Peggy Sue – Choir Of Echoes

Genre: Indie Folk, Blues, Experimental

imagesChoir of Echoes was released in January this year and is the third studio album to be released by the Brighton-based three piece.  Receiving mixed reviews it would appear that Peggy Sue are of an experimental and quirky persuasion, thus we may be more inclined to find them skimming the surface of the fluid mainstream rather than riding its waves.

Their versatility, however, is also their strength. Their style does not falter, they have created a distinct sound and are unique both instrumentally and vocally.

Emerging in 2007 as Peggy Sue and the Pirates, their name has since evolved, today they are simply Peggy Sue.  The collaboration of two vocalists, Rosa Slade and Katy Young, gives their music a new dimension.  Vocals entwine, harmonise, compliment and compete always flowing, always experimenting as they are both pulled together and pushed apart by the driving rhythms of Olly Joyce on the drums.

Their songs are fueled by angst, heavily laden with turbulent tales of lost love and troubled romances, songs delivered with spirit, all of which draw upon the combined influences of folk, blues and indie.

The Song Substitute sings of the “Harsh burns of sweetest substitute” and “Killing time with someone new”.  Beginning with just a sultry guitar riff,  soon joined by the steady beating of the toms and a tamborine, this rhythm creates a hypnotic feel

Idle was the first single to be released off the album and has been described by The Guardian as “gospel-tinged… mixing the band’s sweet melodies with a constant rumble of guitars and pounding drums.” However, in the band’s words: “Idle is about being unemployed and incurably thoughtful. The opening and closing parts are a kind of troubled gospel song – a prayer for purpose in the knowledge that the purpose will probably not be a ‘good’ one.

“Let the devil make work for my idle hands, Let the devil teach his tune to my tasteless tongue.”

73d3e060-3b1c-0131-2ec9-1ebd4c2a6979-largeHaving toured with the likes of Mumford & Sons, The Macabees and Jack White, Peggy Sue are not an emerging act. They are an evolving and well-crafted band that have followed their own path picking up a great following on its journey.

The Listening Post Blog has been a fan of this band since day one. Covering Choir Of Echoes today seems somewhat apt as the onset of Autumn fast approaches.  Winter’s silent chill brings about a longing for days gone by, for days of warmth and light.  The theme of this album is of lost love and the abundant longing for the warmth it once created

“Choir of Echoes is an album about singing. About losing your voice and finding it again. Voices keeping each other company and voices competing for space. The call and response of the kindest and the cruellest words. Choruses. Duets. Whispers and shouts.”  Peggy Sue

 

 

 

 

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JAMES BRUTE – BURY YOURSELF | DIGITAL SINGLE | 26/09/2014

bruteJames Brute is the former front man of The Brute Chorus. Now solo his trademark songs of love, lust and loss
are being delivered in spooked out, strung out and slung out style – with an old, fuzzy electric guitar and the
simplest of line-ups.

Taking his songwriting and performance into new and darker waters James continues to explore the musical
themes mapped out by his old band’s eclectic mix of folk and blues: His songs are still littered with literary references and characters from the Old Testament or Greek mythology set against the most base of human
instincts, but now the wild sound and fury is pared back to its most stripped-down and intimate.

There is a certain knack to perfecting ‘the less is more’ ethic when it comes to music but it is clear that, with effortless flair, James Brute can strip down music to its bare bones whilst still creating a unique sound.

With conviction, it’s all in the delivery.  Old blues songs were built with these very bricks, glued together with raw emotion, personal woes in a world of harsh reality.  The tortured soul that sings out to free the burden and, especially found in Delta Blues, songs that are built around highly rhythmic structures.

This is what makes this music work, this is what happens when all is stripped back and the raw foundations are unleashed, there is no need for complex structures, its the soul that sells these songs

Bury Yourself is fuelled by hapless sentiment, rhythm delivered by hand claps and very little else but it works so well, its produced by honesty and truth

Well I just got back from the hospital
They gave me twenty four hours to live
It took me twenty three hours
Just to stagger back home
Now I’m spinning like you wouldn’t believe

In 2014 James Brute has played select shows at Old Blue Last, XOYO and Secret Garden Party, and is now offering his first release ‘Bury Yourself’ as a free download accompanied by a short tour in late September, early October. This song, with it’s hysterical vocal and minimal handclap accompaniment, has been bringingthe house down at his recent shows and is accompanied by a video shot inside a coffin by New York director David Fishel.‘Bury Yourself’ is available as a free download from September 26th.

