New Artists Roundup: Number 1
At Louder Than War we get approached by a huge amount of really great bands, but sadly we (the editors) have far too little time even to compile a list of them, let alone to write about them. So I (Guy – reviews editor) decided I’d reach out to our writers to see if any of them fancied becoming a dedicated New Music Editor for us…
…and frankly, I was blown away with the response.
So, to cut a long story short, we now have three writers who, alongside doing their normal reviewing chores, will also be taking it in turn to scour our “new artists” inbox to bring you, dear reader, the best “New Artists” we can find.
In the early days we’re thinking we’ll start with occasional round-ups, but if any artists tickle out respective New Artists Eds fancies so much that they deem them worthy of a full feature, we’ll a more focussed piece on them.
You may not know this ladies and gentlemen, but around the corner lies your next favourite band and we hope to make it the case that the corner’s a lot closer than it may otherwise be.
So here’s our message to any new bands out there who have no budget for a huge PR campaign – contact us via out Contact page with the info requested there and we’ll try to feature you.
Kicking us off with roundup no. 1 is Dave Jennings.
Foolish Atoms (Genre: anti-folk)
Based in the new City of Culture Hull, the drummer with art-rock band Heroes Of The Mexican Independence Movement Chris Norrison has just launched his new album ‘A Crack in the Glass Eye’ alongside a re-issue of his debut ‘Songs For Insomniacs And Narcoleptics’.
Foolish Atoms are inspired by Guided By Voices, PJ Harvey and Velvet Underground among others.
The subtle guitar hooks may well lead you further into this intriguing sound which they tell us is…
“…made mostly at night with guitars, percussion, voice, Wurlitzer Funmaster, world map on the wall, periodic guilt, delusions of grandeur, metabolic howitzers, traffic and trains buried in the mix “.
Foolish Atoms links:
Jon and the Jones – (Genre: rock trio)
Jon & the Jones is a rock band from New York formed in mid-2012. Frontman Jon Moodie had already released a solo debut which, in turn, led his team to encourage him to form a full band. Listening to the results we’re glad he did as this is a serious debut sound. With Helen Destroy on drums and Brian Stanley on bass, they will shortly be supplemented by an extra guitarist. Guitar driven melodies delivered by rasping vocals produce a sound that could transport you straight to the streets of Manhattan.
Jon and the Jones links:
The Gonzos – (Genre: punk-fuelled power-pop)
These will grab your attention! Formed in Leeds in 2012, and having just released their album ‘1000 Words’, The Gonzos could well take us by storm next year. Described as “punk-fuelled power-pop and amped up” they’ve turned out a rocking, urgent stomper of an album that will certainly demand attention. They will be launching ‘1000 Words’ at The Wardrobe Leeds on December 13th.
Positronik (Genre: electronica and soul-based pop)
Already identified by Louder Than War as one of the best new bands of 2013, Positronik are a Salford/Stockport trio that proudly purvey a blend of electronica and soul-based pop. Citing elements of St. Etienne, Blondie, Kraftwerk and New Order as influences, there’s certainly an ambient feel to the sounds conjured. A vocal style that is very easy on the ears is combined with dreamy melodic hooks to create a summery vibe that will brighten up these dark nights.
LUVV (Genre: Indie guitar)
Any band that includes The Chameleons as an influence is certainly worth a listen and Cardiff’s LUVV are not a disappointment. Also nodding to Public Image Limited and Joy Division, there is an insistent guitar sound best exemplified on ‘Us’ on the below link. Wales is a hotbed of emerging talent at the moment and LUVV look set to emerge as a hot new act in 2014.
Carrie Ashley-Hill (Genre: Americana)
Solid country gold from this new artist who released her first EP ‘Me et All’ in August. Carrie Ashley Hill teamed up with producer Barb Morrison (Blondie/Rufus Wainwright), dear friends Jeff Berrall and Sam Hopkins of Caveman, Kevin McAdams (xElefant), and engineer Albert di Fiore (Caveman/Sinkane) at his Brooklyn studio, Rumpus Room in early June for five days recording and the results are well worth a listen. Distinctive vocals and a lyrical subject matter that is at times quite dark offer an emotional experience alongside some distorted yet enticing melodies which maintain the vital genuine southern soulfulness.
Carrie started writing in 2010 on a road trip back home to Texas and has since produced dozens of ethereal love songs, folk-grunge jams, country crooners and powerhouse chants. Originally from Dallas, TX, she currently resides in Brooklyn, NY and is also a member of Desert Stars.
Carrie Ashley-Hill links:
‘Me et All’ is available at iTunes.
Nora and the Janitors (Genre: prairie goth)
The new album, Girls Just Want to Have Gun, from this joint project is described as a split album between two North Dakota loners obsessed with pop culture and the meaning of existence who feel their music is best described as “prairie goth”.
Comparisons are sure to grab attention and include Joy Division (which is pretty bang on with a couple of tracks), Smiths, Pixies and Art Brut. Girls Just Want to Have Gun was released in August 2013 and is subject to an interesting range of influences. Besides punk rock and other musical genres, literature, philosophy and poetry are very important to a band who believes their lyrics are a vital expression. They also express concern about the political and social concerns that exist in North Dakota at this time and do so with some venom. Could 2014 be the year of the prairie goth?
Nora and the Janitors links:
Kickstarter to fund new album.
Sunken Seas (Genre: Spacerock)
A new release from this industrialised space-rock trio from Wellington, New Zealand sees a further dose of dark, politicised sounds that follows up issues from their debut album ‘Null Hour’. There is a solid wall of guitar to accompany vocals that are as serious as the social and political issues they deal with. The four tracks, ‘Asylum’, ‘Seesaw’, ‘Slide Away’ and the eponymous ‘Cataclysm’ offer over twenty minutes of a brooding insight to how Sunken Seas next album will sound. Listen to this and possibly see New Zealand and the issues it faces in a whole new light.
Sunken Seas links:
All words by Dave Jennings. More of Dave’s writing on Louder Than War can be found in his author archive. He is also on Twitter @blackfoxwrexham.