Tag: The Strokes

New Video: Israeli-French JOVM Mainstay MAGON Releases a trippy Visual for “Aerodynamic”

Throughout the course of this past year, I’ve written quite a bit about the Israeli-born, Paris-based psych rock singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer MAGON. And with the release of Out in the Dark, MAGON quickly established a unique sound, which he has described as urban rock on psychedelics, as you would have heard on album singles like the incredibly self-aware and introspective, The Strokes-like “My Reflection,” and the David Bowie and T. Rex-like “Same House.”

Since the release of Out in the Dark, the Israeli-born, Paris-based singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer has released a couple of one-off singles that included the dreamy meditation on the passing of time “Change.” The JOVM mainstay’s latest single, the jangling “Aerodynamic” is a decidedly glam rock-inspired take on psych rock with a brooding air.

Directed by the Israeli-born, Paris-based JOVM mainstay, the recently released video features MAGON and his backing band playing in the woods — and simultaneously, we followed a lizard man, who goes through a trippy and transcendent journey through space and time with a beautiful woman.

New Video: Maltese Indie Act Beesqueeze Releases a Trippy and Summery Anthem

Beesqueeze is a Siggiewi, Malta-based duo, comprised of Kriz Zahra (guitar, bass, synth, vocals) and Chris Mallia (drums, vocals, guitar, effects) that specializes in what they’ve dubbed alterdelic (alternative + psychedelic) dance rock, influenced by The Strokes, MGMT, Tame Impala, Gorillaz and Pixies among others. And with their debut EP, 2017’s Crowd Control, the duo quickly established their unique sound, as well as a reputation for an explosive live show. 

The band is currently holed up in their small home studio working on their full-length debut, which is slated for an Autumn 2020 release. In the meantime, the Maltese duo’s latest single, the David Vella co-produced “Say You Do” is breezy and anthemic track centered around propulsive synth arpeggios, thumping kick drum, strummed acoustic guitar, a blazing guitar solo, and breathily delivered vocals. And while being a summery, dance floor friendly track that reveals the duo’s unerring knack to craft an infectious hook reminiscent of Evil Heat-era Primal Scream, the song encourages the listener to be bold and express their desires. By doing so, you may actually get what you want you want and need. 

“I do some work in a cool friendly bar and many times I get newcomers asking me to do a special drink or cocktail or something that’s not on the menu so I usually say ‘yes.’ I go head getting this [drink] together, now this always happens: I can notice one of the regulars staring at me, giving the look, like [they’re’] trying to say ,’Hey, what’s that. That’s new! I want it!’ but says nothing. So then I’m like ‘Hey due, if you want one, just say you want one, it’s okay,” the band’s Chris Mallia says of the song’s inspiration. 

“The song came together fast. We were preparing for a small show and I thought this new synth I got off a friend on the same day just for fun. Chris was on guitar going through these chords and I just plugged in the synth, and it happened like that,” Kriz Zahra says of the song’s creative process. “10 minuets later, we were listening to it on this lo-fi recording and we thought it was good. So we recorded it a few days later. I remember it was a quick and smooth process, just how we like it.” 

Directed by the members of Besqueeze, the recently released video features the band performing the song in front of bright, neon colored backgrounds and trippy effects — and as a result, the video captures the band’s energy and the song’s overall lysergic feel. 

New Video: Paris’ Morning Robots Releases a Symbolic and Animated Visual for “Moonlight”

Emerging Paris-based indie rock act Morning Robots — Romain, Victor, Jerome, Benjamin and BT — can trace their origins to a school trip to Brighton, UK: Romain, Victor and Jerome met Benjamin and BT while sharing the same room with a host family. The members of the quintet bonded over a mutual love of The Strokes, Oasis and Kasabian and others. And as the story goes, the quintet wanted to start a band as soon as they got back to France. 

When they started the band, not everyone would know how to play an instrument but eventually the stragglers picked an instrument and they all began practicing and honing their sound. Although they wrote and recorded some demos, the band can officially trace its origins back to 2012. Early 2013 saw the band playing their first live shows in the Paris area — and by the following year, they released a handful of singles including “Shiny Laughter,” and “Fall With You.” 

The band continued to hone their sound and live show with shows at some of Paris’ most renowned venues — including L’International, l’Alimentation Générale, FGO Barbara, La Clef, Bus Palladium, Le Baron, Le Truskel, and Paris Paris Club. They’ve also opened for Yungblud at Supersonic. 

The band released their debut EP, 2018’s Vincent Marie Bouvot-produced Nothing Like Tile For A Tango, which featured “Meet Me Later,” a track that found the band establishing a new sound centered around enormous, arena rock friendly hooks and reverb-drenched guitars. Morning Robots spent the next year, playing in and around Paris before eventually returning to the studio to record new material late last year with Vincent Marie Bouvot. 