LIVE DATES:
September 27th – LEEDS – Trouble At Mill @ Sunny Bank Mills | James Brute, Red Ladder Theatre
October 7th – LONDON – The Lexington (F.U.R.S. support)
October 9th – BRISTOL – Breakfast with Apollo @ Louisiana | James Brute, Forgery Lit, She Makes War

 

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Post War Glamour Girls

Genre: Art Rock, Post Punk, Post War Glamour Girls

No strangers to The Listening Post Blog and featured in earlier reviews, Post War Glamour girls never cease to impress. With an energy that seems to have no boundaries, they continue to write in a style that is unique and unrelenting. This Leeds based four piece are determined, driven and constantly evolving, every note that hurtles out fires at you like a missile

In February this year the album Pink Fur was released.  A distinct style has developed here, the free flowing post-punk instrumentals are bound together by the gruff, baritone vocals of James Smith and, in contrast, the lulling voice of Alice Scott.  A pairing that bonds, delivering contrast and balance.

This September sees the release of a new single Gustave which, if it hasn’t happened already, will only and serve tighten and firm the grip this band will have on you.

Driven by a bassline that is meaty, reminiscent to that of early Faith No More, Gustave is calculated and surly. It yells out a story of spoilt love and does it with an indifferent disposition

It is fair to say that this is one band that will grab you, shake you and not put you down.  Their sound jumps at you, bracing issues that are topical. This is a band that has never deviated from delivering their heart and souls to you on a plate, tackling anything from the bitter aftermath of tarnished affections to politics, always serving up their sound in one hearty, portion, lyrics to think about and question.

If you are looking for passion, angst, anger, look no further.  If you want originality, you have struck gold.

The Post War Glamour Girls deliver their music with a punch, their vocals are distinct, you can feel and understand every word, lyrics that evoke and songs that penetrate.

Released with Gustave on September 1st 2014, Lolong is snarly and bass driven.

 

The Post War Glamour Girls are a band to watch, a band to follow, a band to see live without any shadow of a doubt

 

 

 

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Teach Kids Manners

Genre: World, Afro beat, Electronic, French World Groove

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“We all come from different genders, but what gather us is the interest we found in creating hybrid sounds, rythms and melodies with analogic, acoustic, electronic instruments, and machines, mixed in a pop blender.”
(Gillian – Teach Kids Manners)
 
Never let it be said that the Listening Post Blog fails to seek out variety when in pursuit of new sounds to share.
Upon this sound-paved road, the music that is acquired along the way is the fuel that keeps this engine running! For this trip we now venture into the realms of Paris..
Teach Kids Manners are a 3-piece, driven by the desire to fuse and mix up music in any way that they are inspired to do so, there are no limits, only endless possibilities.
Based in Paris and in its infancy, this band are a coming together of experimental minds, a collaboration of those having previously played in Indie/Rock bands, all of whom are now driven by a fresh desire to experiment and create new concoctions.
In June this year their first EP HTKM was released and all promises to merge, blend and experiment have been wholly honoured.
‘Delay’ is the first track on their current EP.  This track edges in with buzzing keyboards, cascading up and down a dreamy scale with the gathering and layering of sounds all peaking before the introduction of the drums.  Syncopated rhythm, the harmony of two vocals complimenting one another adding to the layers of this tune. The dynamics are driving and catchy, up beat with a blend of electronic dance and afrobeat.
This 5-track EP is a mellow, captivating and enjoyable listen with hints of Tricky/Martina Topley bird echoing through its creation.
A sound that cools on a hot summers day, a sound to take with you in the driving rain, a product of exploration to pursue and explore. A journey that changes with every corner..
The Listening Post Blog tracked down T.K.M members and set about discovering a little bit more about who they are:
- Who you all are, what brought you together 
Louise and I are together since a long time now…we always lived in paris’s suburbs and did music, in some other band also. Gauthier joined the band at the very beginning of this project. He came from south of france to Paris and for the story we met in a very awful Job. The kind of job you wear suits. At the time we were in different bands. These bands actually split at the same period and so that’s when we decide to create something together. My little brother recorded the drum on the EP, but we are a trio on stage for the moment.
We all come from different genders, but what gather us is the interest we found in creating hybrid sounds, rythms and melodies with analogic, acoustic, electronic instruments, and machines, mixed in a pop blender.
- How long you have been a band and any other backgroud info
Teachkidsmanners is about 1 year old now, and as you’ve seen we released our 1st EP a few weeks ago. Gauthier used to play in a South of France based rock band called “Waterllillies”, when Louise and I were in a more indie gender in “Seeing The Elephant”.
- Influences and aspirations
God, Barack Obama, Eric Cantona, Atoms for Peace, Mount Kimbie, Débruit, OutKast and a lot of other stuff that has nothing to do with the three 1st names.
- Gig dates 
No gig on sight but we are planning to go on a tour in Paris and the rest of France soon.
- Interesting video, what inspired that? 
This video highlights our female singer, Louise, dancing, and performing in this little house into her parent’s backyard. She used to be in a dancing company. The dance she proposed is a mix between hiphop, contemporary dance, and random. The installation you can see at the end of the video was also made by Louise into her personnal artistic work. We took all those elements together because they were familiar to us. I myself used to film her artistic performances so it was obvious for us to do it for our 1st videoclip. It’s a homemade video and we are working on a second one, and it’s really exciting.
- Forthcoming album releases/singles 
We may drop out a few singles these next month, and some remixes :) .
- Where you are based 
We are all now based in Paris.

