Claire Sawers

Freelance Writer

Category: Music previews (page 1 of 2)

David Byrne – Edge Festival Edinburgh

The List
Edinburgh Festival Guide
13 July 2009

 

Former Talking Heads leader returns to his groundbreaking collaborative roots Continue reading

Simian Mobile Disco

The List
25 June 2009

Simian Mobile Disco

Simian Mobile Disco might regret the name, but Claire Sawers finds they’re serious about good tunes

‘We like our live shows to be a more austere, leaner version of our studio stuff,’says James (Jas) Shaw, one half of techno-pop duo, Simian Mobile Disco. For their recent crowd-rocking show at Primavera, Barcelona, laser lights and smoke provided an electric-blue backdrop to pummelling techno and infectious pulsing synths. They hope to pull off a similar spectacle at T in the Park. ‘Laptops can be a real barrier when you perform,’ he says. ‘The crowd can’t see what you’re doing, which makes for a really static show, with no real connection between you and the crowd. We make a point of using a lot of gear onstage; analogue synths, drums machines, whatever kit we add along the way. The show’s based around a lot of hardware; it’s very tactile, chaotic and fun.’

He describes their ice-cold, throbbing electro as music ‘made to be played out’ and is proud their show evolves from gig to gig. For upcoming album, Temporary Pleasure, follow-up to their 2007 debut Attack Decay Sustain Release, their approach was slightly different, though. ‘Albums are not designed for clubs, so it has to work quiet. We’ve concentrated on more melodic, harmonious aspects and we hope it’s got deeper and more techno-ier.’

So the first single, ‘Audacity of Huge’ features the trademark broken record vocals and urgent bleeps, but with a poppier edge – and lyrics about Bill Murray, Bob Fosse and butterscotch. ‘It’s too soon for these to be crowd pleasers, but hopefully they will be in time. Until then, we’ll be playing ‘Hustler’ and ‘It’s the Beat’ for our fans.’

As for their growing popularity since SMD began four years ago, Shaw laughs, saying it’s all been totally unexpected. ‘If we’d known we were going to get big, we’d definitely have picked a less annoying name, don’t you think?’

http://www.simianmobiledisco.co.uk/

Slam Tent, Sun 12 Jul. ‘Audacity of Huge’ is released on Mon 3 Aug, Wichita Recordings. Temporary Pleasure is released on Mon 17 Aug.

The Big Pink

The List
2 April 2009


 

 

 

 

Milo Cordell and Robbie Furze have come a long way since their days of running club nights in a disused horse hospital in Islington. ‘We were both really into industrial noise,’ says Cordell. ‘Just noise. Like kkkssshhh. Kkkrrr. Distorted noise. For hours,’ he laughs. ‘We’d get all these freaks coming in, like something out The Matrix with long leather coats. Everyone just stood about rocking and drinking cider.’

The friends went their separate ways – Cordell set up indie label Merok, introducing the world to the glassy, dirty disco, electro pop-noise of Crystal Castles, Telepathe and Metronomy – while Furze toured with his hardcore metal band, Panic DHH. And now they’re back with a love song.

‘Back then we were into making the most confrontational noise possible,’ explains Cordell. ‘Now essentially all our songs are love songs. We like to celebrate everything. Even love lost. We write about feelings – even the bad ones. Whether we’re happy, or we miss them, or we fucking hate them, we’re trying to cover all angles.’

‘Velvet’, their first single on 4AD (not Merok; partly because Cordell didn’t want his band to be seen as a ‘vanity project’), is a moody, deadpan slice of epic pop, with scuzzy guitars building a wall of noise over dark electronic beats, a bit like a shoegazy, spacey mix of Depeche Mode and MBV. Like last year’s debut, ‘Too Young To Love’, a dreamy, droney digital haze, they give a promising taste of what’s to come from their album, planned for September.

King Tut’s, Glasgow, Thu 16 Apr

Read the article here at The List.

Come On Gang!

The List
3 July 2008

‘I’m a nightmare on a train,’ says Sarah Tanat Jones, drummer and lead singer of Come on Gang! Continue reading

Camille O’Sullivan

The List
Edinburgh Festival Guide

22 July 2008

 

Smouldering, sassy, sexy songbook stuff from the dark angel

Sliding onstage in a red corset and heels, sipping a glass of red wine, French-Irish chanteuse Camille O’Sullivan likes keeping her audience on their toes when she performs. Continue reading

The Sadies

Metro
28 October 2008

Brilliantly named for a career in country music, Dallas Good and his brother, Travis, take turns fronting Canadian four-piece The Sadies. Continue reading

Errors


Metro

7 October 2008

Errors make no mistake electro

When this Glasgow band first got together four years ago, they wanted to sound ‘a bit like New Order’. Either they were being modest, or maybe they really didn’t realise how far-reaching their take on electro would end up being. Continue reading

Fujiya & Miyagi

Fujiya & Miyagi

Fujiya & Miyagi

Metro
23 September 2008

After their addictive 2006 album, Transparent Things, Brighton’s Fujiya & Miyagi returned last month with their third LP, Lightbulbs. Continue reading

Ratatat

Ratatat

Metro
27 July 2008

Previous albums from Brooklyn duo Ratatat have had a colourful, time-travelling sound to them, and their third, LP3 (released earlier this month), delivers more of the same. Continue reading

Santogold

Santogold
The List
17 July 2008

This genre-bending 32-year-old ex-punk has been proving the pundits right this year, after bringing out her self-titled debut album in May. Continue reading

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