Brad Weber will be familiar to some of you in the way that you’ll have seen him on-stage pounding the skins at Caribou live shows.
The Ontario’s own music is released under the name Pick A Piper and a new album Distance arrives on March 3rd, influenced by his travels.
A bewitching slow-rave travelogue of sounds and stories picked up along the way, it’s a record that simmers with both the excitement of adventuring to these locales, and the melancholy of the people you leave behind to visit them. “It’s a great source of heartache, but also a great source of joy,” Weber explains of an album “about trying to balance connectivity with chronically being away.”
‘Nikko’ is a syth-swirling arpeggio with tough drums and low-end perhaps also informed by Dan Snaith’s other project Daphni and his involvement with Caribou.
Castlepalooza today has announced a new partnership with Aiken Promotions for its 10th year that sees them bring in bigger names and move the festival from the August bank holiday weekend to Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd July.
On the way to a redesigned site at the haunted Charleville Castle in Tullamore this year are:
Tiger & Woods
Colm Mac Con Iomaire
Overhead, The Albatross
Get Down Edits
The Altered Hours
That might be Castlepalooza’s best lineup yet on the strength of headliners alone.
Tickets are a bit more this year but are still a reasonable €134 + fees for the weekend with camping or €115 + fees for a weekend ticket. Tickets go on sale on Monday at 9am from Ticketmaster.
With the closure of the Twisted Pepper and with club nights moving towards larger venues with international-featuring guests, and every week, seemingly bringing yet another house and techno night, the time feels right to try something different. To take it back to the basics.
Good tunes. Good people. A small room. A disco ball. A lot of dancing. No distractions.
Lumo is a new monthly club night brought to you by Nialler9, State Magazine’s Simon Roche and Adultrock’s Gavin Elsted that’s kicking off on Friday October 30th (and then Saturday November 21st and Saturday December 12th) in Bar Tengu behind Yamamori Sushi on Great Strand Street (near Hapenny Bridge, beside the Grand Social). The early birds are gone for next Friday but there will be tickets on the door on the night from 10pm.
It’s a dancing club, that is you go to have a dance, not to hang out in the smoking area or another bar off the side. There are no distractions except a good soundsystem, a decent bar and DJs in the corner playing classics and curveballs. It’s club night where you will dance with friends not just face the DJ.
It is a club night where you will hear Phil Collins and Caribou; a club night where you will hear The Knife and Paul McCartney; A club night where you will hear Inner City and Grimes. A club night with no restrictions, except for great tunes for dancing.
To get you in the mood, here are 10 live recordings from the UK festival featuring All We Are covering Caribou, Eaves, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Jape, Booka Brass Band, This Is The Kit and The Unthanks…
Dan Snaith just posted an edit he’s been playing in his Daphni sets of two tracks – Usha Uthup ‘Main Gul Badan’ and Alex Israel ‘Colugo’. Snaithi is back in Ireland as Caribou on Saturday at Longitude.
Literally any excuse to feature this song again. The best song of last year, from Our Love, gets a new video. It’s ‘Can’t Do Without You’ once again – still being played out loads when DJing. Bring the sun.
Caribou are releasing a remix package this week of Our Love tracks. The album has given us some great remixes by Carl Craig and Tale Of Us/Mano Le Tough, and the new ones of ‘Second Chance’ and ‘Mars’ by Head High are worthy additions to that strand of remixes.
Anyone who has witnessed one of Caribou’s incendiary live performances in recent years will dig this.
The Caribou Vibration Ensemble EP is a live three-track recording of Dan Snaith’s 2011 touring project which including the Caribou live band, Four Tet, James Holden, Ahmed Gallab of Sinkane and the quartet of horn players who helped record the album Swim: Kyle Brenders, Colin Fisher, Rob Piilonen and Steve Ward.
There are three tracks on it: a near-nine minute live version of ‘Bowls’, a 13-minute version of ‘Sun’ and an improv track. Two were recording in Ghent, Belgium and one was recorded at Scala in London.
The release is dedicated to sound engineer Julia Brightly who did sound for Caribou, Mogwai and Yeah Yeah Yeahs and who passed away in 2011 (a track on Caribou’s latest Our Love is named after her). As a result, all proceeds will go towards genderedintelligence.co.uk
Longitude Festival has revealed its first headline acts and its first names for the festival in general for the Marlay PArk event from Friday July 17th to Sunday July 19th.
Hozier headlines the Friday, Alt-J headline Saturday and the Chemical Brothers are Sunday while Caribou, SBTRKT, Wild Beasts, Jungle, Little Dragon, Young Fathers, Kaytranada, Hudson Mohawke, Wolf Alice, Slaves, Girl Band and Gengahr are also on the list.
Tickets are €149.50 plus fees for a weekend or €59.50 plus fees from Ticketmaster on sale next Friday 30th January at 9am.
