Thursday, 27 October 2016
Words: Sam Geary
New Jersey's indie-rock group NGHTCRWLRS might not only be opposed to vowels, but the quartet - who are building up to the release of their second album, 'Raging Hot' - also do their own thing on first single cut 'Are Two Dee Too' which dropped last week.
With some fine 90s rock grooves, the track opens on an extended enticing guitar riff before they layer in reverb and the grungey vocal comes in through spacey melodies.
'Raging Hot' is out on November 11 via Sniffling Indie Kids.
Words: Linn Branson
Cardiff boys Monico Blonde plant plenty of riffs into the mix on this new track, 'Bad Thoughts'.
We don't know what those bad thoughts may be, but we sure ain't having any of them about this little belter, the rapid follow-up to recent debut 'Breathe'. Produced with Gethin Pearson (The Enemy, Radio On, JAWS), ‘Bad Thoughts’ is one smacking big slice of indie pop that fires up on a hefty bass line that comes stalking behind brash riffs and an earworm of a beat, that straddles Jack Butler's strong leading vocals.
Considering the band haven't even been together as long as four months yet (under this moniker at least: three of the band were previously together as Houdini Dax), expect big things from these four Welsh Blondes next year.
Goodbye Terrible Youth
November 4 2016 (Fat Possum)
Words: Richard O’Hagan
It’s that time of year again, folks. The warm evenings of summer have given way to the chill nights of autumn and winter, light summer ales have been replaced with dark winter brews, and suddenly those breezy and cheerful summer anthems just don’t cut it any more. What you really need, then, is something solid, but uplifting to listen to, something to warm your veins like a good red wine and prevent you from descending into those dread January blues three months too soon. A good, seasonal, tonic, if you like.
In which case, Scottish-American band American Wrestlers might just be the thing that you are looking for. Dense and fuzzy guitars are undercut by a tinkling melodic piano that is most noticeable on current single ‘Amazing Grace’, a remarkable four-minute number where (Scots-born, now St. Louis, Missouri based) Gary McClure’s vocals drift in an out of the mix. There’s a definite West Coast feel to it all, and yet it seems so very fresh, different and, yes, warming.
McClure’s voice is more to the fore elsewhere, at which point it becomes evident that this is actually a much more bittersweet record than it first appears to be. From the bold opening statement of ‘Vote Thatcher’, with its deliberately ambiguous refrain of ‘I still can’t believe that you’ve died’, to the slower, more melancholic ‘Hello, Dear’ and it’s call to ‘Pay to pray’. Only on closer ‘Real People’ does McClure offer a glimmer of lyrical sunlight, as he urges us to "Take hand / don’t you worry about me."
It is no exaggeration to say that there are no fillers among the nine tracks on this album. Heck, there are plenty of bands who have passed through this place and who would kill for a song as good as ‘Someone Far Away’ – and that’s the weakest number here. Frankly, if you’re not humming the title track by the end then you’ve not been listening properly. This might be Goodbye Terrible Youth, but is a very welcome ‘hello’ to American Wrestlers.
Wednesday, 26 October 2016
Photo: Daniel Stark
Words: Linn Branson
"It is co-quin mig-ale!" so Radio X's John Kennedy nails the correct pronunciation of the Newcastle indie grunge-rock four-piece (who have had us all working on our own interpretation of the curious name) as he plays the new single, 'SOFT', for the second night in a row this week on his late night radio show.
They've had some good previous tracks out - 'SOCOTRA', 'LUV', 'GOLD', 'Pt. 2', the unforgettable 'Grindie', and of course their August released debut album 'Munro' - voted a whacking 9/10 by our reviewer. But 'SOFT', although not as yielding as its title may lead you to think, is three minutes of perhaps their best soaring, melodically driven sound so far. Whilst there's a lightness of touch in Alexander Soper's washed-out vocals, there's a rock solid drum base and striking layered guitars that maintain their fluid dynamic.
'SOFT' is officially released on November 18 via Fierce Panda Records.
28 NEWCASTLE Head Of Steam
29 STOCKTON The Green Room
04 LEEDS Verve Bar
05 MANCHESTER Night & Day
11 CHESTER The Live Rooms
12 BATH The Nest
17 NEWCASTLE The Cluny 2
18 LONDON Camden Assembly
19 LIVERPOOL Legion
25 SHEFFIELD Plug
06 LONDON Amersham Arms
Five Minutes with ... High Tyde
Words: Linn Branson
First heard by Little Indie back in the early part of 2014 after the release of their first EP ‘Fuzz’ followed by single 'Karibu', Brighton foursome High Tyde have since gone on to tour with Peace, Little Comets and Eliza & The Bear to name but three, play festivals around the country (including a first appearance at Reading & Leeds this year), release two further EPs, and generally win fans over with their melodic tunes and energy driven live act.
Little Indie spoke with lead singer Cody Thomas-Mathews just before the band begun their headline UK tour yesterday (scroll down for all dates) about tours, life in the High Tyde camp and their upcoming fourth EP, 'Real', out on October 28 via Loud Talk.
Hey, Cody, good day. So, where do we find you at this precise moment?
Cody: Hey! Just in the van on the way to Leeds for the first show of tour, listening to the Arctic Monkeys' 'Favourite Worst Nightmare' - big album.
