The title of Slowdive’s first album in 24 years is surprising insightful. The self-titled Slowdive is perhaps the most Slowdive-ish album of them all. It could pulled out of today and slotted into their discography and at any point in between their past releases.
The haunting, soaring guitars still take center stage – either doling out delicate melodies a la “Catch the Breeze” or wall-of-sound as they did on Blue Day. No more toying with electronics, this is the core Slowdive.
Given the way Slowdive fell apart at the crashing end of shoegaze, there is comforting assurance from knowing that when these five musicians get together, this is the music they make. Neil and Rachel’s voices still slot seamlessly together, with subtle undercurrents throughout the songs that demonstrate the maturity gained from more time on this planet. While Pygmalion has its fans, today’s new album is the one Slowdive should have released instead.
[Buy a copy of Slowdive on limited edition silver vinyl in the 3hive Co-op Shop. While supplies last.]
Melbourne’s Spotting will beat your ears into submission with their pounding, brain piercing, style of synth punk. Give the appropriately titled “Thumper”, from their new EP a spin below, you won’t be sorry.
Spotting’s self-titled EP is available now digitally from the band’s Bandcamp page and on wax through Aarght Records.
Bent Shapes‘ Luke Reed has been writing and recording solo material over the years, amassing a large collection of unreleased bedroom pop songs. In July of 2016, without any publicity or even album art, Reed quietly released his solo debut, Won’t Be There, on his Bandcamp page.
Won’t Be There is 13 (now 16) tracks of everything from lonely bedroom pop to jangly indie – all soaked in that lo-fi warmth of home recordings. In March of 2017, the good dudes at The Native Sound rereleased Won’t Be There with 3 additional songs and album art too. Give “Won’t Be There” and “Watching TV” a spin below and head over to the Native Sounds Bandcamp page for a copy. Be sure to send some money their way so hopefully, one day, Won’t Be There can be pressed to vinyl, as it deserves to be.
Oakland’s RAYS play a catchy brand of new wave/punk or “next wave” (as they like to call it), reminiscent of bands like Television, Wire and Gang of Four. These guys and gal are no copycat act either; their debut, self-titled, release (recorded by Kelley Stoltz and mastered by Mikey Young!) is eleven tracks of fresh sounding, jerky, hook-filled post-punk. Hit play on ‘Lost In A Cage’ and ‘Made of Shadows’ (streaming below), crank up the volume, and get your pogo on!
We have RAYS available on tasty yellow vinyl in the 3hive Co-op Shop! Get one before they’re gone.
Boston indie-pop rockers, Lilith, slay it on their new cassette release Apology Plant. It’s 6 tracks of fuzz-pop goodness hits me where it counts. Give their stomper “Rated R” (below) a spin to see what I mean.
Apology Plant is available now digitally on Lilith’s Bandcamp page and/or on cassette through Disposable America. Enjoy!
Fuzzed out head-bobbing bassline. Yes.
Thumping floor tom. You betcha.
Falsetto harmonies. How could it not?
8-bit video game sounds, ’cause the song is actually a video game. Duh.
Catchy as all get out. Yep.
Robert Schneider of the Apples in Stereo and James Higgins of Elf Power/Of Montreal. Ah yeah.
Available as an online-only RSD release.
I first fell for Robyn Hitchcock in the summer of 1985 when a WNUR deejay played an hour of his songs. I couldn’t put my finger on it – he was trippier than the Beatles, catchier than Syd Barrett, more poetic than Nick Lowe. All I knew is that even after an hour I wanted to hear more.
Fast forward to 2017… Hitchcock has moved native England to Nashville, but he packed his usual bag of tricks – the wry wit, familiar sneer, and psychedelic charm – all of which meld very well with partner Emma Swift’s backing vocals, the touches of pedal steel, and moments of nostalgia. It’s a fantastic album and exactly how I hoped this chapter of Hitchcock’s wandering career would begin.
[Buy Robyn Hitchcock’s self-titled album in the 3hive Co-op Shop while supplies last.]
Portland, Oregon 3 piece, Lubec, are back with a new release, Cosmic Debt. Like, The Thrall (their 2014 debut), Lubec comes at you in full force again, with more fuzzed-out, swirling guitars and killer three-part vocal harmonies. For a taste, give the standout track “Breakup Haricut” (below) a spin. Cosmic Debt is available on cassette and digitally via Disposable America and Lubec’s Bandcamp page. Enjoy.
Lubec – Breakup Haircut from Cosmic Debt (2016)
Singer and guitarist Jake Xerxes Fussell’s new album, What In The Natural World, is an enthralling effort of somewhat dark, somewhat humorous folk songs that parallel themselves quite accurately with the nation’s current quandary. Give one of my favorite songs of the year (so far) “Have You Ever Seen Peaches Growing On A Sweet Potato Vine?” (below) a spin.
What In The Natural World is a solid album from start to finish. I highly suggest adding this to your collection – which we can help you with – just jump on over to our Co-op shop and get yourself a copy, at a dang good price too!
20 tracks to hopefully get your springtime started off on the right foot!
1. The Gain – You Should Know (vinyl rip)
2. Thee Oh Sees – Bloody Water
3. Gang of Four – Glass
4. DiCaprio – Ectoslavia
5. Tomorrow’s Tulips – Hotel Nowhere
6. Karriem Riggins – Other Side of The Track
7. DJ Okawari – Bounce (feat. Talib Kweli)
8. Grandaddy – That’s What You Get For Gettin’ Outta Bed
9. Say Hi – Elouise
10. Gum Country – Whoa Oh
11. Nice Legs – Ashtrays
12. Ultramagnetic MC’s – Critical Beatdown
13. Oddisee – Digging Deep
14. Pilkington – All Around The Neighborhood
15. Easy Love – I Want You To Know
16. Molly Burch – Please Be Mine
17. No Vacation – Mind Field
18. Idles – Well Done
19. Elastica – Stutter
20. Damaged Bug – Bog Dash