Showing posts from March, 2013

Playlist 259 - Mar 26 2013

Some more this week from the Bernard Cribbins album on Trunk Records, the wonderful ‘Gossip Calypso’. Ennio Morricone was announced to play Dublin this week, we had some classic soundtrack work from the master, paired with the great new Nancy Elizabeth single, which evokes the great man. Beautiful ambient drift from Pieter Nooten’s epic new double album, some neat electro pop from ESB feat. Perry Blake , and Polly Scattergood’s new single. New Irish music from Biggles Flys Again (great voice), O Emperor (an intriguing folk-krautrock hybrid) and some lovely lyrical surrealism a la Pavement from Wicklow’s Policy . April March & Aquaserge and Elephant were back again – can’t get enough of those tunes – and more from the great new William Tyler album of incredibly evocative guitar instrumentals, alongside a classic from The Byrds , who tap into some of the same 12-string electric guitar sources. Mar 26 2013 show w/ Ennio Morricone,Pieter Nooten,Biggles Flys Again,O Emper

V.O. – When you see red (single, Humpty Dumpty Records)

Beguiling prog pop from Brussels of all places, courtesy of Boris Gronemberger and friends, produced by a man who knows a thing or two about the genre, John McEntire. Like tabasco in a Bloody Mary, it’s smooth and subtle but with a distinct kick.

The Soft Hills – Sweet Louise (from Chromatisms, Tapete Records)

Lovely fuzzy garage rock from the Seattle four-piece, with tambourines and a major 7th middle eight. Mmm. And get it free here.

Playlist 258 - Mar 19 2013

More from the great new William Tyler album this week – he plays Ireland in May – and paired with another beautiful instrumental, along more ambient lines, from show favourite Slow Place Like Home . Belfast’s Girls Names also have a fine album out, we had some of their moody New Wave stylings. Also K-X-P , soon to visit Ireland as well, with their new version of kraut-disco; John Grant’s searching self-analysis; The Vincent(s)’ debut single; the beautiful chamber pop of Liam Singer ; the sweeping synth pop of Monocle ; new singles also from Elephant, Eleanor Friedberger and Woman’s Hour . And an archive treasure from the wonderful Trunk Records , an album of songs sung by actor Bernard Cribbins (pic), from which we heard the Lerner & Lowe classic from My Fair Lady ‘I’ve grown accustomed to her face’, not so much crooned as caressed lovingly. Mar 19 2013 show w/ William Tyler, KXP, Little Annie&Baby Dee, The Vincent(s),John Grant, Girls Name by Theundergroundofhappines

Playlist 257 - Mar 12 2013

We started this week with two sublime instrumentals. First Julia Kent , from her wonderful album Character (there’s a full review on the blog), built around solo cello; then William Tyler (pic), bracing, chiming solo guitar. Beautiful. New tunes also from Karl Bartos , ex-Kraftwerk, Olof Arnalds , Mount Moriah and Masters in France . And some great prog pop from V.O. , produced by John McEntire, which is as good a steer as you need. Also repeats for the sublime Nancy Elizabeth and the wonderfully playful psych pop of April March & Aquaserge . And Amor de Dias, Chin of Britain . Plus a glorious oldie from Fuxa . As ever, more on those around these pages. Mar 12 2013 Show w/ Julia Kent, William Tyler, Nancy Elizabeth, Masters in France, VO, Olof Arnalds+ by Theundergroundofhappiness on Mixcloud The Underground of Happiness uplifting pop music of every creed Playlist 257 Tues Mar 1

Julia Kent – Character (Leaf)

I was a huge fan of the last Julia Kent album, Green and grey , with its light, airy, almost pastoral, atmosphere, built around often unconventional cello parts looped and layered ingeniously. This, her third album, is very different, full of rich, dense textures. The sombre mood makes for quite a stark contrast with its predecessor, and although field recordings and a range of cello sounds play a part, that mood comes courtesy of long, fully-bowed deep notes at the core, with melodies strung over mainly minor keys. There’s a depth of emotion again though, which is a tribute to Kent’s sense of adventure with the instrument. ‘Transportation’ has a powerful swing and pull to it, upper register pizzicato and slapped bow parts playing around the edges of a lower main theme. ‘Flicker’ has a particular European soundtrack feel, layers of intertwining phrases combining to convey a wealth of personality, while struck piano strings (a motif that recurs throughout the album to great effect) e

April March & Aquaserge - Des tics et des tocs

This is something you don't find every day. An American singing in French, joined by some of Tame Impala and Stereolab. Elinor Blake is the American in question, aka the kookily monikered April March , who explains "French culture was something my mother presented to me as a greener pasture when I was a little girl". The outcome of this superior upbringing is an intoxicating blend of French yé-yé, with some beautiful psych pop stylings courtesy of French group Aquaserge . There's even a shadowy nod to French pop king Serge Gainsbourg in the form of a back of the room whoop, some kind of hommage to that Serge & Brigitte classic 'Bonnie & Clyde'. Anyway, it's catchy as hell and your life needs it.

Playlist 256 - Mar 5 2013

A few new tracks this week from female artists, or female-fronted bands, all of which are great. April March & Aquaserge have a great slice of French yé-yé with some psych pop thrown in; Nancy Elizabeth (pic) takes folk music thrillingly into Morricone territory; and Elephant channel doo wop via shoegaze. All round beautiful stuff. On top of that, we had three of the Choice Music Prize nominees (the Irish version of the Mercury Prize), which is announced on Thursday – Adrian Crowley, Mumblin’ Deaf Ro and windings will be well known to regular listeners, especially from last year. Also the great Melt Yourself Down (this song is now being used in a tv ad!), some lovely soulful house music from Corkman Denis Clifford , and various playful and progressive pop cuts from Shout Out Louds, Hero & Leander and Chin of Britain (that wins the prize for best band name in quite a while). Opening were September Girls (playing in Dublin Sunday), closing some peerless 90’s guitar p

Playlist 255 - Feb 26 2013

New music from two fine Cork bands this week. The Vincent(s)’ (pictured) debut single is out Friday – a little bit of Link Wray meets Nirvana Unplugged – and The Altered Hours release their Sweet Jelly Roll EP in April. The title track is a slow burn psych rock affair with a hint of MBV about it. Looking forward to hearing more from both bands. Garage rock was out in force this week actually. We also had a blast of Ty Segall , as well as The 13th Floor Elevators from the 1st Psychedelic Wave. We also had The (wonderful) National , playing Cork in June; Darren Hayman on the English Civil War; new singles from Ariel Pink, Polly Scattergood, Brendan Benson & Mikal Cronin ; the latest in the Collision/Detection series featuring Isnaj Dui . More beautiful chamber folk from Amor de Dias and some great classic soundtrack from Leonard Bernstein from the film West Side Story . Feb 26 2013 Show w/ The Altered Hours, The Vincent(s), Ty Segall, 13th Floor Elevators, MBV++ by Theun