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Since January 2010, ‘The Octopus’ has been dormant. After Amplifier’s attempts to create mass hysteria around the record had died down, ‘The Octopus’ lay sleeping… resting…latent.
For those unfamiliar with ‘The Octopus’, it was the name of Amplifier’s third studio album. An album lasting just over 2 hours and if you were lucky enough to have it (I was) accompanied by a 70-page ‘opus’. As far as prog rock sagas go, beating ‘The Octopus’ is going to be a challenge no Mars Volta or Fiery Furnaces will take lightly.
It seems timely, then, that at a time when prog rock seems to be going through the doldrums, that Amplifier return with their fourth record, ‘Echo Street’, scheduled to be released next Monday (11 March). First single ‘Matmos’ is probably the best way to get yourself stuck into Amplifier as a beginner to their sound. As make no mistake, the kind of rock operas that this band produce are absolute marmite rock at its best. If it’s your thing, you’ll hang on every chord, whilst if you abhor warbling solos and songs less than 5 minutes long then this kind of stuff will hit your eardrums like a baby crying.
‘Matmos’, available a free download from their record label’s Bandcamp here, as I mentioned is a fantastic marker for what the Manchester-based band are about. Sel Balamir’s provide the beginning to the wave of harmony and “nah nah nah nah nahs” that undercut the song, and his voice stays as haunting as it ever has been throughout ‘The Octopus’, 2006’s ‘Insider ‘and 2004 debut ‘Amplifier’.
Take note purveyors of prog; If you want to whet appetites, this is how…
‘Echo Street’, the fourth album from Manchester’s Amplifier, will be released on the 11th of March on Kscope and can be preordered here. The album is available on CD, double vinyl and as a limited edition, deluxe two-disc set. The deluxe edition is packaged in a 60 page-hardback book and also features the new ‘Sunriders’ EP an additional record of new tunes, exclusive to this release. Catch them on tour on the dates below the video for ‘Matmos’.
Saturday 16th March 2013 – Preston 53 Degrees
Sunday 17th March 2013 – Bristol Fleece
Monday 18th March 2013 – York Duchess
Tuesday 19th March 2013 – Glasgow King Tut’s
Wednesday 20th March 2013 – Nottingham Rock City
Thursday 21st March 2013 – London Garage
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 6th March 2013 at 10:00 am
Scanners will be making a couple high-profile appearances at SXSW next week, so it’s perfect timing that the four-piece are offering up their track ‘Control’ from their new EP ‘Mexico’, out this week on Steve Aoki’s Dim Mak label. Grab it below. Also below is the video for title track ‘Mexico’, as well as a list of all their SXSW appearances below for your convenience.
SXSW 2013 appearances:
Wednesday 13th March – Dim Mak Showcase, 418 E. 6th Str, time TBA
Thursday 14th March – Soho Lounge, 217 E. 6th Street, 10 PM
Saturday 16th March – Beautiful Buzz / Deli Radio, Brew Exchange, 706 E. 6th Street, 6:50 PM
By Mary Chang
on Tuesday, 5th March 2013 at 10:00 am
Manchester’s Delphic are at it again with the latest in a string of confounding actions. In January it was the less than wowing release of ‘Collections’. The latest? They’ve taken ‘Rehab’ by late cult soul singer Amy Winehouse of the pop genre they’ve professed to love so much and remixed it. Seems as random as the time they covered Cheryl Cole’s ‘3 Words’ in the Radio1 Live Lounge. I’m not a fan of Winehouse, but I’m wondering, was this really necessary? This new version of ‘Rehab’ is available as a free download below, as is what they’re calling the Delphic DJs March 2013 mixtape.
By Mary Chang
on Monday, 4th March 2013 at 10:00 am
We previewed Leeds lads China Rats in the rock / metal / punk UK bands chapter of the TGTF Guide to SXSW 2013. Now they’re like to offer you something free for the taking: ‘Nip It in the Bud’, a track produced last November with London producer Hugh Worskett (Delphic, I Dream in Colour, Katie Sutherland). Listen to and grab it for your own in the Soundcloud widget below. Their press folks sent me the below list of places and times when you can catch them live at SXSW 2013:
Thursday 14 March: Beautiful Buzzz Party @ The Brew Exchange (706 W 6th) @ 3:30pm
Thursday 14 March: British Music Embassy @ Latitude 30 (512 San Jacinto) @ 5:30pm
Friday 15 March: British Music Embassy @ Latitude 30 (512 San Jacinto) @ 10pm
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 28th February 2013 at 10:00 am
Ghostpost is offering up this free download of track ‘MSI MUSMID’, from his forthcoming album ‘Some Say I So I Say Light’, which is scheduled for release on the 6th of May on PIAS. This second album is the follow-up to Ghostpoet’s 2011 Mercury Prize-nominated debut album ‘Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam’. Listen to and download the teaser song below. He’ll be touring in May and June, all the details are below.
Saturday 18th May 2013 – Coventry Kasbah
Tuesday 21th May 2013 – Liverpool East Village Arts Club
Wednesday 22nd May 2013 – Sheffield Queens Road Social
Thursday 23rd May 2013 – Newcastle Cluny
Friday 24th May 2013 – Glasgow Broadcast
Saturday 25th May 2013 – Edinburgh Electric Circus
Monday 27th May 2013 – Bournemouth Winchester
Tuesday 28th May 2013 – Manchester Gorilla
Wednesday 29th May 2013 – Leeds Brudenell Social Club
Thursday 30th May 2013 – London Village Underground
Sunday June 2nd – Leicester Academy
Monday June 3rd – Oxford Academy
Friday June 7th – Suffolk John Peel Arts Centre
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 27th February 2013 at 10:00 am
I’m excited. The 1975 from Manchester are coming to my town 2 weeks after SXSW 2013. (We profiled them in the UK electronic acts chapter of the TGTF Guide to SXSW 2013.) When they are in Washington, they will be playing DC9, where Delphic made their local debut in 2010. Synthesiser band vs. synthesiser band…should be interesting if the 1975’s set will rival the Delphs’… But I digress…
The purpose of today’s MP3 of the Day post? The 1975 are giving away a collection of remixes based around their last EP ‘Sex’, which include previously revealed remixes by Ryan Hemsworth, Hackman and Andrea, plus two previously unheard remixes from Blue Sky Black Death and Plan. Listen to and download the Blue Sky Black Death remix for free below, and you can grab the whole load of remixes for free in exchange for your email address in the widget underneath.
Yesterday we showed you the new video for ‘Chocolate’, the lead song from ‘Music for Cars’, a new EP by the band out on Monday. Catch the 1975 at SXSW on Tuesday 12 March at 11 PM at the British Music Embassy’s home for the week, Latitude 30, and the ASCAP showcase at Red Eyed Fly on Wednesday 13 March, time TBA.