Posts Tagged ‘backseat mafia’

deardarkhead at Backseat Mafia

We’re delighted to premiere the new, second single titled Falling Upwards, to be taken from darkdarkdarkhead’s new EP Strange Weather, which drops on March 25th via Saint Marie.

Already having been the subject of a retrospective via Captured Trakcs, the band have continued to make slightly psychedelic shoegaze despite the band’s singer leaving in 2009. It’s just now that it’s this shifting, almost post-rock, slightly unsettling instrumental music, open to all its power and interpretation.

Falling Upwards displays much of that, with evocative electronics giving way to this shimmering guitar work that shifts and twists and morphs throughout. Check it out, here.

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Witching Waves at Backseat Mafia

Taken from their forthcoming album ‘Crystal Cafe’, out on February 26th via HHBTM Records (US)/Soft Power (UK), London trio Witching Waves have released a second single, Pitiless – aka Emma Wigham, Mark Jasper, and Ed Shellard.

Opening with this twisting guitar line, it soon unfurls into this driving indie rock gem, mixing up elements of Blondie (at their most New Wave) with a little bit of Sonic Youth. As it progresses though, so the guitars swamp the pop sensibilities into this rather wonderful feedback soaked wig out.

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Antlered Aunt Lord at Backseat Mafia

Sometime Tunabunny drummer Jesse Stinnard has recently released his first record under his Antlered Aunt Lord moniker. Titled Ostensibly Formerly Stunted and released on the HHBTM label, it’s a mixture of his own lo-fi and very much DIY recordings that Stinnard culled from a bank of almost 200.

His reputation (locally) as something of eccentric transports itself through the recordings of Antlered Aunt Lord, which at points seems to lean towards grunge/US alt-rock such as Sugar, but then veer towards The Beach Boys (check the harmonies on Monopilot), the next thing, this eclectic mix of electric folk and Pavement and Guided by Voices and, well, just about everything in between. The rough hue of the recording (more evident on some tracks than others) only adds to the charm as they somehow hold together as a whole.

Despite all of its frayed edge messiness, Ostensibly Formerly Stunted is more than enjoyable because of Stinnard’s quirky nature, his lyrical content, and his skillful handling of melody (damn, he can write a catchy tune) The only downside is that (as with a lot of these recordings) some of the songs are little more than ideas- Munsonfly and EPA are good examples. Enjoyable as they are, they could have been so much more.

When he gets it right though, the results are worth it. The brilliant Krautrock Motorik of Pray for Glam is brilliant, and Questions from our Publicist, apart from having a brilliant title, hints at 90s slacker rock, and is deliciously catchy. There’s some fantastic Pixies-esque loud/quiet interplay, with a liberal dose of synths in Hi Beam Hi Priest, and the weird Fall-like Sciatica is great.

With some 180 songs still in the vault, this could be the start of something big.

 

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SPC ECO at Backseat Mafia

Here at backseat mafia, were very proud to be able to premiere the new video from SPC ECO, Let It Be Always. As some of you (no doubt the hipsters)may know if that the band (pronounced Space Echo) is the project of former Curve member
Dean Garcia, alongside singer Eve Berlin.

The track is floating, blurry and beautiful experimental almost shoegazey pop, with the emphasis on sound and sound sculptures rather than straight up verse/chorus, and it’s all the better for it. The video is described by the band as being “inspired from the Berberian Sound Studio film, in that we
wanted to make something that sounded like it was recorded on an old
cassette tape machine. The video is a visual representation of what the
song is about which is feeling one way in one situation and then another
depending where you are and the loved ones you are with at the time. It’s
meant to depict a conflicted feeling of loss within yourself and how that
can make you question who you are and what you want.”

Click through for the video debut.

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Antlered Aunt Lord at Backseat Mafia

Antlered Aunt Lord is the project of Jesse Stannard, a singer songwriter who’s spent the last ten years in Athens, Georgia, making music on his own terms and his own agenda. Following whatever path he feels like (his ramshackle shows are legendary in Athens) HHBTM are putting out his first official release, Abandoned Car.

In keeping with what we know about Stannard, it beautifully scuffed, DIY song, full of this scuzzy guitar and mysterious, almost hidden vocals. Somehow though, it’s a thing that’s impossible to ignore, has a melody that gnaws away at you, and doesn’t even make it to the two minute mark.

We’re delighted to premiere the video for the rack right here on Backseat Mafia. check it out below.

Click through for the video.

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Stutter Steps at Backseat Mafia

Stutter Steps, the Pittsburgh indie pop six piece outfit, are today premiering their debut video Fog right here on Backseat Mafia. Taken from their forthcoming self titled debut album, it features Dean Wareham from Galaxie 500/Luna on slide guitar. Singer/Guitarist Ben Harrison met the indie luminary through his job at the Warhol Museum, where he devised a project where bands wrote music and performed scores for the Andy Warhol Screen Tests.

Fog is this rather lovely slice of americana infused indie pop. Its full of wistful melancholy, wrapped up in jangling guitars and this shuffle from the rhythm section. It got the sort of tune thats its very hard not to fall in love with, especially when its sugared with these beautiful vocal harmonies. So sit down, make a cup of tea, and luxuriate in Stutter Steps Fog.

Check out the similarly wistful video, with views of misty (well, Foggy I guess…) forests and scenery below.

