Ashleigh Wyatt of Little Desert and Red Red Krovvy is one of my favourite drummers. Several years ago she was in a group called Pop Singles, who sounded like many of the best pop groups from Australia in the 80s. While Wyatt has been buys in other bands, it’s been fairly quiet from their singer Tam Matlakowski. But now he has made their entire discography available for free on bandcamp, including unheard demos.
To mark the occasion, here are some snaps from the second time I saw them play, in Melbourne back in 2009. While you’re at it you should also check out Matlakowski’s solo album that came out late last year. Released under the name Tam Vantage, you might notice that’s the make of the 12-string guitar he’s playing in the photos above. It will reward you for your time.
And while we’re talking about Australian pop, I must comment that it’s still criminal that The Passengers never got to release this song. I can’t listen to it without shedding a tear.
Marina Tadic’s album with Eerie Wanda looks like it has been a long time in the making, considering the fact the video promoting Hum was posted in 2014. But Beyond Beyond Is Beyond have made good their word and finally released this album, which is a firm favourite of this year already. I’m so amazed by the track “Vinny” that I might even include in my DJ sets. You can definitely tell from the sound that some of Jacco Gardner’s group have been involved with the recording. Now we can only hope they do a proper tour of Europe.
Another of one of this year’s best records so far is the sophomore effort of MMOSS star Doug Tuttle. It Calls On Me is out via Trouble In Mind and is a great follow up to his self-titled debut. It’s mesmerizing, sparkling and bright and dull at the same time. Check out the Sparklehorsesque “Falling to Believe” below. I had to order these two records instantly – and actually they’re the first new albums I’ve purchased this year.
Here is a late find from last year – shockingly I did not know that one of my favourite groups The Intelligence had a new record out. I’d heard that the last one was going to be their last, but apparently not. Vintage Future picks up where they left off and even takes Finnberg back to slightly more experimental ground. It’s another classic In the Red release, with a great cover. Surprisingly, it made few waves. Surprisingly because it’s brilliant.
K Records revealed the first track from The Shivas’ new album several months ago – and the rest of the record is very much in the same vein. That is, more relaxed than we’ve become used to from this fantastic group. Better Off Dead is folky and jangly and considering all the sad things we’ve been reading about K recently, it’s something of a return to form. It’s probably also some of the last recordings done at Dub Narcotic studios, which Calvin had to sell off to pay debts.
The Higher State with Marty and Paul Messis have a new album, called Volume 27, out soon. Here’s a video for “The Worst of Their Treason”, the first song released to the public. The video looks like it’s shot in San Francisco a long time ago. Any know who the band in the film are?
I recorded one of the band’s songs when they played the Psychedelic Ballroom in LA, organized by The Blindspot Project. The Acid Test SF and Tony the Tyger were among the guest DJs. This band is amazing and have two imminent single releases – one on Market Square and one on local label Lolipop. I also stopped by their shop, where you could hear someone recording some guitar in their next-door studio.
Two bands who have mastered the art of making faithful cover renditions, but without losing the power of the original tunes. Miriam Linna released her first album in 2014, and Nobody’s Baby turned out to be one of the best records of that year. These were some of the best versions of 60s underground classics to come out since Fabienne Delsol was in The Bristols with Liam Watson of Toerag Studios. Then last year, a single called “The Hand Don’t Fit the Glove” appeared along with a tongue-in-cheek karaoke video. That song was originally done by Terry Reid, and is now included on a second LP with songs by as widely differing artists as The Beau Brummels and David Bowie. It actually came out in October last year, but I didn’t see a copy until this January.
Now, we all know Bowie passed away, but “You’ve Got a Habit of Leaving” was recorded before that. What more fitting tribute to David Bowie could there be on Record Turnover than a cover of one of his very best compositions, originally released in August 1965 under the pseudonym Davy Jones. Unfortunately he did make a habit out of leaving – the faked death of Ziggy Stardust wasn’t enough.
Another band I’ve been missing out on is French garage masters The Missing Souls, whom I seem to have discovered last year but then forgotten about. Their 2015 release was a 45 featuring covers of “You Just Gotta Know My Mind” by Karen Verros/Dana Gillespie and “Bad Way to Go” by The Bruthers. That came out on a label called Dangerhouse Skylab, who will be putting out their debut LP sometime soon. On the strength of that single, they were picked up by Hidden Volume for a second 45. This one has got covers of the legendary Oscar & the Majestics, as well as The Uniques. It came out last month but this amazing video from two years ago really captures the energy of the song.
Pick up the 45 here, and keep an eye out for the LP which will features both of their previous a-sides.
The first single (digital only) from The Alloy Six debut long player Turn Out the Lights is here. If you’re not familiar with the group yet, you should check out the interview I did with them for Swedish music site HYMN. Most of these guys have been in bands before – for example The Moving Sounds and The Fourtune-Tellers. “Each Night” however, is better than anything they’ve put their hands to in the past. Straight-up 60s garage, on the moody side – and the piano at the end really nails it.
The single premiered on HYMN a few days ago, and I think that’s still the only place you can hear it. So head over to the link above, and that reminds me: you should also check out their self-released 45 from last year. I actually forgot to write about it back then, but “Eye to Eye” is great and still available. Check it out on Spotify. The b-side “Be What You See” will appear on the album in a new version as well, along with ten new numbers.
Here’s a video for The Turns’ new, stripped-down single “Believe Me”. It’s coming out on Lolipop soon and is the first thing they’ve released since their debut 7″ EP last year. Wonderful video and and a brilliant guitar solo.
One of my brother’s classmates was badly burned by an aerosol can once, but that’s not why I’m writing today. It’s because Chris Parker’s UK based label Pogo Records is back with another smashing 45. “Afraid of the Telephone” is a new belter, by what seems like another dreamed up punkpop fantasy from Parker. Like his previous outing Chain Letters (who cut the brilliant “Bad Reflection” single a couple of years ago) it’s put together from members of various musical and geographical backgrounds. The Aerosol Burns features two punked-up powerpop hits, with the a-side reminding me of that other telephone classic “Hanging On the Telephone” by The Nerves. Have a listen below and pick up a copy before they’re long gone.
Massenger are back with their second album, and it’s my favorite release of the year so far! I was in Burger Record’s Fullerton store a few weeks ago and picked up a copy of the tape. They didn’t think they had them yet, but after a look in the backroom I came up trumps. I would also highly recommend the Banshee EP they released last autumn, which is only available on tape from Burger. Here’s a video for “Runnoft” from the Peeling Out LP. Dig it.