Alexander Teller – ‘The Ritual’

Alexander Teller UK 2014

Alexander Teller is the latest project from multi-instrumentalist Alex Wells, who featured a number of times in the past under his former guise of Twin Brother.

Alexander Teller is more of an evolution of sounds than a clean break from the past. It feels like a natural progression of an artist. The new material is still, broadly speaking, ‘indie-rock’ but is however, less brash, a little bit slicker and sees the addition of some ear pleasing synths and frazzled electronics. In saying all that, there are many continuities too. What previously earmarked Wells as an exciting proposition remains an intrinsic part of his music; namely, the excellent songwriting and his recognizable voice – his powerful, deep, dark brogue endeavours to raise his lyrics to pride of place. The new guise seems to be fitting well as ‘The Ritual’ is testament to; a magnificent track and the highlight of an ever increasing batch of new tracks. Pretty sure this won’t be the only time to be hearing from Alexander Teller.

You can check out ‘The Ritual’ below and there is plenty more where that came from on his Soundcloud.

Introducing: Castle

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Man, you come right out of a comic book,” a voice says in the closing seconds of Castle‘s debut LP, Gasface, and it’s a pretty apt description. The North Carolina MC/producer keeps the back story to a minimum, allowing for a personality to develop through his music, leaving us with a mysterious and interesting enigma on our hands. 

Castle brings frank observations, commentary and a cheeky sense of humour as his thoughtfully crafted clever rhymes, carefully carve through his hard hitting, dense beats. Through his eyes the world is dystopian, twisted, and dark; rapping about failed relationships, lost loved ones, toil and struggle, dead-end jobs and working minimum wage. The music is often more bright and bouncy than the lyrical content would suggest, combined with Castle’s cheeky and quick wit, it eases the deliver of his writing and message. Castle and his comic book-esque alter-ego excel on debut LP, Gasface; it’s got style, substance, slick production and real meaningful lyricism and continues to reward with every listen, unraveling with deeper layers of meaning.

You can check out some choice cuts from Gasface below or, if they are to you’re liking, you can buy/stream it here

 

(Video) Malachai – ‘I Deserve To No’

Malachai - I Deserve To No

Bristol duo Malachai have announced news this week of a new album entitled, Beyond Ugly, set for release on March 31st.

The forthcoming LP serves as a closing chapter to the ‘Ugly’ triptych, an unplanned trilogy of albums and predated by the excellent Ugly Side of Love (2010) and Return to the Ugly Side (2011). Accompanying this news is ‘I Deserve To No’, the first track from the album to emerge. As far as tasters go, there’s no major surprises. It is a psyched out belter of a track, featuring a signature sonic brew of psychedelics and trip-hop, fused with some Asian inspired sounds. Malachai’s music has always exhibited a notable rawness and rasp, even so, ‘I Deserve To No’ goes one step further. A passionate anti-war message permeates the lyrical content with a relentless anger to the delivery, administered in a raspy sort of reggae style by Gee Ealey. An absolute belter as usual from Malachai. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for the third and possibly, final album (hopefully not).

Check ‘I Deserve To No’ and it’s psyched-out video for yourself below. Beyond Ugly is released on March 31st through Domino imprint Double Six.

BarryGruff Presents #17: Padraig McCauley + Rory Hughes :: Friday, January 31st :: Flanagan’s, Newbridge

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So, it’s been a while but were back in Flanagan’s to rip it up with ‘BarryGruff Presents’ #17 on Friday, January 31st. We’ve got the superbly talented duo of Padraig McCauley (The P Affection/Disconcerting P) and Rory Hughes performing on the night.

It’s sure to be another great night, so come along and enjoy the music. It’s FREE in as usual & kicks off at 9:30 pm. [RSVP]

:: Padraig McCauley ::

Padraig McCauley of The P Affection/Disconcerting P is no stranger to a BarryGruff show and should need little introduction. McCauley is a superb songwriter, singer and performer, if somewhat under-appreciated by many. This is in fact his fifth, yes fifth, BarryGruff appearance and while that might be some sort of record, it is a rare chance to see him play a solo set filled with tracks new and old, from a rather extensive body of work.  

