Introducing: DRINKS (Cate Le Bon & White Fence’s Tim Presley)

drinks_lj_190515.jpg.pagespeed.ce.LqYHV3ur2a

Welsh songstress Cate Le Bon is joining forces with White Fence‘s Tim Presley for DRINKS, a new collaborative project. Despite their synergistic efforts, they describe themselves “as solo project, not a collaboration. It has one mouth, one set of lungs, one mind and four legs.”

Moving swiftly away from the pedantry, the duo’s debut album Hermits on Holiday, will be released on August 21st via Heavenly Records. Ahead of the LP’s release, which is not too far away at all, we’ve got a a veritable pair of aces in ‘Hermits On Holiday’ & ‘Laying Down Rock’. Title track, ‘Hermits On Holiday’ is a peculiar (and incredibly catchy), jaunty affair with a jittery, tick-tock rhythm and led by Le Bon’s distinctly soft, supple vocals, before a mash of ragged riffs rise up, and rip it up, to see out the song with chaotic majesty. Meanwhile, Presley handles vocals on ‘Laying Down Rock’, a purposefully graceless, jerky piece of ’60s-leaning-psychedelia, driven by some tremendous riff repetition.

Who looks the majority of vocal responsibility on the album? Guess we’ll have to wait and see, but both are equally affable, no doubt about it. It is a promising start to an interesting partnership and you can hear both tracks below.

 

Sleaford Mods – ‘Tarantula Deadly Cargo’

600x397xsleaford_mods_lj_290615.jpg.pagespeed.ic.et8dH9WedM

Nottingham duo Sleaford Mods release their new album Key Markets, today, July 10th 24th via Harbinger Sound.

Jason Williamson and Andrew Fearn have already shared ‘Face To Faces’ & ‘No Ones Bothered’ with us, and now they’ve added another, with their new video for ‘Tarantula Deadly Cargo’. Inspired by a 1977 horror movie of the same name, it is a slightly different take on their usual sound. Mellow, by their standards, with a moody bassline that’ll get inside your head providing the backdrop for Williamson’s metaphorical take on the often bleak and feverish experiences of touring. Be it the sneering sarcasm and vitriolic anger, there is a brutal honesty and realness to everything Sleaford Mods do. The new record can’t arrive quick enough.

Check out the Simon Parfrement shot video for ‘Tarantula Deadly Cargo’ below.

Stealing Sheep – ‘Not Real’ (Gwenno Remix)

Gwenno Stealing Sheep

Liverpool trio Stealing Sheep – Becky Hawley, Emily Lansley and Lucy Mercer – released their second LP back in April. Slightly odd, peculiar but brilliant new record, it is one this year’s favorite records so far.

The trio’s sweet and heavenly voiced psych-pop, choral harmonies and quirky delivery is immersed in a colourful mix of electronics and leftfield ’80s pop, incorporating synthesizers and drum machines to their psych-folk tendencies, it is an admirable evolution of their sound. Equally meritorious is their label mate and former Pipettes front-woman, Gwenno‘s remix of the title track. Stealing Sheep‘s utterly contagious, infectiously off-kilter pop gem ‘Not Real’, is transformed into a blissed-out chugging, hypnotic electro-kraut-pop jam. An insistent, urgent backbeat gives shape to the more dreamy, ethereal tones and the echoing vocals flashes of psych moments only add to a most ear-catching, immersive and irresistible of tunes. Ruddy marvelous!

Stealing Sheep’s Not Real is out now, while Gwenno’s album, released late last year, is getting a reissue later in 2015.

Galants – ‘This Is Heaven’

galants-2-1

Following on from their impressive debut double A- Side ‘Howling/Silver’ last year, Dublin-based Galants have returned with a brand new single, ‘This Is Heaven’.