The proof is in the pudding, if you like what you have heard so far, go listen to more..
This is the start of an exciting adventure, the discovering of the new, the chance to watch this project unfold and develop as it grows..
 To download their EP be sure to visit Teach Kids Manners Bandcamp page:
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Fat White Family

Genre: Folk Country, Dirty Psychedelic, Blues, Garage Rock, Experimental

Interview With Lias from Fat White Family Having released their debut album in April 2013, the Fat White Family are no strangers to the music scene and have taken every stage they inhabit by storm.

Labelled as downright seedy and depraved they deliver songs luridly, not only pushing boundaries but obliterating them completely. Pounding life into the heart of a dying genre they have revived the music industry with their chaos and are not afraid to offer themselves mind, body and soul in the process.

The communism-obsessed 6-piece, based in South London came together in 2011 and comprise of Saul Adamczewski, (Guitar, Backing Vocals) who was originally from The Metros and signed to a major label, brothers Lias (Vocals) and Nathan Saoudi (organ) both from former band The Saudis, Adam J Harmer (Guitar, Backing Vocals), Dan Lyons (drums) and Joe Pancucci (bass)

Driven to fill a void and rife with a desire to make waves in rock’s stagnant pool, The Fat White Family claim to be “satirising rock ‘n’ roll cliches”. Experiences from the past with major labels has seemingly bred this monster, disillusionment and disappointments feeding its growth

Likened to bands such as  The Velvet Underground, The Fall and the Bad Seeds it is evident to see why.  Musically they are a kaleidoscope of psychedelic garage rock with jingling guitars and a post-punk, dirty, grungy sound that instantly appeals.  Raw and unpolished, their music is slinky, kinky, an aphrodisiac of sorts fed to us and absorbed through the ears

Released from their debut album, “Champagne Holocaust” in March 2013, the single ‘Cream Of The Young’ is nothing short of a masterpiece. Its content, blatant and taboo, is catchy and once it gets into your head its gentle rhythm mesmerises. The bass line takes you by the hand, leads, and you follow without question. You are led into a sweet melodic meadow, the promise of sweetness and light radiates from the first few bars and you sway.  Enticed and curious you are intoxicated by this heady indulgence and by the time you realise what the lyrics are about, its too late.

As ‘Cream Of The Young’ unfolds it becomes evident that there is a sinister undercurrent developing as we hear of “the desire for your 15 year old tongue”. This track tackles content that we neither wish to address or hear about let alone be humming to! Music in the guise of a sheep, the wolf stalking beneath.  Songs that can be disturbing lyrically, wrapped up in catchy, grungy melodies, they slice up the nonchalance.