:: Rory Hughes ::

Rory Hughes is a young musician from Dublin. He writes folk and blues tunes. Tunes that are good with a deep-rooted storytelling style. While some of the records, done himself with basic equipment, are rough and don’t do the songs full justice. However, if ‘Woe Is Me’ doesn’t stir something inside you, well, there might be something wrong with you.

The Statics – ‘Hit & Miss’

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The Statics have been a firm favourite around these parts for quite sometime now. Saying that, the Dublin four-piece enhanced their reputation both here, and further a field, with their excellent Hidden Pigeon EP, and single ‘Alone’ last year.

The Statics’ latest single, and second taken from the aforementioned EP, ‘Hit & Miss’ is a touch slower and lyrically more bittersweet and emotive, than their signature indie-pop-jangle. Just a ‘touch’ mind, as it still bobs along bouncily to an effortlessly infectious rhythm and vocal harmonies. Utterly buoyant, utterly brilliant and seemingly effortless indie-pop magic. Hopefully by the time 2014 rings to a close, we shall have heard much, much more from The Statics.

‘Hit & Miss’ is available as a free download via bandcamp from Friday, January 31st. You catch them live with The Mighty Stef in Whelans on January 31st and at Phantom Presents in Sweeneys February 5th.

Introducing: Sen Segur

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Sen Segur are quite the pop music recycling plant. These Welsh psych-rock wonders – Benjamin Ellis, Sior Amor, Dafydd Evans & Gethin Davies – melt down bit ‘n pieces from past decades of the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s & ’90s, and press it all into something new and rather exciting.

Performing in both Welsh and English, the four-piece already have a number of releases under their belt, constituting to a fun and supremely engaging collection of modern psych-pop. Sen Segur’s own reserved dreamworld of odd ball wizardry is one of psychedelic playfulness, splotches of spaced out throwbacks and straight-up riffs which spills over into our dimension to produce lovely, soft and dizzying psych pop songs. When they find their groove, as they do with their latest singles ‘Love Zebra’ & ‘Get On Up (And Get Back Down)’, it is a blissfully enjoyable experience. Sen Segur have happened upon a sound sparkling with enough ingenuity and charm, to make the past seem like an undiscovered country, well worth taking a trip to. Oh yes. This is great stuff indeed.

All aboard for the wondrous and imaginative world of Sen Segur? You can listen to and download some choice cuts below. 

Doxy – ‘Shoulder High In Gibberish’

Doxy EP Cover

Doxy is the new name for Policy, a four-piece from Kilcoole, Co Wicklow, who featured on here with the release their self-titled debut EP last year.

Often a name change coincides with some sort of musical change of direction but with Doxy, apart from the name, added refinement and marginally less rough around the edges; it’s much the same as before, which is no bad thing by any stretch of the imagination. The re-brand has coincided with new EP, Shoulder High In Gibberish, which retains that ’80s British indie/post-punk inspired sound. Their latest EP, like it’s predecessor, is probably best summed up as a bit indie, a bit post-punk, a bit alternative rock and a bit rough around the edges; all filled with charm, catchy melodies and smart, attuned lyrics. Name changes aside, it’s great to hear from this foursome again, who are a welcome addition to any music collection regardless of the guise they choose to work under.

You can check out ‘Gibberish’ & ‘No Kissing’ below and if they are to your liking, you can head over to bandcamp, ‘name your price’ and download Shoulder High In Gibberish in it’s entirety. 

Subaltern – ‘Black Cat’

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Subaltern are Irish duo, Alex Lawes & Sean Merrigan, who have been making electronic music together for a few years now. 

So far the duo’s journey has seen them play support for Simian Mobile Disco, Felix Martin of Hot Chip and White Collar Boy. Yet in saying that, their back catologue is rather less than extensive, most likely due to a self confessed preference for analogue gear and “doing everything the long way around”. Enough digression. If the duo’s latest track ‘Black Cat’ is anything to go by, they’re on the right path.  ‘Black Cat’ is a whopper 8 minutes plus of mesmerizing, synthesizer-driven dance, not wholly dissimilar to the aforementioned Simian Mobile Disco. The track has been getting repeated attention the past few weeks, it’s absolutely immense. Certainly interested to hear more from Subaltern in the future and no matter how long the wait, if they keep to this level of quality, these two lads can take all the time they like.

