Flash Pan HunterListen
“Beware of elaborate telescopic meats. They will find their way back to the forest..”, so sang Tom Waits.
We have no idea what this means but it was enough to inspire boho-blues, beatnik, Gregg Clark to name his project after this Waits classic.
His album Quick Way to Enemy is a wondrous collection of outsider-art as life-affirming left-of-centre pop.
Original member of The Sleepy Jackson, multi-instrumentalist and producer Malcolm Clark has consistently turned out a body of work from his studio in Perth that is as beguiling as his antipodean surroundings.
As strangely beautiful as a flying fish or as darkly intoxicating as licking a cane toad.
He produces music that is as confusingly uplifting as watching someone cry with joy.
Well it’s folk Jim, but not as we know it! Cordelia brings the sensibility of Bon Iver and Laura Marling to her writing and with the input of producer Tim Bidwell, has turned out a body of work of breathtaking beauty.
A fairly enigmatic artist who is happy to remain a mystery so we’ll make some stuff up.
Cordelia is a keen wrestler and speaks the language of elf.
London 2003/4, The Rocks shows were hipper than hip. Sharing bills with Art Brut, Eighties Matchbox, Futureheads, The Libertines and The Rakes, this indie rock, pop punk collection of misfits were at the eye of the storm.
Too hip for the NME though who’s record review consisted of the words , “hapless Camden f**kwits”…..which the band immediately immortalised by putting it on a tee shirt and selling shed loads. They burnt brightly for a while then, like the brightest of stars….imploded.
Jen’s song “Hushabye” was based on a fable of a guy who had a secret. Unable to tell the secret to anyone, he went to the forest and told it to a tree. The tree was cut down and made into a violin. The violin was played and the secret came out. Jen is clearly bonkers but her sophisticated tunes combine folk, jazz, swing and rockabilly with a fabulous indie sensibility that has made her a Steve Lamacq favourite at BBC 6 Music.
Setting London alight Crash Convention’s two pronged vocal attack not only drew comparisons with the Libertines garage punk squall but was endorsed by the Libs Carl Barat who gave them single of the year whilst guest reviewing in the NME.
Look fairly angelic in this pic don’t they….legendary tales of laying waste to New York on a short trip still abound in the drinking holes of Camden….angelic….uh huh!
Having marched imperiously across the indie pop landscape with his band Symposium, Wojtek emerged from the carnage of a trashed main stage at Reading Festival with a solo career that boldly strides through an eclectic mixture of styles and genre.
His eponymously titled album is an indie prog masterpiece.
He has a beard and lives by the sea.
Rob The RichListen
Rob The Rich’s single “Better” was released on Fandango Records in the UK and scored single of the week in The Guardian who described it as 205 itchy, skitter seconds of brilliance and the band themselves as a “less pleased-with-itself “ Vampire Weekend” The band went on to re-invention as Cave Painting, the Llama runs a small hotel in Swansea.
Sweet Sweet LiesListen
This über cool sextet drew a gushing 5 star review from The Independent’s Simon Price who drew comparisons to Cave, Cocker, Cohen, Merritt, Momus and Morrisey.
Going on to describe their oeuvre as “punch-in-the-guts folk-pop with hints of spaghetti surf, whisky-flavoured waltz, campfire singalong and New Orleans funeral jazz, all delivered with last-chance-before-we-die intensity”
My word that boy can write, we couldn’t have agreed more.
Man Ray SkyListen
A mysterious collective riding the new wave of Psychedelia and part of the tres chic Beatabet organisation. A shifting line up of international men of mystery rotate around the the central, enigmatic J who is currently rumoured to be cycling across New Zealand in search of new and unexplored hallucinogenics. Their releases are always couched in intrigue and never less than thrilling, a fact borne out by the accompanying photo. This lady is clearly thrilled but intriguingly we don’t know who she is.
An eight legged indie pop diamond that sparkled brightly before four of the legs were forced to relocate to the other side of the world, splitting the band like a pantomime dromedary.
A firm Lamacq favourite at BBC Radio 6, they left a handful of indie pop anthems. Writer in chief Martin Wilson continues to produce wonderfully socially aware observations of indie drama and the occasional rumour of a reunion regularly threatens to stop the traffic on the Holloway Road.
This Is Radio FreedomListen
If the indie rock, groove smorgasbord of the Super Furry Animals and Primal Scream were melded with the hedonistic tendencies of Lord Byron, THIS would be This Is Radio Freedom. A band of lunatics from Cardiff who are never overly troubled by the vagaries of prevailing trends or fashions, they have one behemoth of an album. An ill-informed but well meaning manager sent them off on tour with Alabama 3 …..oh sweet lord, the carnage!