Tag Archives: pop

Sans Parents – Loose People


Ex-Hungry Kids Of Hungary members formed Sans Parents late last year and have been cracking on with some awesome tunes throughout the past couple of months. The latest is entitled “Loose People” and sounds like a uniquely garage-recorded, indie pop delight.

This surely could have been a track out of an early 00’s college or high school movie. You can easily see it in one of those montages where the bad boy who is becoming good gets caught for whatever he planned at the start of the movie, before he truly got to know the girl. You know, where there’s a tonne of shots of each and how they’re so lost without each other during the less than twelve hours since she found out it was all a bet.

However you want to describe it, these guys are coming into their own and once they secure recordings that sound a bit more solid, they’ll be unstoppable on the Triple J chart-e-roons.

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Kid Astray – It’s Alright


I talk a lot about that Scando-sound on this blog. So many cool bands coming out of that area, but they are usually Swedish or the odd-mention of Finnish boys. But we have another inclusion here with Norweigan six-piece Kid Astray; these guys are truly something special. Sounding more like an LA or Brooklyn style indie outfit, they leave the staples of the deep north behind them and bring something beautifully different to the scene.

Their latest effort, “It’s Alright”, is a true summertime beat. Smooshed between wandering bass and a grounded beat is catchy as fuck synth outlays and solid, easy to get behind vocal lines. They’ve been around for a few years and this is my first outing with the group, but I’ll be keeping an eye on them for a new release. A very exciting Saturday afternoon find indeed.

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Satellite Stories – Vagabonds


Everyone’s favourite Finnish band, Satellite Stories have been hitting the airwaves with a few newbies of late in an exciting start to 2015. I’ll admit, there’s not a lot of Finnish acts that are that well known outside of their country, at least in Australia. But don’t let that take anything away from the incredible set that these guys have put together so far.

Their 2013 debut Pine Trails was an absolute masterpiece. Tracks like “Season of B-Sides” and “Campfire” as well as “Lights Go Low” were eerily similar to powerhouse indie band Two Door Cinema Club, proving their heritage wasn’t anything of a gimmick on this side of the world. Their latest off the new album of the same name, “Vagabonds”, is filled with pulsating guitar, rise and fall synth and beautiful sounding falsetto, fleeting through the track with confidence, while keeping the cold soundscapes we’ve come to adore from acts out of Scandinavia.

The album “Vagabonds” is out now via iTunes and for stream on Spotify.

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Kate Boy – Higher

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Kate Boy launched at a pretty sweet time for female indie artists. CHVRCHES had risen to fame, others like HAIM, Say Lou Lou and Chloe Howl has started to peak the interest of the bigger labels. But Kate Boy approached it with a thunderous, aggressive style of music that struck a unique chord on the indie blog-o-sphere.

This year she’s released a short EP with the lead single “Higher” beaming with anthemic bravado. Her classic deep female vocal style shines against thumping underground drums and bass and gliding synth. It’s a kind of new wave 80’s style and a great single right out the gate. Maybe after the success of all the aforementioned acts, this one might be the release to break out for this absolutely unreal Scandinavian act. I certainly hope so.

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Twin Shadow – I’m Ready


Brooklyn native Twin Shadow has always been quite a unique entity. His upcoming album Eclipse is one of the most anticipated releases announced this year, and the singles he’s released leading up to it have justified the excitement. Last week he released another of those singles, in the anthemic “I’m Ready”, a track whose complexity is masked with pop intentions.

The song, unlike the other releases so far, at least has a bit of structure to it. In the same vein of something like Bleachers, it sprays with a sort of eighties high school movie vibe mixed with inner city dreams. It’s a tragic love song and you can really, truly feel it when you listen. As someone who enjoys Twin Shadow, but is not exactly a crazy fan, I’d say “I’m Ready” is his best work yet. I’ll be listening for some time.

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Geographer – I’m Ready


 The first single off the upcoming album, Ghost Modern, is “I’m Ready” and it’s a sweet little pop tune with chiming synths and smooth vocal lines. Allegedly the last song to be written on the upcoming 12-track the song makes itself immediately known as a Geographer presentation, with unique vocals and minimalist pop.

Ghost Modern is set for release on March 24th via Roll Call Records.

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Natural Animal – Our Love


This one’s a newbie to me. But if BIRP vouches for them, they’re OK with me. I was impressed by a few songs in this months playlist, and Natural Animal’s “Our Love” stood out as a proper highlight in amongst the usual hit-and-miss style playlist. It’s a funky, straight forward tune liken to other Indie Rock Summit favourites like French Horn Rebellion’s “Caaalifornia”.

