Zefur Wolves – ‘Stars of Omaha’ (A Tribute to John Trudell)

SoO 1400x1400

Revolving around the twin talents of Cian Ciaran from Super Fury Animals and Estelle from Baby Queens, Zefur Wolves have returned following a two year absence.

The Welsh outfit’s return is marked by new single ‘Stars of Omaha'; their first new music since their wonderful self-titled debut in 2015. The single is a tribute to Native American author, poet, actor, musician, and political activist, John Trudell, with all proceeds going to The Standing Rock Foundation.

‘Stars of Omaha’ continues in a similar vein to that of their debut LP, with a clear preference for creating powerful, emotive and politically tinged shoegazey-grunge. Imbued with a sense of awe and mysticism, a swirl of mellow, atmospheric sound surrounds Estelle’s impassioned vocal, which in turn is greeted by stripped-back bass and guitar, that gradually evolve heavier and louder. The chunky guitar chords are tempered by languid drumbeat as feint layers of vocal sustain a sense of otherworldly atmosphere and spirit. A wonderful political themed, shoegaze and psychedelic waltz.

You can check out ‘Stars of Omaha’ below or purchase from here; with all proceeds from the song will go to The Standing Rock Foundation. Buy it here.

Introducing: Three Thieves

14238128_1777722189168744_3726793130251745924_n

Three Thieves is the moniker of Cardiff based producer, Tom Clugston and his approach is fearless and superlative.

Three Thieves serves a spellbinding synthesis of sound embracing all things hip hop, electronica, drum & bass and a wealth of other electronic beat driven genres. In short, Clugston digs beats, and my, can he deliver them with pin-point accuracy; something acutely evident on his sublime and most recent EP, Zero Hour. Three Thieves is in his element with the melodic, fluid and perky drum & bass indebted ‘Blue Green’ and ‘Luminar’, in particular. Combining flourishes of synths, light skittering beats and dazzling keys, providing a really uplifting positive vibe and warm, inviting sounds. These are but two stellar moments from what is a sublime EP, and one that has one that has been on constant rotation in recent weeks.

Check out ‘Blue Green’ and ‘Luminar’ below and you can stream the entire Zero Hour EP here. Without a shadow of a doubt, you will be better for letting it, and Three Thieves into your life.

IRMA VEP – ‘A Woman’s Work Is Never Done’

IRMA VEP

Manchester via North Wales musician IRMA VEP – aka Edwin Stevens – released a his new album, No Handshake Blues last week.

Accompanying album number four under the IRMA VEP moniker, is the LP’s lead single, and album opener, ‘A Woman’s Work Is Never Done’. It is a world-weary and shadowy 11-minutes plus of epic, sprawling distortion, feedback and psychedelic drone. The vocals are almost entirely swathed in distortion and reverb rendering the lyrics indecipherable, amid the already swirling fuzz and feedback. A thrilling and epic introduction to Irma Vep’s new and experimental sound, and album too.

You can listen to the epic ‘A Woman’s Work Is Never Done’ below. If that is to your liking, you can hear the new album, No Handshake Blues, over here.

Gulp Share New Single ‘Search For Your Love’

GULP 2016

The Cardiff-based spacey psych-poppers, Gulp – revolving around Lindsey Leven & Guto Pryce of Super Furry Animals fame – have shared their new single ‘Search For Your Love’.

Recorded in the summer of 2016 on a farm in mid Wales, ‘Search For Your Love’ follows on from Gulp’s bewitching 2014 debut album Season Sun and it is a wonderfully natural successor. ‘Search For Your Love’ further refines the pair’s warm, fuzzy, lush psych-pop by combining spacey sounds and textures with a luscious melody proggy-guitars and synths. In doing so they create something hypnotic and unique, and topped off by Leven’s sultry vocals, this is the very essence of dreams. What a magnificent return. Now is the time to sit back and let ‘Search For Your Love’ flow over you and seep into your senses, and leave you better for it.

‘Search For Your Love’ is available now via via Tim Burgess’ independent label O Genesis and Gulp are currently working with Luke Abbott on their second album, which is set to be released in 2017.

We Are Animal Return With New Single ‘Capoeira’

We Are Animal 2016

It’s been a quite a while since we’ve heard anything from We Are Animal – which is a shame by any calculation.

The North Wales band released their splendid debut album in 2010, followed by a number of singles and last we heard from them as a collective unit was a tour with The Joy Formidable in 2013. More recently the various members of the We Are Animal family have been concerning themselves with various side-projects Hippies Vs Ghosts, Fauna Twin & CaStLeS – until now – We Are Animal have released a brand new single, ‘Capoeira’. Gritty, dark and edgy, ‘Capoeira’ is engulfed in layers if fuzz and eerie and menacing tones. Cutting through this shadowy blanket of murky fuzz is the muscular, shredding guitars and buzzing riffs, upping the intensity and ferocity, while propelled along an irresistible rhythmic groove. Fierce, hypnotic and spooky, ‘Capoeira’ might just be We Are Animal’s finest and most complete work to date. And my, that is saying something.

Regards a new album, the band have established a ‘Pledge Music’ campaign to help fund the next record – all the details on that, are here. For now, get in on ‘Capoeira’ below. It does not disappoint.

Cate Le Bon Announces ‘Rock Pool’ EP; Shares Title Track

cate-le-bon-2012-colour-4-hi-res-c-angel-ceballos-770x470

Hot on the heels of one of 2016’s finest records, Crab Day, Cate Le Bon has announced a new EP Rock Pool.

