The Eyelet #27 BLEACHERS

BLEACHERS-triangle-face_0Words: Tom Morris Jones

Whilst on tour with FUN. Jack Antonoff has ever so kindly been writing the beginnings of Bleachers for our incredibly grateful ears. Inspired by the New Jersey sound of the 1980s where hair was big and hook lines were rampant, paired with his love of films by John Hughes in which soundtracks were unapologetically big, brash and brilliantly Pop, Bleachers are a band that aim to make music that can be artistic and imaginative whilst at the same time being equally important to mainstream culture without having to feel bad about it.

The two singles that are out now demonstrate this notion effortlessly. I Wanna Get Better puts to use synth lines that are reminiscent of a bygone era in which Synth Pop was created, coupled with an appropriately monumental chorus line. Rollercoaster, released only last week, wants you to choose it as your favourite summer anthem, and it has quite a compelling argument. It does this with catchy chorus hooks and captivating vocal melodies that will undeniably have you humming at your barbeque. If these two tracks are anything to go by then the album, Strange Desire, will be one to check out when it’s released on 15th July.

If Bleachers continue producing songs of this quality then the utopian idea that harks back to the 80s and 90s in which mainstream music and good music co-existed can yet be rekindled.

WEBSITE

SOUNDCLOUD

TWITTER

FB

The Eyelet #24 WE ARE CATCHERS

Words: Tom Morris Jones

 

wac

 

Looking across a sun-kissed Mersey rather than Malibu palm trees, We Are Catchers (aka Peter Jackson) revel in transporting the 1960’s sound of South California across the Atlantic and placing it firmly in Merseyside. Though the similarities between the two may seem far-fetched, sonically this long distanced route has accomplished something quite spectacular.

 

With the help of Bill Ryder-Jones, formerly of The Coral, We Are Catchers grasp the listener’s imagination and carry them on a sunlit voyage across the pond where they can dream about life under a bluer sky. Their new self-titled record (released on Domino last month) beautifully portrays this, with warm vintage piano sounds paired with wistful, echoing falsetto.

 

Here is a record that could quite easily have come about in 1965 and yet so elegantly takes its place in 2014 without sounding at all dated. Hopelessly romantic and effortlessly dreamy, it’s that nostalgic polaroid photo of summer by the seaside with the edges fading.

You can catch WE ARE CATCHERS @ District Saturday 19th April playing at the Anti Fracking Gig… check out the line up HERE

TWITTER

DOMINO

The Eyelet #23 MOATS

Words: Tom Morris-Jones.

 

Moats

On their Facebook, Moats are listed under the genre of ‘you decide’, and I wholeheartedly agree with this notion. The ambiguity of the bracket into which they should be put comes from their ability to combine raw, gritty vocals akin to King Krule with melodies that would make many a songwriter envious, creating a truly remarkable sound.

The band are fresh from a stint at Threshold Festival and have now set their sights on a European tour later this month, but will be gracing Liverpool again at Sound City playing East Village Arts Club on 2nd May. They have also recently won a NME competition to go play Austin City Limits Music Festival in Austin, Texas in October. All very encouraging.

Travelling across the pond they bring their brand new track ‘Snakepit’ which features menacing guitars, an even more spine-chilling bassline and lyrics that you can tell have been well thought out and crafted to perfection. However, the band are no one hit wonder, with their new official video for their song ‘Toothache’ managing to produce that similar sound that is somewhat indignant yet stimulating. Check it out here:

FACEBOOK

SOUNDCLOUD

TWITTER

BANDCAMP

The Eyelet #22 AS ELEPHANTS ARE

Words: Tom Morris-Jones

images 

 

 

Original, harmonious and often haunting, As Elephants Are are a band that are cementing their place on the flourishing convoy of rising guitar bands around the UK. Having released their single, “Crystal”, last October, while also bagging themselves a nomination for the Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition, they are now set to release a new EP, “Hand Prints”, on 31st March.

Their new single of the same name is a buoyant move towards a more upbeat and light-hearted sound. Obvious (and maybe lazy) comparisons can be made to a few current indie bands, but they themselves suggest that when writing they try to keep clear of any outside influence, creating their own eclectic sound which is distinctly unique. Whatever it is, it works.

Unfortunately their tour dates in the North West have been and gone, playing Manchester last Friday with only a few dates down South left. However, I’m sure you’ll see the band’s name on a few festival posters in the coming months.

SOUNDCLOUD

TWITTER

FACEBOOK

LASTFM

 

 

The Eyelet #20 ISAIAH RASHAD

RashadWords: Tom Morris Jones

When he signed to Top Dawg Entertainment in March last year, Isaiah Rashad saw himself rubbing shoulders with the likes of Kendrick Lamar and Schoolboy Q along with being involved in one of the most exciting rap labels at the minute. And now, associating himself with the most technically talented crop of rappers around, he’s found the inspiration to create Cilvia Demo.

 

On this record Rashad shows us why he belongs to the TDE crop who are known for their ability to combine modern rap with vintage sounds and styles. Cilvia Demo, named after his beat up ‘95 Honda Civic, does just that. Rough and raw but uniquely individual and engaging, it’s that beat up old car but with a new car smell.

