Singles and downloads - May 4th 2010
Trying to be cool is often the death of decent music, so let’s avoid style mag darlings and delve into the hinterlands of good tunesmithery. First up are Glaswegian foursome Kassidy who look and sound like they’re from Big Sur circa 1972. ‘Stray Cat’ (Vertigo) ●●● is basically cheesy upbeat Americana, but the four-part harmonies and humungous chorus are also basically irresistible.
Next are Edinburgh somnambulists Eagleowl, whose ‘Into the Fold EP’ (Kilter) ●●●● is a haunting slice of Low-style slowcore, boy/girl vocals entwining around atmospheric folky strains to sumptuous effect. The Scottish Enlightenment plough a similarly gentle furrow, their ‘Pascal EP’ (Armellodie) ●●● shuffling along in a dream, echoey and half-asleep, but disguising lyrical bite all the same.
A tad more frisky are State Broadcasters, the Glasgow sextet’s ‘Dusty Record Collection’ (Electric Honey) ●●● is a perky slice of guitar pop a la Belle and Sebastian, although it’s a little lacking in melodic intent.
Defying their name, Sheffield duo Slow Club turn in a gloriously bouncy piece of 60s beat pop nonsense with ‘Giving Up On Love’ (Moshi Moshi) ●●●●, a song that cuts straight to the heart with a singalong chorus The Supremes would’ve been proud of.
Kicking it up a notch are the ferociously uncool Wildtype. An Edinburgh trio of long-haired noiseniks, they prove themselves unafraid of meaty noise on ‘The Combine EP’ (self-release) ●●●, cramming riffs and ideas into every second of a promising debut.
Staying on a rock ‘n’ roll tip we have Southampton three-piece Band of Skulls. ‘Death by Diamond and Pearls’ (You Are Here) ●●●● starts off like the Black Crowes with bees in their bonnets, then struts off in a Jon Spencer huff before swaggering back to chorus our asses off.
But just beating that to Single of the Fortnight are Edinburgh kids Your Neighbour The Liar. ‘The Michael Cera Type EP’ (self-release) ●●●● is a thing of shouty, jagged beauty, a confident piece of blistering math-rock which manages to bring to mind both Frightened Rabbit and early Biffy Clyro. That they only formed in November last year is, frankly, amazing.