Tag Archives: review

Review: MYPET – Reflex EP

14 Aug


A few weeks ago we fell head over heels for Brighton-based Us Baby Bear Bones and their glacial electronica. LA duo MYPET is sculpted from a similar ice block but one that has been seeped in a different kind of darkness, shadows cast not by the macabre but by hitherto unknown creatures. Great mythological beasts from a time long since forgotten that have been frozen for centuries and just recently been thawed out and unleashed on the world.

Comprising bold and compelling rhythms, glitchy electronica and lyrics that are delivered with (bordering on maniacal) relish by singer Amy, MYPET have a sound that feels tribal and animalistic in places. It is exciting, vibrant and full of life. Sinewy electro noodles wind their way around grand, cacophonic beats as vocals rise up, like an arm bursting forth from the grave, seeking liberty from its earthen prison. An arm attached to a magical being that will bring forth the devastation of the world, bathing it in a vast, all encompassing light. It is an eruption of sound that will sweep away all who stands before it.

The high points on their debut EP, Reflex, are numerous and varied. There’s the old Commodore 64 shoot ‘em up style sounds of “Pays To Know”, the skittish and chilling tone of “Bodysnatcher” and the way “Move It Or Lose It” embraces even more glitchiness as it undulates and cavorts salaciously, just to name a few, Each track has three or four moments on their own though and each has an addictive pulse at its core. A tempo that is so hypnotic, beats so compulsive that you will find yourself twitching and moving involuntarily, whenever you hear it, wherever you hear it. Even on a crowded train.

The ‘Reflex’ EP is out now and available on a ‘pay what you like’ deal from the MYPET bandcamp site.

Stalk MYPET: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Bandcamp

Review: Rhye – Woman

4 Mar

Rhye - Woman

Thirteen short months have passed since Rhye released their debut EP, Open. Since then there have been three videos, one further EP, an abundance of speculation and a legion of bewitched listeners. Today the now-not-so-secretive duo releases their debut album and while it hasn’t taken them long, it feels like we have been waiting for ages.

Singles “Open” and “The Fall” offer a warm and familiar beginning (we can’t hear “The Fall” without wanting to dance like the opening to the video) but there is no need to be eased in gently. Across its ten tracks, Woman caresses and soothes our mind with its smooth R’n’B flavours and sensual orchestral arrangements. Subtle electronic grooves, such as those found on “Last Dance” melt alongside the late night sexiness of tracks like “3 Days”.

In fact “3 Days” is more like one romantic evening in musical form; the cascading harp strings is your lights down low, drinks and meal moments, before the beat gradually and delicately sexes it up for some smoochy dancing and, well you know the rest.

Woman is beautiful but in an understated fashion. It is unquestionably sexy but not overtly so or brash. Mike Milosh’s silky androgynous vocals are equal parts haunting and beautiful. He sings with a breathy melancholy (“One Of Those Summer Days”) and a swoonsome sensuality. The songs are rich and smooth like a vintage red wine in the company of good friends. Robin Hannibal’s arrangements are deft, delicate and subtle, awash with a languid sophistication, offering glimpses into the intimacy of love, be it full and joyous or pained, private and profound.

It is an ode to love and one that will no doubt be sound-tracking a fair amount of it in the months to come as well.

Woman is out now on Polydor and available digitally or on CD and Vinyl.

Stalk Rhye: Website / Facebook / Twitter / SoundCloud

2013 Preview: Listen Out For – Seasfire

3 Dec


In our 10 previous Listen Out For posts so far, we have spoken about the varying busyness or not of the acts we have featured. Some have been quiet release wise, focusing on gigs and studio time while others have put a lot of tracks out and gathered radio play and blog support. Seasfire haven’t chosen one or the other; they have been doing it all.

The band itself, comprised of four like-minded gents from Bristol, has only been around for just over a year so to have crammed in so much in such a short period of time is impressive. There have been singles, videos, blog love and gigs a-plenty including a slot at the Guardian’s New Band of the Day Live and a number of support slots on tours (they are currently on tour with Bastille). In the last few weeks the excitement level has hit 11 for the band as “We Will Wake” rocketed to the top of the Hype Machine chart, they recorded a session for Radio 1 and today, they release the We Will Wake EP.

