Posts Tagged ‘saint marie records’

High Violets at Impose



Bloody Knives at Highwire Daze

Suffocating surrounded by a filthy poisonous haze. Drowning at the bottom of an icy lake with a brick tied to your ankle. Held hostage with a gun to your head. Bloody Knives latest record I Will Cut Your Heart Out For This exists in a world of forgotten places, the dark corners of empty cities, decaying buildings filled with vacant people, in the world of the lost and broken.

The album nods to the nihilistic abandon of the Birthday Party, the passionate desperation of The Sound, the dense filth of Merzbow, the electric disquiet of Christian Death, and the pummeling beauty of My Bloody Valentine. There are moments of intense beauty, of atmospheric filth, icy vocals, nasty synths, buzzing noise, pummeling drums and driving bass creating a feeling of moving at breakneck speed while standing still, of being comfortable lost in the chaos.

Adding Jack Ohara Harris (guitar), Ritchard Napierkowski (synth), and Martin McCreadie (synth) to the band’s already explosive live show has turned it into a chaotic decibel heavy experience, creating an intense ethereal atmosphere dependent less on pure volume and more on sonic density.

Recorded by Preston Maddox and Ian Rundell (Dead Space, Ghetto Ghouls, Xetas), then meticulously mixed and mastered by Adam Stilson (New Canyons, Airiel, The March Violets), the album is exactly as the band envisioned their sound being represented in a record, with fidelity unmatched by its predecessors.

Ambient, cryptic, unhinged, and ethereal, I Will Cut Your Heart Out For This is bold move forward for a genre bending band that already escapes definition.


Bloody Knives at Sound and Vision

Bloody Knives es como la versión enojada y súper agresiva del shoegaze (muy de acuerdo a su nombre). Desde su primer aporte en 2009 con su EP homónimo, pasando por varias entregas de corta y larga duración, le han dado al aire una densidad de notarse y temerse con voces que al menos en sus primeras entregas no se escondían en el ruido ni se susurraban; por el contrario incluso llegaban a escucharse como gritos muy rebeldes. Es, sin duda, una propuesta interesante y un poco diferente a lo que nos hemos acostumbrado en este género. Algo así como ver una riña entre A Place to Bury Strangers y Seasurfer.

Ahora están promocionando la salida de su tercera placa discográfica para el mes de abril, vía Saint Marie Records. Su título es I Will Cut Your Heart Out for This (¿Ven? Están enfadados con alguien) y hoy podemos anticiparlo con dos punzocortantes cortes que les harán hervir la sangre. Se trata de“Poison Halo” y “Reflection Lies” (videoclip). Disfrútenlos a continuación:

Click through to stream a track!


deardarkhead at Examiner


deardarkhead at Dagger

My initial thought was, “Damn….no vocals sooo… it’s an instrumental record?!” I wasn’t real happy, but after several listens I really like this. Oh sure, I wish they still had a vocalist (their previous vocalist Mike Amper left several years ago and has yet to be replaced)  but I’m not complaining (too much). This South Jersey band (from my hometown of Linwood…woot woot!!) have been at it since the late 80’s and have weathered all sorts of things that a band goes through (line up change, addiction to Cheetos, their official vehicle, a ’74 Pinto, contstantly breaking down, etc.) It’s still drummer/founding member Rob Weiss, longtime guitarist Kevin Harrington and Kevin McCauley on bass (the new guy though he’s probably been in the band for 5-10 years for all I know). The Captured Tracks label released a terrific compilation of early stuff a few years ago, but this is the bands first new material in quite some time. Their influence comes from all things UK  and if you dig bands like the Pale Saints or Ride then what the DDH boys do will be ok with you. Cuts like the excellent moody opener, “Falling Upward”, the icier Sunshine Through the Rain”, the varied “Ice Age,” are as good as anything the band has done previously and to be honest, there’s not a bad cut among these six tunes. If you’ve never heard the band before give ‘em a listen, especially if you’re an anglophile searching for some new juice. I’m happy to say that Strange Weather is just great.


Bloody Knives at Impose


High Violets at Drowned in Sound

Click through for the link!


deardarkhead at AllMusic

​Long-running New Jersey shoegaze band deardarkhead gives us an exclusive first listen, plus a track-by-track rundown of their new EP, Strange Weather. Now an instrumental act, the band delivers six new tracks of propulsive, psychedelic rock, with plenty of big, ringing guitars and driving drums. So press play, then scroll down for commentary from drummer Robert Weiss. Strange Weather is due out March 25 on Saint Marie Records.

When our vocalist/bassist, Michael Amper, left at the end of 2009, Kevin Harrington (guitars) and myself were unsure about the future of the band. Although we had been seeking the right person to replace Mike, we had no luck finding anyone that could hold a candle to him, let alone make it to the audition. By the fall of 2010, Kevin McCauley had joined as our new bass player and we were determined to move forward as an instrumental, three piece. We’ve always done instrumentals in the past, but the lack of a vocalist is a constraint that has forced us to work harder in order to make things interesting. The guitar has to do all the heavy lifting melodically and I think the songs have become more complex because of that. Ultimately we try and write songs that we find entertaining, so we like to change it up from song to song.