The late 2019 sessions resulted in the band’s latest single “Moonlight.” Centered around  an alternating quiet verses and loud choruses with enormous power chords, the song features shimmering and reverb-drenched guitars, thunderous drumming paired with earnest and plaintive vocals in English and in French. 

The recently released video find the band continuing their ongoing animated visual collaboration with Oscar Langevin (a.k.a Dinopelo). The visual is centered around a mother and child, who are violently separated with the child eventually imprisoned. The mom sets out to get revenge and get her child back in a way that bears a resemblance to Tarantino’s Kill Bill Vol 1. and Vol. 2. But at the end, we see a lovely reunion — and a mother’s love and sacrifice for her child.  

New Video: Israeli-French Psych Rocker MAGON Releases an Animated Visual for Anthemic “Same House”

Earlier this year, I wrote about the Israeli-born, Paris-based psych rock singer/songwriter and producer MAGON. The release of “The Streets,” off his latest album Out in the Dark quickly established his unique sound, which he has described as urban rock on psychedelics. 

Album single “My Reflection” was a cocaine-fueled, glam rock-like track centered around a chugging motorik groove, angular and slashing guitars and MAGON’s ironically detached vocals. And although the track may bring The Strokes to mind, it possesses an unvarnished, post-modern self-awareness.  “‘My Reflection’ is one of the most introspective songs on the album,” MAGON wrote to me in an email. “It resumes my life up and evokes my life philosophy. it’s also one of the rare songs for which I wrote the lyrics fully before composing it.”

“Same House” continues in a similar vein as its immediate predecessor: chugging motorik grooves, buzzing and slashing guitars, and an arena rock friendly hook paired with MAGON’s ironically detached vocals — but unlike it’s predecessor, it builds up into a frenzy before closing out with a gentle fade out. And while it may be the most David Bowie and T. Rex-like singles of the albums tracks I’ve heard, the song is written about bitter and achingly personal experience.

“I wrote ‘Same House’ after breaking up with my ex. We’ve been together for 10 years and still lived in the same house after the breakup for about 6 months until I was able to move out,” the Israeli-born, French psych rock singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer says in press notes. “It was a very complicated and crucial time in my life and my music was my best friend more than ever. It was at the time that I began my solo project as Magon, and in a sense it was perfect timing because I had so much to say and needed to create a new life for myself. It’s one of my favorite songs on the album Out in the Dark because it succeeds, in my opinion, to transcend a very deep and personal story in a very light and entertaining way. It’s also pretty much sophisticated musically but feels quite smooth and easy, which is the way I like things to be.”

Directed by Amit Jakie David, the recently released video for “Same House” plays out the central story of the song: a  couple, portrayed by puppets, living together and throughout you can sense the bitterness and resentment between each other. Eventually, it explodes in a fiery conflagration — almost as expected. Certainly, if you’ve ever experienced a bitter end to a longtime relationship, the video and the song will feel familiar. 

New Video: Introducing the Motorik Groove Driven Psych Rock of Paris’ MAGON

MAGON is an Israeli-born, Paris-based psych rock singer/songwriter and producer. His latest album Out in the Dark was released last October through December Square/Differ-Ant Records. And with the release of the album’s first single “The Streets,” the Israeli-born, Paris-based artist quickly established a unique sound, which he has described as urban rock on psychedelics. 

Out in the Dark’s latest single is the decidedly cocaine fueled, glam rock-like “My Reflection.” Centered around a chugging motorik groove, angular and slashing guitars and MAGON’s ironically detached vocals, “My Reflection” may remind some listeners of The Strokes — but with an unvarnished sense post-modern self-awareness. “‘My Reflection’ is one of the most introspective songs on the album,” MAGON wrote to me in an email. “It resumes my life up and evokes my life philosophy. it’s also one o the rare songs for which I wrote the lyrics fully before composing it.” 

Shot on a grainy VHS-like film, the video which is set in a rainy European town, follows a beautiful woman as she vamps, runs, smokes and generally pisses away her time. It’s purposefully DIY — but while possessing a mischievous sense of humor: it evokes what bored, self-aware and yet cool young people do all over the world. “I shot the video one day in December in Bucharest with my girlfriend Alexa and her sister Yvonne, who are natives of the city,” MAGON explains in an email. “We used an old DV camera that my bassist Gauthier gave me, which has a great vintage look, and in post production, we really had fun grading (mainly to b&w) editing and superimposing the footage. Yvonne, who is 17 was really happy with the final result, although she was quite worried it would turn out to be shit. I would like to keep on making videos with Alexa because she’s super talented and intuitive with visual arts.” 

Over the past year or so, I’ve written quite a bit about the Newcastle, UK-born and-based singer/songwriter and guitarist Sam Fender. And as you may recall, the British singer/songwriter and guitarist has received received attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere for crafting rousingly anthemic, arena rock-like material with a broad focus on hard-hitting social issues — while also drawing from his own experiences growing up in Northeastern England.

