Tag: psych rock

New Audio: The Limiñanas Return with a Slow Burning and Meditative New Single

The Limiñanas are a Perpignan, France-based duo, who have developed a reputation as one of France’s most renowned psych rock acts — and for a sound that comfortably straddles the boundaries of psych rock, shoegaze and and yé-yé, as their songs typically feature arrangements rooted around fuzzy, distorted power chords, reverb heavy hooks and effortlessly cool vocals. And while clearly being indebted to 60s guitar pop and psych rock, the duo manage to capture something quintessentially French. 

Now, as you may recall, the duo’s soon-to-be released effort Istanbul Is Sleepy was initially recorded at the duo’s home studio and finished at Anton Newcombe’s Berlin-based studio, and unsurprisingly, the EP’s title track and first single “Istanbul Is Sleepy” found the French duo collaborating with the The Brian Jonestown Massacre founder and frontman, who contributed both his imitable vocals and guitar to a scuzzy, garage rock-like track with the sort of underlying menace reminiscent of The Black Angels — although interestingly enough, Newcombe was reportedly inspired by Rain-era The Cult.
As the members of The Limiñanas recall in press notes, the collaboration can trace its origins to last year, when Mojo Magazine asked them to contribute a track to a Kinks tribute compilation. “We chose ‘Two Sisters,’” Lionel explains in press notes. “Marie and I were thinking for the vocal part, it would be great to approach Anton Newcombe, having opened for The Brian Jonestown Massacre at Le Trianon in Paris. The work began like that. We had an album to record and we decided to finish it with him. During the Christmas week we took our demos, flew to Berlin and recorded at Anton’s studio. Six days later we had a finished album.”

The French psych rock duo’s latest single “Shadow People” is a jangling, slow-burning and almost meditative track with a hazy and dreamy hook that features a guest spot from French actress Emmanuelle Seigner. As Lionel explains in press notes, “The shadow people are an American myth, they are described as furtive apparitions, comparable to ghosts observable from the corner of the eye. These ‘spirits’ accompany throughout your all life, a sort of paranormal glue stuck to you . . . Emmanuelle came to visit us in the South of France, and we asked her to sing ‘Shadow People’ with Renaud Picard, the singer from Hair and the Iotas. We recorded it in just a few minutes over an afternoon…”. 

Deriving their name from their name from the fictional spice in Frank Herbert’s sci-fi saga Dune that makes intergalactic travel, telepathy and longevity possible, Madrid, Spain-based psych rock quintet Melange, comprised of long-time friends Adrian Ceballos (drums and vocals), Daniel Fernandez (bass and vocals), Mario Zamora (keyboard and vocals), Sergio Ceballos (guitar and vocals), and Miguel Rosón (guitar and vocals) formed back in 2014, and they are among their hometown’s most accomplished and acclaimed musicians, as individual members of the band have played in a number of locally and regionally recognized acts including Lüger, RIPKC, and Bucles and others.

Now, as you may recall, the members of Melange brashly emerged into Madrid and the Spanish music scenes with their self-released, double LP, which featured a highly conceptual narrative reportedly influence by the diverse experiences of the bandmembers with materially thematically touching upon evolution, comprehension and transformation through music — while sonically, the Spanish rockers sound drew from prog rock, psych rock and folk. And as a result of their unique sound and approach, the Spanish rockers received praise from El Pais, Mondo Sonoro, Sol Musica, and Ruta 66 as well as airplay from Radio 3, and played at some of their homeland’s biggest and well-regarded festivals including Low Festival, Sonogram Festival, Sala Stereo Festival, Sala Planta Baja, Festival Noroeste, Festival Wos, Fueu Festival and others.

Building upon a breakthrough year, the band spent their free time writing and recording their soon-to-be released Carlos Diaz-produced sophomore effort Viento Bravo live to tape at Gismo 7 Studios in Motril, Spain and Phantom Power in Madrid Spain.  Reportedly, the band’s sophomore effort finds them refining and honing their sound while retaining the elements that first won them national attention — who the album’s first single “Rio Revuelto” being reminiscent of of JOVM mainstays Boogarins, Junip , Jose Gonzales and The Yes Album-era Yes. The album’s second single “Cotard” while continuing along in a similar vein as its predecessor featured an expansive, mind-bending song structure emphasized by arpeggiated organ chords and some impressive guitar work, reminiscent of The Doors‘ “Light My Fire,” Yes’ “Roundabout,” and “I’ve Seen All Good People.