As Three are now a partner of the festival, Three and O2 customer will have access to presale tickets which go on sale this Wednesday January 28th at 9am ahead of general sale on Friday. Customers who wish to sign up can register by texting MUSIC to 51020, those already registered can simply text LONG to 51020.
Primavera have announced their lineup for its 15th edition in Barcelona from May 27 – 30th and it includes headliners The Black Keys, The Strokes, Ride, Patti Smith, Interpol and Alt-J with appearances from Underworld performing dubnobasswithmyheadman, Sleater-Kinney, The Julie Ruin with Kathleen Hanna, Babes In Toyland, James Blake, Damien Rice, Death From Above 1979, Caribou, Twin Shadow and interesting bookings like Einstürzende Neubauten, Kelela, Arthur Russell, Run The Jewels, Tony Allen, Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Health.
Tickets are €175 until February 3rd, rising to €185 til May 4th and €195 after. There is an option to buy in three €55 installments. More info.
Dan Snaith shared an 1000-song playlist that’ll serve as your background playlist for any situation from rap to soul to funk to psychedelia and beyond. It’s something else. From Minnie Ripperton to Shuggie Otis to Liquid Liquid to Pusha T, this is a musical education.
The last few years of my life have been incredible, thanks in large part to all of you – so I’ve been thinking of how to say thank you.
As you can imagine, music has been a central love of my life since I was a teenager and over the years I’ve been introduced to a lot that has stayed with me. I’ve collected the majority of that music here – and I thought sharing it with you seemed like one way I could say thanks.
I’m sure some things are under-represented or over-represented, but roughly speaking this is a musical history of my life. Of course a lot of this music has come to me through my friends – thank you to Koushik, Kieran, Jeremy, Gary, Brandon, Jason, Sam, Ketan, Ryan, Toby and many others…
Also, please share music with me that you think I would like but is not included here, in the hope this becomes a dialogue rather than a monologue.
I suggest you listen to this on shuffle as I made no attempt to sequence these tracks – I just entered them as I browsed along the shelves in my record collection. If you see dead links or duplicate songs please tweet me @caribouband.
Due to a fault in youtube’s playlist coding if you embed this playlist it will be truncated down to 200 tracks. Hopefully they will resolve that at some point but for now if you want to hear all 1000 songs you need to listen at the link below.
I hope you find something to enjoy here. Thanks,
Here’s my favourite list of the year to do: my songs of 2014 All I ask is that if you discover something through it, leave me a comment below and let me know. Listen on Spotify or browse below. I’m taking an extended Christmas break until January 13th. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you!
My favourite albums of the year features a sixth album career highlights from a psychedelic mathematician, a fourth album breakthrough for a rubbernecking sweat-drenched band, the return of Aphex Twin, a Wicklow man who seemed to take over the music world, two great Irish rap albums, an album about an imagined trip through China, two very different R&B debut albums, lounge-time electronica from Norway, Annie Clark’s continued ascension through ambition, a collaborative effort from Iceland and the Faroe Islands and a marquee buddy rap album that said more about the state of America than anything else this year and had a brash kick-ass time doing it.
There’s a Spotify playlist available for it all but click down to get some context for each album from 10 to 1. Top 100 songs of the year tomorrow.
“We know now that the contents of Syro is just some of the material recorded in the intervening years in one of James’ many studios. The oldest track stretch back six or seven years, using a massive 138 pieces of musical equipment (all listed in spiral on the artwork).
“What appears before it also echoes the heavier side of Druqks but repeated listens reveal new textures, new moods, new avenues explored by James. The trademark eeriness of melody and general cheeky humour is still evident throughout but the greatest part of a new Aphex Twin record is that is truly allows you to get lost in its puzzle, a completely different musical terrain even when there are expected imprints of ambient works, electro, acid, jungle and squiggly funk.
“The 10 minute experience of ‘XMAS_EVET10 [thanaton3 mix]’ feels different every time with environmental listening experiences changing the focus and feel (headphones, outdoors, late-night) as all the best electronic music can do. Syro still offers much to explore, many repeat listens in.
“And that is the key to why Aphex Twin is pored over so minutely, because he goes into such detail in his music. James’ intricate compositional skills remains his biggest asset. While his sounds have been copied over the years, his brain is still peerless.”
The American singer dials up the amps and keeps things intimate.
“When you have a voice so striking you could hang a hat on it, it’s probably a good idea to hang your songs on it too. Angel Olsen’s 2012 debut album Half Way Home introduced us to the Missouri singer’s deep country-folk vibrato that sometimes sounded like an entrant in a yodelling competition and musically, was set to throwback acoustic folk. She was an otherworldly attraction.
“The followup, Burn Your Fire For No Witness (Jagjaguwar) still relies on Olsen’s distinctive tones to draw you in but the songs hold you closer and Olsen reveals more of herself in the process, while expanding the arrangements to include a rock band at full tilt, devastating acoustic songs and poignant country-folk.
