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January In Retrospect

Single Reviews:

Submotion Orchestra // Always

Jittery drum beats, jazzy piano/saxophone and Soul II Soul-y vocals…it’s hard to have a better introduction to this ‘Leodensian’ progressive-dubstep act.  My only quibble is that the track never really seems to progress or change throughout. Sadly the Synkro remix doesn’t really add much to the original, but the Laxx remix is, to not be overly hyperbolic,  flippin’ awesome. Starting off with eerie ambience, you wait for that absolutely cavernous dub bass line to kick in only to hear the track mutate into some freaky dub-acid house hybrid. It’s perfect. (By Laurence Cheesman.)

Patrick Wolf // Together

Having released his last album Lupercalia in April earlier this year- which on the whole, achieved encouraging reviews, there is hope for great things from the release of his new EP Brumelia, out December 4th. The track list includes songs he has written over the last year and also features a song he wrong whilst travelling through the swamps of Florida. One song that may seem familiar however, is “Together”, which Wolf has reworked especially for the release of the EP. With his renowned baritone voice and beautifully put together strings, “Together” is a romantic indie pop song, in which Patrick’s broody lyrics and electronic composition merge to form a single which meets the high expectations of the new release. (By Tilly Sharp)

Album Reviews:

Low Level Flight // Through These Walls

With its funky looking art-work, Through these Walls was looking promising. The start was pretty hopeful, all rolling drums and epic guitars in the intro to album opener Cash Machine. And then the vocals come in. Oh! The vocals…they sound like the worst kind of late 90s American wimp-punk and the kind of chant-alongs that belong solely in the realm of Blink-182 and jimmy Eat World. Exit, Raining Castles and the songs that follow are in the same vein; varying between a lacklustre amalgam of early-naughties dance-punk and Fugazi, and the sort of beige landfill indie that flooded the charts a few years back. With added whining. However, when picked apart each song could be pretty darn good, but one minute it’s moody-teen angst-rock, then all of a sudden it goes Editors, and for reasons known only to the band, it transmogrifies to shouty, laddy ‘indeh’…all in the space of a minute. That pretty much sums up the whole album too; it comes off as trying to appeal to too many people and attracting no-one. It should be great but it just isn’t. (By Laurence Cheesman.)

Smoove and Turrell // Eccentric Audio

Eccentric Audio is definitely eccentric. Its opening song Higher sets the groovy vibe within seconds of pressing play, its up-tempo style creating the same sort of feel as Beggin’ by Madcon – catchy, dancey, fun. The instruments put together for the songs – particularly the electric guitar and percussion – bring Jimmy Hendrix’s funky style back to life. The instruments are also a great accompaniment to the lead singer’s voice, which has a kind of retro, husky feel to it at times- the guy sure has range in his voice-what a set of lungs! It’s that sort of album that will make you want to stand on a chair and dance with joy -very feel good. There are also calmer sounds on Eccentric Audio, for example, Wasted Man put more emphasis on the main singer’s voice – you can hear his pain and passion. To give perhaps a bit of criticism I would say shame about the disc being scratched and causing some songs to be inaudible. Neverthless, these artists are all about the funk; singing about feeling it “deep in your soul” and mixing guitar blues into a more contemporary, R&B sound. Very original and very fluid. Stand back Joss Stone; Smoove and Turrell are the new sound of soul and they mean business. (By Kat Koumourou)

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