What does tour preparing involve for you: Do you pack loads of ciggies and Marmite in with the pants and socks? Are there any peculiarities that might surprise us?
Cody: Haha! Yes, of course! I've got my speaker for vibes backstage. It's a must. The boys would kill me if I forgot it! Spencer brings clippers for spontaneous hair cuts.
Is that aspect, being on the road and performing live, the best part of what you do - bit like a lads' jolly! - or is the actual creative side, the writing and recording, where you feel happiest?
Cody: We enjoy all aspects of this band! But there's nothing like jumping in a van for a tour, playing rad shows and meeting great characters. We're constantly creative, especially on tour as we are with each other 24/7.
How did you come up with the name High Tyde. Is it right that it has a link to Noel Gallager?
Cody: Yesssss, it's a lyric from a song in the first High Flying Birds record: "High Tide / summer in the city".
Why did that strike a chord with you in particular as a band name?
Cody: We felt like it fit what we were about and our sound. Obviously we live by the sea also! When Spence made the logo, with emphasis on the G, we thought it looked the part.
What can you tell us about the new EP you have ready for release?
Cody: We feel it's our strongest yet, and we're so buzzing to get it out there and hear what people think! It's a massive leap from 'Safe'. These songs are gonna make the pits bigger.
Will 'Speak' be on it? That really has something. Also, a strong Viola Beach flavour, would you agree with that?
Cody: 'Speak' is the opening track. Viola Beach? Yeah, I guess so. It's a song that means a lot to me around the time we wrote 'Real', so it felt right that it was on it.
Where do you take your influences from for lyrics?
Cody: My everyday life. The notes on my phone go on forever, haha! I am constantly writing, as things come to me at the most random times.
Which of your songs means the most to you, and why?
Cody: 'Dark Love' is a pretty special one for me. It's about an unbreakable, intense love, that I feel everyone can relate to. Every time we play it live so many people sing it and that literally means the world. It takes me back a bit; we wrote that song in the tiniest room and now people sing it back to me every night.
When writing do you visualise how it would come across live to a crowd? Have any not turned out how you'd hoped?
Cody: I love the aspect of taking a song from a little room to a live environment. So yes, definitely. Before releasing a song we usually test it out live and see what the vibe is - like 'Dark Love'. We played that at Boardmasters and it was received so well we had to drop it, ASAP.
Where does the new EP go from your previous efforts? Do you feel you are developing with each record you put out?
Cody: One hundred per-cent. We are always maturing our sound with every song we write. I feel that 'Real' is the best of High Tyde to date, I have never been so excited to release an EP.
What unfulfilled ambitions do you have for High Tyde, and do you have a time plan for achieving them?
Cody: We want to travel the world a lot more and do bigger tours. I also really wanna play in Australia! It's like my dream.
If each of you weren't in the band what would you be doing now?
Cody: Fuckkkk.... I don't even know what I would do without this band. Probably work in a bar somewhere. I need to get some tips off of Spence - he's the cocktail king.
Tell us one quirky thing about each of you.
Cody: Spencer makes all our artwork. I edit all the videos. Connor calls everyone by their second name, for some reason haha! Louis has a serious iced tea addiction.
Brighton is a real buzzy town to be in, do you have time to get out and check the competition? Who are you rating currently on the music scene?
Cody: We don't get to go to as many gigs as we should do, but we saw Loyle Carner the the week, and, oh man, that guy is cool. Really love what he's making. Also Black Honey are fucking rad - van jams.
What do you think you've learnt over the last years being in a band, about yourselves, about music?
Cody: That music is the only thing I want to be doing, I couldn't imagine anything else. Also touring with your three best mates is amazing.
High Tyde are: Cody Thomas-Matthews (vocals, bass, electronics), Spencer Tobias-Williams (guitar), Connor Cheetham (guitar), Louis Semlekan-Faith (drums, backing vocals).
More info: FACEBOOK
25 Leeds, The Wardrobe
26 Edinburgh, Electric Circus
27 Glasgow, The Garage
28 Newcastle, Think Tank
29 Birmingham, Rainbow
30 Brighton, Concorde 2
01 London, Scala
02 Bristol, Exchange
03 Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach
04 Liverpool, Arts Club
05 Leicester, The Cookie
Tuesday, 25 October 2016
Words: Linn Branson
The debut track from London-based singer-songwriter Cameron Jones, 'Rose', is a sweetly fragrant thing, as you will hear if you stream the sub-four minute song below.
Released last week, 'Rose' is one of those quiet beauties that touches a chord and lingers in the memory sufficiently to warrant more than just one play. Accompanied by guitar and piano, Jones' honest, emotive and intelligent lyrics ("a battleground is where we're sleeping / want to love you with all my heart / but it's stopped beating") derive inspiration from "a point in a relationship where fun and loving memories put a rose tinted view on a not so happy present, with a reluctance to accept the reality only making the situation more complicated."
The song's structure is built around the unobtrusive piano and minimal guitar that allow Jones' voice to resonate with the listener, unhampered.
Jones, who has spent the last year working nights at a blues bar, while playing open mic nights, is a bedroom recording artist who, if given the right exposure and if he has more songs like this one, could be en route for life well beyond the four walls of home.
More info: FACEBOOK
More info: FACEBOOK