Monday, October 20, 2008

'Ritual' by Tic Toc Tokyo

This video came as a bit of a surprise, a good surprise at that. The boys in Tic Toc Tokyo have once again shown that they are the hottest unknown thing going round Melbourne, and this video only encapsulates that even more. With news of an album coming early next year, it looks like the group could be in for some exciting times ahead. For now though, we have to make do with their single, 'Ritual', which isn't necessarily a bad thing at all. Try not to enjoy this.

Tic Toc Tokyo Ritual


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Portugal. The Man

If you look up at the above picture you'll see a band who look like they have a bit of fun. That band, in case you hadn't picked by the post-title, is Portugal. The Man. And that photo is probably the only time you'll see the band being anything but serious. They are just one of a handful of artists that I have been following ever since their beginning and have witnessed, this one in-particular, only continue to rise up and up with each release and secure a spot safely as one of my favorite bands. Their now three albums into their career, and with their latest (and most definitely their most creative) album, Censored Colors, we (well, I) have noticed a band that has matured from their roots and have taken on exploring directions that people probably wouldn't have expected the band to look down at all. It's worked out superbly for them, and I think with the album being released through their own label (but also having that extra support from Equal Vision) has given them that freedom they were most likely after all along. Censored Colors is a huge step-up from last year's release, Church Mouth, and sees the group taking in influences from just about everywhere from 70's rock (they most definitely found/rediscovered the Led Zep records), vintage folk, and just about every other genre out there worth messing around with. I've spent the last couple of days just trying to think of a way to describe the sound of which Portugal. The Man have found themselves doing, and this is what I could come up with (poorly, might I add); A piano/acoustic-based less-experimental Mars Volta with shorter songs sort of. The vocals sound nothing like The Mars Volta, but I made that comparison due to the fact that the group have incorporated a wide-range of instrumentation and new structuring of their songs that has that familiarity (just listen to the fade between 'New Orleans' and 'Never Pleased' and you'll see). Censored Colors is probably one of only a handful of albums released this year that I have not gotten sick of at any stage of the album's progression, and definitely one I'm not shy of putting on repeat. I was by no-means disappointed with Church Mouth last year, but I did see some struggles and worrying signs and it pleases me to say that this is a band that has truly found themselves now. Their confident, their rousing, their everything I want at this current moment, and produced a 15-track album worth more then just one listen. Album of the Year contender? You better believe it.

Portugal. The Man Lay Me Back Down
Portugal. The Man New Orleans / Never Pleased
Portugal. The Man 1989

Purchase Censored Colors.


Monday, October 06, 2008

Voltaire Twins

Voltaire Twins are from Perth and are a sister/brother duo. They make pretty catchy rudimentary pop music. They have recently supported Ladytron and played Parklife. Their early demos consist of two tracks, 'Disco Inteligence Light' and 'London. 'Disco Intelligence Light' will probably get most people's attention with its charming Glass Candy meets Crystal Castles aesthetic. Personally I'm beginning to despise the whole "8-bit" glitchy sound but I think I'm part of a minority, so I'm sure people are going to love this. Where they really shine is 'London', with its brooding synth patterns interceding delicate boy/girl vocals. It has a real vulnerability and honesty to it that is rare.

Voltaire Twins - Disco Intelligence Light
Voltaire Twins - London (highly recommended)


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