bdrmm - Madame Psychosis - Faultress - Very Good - The Electric Arch - Kacy & Clayton - Portland

bdrmm first appeared here in October last year and the new song 'Shame' makes for a refreshing return as the mixture of lighter shoegaze and to use their expression ugly pop, works so well together.

We have previously shared a couple of songs from Madame Psychosis and the opportunity to present the new album 'Survivor' is to good to pass up on. The band mix alt pop and indie rock together with clarity and passion, they are quite open about their musical influences, yet manage to present a distinct and very fine sound.

There are a couple of songs to hear from Faultress namely 'Marilyn' and 'Beating Heart'. Both are notably different, the vocals give some continuity, however the creativity and delivery is outstandingly good.

Sean Cronin the man behind Very Good has also shared a couple of tracks recently with 'Ghost Warning' and 'Adulthood' showcasing his off the wall creativity. Genre defying and veering towards experimental at times, there is something quite likable about these songs, I just haven't figured out what it is yet.

We have the debut single from The Electric Arch entitled 'Crisps & Crackers'. What starts out as something of an alt pop piece slowly drifts into a psychedelic fusion of sounds, the slacker rhythm keeps it on track as the song becomes rather addictive listening.

Kacy & Clayton are back for a third time this year with 'That Sweet Orchestra Sound' where the psych folk duo are more country and folk orientated on this beautiful and melodic song.

Portland share 'Killers Mind' where the Belgian singer-songwriters Jente Pironet and Sarah Pepels deliver a sublime pop song with gorgeous dual vocals, it's our second feature for them, hopefully there will be more.

bdrmm - Shame.

bdrmm combine a flair for weaving together dreamy sonic textures and introverted small-town sketches, channelling hazy adolescent disconnection into a washy synthesis of Beach House, jangly slackers DIIV and otherworldly shoegazers Slowdive. They’ve found a kindred spirit in cult shoegaze label Sonic Cathedral (Spectres, Lorelle Meets The Obsolete, Echo Ladies), to whom the Hull based quintet have signed.

Their first release is the ‘If Not, When?’ EP on October 11th – a tying together of their acclaimed slacker-shoegaze gems thus far, led by brand new single ‘Shame’. Retaining most elements of their signature sound, ‘Shame’ also introduces some post-punk components – staccato vocals, and hypnotic rhythms giving the track a purposeful drive. It relays a relatable theme, as vocalist and songwriter Ryan Smith explains:

“’Shame’ is about the heartache of having to tell someone you care about the most that being together can’t work, for whatever reason - having to be the person who takes it upon themselves to do the right thing, even though it feels so wrong.”

Releases from the band so far have caught not just the attention of Sonic Cathedral, but of numerous tastemakers in The Line of Best Fit, MTV, So Young, and DORK. As well as this, Radio 1’s Huw Stephens and BBC 6Music’s Steve Lamacq & Jon Hillcock are big fans, and John Kennedy invited them on for a Radio X live session, with pedigree coming in too from Andy Bell of Ride on his Boogaloo Radio show and Simone Marie of Primal Scream on Soho Radio.

Live invitations have become bigger and bolder, supports with Trudy & The Romance, Her’s, Gengahr and Horsey, as well as capacity sets at Tramlines, Gold Sounds and especially a chaotic, raucous homecoming show at Hull’s Humber Street Sesh making bdrmm exciting stalwarts on the live indie scene.

The band worked with Alex Greaves (Working Men’s Club, The Orielles, Heavy Lungs) to bring their self-styled ‘gross dreamy noise’ to life.

Joining lead singer and guitarist Ryan Smith in the line-up is brother Jordan Smith (Bass), Joe Vickers (Guitar), Daniel Hull (Synth & Backing Vocals) and Luke Irvin (Drums).


Madame Psychosis - Survivor (Album).

