By Mary Chang
on Friday, 16th August 2013 at 6:00 pm
Summer Camp‘s forthcoming single ‘Fresh’, out on the 2nd of September, has a funky ’70s dance groove. So the promo video is also appropriately low budget as they were back then too. The duo release their self-titled album, their second and the follow-up to 2011’s ‘Welcome to Condale’, on the 9th of September on Moshi Moshi.
By Mary Chang
on Friday, 16th August 2013 at 4:00 pm
This summer, Little Boots collaborated with the first ever London OMG Cameras Everywhere Camp, where volunteers worked with kids to film dance videos. This effort is soundtracked by Victoria Hesketh’s ‘Shake’ and she says of the video, “I had so much fun with them LOVE it!” Watch it below.
By Mary Chang
on Thursday, 15th August 2013 at 6:00 pm
In Camera Obscura‘s new promo video for ‘Break It to You Gently’, a push cart named Elvis goes on an adventure. You’re going to need tissues for this one. Trust me. Watch it below.
Earlier this summer, I reviewed Laura Marling’s new album, ‘Once I Was An Eagle’, which was, effectively, two separate albums folded into one release. KT Tunstall’s latest release, ‘Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon’, is a similar kind of collection: two sets of songs, each inspired by a significant event in Tunstall’s life. (In earlier interviews, Tunstall has stated these events to be the loss of her father and separation from her husband, Luke Bullen, who plays drums—notably—on only the first half of the album.) Just as Marling sought haven in America around the release of her album, Tunstall retreated to Arizona to record hers, finding inspiration in the desert for both the music and the album artwork.
Tunstall’s album is less experimental in nature than Marling’s, but it is pleasantly surprising in its own way. ‘Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon’ has a distinctly country kind of sound, which is unexpected, but in perfect keeping with the pensive, melancholic mood of the lyrics. Tunstall doesn’t lose her typical bluesy rock sound entirely, but rather flavors it with liberal inflections of traditional, old-fashioned country. The style suits the tone of her lyrics as well as the timbre of her voice, which sounds stunningly beautiful throughout the album. She deftly avoids the contrived effects that so many female singers rely on these days, instead keeping her singing light and flexible, without quite delving into the vocal gymnastics of her earlier work (‘Suddenly I See’, ‘Black Horse and the Cherry Tree’). The overall effect is soft and soothing, even when she explores the lower register of her voice, where many singers can become harsh and grating.
Instrumentally, many of the songs depend on acoustic guitar and pedal steel for their country twang, but the other sonic effects are more eclectic. Bowed string arrangements fill out what might otherwise be a sparse acoustic sound on ‘Old Man Song’ and ‘Crescent Moon’, while ‘Honeydew’ features wind and brass instruments employed to a remarkably delicate effect. First single ‘Feel It All’ has a sultry blues feel, with a slinky guitar riff and fluidly singable chorus. The album ends with the psychedelic guitars of ‘No Better Shoulder’.
Upcoming single ‘Invisible Empire’ doesn’t strike as an immediately strong opening track, but echoes of the chorus played back in my mind as I listened to the rest of the album. Its lyrical musings on the mutable nature of reality foreshadow the remainder of the record in a very subtle way. After it was all said and done (or played and sung), my mind kept wandering back to this track as the focal point of the album. The video for ‘Invisible Empire’ can be viewed below.
The regular version of ‘Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon’ contains 12 tracks plus the bonus ‘Feel It All—Band Jam’. The deluxe version includes three additional bonus tracks and a haunting cover of Don Henley’s ‘The Boys of Summer’, which by itself is worth the additional cost.
‘Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon’ is out now on Virgin Records. Tunstall’s next single, ‘Invisible Empire’, will be released on Monday (19 August).
By Mary Chang
on Wednesday, 14th August 2013 at 6:00 pm
We’re very pleased to hear that To Kill a King have just signed a deal with Xtra Mile Recordings (the fine folks that bring you releases from Frank Turner and Future of the Left). They’ll be releasing a special deluxe edition of ‘Cannibals with Cutlery’ on Xtra Mile on the 7th of October with four extra tracks not on the original release; their first single with Xtra Mile, ‘Rays’, will also be available on digital download on the same day. Here is the promo for the first song they ever wrote, ‘Bones’. The promo is a nice smattering of clips from their life on the road. Watch it below. One better, the band want to give you the song absolutely free; you can get it from the Soundcloud widget, also embedded below.
To Kill a King will also be touring the UK in October and November; the dates are listed under the video and mp3 embeds.
Friday18th October 2013 – Brighton Audio
Sunday 20th October 2013 – Bristol Thekla
Monday 21st October 2013 – Wolverhampton Slade Room
Tuesday 22nd October 2013 – Leeds Brudenell Social Club
Wednesday 23rd October 2013 – Liverpool Blade Factory
Friday 25th October 2013 – Preston 53 Degrees
Saturday 26th October 2013 – Edinburgh Electric Circus
Sunday 27th October 2013 – Newcastle Cluny
Monday 28th October 2013 – Sheffield Leadmill
Tuesday 29th October 2013 – London Koko
Thursday 31st October 2013 – Nottingham Rescue Rooms
Friday1st November 2013 – Southampton Joiners
By Mary Chang
on Tuesday, 13th August 2013 at 6:00 pm
Sky Larkin are back with a new single, ‘Loom’, to be released on Wichita Recordings on the 9th of September. Their next album, ‘Motto’, is due out a week later, on the 16th of September. The summery, freewheeling feel of the promo for ‘Loom’ belies its true nature (listen to the lyrics). Watch it below.