Hippies Vs Ghosts / We Are Animal) – who released their debut ‘The Hydra’ in 2016.

The good news is that toward the end of 2020, Fauna Twin returned with a wonderful new single called ‘Rudy’. It has an eerie and mysterious air to it as an insistent strum joins a meandering groove in taking us on a woozy waltz through hushed and haunting atmospheric textures that slowly swell, sending a shiver down the spine, while Jacquemard Ginsberg’s powerful vocals rise to soar above with stunning consequence. ‘Rudy’ is sublime, a chilling track that tenderly introducing itself before swelling and engulfing you completely. It is a magnificent evolution of what made their previous work so compelling.

Listen to ‘Rudy’ below and rumour has it, we should be seeing (or hearing rather) more from Fauna Twin in 2021.

Beige Banquet – ‘Wired/Weird’

Formed earlier in 2020, East London-based Beige Banquet (aka Tom Brierley) play drum-machine-driven and self-produced outsider/weirdo/art punk.

‘Wired/Weird’ is the first in a collection of tracks written and produced in a dank East-London bedroom during the first part of 2020 in circumstances familiar to many musicians, Brierley switched focus from performing to recording, and this is the first fruit from that labour. The aptly titled ‘Wired/Weird’ is spikey, agitated and drum-machine-driven post-punk. Fuelled by metronomic beat, repetitive guitar lines, jerky riffs and sharp rhythm section, making for an angular, intoxicating and off-kilter jam. This somewhat frenzied sounds perfectly complement the stream-of-consciousness lyrics and manic delivery – it is unique and brilliant with more promised in 2021.

Listen to ‘Wired/Weird’ below – it is out now on Just Step Sideways Records 

Total Rubbish – ‘Someone Else’s Dream’

Philadelphia trio, Total Rubbish, have garnered a serious rep for solid psychedelic garage rock gold throughout 2020 and culminating in debut EP, Triple Negative – a tour de force of psych-rock.

The trio are back with another single called ‘Someone Else’s Dream’. Lifted from the EP and much like the previous singles – ‘Honey Ryder’ & ‘What’s Your Damage?’ – it ekes out a sweet spot between forcefulness and ear for melody, coexisting in a sea of dense atmospheric tones and swirling riffs. ‘Someone Else’s Dream’ sees dreamy vocals float breezily above the buzzing riff, crunchy guitar, slo-mo swagger and rich melodic allure – and all bathed it a thick layer of fuzz and distortion. Yet again, the inappropriately named Total Rubbish have served up an irresistible slice of dreamy yet swaggering psych-infused rock.

Tune in to ‘Someone Else’s Dream’ below now: