Friday, 11 July 2014

Outward - Note Passers

Kentucky's Corey Philpot is an emerging talent whose genre-juggling soundscapes are causing ripples on both sides of the Atlantic. Recording under the pseudonym of Outward, Philpot has already produced one self-titled EP (2013's The King's Ascension) and is attracting significant label interest as he puts the finishing touches to a first full-length album, Reverie Remedy; scheduled for release later in the year.

A solo artist in the truest sense of the word, all Outward recordings to date have been mixed, mastered and produced single-handedly. Arguably, it's this lack of outside interference which has allowed Philpot's creativity to flourish as he segues elements of synth-pop with darkwave, shoegaze and warped electronica.

A sample track, Note Passers, is featured below; meanwhile you can learn more about Outward by visiting the official artist website, or Bandcamp to sample that debut EP in full.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Sounds of Sputnik - New Born

Sounds of Sputnik is the brainchild of Roma Kalitkin, a solo artist previously known for his work with Sputnik-Vostok and Berlin-Bombay.
Wielding influences as diverse as Hammock and Jesu, Kalitkin has worked with a distinguished array of collaborators to produce Sound of Sputnik's debut LP, New Born. Featuring drum work from Graham Bonner (Swervedriver/Brian Jonestown Massacre) and remixes from the likes of Malcolm Holmes (OMD) and Fran Ashcroft (Damon Albarn), New Born is an ambitious project and an evident labour of love.

Significantly, a key ally in the creative process were Ukrainian shoegazers, Ummagma. Acknowledged by both songwriting and production credits, New Born boasts the now-familiar vocals of Shauna McLarnon as well as the studio wizardry of partner-in-crime Alexander Kretov. The end result is a euphoric mix of jubilant dream pop and elegant electronica.

Whilst New Born is released across digital platforms on August 25th, those of us who prefer a physical format will need to be quick to ensure their copy. A limited run of CDs is planned, but preordering before July 15th is essential to guarantee a pressing.

Like what you hear? Then show some love and preorder via Bandcamp, here.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Slowness - How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain

Last month saw the welcome return of San Francisco four-piece, Slowness. The group's second LP How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain features studio credits for Monte Vallier (best known for production work with The Soft Moon & Weekend) and Kramer (Low & Galaxie 500) and sees a more conceptual approach to record making with the album split between a clutch of warmly crafted pop songs and a largely experimental suite of untitled tracks that evolve from the same psychedelic raga. 

Opening with the cosmic folk of Mountain, How To Keep From Falling... showcases the neo-60s shimmer that's come to define the work of founder members Julie Lynn and Geoffrey Scott. It's a template that works exquisitely and one typified by the melodious jangle of Division and the brilliant motorik daydream of Illuminate.

But not content with an orthodox opening trilogy, it's at this point that Slowness move into more explorative territory. Using the sunshine groove of Anon, Part I as a launch pad, the band loop a serene chant over infectious bass hooks to deliver a four minute trip of languid psych funk. Hot on its heels comes Part II, a sumptuous cut of otherworldly shoegaze, recalling Souvlaki era Slowdive; whilst the third and final quarters weave strands of hypnotic guitar into an intoxicating, brooding climax.

Happily, all four parts are reunited for album closer Anon (A Requiem in Four Parts), which segues its constituent quartet into an epic, eighteen-minute opus.

How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain is available for download from Bandcamp. The band also has a presence on Facebook and an official website.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

The History of Colour TV - Split Blood

The last time The History of Colour TV appeared on these pages they were topping the bill in Nugazer's end-of-year album list.

Fast-forward three months and Berlin's noisiest offspring are back with a brand new single and another dose of crackling synthgaze.

Split Blood is the band's first release since Saint Marie gave Emerald Cures Chic Ills a physical release in early 2013 and builds on that momentum as scuffed guitars tear holes in measured synth riffs and bursts of tremolo buffer verses like warped punctuation. It's a notable return to form and a clear statement of intent for 2014.

Split Blood is backed by a brace of remixes; the first from label-mates Bloody Knives who offer a bruising breakbeat imprint, and the second from home-town collaborators E_S_D, whose skewed percussion blurs into melting drone.

Split Blood is out today on Saint Marie Records as a limited one-sided 7" or digital download.