“If Olsen sounded distant and unearthly before, on Burn Your Fire For No Witness, she is emotionally baring, whispering uncomfortably close in your ear or sometimes dancing around you, a real person, hanging her songs and her voice on relatable and knowable experiences.”
A brilliant grimey hip-hop collaborative album via Clare, Zimbabwe and Limerick..
“As they describe it, ‘a Zimbabwean Christian and an Irish pagan sit down with a pot of tea’ with the expressed interest of changing the game.
“What God Knows, the founding member of the Random Acts Of Kindness collective and Ennis-born mynameisjOhn came up with (along with MuRli) is a game-changer in the way it drags Irish hip-hop into a fully-formed album/mixtape format with a confidence and skill that is unfamiliar in this country’s rap output.
“MC God Knows is a fervent presence, an MC with command, as heard on the soulful clip of ‘Standard’, an easy album highlight. MynameisjOhn provides the horn-soul hip-hop backing but doesn’t rest there, the beats bang, the strings stab and God Knows goes double time to the beat slowing to let the soul sample breathe.
“The versatility extends to MynameisjOhn too. ‘Throw The Spear’ reminds me of an MF Doom production – Dangerdoom era, meets Machinedrum. ‘Habbahuk’ is more plaintive, ‘Twentyfourseven’ is psychedelic funk and there are hints of a knowledge of electronic subgenres, even African dance on ‘African Shirts’.
“Aspects of being an African boy growing up in Ireland seeps through the lyrics in details about being black in an Irish school. He’s Joined by MuRli and Guide on ‘Words Of Our Fathers’, a track which, in the short history of Irish-African rap would have never been made twenty years ago, and serves as an aural document of one small thing that multi-cultural Ireland has given us.”
Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds and Faroe Islands’ synth-pop musician Janus Rasmussen’s first album together collides two worlds of sounds to engaging effect.
” Arnalds and Rasmussen explore what happens when contemporary composition that uses stringed instruments, has a classical knowledge and is often written with scores in mind intersects with the sensibilities and practices of synthesizer-driven music structures.
“The pair spent much of the year in Reykjavík working together on this album. The result is a grandiose vocal-less dance album that effectively uses the tactile textures of the former in the arena of the latter.
“Across seven, often long tracks (the average length of about 6 and a half minutes), the opposing worlds of electronic and classical mesh well together and Kiasmos moves in a place that is neither contemporary or classical, house or techno, but that crosses both with a new identity.”
An alluring minimal indie R&B album from the Oxford musicians.
“ZABA, the band’s debut album pushes their atmospheric agenda into a cohesive release. Their M.O. is slinky minimal pop, not a million miles from Alt-J, but more exotic and worldly than their counterparts. But they do share a common parlance in how they translate their traditional band setup into an otherworldly place.
“Executive production by Paul Epworth with Bayley producing ensures that level of aural consistency, meaning ZABA which is likened to ‘a backdrop of man-made wilderness,’ according to the band directly, is awash with ambient and alluring songcraft.”
Dark disco and electronic pop on album #2 from the Long Island band.
“The eight tracks on the self-titled second album are definitely night-time grooves, which occupy the same mood without jumping around from genre to genre, and as an album it works wonderfully, because Mr Twin Sister have an attention to the small details that stands to them when they delve deep into genres like disco and funk.
“Andrea Estella’s lyrics suit the vibe, their disco-noir sound is escapism and she often seeks to escape. ‘In The House Of Yes’ she locks herself in her room, drinks to a stupor and dances on her own own til her head is on the ground. ‘Rude Boy’ finds her rejecting the advances of an opposite (“I have all the drinks i can handle”), content to exist in the space. “Is there a real me? Or am I just a series of nights,” she sings on ‘Blush’. The thrilling ‘Out Of The Dark’ has her questioning identity too – “I am a woman / But inside I’m a man / And I want to be as gay as I can.” The Johnny Jewel-esque ’12 Angels’ has someone singing about being in drag to reinforce the theme.
“Despite the album being united in tone, there’s a sense that Mr Twin Sister aren’t settled. It’s in the artwork which is deliberately unfinished and packaged, it’s in the 37-minute running time and it’s in the new name. The altered band have reset and are heading in their own independent direction and making great music as part of the process.”
“Twigs has showed herself in public through artwork and videos which have hyper-realised versions of herself (large eyes, elongated neck, disfigured faces), that she is interested in examining and distorting her identity, including the very name she’s persisted with – Formerly known as.” On LP1, she shares seemingly true intimate versions of herself.