“Armas Preparadas,” Viento Bravo‘s third and latest single is the most straight forward psych rocker of the album, as it features an incredibly tight melody, an uncannily lush sense of harmony and some impressive guitar work paired with an expansive, twisting and turning song structure. And perhaps most important, possesses  an urgent improvised at the fly of a moment feel, revealing them to arguably be one of Spain’s most interesting and beguiling bands of the moment.

 

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past couple of years, you may have come across a post or two featuring Brooklyn-based psych rock/indie rock trio Sunflower Bean.  The trio which is comprised of Julia Cumming (bass, lead vocals) and founding duo Nick Kivlen (guitar, vocals) and Jacob Faber (drums) can trace their origins back to 20123 when Kivlen and Faber were members of Turnip King, and at the time, Kivlen and Faber had been spending a great deal of time practicing and jamming together, and decided that it was time to go out on their own. Cumming, who was then a member of of Supercute! with Rachel Trachtenburg, was recruited by Kivlen, who had known her through mutual friends. 

The band quickly rose to national attention after playing 8 critically applauded sets over the course of 4 days during 2014’s CMJ Festival, along with a series of shows across town; however, the act started to receive both national and international attention with the release of 2014’s Rock & Roll Heathen EP and 2015’s Show Me Your Seven Secrets EP, an EP that featured the critically applauded singles “Tame Impala” and “2013.” Adding to a growing profile, the Brooklyn-based trio toured the US and the UK as a headliner and as an opener for Wolf AliceBest Coast and The Vaccines. The Brooklyn-based trio then followed it up with their Matthew Molnar-produced debut effort Human Ceremony, which was released last year to critical praise.

After spending the better part of 2016 touring to support Human Ceremony, which included an impressive Burger Records Beach Bash 2 set, the trio have released their first new single in some time “I Was A Fool.” And while closely hewing to the period that has most influenced their sound and aesthetic — late 60s psych rock and 70s classic rock — the Brooklyn trio’s latest single not only finds them at their loosest and most self-assured, it finds them gently pushing their sound in the direction of breezy yet deliberately crafted 70s AM rock, with their latest track sounding as though it were influenced by Fleetwood Mac.  But underneath the song’s breeziness, the trio capture something that my colleagues, who have written about the song have missed — that while all-consuming love can be swooning and urgent, it can also be deeply ambivalent, if not profoundly helpless; after all, love is arguably one of the ridiculous, inexplicable, frustrating, and most wonderful things we’ll ever really know.

Interestingly as the band’s Nick Kivlen explains in press notes, “‘I Was A Fool’ is one of those songs that seemingly crept up from nowhere and into our practice space. it was a special moment between the three of us, Julia and I both improvised the lyrics. It feels far longer but it’s been nearly two years since ‘we’ve put new music into the world. I think this song is a good example of how we’ve grown as a band, while still staying true to the band that first played together back in high school.”

With the release of the new single, the band also announced that they signed to renowned indie label Mom + Pop Music, and they will be embarking on a lengthy UK tour before playing a series of North American tour dates, including a November 30 stop at Brooklyn’s newest venue Elsewhere. Check out the tour dates below.

 

Tour dates – North American shows in BOLD

11/08 – Bristol, UK @ 02 Bristol *
11/09 – Manchester, UK @ 02 Apollo *
11/11 – Glasgow, SCT @ Barrowlands *
11/12 – Glasgow, SCT @ Barrowlands *
11/13 – Newcastle, UK @ 02 Academy *
11/15 – Nottingham, UK @ Rock City *
11/16 – Birmingham, UK @ 02 Academy *
11/17 – Norwich, UK @ UEA *
11/18 – Leeds, UK @ 01 Academy *
11/20 – Brighton, UK @ Dome *
11/21 – Southampton, UK @ 02 Guildhall *
11/24 – London, UK @ Alexandra Palace *
11/27 – Belfast, North Ireland @ Ulster Hall *
11/28 – Dublin, Ireland @ Olympia *
11/30 – Brooklyn, NY @ Elsewhere

1/26 – Philadelphia, PA @ Everybody Hits
1/31 – Chicago, IL @ Metro ^
2/01 – Nashville, TN @ The Basement East ^
2/03 – Austin, TX @ Mohawk ^
2/05 – San Antonio, TX @ Paper Tiger ^
2/06 – Dallas, TX @ Granada ^
2/07 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall (Inside Downstairs) ^
2/09 – New Orleans, LA @ Republic New Orleans ^
2/10 – Athens, GA  @ 40 Watt ^
2/11 – Raleigh, NC @ Lincoln Theatre ^
2/14 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club ^
3/01 – Los Angeles, CA @ Moroccan Lounge
3/02 – San Francisco, CA @  Rickshaw Stop

