Tuesday, June 09, 2009

AEC Monthly Missive (missed)

So I submitted an AEC Monthly Missive that didn't run in TheTripwire. But I don't want it to totally be for naught. So I'll print it here instead. Some of this stuff I may have covered here before, and some of this might even be a bit out of date by now as well, but hopefully you will still enjoy.

Welcome back to another installment of the AEC Monthly Missive. One of the things we struggle with each month is where to draw the line. We want to keep everyone up to speed on things we see and hear from the UK, but we don’t want to bore you with bands/music/news, that you may already know about. We’d love to be strictly for the “headz,” but we are also here to help teach the uninitiated. So this month, we figured we would split it up.

For those in the know already, some of these releases/ bands might be old hat. But in case you don’t know them, here are some current basics that folks are chatting about.

La Roux- We sadly missed her NYC appearances a few weeks back, but we have honestly been impressed by La Roux. She walks the line of pop and critical darling carefully, and in the end, the tunes stand up to inspection. We had the feeling it would be all hairdo and major label bluster, but we were wrong. Quicksand will be a 2009 staple.


Bat For Lashes- We dug BFL last record and tour, but Natasha Khan has since added Charlotte Hatherley of Ash to the live band! The tunes are still solid and the live show is getting loads of praise. This will be the band your parents will hear about by the end of the year.


The Horrors- We admittedly disliked the Horrors debut. For our taste, they just seemed to be lacking the bite, and even the bark, and basically only had the fur and the howl. But the band had Portishead’s Geoff Barrow produce their latest record, and it seems that he has had a serious impact. Much tighter sonically, spacious and cooler, the Horrors just might be able to deliver on their earlier promises.


Jarvis Cocker- Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker has always been a great personality. His music has also always been insightful and smart and cutting, but rarely has his work been considered “rocking.” He just changed that. Jarvis’s new song, “Angela,” proves he can rock with the best of them, pulling out his best mod stomp to date. If this is what we can expect from his next LP, we absolutely can’t wait. Get the track free at his site now.


The Specials- Reunions are so de riguer, and often from acts that haven’t even waited long enough to make us want them back. Not so in the case of the Specials. The reunion has caused plenty of noise overseas and folks are freaking out (including Fred Perry: http://www.fredperry.com/thespecials/) Playing all the old tunes at small venues and still killing it live, we can only hope they make it to our shores for a few dates.



As much as the above acts already have plenty of attention, we think we should spend sometime on folks that are so far under the radar as well.

Big Pink- “On 4AD, and produced by Alan Moulder.” In theory, that’s usually enough to win us over, but The Big Pink also have great tunes. Dark, loud, noisy and smart, we have the feeling this release could be a big difference maker this year.


Tom Allalone & the 78s- Most folks know we have a serious penchant for pure and simple rock and roll. Obviously, so do Tom Allalone &the 78s. They’ve got great outfits, great hair and flawless rockabilly, straight outta Kent. Check out the first single, “Hell Hath No Fury” and the new record, Major Sins Pt. 1, just released in the UK last month.


God Help the Girl- Stuart Murdoch is not an unknown, but the leader behind the iconic Belle and Sebastian camp has a new project that is still flying below the radar. His new project is called God Help the Girl and won’t be released until late June, but is worth seeking out right away. It’s shimmering 60s pop feel is balanced by it’s heady fake movie soundtrack concept keeps it brainy and interesting.


The Enemy- For some reason, this trio has somehow slipped the American anglophile consciousness. We saw them last year, and their Jam/Oasis/Clash style blew us away. Tight musicianship, great stage personality and plenty to say as well, these Coventry boys just released their sophomore effort in the UK. Hopefully they will have a chance to hit the States this time with a bit more support.


Dizzee Rascal- On these shores, Dizzee had his moment but has since been somewhat forgotten. We just heard his new single, “Bonkers,” produced by Armand Van Helden, and were immediately reminded how great he can be. The rhymes, attitude and raw sounds are all there, and immediately beg for the track to be heard thru giant bassbins. Straight up CHOON.



And finally, The Mighty Boosh has finally made it to the US.! Adult Swim has picked up the insane show, and thankfully given us something to do late on a Sunday night. There’s no point trying to explain the “plot” of the show, but if you are into the Adult Swim vein of comedy, and are a fan of such bands/musicians as Razorlight, The Horrors, Towers of London, Gary Numan, and Roger Daltrey, then this is the show for you. Obviously we love Noel Fielding (close friend of Russell Brand’s), but we also must admit that we have a total soft spot for Bollo the gorilla and Naboo the Enigma. Don’t ask, just watch.


Til next time.

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