Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Vanbot: Got To Get Out

It's bright and happy and synthy, and perhaps too sugary... but I like it like that.
"Ester Ideskog composes synth-heavy electro-pop hits under her new alias Vanbot. Vanbot has been making music since the early teen years and was constantly searching for the right sound, but she often found herself a little too sprawling. After the completion of “Bitter is the sweetest part” her music finally found it’s dressing. In the little studio with the oversized world map Vanbot's dreams can fly freely to compose electronic soundscapes inspired by synthesizers and drum machines." Wha? Just listen.
Vanbot - Got To Get Out by Vanbot

Monday, February 27, 2012

Red Shoe Diaries: I Still Call It Twee

I fell for this one instantly! All three tracks will make you smile. I'm a sucker for these girl/boy indie pop pieces. This one is particularly good if twee's your thing. Nottingham's Red Shoe Diaries released the lead single from their 10" EP on Fika Recordings When I Find My Heart today (Monday, February 27th, 2012).

Ice & Snow has been released by Fika Recordings as a digital download single, available on a pay-what-you-like basis. It comes with two brand new b-sides: "Driving Blind" and "Saturday Love Rocket". Their EP "When I Find My Heart" is available to buy and listen to from Fika Recordings (a DIY indiepop cassette and vinyl label).

Spiritualized: Sweet Heart Sweet Light out April 17th.

Spiritualized are back with a 7th studio album: Sweet Heart Sweet Light will be released on Fat Possum on April 17th, 2012. Below is the first track "Hey Jane". I caught them with The Jesus and Mary Chain back in the early 90's at the Palladium in Los Angeles. Talk about a dream-show!
Spiritualized 'Hey Jane' by Spiritualized

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Soaring dream-pop from Modern Charms

Formed in the Sunset District of San Francisco, California, Modern Charms combine the dreamy influence of their natural surroundings with a fondness for the blissed-out and melodic sounds of the '90s...
Below are two tracks from a six song recording session that will hopefully find itself released as a 12" in the coming months.

Jangle-pop from Sweden's The Bombhappies

Haven't had anything that excites me hit my inbox lately, so I am scraping about on my favorite blogs. I found this nice one by Sweden's Bombhappies on It's A Trap!:
Ants by Bombhappies
Update: I felt I should mention that the band will be releasing their album "A Good Fire" on March 7th, 2012. The single "Ants" is on iTunes here and Spotify here.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Stream Memoryhouse's "The Slideshow Effect"

Memoryhouse's dreamy debut LP "The Slideshow Effect" is streaming in full over at Spin. It's nice to hear this sound being published by Sub Pop. I find it annoying that Dum Dum Girls are used as a reference for Memoryhouse's sound. That act isn't bad or anything, but just nothing more than another band that sounds like many more out there. Not a point of reference, as nothing much that wasn't done before and better, is happening.
Again, it's that point at which you decide to go in for familiar or new/the next thing. Ignore the "sounds like" name drops and form your own opinion. I know I did, and I found the album to be worth my time.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Grimes mini-interview

You will most certainly want to skip ahead to about 5 minutes, 30 seconds in. The beginning is unbearable, but the reward is an mini-interview with Grimes (aka Claire Boucher). I highly recommend her "Visions" album. Her live show at Soda Bar is sold out, but I did catch her at The Casbah a few months ago. I am not sure who is doing the booking for Soda Bar, but some great acts (Blouse, Cold Cave, Grimes) are coming through San Diego thanks to them.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

New Video: "Raw Spectacle" by Miracle Fortress

I am excited to share a music video for "Raw Spectacle" by Miracle Fortress (taken from 2011's "​Was I the Wave"). It's directed by Emily Kai Bock (Grimes' upcoming "Oblivion") and shot by Neal Rockwell. I was impressed to read the whole video was made for around $800.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Like Watching A Baby Dolphin Being Born

Yes, the title of this entry is real. That's a line from the notes describing "Azure Blue", a new solo project from Tobias Isaksson (of Sweden's Irene and Laurel Music).
While I think readers / listeners will find Azure Blue a worthy listen, I think the baby dolphin thing is bizarre. I just close my eyes....when anything is being born, not that it's anything less than wonderful.
My faves from Azure Blue: Dreamy Eyes, The Catcher In The Rye, Long Way Down.
Rule of Thirds for The Fader by Azure Blue

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Ah, after a few days of poor offerings from RCRDLBL I have found something worth sharing. I'd skip ahead to "Geri" on the player above.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Connecticut's Cosmic Watercolors: Synthpop

The debut single from Connecticut electro-pop group Cosmic Watercolors is "Eskimo Kisses". The video is of the lyric type, but it's fine, as the song is lovely in its simplicity. Find them on Facebook.

Dreampop from The Machine Room

I was instantly attracted to dreampop of Edinburgh's The Machine Room. They collect all the elements of the early 90's shoegaze and dreampop and mix them with the revived synths and vocal styles of today. I can continue to gush about these four songs or you can just listen for yourself!

Hooverphonic With Orchestra due March 9

Hooverphonic announced the tracklisting of their concept album "Hooverphonic With Orchestra". There will be 17 songs on the album including a new song called "Happiness". The album will be available in all stores as from March 9th, 2012.
Didn't they already do this with the "Sit Down and Listen To" album? I guess that one was just a more slowed-down or nearly acoustic album.

1. Happiness
2. One Two Three
3. The Night Before
4. Heartbroken
5. The Last Thing
6. 2Wicky
7. Anger Never Dies
8. Unfinished Sympathy
9. Expedition Impossible
10. George's Café
11. Jackie Kane
12. Mad About You
13. Sometimes
14. Vinegar & Salt
15. Eden
16. Renaissance Affair
17. Danger Zone

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Some Desperate Glory: Synthpop at it's finest

Once in a while, I get an outstanding synthpop submission to share. I felt this one was a true stand-out. Lyrics that sound personal, a mid-tempo beat throughout, and that smooth voice. This polished effort is worth your time, trust me.
Here's just one example. Find more on the Some Desperate Glory SoundCloud page or download the whole album "Redo From Start" for free over at Bandcamp.
The Only Way Out is Through by somedesperateglory

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Electro and Synthpop: North and South America

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos
In less than one second, I thought "Goldfrapp", at least musically. The voice: I thought of a Hooverphonic vocalist or even closer: Puracane... still, I can't say I do not like this track from Canada's Ariane Moffat. Check out "In Your Body", a single from "MA", written, performed and produced completely by Ariane herself; in her creative space, at studio Planet and at Montrealʼs Hotel2tango studio (Arcade Fire, Barr Brothers, Handsome Furs). iTunes Pre Order Link
Canal Pop sent me a fun, bouncy bit of synthpop from South America (Buenos Aires, Argentina). The artist writes: "The songs are very catchy and are sung by the experimented vocalist Polette who shared stages with Shakira and Deep Purple among many others. The sound is a mix of Erasure, Pet Shop Boys, Kylie Minogue, La Roux, David Guetta, Lady Gaga, Ke$ha and classic electropop in general."
What I liked was the admission that the man behind the music, Emiliano Canal, said he "Doesn't really sing, so Canal Pop features different singers that take care of vocals." I think this humble approach is muy bueno, as so many synth/electro acts produce wonderful music, only to have the listener cringe at the vocals.
I find this type of synthpop to be very playful, not overly serious. Think Freezpop.
Do check out "High Class Girls & Lo Fi Boys EP" by Canal Pop on iTunes.
Canal Pop - Two Of A Kind (rough mix) by Canal Pop