* – w/ Wolf Alice
^ – w/ Sleigh Bells

New Video: Prettiest Eyes Return with a Scorching and Trippy Visuals for New Single “Don’t Call”

Comprised of San Juan, Puerto Rico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based Pachy (drums, vocals) and Marcos (bass) and the Ciudad Juarez, Mexico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based Paco, the members of synth punk/psych punk/psych rock trio Prettiest Eyes can trace their origins back to San Juan, where Pachy and Marcos played in a number of local bands before they all eventually relocated to Los Angeles to seriously pursue music. And within their first two years together, the trio realized two EPs  and their 2015 debut Looks, all of which featured sleazy, sludgy, psychedelic-tinged, garage punk rooted around throbbing bass chords, quick-paced drumming, buzzing keys and lyrics shouted and howled in Spanish and English — and while fitting comfortably among contemporary retro-styled, psych and garage rock bands like  Raccoon Fighter, The Yetis, The Black Angels and others, the band manages to set themselves apart, as a result of their material, which frequently possesses a sweaty, primal and downright dangerous urgency, with razor sharp hooks and a retro-futuristic vibe. 

Now, it’s been some time since I’ve personally written about them but as it turns out, the band recently released their sophomore effort Pools and from the album’s latest single “Don’t Call,” the San Juan, Puerto Rico-born, Los Angeles, CA-based trio will further cement their reputation for crafting sleazy, noisy, primal punk rock that throbs with a muscular insistence. It’s nasty and it’s weird as fuck but absolutely necessary and mosh pit worthy while mischievously nodding at John Dwyer’s impressively prolific work. 

Directed, shot and edited by Laura Sofia-Perez,  the recently released video for “Don’t Call” is equally as intense as the phone, further emphasizing it’s gritty psychedelia — in some way it feels like a wild and fucked up acid trip. 

New Video: The Psychedelic Grooves and Visuals of Boy Azooga’s “Face Behind Her Cigarette”

Coming from a rather musical family — with one of his grandfathers playing drums for the Royal Marines, his father, a violinist and his mom, a clarinetist, who both played and met in the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Davey Newington is a Cardiff, Wales, UK-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrument, who’s known as the creative mastermind of indie rock/psych rock act Boy Azooga, a solo recording project that derives its name from the 1994 major motion picture, The Little Rascals. Interestingly, Newington, who took up drums when he had turned 6 and played in a number of Welsh orchestral and jazz bands as a teenager. 

As the story goes, Newington had an art teacher, who sent the then-aspiring musician off to town to buy Can’s Ege Bamyasi but along with that, Newington cites the like of Sly & The Family Stone, Caribou, Black Sabbath, Outkast, Van McCoy and The Beastie Boys among others as influences on him and his own work. For live shows, Newington recruited friends Daf Davies, Dylan Morgan and Sam Barnes, and as a quartet the band can reportedly shift from psych rock, krautrock, and shoegaze within a turn of a phrase. In fact, their latest single “Face Behind Her Cigarette” to my ears manages to nod at the dance floor friendly, psych pop of In Ghost Colours-era Cut Copy and the motorik grooves of Can but with a breezy, hook laden, almost dance floor friendly air; however, as Newington notes, the song nods to Hot Butter’s 1972 smash, synth pop album Popcorn and Nigerian funk legend William Onyeabor. “This song is basically just a celebration (rip off) of the late great William Onyeabor,” Newington explains. “I wanted the percussion to be purposefully a bit too loud, maybe by the usual standard. Loads of Onyeabor’s percussion is blaring in the mix, but it makes it sound so live and feely. I wanted to create that feeling of being in the room where the music is being played.”

The recently released music video features the band playing over some superimposed psychedelic and retro-futuristic imagery and effects — and in some way it possesses a delightfully cheesy DIY vibe. 

 

Earlier this month, I wrote about the Stockholm, Sweden-based psych rock band Marble Mammoth. Featuring members, who have played in The Unisex, and have collaborated with  The MC5s Mike Davis and The Hellacopters‘ and Imperial State Electric’s Nicke Anderson, the band quickly developed a reputation across their native Sweden for a sound that meshes the bluesy power chords of Led Zeppelin with the dreamy, psychedelia of the likes of Tame Impala — although their previously released single “Wrecked Ship” reminded me of JOVM mainstays Goat and Black Sabbath, thanks to some blistering guitar pyrotechnics paired with soaring organ chords and rousingly anthemic hooks. Unsurprisingly, the Swedish rock band’s latest single “Glitter Amongst Gravel” continues in a similar vein, further cementing their reputation for crating material with incredibly dexterous guitar pyrotechnics and incredibly ambitious and expansive song structures, complete with twisting and turning organ chords — but it may be among the most gritty and prog rock-like songs they’ve released to date.

