Posts Tagged ‘joy of violent movement’

Blessed Isles at Joy of Violent Movement

Comprised of Aaron Closson (guitar and vocals), best known as a member of The Hourly Radio and multi-instrumentalist Nolan Thies, best known as a member of N?TIONS, Brooklyn-based shoegaze duo The Blessed Isles specialize in a sound that is heavily indebted to 80s Brit Pop, New Wave and of course, shoegaze; in fact, as you’ll hear on “Caroline,” the first single off the duo’s long-awaited full-length effort Straining Hard Against the Strength of Night, the band’s sound seems to draw from New Order, Slowdive and Cocteau Twins as the duo pairs Closson’s plaintive vocals with shimmering delay pedal fed guitar chords, propulsive boom-bap 808s, and ambient-like synths to craft a swooning and introspective song with an urgently anthemic pulse.

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Bloody Knives at Joy of Violent Movement

Initially comprised of Preston Maddox (bass, vocals, keyboards, samples and programming) Jake McCown (drums, noise, programming) — with recent recruits Jack O’Hara Harris (guitar), Richard Napierkowski (synth) and Martin McCreadie (synth) to flesh out the band’s live set, Austin, TX-based shoegaze act Bloody Knives have developed a reputation locally and regionally for a sound that meshes elements of punk, industrial electronica and ambient electronica with 8 bit glitches, bloops and bleeps; sonically speaking their sound is reminiscent of My Bloody Valentine, A Place to Bury Strangers, The Jesus and Mary Chain and others as their sound manages moments of punishing noisy bleakness with moments of sublime and dreamy beauty.

The Austin shoegazer band’s forthcoming, new album I Will Cut Your Heart Out For This is slated for an April 15, 2016 release through Saint Marie Records and the album is reportedly inspired by the “forgotten places, the dark corners of empty cities, decaying buildings filled with vacant people” — the world of the lost and broken.” The album’s first single “Poison Halo” will further cement the band’s reputation for crafting a gritty, punishing and yet dreamy sound as shimmering synths and guitar chords are paired with towering layers of feedback, a propulsive motorik-like groove and Maddox’s ethereal and plaintive vocals floating over an ominous and punishing wall of sound that gently yet insistently pushes the boundaries of what shoegaze should sound like.

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Witching Waves at Joy of Violent Movement

If you had been frequenting JOVM over the past month or so you may recall that I wrote about  London-based indie rock trio Witching Waves. Comprised of Emma Wigwam, Mark Jasper and Ed Shellard, the trio emerged from London’s DIY scene with a tense sound consisting of angular guitar chords, propulsive drumming and anthemic hooks reminiscent of 90s alternative rock as you might remember from “Twister” off the band’s latest effort Crystal Cafe. Sonically, the song sounds as though it draws equally from WireGang of Four and Sleater -Kinney — while lyrically, focusing on the contemporary, modern condition. And as a result, the song evokes the sensation of constant tumult, uncertainty and danger, desperate alienation, stagnation and misdirected anger. It’s being pissed off and not always understanding why or how — and not knowing where to direct it because you’re so angry all the time over everything and nothing.

Crystal Cafe‘s latest single “The Threat” has the band pairing scorching guitar chords, rumbling bass, propulsive drumming and anthemic hooks with ethereal and melodic vocals to craft a song that sounds deeply indebted to Pixies, 90s alt rock and toThe Mallard‘s exceptional Finding Meaning in Deference — in other words, the song is tense and bristles with an anxious frustration.  And interestingly enough, the recently released music video for the song is an equally tense and ominous video that follows a woman, who’s being chased by demonic creatures, who also perform satanic-like rituals.

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High Violets at Joy of Violent Movement

Currently comprised of founding members Clint Sargent (guitar, vocals) and Luke Strahota (drums), along with Colin Sheridan (bass) and Kaitlyn Ni Donovan (vocals, guitar), thePortland OR-based shoegaze quartet The High Violets can trace their origins to the breakup of The Bella Low, which featured Sargent, Strahota and another founding member Violet Bianca Grace (who left after a few early gigs). After a lineup change that resulted in their current lineup, the quartet released the their EP Dream Away, their full-length debut 44 Downin and their critically applauded third effort To Where You Are through Irish label Reverb Records. And as a result The High Violets saw a rapidly growing profile across North America as they played sets at NXNE in Toronto and SXSW in Austin, TX and then released a remix album, Satellite Remixes, which featured remixes from the renowned Ulrich Schnauss, Carmen Rizzoand others.  

Although the band is currently on hiatus from touring and live shows, they have remained active in the studio. The band’s fifth full-length effort, Heroes and Halos is slated for an April 1, 2016 release through Saint Marie Records and the album’s first single “Bells” has the band pairing layers of shimmering guitars and a propulsive and steady rhythm with Ni Donovan’s gorgeously ethereal and wistful vocals in a way that nods towards The SundaysHere’s Where The Story Ends” but with a cosmic glow that belies a subtly modern production.

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Presents for Sally at Joy of Violent Movement

Comprised of Matt, Anna, and Phil, the British shoegaze trio Presents for Sally has been deeply influenced by late 80s and early 90s shoegaze rock and alt rock, as well as dance music and hip-hop, which has not only expanded the sonic boundaries of shoegaze, it has also created some difficulty for critics trying to pin down who exactly their influences are. And yet, that should be a testament to how seamlessly the trio have meshed their wildly divergent influences.

Their debut effort, A Touch of Joy, A Touch of Sadness was released in 2010 to critical praise across their native UK. And the release of their “Anything Anymore” 7 inch, the band signed to Saint Marie Records, and began writing and recording the material that would comprise A Touch of Joy’s follow-up. And although it has taken several years to finish, the band has been productive of late, as they self-released a 7 inch last Christmas and will be releasing their long-awaited sophomore effort, Colours and Changes later this year. However, this summer sees the release of the “Wishawaytoday” 7 inch, which will serve as a teaser to the full-length effort. Seemingly drawing from The Stone Roses, the A side “Wishawaytoday” may be the most accessible and somewhat straightforward shoegaze track the band has released to date. Expect densely and interwoven guitars played through a number of distortion and effects pedals, and propulsive rhythms paired with distracted, almost disaffected vocals and soaring hooks that heighten the song’s ethereal feel.

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