Last year saw Fender featured on BBC Sound of 2018′s shortlist, which he promptly followed up with a sold-out headlining UK tour. Building upon the rapidly growing buzz surrounding him, Fender ended the year with the release of the Dead Boys EP, an effort that featured “That Sound,” an arena rock friendly track that featured enormous hooks, soulful vocals and a bluesy vibe that recalls The Black KeysSlavesRoyal Blood and others  — and “Play God,” an ambitious yet politically-charged song that talked about how special interests and the 1% really control the world as we know it.

This year may be a breakthrough year for the Newcastle-based singer/songwriter, guitarist and JOVM mainstay. Slated for a September 13, 2019 release through Interscope Records, Fender’s highly-anticipated full-length debut Hypersonic Missiles was recorded and produced at Fender’s self-built warehouse studio in North Shields with longtime friend, producer and collaborator Bramwell Bronte. Interestingly, the album was reportedly fueled by Fender’s long-held belief that great guitar music still has the power to change lives and influence people —  in this case, to better themselves and the world. Interestingly, Fender’s first single of the year was the rousing, Springsteen meets Modern English‘s “Melt With You”-like album title track “Hypersonic Missiles.

Additionally, Fender made his US network TV debut performing “Hypersonic Missiles” on  Jimmy Kimmel Live! and CBS This Morning‘s Saturday Sessions. He also played at this year’s SXSW before completing a headlining North American tour, which included a stop at  Rough Trade that I covered earlier this year. Building upon the momentum he’s amassed over the past 18 months or so, Fender’s latest single, The Strokes meets Springsteen-like “Will We Talk” continues a run of rousingly anthemic material that finds Fender balancing  enormous hooks with earnest yet ambitious songwriting. And much like its predecessor, the song focuses on two troubled yet star-crossed lovers, who are both crippled by self-doubt, uncertainty — but captured with a novelist’s attention to psychological detail.

Fender is currently in the middle of a lengthy world tour that includes a July 12 Hyde Park, London show with Bob Dylan and Neil Young, as well as appearances at Splendour In The Grass, his return to the States with an appearance at Lollapalooza before closing out the year with a sold out and extensive tour of the UK. A new series of North American dates to support Hypersonic Missiles are forthcoming — and if he’s playing in a town near you, you should go out and see him. In the meantime, check out the tour dates below.

Tour Dates:
 July 11 – Tynemouth Castle, North Shields SOLD OUT
July 12 – Hyde Park, London (w/ Bob Dylan + Neil Young)
 July 13 – TRNSMT Festival, Glasgow
July 19 – Splendour In The Grass, North Byron Parklands
July 23 – Corner Hotel, Melbourne
 July 24 – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
August 3 – Chicago, IL – Lollapalooza
August 10 – Boardmasters Festival, Newquay
August 16 – Summer Sonic, Tokyo
August 18 – Summer Sonic, Osaka
August 30 – Fusion Festival, Liverpool
August 31 – Electric Picnic, Laois Ireland
November 22 – Academy, Manchester SOLD OUT
November 23 – Guild of Students, Liverpool SOLD OUT
November 26 – Rock City, Nottingham SOLD OUT
November 27 – O2 Academy, Glasgow SOLD OUT
November 28 – O2 Academy, Leeds SOLD OUT
 November 30 – Dome, Brighton SOLD OUT
December 1 – O2 Academy, Bournemouth SOLD OUT
December 3 – Pavilions, Plymouth
December 4 – O2 Academy, Bristol SOLD OUT
December 5 – O2 Academy, Birmingham SOLD OUT
December 7 – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT
December 8 – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT
December 10 – O2 Academy Brixton, London SOLD OUT
December 11 – O2 Academy Brixton, London
December 13 – Great Hall, Cardiff SOLD OUT
December 16 – Dublin, Olympia SOLD OUT
December 17 – Ulster Hall, Belfast SOLD OUT
December 19 – O2 Academy, Sheffield SOLD OUT
December 21 – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT
December 22 – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT

New Video: Introducing the Garage Rock Sounds of Up-and-Coming Californian Act Clean Spill

Comprised of Pat Curren (vocals, guitar), Charlie Fawcett (drums), Cameron Crabtree (guitar) and Geoff Shea (bass), the Santa Monica, CA-based indie rock quintet Clean Spill can take their origins to when Curren met Fawcett when they were ten year olds participating in a local surfing competition. Curren met Crabree while in high school and Shea, was a local barber, who was into the same music as the rest of the band’s members. As Crabtree recalls, “I decided to get a haircut from him and talk to him over the haircut about [playing with us]. If he would have farmed the haircut, we wouldn’t have given him the position. But it was a great haircut, so it worked out.”

