Friday, October 30, 2009


Van She are back with a pretty awesome cover of Blue Öyster Cult's iconic hit, (Don't Fear) The Reaper. Now yeah, I know 70's fossil rock purists will scream in terror as anything pre-1980 is untouchably sacred, especially to some rubbish "electro" band that hasn't even become irrelevant yet! But moronic Luddites excluded, anyone who appreciates anything Van She has done before will definitely like what this cover brings to the table. Slightly more electronic than their work on V, it brings a completely different mood to an already amazing song.

If you haven't heard the original yet, definitely give it a listen. Then download this version and see what you think. Unfortunately it's only a radio rip, but it's one of the less obtrusive ones I've heard so I figured it still worth posting.

(Don't Fear) The Reaper - Van She (Radio Rip)

Thursday, October 15, 2009


There's not much info about Manuel Rebollo that's in a language that I can understand, but I can tell you he's Male, Spanish and roughly 22 years old.

I really love this guy's drawing style, he has really mastered conve
ying the female form (which is what he draws almost exclusively) in a very interesting way. He's actually an artist that has inspired me to improve my drawing skills lately, as I have mostly moved to digital format design since the horror that was my high school art teacher; but that's a story for another time.



Check out his website for heaps more.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Miami Horror have just released a new single titled Sometimes.

Featuring a New Order style guitar riff over the always amazing 80's Electro Miami Horror sound we've all come to know and love. From the second I heard Sometimes I loved it. Hopefully you will too.

Not much info on it, I'm pretty intrigued to find out who the guest vocals are from this time round; remembering that they recently utilised none other than VEGA and Neon Indian's Alan Palomo; it's likely someone from an existing band or project.

Also loving the cover sleeve, Miami Horror definitely have someone in the know working on their visual identity because it's always top-notch. Best i can find is that the Bravado EP cover was done by "DW" as quoted by their myspace page; whoever that is.
(UPDATE: Thanks to NeonLover for correcting me and providing a link to DW's page)
Sometimes - Miami Horror

DW Design


It's been a while since I checked in with Voltaire Twins, it would have been at least 2 years ago when I last heard their stuff. Seems like they've been touring extensively with some pretty big names including Miami Horror and Ladytron as well as cooking up some new material.

No album yet but their D.I.L. EP is pretty slick. The title track is rather catchy, and has a very Heads We Dance vibe to it. Check it out.
D.I.L. - Voltaire Twins


Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Alan Palomo never fucking stops.

Going from GhostHustler to VEGA and now Neon Indian; Palomo's more than content to have multiple identities functioning at once (in the case of VEGA and Neon Indian), and thankfully, his work never suffers as a result.

While VEGA is very much focused on the 80's Electro-Pop, Neon Indian's Psychic Chasms serves to vent Palomo's desires for more left-of-field experimentations. That said, this album will feel both similar and alien to you depending on what you listen to. Psychic Chasms is a thirty minute amalgamation of Daft Punk, Chromeo, Cut Copy, Thieves Like Us and any 80's Dream-Pop channeling band you care to name. Of course I could run off a list of at least a dozen other acts Neon Indian sounds similar to, but such comparisons are a tad lazy.

The album is simultaneously abstract yet accessible, and it's this quality that I believe is Psychic Chasms' greatest strength. Whenever the instrumental sample-ridden and warped synth-laden sound of the tracks are in danger of losing the interest of those with more conservative tastes, Palomo's silky smooth vocals draw you right back in. Every track is dripping in nostalgia and memory, they all seem like a return to the events of a distant past joined by both prangs of regret and joyful resurgence. No track fits the bill more than Should Have Taken Acid With You, a sleepy dreamscape of love lost and drug fueled euphoria, it's definitely Neon Indian's manifesto functioning at its highest level.

I can't help but draw comparisons to Memory Tapes' Seek Magic; it shares with Psychic Chasms a similar sound and similar influences but, for me, Seek Magic errs too far into the realm of aloofness, gaining attention for its unique compositions, then losing it for not ending the songs in half the time they take to get where they are going.

The quality of Psychic Chasms is deftly maintained throughout the LP, arguably because of Palomo's use of segue songs between the strongest tracks on the album. A similar format was seen in Cut Copy's In Ghost Colours, but I think Neon Indian pulls it off more successfully in this release. While it's a shame the album is done before you are; the less compelling tracks are made that much more successful in their shorter length, they begin to feel like intros and outros to the focus pieces of the album. When viewed in this way, it's hard to pick out any songs that really let down the album at all.

