Genre Wander: Cairobi - Daniel Wiggins - Sounds of Sputnik - Surf Rock is Dead

Cairobi - Saint.

Background - Cairobi are a headily eclectic globe-crossing fourpiece of Giorgio Poti (vocals, guitars), Alessandro Marrosu (bass), Salvador Garza (keys) and Aurelien Bernard (drums). Their sound reflects their various backgrounds with a unique multi-cultural twist.

Their debut self-produced album was written in Berlin and, fittingly with their diverse nationalities, was recorded between Berlin, London, Rome and New York. Music and this resulting album was Giorgio’s means of finding his way through health problems, as after relocating to Berlin, he started to suffer frequent, violent migraines that would incapacitate him for an average of twelve days a month.

“I could either stay still, in silence, eyes shut, or take the medication and hope it worked so I could move on with my day,” he recalls. “Even when the medicine worked, it would make me extremely sleepy, so some of the music and lyrics on this record were written in a state of drowsiness. That part wasn’t particularly fun, but maybe it helped me get rid of some filters. Luckily, the headaches stopped after about a year.” Website here and Facebook here.

Swirling guitars and chanting vocals are surrounded by some kind of oriental psychedelic blanket, making 'Saint' a very unique and rather addictive song.


Daniel Wiggins - Summer Rain.

Background - Daniel Wiggins is a guitarist, vocalist, composer and producer from Perth, Western Australia. With an eclectic musical taste and background, Daniel’s music draws influence from progressive rock, pop, folk and jazz. His repertoire includes both vocally driven and instrumental pieces, specialising in the atmospheric and the visually evocative. Wiggins’ music has often been described as having a cinematic quality and a sense of narrative.

Daniel Wiggins’ first single ‘Summer Rain’ features long-time collaborator, Drew James Griffiths (Ur Draugr, Asphodel Creative) on backing vocals, as well as mixing and mastering duties. Ben Mazzarol (Chaos Divine) lends his impeccable drumming, while Daniel’s father, Mark Wiggins (Dilip ‘n the Davs) supplies the bass guitar. It was recorded primarily in home studios, with the drums being recorded by Brody Simpson at Underground Studios in Perth.

“I have been incredibly fortunate in being able to work with some astounding talent on this track, and the EP as a whole. ‘Summer Rain’ might be the best representation of my intent as an artist – an amalgamation of many influences and experiences that have shaped me since birth. I feel incredibly blessed that people now have the opportunity to hear the music that has been echoing within my bedroom walls for some time, and perhaps someone will enjoy it!”

‘Summer Rain’ demonstrates Wiggins’ effortless melding of melancholic balladry with progressive rock sophistication. Driven by the rich chords of the acoustic guitar, as well as Daniel’s characteristically soulful vocal delivery, the track is a rich tapestry of texture and melody. Its narrative follows the deterioration of a personal relationship, a longing for the changing season and the embracing of the self. “Summer Rain” will be released 9th of December 2016. Facebook here.

Daniel Wiggins gentle and soothing vocal delivery is just right for a song like 'Summer Rain'. One of those songs that builds as it goes, the instrumentation is very well crafted, it's just the genre that's hard to pin down. Folk, alt rock and everywhere in between I suppose.


Sounds of Sputnik - New Born Remixed.

Background - Moscow’s Sounds of Sputnik has announced they will release their new ‘New Born Remixed’ EP via Emerald & Doreen Recordings. Surrounding tracks co-written, produced, and recorded by Canadian-Ukrainian dreampop duo Ummagma, these tracks also feature stellar vocals from Ummagma’s Shauna McLarnon and Alexander Kretov.

Rooted in a shared love of melodic dream pop and shoegaze with a taste of the 80s-90s, Sounds of Sputnik has teamed up with the German label to bring the bands' influences – from Lush, Curve, Cocteau Twins and My Bloody Valentine, Jesus & Mary Chain – into familiar Emerald & Doreen disco & synth wave territory. The result is an unlikely, unfathomable but always brilliant “dream house disco noise experience" for the more adventurous listener.

Earlier this year, Sounds of Sputnik re-released their debut LP 'New Born' feat. Ummagma through hallmark U.S. shoegaze label Moon Sounds Records. Showcasing a palette of clever guitar lines, powerful drums, lush bass and gossamer female vocals, it also features Graham Bonnar (Swervedriver/ Brian Jonestown Massacre), psych rock producer Fran Ashcroft (Damon Albarn, Lords of Acid), Russian producers Morozov and Oleg Mezherovsky, and Brazil’s Mind Movies.

Fronted by Roman Kalitkin, Sounds of Sputnik now includes Oleg Mezherovsky, Oleg Luzhetsky, Dmitriy Bobrinev, Anastasia Berezovskaya, and Almaz Gaifutdinov. Now based in Canada, Ummagma collaborated with Kalitkin while living in Moscow circa 2004 and reunited with him after a decade of living in Ukraine. Their collaborative project went into overtime when military conflicts began between the two countries, as a decisive and loud symbolic act of cross-border comradeship.

In 2014, Sounds of Sputnik received a Jagermeister Indie Music Award, the highest music prize in Russia, and claimed Best East European Video at the 2014 Independent Music Video Awards in Australia. 'New Born' also remained in CMJ's American College Radio Charts for a massive 7 weeks, the first time this has been achieved by a Russian indie artist.

'New Born Remixed' will be released digitally on December 9 by Emerald & Doreen Recordings, which is run by avid audiophile vinyl-loving DJs and whose motto is "we release nice songs and great remixers. Genres do not matter, only awe-inspringity counts". Bandcamp here and Facebook here.

'New Born Remixed' is a fabulous collection of music, redefined and artistically reworked, just dive in and enjoy an incredible audio feast.


Surf Rock is Dead - In Between.

Background - "Hailing from Chicago and Australia and currently on tour with Jezabels, Kevin Pariso and Joel Witenberg -- who go by the band name Surf Rock Is Dead -- are set to make a splash with new single "In Between".

“It’s a song about going back to where you’re from and not feeling like you belong anymore yet not feeling perfectly in place where you currently are," says Pariso.

With it's high-reverb guitar riffs that resemble the rolling waves and a sad undertone to the lyrics, "In Between" embodies the beachiness of their namesake's genre through a new-wave filter. Website here and Facebook here.

Upcoming Tour Dates w/ The Jezebels:
Dec 01 @ Music Hall Of Williamsburg - Brooklyn NY
Dec 03 @ World Cafe Live - Philadelphia, PA
Dec 05 @ Rock & Roll Hotel - Washington, DC.

'In Between' is a silky flowing and beautiful surf pop meets shoegaze piece, that is most insistent on being played again.