The inevitable comparison will be made to Kendrick Lamar, but with this record Rashad proves that he can flourish even with that expectation on his shoulders. Thinking about that comparison though, Cilvia Demo is as much a revelation as Lamar’s breakthrough Section.80. The difference being that this time Rashad is on an established label and there’s also a good kid, m.A.A.d city to look up to and take inspiration from. Named HipHopDX ‘Rising Star of the Year’ and ‘Most Likely to Blow Up in 2014’ by Complex, it would seem Isaiah Rashad is not just a flash in the pan.

Cilvia Demo is out now.

SOUNDCLOUD

TWITTER

FB

LAST FM

 

 

 


 

The Eyelet #19 BANKS

img-2banks_121347260528.jpg_article_singleimageWords: Tom Morris Jones

With her otherworldly, atmospheric and dark R&B songs, BANKS quietly took the music industry by storm last year and is understandably eyeing up a chance to go even further in 2014.I, along with many, first discovered the LA based singer as a support act on The Weeknd’s European tour last year, in which she explained that she had only ever performed twice before getting noticed and called up for the slot. Talk about sharp rise to fame.

 

But her recent fame is more than deserved with her songs showcasing her marvellous, sultry voice to the backdrop of futuristic, slow synths. And these songs have paid dividends as last year she was nominated for the Sound of 2014 award by the BBC and was a MTV Brand New nominee. Two more reasons to check her out:-

HERNAMEISBANKS.COM

SOUNDCLOUD

TWITTER

FB

U.S.T – The ‘Eye

The Eyelet #17 SHY NATURE

SHYNAT We recently commented on how Circa Waves were trying to reinvigorate the rather neglected genre of ‘guitar music’ which was so ubiquitous in the noughties. This notion was backed up by George Ergatoudis, head of Music at BBC Radio 1, who stated only last week that he believes the British public’s appetite for guitar music is returning. And the band in this week’s Eyelet, Shy Nature, are an outfit that reinforces the notion that this slumbering cornerstone of the industry is soon to be re-awakened.

The exciting four-piece alternative rock band now reside in north London after originally meeting in Liverpool. Their songs revolve around delightful guitar and vocal melodies backed up by growling organs and drums and bass that bring the songs careering along. Combining melancholy lyrics about the pains of growing up with endearing,  buoyant music, this band hands you a stark and often confusing contrast that will find you dancing happily along to lyrics about our ‘messed up youth’.

Their new single ‘Lie Back’ was released last week off the back of a brilliant self-titled debut EP last September. Fans of music from Good Shoes, Mystery Jets and The Maccabees will no doubt love this band. See for yourself:

SHYNATURE.COM

SOUNDCLOUD

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

BANDCAMP

The Eyelet #15 KILLOTTO

KillottoWords: Tom Morris-Jones

The experimental ‘Visionary Environmental’ music of Killøtto radiates soundscapes that are probably unlike anything you’ve heard. His music provokes a myriad of images, with dreamlike and soothing synth pads, clear-cut and catchy vocal chops and an overall immersive sound that leaves you feeling both relaxed and invigorated at the same time.

 

This is primarily an experimental dance act, drawing influence from the fast growing plethora of experimental, post-dubstep dance producers such as XXYYXX, Mount Kimbie and Shlomo. The often minimalist recordings can change in an instant to create layered, dense sounding tracks that need to be listened to in their entirety to be fully appreciated. And you can do just that on his SoundCloud:

SOUNDCLOUD

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

 

 

The Eyelet #14 REIGNWOLF

Words: Tom Morris-Jones.

REignwolf

In this increasingly over-produced and auto-tuned music industry in which we find ourselves, the term ‘authentic’ has eroded into a somewhat meaningless buzzword. It is a word, however, that describes Jordan Cook, A.K.A Reignwolf, in its originally intended, pure meaning.

The no holds barred Blues Rock outfit’s music doesn’t ask for permission when it occupies your ears with its relentless guitar riffs and pounding drums. And with the band recently bagging themselves a support slot for Black Sabbath on their Canadian tour, Reignwolf are forcing people to take notice. If you’re into the fuzzy, distorted, raw sounding rock vibes of The Black Keys and The White Stripes then this is an act not to pass by.

The single, In The Dark, is out now.

 

REIGNWOLF.COM

YOUTUBE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

The Eyelet #13 KNOX HAMILTON

Words: Tom Morris-Jones

KH

 

 

 

 

 

If you ever find yourself listening to Knox Hamilton you’ll no doubt be hit with an uncontrollable impulse to dance like no one is watching. These Indie Pop/Rockers who hail from Little Rock, Arkansas, radiate energetic fun with bright high tempo drums matched with dazzling guitar motifs, emphatic choruses and luscious synths.

 This unsigned band has recently released their third EP, The Great Hall EP, and if you are fans of Phoenix, Two Door Cinema Club and bands of that ilk then it will be one for you. The nature of their standout track, Work It Out, warrants the feeling that it would not be out of place being reverberated from a car on a beach, used on a global TV ad, or even being sung by thousands at a stadium tour; it’s that good. Check it out:



http://knoxhamilton.bandcamp.com/

https://en-gb.facebook.com/knoxhamiltonmusic

https://twitter.com/KnoxHamilton

https://soundcloud.com/knoxhamiltonband

Until Such Time – The ‘Eye