It’s interesting to investigate the fringes,” says Lias. “Better than self-indulgent love songs about some girl you’ve met. And to make it sexy, to make people slow dance to this song about a nonce and his terrible passions, it’s a good trick.”

To say that this band explores the realms of deviance would be an understatement, they have slithered far beyond its gates and have not looked back! Why is it, however, you are still here, their songs on repeat in your head?.. Once they enter, its hard to look back

What captivates, motivates us to listen to more? ‘Garden of the Numb’, child-like in its playful lyrical rhyming , but a song of loathing. Its hard not to flinch with lines like “You would sell your mothers cunt to open doors” even if its justification lies within what its protesting against – how things work in music these days.  ‘Lost in the garden of the numb’, this last line conveying their frustrations, reflecting on what has become of Indie and current music in general, seemingly sterile and unchallenging

Is this the point where we get what they are about? Is this where we look beyond the vulgar, and realise that, for all their blatant, twisted, perverse and shocking content, they are far from bland! Far from predictable, conforming, self indulgent and two-dimensional?  They do not pretend to be Rock ‘n’ Roll, they are!..for want of a better description. They are real and not afraid to offend because if you really understand what they are about, you will look beyond all of that.

“We are being antagonistic and trying to wind people up a bit but at the same time the lyrics are not entirely serious” says the band.

They are real and are here to test the boundaries, their music provokes. They create distaste but not just for the sake of it. Encouraging us to question, dispute, discuss and engage. For better or worse and for that, this is art! It gets you thinking, your blood boiling and your mind working. Musically its refreshing, stimulating and unpredictable.

A great line from a recent  Jack White interview in Mojo seems apt in this instance,“When you see a band in a bar you want them to be wild, to inhabit a world of their own.  The moment they try to ingratiate themselves with you, you lose interest”

Everything about The Fat White Family suggests that they are not in any hurry to ingratiate themselves with the industry and that is not about to change

If you made it through “Champagne Holocaust, your eyes will have well and truly been opened. Now you can brace yourself for anything because, lets face it, anything is possible with The Fat White Family.

True to form and with the release of “Touch The Leather” in March this year, this is the band that just keeps giving! Served up with a heavy helping of witty sleaze, the accompanying video offers our eyes the chance to feast upon a naked ‘toosh’ as it skates past in the background, bare and cheeky, what else would you expect!

Avid fans of The Fall, its not surprising that they have named a song ‘Mark E Smith’. Released earlier this year, this live session was performed exclusively for MUZE.TV Sessions in association with The Guardian

http://www.muzu.tv/fat-white-family/i-am-mark-e-smith-live-music-video/2212022/

This summer sees the launch of their own label ‘Without Consent’. Inspired by the desire to retain their independence, the label was named after a track on their debut album and will be releasing their own material alongside that of other artists and old blues classics too

In the meantime delve deep, get to know this band if you haven’t already and you will not be sorry for it is a truly liberating experience…

 

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Benjamin Booker

Genre: Blues, Boogie, Soul

Benjamin Booker’s avatarWith great power, gusto and a voice laden with more soul than one would believe could emerge from a 22 year old, Benjamin Booker delivers his music like a steam train!

Fresh out of New Orleans, this singer-songwriter has just released the single “Violent Shiver”…and shiver violently you will!

Opening with a bluesy guitar riff and the nostalgic sound of Chuck Berry’s ‘Johnny B Goode’ echoing through the intro, the driving beat of the bass and snare kicks in and you won’t look back…

Here’s a taste of what Booker and drummer Max Norton are like live:

Booker’s voice is gruff and vivacious. Reminiscent, perhaps, to that of Paolo Nutini but with a roughness beyond his years.  He hits you and there’s no hiding.

The Debut album, released via Rough Trade, is out this August with the 7″ of ‘Violent Shiver’, backed with ‘Spoon Out My Eyeballs’, out now.

Benjamin Booker will make you boogie and if he doesn’t then nothing ever will..

 

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James Brute

Genre: Rockabilly, Folk, Rhythm & Blues Emoji   Emoji

Image The first time I saw James Brute was in a small church in Norwich when he supported Martha Wainwright.  I was instantly captivated by this performance, one man, one guitar and a sheet load of stories told only by this voice of sincere clarity.

