BTB#10 – January Music Alliance Pact
Written by brent on January 19, 2009
On a monthly basis music bloggers from around the globe select a track from their own country which is then posted collectively and simultaneously on those blogs – giving each nation’s track international exposure. This is the second time that Blagging the Blogosphere has made a show from this fine project.
Unfortunately this is the last weekly Blagging the Blogosphere. BTB will move to a once a month show probably on Sunday nights and as a podcast.
NEW ZEALAND – Counting The Beat http://countingthebeat.blogspot.com/
Princess Chelsea – Monkey Eats Bananas http://www.myspace.com/wonderfulprincesschelsea
Every May in New Zealand is NZ Music Month. Album sales and radio airplay figures of Kiwi artists soar and there is a celebration of local musical talent. For the past two years NZ music magazine Real Groove has issued a CD in May titled The Sound of Young New Zealand. One of the standout tracks of the 2008 edition was Monkey Eats Bananas, a song so infectious I’ve driven members of my household mad with repeated plays, eventually awarding it Song of the Year in Counting The Beat. It’s silly but incredibly compelling. Xylophone, electric piano, a nonsense lyric that doesn’t kick in until two-thirds of the way through the song, all atop a great rolling bass line. Princess Chelsea is about to release her debut album and Monkey Eats Bananas will be the first single.
AUSTRALIA – Who The Bloody Hell Are They? http://whothehell.net/
The Middle East – Blood http://www.myspace.com/visitthemiddleeast
I feel like Arcade Fire comparisons have been overused in music reviews over the past whenever, so I’m going to do my best to not compare The Middle East to Montreal’s finest. It’s tough though, because this Townsville, Queensland collective do fit the criteria, at least initially – a large collection of musicians (at least six, possibly seven) who create dramatic and climactic folk-ish anthems.
IRELAND – Nialler9 http://www.nialler9.com/blog/
Gran Casino – One Chance http://www.myspace.com/grancasino1
An intriguing upbeat rabble-rousing orchestral racket from a 13-piece Dublin band who have the horn for brass and blustery rock epics. Their debut Sun Music EP sounds like Arcade Fire jamming with Herbie Hancock.
SOUTH KOREA – Indieful ROK http://indiefulrok.blogspot.com/
The Invisible Fish – Fallen http://fuzzpop.net
Once the male half of Bluedawn – Korea’s foremost folk/dream-pop duo – The Invisible Fish is now completely on his own. For those who know Bluedawn his music is still familiar, but he’s experimenting more and the songs are more personal. Not wanting to compromise with his new-found post-noise-folk sound, The Invisible Fish releases everything by himself and put out his second solo EP, Loss/Sleepless last month.
ARGENTINA – Zonaindie http://zonaindie.com/
Bicicletas – 11 y 20 http://www.myspace.com/bicicletas
We started the year listening non-stop to this brand new song by Bicicletas, a superb space-rock band that has been shaking the independent scene of Buenos Aires for some years now. 11 y 20 will be included in their forthcoming album Quema, which is released in March by Bingo! Records.
CHILE – Super 45 http://super45.cl/seccion/blog/
Como Asesinar A Felipes – En Busca De Un Nuevo Sueño http://www.myspace.com/comoasesinarafelipes
Como Asesinar A Felipes (How To Kill Felipes) is the best way to understand what’s going on in Chilean hip hop music – cross-referenced music styles with deep and shocking lyrics. Former jazz musicians joined MC Koala Contreras and DJ Spacio to create an outstanding jazz-rap combo. Their self-titled album, released last year, has been described as the best Chilean album of the year by even mainstream media. And there is no doubt about it, no other band can take our minds, ears and bodies like Como Asesinar A Felipes have.
ENGLAND – The Daily Growl http://thedailygrowl.co.uk/
Emmy The Great – We Almost Had A Baby http://www.myspace.com/emmythegreat
Although the wait for Emmy The Great’s debut album has been long enough to make it seem like an indie-folk-pop Chinese Democracy, the good news is that First Love is finally coming out on February 2. This track is the first single from the album, released at the end of last year.
ROMANIA – Babylon Noise http://babylonoise.wordpress.com/
Les Elephants Bizarres – Have No Fear http://www.myspace.com/leselephantsbizarres
Les Elephants Bizarres is an alternative band formed in 2007 in Bucharest. Not really like those big, apathetic creatures, these dancing, multi-coloured Elephants are a very fresh and vivid appearance in the Romanian music scene. Their concerts often stir up the audience and make them dance with their indie-pop-disco-punk motley sounds. You can download some of their other songs and watch live performances on their website (http://www.leseb.ro/).
SINGAPORE – I’m Waking Up To… http://wakingupto.wordpress.com/
I Am David Sparkle – Jaded Afghan http://www.myspace.com/iamdavidsparkle
The curious name of Singaporean band I Am David Sparkle is a literal translation of a famous Malaysian disco singer in the 80s called M. Daud Kilau. Their music, however, shows only a hint of that nostalgia. In Jaded Afghan, taken from their second album This Is The New, a carefully woven ambience is animated by an intriguing blend of beats and bleeps that moves back and forth in time. For me, though, what most subtly drives this track forward in the end is the sound of a gently wandering guitar, lightly treading but hugely moving, with slightly darker rumblings underneath.
SCOTLAND – The Pop Cop http://thepopcop.blogspot.com/
Evan Crichton – Holiday Time http://www.myspace.com/evancrichton
Glasgow-based Evan Crichton is a rare talent. He’s a singer whose songs have a timeless feel, perhaps because they are immaculately paced and seem to exist in a world and space all of their own. After a year-long absence, Evan has just returned to playing live with a full band set-up and the Scottish music scene is a better place for it. Holiday Time is taken from his debut record Bright Our Broken Days.
AMERICA – I Guess I’m Floating http://iguessimfloating.blogspot.com/
Blind Man’s Colour – Jimmy Dove http://www.myspace.com/weareblindmanscolour
Blind Man’s Colour came on our radar in late ‘08 with three excellent Animal Collective covers. With their debut album, Season Dreaming, coming out sometime in early ‘09 and Jimmy Dove as their first explosive single, they’ve got a good chance of becoming my favorite find of 2009 less than one month in. They’ve also got a free EP called Rainbow Faces which you can download from the band’s blog (http://blindmanscolour.blogspot.com/2008/10/rainbow-faces.html). Jimmy Dove is a MAP exclusive mp3.