Words: Karl Johnson | Photo: Simon Thompson
‘Heavy Horse Museum’ (Glasshouse Records)
New single ‘Heavy Horse Museum’ sees London septet For Breakfast re-enter the fray after a few line up changes, they bring an emotional heavyness, a collective instrumental power and one hell of a psych-fuelled, out-of-body experience. Part of the beauty of For Breakfast is how they side step genre tags, letting their sound drift between influences and working on feelings and a cerebral experience rather than putting down heavy markers in a specific area. When the vocal does kick in, it haunts and peers through the cracks in the sound, bringing life and atmosphere to the warped instrumental vision. ‘Trapped in the Big Room’, the band’s sophomore EP arrives May 20th on Glasshouse Records, in the big room with the big band is where we want to be.
‘Deep Dive Brain Dive’
Whether expressing themselves through driven, technicolour electronica or through slow-burning atmospheric builds, Pushpin have honed their sound to something immersive and psychedelic, choosing the element of surprise and sonic ambition as their weapon of choice. On ‘Deep Dive Brain Drive’ the London band venture further into experimental new territory, exploring jarring electronic textures and in your face apocalyptic-disco breakdowns – but this wouldn’t be half as exciting if it were not for the glacial, and vocally magnetic indie rock builds that proceed it. Undoubtedly a fitting soundtrack for the last 5 minutes on earth, Pushpin show us again why their upcoming EP ‘Picnic’ – due April 12th – isn’t one to be digested lightly.
‘So Excited’ (Fire Talk)
Wait, what happened to Ought? Too late my friend, they’re finished. But for those who’ll miss the soothing tones of vocalist Tim Darcy, at least we’ve got the exciting prospect of Cola – who’ve set the date for their debut album ‘Deep in View’ (May 20th). New single ‘So Excited’ is a sound of two halves, the first an instrumentally rigid and barbed guitar attack with free-flowing bass, the second is Darcy’s subtle and laid-back lyrical flow. As you’d expect with this project, the hooks are subtle and the beauty lies within the relationship between the members themselves. ‘So Excited’ recalls ‘I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose’-era Bombay Bicycle Club, circling back to the pure moments of guitar music loved by fans of 00’s indie heads. Cola consists of Ought duo Time Darcy and Ben Stidworthy and U.S Girls/ The Weather Station drummer Evan Cartwright.
‘Beep! Beep! Honk! Honk!’
On their debut, London newcomers Dog bring a maze of influences, the whole track feels like a race or a joyride, a thrill of the chase. There’s a tangible sense of fun and a playful nature to the track, like Junkyard-era The Birthday Party if they’d have just lightened up a bit or even just enjoyed each other’s company. The track gives further detail on each listen, deadpan vocals tick the Ian Dury boxes then move into spine-tingling house of horrors territory later on. Fizzing synths provide sonic speed bumps to the relentless momentum of the sound as we’re treated to an indulgent guitar and sax dual/ breakdown which could put King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard or Viagra Boys out of business – ‘Beep! Beep! Honk! Honk!’ is five minutes of intrigue and left-field thrills that oozes personally.
‘Punch & Judy’ (Hideous Mink)
If you’ve ever wondered about the love story behind the violence at a Punch and Judy puppet show, look no further than the debut single by South-East London folk outfit The Winches. Maisy Banks’ hypnotic vocal unpicks the tale of violence and explores the darkness and relationship between this classic puppet show and its relationship with young children. Banjo, flute, fiddle and guitar underpin the instrumental track, which brings a freshness to classic storytelling and the folk genre. Vocalist Maisy Banks states, “I didn’t know it at the time but I think the tale of this toxic love affair marks the sort of transition that happens around that age from the innocence of youth to the first realisations that often all is not what it seems.”