Wilding – ‘Swipe Right’

Melbourne psych-pop purveyor Wilding – aka Justin Wilding Stokes – has charmed us with gloriously playful, jovial and off-kilter pop at every given opportunity and following a period of relative quietness, he is back with some life brightening music.

Infectious and jaunty cosmic psych pop is the order of the day with ‘Swipe Right’ – the third single from his new album The Death Of Foley’s Mall – as he leads us through the dispiriting pursuit of finding human connection through online dating amid lockdown. ‘Swipe Right’ is quintessential Wilding as it bops along an infectious groove, bouncing synths and bright syncopated guitars and hooks you could hang your hat on with melodic vocals floating above. It is a sweet and charming sound all wrapped with a delicious pop sensibility that will have you hooked from the get-go. This is irresistible pop eccentricity at its best and a timely reminder of Wilding’s boundless talents, and is an artist that merits such wider acclaim.

Listen to ‘Swipe Right’ below and if that floats your metaphorical boat, why not check out the new album The Death Of Foley’s Mall here.

Mirror Test Share Jangle-tastic New Single; ‘You’ll Never Get The Things In Life You Deserve’


Earlier this month we were introduced to the delectable talents of Mirror Test. The Aussie outfit aren’t wasting any time and have unveiled a brand new single, ‘You’ll Never Get The Things In Life You Deserve’.

Comprised of friends from various Melbourne bands – including psych-popper Wilding, Tam Vantage & Grand Prismatic – brought together through a shared love ’80s British indie like The Pale Fountains and The Smiths. It is hardly surprising that like their debut single, ‘Washed Up’, ‘You’ll Never Get The Things In Life You Deserve’ is cut from a similarly, classic indie mould. It is a jangle-tastic piece of retro-guitar-pop. Generally bright, buoyant and infectious, ‘You’ll Never Get The Things In Life You Deserve’ is tempered with moody, hushed vocals that add a certain tone of melancholia. For want of a better description, it sounds a lot like the long lost lovechild of The Smiths and The Coral – as good enough as reason as any to give it a listen.

You can listen to ‘You’ll Never Get The Things In Life You Deserve’ & ‘Washed Up’ below – that’s plenty of quality to keep us going till Mirror Test work on a debut EP.

Introducing: Mirror Test


Some of you may remember Melbourne based psych-popper Wilding (aka Justin Wilding Stokes) coming in for lavish praise on the blog, numerous times over the past few years.

Well, Wilding has teamed up with a bunch of friends from various Melbourne bands, including Tam Vantage & Grand Prismatic, for a new project called Mirror Test. Connecting through a shared love ’80s British indie – like The Pale Fountains and The Smiths – it is little surprise then, that their debut single ‘Washed Up’ is of a similar mould. With guitars bright and shimmering, ‘Washed Up’ is an bright, infectious and irresistible cut of sing-along, jingle-jangle indie. Hushed vocals add a certain tone of melancholia, as we’re treated to a rather splendid three-and-a-half minutes, emulating the sparkling brilliance of Echo & The Bunnymen or The Smiths at their finest.

You can check out new single ‘Washed Up’ below now, while we await Mirror Tests’ debut EP, which is in the works too.

BarryGruff Albums of the Year (2015)

BGs Albums of the year 2015So it is that time of year again, lists, lists and more lists. Well, not be out done, here are my 41 (yes 41, and yes it’s a weird number) albums of 2015.

It has been such a good year for new albums, probably the best since I started the blog back in 2010. So much so that there is very little difference between the top 5, top 10, top 15 and so on. So without further ado, here are my favourite records from 2015:

There is also a Spotify playlist of the Top 20 albums, to save you time and hassle (it’s here).