The great thing about instrumental music is that you can decide what the songs mean to you as the vibe is the crucial thing. Usually when we write, one of us will create a rough Garageband demo and present it to the rest of the band. After that we all work on the song together, exploring ideas, adding new parts and finalizing an arrangement. The finished song is an evolution of the initial concept and it’s a collaborative, creative process. The end result is often very different from where we started. You can hear some of the demo work at ourSoundCloud page.

“Falling Upward”

This track started off as demo that Mr. Harrington created. He typically records many different lead sections and subtle variations on a theme, which he then refines down to his final parts. This one immediately felt like the opener for the EP, with the long and building guitar intro. We ran that part through a filter effect and added in some further atmosphere using more effects on a whistling tube that you twirl around at different speeds to create different pitches. The driving rhythm of the song, coupled with all the different section changes, creates a trippy, disorienting, dynamic tension. When we play it live I imagine the floor giving way and everything falling upward.

“Sunshine Through the Rain”

The title of this song is named after a segment from Akira Kurosawa’s movie Dreams. It’s a bit like a dark fairytale. There is an old legend in Japan that states that when the sun is shining through the rain, the kitsune (foxes) have their weddings. They do not like humans observing their ceremony. I felt the dreamy Cocteau Twins-esque quality of the chords worked well with the imagery from the film, which ends unresolved, on a somewhat sinister note. This is one of the first songs we did after going all instrumental. The guitar leads in the middle make me think of a Bond song for some reason.

“Juxta Mare”

“Juxta Mare” is Latin for “by the sea.” I’ve always lived by the Atlantic Ocean and it has been an underlying influence on me since I can remember. It’s expansive, dark and mysterious. We’ve often used underwater imagery in the past and this song is no different. Mr. Harrington plays a 12 string on this track and I especially love the long leads that he plays during the middle of the song, which propels everything towards the climax. It has a bit of a Cure/Echo and the Bunnymen feel to me. It came out a lot more hard driving than I had imagined. I picture being in a small boat that’s tossed about by crashing waves, narrowly avoiding being dashed on the rocks.

“March Hares”

I’m huge fan of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and I’ve always been intrigued by the phrase “mad as a March hare”.

“A long-held view is that the hare will behave strangely and excitedly throughout its breeding season, which in Europe is the month of March (but which in fact extends over several months beyond March). This odd behavior includes boxing at other hares, jumping vertically for seemingly no reason and generally displaying abnormal behavior.”

Something about the pounding drum beat suggested marching or perhaps hopping wildly out of control, hence March Hares. It’s a bit unrelenting and somewhat anthemic in tone. The main part of the song is basically a blues progression, but with the guitar played in a droning, psychedelic, sitar-like manner it takes on a very different feel.

“Ice Age”

Not necessarily about a geological period of long-term reduction in the temperature of the Earth’s surface and atmosphere, but more of a personal cooling down. As one gets older, and hopefully wiser, the passion of youth settles down a bit. Things change, but that doesn’t mean you have to go quietly. I think that’s what it’s all about. The melodic bass line Mr. McCauley plays is a big part of the song. When we were demoing this, we kept adding more and more guitar leads toll the song just grew. It definitely has a dramatic, sense of urgency.

“Thinking Back”

Much like Falling Upward, this one automatically sounded like the closing track. Mr.Harrington worked tirelessly on this one, arranging and rearranging things till I was totally confused. There was a method to his madness though and I’m glad he persisted, as this is one of my favorite tracks. Going into the studio I was a bit nervous on this one, but I think it came out beautifully. It sounds shimmering, expansive and perhaps a bit nostalgic. It makes for great driving and sounds like classic DDH to me.


Blessed Isles at Austin Town Hall

Going far out on a limb here, but you’re probably not going to find a finer piece of dreamy pop music this week than that of The Blessed Isles. There’s so many elements within the confines of this piece, yet it all comes off as if it’s something so simple. There’s a wash of guitars looping, atmospheric touches and synthetic beats…and that’s without even looking at the polished softness of singer Aaron Closson. This track is sure to be a centerpiece of the band’s debut, Straining Hard Against the Strength of Night, but it should also be a centerpiece to those of you who adore the finer bits of pop music. Look for the album on May 20th via Saint Marie Records.


Blessed Isles at With Guitars

They say good things come to those who wait, and in the case of Brooklyn’s The Blessed Isles, the adage bears out. After five years of recording in studios across four states, the band stands poised to inject a much-needed dose of substance into the shoegaze bloodstream with their debut LP, Straining Hard Against the Strength of Night. Not satisfied to merely recreate the genre’s trademark textures, vocalist and guitarist Aaron Closson (The Hourly Radio) and multi-instrumentalist Nolan Thies (N?TIONS) put a premium on songcraft, fashioning melodies that seamlessly reinforce the telltale shoegaze soundscape. At their core, these are finely wrought pop songs that would shine in any genre, but are fully realized in the gossamer intricacies and stentorian pulse of Straining.