“There is no worry that the separation of the music from the visuals FKA twigs has become synonymous with has lessened the impact of LP1 or that twigs has nothing to say. A longer sustained running time means rather than snatches of character-forming opinion, we get a confidential look at the artist herself talking sex, self-image, desire, loneliness, intimacy, and state of mind, subjects normally guarded from others more vehemently, particularly for new artists.
“The combination of twigs’ alien otherworldliness, her ambient often anguished electronic R&B style and her intimate and lustful portrait of herself, directly or reflected in others, makes for an iconic release and helps form a person who feels human and real. By the end of the album’s 10 tracks, twigs decides that she knows herself best, after all.”
The Baltimore band’s fourth record of melodramatic synth-pop hit a bigger audience.
“These are songs that have the chest-thumping melodramatic new wave pop at the heart of what they do while refining the songwriting and production by Chris Coady make for an overall better album.
“There’s a straight up heart-on-sleeve anthemic lean to all of the songs. Each of them stand on their own, hence the title, whether it’s the yearning synth-pop of ‘Spirit’, the hook-laden chorus of ‘Sun In The Morning’, the bass-funk of ‘Doves’ , the slow epic atmosphere of ‘A Song For Our Grandfathers’ or the brilliant album closer ‘A Dream Within A Dream’.
“There’s quite enough eccentricity in Herring’s vocal delivery whether he’s whispering, skulking, brooding, wailing, growling, crooning or delivering a monologue like David Bowie in Labyrinth on ‘Fall From Grace’. His range is beautifully dramatic and spirited and the music doubles down on providing an effective poignant foil for that – focusing on chugging bass, propulsive rhythms and colourful synths. It’s a perfect distillation of Future Islands which just happens to leave a more accessible, hook-laden welcoming impression than before. The band are all on the same powerful page rather than just being “that band with the eccentric lead singer.”
And let’s face it – as Letterman proved, and as this album substantiates, Herring, Gerrit Welmers and William Cashion have a lot more highly-strung emotion and joyful connections to make with audiences.”
“What a pleasure it is to arrive at the sixth album from an artist to find them at the peak of their music-making abilities. Press play on Our Love and that sentiment is obvious.
“Snaith’s psychedelic imprint and swells of emotion covers everything, through his falsetto and his preference for nostalgic-faced melodies. His lyrics add to the tenderness, chiefly concerned with a slipping, fading love, yet he offers us, and himself, solace in every other way.
“On Our Love, Snaith is now fully immersed in the world of the nightclub but he wears his heart on his turntable. That doesn’t mean that there’s an dumbing down or mindlessness. There is a simplicity to a lot of the tracks that, only comes from putting in the long hours. Snaith’s love of his craft continues to shine. If anything, he’s has just better at making things sound larger with less.”
Best buddies El-P and Killer Mike made the year’s best rap record.
“The sequel to one of the best rap mixtapes in recent times does what many sequels do not. It improves the dynamic between the cast, it delivers smarter, more quotable lines, it takes aim at larger targets and it adds a whole lot of bang.
“Run The Jewels 2 is what happens when a producer-rapper/rapper hit a career high at the same damn time. Because this is El and Mike’s album, they own it. Because even though there are vocal guests: RATM’s Zack De La Rocha, singer/producer Boots and Three 6 Mafia’s Gangsta Boo, they serve the version of a banging lean record, rather than overcrowd it.
“RTJ2 is two buddies, operating at their creative peak. It’s more than another chapter, more than a sequel. It’s a sinewy distillation of more than a friendship, it’s a fruitful creative partnership that sounds like it’s been reinforced by steel foundations such is the wicked bulging energy contained within the album’s 40 minutes.”
Dan Snaith’s output is essential at this point regardless of whether he’s making a room move (Caribou in Vicar Street last week – gig of the year), as an album format, remixer or DJ.
As part of Rough Trade’s offering around Our Love, Snaith made a special DJ Mix that was given away with the album and it’s now been made available for wider consumption. It’s a killer mix and it features two new Daphni tracks for good measure.
Aphrodite’s Child – The System
Lata Ramasar – The Greatest Name That Lives
DJ Nori – Happy Sunday (Maurice Fulton Mix)
Black Truth Rhythm Band – Ifetayo (part 2)
Danny Hunt – What’s Happening to Our Love Affair
Christian S. – Jagos (Original Mix)
Andres Lewin – Spectrum
Bernard Parmegiani – Ondes Croisées
Jerry Green – I Finally Found The Love I Need
Todd Edwards – Winter Behaviour
Cricco Castelli – Life Has Changed
Tyree – Video Crash (Crash Mix)
Lil Wayne – I’m Single (Instrumental)
Robert Armani – Ambulance
Jean-Luc Ponty – Computer Incantations for World Peace
Jessie G – It’s Hot
Pépé Bradock – Démarre Le Chauve
Daphni – Ramblin On
??? – ??? (Daphni Edit)
TCB Band – Children of the Future
Aphrodite’s Child – Break