Tag: Siouxsie and the Banshees

Comprised of Stefano Bellerba (vocals, guitar), Leonardo Mori (synth), Matteo Luciani (bass), Saverio Paiella (guitar) and Daniele Cruccolini, the members of the Terni, Italy-based post-punk quintet Japan Suicide met and bonded over their mutual love of Joy Division, The Cure, Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode — but they also cite the likes of Bauhaus, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Japan, The Damned, Interpol, Suicide, CSI, CCCP and Massimo Volume as being major influences on their sound and songwriting approach. With the release of 2015’s We Die In Such a Place, 2016’s 1978 EP, and the appearance of “This Be The Verse” on Darkitalia’Sparkles in the Dark, Vol. 4 compilation, the Italian post punk quintet have received both national and international attention as one of their homeland’s best, contemporary indie rock/post punk bands.

Building on their growing profile, Japan Suicide’s third full-length effort Santa Sangre is slated for a February 14, 2018 release through Unknown Pleasures Records, and while the album’s first single “Circle” will further cement the band’s reputation for crafting material heavily indebted to early 80s post punk, it reveals a band that has been gently expanding upon their sound with nods to shoegaze and industrial rock as the band pairs fuzzy and angular guitar chords, thundering drumming, merrily twinkling synths and a soaring hook to evoke a creeping yet uncertain dread.

 

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Live Footage: Wolf Alice Performs “Sadboy” on “Late Night with Stephen Colbert”

Currently comprised of founding members Ellie Roswell (vocals, guitar) and Jeff Oddie (guitar, vocals), with Theo Ellis (bass) and Joel Amey (drums, vocals), the London-based indie rock quartet Wolf Alice can trace they origins to when its founding members began the act back in 2010 as an acoustic act. After a period of time, the band’s founding duo decided to add more electric elements to their sound, and they recruited Roswell’s childhood friend Sadie Cleary (bass) and Oddie’s friend George Barlett (drums) to join the band. With the original lineup, the quartet released their self-titled EP, which featured singles “Every Cloud,” “Wednesday,” and “Destroy Me,” and they released a video for “Wednesday.”

2012 saw massive lineup changes for the band — Barlett broke his wrist in 2012 with Joel Amey initially joining as temporary member, who later became a permanent member. Also that year, Cleary left the band to focus on her studies, and the band recruited Theo Ellis to replace her. Despite the lineup changes, the band released “Leaving You,” which wound becoming a viral hit, as it received airplay on BBC Radio 1 and was featured in NME‘s Radar section. Building upon the buzz they received nationally, the quartet toured with Peace, and they began the following year with a session for Huw Stephens’ BBC Radio 1 show.
Since then the quartet have released two EP’s 2013’s Blush and 2014’s Creature Song and two full-length albums — 2015’s critically applauded and commercially successful My Love Is Cool, which featured the Grammy Nominated-single “Moaning Lisa Smile,” a track that peaked at #9 on Billboard‘s Alternative Songs Chart, and their sophomore effort Visions of a Life, which was released earlier this year, and as you may recall I wrote about album single “Heavenward,” a lush, shoegazer single that reminded me of A Storm in Heaven-era The Verve.

The British indie rock quartet are about to embark on a short North American tour, which will feature a December 4, 2017 date at Brooklyn Steel, but before that they made an appearance on Late Night with Stephen Colbert, where they performed the jangling and anthemic album single “Sadboy,” with a swaggering self-assuredness while finding the band gently expanding upon the sound that has won them international attention — the song still nods at A Storm in Heaven-era The Verve; however, to my ears, there’s a subtle hint at Siouxsie and the Banshees and others. 

New Video: Introducing Kiev, Ukraine-based Post Punk Act On The Wane

With the release of their 2014 full-length debut Dry, the Kiev, Ukraine-based post-punk quartet On The Wane, currently comprised of Dari Maksimova (bass, vocals), Anna Lyashok (drums, vocals), Eugene Voitov (guitar, synth), and newest member, Eli Demyanenko (drums, drum machine), received attention across their native Ukraine and elsewhere for a sound that draws from shoegaze, goth, New Wave and noise rock — with the members of the band citing Sonic Youth, The Cure, Joy Division, Pixies, Bauhaus, My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, Cocteau Twins and Ringo Deathstarr as influences on their work. 

