This week sees the return of Stoke Newington’s finest dream pop outfit, along with one of the greatest collaborations of the year, Getintothis’ Matthew Wood reveals all in another Singles Club.
Single of the Week
Gengahr – Carrion
Two years on since their debut album, A Dream Outside, a finely executed slice of darkened dream-pop, Gengahr make a hotly anticipated return a little bit older, wiser, and a few shades darker.
Carrion embodies all that secured the Stoke Newington quartet their early success with swathes of euphoric guitar, heavenly, lilting vocals and fantastic energy.
Gifted lead-guitarist, John Victor is a mesmeric performer, often segueing between manic technicalities and addictive psych-pop melodies as he does superbly in this new track, with his heavy brush strokes securing another irresistible chorus.
Front-man Felix Busche packs more of a punch from the off with an obvious change of vocal approach, but it isn’t long before that shimmering falsetto comes into play, as we’d all hoped it would.
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard & Mild High Club – Countdown
Arguably one of the most prolific, hardworking acts on the planet right now, King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard have released three full length albums this year alone, their third seeing them pair up with the mind-ending Mild High Club.
The resulting partnership takes heavy influence from Miles Davis‘ 1960 record, Sketches of Spain, hence the title Sketches of Brunswick East,and delves deep into the world of improvisational jazz. Long-term provider of Gizzard animation, Jason Galea works his magic once again with a flow of ‘sketches’ to accompany the squelchy synths and effortless complexity of super-mellow track, Countdown.
Take a blissful swim with two of the most creative projects out there; strength in numbers indeed.
Dead Circus – 4AM
“This is my 4AM/ When that feeling comes again/How was your 4AM?” croons one half of Dead Circus, front-man Tom Odell, his vocals arriving like ghosts through a dense fog, dark and brooding. Comprised of Odell (guitar & vocals) and Ben Winstanley sculpting beats and electronics, Dead Circus have been hard at work crafting gloomy, electronic pop from their shed/studio at the bottom of a garden in Wigan.
4AM arrives alongside visuals from Dull Life Productions (Andrew Lea) documenting the hazy hours when rumination sets in, emotions shift, and the only one yet to come up is the sun. Sourcing influence from the likes of Jamie XX and Tom Furst, Winstanley’s electronica utilises soft, ethereal synths and crisp, thumping beats to suit the melancholic mood with a pensive yet perfectly dance-able finish.
Gregg Kowalsky – L’Ambience, L’Orange
Producer of ambient drone music, Gregg Kowalsky is a master in the artistic production of sound.
Influenced by iconic figures such as Steve Reich and Maryanne Amacher, Kowalsky similarly adopts unconventional recording processes and unique live performances.
L’Ambience, L’Orange is his first record since 2011’s Battery Townsley, which was recorded in a WWII coastal bunker of the same name, using ten different tape recorders. His latest outing takes a more conventional approach, but is equally as awe-inspiring.
Kowalsky produces almost tangible bursts of dark, massive synth that could accompany both the beginning and the end of time. Over this impending black hole,the New York-born producer layers melodic flurries that skip and flutter across the service like leaves disturbed by the wind.
Lomond Campbell – Every Florist In Every Town
Having recently signed to Heavenly Records, Lomond Campbell is tipped for big things in his coming years. The Scottish singer-songwriter made a transition from the hustle and bustle of Edinburgh’s city centre to a tranquil spot beneath the highest mountain in Britain; Ben Nevis.
He documents this transition in his record and his tracks have an organic feel to them, at once celebrating solitude and yet ablaze with a warm welcoming energy. Brooding strings combine with Campbell’s gentle vocal and occasional sunny glimmers of slide guitar, mirroring a walk through a gloomy wood, while the sun infrequently glints through the trees.
Vilde – Just Visiting
Vilde, otherwise known as Thomas Savage is an Australian-born, Stockholm-based craftsman of alt-pop, and a prolific one at that as Just Visiting marks his 10th track in as many months and the finale of his Study Dance collection.
Travelling in a similar vein as Gengahr, it’s euphoric, shimmering dream pop with heavy psych foundations. Meaty, driving bass-lines glide like aircraft through the crystal synth backdrop, while Savage lays his enunciated vocals to sublime effect.
You can hear his full collection on Soundcloud.
PALM HONEY – Starving Hysterical Naked (Parts 1 & 2)
A real treat from Reading-quartet Palm Honey, set over two parts it’s by far the band’s finest and most devilish work. Harnessing the roaring, raspy grunge of The Wytches along with the mesmeric psych of Moonlandingz, Part 1 is marvelously heavy, fueled with jarring chords and jaunty rhythms.
Part 2 transitions into a bubbly, synth led chord progression, scuffed with frantic, space-age flurries and held together by a constant drone. Like Part 1, though, Part 2 pulls zero punches and it’s not long before a brutal blast of crippling guitar joins the experimental jam and it proves an effective use of dualisms; just as you settle into the track it undergoes schizophrenic shifts and catches you off guard.
Some of the guitar work in this is fantastic, also, not to mention the rest… full marks here for Palm Honey.
Michael Cera & Sharon Van Etten – Best I Can
Written for upcoming documentary, Dina, which depicts the blossoming relationship of a couple on the autistic spectrum, Michael Cera and Sharon Van Etten collaborate for an endearing track that arrives like a Mouldy Peaches track if they were shot through an early 90’s video game.
Cera‘s playful, buoyant synths join Van Etten‘s simple, nursery-rhyme style vocal delivery before some acoustic plucking takes the track down a folk-infused path where Van Etten is truly at home. The hook is, again, chocked full with the joy of childhood and although this might not hit the charts, it’ll transport you back to the good old days of ‘play time’.