Overlooked Classics: Babes In Toyland- Spanking Machine

Everybody cites Hole as fine purveyors of pure feminine rage, and rightly so, but for me, Babes In Toyland did it better, and with more eloquent ferocity. I first heard Dust Cake Boy where else but on John Peel’s peerless late night radio show on Radio 1. His son Tom Ravenscroft recently spoke on 6MusicContinue reading “Overlooked Classics: Babes In Toyland- Spanking Machine”

Album Review: Speedy Wunderground Vol 5

The legendary label is nearly a decade young, believe it or not. Dan Carey, Alexis Smith and Pierre Hall’s baby just keeps going from strength to strength, as evinced by their latest compilation. From Lazarus Kane’s opener Narcissus, a kind of hyper- caffeinated Talking Heads meets Hot Chip groove, through to The Lounge Society’s broodyContinue reading “Album Review: Speedy Wunderground Vol 5”

Garlands Is 40

More people seem familiar with later work from Cocteau Twins but their debut album Garlands is still beautiful. Having just turned forty, I thought this record was worth a reappraisal. Featuring the original lineup of Liz Fraser, Robin Guthrie and Will Heggie, the original sound was dark, dense and as tight as a boa constrictor.Continue reading “Garlands Is 40”

Album Review: Todo Muere

Be still, my goth heart. This compilation from Sacred Bones is the best of experimental, psych, drone and noise music. It’s a drop of the dark stuff. Boris, the Japanese noise legends do a slinky take on Jim Jarmusch’s Squrl from Only Lovers Left Alive, and like the titular vampires Adam and Eve, it’s faithfulContinue reading “Album Review: Todo Muere”

Album Review: Sound Of Ceres-Emerald Sea

A unique audio visual collaboration between enigmatic NY musician K and legendary performance artist Marina Abramovic, this album falls between the cosmic experimentation of Broadcast and sci-fi emulating sixties production of Joe Meek. Even the artwork points to what to expect: a kitsch image with K looking like a Puckish figure. It suits the symphonicContinue reading “Album Review: Sound Of Ceres-Emerald Sea”

OK Computer Is 25

An unexpected alarm call. To be better. To try harder. To push further. Pre- mobile phones; smart devices, stupider voices. To rail against complacency, the government and mass consumption. Do you trust your leaders? The sleeping leading the half-asleep. Choices, barcodes, receipts. A graveyard of technology, rapid fire jump cuts. A need for something simpler,Continue reading “OK Computer Is 25”

Album Review: Tess Parks- And Those Who Were Seen Dancing

This is a strange one. Tess Parks, the Canadian singer- songwriter who recently collaborated with Anton Newcombe from Brian Jonestown Massacre, is clearly steeped in retro influences, most notably the Paisley Underground and post- PU outfits like Mazzy Star, as well as the original bands who influenced them like The Seeds and West Coast PopContinue reading “Album Review: Tess Parks- And Those Who Were Seen Dancing”

Album Review: Hatchie- Giving The World Away

Harriette Pilbeam is the singer- songwriter behind Hatchie. This new release is effervescent dream pop, confident sounding, featherlight but with a little bittersweetness. ‘Lights On’ and ‘The Key’ have Cocteau Twins in the shimmering, chiming sound, while 80s and 90s jukebox favourites like Depeche Mode, New Order and St Etienne loom large, in the bigContinue reading “Album Review: Hatchie- Giving The World Away”

Just Step Sideways: My Bloody Valentine – Isn’t Anything

Isn’t Anything is a game changer. My Bloody Valentine had started out as a kind of pale Cramps type, floundering in attempts at slinky garage. It was when vocalist Dave Conway left, replaced by Bilinda Butcher, that things really started to happen. There had always been a swooning, dreamy quality to tracks like Strawberry Wine,Continue reading “Just Step Sideways: My Bloody Valentine – Isn’t Anything”

Album Review: Erasers- Constant Connection

There’s definitely a trend at the moment for indie bands to emulate post-punk bands. I can hear traces of The Raincoats, Wire and Fatal Microbes in current popular bands like Dry Cleaning, Yard Act and Life. So it goes with the incredibly minimalist Erasers. The duo from Perth in Australia, comprised of Rebecca Orchard andContinue reading “Album Review: Erasers- Constant Connection”