Madame Psychosis is a five-piece alt pop and indie rock band from Toronto. Members include singer Michelle Mondesir, guitar players Bret McCaffrey and Rene Ip, drummer Jaina Tharakan, and bass player Giovanni Paola.

The quintet came together in late 2014 after a conversation at a wedding, where a mutual friend of some of the eventual band members suggested a jam session. This very unlikely jam session resulted in what became Madame Psychosis. Five years later, the band continues to write and perform original music. Though their sound is often compared to Metric or a cross between the Black Keys and Alabama Shakes, the band cites a number of musical influences from an array of genres. These artists include Whitney Houston, Freddie Mercury, The Smiths, Arctic Monkeys, Spoon, Wilco, Pearl Jam, Guns N’ Roses, Smashing Pumpkins and War on Drugs.

The band first made waves with their self-titled debut album, released in June of 2017. Alan Cross, the internationally syndicated host of The Ongoing History of New Music, selected the single "Space Motorcycle" for his weekly Top 11 Playlist in August of 2017. The album was also featured on 94.9 The Rock FM's emerging artist spotlight, Generation Next, in May of 2018. Four songs from the debut album were showcased, including "Space Motorcycle", "Run", "On Top of the Game", and "Mellow". The band supported the album by performing at venues across Toronto, including at the legendary Opera House and the iconic Horseshoe Tavern.

Coming off the heels of this positive reception, Madame Psychosis was invited to perform on the nationally televised segment of Global’s The Morning Show in January 2019. They were also selected to perform at Canadian Music Week in May 2019 and cracked Dropout Entertainment’s Top Picks for CMW 2019. The band also released two music videos in 2019 for “Just Wanna Be Myself” and “Crashing Down”. A third music video for “Kapow” is currently in progress.

Madame Psychosis is now turning their attention to the release of their forthcoming sophomore album, Survivor. They have released three singles from the record. A Journal of Musical Things calls the aforementioned lead single, “Just Wanna Be Myself”, “a fun, upbeat song with sweet yet edgy female vocals”. They followed with “Crashing Down”, which was called “mellifluous magic wrapped in a grungy garage rock exterior” by Odd Nugget. Most recently, “Kapow” drew the attention and acclaim of several writers and playlist curators from around the world. Buzz Music calls it a “heart-dropping anthem”. Lefuturewave refers to it as “a brilliant piece of music”.


Faultress - Marilyn / Beating Heart.

About ‘Marilyn’/‘Beating Heart’ - The seductive crawl of 'Marilyn' sets a fantastic pace for Faultress's 5 Myths EP. Its dark and minimal tone and stacked vocals underpin an emotionally dynamic vocal performance. But the nature of its seduction is quickly revealed to be a snare. Faultress offers us a different kind of femme fatale, one whose vulnerabilities are centre stage, deconstructing the masculine idea of femininity by showing it as an air-brushed performance for the male gaze:

"Would you love me on a bad day? Would you love me every state I'm in / I am not performing today / No it's not that kind of day. / And I would rather hide me away / Where I can't be your Marilyn." 'Beating Heart' explores the role of the human bonding hormone oxytocin in making us feel closer to each other than we really are. It resists easy-reach hooks, favouring sharp and stylised grooves in its vocal loops and synth bass. An ode to post-coital bliss, 'Beating Heart' is instrumentally as carnal and as naked as its subject matter. 'Marilyn' was named one of the moderators' songs of the year by Fresh Faves.

Faultress is an extinct word for a female criminal, and this musical project is about wearing your unpolished faults and imperfections on your very female sleeve. As an artist, Faultress embodies the challenge to heterodoxy implied in her name, which she wields as a firebrand to write incisive and psychological songs that offer us a look into the complex fragmentation of feminine power, desire and mental health in a rapidly changing musical and cultural world. Faultress's prime influence is Kate Bush, a soul she shares a love of theatricality with - Faultress has a playwriting MA from RADA - alongside a diverse set of influences that includes the likes of James Blake, Aldous Harding, FKA Twigs and Joni Mitchell. Her full banshee show is a six-part girl choir replete with synths and drums. In her solo shows Faultress plays piano and loop stations. With the release of her 5 Myths EP, she reveals herself something of a polymath: lyricist, musician, singer and storyteller employing the full spectrum of her skillset to make unforgettably charged music.