Back in 2014 Fawcett leveraged some connections at surf company Hurley to assist the members of the band with studio time to record an album worth of demos that they dubbed Dear, Anger — and interestingly enough, what was initially meant to be a jam session quickly became their first professionally engineered and mixed EP, 2015’s XO, an effort that found the band’s sound and aesthetic centered around surfing and boogie boarding culture; however, as they played more shows, including playing with Kitten and touring France with Betty the Shark, which featured Curren’s half sister, the up-and-coming band discovered themselves, while realizing a desire to push their sound and approach towards the garage rock-inspired sounds of early period The Strokes and Arctic Monkeys, as well as The Growlers and The Allah Las. Simultaneously, the band was picking up lessons and advice from their tour mates abut the gear they needed to make the sound they wanted, as well as the hustle they needed to make a name for themselves. “All these artists were so hard working, knew exactly what it took for sound,” Crabtree explains in press notes. “We didn’t really know much about music gear in general. We’ve played with such a wide variety of bands, we gained such a unique perspective on fans of music, too, in that it was very rewarding to see that people still liked rock music in general.”

After collaborating with a series of different producers, their manager hooked them up with producer Hanni El Khatib. And as the story goes, back in 2016, the members of the band entered Jonny Bell’s Jazzcats Studio with the intention of recording a new single, and were instantly taken by the amount and variety of vintage gear in the studio. Experimenting with gear they never dreamt of using, and guided by El Khatib and Bell. the band began refining and honing the sound that they felt they were mean tot have. “Hanni’s style has a lot of radical, outrageous noise,” Pat Curren says in press notes. “We went a little bit down that way.” Throughout the recording sessions, the band wanted their recorded sound to hew close to their live sound, so they recorded the material live to tape, which gives the material a “you-are-there-in-the-room” immediacy. The end result became their soon-to-be-released EP Nothing’s on My Mind, an effort that features “Rolling,” a song that Curren and Crabtree wrote several years before — with a slightly different, more upbeat arrangement centered around shimmering guitar chords and a propulsive backbeat; but ironically, the song’s emotional center is the heartbreak over the confusing and bitter ending of a romantic relationship. Sonically, the song manages to be anachronistic — it’s indebted to the 60s, the 00s and this decade simultaneously, and in a way that brings Raccoon Fighter and others to mind.

Once they finished the EP, the band began to tour to support it until Shea broke his arm, which slowed down the momentum they had built up and without a record and a tour, they were in a hiatus; however, they decided to take control of their own destiny and they will be self-releasing the EP two years after its completion. “I think this will actually be the start of us hustling,” Crabtree says, noting the band has written multiple albums worth of music in the downtime. “Because we went through all that, we learned so much. Once this comes out we’re going to be on fire. Recording, shows — everything.”

The recently released video follows a young, extremely Californian couple that features the band’s frontman in a series of flashbacks — first when they’re adorable and through a series of bitter fighting, with footage of the band performing the song in a prototypical Californian background split the band brooding and goofing off throughout, creating a fitting balance between the heartache and breezy vibes within the song. 

New Video: Introducing the Anthemic Guitar Pop of Castlecomer

Featuring Bede (pronounced BEEd) (vocals), Tommy (guitar), Neely (keys), Joe (bass) and Patch (drums), the Sydney, Australia-born, Stateside-based members of up-and-coming indie rock quintet Castlecomer are composed of four cousins and a close childhood friend, who began playing live shows when they were teens. And as the story goes, they derived their band name from a plaque mounted outside their grandfather’s house, which they later found out also referenced the Irish village that their grandfather’s family had emigrated from.  Interestingly, the quintet quickly exploded into the national and international scene with the release of their smash hit single “Fire Alarm,” an anthemic single that amassed over six million streams while drawing comparisons to The Strokes and Daft Punk and receiving praise from Rolling Stone Australia. With a rapidly growing profile, that included highly praised SXSW appearance last year, Concord Records signed the band — and taking a massive leap of faith, the Australian-born members of the band relocated to the States to make a name for themselves. 

The band’s forthcoming Adrian Breakspear and Jean-Paul Fung co-produced, self-titled, full-length debut is slated for an October 5, 2018 release and the album reportedly finds the band pairing old school rock ‘n’ roll abandon with meticulous pop craftsmanship; in fact, the album’s upbeat lead single “All of the Noise” is centered around enormous and rousingly anthemic hooks, shimmering guitar chords and earnest, larger than life emotionality — and in some way, the single recalls The Smiths, The Strokes and others. 

The recently released, cinematically shot video features the members of Castlecomer performing the song in a sunlit, abandoned, graffiti covered church, and as they’re performing, two adorable little black kids, who have a sibling-like closeness run around, roughhouse and just have a genuine childlike joy play outside the church, and discover the band playing the song.