As you’d expect, it is full of atmospheric melodies, and dark glitch electronics. Josh Thorn’s vocals are whisper like they are so soft, adding another haunting layer to the sound. There’s something a little new here as well, be it a further evolution of the band or wider influences seeping through. Their live performances offer a slightly rockier edge than you’d expect and such elements are now making their way into the studio. “You Won’t Be” for example features some fairly angular guitar sounds butting up against the smooth electronic polish. “Human Sacrifice” too, an early Seasfire demo that has been re-produced and tarted-up (technical term) for this EP, is rougher around the edges than perhaps we are used to. There’s even a little bit of Foals-esque funky math-rock creeping into “How Do You Sleep”. It’s good to hear.

The band clearly aren’t prepared to rest on their laurels and keep producing the same song time after time, nor are they stupid enough to jettison what has fast become their trademark sound. On We Will Wake, the blend is spot on not only does it show Seasfire are capable of living up to the hype, it bodes really well for what promises to be a pretty big year for the guys.

The We Will Wake EP is out today via Cheap Thrills.

Stalk Seasfire: Tumblr / SoundCloud / Facebook / Twitter

Read More: Listen: Seasfire – “We Will Wake” / Watch: Seasfire – “Heartbeat”

In Review: Arrange & Ricky Eat Acid – Sketches

26 Sep

As Robert Burns wrote many a year ago, “The best laid schemes of mice and men. Go often awry”, though they do not always, as he posited, “leave us nothing but grief and pain”. Certainly, the 2011 plan of Sam Ray (Ricky Eat Acid) and Malcolm Lacey (Arrange) to record an album together not coming to pass is disappointing, but that disappointment is tempered immeasurably by the duo’s newly released collaborative EP, Sketches.

During the recording process, technology failed and they had to put the project on hold indefinitely. Luckily for us, four tracks had been completed and a year later the pair have decided to release them separately rather than hold them for an album that may never materialise. Luckily for us as these four tracks of ambient melancholy are simply breathtaking.

The duo shared instrumentation and mixing with Sam taking responsibility for the majority of the production and this has no doubt helped give it such coherence and completeness. Often collaborations can feel slightly disjointed, that the balance is off, not on Sketches. It is so complete, so coherent, that you would swear they had been making music together in this form for eternity, it goes without saying that we hope they make more.

Lacey’s vocals have always had an otherworldly quality to them and here they rest atop each track like low-lying haze across the countryside early one autumn morning. Combined with the often glacial synths and percussion that somehow manages to be both fragile and sharp at once, the result is an EP that is consistently beautiful, haunting at times, but always beautiful. If you ever needed an antidote to the hustle and bustle of everyday life, this is it. It’s ‘close your eyes and let the sounds take you places’ music. Music you don’t just listen to but experience, let it float around you like a dream and carry you off into your imagination, you may never want to come back.

Sketches is out now on a name your own price deal from the bandcamp pages of both Arrange and Ricky Eat Acid

Review: Gigamesh – Gigamesh EP

5 Oct

Known for providing killer remixes of artists as diverse as Radiohead (“Everything In Its Right Place”), Mike Posner (“Cooler Than Me”) and Dee Lite (“Groove Is In The Heart”, naturally), dance music producer, Gigamesh, has broken out the flared white suit for a debut EP so embracing disco, it practically bleeds glitterballs.

1. “When You’re Dancing (Ft. Induce)”
2. “Red Light (Ft. Amanda Love)”
3. “It’s So Intense”
4. “People (Ft. Nicole Godiva)”

Dance music should make you want to dance. It’s not rocket science but a significant proportion of alleged dance music these days initiates no urge to even tap one’s feet; let alone cut mad shapes on the dance floor until almost every ounce of energy has left your being. Thankfully, Gigamesh’s eponymous debut EP falls very much in the latter category.

There is no point beating around the bush, these four tracks ooze funkiness. Each one is infused with a feeling of familiarity that makes it all the more simple to get up and get down. There are synths, guitars and even horns blasting out into your very essence, infecting you with the rhythm. Lead track, “When You’re Dancing”, in particular, is so unashamedly groovy that it doesn’t so much command you to move as hold a diamante encrusted handgun to the head of your loved ones, finger on the trigger daring you not to dance. It’s ok though, you won’t be able to say no.

Word to the wise, clear a big space before listening to this, you’ll need the room. Oh, and it’s ok, no-one can really do the robot properly, you look fine.

The Gigamesh EP will be available via Our Label International on 18 October and he will be performing live on the following dates.

7: Miami, FL. Arkadia
8: Minneapolis, MN. First Ave – Too Much Love
29: Minneapolis, MN. Kitty Cat Klub – Record Release Show

4: Toronto, ON. The Gladstone
5: New York, NY. Juliet Supperclub
18: Vancouver, BC. Post Modern