See Faultress live:
26th October - Union Chapel supporting Eska and London Contemporary Voices
8th November -  Headline show at The Laylow, Ladbroke Grove, London.


Very Good - Ghost Warning / Adulthood.

Adulthood is the third album from Sean Cronin and his project Very Good. A multi-instrumentalist and formally-trained double bassist who is both a composer in the traditional sense and a songwriter in the popular sense, Sean Cronin has worked primarily in the realm of jazz (bebop, swing, New Orleans, modern, etc.) over the last 20 years. But that only tells part of a story that spills forth from Adulthood in rich, naked — and often bitingly funny — detail. In many ways, it's a universal story: You freak out, you drift, you lose your way and you chafe against the pressures imposed upon you by the outside world.

Then, as Cronin discovered, the real challenge begins once you come to realize that the biggest obstacles are actually internal. The age itself may vary, but sooner or later the truth hits. "I got to, like, 28-29," Cronin says, "and it was like 'Oh. I actually know what I'm capable of, but now it's just a matter of what I do with those abilities.' By that point, you know what they are. So then it's about putting them forward in the world."

Therein lies the conflict at the heart of Adulthood.

Now several years (though not quite comfortably) removed from the conflict, Cronin has essentially lived several musical lifetimes in one. From classical piano training as a young child to his first real gig at age 12 playing country music in bars with his father, it was on to punk bands, then the orchestra pit for musicals followed by touring with bluegrass acts, theatrical scoring work, indie rock, collaborations in modern dance, etc.

Musically speaking, Adulthood comprises all of those things. We can readily identify the influences Cronin drew from to create the pastoral folk balladry of "Tree Dreams," the magnificent, opera-esque buildup of indie epic "Without You Around," the funked-up Band-style Americana of the title track, the choral transcendence of "Light's Refrain," etc, etc. with a little bit of influence from both absurdist and classical literature thrown-in for good measure.


The Electric Arch - Crisps & Crackers.

The Electric Arch shares their debut single "Crisps & Crackers" and announces their debut record Out of Range.

“Crisps & Crackers” immediately sinks into a nodding groove that never lets up, as Marler adds reverbed guitar shimmers, streaky distorted riffs, and a mouthwatering bass solo over a steady, plunky piano lick.  His lethargic, stoned delivery grounds the psychedelic instrumentals to keep things from drifting too far of into the ether, and each respective part is leveled perfectly within the mix. It sounds positively gorgeous and Marler finds just the right balance between exercising his obvious virtuosity and doing justice to the song’s sturdy melodic structure. It’s psych-pop par excellence.

The Electric Arch is based out of Chateau St. Philippe in Bayou St. John, New Orleans. The live version of the band includes James Marler, T-Rey Cloutier and Sir Alex Smudge Smith. Drummer and surf guru Ron Bocian plays with the band on the West Coast while Mr. Binkles the Spider Monkey covers Deep South gigs.

Out of Range features Marler’s compositions, translated, recorded, and produced by vaping enthusiast Matthew Cloutier. Recording sessions took place in the attic of a 1908 double shotgun mansion, with the humble sounds of the past captured through classic gear from the 1960’s and 70’s. These sessions, fueled by fish sticks, beans, beer, and tequila, typically began in the late afternoon and ended just before sunrise. Various friends would drop in to offer philosophical insights around the “cocktail plank”. All sessions were attended by a Hungarian scent hound and a cat of unknown origin.