Following a successful Ukrainian tour, the band, the quartet went into the studio and recorded a 6 track EP, Sick, which found the band’s sound drawing from the likes of Mudhoney, Fugazi and others with the effort being praised for a sound that drew from Sonic Youth, Gang of Four and The Damned among others; however, after the release of Sick, the band went through a lineup change with their newest member Demyanenko and with his addition, the Ukrainian-based post punk act added synthesizers and a drum machine to their sound. And as a result, the quartet’s sophomore effort Schism finds the band changing things up yet again — this time with the band taking on an increasingly goth-based, electronic rock sound that nods at 4AD Records, Garbage and Siouxsie and the Banshees, as you’ll hear on the album’s latest single “Sultry Song.” 

Directed by Mikhail Efimenko, the recently released video, was based on the band’s idea to create a non-complicated video showing the atmosphere of their rehearsal space/studio/workplace and to introduce the band to the world. 

This past weekend has been a very busy one for me, as I’ve taken part in a Baby Robot Media hosted Mondo.NYC panel titled “Your First PR Campaign” and I’ve managed to cover some of the festival — while squeezing in my beloved New York Yankees, who have managed to get into the American League Division Series against the Cleveland Indians. There will be more on Mondo.NYC in the future; but in the meantime, let’s get to some music, eh?

For the better part of a decade, Frankie Rose played a significant role in Brooklyn’s indie rock scene, as an original member of several critically applauded and commercially successful acts including Crystal Stilts, Dum Dum Girls, Vivian Girls and Beverly, as well as a solo artist. And interestingly enough, Rose has been considered a controversial and restlessly creative presence, frequently leaving projects, just as they were beginning to attain some measure of success. Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the course of the summer, you may recall that Rose relocated back to her birthplace of Los Angeles with the intention of establishing a new, creative and professional moment in her career; however, the experience of being down and out, and not quite knowing what to do next wound up inspiring her fourth full-length album Cage Tropical, which was co-written with Jorge Elbrecht, known for his work with Tamaryn, Gang Gang Dance, No Joy and my own personal favorite Violens. Album single “Dyson Sphere” managed to sound as though it owed a debt to 80s New Wave — in particular A Flock of Seagulls I Ran (So Far Away),” Siouxsie and The Banshees’Israel” and “Happy House,” immediately came to my mind.

Adding to a run of New Wave-inspired material, Rose is set to release a full-length cover of The Cure‘s critically applauded sophomore effort Seventeen Seconds as part of Turntable Kitchen’s Sounds Delicious vinyl covers series. The first single off Rose’s Seventeen Seconds cover album is a fairly straightforward and moody rendition of one of my favorite Cure songs “A Forest.” And if there’s one thing the Frankie Rose cover should do two things: remind contemporary listeners that a great song can truly be timeless and that The Cure should be considered one of the more important bands of the 1980s.

 

 

 

 

 

New Video: The 80s New Wave-Inspired Sounds and Visuals of Frankie Rose’s Latest Single “Dyson Sphere”

For the better part of a decade, Frankie Rose played a significant role in Brooklyn’s  indie rock scene, both as a solo artist and as an original member of critically applauded and commercially successful acts like Crystal Stilts, Dum Dum Girls, Vivian Girls and Beverly; in fact, if you’ve been covering music in this town as long as I have, you may recall that Rose was a largely considered a controversial, restlessly creative presence, frequently leaving projects, just as they were about to attain some measure of success. As the story goes, Rose relocated back to her birthplace of Los Angeles with the intention of establishing a new, creative and professional moment in her career; however, she gradually found herself running short on sleep, money and optimism.  “I moved to LA, drama ensued and I ended up on a catering truck. I was like, how can this be my life after being a touring musician and living off of music. I had really lost my way and I thought I was totally done,” the indie rock artist recalls in press notes.

During those restless nights, Rose spent her time listening to Art Bell’s paranormal-themed archives and her thoughts turned fatalistic — in the sense that she started to feel as though she wasn’t cut out for the music business, and wondering what she was going to do next. “But out of it all, I just decided to keep making music, because it is what I love and what I do — regardless of the outcome,” the indie rock artist says.