You can give ‘Black Cat’ the once over below, and download it for free too. Sounds chaps indeed.

Introducing: Radstewart

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Radstewart are a puntastic four-piece – Chris, Jac, Dylan and Calvin –  from Cardiff (or near Cardiff at least).

Their’s is a wonky and wonderful, ramshackled lo-fi indie adventure, with clever songwriting, often laced with dry-witted lyrics. Radstewart’s sound is something approaching a mixture of Pavement with a touch of Parquet Courts and Pinkerton era Weezer, although one can imagine they’re probably sick to the back teeth of such comparisons. Regardless, it’s not bad company to be in with the latter particularly noticeable on ‘Arabesque Bedouin’. While there’s no doubting many bands have attempted a similar formula with the outcomes varying from the inspired to the woeful. Radstewart have however, got it spot on and found a neat sound, a perfect place between being too tight or too sloppy. Radstewart provide us with some lo-fi indie worthy of a furore and to rejoice in. In short, this stuff is so, so good. 

There are a few choice selections below. If they tickle your fancy, you can ‘name your price’ and download their Whig Crooks & Beer Swindlers EP now, from bandcamp.

(Video) The Dead Heavys – ‘The New Age of Innocence’

Since their formation in late 2012, The Dead Heavys have established themselves as one of the brightest Irish indie acts to emerge in recent times.

2013 was a good year all round for the Waterford band with the highlights being; a sold out show in Dublin’s The Village and a slew of festival appearances, including a superlative Electric Picnic performance. The Dead Heavys will be looking to make further waves in 2014 and having kicked off the new year with a brand new single, ‘The New Age of Innocence’, they appear to be doing just that. They’ve certainly not lost any of their characteristic sheen, the new track is big, bright and upbeat, with a sparkling disco inspired kind of groove. Not to mention it’s super catchy and that groove is oh so utterly infectious. Hopefully another productive year for The Dead Heavys is beckoning. For now, you can check ‘The New Age of Innocence’, and it’s sleek Matthew Reilly  & Colm Williamson produced video above.

The single’s out on January 31st & you can pre-order it from iTunes now. The Dead Heavys will celebrate the single’s release with a show in Twisted Pepper, Dublin on Saturday, February 1st (details here). 

The Barry Massive – ‘Wicked Safe’

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Very little information is to be found about The Barry Massive. About all that is known for sure is, this group of noise makers are from Wales, somewhere, possibly Barry but who knows?

What we can deduce from their debut single ‘Wicked Safe’ however, is they have got quite a knack for sharp, snappy lyrics and hammering out a pulse-raising punk rock racket. Clocking in at a pretty lightweight 1 minute 50 seconds, it’s all over rather quickly. Saying that, it’s relative diminutiveness does nothing to hamper this track’s appeal, ‘Wicked Safe’ is a short, sharp blast of punk rock. Hopefully there’s more to come from The Barry Massive and next time we encounter them, information is somewhat less scant.

You can make your own mind up on ‘Wicked Safe’, and check out The Barry Massive’s homemade video as well. 

 

Milan Jay – ‘How Well Do You Remember Dying’

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Galway duo John Millane and Joseph Kenny aka Milan Jay, have established a pretty reputable name for themselves with a steady stream of top notch singles in the past few years.

True to form, toward the tail end of last year, Milan Jay unveiled another fine single ‘How Well Do You Remember Dying?’. Driven by a heavy, filthy and distorted bassline, my oh my, this one’s got plenty of oomph! Along with the single’s release comes news that it’s the first to be taken from a forthcoming debut album, which they’re still working on and is due later this year. To say their singles to date have been eclectic would be an understatement, so it’s going to interesting to see what will accompany ‘How Well Do You Remember Dying?’ on the album, and to see how it all pans out together. The album is probably still a while away but till that time arrives we’ve got ‘How Well Do You Remember Dying’ to occupy us.

Stream ‘How Well Do You Remember Dying’  below or purchase it from all the usual digital haunts.