Thursday, 25 November 2010

Single Review : Young Buffalo - Three Deep

Fresh-faced Mississippi trio Young Buffalo return with a straight-ahead indie-rock song off their forthcoming debut album. Considering their age (probably a collective age of about ten) and their short time together, this US band have accumulated such a huge amount of press support and such a sizable fan base that they make me feel rather old and scared. And they haven't even released an album yet.

Simple and high spirited, 'Three Deep' encompasses all the regular elements that modern indie fans have grown accustomed to – from the angular guitars to the chopping, symbol-heavy drumming. Musically, this is a far cry from the Fleet Foxes-esque 'Catapilah' demo that surfaced sometime prior to this single. However, Young Buffalo retain the huge, melodic harmonies that the 'Foxes have based their career on – all three members contribute to the main harmony, which result in a tight chorus so big it threatens to overpower this little guitar-driven song (in a good way).

Young Buffalo are prepping their Kyle Johnson-produced debut album for a 2011 release through Fat Possum. Considering the raw, jangly indie of 'Three Deep,' as well as the nu-folk and tribal influences of their past demos, it is probable that it will be a varied affair. Music Liberation's appetite has been whetted.

Young Buffalo - Three Deep by Music Liberation

Friday, 12 November 2010

New Music : Charlotte Eriksson

Charlotte Eriksson is only 19 years old. Charlotte Eriksson is a singer-songwriter. Charlotte Eriksson is good looking. Charlotte Eriksson is talented, and sometime soon Charlotte Eriksson will be branded “one to watch”.

Good, that’s the obvious rhetoric out the way. You see I suspect fitting into such a demographic will be both a blessing and a curse for this Swedish artist; proving she’s not just another contrived, female, pop-folk act will invariably be her cross to bear. Competition out there is rife.

Thankfully her music speaks for itself. New single ‘Creepy Little Story’ does what it says on the tin. With the morbid phrasing that I’d expect to hear in a Leonard Cohen tune, Eriksson’s crystal clear vocals narrate a story about a troubled young girl. Her voice twists and turns throughout the tune, pulling influences from all over. In the bridge she sings like Shirley Manson whilst in the chorus she delves into Avril Lavigne territory. Such comparisons may be a doing her a disservice, but it’s a connection that people will make when Eriksson does “teen angst”.

Nonetheless, the music on the whole stays well away from such clich├ęs. What’s more, subtle production nuances such as occasional vocal layering and reverb make this song stand out from general, formulaic folk. It’s imperfect, gutsy and ambitious, hinting at Eriksson’s impressive aptitude for song writing. Give it a couple of years and she could be huge. “One to watch”.

Charlotte Eriksson - Creepy little story by Music Liberation

Monday, 1 November 2010

EP Review : Strange Birds - Strange Birds

Strange Birds, Hailing from California are a drawling, near catatonic four-piece that are giving away their new self-titled EP for free, on Bandcamp. That’s right. All seven tracks of it too.

Of course, they have it on a name-your-price scheme but when offered something this beautiful, it would be a crime against creativity not to pay something. They’ve released opening track ‘Summerbirds’ as a teaser and it’s a mighty showcase of their talents. The song is a spacious, semi-psychedelic tune that’s intimate as hell and demands to be played in the small hours of the night. Dulcet vocals, reverb soaked guitars and brushed drums are as melancholic as they are sweet, the whole thing is beautiful and intoxicating; a lazy, slumbering tune that’s an understated masterpiece.

Strange Birds claim their music is “inspired by the multifarious wonders of the California coast” and like the sea, there is something both magical and personal about their creations. Sounds pretentious? Well only pretentious words seem to fit this unassuming and offbeat band. They’re as subtle as they are mighty. Go, download and be part of the quiet revolution.

Strange Birds - Summerbirds by Music Liberation