Its not often you hear something and just know that this is it, this is as good as you want it to get and at that very moment, that very performance was perfect.  Raw and unleashed, bear and stripped down with nothing but a guitar and emotion to fill the stage and yet, fill the stage he did.

James Brute is the stage name of a James Steel, the front man of recently disbanded four piece, The Brute Chorus – (see: http://thelisteningpostblog.wordpress.com/featured-bands/brute-chorus/).  Going it alone, the distinct rockabilly, folk-based, blues sound has followed him, an intent shadow casting its mark all over his new material.

With a distinct sound and the streets of Whitechapel embedded in his voice he sings of myths and the woes of a damaged heart, every detailed line telling a story, the rise and fall of his words heavy with passion and feeling.

There is something unique about this Brute, maybe its the ability he has to swallow the sound of the past and then spit back it out in a mouthful of modern day tuneful tales? Maybe its the way his songs transport us into his heart and mind making us feel what he feels?… Whatever it is it only fuels the fondness and appreciation that The Listening Post Blog has for this musical narrator

The Listening Post Blog, curious to find out a bit more about this musical character, had a few questions to ask and this is what was said:

1. Where are you from, where are your roots? What did you grow up listening to?

I moved around a lot as a kid. My family live in Somerset so maybe that’s ‘home’. My dad was a solider then a priest so we moved a lot with his job. I’ve made London my home and lived all over it. Been in Whitechapel for seven years now and this is definitely where my heart is.

My dad used to sing folk songs to me and my brothers. Matty Groves and The Massacre of Glencoe are two that I remember especially. Songs of infidelity and murder! Pretty light stuff to fill a child’s ears with! We’d team up and perform one called The Rogues of Lynn at the village fetes. All unaccompanied.

2. Was the choice to split from the other band members made so that you could pursue your solo career or had you just come to the end of the road with that? Why have you gone it alone?

I never wanted The Brute Chorus to end. We were brothers but our lives outside the band were changing and it was getting harder and harder to get us all together to write and rehearse. It was dwindling so we decided to end it and go out with a bang. The last show was insane. I miss it. I’m going it alone now because I don’t want to ever stop making music. At the moment I don’t want another band but I’m not saying never. We’ve stayed friends and still hang out.

3. Whats next on the horizon, a new album perhaps?

Perhaps! I’m just writing and recording when I have time. Seeing where it takes me! Nick from the Brutes works with me making the recordings. It’s kind of a continuation. I want to see how stripped down I can get. Reduce the themes and ideas I have as a songwriter to their bare essentials.

4. What inspires you?..What myths/books /subject matter gets you writing? Does the music precede the lyrics or does it vary?

My own love life has been the continual wellspring of inspiration all my life from neurotic teenager to battle-hardened manhood. I’m trying to write more honestly about myself and my experiences than before and to hide less behind characters and allegory. The songs are darker and sexier now but I couldn’t’ve written them when I was twenty-five.
Lyrics always come first for me. Even in the Brutes I would go in with a song with no chords written down or even decided. I’d assemble the lyrics to a tune in my head then sing it at the band and get them to figure out what the music had to be. Now I have to have more discipline and actually sit down with a guitar at some point in order to bring a song to fruition but I’m a reluctant guitar player now. Some of my set these days is sung without accompaniment like when I was a kid singing with my dad. It’s about as stripped down and uncompromising as you can get. Especially when singing about such personal stuff.

 

5. …so, picture this, Earth is being invaded by evil martians, we are all forced to flee to another planet.
What music would you have to take no matter what! What would you take with you to listen to?

I have a recording I made of my Dad singing all the songs I remember from being a kid. So that would come. Tom Waits or Dr John too. I’m a voracious listener and record collector. I’d say maybe just take my entire library on a hard disk but I’d still get bored quite quickly and need more. Besides, I’d have to leave my record collection and that’s more precious to me than even my guitar!

6. Finally…You have invented a time machine!!..What artist/band would you like to go and see or even
play alongside?..Maybe it wont be past, maybe it will be present? Who would you go and see?

I’d love to go see Dr John in 1968 at the time he recorded Gris Gris. Just to sit in the studio and watch him conjure up all that voodoo.

 

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