The 11 songs on Out of Range are short films about disconnection and disentanglement (éloignement et liberté), shot up close or from a distance. Inspired by 60’s French pop, surf music, garage rock, and the wobbly sounds of troubling times, Out of Range goes high, low, and far away…

“Crisps & Crackers” speaks of depression and the universal consolation of comfort food. “Postcard to Celeste” stars a lush artist appealing to his estranged lover to join him in his seaside redoubt. The figure in “Las Ramblas” struts through an urban promenade of feminine beauty, drawn ever forward toward “the little death.” A romantic wanderer dives deep inside a vintage travel poster in “Granada.” “Porcelain Hole” enters the dark forest of a nativist cult, shield in one hand, sword in the other. “Saturday Night into Sunday Morning” celebrates the temporary escape of late night bars and after hours culture. In “Moving to the Islands,” the cynical and affluent flee the mainland in the face of impending disaster. The early morning haiku of “Lullaby (for Donostia)” savors the calm before the world wakes up. Modern war machines pulverize classical architecture in “Lost City.” An adolescent musician aches for his popular ex- girlfriend in “Can’t Stand It.” Finally, “Western Civ” launches a new backwards dance craze.


Kacy & Clayton - That Sweet Orchestra Sound.

"That Sweet Orchestra Sound" is the new single by Canadian psych-folk second-cousins Kacy & Clayton. The track is taken from the new album Carrying On, which out via New West Records on 4 October 2019. The 10-song album was produced by Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy and recorded by Tom Schick at The Loft, Wilco’s recording studio and rehearsal space in Chicago. The band have announced a UK and EU tour for Jan/Feb 2020.

"That Sweet Orchestra Sound" was written as a tribute to the rural dance bands of the area where Kacy Anderson and Clayton Linthicum's grew up, Wood Mountain, Saskatchewan (population very few). These dance bands referred to themselves as ‘orchestras.’ One such band, the Romansky Orchestra from Fir Mountain, featured Kacy’s Grandpa Carl in their line-up when he was in his teens.

The track was premiered by Clash who said; "Kacy & Clayton are able to reach towards the timeless while delivering something highly individual."

Carrying On follows the international acclaim for their previous records Strange Country (which Q Magazine called “A beautiful album that nudges a classic past into a brave future”) and 2017’s The Siren’s Song (described by Uncut as “Ageless and beguiling. A classic record for this or any other time.”)

Kacy & Clayton's sound is equal parts homespun, coming from a family and community where playing music is an ever present part of social gatherings, and the rare country, blues, and English folk rock they obsess over and collect.  It’s an arresting amalgamation of psychedelic folk, English folk revival and the ancestral music of Southern Appalachia. For Carrying On, Clayton cites as influences: Bobbie Gentry’s Delta Sweete, Hoyt Axton’s My Griffin Is Gone, Cajun fiddle music, and the steel guitar of Ralph Mooney, who played on many of the records that defined the Bakersfield country music scene of the 1950s. Sixties psych has also woven its way into these new songs; Kacy enjoys telling people that they live 250km from the mental hospital that coined the term “psychedelic.”


Portland - Killers Mind.

Belgian upcoming talent Portland had an amazing summer. The band helmed by singer-songwriters Jente Pironet and Sarah Pepels played Rock Werchter and Pukkelpop and in between they finished their debut album with producer David Poltrock (Triggerfinger, Hooverphonic).

“Your Colours Will Stain”, mixed by Grammy Award winning producer/mixer Eduardo De La Paz (Local Natives, Frightened Rabbit), is set for release on October 18 through [PIAS].

This week they release the brand new single ‘Killer’s Mind’. A story about getting hurt, dealing with it and eventually moving on to better experiences is set against pure pop brilliance.

An ominous synth follows a commanding beat, Jente and Sarah trading verses and finding angelic harmony in a sneaky chorus that’ll warm up your auricle for the remains of the day. It’s dark versus light with some killer hooks. Highly addictive stuff!