Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner for the first ever competition on Al's Music Rant.
A recap. A few posts back, I unveiled a new section that looks at what's been spinning on my CD player and playing on the iTunes lately. Saddled with the rather unispiring and obvious title of What I Have Been Listening To Lately, with the intention of asking readers to come up with a new name for the segment.
Congratulations then to Jake Davies, who receives the prize of two EPs and the glory of coming up with the new title, (which is rather pun-ishing). I give you...
Wrangling The Heard
Got a nice ring don't you think? Let's give it the maiden voyage treatment with a batch of new Aussie music.
The Savladors - Misspent Youth
Now I'd be the first to put my hand up and say that there really is enough 'The' bands in the world, but how once you hear the summery indie pop of The Salvadors you too may think there's room for one more exception.
The refined likes of Atacama Disco, Ms. Munroe and Westfield all demonstrate a band with smarts delivering left-field stories encased in spindly guitars, spiffy drum sounds and a whole bunch of festival style sing-a-longs, at the point where the sun is breaking over the main stage. All feature on their excellent debut EP Misspent Youth. They're not resting on their laurels either, even managing to refine all the best bits into just three-and-a-half minutes with their new tracks Wilson and Eliza Jane. A confident, winning debut album is inevitable.
Architecture In Helsinki - Contact High
It's been a long time between drinks for Architecture In Helsinki. Four years between albums in fact, but now we get the first taste of their forthcoming album Moment Bends in the form of heralding single Contact High. Judging from the wonky synths and broken beats, it's using 2009 single That Beep as a blueprint. Combine that with a floating falsetto and we're in borderline-disco territory. There's even a hint of The Postal Service in that yearning, innocent chorus.If there's more where that came from, it'll be one of 2011's sure bets. Now all we need is a kooky, loveable video to go with the pop gem.
Kins is actually the new group for Oh Mercy's Thom Savage, along with his brother Kieran (probably inspiring their moniker I guess) along with Simon Lam and Jacqueline Collyer. So yeah, he's not probably part of Oh Mercy anymore, or to quote WhoTheHell, they're "sailing east as we sail west." But there's no reason to mourn as his new outfit is an equally interesting proposition: moodier, stripped back. Allowing room to focus on Savage's lovely vocal affinity with another Thom, of the Yorke variety. The four-piece don't have an official release as yet but they've already put together an impressive collection over at their SoundClound page which shines with potential. In particular the off-kilter stabs of United Fate and the spidery guitars of They've even got a fascinating little video in the form of Hume Bloom. Hopefully once their "mini-LP" comes out in May, you'll be hearing a lot more from Savage and his kin.
[Me] - Your Favourite Colour
Their latest single already scored the group an Honourable Mention with me for 2010, and I stand by the claim that they are Melbourne's best unsigned theatrical rock act. Featuring orchestra, horns, bombast and more than a hint of Muse, and their equal fascination with Queen's pomoposity. Despite their annoyingly un-google-able name, they are the real deal - treating even smaller venues like arena shows. Often with guest choirs, projections and excellenet lighting. A recent newsletter also trumpeted that the four-piece are debunking to London to really soak up their influences and record their debut album. I'll be sure to break out the eyeliner and champagne upon their return, and its arrival. Till then, these fine cuts will do.