Released on January 27 2017, the EP will include four previously unreleased songs dating from the ‘Crab Day’ sessions. Ahead of the forthcoming EP, we’ve been provided with taster and title-track. In just over three minutes, ‘Rock Pool’ is the embodiment to why Le Bon is a treasure. The Welsh artist is difficult to box-off with a taste for offbeat folk but an equal a propensity for psych. Swirling and imaginative, ‘Rock Pool’ sees Le Bon’s unique and powerfully versatile voice backed by a steady beat, swaying, acrobatic guitar jangle, odd sounds and keys. The strangeness, jarring arrangements and musical whimsy probably wouldn’t resonate so much were it not for the moments of melodic sweetness. A dazzling display of Cate Le Bon’s boundless versatility, captivating psych-folk and sheer brilliance.

Produced by Noah Georgeson and Josiah Steinbrick, and featuring musicians H. Hawkline, Stephen Black (Sweet Baboo) and Stella Mozgawa (Warpaint), the EP will be released on January 27th 2017. Listen to ‘Rock Pool’ below.

Fauna Twin – ‘Edge Of The Coin’

12376655-537920049710977-316770630502012472-n-1170x480-quadrantt

Claire Jacquemard and Wales’ Owain Ginsberg (Hippies Vs Ghosts / We Are Animal) are Fauna Twin, and the pair will release their debut EP next month.

Inventive, gently psychedelic and embracing a flair for the epic and dramatic, it is keeping with the duo’s excellent work to date. Building from a dramatic, chilling opening, ‘Edge Of The Coin’ thaws gradually to reveal a playfully energised blitz of beats, synth and percussion, cut through the atmospheric textures with an uncontrollable sonic groove. With Jacquemard’s crisp vocals soaring high above, it all builds and bubbles toward a rousing climax bristling with vitality, and one that’ll have you reaching straight for the repeat button. A sublime single; lot’s to look forward to from this talented duo.

The Hydra EP is released on 17 November via Crammed Discs. For now, sit back and enjoy all that Fauna Twin and ‘Edge Of The Coin’ have to offer.

Introducing: The Immediate

14542451_1745853119009996_5207162663007097417_o

There’s a bit or a role reversal with this one, all will become abundantly clear below….

The Immediate are a three-piece power pop band from Mold in north Wales. Originally active in the ’90s, they split in 1997 due to frustration, an argument over a mouth organ and the success of Stereophonics – all valid reasons, no?

Earlier this year however, the trio of of Duncan Farmer, Richard Harrison & Adam Walton reunited – the latter’s BBC Radio Wales show is one of my favourites and a fine source of superb new Welsh tunes (role reversal explained) – not for one last crack at fame but for the love of making music. This love and that of music from The Jam, Small Faces, Ride, Badfinger & Teenage Fanclub among others, shines through brightly. Crafting songs about hope and love in the face of the moribund, daily grind, playing to please only themselves, with no thoughts of success or acclaim and having fun along the way. Taken from their debut EP Shadows and Ghosts, ‘Yoko’ is a case in point. Succinctly summing up The Immediate’s raison d’etre in a scintillating three-minutes, ‘Yoko’ is a guitar heavy, riff-filled indie rocker bursting with melody and vitality; and in Walton’s own words, it’s ace! Sometimes that is quite enough.

There is an album in the offing for the new year but for now, why not give ‘Yoko’ a spin below. You can get their debut EP, Shadows and Ghosts as a free download via Bandcamp.

CaStLeS Announce Debut Album, Share New Single ‘Amcanu’

castlesphotoshoot3

Having kept a watchful eye of North Walian trio CaStLeS for quite sometime now, it is really great discover they shall release their debut album Fforesteering on 18th November.

The trio have impressed at every given opportunity with a signature sound that sits somewhere between Django Django, the Beach Boys, Os Mutantes and Ennio Morricone. Recorded and self-produced inside a static caravan outside of guitarist and vocalist Cynyr’s home high up on the hills of Snowdonia, the album looks set to continue the themes of their PartDepart EP and take inspiration and comfort from the surrounding North Wales landscape. Preceding the release of their debut LP is new single ‘Amcanu’ (out November 4th). Splicing together psychedelic surf rock, blues and mildly dancey, kraut-rock grooves with sweet vocals harmonies, this swirling infusion sees CaStLeS craft a unique sonic brew of irresistible grooves laced with psych riffs and hypnotic reverb soaked melodies. An utterly brilliant single and sound – nothing new there!

CaStLeS debut album Fforesteering is out on 18th November but you can listen to ‘Amcanu’ & previous single version of the album’s title-track, below, now.

Hippies Vs Ghosts Returns With Scintillating New Single, ‘II’

12022565_399779740146760_1614742173990950787_o

Time after time, Hippies Vs Ghosts (aka Owain Ginsberg), has monumentally blown us away with his explosive and experimental union of kaleidoscopic, krautrock sounds. Needless to say, any signs of new material is cause for great excitement!

With that in mind, Hippies Vs Ghosts have returned with a brand new scintillating single, ‘II’, and it is SUBLIME! Possessing all the typical Hippies Vs Ghosts’ brilliance – part psychedelic, part krautrock – ‘II’ is thrust forward through a freewheeling and colourful kaleidoscopic world, with an irresistible groove, blistering instrumentals and scintillating guitars. A ferocious, exhilarating and imaginative four-and-a-half-minute trip; and yet another outrageously awesome tune. Such a unique and vital talent, under the careful stewardship of Ginsberg, this is something we’ve become accustomed to when it comes to Hippies Vs Ghosts – and long may it continue.

You can check out ‘II’ below and if you’re looking for more, why not pop over here and check out Hippies Vs Ghosts’ most excellent back-catalogue?