Tag Archives: brit-pop

Dive In – Eighteen

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With all this raining hitting Sydney this morning, it kind of feels like dream-pop season should be in effect. Luckily, there have been a few stellar releases within the genre over the past month. One of the highlights have been a group of boys from Britain’s music festival capital, Glastonbury. They’re called Dive In and their new single Eighteen is basically the best.

It’s a bit of an ode to immaturity, that has a sense of juvenile fun and a lack of responsibility imbued into the vocals. Besides that, it’s a slick tune filled with fun, straight forward melodies and those sweet dream-pop style synths. As far as we can tell they’ve new to the scene but anyone who’s a fan of this style should get behind it, they’re going to be a thing.

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Matt Woods – Impression

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This minimalist piece with RnB stylings by solo artist Matt Woods is unreal. Hailing from London this guy takes after all the Triple-J-esque acts that scored so well on the Hottest 100 this year (re Chet Faker).  Interesting fact about Matty boy, he’s a former choirboy, who admits he enjoyed the commitment and has taken a lot of learnings from his classically trained days.

The track “Impression” is a shallow, heartbreaking arrangement delivered to perfection in this humble recording. It’s a much needed break from many of the up-tempo tracks to be released by some of my favourites artists this year, and composed in a way that could have you thinking he’s been around for years. All in all, the catalogue from this fresh artist is well seasoned and enjoyable.

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Circa Waves – T-Shirt Weather

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I’m just going to be up front in this short write up. This is, without a doubt, the best Circa Waves track to have been released to date. I know that’s a huge statement, I mean, “Stuck In My Teeth”, “Young Chasers”…”Get Away”! But I’m willing to put it all on the line for the newbie, “T-Shirt Weather”.

I feel like something they’ve been missing so far has been a moody twist on their brand of fast paced, shambolic brit-pop. This one has a sort of Wombats-esque twist to their standard form, bringing us something that has more longevity than perhaps a lot of their other songs do. I can see this being played over and over, and chanted and sung at parties until we have no breath left to give.

The debut album Young Chasers is out on March 20th, and available for pre-order now, so mark it in your calendars guys!

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ALBUM REVIEW: Catfish & The Bottlemen – The Balcony

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This article first appeared on The AU Review

Fans of the UK indie-pop scene rejoice, there’s a new “Next Big Thing” on it’s way. They go by the name of Catfish & The Bottlemen,  and they should be awarded this title with good reason. Illuminating the best parts of the old school Brit-pop alumni, circa Oasis, while booming with the freshness of current day colleagues like Artic Monkeys, their debut full length The Balcony is set to be released in Australia on the 19th of September and if I didn’t insist you pick it up this Friday I doubt I’d be able to look myself in the mirror again.

The musical saga that is The Balcony all begins with Homesick, the most perfect opener I’ve heard in a very long time. Guitars and vocals stalk an imaginary scene, setting up an album that references sex and alcoholism so many times you might think it was in fact frontman Van McCann who invented Rock N’ Roll.

While boasting sophistication in spades, The Balcony emulates a kind of British version of pub rock grittiness with anger infused throughout. It’s clear in the vocals of tracks like the previously released Kathleen, sweet with suburban working class spirit and confused emotional angst. The single, Cocoon merges the sounds of early naughties acts like Fastball, Travis or even further back to the aforementioned Oasis, with funky folk outlines surrounding the tale of a drunken adventure.

In amongst all the garage rock delight, Catfish & The Bottlemen sneak in some brilliant, straight-forward pop highlights in tracks like the emotionally charged Pacifier and the beautifully simplistic ballad, Hourglass. Towards the back end of the LP, songs like 26 and Sidewinder rough-house the playlist with stellar backing vocals and thrashing garage inspired guitars, while the 2013 single Rango brightens with familiarity and a little bit of folk.

It’s probably Business that really sums up the vibe of the album though. The lyrics glide with a kind of naivety and hopelessness, topped off by drunken shenanigans and promises of commitment. Guitars follow the vocals politely, melding to make a killer hook after killer hook. The whole act combines to really reach out through that one – and yes, Catfish & The Bottlemen, after listening I also want to make it my business.

All in all, The Balcony is a very solid and consistent debut from the Llandudno lads. One that sticks in the brain like TP to your shoe on a crazy night out. It’s all a bit disheveled but you’re enjoying yourself too much to notice or care.

*****

8.6/10

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