 

 

Founded by production and songwriting duo Daniel Collas and Sean Marquand, along with a rotating cast of friends and collaborators that included Aurelio Valle, Carol C., Jaleel Bunton, Jon Spencer, Lady Tigra, Patrick Wood, Luke Riverside, Laura Martin, Bing Ji Ling, Pier Pappalardo and Joan Tick, the Brooklyn-based psych soul act The Phenomenal Handclap Band formed in 2009 and received attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere with the release of 2012’s sophomore effort, Form and Control.

Now, it’s been some time since I’ve written about Phenomenal Handclap band, as Collas with Morgen Phalen and members of Stockholm, Sweden-based bands Dungen and The Amazing formed the cosmic jazz, jazz fusion, prog rock and psych pop-inspired act Drakkar Nowhere, who caught my attention with the release of their gorgeous, self-titled full-length debut last year. And in this iteration of The Phenomenal Handclap Band, the project’s founding member Collas is collaborating with vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Juliet Swango, who’s perhaps best known as a member of teen band The Rondelles on the double A side single “Traveler’s Prayer”/”Stepped Into the Light,” which Daptone Records imprint Magnifreeq released today — and unsurprisingly, “Traveler’s Prayer” will further cement Callas long-held reputation for a sound that draws from psych pop, psych rock, Northern soul, prog rock and krautrock, and while clearly sounding as though it were released during the era of 70s AM rock, it possesses a clean, hyper modern production sheen and a breezy, disco-like vibe.

 

 

 

 

 

Currently comprised of founding member Alex Tebeleff (vocals, synth, guitar) and newest members Matt Dowling (vocals, bass), Rick Irby (guitar) and Danny Bentley (drums), the Washington, DC-based psych rock act Paperhaus have released 5 EPs. including 2013’S LoHiLo EP, which garnered attention from NPR and the Washington Post and was supported with a two month two that included a NYC area stop. Building upon the buzz they had received, the band’s 2015 full-length debut premiered on NPR First Listen. Along with their full-length debut, the band played at that year’s SXSW, played a headlining, album release show at DC’s famed 9:30 Club and received coverage from Brooklyn VeganUSA Today, NPR’s All Songs Considered and several others.

Now, it’s been quite a while since I’ve written about the Washington, DC-based psych rock act, but the band’s latest effort, Are These The Questions That We Need To Ask? officially drops later today, and the album which was recorded and co-produced by Peter Larkin at his Alexandria, VA-based studio The Lighthouse reportedly marks a major turning point for the band, as the album’s title and material urges the listener to ask questions about their surrounding world — while focusing on our increasing reliance on technology, a craving for nature and the natural world, the return and increasing rise of authoritarian ideas and the division it creates for people, and what all of this means for human relationships. In fact, the album’s latest single “Told You What To Say” sonically features shimmering and wobbling synths paired with a strutting bass line and a soaring hook in an expansive song structure that possesses elements of psych rock, prog rock and post punk — all while reportedly pointing out that history has a way of echoing and paralleling itself. But unless we make vital connections between the past and present, we’re not only doomed to repeat the past, we’re doomed to repeat it — without ever knowing why or how to stop it.

 

 

 

 

 

New Video: The Lysergic Visuals and Sounds of Stockholm’s Marble Mammoth

Marble Mammoth is a Stockholm, Sweden-based psych rock band that features members, who have played in The Unisex and have collaborated with The MC5s Mike Davis and The Hellacopters’ and Imperial State Electric’s Nicke Anderson — and with the recent release of their self-titled EP, the band has quickly developed a reputation for a sound that meshes the bluesy power chords of Led Zeppelin with the dreamy, psychedelia of the likes of Tame Impala — although the band’s latest single “Wrecked Ship” reminds me much more of JOVM mainstays Goat and Black Sabbath as the song features some blistering guitar pyrotechnics paired with soaring organ chords and anthemic hooks, but within an expansive, twisting and turning song structure that nods at voodoo, Latin rock and psych rock, while lyrically the song evokes the anxious awareness that the end is coming — and quickly.

Directed and edited by Milja Rossi, the recently released hallucinatory video for the song features the black clad members of the band performing the song near a lake in glorious sunshine and quick cuts to volcanos erupting, explosions and other natural phenomenon shot at weird angles to evoke an abstractness and the influence of hallucinogens.