Category: indie rock

If you’ve been frequenting JOVM over the past few months, you may recall that I wrote about the British and Brazilian industrial rock band Plastique. Comprised of vocalist Anelise Kunz, multi-instrumentalist Fabio Couto and producer Gabriel Ralis, formed back in 2010 and with the release of their self-titled debut and their sophomore effort, #SocialScar, the trio received both national and international attention for a sound that’s inspired by Nine Inch NailsGarbagePJ HarveyGoldfrappBrody Dalle, The Smashing PumpkinsThe Prodigy and The Beastie Boys. Adding to a growing national and international profile, the band was named one of the Top 5 in Marshall’s Ultimate Band Contest in 2013.

Naturally, wanting to build upon the steadily growing buzz around the band, the members of the trio initially went into the studio with the intention of expanding upon the sound that had won them attention. But once they started writing material they realized that they all feeling an inordinate amount of pressure to come up with something new, and as the story goes they went on a hiatus with the hopes that some time off would help. As the band’s Anelise Kunz mentioned in press notes their first single in some time “Quake,” “came out as a sign of hope . . . there was no pressure, the vocal jam just happened, and soon we were all involved in getting this one ready to go!”

“Lips,” Plastique’s latest single is informed by a series of demos the band had recorded while working on their previous single “Quake,” and in many ways that spirit of experimentation informed the track. Sonically, the song pairs layers of scuzzy, heavy metal-like guitars, industrial clang and clatter, propulsive drum programming and anthemic hooks that you can imagine a crowded club of enthusiastic fans shouting along to paired with Kunz’s sneering, growling punk-leaning vocals. In some way, the song (to my ears, at least) reminds me of the punishing forcefulness of Ministry (in particular, “What About Us?” one of my favorite Ministry songs) with the attitude of Garbage (in particular, “Supervixen“). Throughout the song you can tell that the band does not fuck around; they’re going to take names and kick ass — but with an irresistible sultriness.

 

 

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New Video: Follow A Partying Death on His Day Off in White Reaper’s New Video for “Make Me Wanna Die”

Comprised of Tony Esposito (vocals, guitar), Ryan Hater (keyboards), Sam Wilkerson (bass) and Nick Wilkerson (drums), Louisville, KY-based quartet White Reaper have become yet another mainstay act on the site. After the release of a blistering and urgent […]

Comprised of John Gill (vocals, bass, guitar and synth), Greg Tebbano (lead guitar, lead synth and backing vocals), David Octal (bass), and Ben Patten (drums), the Saratoga Springs, NY-based post punk quartet The Black Ships derive their name from the Western vessels that sailed to Japan during the 16th to 19th centuries. And with the forthcoming release of their latest effort, Dead Empires, slated for a December 4 release, the Upstate New York-based quartet hope to prove that Saratoga Springs is the home of a burgeoning wave music scene  — in particular, a burgeoning shoegaze/dark wave/chill wave scene — as the town is best known as the home of blogosphere darlings Phantogram.

Dead Empires‘ latest single album title track “Dead Empires” sounds as though it owes a major sonic debt to Joy Division, The Cure and 4AD Records —  while also channeling contemporaries like The Harrow, Dead Leaf Echo and others, as the song is comprised of atmospheric synths, slashing, angular bass and shimmering guitar chords and four-on-the-floor drumming paired ethereal vocals. If you’re a child of the 80s as I am, the Saratoga Springs-based quartet’s sound will be familiar — it’s a darkly seductive and danceable sound. But interestingly enough, what will set the band apart from their contemporaries is the fact that the band’s frontman John Gill is a self-proclaimed avid history buff, and Dead Empires lyrics concern themselves with how history’s course and flow affects and influences everything. And as Gill explains in press notes “Looking back on historical events of the past adds a romantic tinge to things and a certain yearning for past times and traditions.” In some way, it gives the material a swooning Romanticism that belies its brooding nature.

Comprised of Karen O. (vocals), Nick Zimmer (guitar) and Brian Chase (drums), the New York-based trio Yeah Yeah Yeahs have been a critically and commercially successful act with the release of their four full-length efforts, Fever to Tell (2003), Show Your Bones (2006), It’s Blitz! (2009), and Mosquito (2014). Interestingly, out of all of their efforts, it’s the trio’s third full-length effort, It’s Blitz! that manages to be a major change in sonic direction for the band as the material primarily employs atmospheric electronics, layers of buzzing and undulating synths. And although the album’s first three or four songs are arguably the most dance-floor ready the trio have ever released, the album’s remaining songs manage to be moodily atmospheric. Interestingly, the entire album is an exercise in restraint as Zimmer’s guitar playing and Karen O’s vocals are carefully reined in.

Album single “Skeletons” is a spectral and atmospheric song that pairs gently undulating synths, gentle yet dramatic drumming and Karen O’s ethereal vocals in a song that gently builds up tension until the song’s quiet conclusion. The song evokes wisps of smoke curling upward and dissipating into the ether . . .

Comprised of three long-time friends, Liz Drummond, Hannah Field, and Annie Hamilton, the Australian-based trio Little May have quickly become one of their homeland’s most buzzed about bands with the release of their debut effort For The Company, which was released last month to critical praise from the likes of WNYC, Stereogum, Noisey, Billboard and others. And over the past month or so, the Australian trio had been on a lengthy North American tour, which ended last night; but before their tour ended, the Drummond, Field and Hamilton released a cover of Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ “Skeletons” that features a gorgeous three part harmonies paired with guitar chords played through reverb, atmospheric electronics and military-styled drumming, which naturally changes the song’s arrangement. It’s a fairly straightforward cover — but it manages to be equally spectral and gorgeous cover nonetheless.