When all is said and done, Psychic Chasms is definitely not for everyone. Those looking for soaring, chorus-focused dancefloor tracks, they may be better served to seek out Palomo's more pop-oriented project; VEGA; because you won't find them here. That's not to say there aren't catchy tracks on the album, because there definitely are, and songs like Deadbeat Summer and Terminally Chill are great examples of this, but the album is definitely meant to be taken in as a whole package rather having its importance placed on singular songs.

As far as first albums go, Neon Indian hit the ground running. Although Alan Palomo has had time to refine his approach through his other works, and you can't help but be thankful he didn't attempt an album like this before he was truly ready. Psychic Chasms may take a few listens to take hold of you, but once it does, you'll find a multifaceted soundscape of nostalgia-soaked Chill-Wave that's very appealing.


Should Have Taken Acid With You - Neon Indian



Monarchy are a duo from the UK who are going for a Friendly Fires/Visitor/Junior Boys feel, a sound that's getting a bit of attention at the moment. It seems like the 80's intergalactic space-age sound of the past few years isn't in danger of going anywhere despite what the naysayers may claim. Which is all the better for me because I can't get enough of the stuff.

Gold In the Fire is a relatively down-tempo affair; a slow burning electro track with generous amounts of vocoder and falsetto. If you don't find yourself hooked at first, wait around for the chorus and it might just convert you.

Their visual identity seems to be pretty well thought out too, with some cool retro-futuristic design seen in both their band photo and their website header.

Gold In The Fire - Monarchy


Julian Rivoire
is a 26 year old Graphic Designer residing in France. He often operates under the moniker Bastard Graphics, and what he lacks in sensible pseudonym choice he more than makes up for in talent.

He tends to opt towards bright colours and bold shapes to achieve a very striking look. Here's some of his recent works; all of it with a very "now" feel to it.

(Note that these are effectively screen captures of his artwork from his website, for a more complete view, click on the link to his page at the bottom of the article.)



As far as business cards go, this has to be one of the more stylish ones I have seen. Really cool.


Check out his website for heaps more.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Post War Times are a band from the UK bearing more than just a passing resemblance to Foals with tinges of Friendly Fires. Of course too much of a good thing is still a good thing, and these guys have some really solid tracks on their recently released LP; The Greats And The Happenings. While Foals are the closest comparison I can make, that's not to say that the whole album sounds the same. Heaps of changes in tempo and style throughout and well worth a look.

Den - Post War Times
Whole World On Its Head - Post War Times
From Mystery Jets' Making Dens US re-release; (renamed Zootime), Crosswords is a more dancey number than the rest of the album, and a few years on is still really rather unique against their body of work. I had a mixed copy of this song for so long that was only two minutes long and spent the better part of 2 years trying to track it down. I then gave up for a while, only to finally acquire it recently.

Crosswords - Mystery Jets

Little Red have shifted their sound from an Indie Rock identity to a more 50's/60's Surf Rock sound. Think Beach Boys and you'll have an idea what to expect. This track is from their Coca Cola EP, which sports a striking bright red cover and the iconic Coke typography. Really cool.

It's Alright - Little Red
Laura Marling is one of the closest sounds that i've found to that impossible quality that Kate Nash possesses. In fact, New Romantic could easily masquerade as one of Nash's songs due to the subject matter and sound. This one is from her My Manic And I EP.

New Romantic - Laura Marling
Alphabeat have a new single, called The Spell. It's very 90's in sound; think of the poppy Dance music of the era and you'll know what to expect.

The Spell - Alphabeat
From Metronomy's first album, a far cry from the band you may or may not know now, is an instrumental track called This Could Be Beautiful (It Is). I'll also throw in a new song of theirs, the title track from the Not Made For Love EP. Not Made For Love is vastly different from This Could Be Beautiful (It Is) so if instrumental songs aren't your thing don't let that stop you from grabbing this one, it's a tragic song about two people wanting very different things from each other.

This Could Be Beautiful (It Is) - Metronomy
Not Made For Love - Metronomy
That's all folks.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


The Horrors' new sound still takes me by surprise every time I hear their latest works. It's the very best way to be proven wrong when an band you wrote off as rubbish comes out with a fucking amazing album to put you in your place.

Whole New Way was originally on the Japanese release of Primary Colours as a bonus track, but the band have decided to rework and re-release it as a stand-alone single. It very much continues the trend set by the band's critically acclaimed sophomore album, with a tad more electronic elements, especially at the start and finish, to lead you in and out of the song.

Here's the thing though, I can't tell whether I like the original or the re-release version more. There are subtle yet noticeable differences, but neither is convincingly better than the other. In the interest of not removing all reason to buy the new version, which I'm sure will come with B-Sides and or remixes, I'll going to post the original version here.