The first of a trio of summer singles, ‘This Is Heaven’ is a warm fuzzy number, sonically charged with layers of shoegazing goodness, jangled hooks and melodic exchanges that recall some of Creation Records reverb-soaked finest moments. Galants have merged the noise making promise of their previous release ‘Howling // Silver’ with a well honed vibrant urgency and confidence. Part one of three this maybe but ‘This Is Heaven’ is magnificent and should immediately prick your ears up and catch you hook, line and sinker. One thing is for sure; it certainly sets the scene nicely for the rest of their forthcoming singles.

Check ‘This Is Heaven’ below.

Kelly Lee Owens – ‘Uncertain’

11390189_405211849680111_9003363681865003125_n

Kelly Lee Owens may be an unfamiliar name, but her voice should be recognisable, especially fans of Daniel Avery and Ghost Culture, having collaborated with both on their excellent, recent records.

However, the London producer and vocalist is carving out a rising reputation in her own right. Earlier this year Owens released a two track single ‘Lucid/Arthur’ and at the end of July, she is releasing ‘Uncertain’ paired with a club reworking of the aforementioned ‘Lucid’. ‘Uncertain’ is a haunting piece of gothic pop. Filled with swirling textures and atmospherics, an ominous bassline and sweeping orchestral string arrangements conspire to create an otherworldly backdrop for Owens’ ethereal vocals to mesmerise and enchant in equal measure. Murky, chilling and foreboding but equally, it is utterly beautiful.

Owens second EP, Uncertain is released on July 31st. You can listen to ‘Uncertain’ and a snippet of the club reworked ‘Lucid’, below now.

Neon Wolf – ‘A Place To Call Home’

Neon Wolf

To date, Kilkenny-based Neon Wolf have built a pretty solid rep when it comes to catchy, easy-on-the-ears indie-rock with infectious pop leanings.

Things sound like they’re kicking it up a notch for the 5-piece with the release of their brand new single, ‘A Place To Call Home’, on UK label Killing Moon. ‘A Place To Call Home’ is a vibrant and colourful piece of synth sprinkled indie-pop. Flush with pleasure it bounces along with iridescent melodies, bright rhythms and more hooks than a gigantic cloakroom, and all imbued with some serious tropical vibes. It brings to mind a certain other Irish band and famed purveyors of melodic indie-pop, namely, Two Door Cinema Club, in their pomp. An irresistible three-minute slice of electronic-tinged indie-pop, this is a rather fine return from Neon Wolf.

‘A Place To Call Home’ is out now and you can listen to it below, or purchase it via iTunes. For those of you back home headed to Longitude this weekend, Neon Wolf play the Main Stage, Saturday at 2pm.

Hooton Tennis Club – ‘P.O.W.E.R.F.U.L P.I.E.R.R.E’

hooton_tennis_club_hires

Things are shaping up nicely for Hooton Tennis Club‘s highly anticipated debut LP, Highest Point In Cliff Town, which shall be with us on August 28.

Easily one of the year’s most joyous and treasured findings, the Wirral foursome are back with a super new single, ‘P.O.W.E.R.F.U.L P.I.E.R.R.E’. Typically languid, lo-fi scrappy guitar pop brilliance, it’s jam-packed with ramshackle, endearing alt-rock riffs, cryptic lyrics and a supremely sing-a-long, spell-a-long chorus. While Pavement comparisons abound, there’s an unquestionable and quintessentially British indie pop flavour to their sound. ‘P.O.W.E.R.F.U.L P.I.E.R.R.E’ is a marvellous reminder of (or introduction, if you’re new) Hooton Tennis Club’s sun-soaked, carefree and odd-ball pop antics.

The Bill Ryder Jones produced album Highest Point In Cliff Town is out via Heavenly Recordings on August 28. Check out the new single ‘P.O.W.E.R.F.U.L P.I.E.R.R.E’ below, with more over here, too.

BarryGruff’s Albums of 2015 So Far……

bg2015sofar

I’m not exactly the best at keeping you and the site up-to-date with album reviews, to be honest, it’s the old enemy time. Discovering the hours to scribble some thoughts about this album or that has become rather elusive, but thankfully finding time to listen to albums, and music in general, is less of an issue.

