tanlines in the middle of winter

latest exciting gig-related news is that tanlines are playing at xoyo on 4 december as part of a small uk tour. i will be there, along with a sizeable proportion of the local hoxton tosspottery, no doubt.

this is why i like them:

‘real life’ is the latest in a long line of fine synth pop efforts to have made it onto my itunes playlist and as per the band hail from brooklyn. oh, and they refer to themselves as a ‘production duo’, which is far cooler than the more conventional ‘band’. nice.

the original is pretty cool too, although memorytapes did them all sorts of favours with their wee remix.


lovers lovers lovers

given that i can count on the fingers of one hand the number of good all-lesbian bands (organ, le tigre…struggling already) i was ever so excited to stumble upon lovers. a pack of three (surely they must be) lesbians from portland, oregon.

lovers dark light album sleeve

(the sleeve of the new album is VERY misleading if i’m wrong about the lez-thing)

listen to ‘barnacles’, ‘peppermint’ and ‘figure 8’ from new album dark light and you will see why i think lovers are ACERS:

they seem nice, don’t they? joce played ‘barnacles’ at the last disco and is a little bit obsessed with it too. i hope they come to the uk now that synth is in fashion and their new album is likely to become all sorts of cool. very good. there’s a bit more stuff on their myspace.

lead singer carolyn berk is not quite as marc jacobs modelling-hot as katie sketch but she does a good plaid shirt and wears her jeans awfully well. and she comes with two lovely friends. whatsnottolike? hope they don’t fall out and hate each other before they have a chance to travel a bit further than the west coast of america.

dark light is lyrically well-lez – “you hold on dear like a barnacle on a ship of fears” – and synth-cally it’s a postal service-the xx crossbreed. i like it. and my only question now is, why, in the uk when packs of lesbians decide to make music do we get stuck with shite like voodoohussy and the likes of this:

axe girl

the seattle subsonic blog will tell you more about the loverly lovers should you wish to stalk them a bit.

i play synth, we all play synth

so last week i subconsciously found myself obsessively listening to two amazing songs that i wasn’t sure how i knew (much less where they came from). one is called ‘move it’ and the other ‘time’. i think i played them both at the last disco.

both are the sort of sleazy synth pop that sounds like it was recorded in a downtime warehouse of the sort that jennifer beals called home in flashdance (ie. like, well cool), where the synth bounces of the exposed brickwork and the air vent pipes add to the echo. needless to say said warehouse is located in brooklyn.

well, what do you know. it turns out both songs are courtesy of the same band – selebrities. they are: a bloke that is in a band with the drummer from the drums; a bird called maria; and another bloke. of course they are from met in brooklyn.


i don’t know much else about them asides from the fact that they are rather predictably getting blogged about in all the right places, including the lush iso50 blog. beautiful t-shirts and fine synth.

selebrities are playing live shows with hercules and love affair and cfcf. in brooklyn, naturally. love. and there’s a wee interview with them on the addictmusic blog which told me all i know.

get their brilliantly named ‘ladies man effect’ wee ep here for free. love it. full-length album on the way soon, appaz.

band with a summery name in winter

this week on my list of gigs to see and music to mildly obsess over are is tropical. joce told me about this lot aaaaages ago, but for some reason i didn’t listen.

anyway, they’re good. and better now than they were aaaaages ago. and i like the new song, which is called ‘south pacific’ – you can hear it on their myspace page if you don’t believe me. out on 22 nov. it’s a refreshing indie scrap with a guitar intro and what sounds a bit like real drums but probably is a drum machine. and in all their photos they seem to be hiding behind sheets that are wrapped around their faces. maybe they’re shy?

they perhaps should have saved the anthemic riff for when they got a bit better known, but nevermind. EXCITINGLY they are supporting mystery jets this week at the roundhouse and happily i shall be there lapping it up.

i hope they take the sheets away from their mouths when they sing.

cannae wait.

museum of bellas artes

i first heard about these swedish goddesses about a years ago. almost a year to the day, in fact – just checked when i downloaded their mp3 ‘who do you love’.

this is a cover of a song by lesser-known 60s girl group the sapphires and is pure cool. echoes and a beat that sounds like a car door shutting, over and over. who do you love. yeah. pure cool. listen, please:

download it here. and be their 509th (at the time of writing) friend on myspace.

NOW they have a new song out called ‘watch the glow’ which is just as good without being too samey. love. listen:

the car door shutting beat has turned into a paper-shuffling beatbox with a few more advanced synth noises thrown in but the echoey voices are still there. this is the sort of super-hyped slick swedish electro-pop that’s probably making robyn’s ears turn a bit red. love, love, love…

this lot are like the sapphires locked in a casio-branded box with a turntable offering unlimited record scratching opportunities. and ‘cos they’re swedish they’re instantly ultra-fash. new age fun with a vintage feel, 60s girl band in a synth – what’s not to like?

wikipedia says of the sapphires: “their sound was comparable to much of the music released on motown in the 1960s”

the sapphires

the right side of my brain

yesterday an eerily lovely email inboxed from veronica falls telling me about a new song they had recorded “in a somewhat rainy east London” called ‘right side of my brain’. the best kind of email – local references and a link to the mp3.

sign up for foreboding emails on their website to get the mp3.

my thoughts: the guitars and drumming on ‘right side of my brain’ sound (a tiny little bit) like those on ‘beachy head’, which is perhaps not surprising given both songs are written and performed by veronica falls. it’s catchy and echoey and beautifully harmonised and has done nothing to dull my eagerness to hear the impending doom of their long playing record. 60s girl band in a coffin. they are probably still wearing too much black and no doubt just had a nice halloween weekend. more please.

“i hope that you also enjoy the new song which we recorded recently…” they’re so nice.

“…very soon we will be locking ourselves away in another studio to record a full length record…” exciting.

“…but until then, enjoy, and please come and say hello at any of our forthcoming dates with cloud nothings – tour starts on saturday!” will do. totes going to white heat on 16 november. still gutted about missing the ladyfest thing with MEN on 13 november.

exciting veronica falls tour dates:

6 – The Hope, Brighton*
7 – Thekla, Bristol*
8 – Harley, Sheffield*
9 – Deaf Institute, Manchester*
10 – Captain’s Rest, Glasgow*
11 – Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh*
12 – Brudenell, Leeds (w/ Vessels)
13 – Ladyfest, London (w/ MEN)
16 – White Heat, London
*w/ Cloud Nothings