Whole New Way - The Horrors

Whole New Way is due out November 2nd on XL Recordings. Make sure you pick it up.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Tell you what, I'm really liking this new Vampire Weekend. Horchata is the first single from their upcoming sophomore album, Contra, and it takes a very chill, laid-back approach. It has a very tropical holiday feel to it, and while at first it may seem like a strange departure from their usual sound, by the end of the song you can't help but want to play it again. Rubbish album cover though, this chick looks well scary.

Horchata - Vampire Weekend

Monday, October 5, 2009


Tegan And Sara are very close to the release of a new LP after their best album so far, The Con. The first single, Hell, sounds like it's a step in the right direction, with catchy electronic undertones and a bigger focus on a rocky direction than previous efforts from the duo.

First impressions in the opening riff of the song are dangerously close to a bad Paramore track, but give it a chance, it's a grower.

Hell - Tegan And Sara
Los Feeling by Visitor is one of the more promising Electro-Pop releases I have heard in a while. Hyped ad nausem by most of the blog universe; i've taken my time with this one in order to decide whether it's worth posting or just a one off success from the band. My final conclusion is who cares; this track is the shit. Don't let the cheesy sound and the off-putting intro bring your opinion of the song down, because you'll have this song on repeat before long. And no, after all my investigations, it seems the real name of the song ISN'T "Lost Feeling", although it really seems like it should be.

Los Feeling - Visitor
HORSE SHOES have that melodic Indie sound that is becoming increasingly popular as of late. Similar in sound to bands like Red Riders, Mercy Arms, The Drums etc. The Imperial School almost sounds a bit like Tokyo Police Club in parts, definitely worth checking out.

The Imperial School - HORSE SHOES
Ultra Violence And Beethoven sounds like an incredibly distorted mix of MGMT and Passion Pit, with a far stronger electronic presence than both are known for. It's the first song I have heard from Baby Monster, so here's hoping the rest of their work shares the same amount of polish.

Ultraviolence And Beethoven - Baby Monster
Speaking of bands that sound like Passion Pit, Tim And Jean take that sound and use it in the best way possible. The end result is a song that, while not as mindblowing as Sleepyhead; may just be indicative of a band that can use the same sound without writing about the same tired subject matter over and over. Colour me intrigued.

Come Around - Tim & Jean
Bye Bye Bicycle are a strange band to place, they sound like an amalgamation of a whole bunch of different bands and sounds. I can tell you that if you like bands such as Sparkadia or New Order you'd probably like the sounds of Haby Bay.

Haby Bay - Bye Bye Bicycle
So once you're done "sampling" this music, go buy it. Don't be a prick.

Sunday, October 4, 2009


So it seems like people are finally feeling the waves of hype Brooklyn-based band The Drums have started to generate. This is both a good and bad thing because while yes, it means that they will receive the success they rightfully deserve, it also means that the most annoying fanbase imaginable will soon attach itself to the winning combo of 60's Surf-Rock and early 80's New Wave Indie.

So before you have to endure hearing teeny-bopper Sex On Fire fans singing all the wrong words to some of the best music I have heard this year, grab these tunes and share them with nobody.

Then buy the album when it comes out because songs these good deserve to be paid for.

Best Friend - The Drums
I'll Never Drop My Sword - The Drums
Saddest Summer - The Drums

Saturday, October 3, 2009


So I'm rediscovering my love for British Indie and British Indie-esque bands lately. This is due in no small part to the recent release of Jamie T's sophomore album, my belated but inevitable acquisition of Mystery Jets' Twenty One, and re-watching Skins Season 3 yet again.

Half In Love With Elizabeth (Delorean Remix) - Mystery Jets
Percussion Gun - White Rabbits

Actually from New York though.
So Tomorrow - Official Secrets Act
Conductor - We Were Promised Jetpacks

Take note Glasvegas, cause there's a way to sing with a Scottish accent and not be serious contenders for the "Most Unpleasant Sound In The Universe" award.
My Turn - Basement Jaxx

Makes it in because it features Lightspeed Champion, and for all intents and purposes is a Lightspeed Champion song. I actually prefer when they don't fuck around with guest vocalists' pre-established style in songs; another example of this below.
5 Verses - Jeremy Warmsley
It's Not The Things You Say -

One word; Kele Okereke.

As always, these songs are for sample purposes, buy the music or delete it.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Ok finally got some bandwidth back to search large images and the like online so here's another graphic designer/illustrator for you.


James White
(AKA Signal Noise) is an American graphic designer who has that retro futurism look i'm so fond of completely mastered.

Check out his Website for more.