The Toronto based self-describe their stuff as “sex music” and plan to deliver a whole other bunch of pearlers within the coming year, so keep tabs on these guys.

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Yoko Kanno – ís (feat. POP ETC)


This track is absolutely unbelievable. Deep, droning bass lines and gasping hollow vocals, paired with the most incredibly on point harmonies flutter through the entirety of the track, making it into a truly inspiring number. I can’t really find that much about Yoko Kanno but POP ETC is a mastermind of catchy and likeable indie tunes.

If you’re looking to a contemplation song, “ís” is it. I’m not sure if this is a one off or off something to come. But it sure is special, and if it’s a one off I understand why. It would be very hard to top on a full length.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Clockwise – Dancing World


This article first appeared on The AU Review.

The latest EP from Australian-born, LA based artist Clockwise, Dancing World, is an unlikely arrangement. I say unlikely, because despite being labelled “Indie-Pop” on the ol’ Wikipages, if you listened to their collection here you would immediately peg the outfit as electro or synth-pop or another of those new-aged genres that continue to pop up in the wave of innovative, non-traditional acts that spout keys, synths and digital effects as the main feature in their musical arsenal. There’s a tinge of traditional indie or folk that shines through what is predominantly a dance record. It’s unique enough to earn it a tip of the cap, and a cheeky tag to keep tabs on as they continue to develop into a powerhouse act in years to come.

Strings permeate the introduction of this EP, in the form of the title track “Dancing World”, welcoming us to a five-track that is elegantly rough and streaked with attitude when combined in full. Vocals from the man behind the moniker, Andy Clockwise, spit with persuasiveness in between the staccato plucking of strings, samples of static guitar and wispy electronic samples, all contributing to make this a solid opener, setting the tone for the rest of the EP.

The deep, grumbling electronic bass lines in “Hopeless” take us into the urban soundscape of LA. As the moody vocal lines carry us through each verse, it contrasts wildly against the ethereal falsetto female vocals that break between the verses and choruses. It’s a tune spouting a theme of giving up with bravado. The type of messy, out-of-control stage before the clean slate, complete with beautiful falling chime synth chopping up the second verse. It was a good choice for the single on the EP, as it’s easily the most likeable and recognisable song on the EP. The outsider, “Murphy’s Law” begins with the best parts of indie. Carrying on with sounds that we may have originally heard from acts like Two Door Cinema Club if they collaborated with legends like Talking Heads. It’s a musical journey with a clear beginning, hardships and a solidifying end.

Every EP has to have the token softer song, although not always an acoustic ballad as such. Dancing World has two. “Steam Dreams” chugs along at a slow pace with emotive energy and those brilliant female vocals here to help again. It has a very old school feel that’s familiar and folk-like while shifting the format enough for the modern day music lover to take notice. We end on another slower track, a seven-minute doozy entitled “War Story Part One” (Part Two TBC). This concluding song builds on the whole electro-folk thing Clockwise have going on and absolutely nail it to the wall with their stamp firmly printed. If you stripped back the electronics it could’ve been a folk-epic back in the day, and it’s uncanny how much it kind of sounds like “You Are My Sunshine”.

Although I feel like the title “Dancing World” is a little misleading for an EP that is mostly crafty, delicious electronic folk tunes, some of it does have that head-bopping feel and I guess that’s what Clockwise has done with this effort. It’s a collection of positive, electronically tinged, folk / indie tunes that have an obvious feeling of a personal journey, or a personal state of mind. Whether you interpret it as your own or stick with the narrative, after finishing this EP beginning to end, you’ll have no troubles stepping into Andy Clockwise’s Dancing World.


8.1 / 10

Dancing World is available now for purchase through iTunes or streaming with Spotify.

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Dutch Uncles – Decided Knowledge


“Decided Knowledge” is a warped but somehow catchy tune, released in the lead up of the album, “O, Shudder” which comes out on the 23rd of February this year – an exciting development in the catalogue of English indie band Dutch Uncles.

They made critics give a cheeky nod in the release of their 2013 effort “Out of Touch in the Wild”, which showed the band pulling together a fully enriched style of prog-rock-ish indie that not many had heard before. “Decided Knowledge” still has all that wonderful 80’s, all-over-the-place style, while stripping it back a little bit to let some of the pop elements shine. It’s an unreal step in my own humble opinion and definitely one to keep on tab during February.

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