Here are a list of my most listened and loved records of 2015 so far with Spotify links and playlists for overall albums of 2015. There are plenty of playlists on Spotify and Soundcloud and on the blog too. Oh, and with regards to albums *cough, cough*, you can still download GruffWuff, a 19 track compilation celebrating 5 years of BarryGruff, for FREE from bandcamp, *cough, cough*.

Top 24 albums of 2015 so far…

01. Czarface – ‘Every Hero Needs A Villain’

02. H. Hawkline – ‘In The Pink Of Condition’

03. Villagers – ‘Darling Arithmetic

04. Blur – ‘The Magic Whip’

05. Ghost Culture – ‘Ghost Culture’

06. Boxed In – ‘Boxed In’

07. Django Django – ‘Born Under Saturn’

08. Girlpool – ‘Before The World Was Big’

09. Stealing Sheep – ‘Not Real’

10. The Charlatans – ‘Modern Nature’

11. Courtney Barnett – ‘Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit’

12. Gaz Coombes – ‘Matador’

13. Hot Chip – ‘Why Make Sense?’

14. Applescal – ‘For’

15. Public Service Broadcasting – ‘The Race For Space’

16. Jamie xx – ‘In Colour’

17. Sen Segur – ‘Films’

18. Zefur Wolves – ‘Zefur Wolves’

19. Faith Healer – ‘Cosmic Troubles’

20. Mowbird – ‘One-Offs’

21. Joanna Gruesome – ‘Peanut Butter’

22. Fort Romeau – ‘Insides’

23. Rozi Plain – ‘Friend’

24. Pale Honey – ‘Pale Honey’

Continue reading

Lethal Dialect – ‘New Dublin Saunter’ (Feat. Jess Kav)

11216215_936359999718157_8256315022828407886_o-1

As part of the Dublin2020 European Capital of Culture in 2020 bid, Lethal Dialect has put together a new track inspired by the Dublin ’40s folk song ‘The Dublin Saunter (Dublin Can Be Heaven)’.

Backed by a light piano and horns adding a jazzy feel, ‘New Dublin Saunter’ is melodic and ever so easy on the ear. This is Lethal Dialect at his finest. With his usual impressive word-play, a gritty and no holes barred view of Dublin is keenly observed, and depicted through eyes of returning rover – “Got off the flight from Boston, tired yawning, first port of call my hometown, cloaked in smog and rainwaterfall, asphalt, cobblestones, polluted river, bikes and trollies thrown…” If you’ve avoided an introduction to one of Ireland’s finest rappers thus far, this is as good place as any to hop on board.

The video for ‘New Dublin Saunter’ was directed by Terry McMahon and the song is available for free from Soundcloud.

The Expert – ‘Devine’

a3602593388_10-e1436435278345

Dublin’s hip hop producer extraordinaire The Expert (aka Cian Galvin) will released his long awaited and highly anticipated debut album, Dynamic Drift, next week.

We already heard ‘Da Wha?’, when it premiered here back in May and with next weeks big day in mind, The Expert has returned with another absolute marvel, ‘Devine’. Casting his gaze far back into the annals of soul, he’s come up trumps with new single, ‘Devine’ in all its stunning, instrumental glory. Oozing with confidence and swagger, it rolls hypnotically along, amid a confederation of slick samples, beats and atmospheric flourishes. Irrefutably superb and irresistibly infectious. The Expert has long been a firm favourite, be it his work as part of stellar hip-hop duo Messiah J & The Expert or his solo output,  so it’s no surprise that ‘Da Wha?’ is brilliant, ‘Devine’ is astounding and his new album promises to be on par with the this gold standard.

You can check out ‘Devine’ and the Tom Hill produced video below. Also, you can listen to The Experts’ GruffWuff inclusion, ‘Swapsies’ – of which you can download here for FREE.