Fucking hell. Liverpool. You’ve owned us. You took our lives, our freedom, our money and a sizeable chunk of our dignity. You also managed to hit us with at least two parking tickets. Sound City was a great shout. Admittedly it was less A&R Demolition – such is the phrase that ourselves and Sam Faulkner have coined following finding an actual sign in the surroundings of Austin during SXSW to indicate why our presence is even required at such inner city multi-venue music conference takeovers in any event (i.e. we’re here/there to buy other people’s shit, rather than sell our own) – and more Management/Label Domination, although we managed to find the time to see a few bits and bobs that made us real glad. In total, our collective remit (we love using that word, and managed to achieve our personal best performance of using it over 50 times in three days without anyone cottoning on to the frequency and indeed misuse of a word that could easily be supplanted by the metaphorical “umbrella”) had around 6 artists performing over three days. We think. We’re really struggling to think actually, and it’s probably due to hanging around Damien Yare (who we’re now referring to as The Yeayuh) who feels the need to get us drinking hard at 11.30am, and succeeded on at least one occassion. Anyway, the most frustrating thing after a four hour drive with three other sweaty dudes is coming back to a sun-drenched London with a terrible 72-hour-cumulative hangover, a lot of work to catch up on, and a desire to be outside with all the happy people. Bullshit. Hope you’re all having fun right now, bastards, because we’re hurting bad right now. To help us get over this, let’s talk about four peeps that we have yapped on about before in some capacity or another that have recently returned with new noises. Blam.
Now, it has been some time since we bigged up London homebrews Honours, courtesy of previous Track Of The Day effort Ready To Run. We really can’t be too sure when that was, particularly given the state we’re in at the moment. Don’t make us check. Other stuff has happened since then. They decided to share the aforementioned track in a record-releasey type format through our own New Moons compilation series. They then played support to Laurel’s first London headline show back in January. As indicated by the rather elaborate-noir and tastefully-angled shot above, they also ended up supporting The Family Rain and a bit later on Twenty One Pilots, which was nice. We’ve got some other news to spill on your lot about them later on this week. So, they’ve been busy. Bit like us really. In, around and amongst all of that, they also found the time to whack together this rather beautiful video for a new track called Blue Light. The clip itself featuring a big-ass bonfire in the middle of the sticks is particularly poignant for us, given that the last bonfire outing we attended was somewhat traumatic on several levels; perhaps this is indicative of a desire to burn oneself down to ashes so that that oneself can start things over afresh. Anyway. Watch. Get deep.
Let’s be honest. If you call yourself an avid fan of new music in one capacity or another – whether you’re a spying A&R monkey checking out these posts for something relevant to say in your weekly meetings, or indeed someone who just generally goes around repping the new shit – if you’re not behind the bearded musical behemoth that is Jack Garratt by now, then you’re simply not worth knowing. Sure, that sounds arrogant. It probably is. But really it is an expression intended with the utmost confidence that this guy is one of the most exciting new artists around, and has the strong-looks, the voice, the track and now the live show to back that shit up; we guess the word we’re looking for here to embody what we’re really on about is “inspirational”. Indeed, at Jack’s debutant unveilment of his multi-instrumented solo live show supporting Dan Croll at The Scala around about a month or so ago, the performance previous Track Of The Day I Couldn’t Want You Anyway inspired us to deal with certain millstones personified that were hanging around our proverbial neck for some time. The intensity of the live performance wasn’t a fluke either; people were left with thier jaws landing firmly on the mahogany floor of The Leaf Cafe in Liverpool a few days ago when Jack brought his shit to Sound City much in the same way as they were at the aformentioned show. New offering Water has been played about a bazillion times in the last 6 days since being appropriated by the blogger massive and was last seen knocking about the top spot of that Hype Machine chart thingy that y’all seem to give a lot of fucks about. It’s actually impossible to not feel like a bad-ass whilst imbibing this uncategorisable slice of musical genius.
Jack Garratt – Water
Another blast from the not-too-recent-past comes in form of a new offering from London bunch Dios Mio. We know we definitely wrote about them once, probably about the power-guitar lead anthems that are Lions and Tough Crowd. We think we put them on for a live show as well. You may think we’re being deliberately difficult right now, or just generally putting on this “we don’t really know what’s going on” sort of act, but the honest to god truth is that it hurts to think this much right now. You’re just gonna have to deal with it. Ahem. Anyway, these kids are back in all their snarly-faced glory and have a new track by the name of Stories to show for it all. We dig. If you’re into your pretty-vocalled indie power-pop, you very well may dig too.
Dios Mio – Stories
We had the distinct pleasure of seeing the lovely Lyves at the last Killing Moon show at the Barfly a couple of weeks ago. We’re not quite sure why we’re lamping the recently-surfaced Visions into a Second Stab situation. We think we’ve written about the protagonist before, but she was called something else then. Ben Ryder-Smith knows. Ask him. Ask him everything. Anyway, this is just-shy-of-four-minute’s worth of ambitious awesome, to the extent that we don’t feel the typically instinctive need to list a bunch of comparisons (which we’ve only just realised we’ve managed to avoid doing entirely in this whole write-up, which is surely a first for us), mainly because we feel that they probably wouldn’t do this justice. Just listen.
Lyves – Visions