Towards the end of her 18 month stint back in Los Angeles, Rose reached out to Jorge Elbrecht, known for his work with Tamaryn, Gang Gang Dance, No Joy and my own personal favorite Violens and began sketching what eventually became the basic outline of what felt like a new album. When Rose returned back to Brooklyn, she had the realization that she had to do it on her own, and naturally it meant working with basically no budget and finding ways to record in-between days; however, Rose credits it as being incredibly useful as it allowed her to experiment with a variety of people, who helped change her creative process and songwriting as a whole. “I got a lot of people from people like Dave Harrington (Darkside), who was helpful in reconstructing the songs, adding dynamics and changing up the rhythms.”

The end result is Rose’s soon-to-be released fourth full-length album Cage Tropical, and as you’ll hear on the album’s latest single “Dyson Sphere,” the material takes on a decidedly spectral yet New Wave-inspired sound, complete with analog synths, an angular and propulsive bass line, angular guitar chords fed through delay and reverb pedals, dramatic percussion and a soaring hook paired with Rose’s ethereally crooned vocals floating over the mix. And although the song is reminiscent of A Flock of Seagulls “I Ran (So Far Away),” Siouxsie and The Banshees’ “Israel” and “Happy House,” it may be the one of the more personal and albums of Rose’s career — and while seemingly dark, there’s an underlying and subtle sense of hope; that the darkest days of one’s creative or personal life certainly aren’t forever.  “It’s all essentially based on what happened to me in Los Angeles and then a return to Brooklyn. Misery turned into something good,” Rose says of the album in press notes. “The whole record to me is a redemption record and it is the most positive one I’ve made.

“I feel like I am finally free from worrying about an outcome. I don’t care. I already lost everything. I already had the worst-case scenario. When that happens, you do become free. In the end, it’s about me rescuing myself via having this record.”

Directed by Daniel Carbone, the recently released video for “Dyson Sphere” is an incredibly 80s New Wave-inspired performance video that features the Brooklyn-based indie artist and her backing band shot in a hazy and moody shadows, complete with trippy fade outs and bursts of color, that should remind anyone who grew up in the 80s of watching warped and over-recorded VHS tape.

New Video: The Grainy 80s Influenced Sounds and Visuals of Queen of Swords’ “Rise Instead”

Aerin Fogel is a Toronto, ON-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, who may be best known for her stint as one-half of fuzz pop duo The Bitters, with Fucked Up’s, Young Guv’s and Bad Actors Records’ Ben Cook. The duo released critically applauded material through several renowned indie labels including Captured Tracks Records, Mexican Summer Records, Sacred Bones Records and Release The Bats Records, as well as festival appearances at SXSW, NXNE, and Woodsist/Captured Tracks Fest; however, Fogel’s newest recording project Queens of Swords finds Fogel specializing in sweeping and dramatic pop that aesthetically speaking nods at Siouxsie and the Banshees, PJ Harvey and others, but with huntingly ethereal melodies, as you’ll hear on her latest single off the project’s self-titled full-length debut, “Rise Instead.” 

The recently released music video for the song, was recorded and directed by Danielle Aphrodite on grainy VHS and was devised as n ode to the stages of female empowerment; but it also manages to nod at the billowing and dreamy vibe of the song. 

New Video: The 60s Psych Rock and Garage Rock Inspired Sounds and Visuals of Suspirians’ “Nocturne”

Currently comprised of Marissa Pool (vocals, guitar), Stephanie Demopulous (bass, keys) and Lisa Cameron (drums), who has played with Roky Erickson and ST37, the Austin, TX-based psych rock trio Suspirians have slowly developed a reputation for crafting material that eschew traditional verse-chorus-verse structure and shifts from section to section with arrangements that feature heavily reverbed vocals, open drumming, layers upon layers of guitar and subtle layers of synths, creating a sound that draws from an eclectic array of psych rock, punk rock and experimental rock, including Pylon, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Sonic Youth, The Stooges, Frightwig, early Butthole Surfers, Roky Erickson and The Aliens, late 70s British post-punk and others.

Between the band’s self-titled debut and the sessions which resulted in their sophomore effort Ti Bon Ange, the band went through a lineup change in which their original drummer Anna Lamphear was replaced by Cameron. And as a result, the band went through a massive and radical departure in their sound and creative process — while their self-titled debut was more of a straightforward, garage rock-leaning affair, Ti Bon Ange finds the individual members “getting lost in the songs together in a sort of epic ever dream,” Marissa Pool explains. “We did not overthink of over control anything on this record. It was all about going with the flow and following our instincts.” Interestingly enough, on a certain level that shouldn’t be surprising as the Austin-based psych rock trio’s sophomore effort’s name is derived from a Haitian voodoo term that in English translates into “little good angel” — or the part of the soul that holds one’s individuality and personal qualities, and leaves the body when sleeping so you can sleep in peace; in fact, the anthemic, mosh pit friendly “Nocturne” possesses a forceful yet enveloping sound within a song structure that feels as though it twists and turns at a willful drop of a hat. But while some may hear some elements of The Stooges and Roky Erickson, I also hear a subtle hint at The Black Angels and others, as the song has a bit of a brooding undertone.

