Monthly Archives: June 2009

Arrows of Love

“My hands are burning.”

Thanks to a tip from one of my favorite English imprints, Alcopop!, London’s Arrows of Love just won over a new set of ears. Without breaking the bank, you can download the band’s new EP for the mere price of an e-mail address. They’re not looking to make as much as even a penny, they simply want you to listen. As an English indie super-group of sorts, the band is composed of members from Hush The Many (Heed The Few), Kid Harpoon, and even Jamie T. You have plenty of chances to catch the group play throughout the summer if you live in town.

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Frankie and His Fingers

“Just flip that ‘charming’ switch on.”

It’s a pseudo-discovery.  It was years ago when I first stumbled upon Frankie and His Fingers – when they themselves were only about 18 years old and I even younger.  The tracks that would later become the band’s One Hell of a Skeleton EP were played in my house ad-nauseam. Only days ago did I revisit band’s page to discover the addition of four new tracks, two of which are included below.  I like Frankie and His Fingers for everything they’re not. They’re not polished, the recordings are a bit rough, and most would think the whole musical package in general could use a little tightening up.  They’d be wrong, though, because these are the very qualities that make the band inexplicably great.

more info…
Purevolume (to download 2 additional free tracks)

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the Drums

“Wake up, there’s a new kid in the town.”
If New Order wrote less about doom and gloom and cared as much about surfing and summer beach-frolicking as do Jonathan Pierce and Jacob Graham, I’d have a helluva time telling you which band I prefer more. The two Brooklyn transplants, who call themselves the Drums, have no problem genre bending, blending, and mixing the music of decades long past. Their “fascination with 50s surf culture” coupled with the inspiration drawn from bands like the Smiths and Joy Division allows for an interesting catalogue of tracks that will live on long after the summer season. The aptly titled Summertime EP hits the digital shelves on August 4th and is already available for pre-order.
(x) The Drums – Let’s Go Surfing
(x) The Drums – Best Friends
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Still Life Still

“We really need to be friends.”
With unflinching regularity, I am somehow able to overlook the endless pools of talent from Canada.  Off the top of my head, though I’m sure there’s more, I could list my Canadian favorites on one hand.  It’s starting to become a very serious character flaw.  Thus, the following band entered the fray a good time.  Still Life Still, from Ontario, just released their new Pastel EP by way of indie super-label Arts & Crafts.  The EP’s title track, posted below, as well as of yet unreleased “Neon Blue” seem to be monopolizing my time lately…
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You Animals

You Animals – “Halfway To Heartbreak”

Song of the summer contender…nevermind that the track isn’t even released yet.  Too bad you’ll have to log on and watch the video everyday for a month – which is exactly what you’ll find yourself doing after hearing the track  – until you can buy it, download it, and carry it with you wherever you go.  The UK’s You Animals will release “Halfway To Heartbreak” via Fear and Records on July 13th. The track is miles beyond infectious, but without the campy overkill that characterizes most of today’s pop radio fare. The single’s b-side is attached below and it too comes highly (highly, highly…) recommended.  Catch the band next month as they spend most of July rolling through England with a quick pit stop in Glasgow.  Check back with Fear and Records in the coming weeks to get your hands on a copy!

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Thomas J Speight

“There ain’t no use in lying to you.”
In the States, the long lost (but not forgotten!) CD single kicked the bucket years ago.  I remember the days when browsing the singles rack at Target and (R.I.P) Sam Goody was, at the very least, a regular weekly activity when I was really just a child at 9 and 10 years old.  The UK, however, has kept the much loved tradition alive.  London’s Thomas J Speight, the most recent young songwriter to knock me off my feet and land me in a spot miles away, will release his first single late summer/early fall. Speight’s obviously introspective demeanor on “This House” calls to mind the wistful, yet somehow still free and easy, tenor of Pneumonia-era Whiskeytown.  It’s just one of the those tracks the world really ought to know about.  Nothing is available to purchase at the present…but you’ll know as soon as I do.  A small smattering of London shows carries Thomas through the months of June and July until he rounds out the summer with a set of weekend gigs at Gloucestershire’s Bloom Festival in mid-August.
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All Get Out

“I do everything the hard way.”
Loud as All Get Out, as they like to say.  The young group from Charleston, SC, rather than cruising on the coattails of label owner Andy Hull of Manchester Orchestra, who himself is currently making the transition from indie-fame to mainstream, are instead riding the waves they’ve created for themselves.  With two popular EPs under their belt and, if I remember hearing correctly, a debut full length in the works and on the way, the band has made good use of Hull’s creative guardianship at Favorite Gentlemen Recordings.  The boys are booked solid through the end of July as they travel through the deep South and hit parts of the Midwest.
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