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Presents for Sally at Back Seat Mafia

Taken from Colours & Changes, the second album from Bristol indie/shoegazers Lresents for Sally, we’re delighted to premiere the video for Wishawaytoday here on Backseat Mafia.

The track opens with this jangly, angst ridden guitar and soon unfurls into this shoegazey slice of glorious pop music, propelled by this thundering bass and these echoey, obscured vocal lines. It’s as if Ride and MBV were dragged through 4AD. Really, that good.

Check out the rustic video and keep an eye out for the album, out next week via St Marie Records.

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Pinkshinyultrablast at Backseat Mafia

Lets introduce the band that is Pinkshinyultrablast,  Igor on bass, Lyubov with  vocals, Sergey on drums, Rustam providing synths and electronics and Roman on guitars. From Saint-Petersburg in Russia. This is their debut album entitled ‘everything else Matters’

If you were ducking in and out of Indie clubs in the 80′s and 90′s this will send shivers up your spine. Those nights of dancing under beams of the club lights, eyes closed spinning around or gazing down at your shoes while rhythmically swaying back and forth are encapsulated here. While their sound champions the likes of Lush and Ride it’s crossover into areas of electronic music bring a fresh and vibrant feel that’s up to date.

‘Wish we were’ is the first track on the album and sets it all in motion, whirling vocals echo on a bed of held synth notes to be then greeted with warm processed beats. An electronic bass line begins and you wonder what’s in store as the music gains momentum in its build. A guitar riff  cuts in and we’re off. Crashing drums, reverberating guitars and the hauntingly beautiful  floating vocals says one thing, welcome to Pinkshinyultrablast.

‘Holy forest’ follows and is the standout track for me, infectious guitar licks,  angelic vocals and soaring melodies give an emotional ride. Its a wind in your hair, driving down the freeway with not a care in the world Indie anthem.

Throughout the album the blend of transitions from heavy to light in the arrangements play well together and the vocals are used more as an instrument of emotion than the main focus which works to great effect. Pinkshinyultrablast say they wanted to bring some life back to the Indie scene, well I think they may have just done that,  and a little bit more. A debut well worth tracking down

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Sleaford Mods at Backseat Mafia

There’s not a band around at the moment like Sleaford Mods. The Nottingham two piece deliver minimalist beats punk beats courtesy of Andrew Fearn, and the people’s poetry of Jason Williamson, at once commenting on the social issues that affect us all, at another full of enthusiasm and humour, has this startlingly abrupt brilliance about it.

They’re back with a new single, Litttle Ditty / I’m shit at it, out via Emotional Rsponce on Monday (9th February). The A side is taken from the bands top ten album ‘Divide and Exit’, and starts with this punkish bassline, as Williamson spouts his wisdom over the track, as the band prove once again they’ve got the ability to both make you smile and make you think. Flip side ‘I’m shit at it’ is once again that the band can work using even the most minimal of musical lines, their midland drawl.hovering over everything, as they extols the virtues or otherwise of being, well, shit at mostly everything, before this dark bassline and drum provides the backing for tales from the everyday ‘f***ing’ life (the mods own words).

The world needs The Sleaford Mods.

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Fishboy at Backseat Mafia

Denton Texas four-piece Fishboy are a band that like a story. If you’ve followed their career its been littered with story based albums, ep’s and 7inches, often accompanied by comic books that delve into the theme a little deeper. The album that started to get them noticed in the outside world was Albatross: How We Failed to Save the Lone Star with the Power of Rock and Roll, which followed the story of the ghost of Buddy Holly who teams up with the band in your everyday (well, maybe in the Fishboy world) tale of going on a crime spree / tour performing all the songs (chief songwriter) Eric Michener had written in his sleep since he was in the womb (all 8,030).

Now the band are back with a new album / wordless graphic novel based on, well, an elephant. Crucially though, its not just any elephant, but Topsy, the elephant famously electrocuted by Thomas Edison. Not completely new subject matter (think of Lucy Dysons brilliant animated video for All India Radio’s Persist), but the band have made good use of the story, or at least their version of it, which follows Topsy’s attempts to avenge her death and pass into the afterlife.

Opener Electrical Elephant sets the scene – a vehicle for Michener and his lyrical dexterity, tale telling, tall stories and scene setting, over this frankly (generally) lovely power-pop / indie rock. Its straight up, driving music, with something of the Los Campesinos! about it in places, slightly leftfield but essentially flowered with the kind of fuzzy bubblegum melodies that quickly get stuck to the bottom of your heart.

Both Thomas Alva waiting and ‘Elephant in the room’ follow a similar theme, the latter in particular being one of the albums melodic high points, a little splash of brass and feedback adding a little colour to the palette. Elsewhere on the album, Totes Parts 1 & 2 are both, in their own different way, lovely with just a hint of Eels and even Mudhoney as well as their own reference points (or at least that of the press release) Danielson minus the crusades and of Montreal minus the perversion and disco.

There’s many lovely moments on the record, the flash of emotion and anger in I’m a Ghost and the stuttering Bury My Body, but perhaps best is the heartbreak of the aftermath of Topsys death, beautifully handled in Bury My Body.

That they chose to shed light (no pun intended) on a story that deserves attention is one thing, that they’ve done it in such a thoughtful and in some ways unexpected fashion (not the banjo filled indie folk, full of pregnant pauses and faux sincerity I’d feared) is so refreshing. It’s a shame more people don’t know the story of Edison and Topsy, but it’d be even more of a shame if more people don’t hear this record from Fishboy.

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