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If you’re a fan of the more frenetic side of The Vaccines, then I’m betting you’re going to love this new promo from Justin, Freddie, Arni and Pete. This track, ’20/20′, features on ‘English Graffiti’, their third full-length album that was released in May. (Read Carrie’s thoughts on the LP here.) Next time you put drops in your eyes, I doubt you’re ever going to look at that action the same way again. ::shudder:: Watch the promo below.
The Vaccines have a UK headline tour lined up for November 2015; catch all of TGTF’s past coverage on the Vaccines through here.
Editor Mary and I first encountered Belfast singer/songwriter Travis is a Tourist in a rather fortunate coincidence at SXSW 2014, where he performed both on his own and with fellow Northern Irish artist RAMS’ Pocket Radio. Travis is a Tourist, who is known offstage as Travis Gilbert, has been steadily on the TGTF radar since then, with an appearance at Liverpool Sound City 2014 and now, after more than a year’s wait, a new EP release titled ‘Weakdays’.
The EP’s title is thought-provoking, even before you hear a single note of the music. The tweaked spelling of ‘weekdays’ implies an unsettled feeling, a sense of restlessness and anticipation. Musically, the songs on the EP reflect that sentiment by way of wistful guitar melodies, lingering vocal lines, and perpetual rhythmic motion, while thematically the effect is achieved through the direct, concise emotional impact of Gilbert’s introspective lyrics. Gilbert’s restrained vocal delivery is key to the reflective nature of the songs, and the slight roughness in his singing voice is perfectly modulated to the mood of the music.
‘Weakdays’ opens with a frank and self-revelatory track called ‘Tourist’, whose initial line is a strong statement of intent: “For those who don’t know, I’ve always had a fascination with leaving home”. Melancholy and resigned, the song still retains a confident sense of determination and pace that sets the tone for the rest of the EP. (Gilbert also wins points here with a reference to one of my personal favourite Counting Crows songs in the opening verse.)
The EP’s first single ‘Loosen Up’, which you can download for free for a limited time from Gilbert’s SoundCloud, is a slow burner with a languorous opening verse and a quick, shuffling chorus that will make your heart skip a beat. The simple refrain is warmly memorable, more of a reassuringly whispered mantra than a boldly declared motto, with a repeated bridge section echoing beneath the final repeat. The song was premiered on The Thin Air last week and has already received radio play on BBC Radio Ulster’s Across the Line as that program’s Track for the Day #175.
‘Getting Close’ opens with a chugging muted guitar under the evocative lyrical hook, “evening crept in, just as afternoon had wore thin” before growing into an expansively melodic chorus. Despite its fretful title, ‘Worry’ is uptempo and energetic throughout, with blissed out vocal layers in its chorus, “don’t worry about the morning sun / don’t worry, it’ll still be there when you get up”.
The EP closes, appropriately, with the austere arrangement of ‘Loud’, which exemplifies Travis is a Tourist’s fundamental sound, distilled down to the raw emotional power of a single guitar and Gilbert’s intensely understated vocals before layering strings and backing vocals in the repeated chorus. Gilbert has wisely resisted the temptation to overproduce the songs on this EP, choosing instead to highlight his best assets, namely the fine grit of his singing voice and his honest, uncomplicated approach to songwriting.
Travis is a Tourist’s self-released EP ‘Weakdays’ is available now on his Bandcamp page. Previous TGTF coverage of Travis is a Tourist can be found right back here.
Everyone’s favourite curmudgeon from Manchester, Morrissey, has announced a trio of live dates for September 2015. He’ll be stopping at Hull Arena for one show, followed by two at London Hammersmith Apollo and will no doubt be playing old favourites along with new tracks from his most recent album released last year, the appropriately cynically-titled ‘World Peace is None of Your Business’. Tickets will be on sale this Friday, the 10th of July, at 9 AM.
Friday 18th September 2015 – Hull Arena
Sunday 20th September 2015 – London Hammersmith Apollo
Monday 21st September 2015 – London Hammersmith Apollo
Sunderland’s Frankie and the Heartstrings – now with a new line-up since the release of 2013’s ‘The Days Run Away’ – have announced a series of live appearances this month to celebrate the release of their third and latest album. ‘Decency’ sees the light of day this Friday, the 10th of July, on the band’s own Pop Sex Ltd. and can be preordered now from Wichita Records.
Friday 10th July 2015 – Newcastle Cluny
Saturday 11th July 2015 – Newcastle Reflex Records (in-store appearance)
Saturday 11th July 2015 – Sunderland Pop Rec Ltd. (in-store appearance)
Sunday 12th July 2015 – Nottingham Rough Trade Records (in-store appearance)
Tuesday 14th July 2015 – London Hackney Oslo
Wednesday 15th July 2015 – Bristol Rise Records (in-store appearance)
Thursday 16th July 2015 – Kingston Banquet Records (in-store appearance)
Thursday 16th July 2015 – Kingston New Slang
By Mary Chang
on Sunday, 5th July 2015 at 10:00 am
New Jersey punks Titus Andronicus always do things on their own terms. Take, for example, the band’s upcoming fourth album ‘The Most Lamentable Tragedy’, which clocks in at more than 90 minutes in length spread out over an impressive 29 tracks. It’ll be out on the 7th of August on Merge Records.
To herald in an effort of such epic proportions, it only makes sense that they would also unveil a promo video that was pretty epic too. The video below, which goes on for over 15 minutes, includes six songs and the band refer to these songs as “the album’s second act”, or ‘The Magic Morning’/‘Beside Himself’. Interesting… Anyway, grab a cup of tea, joe or whatever your poison is this fine Sunday morning and settle in to watch all the epicness unfold below.
By Mary Chang
on Saturday, 4th July 2015 at 10:00 am
The Libertines‘ story is one known by many, and those of us who do know it assumed we would never see them ever play together again, mostly owing the co-frontman Pete Doherty’s continuing drug problems and erratic behaviour. Even when the band reunited for a series of shows and Reading and Leeds in 2010, I just assumed those were one offs and merely for the money and nostalgia. So when it was revealed in late 2014 that the original four members of the band – Doherty, Carl Barat (who had been moonlighting with his new band Carl Barat and the Jackals), bassist John Hassall and drummer Gary Powell – had signed a record deal with Virgin EMI and they would record it out in Thailand where Doherty had been receiving treatment in rehab, it appeared a new, exciting chapter for the Libertines was about to begin.
And it has. Foo Fighters‘ Glastonbury 2015 cancellation after Dave Grohl broke his leg at a gig in Gothenburg, Sweden earlier in June left a headliner-sized hole in the Friday night line-up. This allowed for the Libertines to be a last-minute, super secret guest for the night, wowing surprised crowds with old classics and new songs. Below, watch them perform their hit ‘Don’t Look Back into the Sun'; incidentally, it was one of the first songs I ever learned on bass, so it’s an important one to me.
One of the new songs that premiered not at Glasto 2015 but earlier at Holland’s Best Kept Secret was ‘Gunga Din’, which now has a promo video. The bromance between Pete and Carl is back and better than ever, it seems! Watch it below.
‘Anthems for Doomed Youth’, the long-awaited third album from the reunited Libertines, will be released on the 4th of September on Virgin EMI.
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