41. Only Real – Jerk At The End of the Line’

40. Rozi Plain – ‘Friend’

39. Wildling – ‘Molecules To Moon’

38. The School – ‘Wasting Away And Wondering’

37. Sweet Baboo – ‘Boombox Ballads’

36. The Stammer – ‘Days In Between’

35. SexWitch – Sex Witch’

34. Faith Healer – ‘Cosmic Troubles’

33. Girl Band – ‘Holding Hands With Jamie’

32. Joanna Gruesome – ‘Peanut Butter’

31. Fort Romeau – ‘Insides

30. Soft Serve – ‘S/t’

29. Applescal – ‘For’

28. Zefur Wolves – ‘Zefur Wolves’

27. Hot Chip – ‘Why Make Sense?’

26. Drenge – ‘Undertow’

25. The Charlatans – ‘Modern Nature’

24. Gaz Coombes – ‘Matador’

23. Bill Ryder-Jones – ‘West Kirby County Primary’

22. Drinks – ‘Hermits on Holiday’

21. The Expert – Dynamic Drift

20. Boxed In – ‘Boxed In’

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Millions Like Us Podcast: Episode #2

Millions Like Us E2 Logo-1

Delighted to share ‘Episode #2’ of Millions Like Us – a new music podcast hosted by myself & craft beer, pastie and fast-food safari enthusiast, Justin Beats – in conjunction with Vancouver news & culture site 604now.

A bi-weekly installment of new tunes, some musings and general chit-chat, with a Vancouver slant, Episode #2 has a very nice blend of music from metro Vancouver, and beyond. Obviously these are still early days and we’re looking forward to developing it further and further, over the coming weeks and months. Not much else to say really, aside from thanks to 604now and we hope you enjoy the show (all feedback, good or bad, is most welcome). Here’s to good listening.

You can read more on it here and listen to episode #2 below, and the tracklist (with links) is after the jump.

Episode #2: 

Nancy Leticia – ‘Bitches’
Noble Oak – ‘Erase Me’
Villagers – ‘Hot Scary Summer’
Nick Diamonds – ‘Specimen Days’
Avid Walker – ‘Sun In Eyes’ –
Wilding – ‘Stuck In The Middle’
Mac Demarco – ‘No Other Heart’
The Courtney’s – ‘90210’
Tuff Love – ‘Duke’
HINDS – ‘Garden’
Sunflower Bean – ‘The Stalker’
Woolworm – ‘Useless’

BarryGruff’s April 2015 Playlist


A regular monthly feature to the blog; a nice, neat and handy playlist of tracks featured during the month.

It was another excellent month for new music, one which saw the return of CZARFACE, Miaoux Miaoux, Girlpool and Jinx Lennon, with new tracks from their respective forthcoming albums. There were new singles from The Urges, Wilding, Fold, Tuff Love, Hippies Vs Ghosts, Lazy Day, Freedom Fry & Imploded View, and tracks from forthcoming EPs from Tomorrows, Graham Cooney & JUNK.

Also featuring on the playlist are: The School, Fueds, Mowbird & Cotton Wolf. Yeah, so, April was pretty damn good.

Listen to BarryGruff’s April 2015 playlist below.

Introducing: Wilding

Wilding Music

Perhaps you remember ‘Ciaran and Wilding’ from late last year? A collaboration between Super Furry Animals’ Cian Ciarán and Melbourne psych-popper Wilding? You do? Good. If not, here’s a recap. While we’re certainly well acquainted with Ciarán’s many and fascinating exploits. But with regards to Wilding, it’s fair to say, we are less familiar with. Until now.

Wilding is the musical moniker of Melbourne based songwriter and UK ex-pat, Justin Wilding Stokes. Inspired by ’60s-psych, classic pop and Madchester grooves, his music is a glorious collection of playful, jovial and off-kilter pop. Dripping with melody and harmony, it is overwhelmingly endearing, sometimes odd and often tinged with a sense of melancholy. His latest single, ‘Everybody is the Same’ is a triumphant, buoyant and playfully jovial tune, with a simple but bold message; we are all the same. It also captures his penchant for the unusual. The juxtaposition between the off-kilter clamour of unsettling to the sweeping melodies and brass in full swing is so full of verve and vigor. ‘Stuck In The Middle’ offers a different side to his talent meanwhile. It takes a chic blend of beautiful textures, swooning strings, rich sounds, creating an atmosphere of true beauty and tranquillity. In doing so, ekking out that sweet spot between delight and melancholy. All in all, an utterly infectious, loveable and decidedly charming sound.

There are but a few samples for Wildings charming sounds below – if they are to your liking, there’s plenty more on his Soundcloud page, including his debut album, Bird’s Bread. A new LP is expected later in 2015.