Produced by the band’s Lisa Cameron, the video features a relatively simple concept — footage of the band playing in a small club with psychedelic imagery bursting out in front of them.

Comprised of Millie Duthie (vocals, guitar), Mitch Duce (guitar), Dan Hole (bass, vocals) and Danny Southwell, the Brighton, UK-based indie rock quartet Thyla had a big year last year, as they received quite a bit of praise from British tastemakers and opened for the Dream Wife and Luxury Death before spending the last few months of the year revising their sound and songwriting approach before writing new material, which included their first single of this year, “Ferris Wheel.” While thematically focusing on the fear of not being good enough in the eyes of those most important and those close to you, the band’s sound manages to nod at 80s post-punk acts like The Smiths and Sioxsie and the Banshees, thanks to shimmering guitar chords paired through distortion and reverb pedals, a driving rhythm, a rousingly anthemic hook, the song possesses the earnestness of (presumably) being inspired by a personal experience that’s fairly universal.

 

 

 

 

 

New Video: The Murky 80s MTV-Inspired Visuals of Second Still’s “You Two So Alike”

Over the past month or so, I’ve written a bit about the Los Angeles, CA-based post-punk trio Second Still. And as you may recall, the band, which is comprised of its founding members Ryan Walker (guitar) and Alex Hartman (bass) along with Suki San (vocals) can actually trace their origins to when Walker and Hartman met in 2007 in Los Angeles. Four years later he duo had relocated to New York and at that point, they had recorded over 100 instrumental demos, which were largely inspired by French coldwave and No Wave. While in New York, Walker and Hartman spent a significant amount of time, searching high and low for a vocalist that they felt could match their intensity and creative output — and when they met Suki San, they felt an immediate simpatico.
The trio’s first show was a party at the now-condemned McKibbin Street Lofts that was famously shut down by the police during their set’s second song. And building upon the buzz of that incident, the band recorded their debut EP, Early Forms, which was released last March as a limited edition cassette that quickly sold out. Making the most of their time, while they were living in Brooklyn, the members of the band wrote and recorded the material, which would eventually comprise their soon-to-be released, self-titled, full-length debut — and the material on the album thematically covers deeply post-modern subjects: depression, frustration, anxiety and alienation.

Relocating back to Los Angeles, the band released two singles “Walls” and “Recover,” that revealed a decided sonic departure from their previously released EP; in fact, “Recover” finds the band nodding at 80s post-punk, in particular Sixousie and the Banshees as San’s gorgeous vocals, which to my ears bear an uncanny resemblance to Sixousie Sioux’s are paired with angular and shimmering guitar chords played through reverb and delay pedal, a propulsive bass line and stark, industrial-leaning drum programming. And as a result, the song simultaneously possesses a brooding chilliness and a motorik groove. “Strangers,” the second single off the band’s debut sonically continues on a similar vein, sounding as though it drew from Siousxie and the Banshees’ “Happy House” and “Israel” but with a clean, modern production sheen and a slashing and forceful guitar solo.

Although it may arguably be one of the shorter running singles on their album as it clocks in at a little over 2 minutes, “You Two So Alike” is one of the eeriest songs they’ve released to date, as it was inspired by “an article Suki read about Brittany Maynard, a woman who decided to commit suicide after being diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, a few years ago,” and by the End of Life Clinic in The Netherlands, as the band told Buzzbands LA. Sonically speaking, it continues the same mood and tone of the album’s previously released singles as the band pairs a sleek and chilly, motorik groove, propulsive, industrial-leaning drum programming and shimmering guitar work — and while clearly drawing from 80s post-punk, the material balances slick production with a raw and visceral emotionality.

Directed by the band and Alison Littrel, the recently released video manages to be reminiscent of early 80s music videos. Shot on grainy VHS-style tape, the video features the band playing and brooding in front of projection screens, which gives the video an appropriate murky and eerie vibe.