The night arriving with more urgency and the day seemingly tardier in taking back over marks this time of the year here in the UK but some things do not change whatever the month or season. With arms full of new singles to consider and explore, the virtual sight of Shauna of Canadian duo Ummagma and Shameless PR coming our way is one of those welcome regularities. A couple of days ago she was back with a new bundle of freshness from around the world and we are here again to keenly introduce you to….
…Firstly, When This Gets Out, the new single and lead track from the forthcoming new album from The Persian Leaps. A song which “was born of frustration during the Trump presidency”, it is a prime infection loaded slice of the band’s pop rock which has persistently been a source of keen attention and just as eager plaudits.
The St.Paul, Minneapolis hailing band has evolved through numerous line-ups with principal songwriter, vocalist, guitarist, multi-instrumentalist Drew Forsberg at the core. When This Gets Out as the album, Drone Etiquette, that it heads sees Forsberg alone due to the pandemic, isolation stopping his regular collaborators being involved. It is a solo adventure which unsurprisingly bears the trademark Persian Leaps sound but also has a different freshness and bearing to its character in some ways which could be attributed to that intimacy.
Instantly a blaze of guitar makes a potent lure, its rock ‘n’ roll breath soon assumed by rhythms as alongside, Forsberg adds to the instinctive canter. With keys and harmonies a melodic smile within the sense of frustration and accusation, the track swiftly proved effortlessly infectious. Commanding attention without being overtly demanding, When This Gets Out unites familiarity and individuality in one highly enjoyable incitement.
With the single out now and Drone Etiquette due October 1st, both through Land Ski Records, The Persian Leaps once again is commanding full attention.
Another artist with a new adventure out October 1st is Italian singer-songwriter JATA (aka Gaetano Russo). Before its Seahorse Recordings released arrival we first have new single Crazy Game of Phobias, a vibrant slice of indie/synth pop firmly providing a fruitful call towards that larger offering.
Actor, songwriter, musician and the former bassist and singer of many independent Italian bands Russo draws on the inspirations of artists such as Planet Funk, Almamegretta, Blonde Redhead, Arcade Fire, Interpol, Block Party, Depeche Mode and Editors for his sound and the latter pair feel an open influence to Crazy Game of Phobias. Another song firmly bred from the emotions and reflections of Covid and the isolation it forced, the single is a mix of eighties electronic bred pop and modern indie enterprise.
Immediately keys weave a tapestry of temptation and suggestion, Russo’s equally alluring tones in their midst as electronic rhythms pulsate. A fuller flume of sound rises up within an already highly inviting body with in turn an escalation in not so much urgency as virulent fertility which as magnetically gets under the skin; the constant adding of layers and aspects to its design only adding to that captivation.
A song which just became more addictive by the play, Crazy Game of Phobias proved a pleasure for ears and a seed to explore its bigger successor.
Showing it will be a potent month for new sounds, this coming October also sees the new album from NYC collective Star Rover. Before then the band has released the single Ghosts of New York State courtesy of Peppermint Olive Records, a slice of folk/acoustic pop with a breath of experimental revelry.
Consisting of Will Graefe and Jeremy Gustin, Star Rover craft a sound which disregards predictability and embraces discovery in its adventurous breath and the band’s just as experimental songwriting. Recorded with engineer Vira Byramji and co-produced by the band with Jesse Harris, the song radiates that prowess. Straightaway it provides a gentle yet animated tempting for ears and imagination, the caress of guitar and jumping bean rhythms pure bait for captivation in a lure only escalated by the pair’s warm thought soothing yet evocative vocals and words.
Seducing like a mix of The Radioactive Grandma and The Durutti Column at times, Ghosts of New York State is a passion haunting piece of Avant pop which again makes the prospects of a forthcoming release rather exciting.
In some ways it is almost impossible for songs and releases right now and over the past 12 months not to have been influenced, shaped and certainly affected by the pandemic holding the world firm. Restore Us, the new single from Norwegian-UK post punks Permafrost is one release which proves the point.
The song, though having been germinating for three years in the band’s imagination, was brought to reality by the state and tem pest of emotions forced upon the world. It is a track which looks back and forward, merging nostalgic thought with forward hope whilst swimming the reality of isolation at the time of its full birth. Its sound similarly draws an alignment of light and dark, at times buoyant with optimism soaked contagion and in other moments thick in the shadows of lingering, oppressive change.
There is no escaping a certain Joy Division hue to the track or of bands like The Sound and Interpol with its catchiness bearing the essence of early Ministry but equally Restore Us cast its own compelling individuality and presence on quickly submissive ears.
Accompanied by the Pyxis remix from Paul Corkett (The Cure, Placebo, Sleeper, Strangelove) and one by UK producer James Chapman (a.k.a. MAPS), the pair seemingly birthed in the shadows and light of the song respectively, the Fear of Music released Restore Us proved one riveting encounter with Permafrost not for the first time having us hooked on their darkly rousing sound.
Lastly in this handful we present Termite City, the new single from Harry Stafford and Marco Butcher. The second track taken from their just released album, Bone Architecture, the song is a riveting exploitation of the imagination through a maze of textures and sound which takes the listener into an urban jungle of disorientating yet invigorating activity.
For those not aware, Harry Stafford is the founder /songwriter/vocalist/guitarist of legendary Manchester post punks Inca Babies and guitarist Marco Butcher a Carolina based Brazilian who has played in the likes of The Jam Messengers, Chicken Snake, and The Jesus and The Groupies and collaborated with such notable artists as Hugo Race and members of Tex and the Horseheads, Pussy Galore, Gumball, The Gories, Gibson Brothers, Jerry Teel, The Oblivians and many more. They have never met physically but connected virtually in lockdown and eventually forged a collaboration which resulted in the exceptional Bone Architecture.
The album sees their instincts, experiences and passions for everything from punk, blues, jazz, and garage rock among many flavours seeming to merge into their own urban punk blues creation. Previous single, There’s Someone Tryin’ To Get In, hinted at the fascination possibly waiting within the pair’s full-length and now Termite City, already one of our favourite moments of this year, cements that reality.
With the trumpet of Kevin Davy dramatically lighting up the skies of the track, Termite City is a stroll through an urban noir lit realm. Its rhythms are a constant manoeuvre, every beat and percussive movement an animated body coursing the veins of a landscape that Stafford creatively narrates, observing the exploited and corroded yet inescapably alluring state of the scenery explored.
Unpredictable and aberrant in its enterprise, Termite City proved immediately irresistible and increasingly addictive for ears and imagination. There is a definite whisper of bands such as The Birthday Party, Shriekback and The Cramps to it, maybe The Jazz Butcher too, but all embraced to a feral uniqueness and tenebrific psychosis; both the Black Lagoon Records released single and album inescapable imagination burrowing incitements.
Pete RingMaster 15/09/2021
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