Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Ganglians - Still Living

The PR cycle that began in early May reached its zenith this bank holiday weekend with the release (finally!) of Still Living, the new album from Ganglians.

This hour-long collection of a dozen tracks average a shade under 4:40 in length each, making it good value for money on duration alone. But the purposely strained, mellow-yet-dramatic ensemble of music has more to offer than simply filling the time it takes to listen.

Evocative and distinctive, yet laced with influences that can be traced back through the decades, Still Living is described by Ganglians' Ryan Grubbs as "outsider music, but with a pop sensibility that brings everyone in". It is this collision of the niche and the mainstream that makes the collection particularly compelling.

Still Living - Ganglians

Monday, 22 August 2011

Dave Depper - The Ram Project

Dave Depper's latest production, The Ram Project, is the kind of concept many musicians would love to get their heads around. In fact, it's likely that quite a few have done so already, but their efforts never saw the light of day.

The album is Depper's own re-record of Paul McCartney's 1971 album Ram, credited to the ex-Beatle and his partner Linda McCartney. It marked part of the bridging period between McCartney's time in The Beatles and the formation of Wings.

Ram was originally released in both stereo and, unusually for a 1970s album, in a mono version as well. Depper's version pays its own homage to that school of thinking, as The Ram Project - while not lacking in production quality - has decidedly lo-fi elements and is likely to please fans of treble more than lovers of bass.

The Ram Project - Dave Depper

Monday, 15 August 2011

Hyde & Beast - Slow Down

Hyde & Beast's album Slow Down is out today, and it's well worth a listen if you haven't heard it yet.

This is a hands-on project for The Futureheads' Dave Hyde and Neil Bassett, ex-drummer with the Golden Virgins. Aside from the fact that these are eleven tracks of very personalised music, Slow Down is also out on the pair's own label, Tail Feather Records. The duo take production and writing credits on all but one of the songs - the exception is track 7, (And the) Pictures In The Sky.

It's also a very cohesive selection of songs, with its own strong identity, rather than the random array of styles that sometimes accompanies this kind of side-project when undertaken on a whim.

Slow Down (Bonus Track Version) - Hyde & Beast

Friday, 12 August 2011

Blitzen Trapper - Love The Way You Walk Away

Popsiculture's Free Music Fridays continues with this peek ahead at Blitzen Trapper's upcoming album American Goldwing.

Love The Way You Walk Away is available now as a free download - just click the icon at the right of the SoundCloud player below.

Alternatively, of course, you can just stream the track until the album is released, and then buy the whole thing in one go. It's your call.

Ganglians - Drop The Act, out August 22nd

Get your Friday afternoon off to a start with the first of our Free Music Fridays tracks, Drop The Act, due out on August 22nd by Ganglians, but available to listen to here and now.

You can stream the track using the player above, or head over to the Souterrain Transmissions SoundCloud page for more information.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Cher Lloyd - Swagger Jagger

Whether you blame it on hype or raw talent, the nation awoke this morning to its first week of having Cher Lloyd's Swagger Jagger at number one in the official singles chart. It's a curious event, as she never seemed to get to the top spot on iTunes over the course of last week, suggesting physical CD sales might yet play a part in deciding how the finished chart evolves.

Either way, it's a result that's likely to fuel the fire in fans' hearts, while annoying Cher's haters to fever pitch. I was (and still am) a Katie Waissel fan, rather than a 'brat', but many of the Warriors on Twitter seem to support both - and there's nothing really wrong with that, is there?

It would be fairly pointless to review a song that's been everywhere for the past few weeks in the usual way, so the below takes a bit of a departure from our normal format.
Swagger Jagger - EP - Cher Lloyd

Sunday, 7 August 2011

The Sound of Arrows - The Making of 'Magic'

If, like us, you saw and loved the video for The Sound of Arrows' latest release Magic, now you can learn a little about how it was made.

But don't worry that this will ruin the magic of the video itself - the mystical landscapes and creatures that appear towards the end of the song remain open to interpretation.

Instead, you can learn the original concept behind the video, and the way it was structured, as well as some more about its child stars.

Click play below to head into the imaginative world of The Sound of Arrows.

Magic - Single - The Sound of Arrows

Meanwhile, you can now grab Tom Staar's remix of Magic for free over at SoundCloud - it's got a bit more of a dance beat to it, but the wide-eyed wonder of the original track is somehow preserved. An excellent effort all round.